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Why Catholic? Meet Bishop Edward C. Malesic
Offices Chancellor Diocesan Memorandum August 2020

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Diocesan Memorandum

August, 2020 | Vol. 54, no. 8 | Prot. No. C-37/2020

The Diocesan Memorandum (formerly the Clergy Memorandum) is a service of the Office of the Chancellor for clergy and lay leadership of the Diocese of Cleveland, providing a summary of relevant and timely information from the Office of the Bishop and other diocesan offices.


Appointment of Bishop of Cleveland
On July 16, the Holy See announced that the Holy Father has appointed Bishop Edward C. Malesic of Greensburg as bishop of Cleveland. Bishop Malesic was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Harrisburg in 1987 and was installed as bishop of Greensburg in 2015. He will be installed as the twelfth bishop of Cleveland on Monday September 14, the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. Due to the current public health crisis, attendance at the installation will be severely limited and will be by invitation only.

Accusations against David Haas
The Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis has received multiple reports from women alleging that liturgical artist and composer David Haas engaged in inappropriate conduct with them. Mr. Haas apologized for these actions. The Catholic Diocese of Cleveland is suspending the use of his music at all diocesan events. David Haas may not give presentations at workshops, concerts, or similar events hosted by the diocese, parishes, Catholic Schools, or other Catholic institutions in our diocese. 

Parishes are encouraged to exercise caution in the use of Haas’ music at ordinary Sunday and weekday liturgies, out of sensitivity to those who have been harmed. Some of the most popular compositions by Mr. Haas include: ‘You Are Mine,’ ‘Blessed Are They,’ ‘I Know That My Redeemer Lives,’ ‘We Have Been Told/Now We Remain,’ ‘We Are Called,’ as well as numerous Psalm settings and other ritual pieces. 

New Catholic High School at Saint Paul Parish, Akron
Contrary to rumor, a new Catholic high school will not be opening on the site of Saint Paul Parish, Akron, this fall. Please contact the Diocesan Administrator with any questions. 

Dispensation from Mass obligation
The dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass remains in effect until further notice. The period of time in which to fulfil the obligation to receive Holy Communion annually has been extended by one year from the end of the Easter Season, 2020. 

Parishes have been able to resume public celebration of the liturgy from May 25, according to the judgment of the pastor. The latest guidelines for the manner of public celebration are given on the Diocesan website, which are to be applied according to the pastor’s prudent discretion.

Protecting God's Children
In our continued effort to comply with the requirements of the USCCB Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, the Office for Protection of Children & Youth and Communications department is asking parishes to publish the bulletin announcement below at least twice during the time period of August 2020 through December 2020.  When published, parishes are asked to forward an electronic copy of the bulletin to Brooke Uehlein.  

Bulletin Announcement:

Protecting God's Children
The Diocese of Cleveland's “protecting God's Children” program is a continuing effort to instruct and inform everyone about the protection of children from sexual abuse.  To report any past or present suspected inappropriate behavior toward children by priests, deacons, religious, lay ecclesial ministers or personnel associated with the Church, please contact the Diocesan Response Service Office at 216-334-2999 or via email at  You are also asked to immediately inform local authorities about inappropriate behavior. 


Faith and Value Appeal for Catholic Education:  22-23 August 2020
The 2020-21 Faith & Values Appeal for Catholic Education Parish In-Pew Appeal will take place in most parishes the weekend of 22-23 August. Bulletin and pulpit announcements for Announcement and Commitment Weekends, as well as a fact sheet about Catholic Education in our diocese can be downloaded at 

Letters will be mailed to previous donors the week of 24 August.  Monies raised will be used for tuition assistance programs.  The tuition assistance programs provide a faith-based education to students in need.  Please be generous.  Any questions, please contact Karen Joyce at 800-869-6525 ext. 1910.

Office for Worship

Eucharistic Prayer
Please be advised that, until after Bishop Malesic’s Mass of Installation on Monday, September 14th, 2020, we will continue to omit the clause for the bishop in the Eucharistic Prayer:

“...together with your servant Francis, our Pope, and all the clergy...” 

As we await Bishop Malesic’s Installation, please include the following prayer at all Masses:

“For Bishop Edward Malesic, the next shepherd of our diocese; that the Holy Spirit will continue to enlighten and empower him with grace, confidence and hope.  We pray…” 

Masks during Mass
Many parishes have reported concerns over parishioners who have returned to the celebration of parish Masses, yet refuse to wear masks or face shields. Some of these individuals cite “civil liberties” as the reason for their refusal.  It may be helpful to remind your parishioners that the health and physical well-being of our brothers and sisters in Christ is under threat.  Wearing masks and/or face shields during a pandemic is an action taken out of love for neighbor, the second of the two Great Commandments.  “In the celebration of Mass the faithful form a holy people,…so that they may give thanks to God and…so that they may learn to offer their very selves.  They should, moreover, take care to show this by their…charity toward brothers and sisters who participate with them in the same celebration. They are consequently to avoid any appearance of singularity or division.” (GIRM, no. 95)  Wearing masks or face shields. 

Supporting the Domestic Church
It has been observed that families with children have, in many cases, not yet returned to regular celebration of Mass.  Parishes may consider reaching out to their families and supporting their worship at home through various means, including offering livestreamed Children’s Liturgies of the Word, virtual praise and worship style singing groups, or helping families to organize physical distancing faith-sharing and Scripture study groups.  In this way, families can remain connected with the parish and with one another, even if they are physically distanced from the church building. 

September 2020 Liturgical Calendar:
Tuesday, September 1st is the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation.  Even if no special Mass formulary or readings are selected for the occasion, it would still be appropriate to mention the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation and its significance in the homily, petitions, and/or concluding announcements. 

The anniversary of the dedication of the Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist on Sunday, September 6th is observed as a solemnity in the Cathedral and as a feast in the parishes of the diocese.  The feast does not supersede the Twenty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time, so diocesan parishes other than the Cathedral will omit this feast this year.

Monday, September 7th is Labor Day, which coincides with the Diocesan Special Day of Prayer for Human Rights and Equality. 

September 20th, the third Sunday in September, is Catechetical Sunday.  The ceremony for the blessing and commissioning of catechists is intended to take place at the Eucharistic liturgy on Catechetical Sunday. If this is not possible, the blessing and commissioning may be celebrated at Mass at another time, or it may be used outside of Mass, perhaps with the praying of the Liturgy of the Hours or at a simple commissioning service. “Order for the Blessing of Those Appointed as Catechists” can be found in the Book of Blessings, no. 491.

February 2021 Liturgical Calendar
The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord (Candlemas), Tuesday, 2 February 2021, is one of only two liturgical celebrations which call for a procession of the faithful into church carrying lighted candles—the other being the Easter Vigil. The faithful gather outside the church (or for pastoral reasons, inside the church), and after their candles are lit, the priest blesses them: “O God, source and origin of all light, ...sanctify with your blessing these candles, which we are eager to carry in praise of your name, so that, treading the path of virtue, we may reach that light which never fails.” The Procession follows. (Roman Missal, third typical edition, “Proper of Saints,” February 2)  

The feast of St. Blaise falls on Wednesday, 3 February 2021.  If the blessing [of throats] is conferred during Mass, the blessing follows the homily and general intercessions, or, for pastoral reasons, the prayer of blessing may take the place of the final blessing of the Mass. The blessing may be given by touching the throat of each person with two candles blessed on the feast of the Presentation of the Lord (February 2) and which have been joined together in the form of a cross. 

If, for pastoral reasons, each individual cannot be blessed in the manner described above, a priest or deacon may give the blessing to all assembled by extending hands, without the crossed candles, over the people while saying the prayer of blessing. The blessing may also be given to the sick or the elderly in their homes when they cannot attend the parish celebration, even by lay ministers.  A lay minister always says the prayer of blessing without making the sign of the cross. (Book of Blessings, nos. 1626-1629)

Office of the Chancellor

Status Animarum report
Parishes should have recently received a reminder to fill out the Status Animarum annual statistical report. Completion of this report is mandatory for all parishes in the diocese. This year, please note in particular a couple of points worthy of special mention: 

The Status Animarum report collects data from July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020. Of course, the public health crisis this year means that many statistics (e.g. marriages and sacraments of initiation) may be very different from ‘normal’ years. Please be sure to submit data corresponding to events as they actually occurred in the stated period of time, not as they had been scheduled to take place.

Similarly, the Mass schedule should be reported as it was at the end of June 2020, including any temporary changes caused by the covid-19 pandemic. The Office of the Chancellor will contact each parish later in the year to obtain a more permanent Mass schedule for entry into the Diocesan Directory.


Now is the time to register for #weGiveCatholic Giving Day

Tuesday, 1 December, 2020
Let’s celebrate and highlight the generosity and good works of all Catholics in our Diocese with Northeast Ohio’s online day of Catholic Giving on Tuesday, 1 December, 2020. Participating organizations will be eligible to receive cash prizes offered by the Catholic Community Foundation and its partners. Register your organization now at Contact Linda Corcoran at the Catholic Community Foundation, 216-696-6525 x1042,

2020 Catholic Charities Annual Appeal – a total of $11,983,654 raised as of 30 June. Thank you for your generosity during these unprecedented times. 

Phonathon: Calling continues through the end of August to previous donors. For homes with caller ID, the number of the call is 216-696-6525.

Click here for updated parish stats and Appeal information. Contact Karen Joyce or 216-696-6525 x1910 with questions.

Priestly Formation Annual Appeal
Letters will arrive in 32,000 homes the week of 3 August. Your prayerful and financial support is vital for inviting and forming men for the priesthood. To donate online, click here. Contact Karen Joyce or 216-696-6525 x1910 with questions.

Your Catholic Legacy
The past few months have been challenging, but have also provided an opportunity for reflection. As you consider the values and legacy that you would like to pass on to loved ones and organizations you care about, know that there are simple ways to integrate your Catholic values into your estate plan. Common legacy gifts include making a bequest in your will or trust, or designating a charity as the beneficiary of your IRA, 401(k) or life insurance policy. By planning for a gift to your parish, Catholic Charities, Catholic Education or Priestly Formation, you are helping to continue the work of the Church for future generations – and speaking to the importance of your faith in your life.

For a confidential conversation, contact Mary Lou Ozimek of the Catholic Community Foundation at (216) 696-6525 x4070 or learn more online.

Emergency Response Fund
The purpose of this fund is to assist pastors in immediately being able to help families and individuals in the parish community who ask for financial assistance to purchase food, pay their rent, fill their prescriptions or pay utility bills. Pastors can begin the simple application process at Applications will be reviewed weekly. If you have any questions, please contact Colleen Rigo, 216-696-6525 x4080.

Bulletin/Email Announcement for the Universal Offertory Program
You can now make your offertory donation to our parish using a secure online link set up by the Catholic Community Foundation. All monies will be directed to our parish. To make your online donation, click here and select our Parish Name from the dropdown menu.  Please consider giving an amount that is equal to or exceeds your monthly offertory contributions. Your generosity is needed—and appreciated—now more than ever.


Transition to Electronic Billing
As of June 2020, the Diocese will begin to transition bills for Diocesan obligations to e-mail. The monthly invoices will arrive at the parish via e-mail. By December, we expect that all billings will be electronic and no invoices will be sent through US mail. Please be sure to check the business manager e-mail box for your invoice. If your parish or school does not have someone assigned to the Diocesan Business Manager email address (ending in, please contact as soon as possible. The business manager email can only be set up through the pastor.



Diaconate Aspirancy Program – September 2021

Inquiry for Diaconate
The Diaconate Formation Office is accepting inquiries for men interested in the diaconate. To be considered, an applicant must be Roman Catholic at least 30 years of age, who is an active member of his parish with the support of his pastor. He must be in good health, of sound moral character, mature faith, regular practice in the sacramental life of the Church and have a sense of vocation to service. If married, he must be in a valid Catholic marriage for a minimum of five years, have the support of his wife and family and be in a strong, stable marriage. If unmarried, he must be willing and able to commit to celibacy. Although an upper age limit for application has not been established for the Cleveland diocese, the expectation is that ordained deacons will have the health and energy to provide a minimum of ten years of ordained ministry to the diocese of Cleveland.

 Our next Diocesan Diaconate Aspirancy Program will begin in September 2021.  All men interested in applying to the 2021 program are asked to please write to Deacon David S. Kushner, Director of Diaconate Formation, Center for Pastoral Leadership, 28700 Euclid Avenue, Wickliffe, Ohio  44092, or telephone the Diaconate Formation Office at 440-943-7651, or email

Saint Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology
Saint Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology announces that funds are now available through the “Outreach Trust Fund” administered by Saint Mary Seminary. Through the generosity of an anonymous donor, money is available to provide assistance for projects that will aid the poor and needy of the Diocese of Cleveland; promote vocations to the priesthood and religious life, with a special concern for the needs of minority groups; or assist the foreign missions. This Fund is unrelated to the Seminary Endowment Fund which helps finance operations at the Seminary. Fund Trustees are now accepting proposals requesting funding up to $8,000.  For an application, please write to Ms. Terri Zakraysek, Saint Mary Seminary, 28700 Euclid Avenue, Wickliffe, OH 44092 or e-mail her at Completed applications must be submitted no later than October 1, 2020. Grants will most likely be funded by January, 2021.



The Secretariat for Parish Life and Development is pleased to welcome Teresa Yohman to our staff. Terri has been appointed director of the Office of Marriage and Family Ministry. Her first day was July 20. Terri has recently joined us from St. Martin of Tours in Valley City where she served as Coordinator of Youth Ministry and has previously worked in schools and mental health counseling providing support for children and families. We are so excited that Terri has joined our Parish Life team.

Office for Protection of Children & Youth
This is the time of year when we collect the Annual Compliance Forms indicating our compliance with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. We must have on file documentation of our efforts over the past audit year (July 1, 2019—June 30, 2020) to keep kids safe. There are some updates to this Annual Compliance Form, so please review it carefully before submitting. Return the form to Debbie Morris or mail it to Diocese of Cleveland, Office for Protection of Children, 1404 E. 9th St. 5th Floor, Cleveland, OH 44114. Contact Debbie if you need a duplicate form. The form was due July 31 so please send it in ASAP. Any questions, call or email Sharon Minson or 216-696-6525 x 1157.

Youth & Young Adult Ministries
Ministering in a COVID-19 pandemic environment with its unknowns and evolving scenarios is not easy to navigate.  As we work together to bring about transformational encounters with Christ Jesus for all, our office continues to evaluate safe youth ministry in a pandemic environment.  Recommendations and best practices can be found here. 

Office of Missionary Discipleship
The Office of Missionary Discipleship will host a virtual meeting dialogue, Ignite the Fire of Faith, on evangelization for parishes in the diocese on Friday, August 7, 2020 at 2:00 p.m.  Contact Miguel Chavez for more information. 

Catholic Renewal Ministries
For information on traveling Masses and other events, please refer to All Masses and events are subject to change due to the coronavirus policies of the State of Ohio and the Diocese of Cleveland. 

The SS. Cosmas and Damian prayer group meets weekly on Sunday at 7:00 p.m. at the church, 10439 Ravenna Rd., Twinsburg.  The meeting also streams live and is recorded and available for viewing on the SS. Cosmas and Damian Facebook page. Denny Carleton will lead worship and Fr. Michael Stalla will teach. For more information, please contact Brenda or Denny Carleton at 216-392-8749.

Join Peter’s Shadow Healing Prayer Ministry on Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m.  To enter the meeting use ID: 848 4900 3670 and Password: behealed.

Join Catholic Renewal Ministries outside with social distancing to pray and praise God.  Festivals of Praise/Prayer Meetings are scheduled (weather permitting) in July, August, and September from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.:

  • In the shrine area at St. John of the Cross Parish, 140 Richmond Rd., Euclid, on Fridays: July 17, August 14 and September 11
  • In the wooded area behind the parish office at St. Peter Parish, 35777 Center Ridge Rd., North Ridgeville on Saturdays: July 25, August 22 and September 26.

For any questions, please call CRM at 440-944-9445.

All are invited to attend Catholic Renewal Ministries’ Fall Mini-Conference to be held on September 18th and 19th, 2020, at St. Peter Parish in North Ridgeville. Deacon Ralph Poyo will lead the conference addressing the theme of Missionary Discipleship. See the attached flyer for additional information and registration, or call CRM at 440-944-9445.

Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth Chapter of Magnificat, a women’s ministry modeled after the Visitation, invites you to a Breakfast Saturday, September 19, 2020, at Walsh University, Barrette Center, 2020 East Maple Street, North Canton, Ohio. Alexandra Andrews will be the guest speaker. The cost is $22 by mail or $23 online. Print out a reservation form or pay online. Reservations cannot be accepted after September 12th. Physical distancing is required, guests are asked not to congregate and masks are recommended. There will be an optional Mass at 8:00 a.m. in Our Lady of Perpetual Help Chapel at Walsh University.  For further information call Joan Spieth at 330-933-8778.



Please visit our website for the most updated schedule of events.

Monthly Sunday Grief Support August 16th:

Catholic Cemeteries Association continues with in-office grief support groups on August 16thwith limited seating.  We will meet 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the following locations:

Saint Joseph Cemetery, Avon (NEW office);

Holy Cross Cemetery, Akron (office);

Holy Cross Cemetery, Brook Park (office);

Calvary Cemetery, Cleveland (office);

All Saints Cemetery, Northfield (office);

and All Souls Cemetery, Chardon (office).

Meeting sites will be sanitized and seating will be arranged so everyone is at a safe distance.  Participants are requested to RSVP so we can plan appropriate social distancing at each location.  We recommend that participants wear protective masks.   The August topic is “He Knows Me. He Calls My Name.”  To RSVP or for questions, please contact Rhonda at 216-930-4866. 


Jesuit Retreat Center Programs, 5629 State Road, Parma, Ohio 44134

For more information on the programs listed below, please click here or call 440-884-9300. 

Retreat Day for Educators: We Rise Again! Resurrection and Resilience for Catholic Educators | Tuesday, August 4 from 9:00am - 3:00pm or Thursday, August 6 from 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. | Presented by Dr. Bill Hobbs, EdD and Dr. Jessica Wrobleski | Cost: $50/each ($40/each for groups of 10 or more).

Sabbath Days - Personal Retreat Days | Monday, August 10, 6:00 p.m. - Monday, August 17, 1:00 p.m. | Cost: $650

August Pre-Baptism Class for Parents | Monday, August 10 from 7:00 - 8:00 p.m. | Cost per couple: $20

August Morning Prayer for Women | Monday, August 17 from 9:30 - 11:00 a.m. | Presented by Sr. Mary Ann Flannery, SC | Cost: $10

Cinema and Conversation: Mary Magdalene | Monday, August 17 from 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. | Cost: Free Will Offering

Praying Your Type: An Exploration of Personality Type and Spirituality | Friday, August 21, 7:00 p.m. - Sunday, August 23, 11:00 a.m. | Dr. Bill Hobbs, EdD | Cost: Click here for list of registration options.

Flyers which may be of interest to readers of the Diocesan Memorandum may be found here.

Submissions for the next Memorandum should be made to Ann Marie Perkins by the 15th of the preceding month. Guidelines for submissions are available here.

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