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Offices Chancellor Diocesan Memorandum January 2021

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Diocesan Memorandum

January, 2021 | Vol. 55, no. 1 | Prot. No. C-1/2021

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.



Catholic University Collection | 16-17 January 2021
Located in the heart of the nation’s capital, Catholic University of America offers graduate and undergraduate courses in more than 180 academic programs. By giving to the National Collection, you will help support more than 6,000 students who are seeking a faith-filled education at an institution that supports cutting-edge research in multiple fields. Your investment will enable the University to continue to support the Church and to advance its work of preparing the next generation of leadership, both religious and lay, of our Church and nation. Thank you for your generosity.

Latin America – El Salvador Collection | 23-24 January 2021
The Latin American Collection will take place on 23-24 January 2021. This is the only appeal made by the Diocesan Mission Office for the Cleveland Latin American Mission in El Salvador. It is the main support for two Diocese of Cleveland priests who work in the two parishes served by our Mission Office.  This appeal also makes a contribution to the Collection for the Church in Latin America that is managed by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops and benefits projects and the formation of seminarians, religious and lay leaders in 23 countries across Latin America. 

Office for Worship

February 2021 Liturgical Calendar:

The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord (Candlemas), Tuesday, February 2, 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. The Procession follows. 

The feast of St. Blaise falls on Wednesday, February 3, 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 blessed candles.  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. (Book of Blessings, nos. 1626-1629)

Ash Wednesday falls on February 17, 2021. 

The First Sunday of Lent, February 21, 2021, is also the day when the diocese typically celebrates the Rite of Election of Catechumen and Call to Continuing Conversion of Candidates for Full Communion.  In 2021, due to the continuing coronavirus pandemic, Bishop Malesic has delegated diocesan pastors, priests, and deacons to celebrate this liturgy in their parishes.  Ritual Guides for this liturgy should have been provided; if you need additional information, please contact the Office for Worship.

July 2021 Liturgical Calendar:

Independence Day, July 4, 2021 falls on the Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time.  The Sunday liturgy takes precedence, therefore the liturgical celebration of Independence Day is omitted this year. Independence Day may be acknowledged in the Homily, Universal Prayer, and hymns during the Sunday liturgy.

The Feast of St. Mary Magdalene falls on Thursday, July 22, 2021.  Elevated to a Feast in 2016, the former Memorial was already enriched with many proper liturgical texts in both the Roman Missal and Liturgy of the Hours.  As a Feast, the following also apply:

  • The Glory to God in the highest is sung or said at Mass.
  • All the readings for St. Mary Magdalene in no. 603 of the Lectionary for Mass are proper.
  • In the Office of Readings of the Liturgy of the Hours, the psalmody, verse, and First Reading with its Responsory are taken from the Common of Holy Women; the Te Deum is also sung or said after the Second Reading with its Responsory.

Full texts for the Feast are available online:

Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion
EMHC Formation will continue online for 2021.  Please monitor your diocesan email account for schedule and registration information.

Year of St. Joseph
Pope Francis has proclaimed a special “Year of St Joseph,” beginning on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception 2020 and extending to the same feast in 2021.  In a new Apostolic Letter entitled Patris corde (“With a Father’s Heart”), Pope Francis describes Saint Joseph as a tender and loving, obedient father who is creatively courageous, a working father, a father in the shadows.  This Apostolic Letter marks the 150th anniversary of Blessed Pope Pius IX’s declaration of St Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church.  Please monitor diocesan communications for further details on ways to celebrate this year in your parishes.


2021 Catholic Charities Annual Appeal kicks off in January with the theme “Love your Neighbor.”  During the week of 25 January, close to 100,000 households will receive a letter from Bishop Malesic encouraging support for the Appeal and asking each of us to “help our brothers and sisters in need.” The Appeal goal is $13.5 million and is needed to continue to serve more than 400,000 people in need. Donations can be made online or by texting CCHOPE to 41444.

Parish Appeal: Feb. 20-21 (originally scheduled for 6-7 Feb.) All parishes are asked to conduct the In-Pew Appeal the weekend of 20-21 Feb. We are grateful for the support of our priests and volunteers who faithfully promote the appeal at the parish level and to our loyal parishioners who, through their sacrificial gifts, are changing lives throughout our diocese. Annually, more than $4 million is raised on this weekend across the diocese. Thank you for all you do to encourage participation.

Parish Kits will arrive in all parishes the week of 25 January. If you have questions or for more information contact Sarah Yantek by email or by phone 216-696-6525 x1049.

Contact Karen Joyce by email or by phone 216-696-6525 x1910 with questions about the Appeal.


Human Resources

Ohio’s minimum wage is scheduled to increase from $8.70 to $8.80 per hour for non-tipped employees on January 1, 2021.  Please download the new poster and display it with your other labor law posters. 

Be sure to give new hires or anyone who wants to change their payroll federal tax withholding the 2021 W-4 form beginning January 1, 2021.  

Contact Human Resources (216) 696-6525, ext. 5420 with any questions. 

Fraudulent Unemployment Claims are possible!  If you receive a request from ACR (Associated Compensation Resources) to complete a questionnaire such as the Request for Separation Information from ODJFS for one of your employees that did not file for unemployment, please respond: Claimant has not applied for any unemployment benefits.  FRAUD.  Please forward via email as soon as possible to Cathy Slezak at ACR to allow the matter to be investigated appropriately.  Cathy can also be reached at 216-731-8215. 


Diaconate Formation Office
Institution to the Ministry of Acolyte for the third-year diaconate candidates will take place on Saturday, February 6, 2021 at St. Agnes-Our Lady of Fatima Parish in Cleveland at 5:00 p.m.

Institution to the Ministry of Lector for the second-year diaconate candidates will take place on Saturday, March 6, 2021 at Communion of Saints Parish in Cleveland Heights at 4:00 p.m.

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 .


Hispanic Ministry Office

The Advisory Committee will meet on January 11, 2021 at 7:00 p.m., via Zoom to discuss pastoral resources and activities for the year. For more information, please email Misael Mayorga, or call 216-374-9440. 

Marriage and Family Ministry Office

Parenting Success Network
The pandemic has increased stress in most households. Families with Internet access will find an excellent parenting resource with online support in both English and Spanish here. (To select the preferred language, use the link in the upper right corner of the webpage).

Mental Health First Aid for Adults
We have had a positive response regarding a desire for Mental Health First Aid Training, which the State of Ohio is still offering FREE. This is a great resource for office staff, Catechetical Leaders, Lay Ecclesial Ministers, Deacons and Priests. We are offering two training class options for adults:  January 27 or January 28, 2021, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., via Zoom (a link for the specific call will be sent to you upon registration).

Maximum occupancy per class is 30 people.  If we have an overwhelming response, we can add more days. We can also schedule a Zoom for just your parish if you have a large group interested. Please email Terri Yohman with questions and to register.

Family Perspectives
Please consult the Advent and Christmastide resource in last month’s diocesan memorandum for weekly devotions through January 10th.  The Ordinary Time resource in this month’s memorandum provides weekly devotions through February 14th.  Family Perspectives for Lent and Eastertide will be published in the February memorandum. If your parish would like a direct copy of the Family Perspectives each cycle, please sign up for our Family Perspectives email distribution list using this form. Email Jason Lewis with any questions. 

Requested Resources
The Office for Marriage and Family Ministry is updating resources and compiling information to share with parishes and households throughout the diocese. If you have information in the following areas that can help us update and build our resource base, please use the linked form or email Katie Galicic with details. 

  • Information about Pre-Cana Retreats:
    • We would like to know if your parish will host Pre-Cana in 2021 and if registration is open or closed. Please use this form to respond. If you would like us to advertise your Pre-Cana retreat make sure to include the relevant information in your submission.
    • Email Katie if you need assistance locating a Pre-Cana near you. We hope to be able to share a public list of diocesan Pre-Cana retreats in the near future.
  • Information about Catholic counselors:
    • We would appreciate you sharing any licensed professionals or agencies that have been effective and their contact information. Please email this information to Katie.
    • Visit our website to download our current lists of recommended counseling services.

Missionary Discipleship Office

A First Friday Rosary will follow the 12:00 p.m. Mass on Friday, January 1, 2021. Join us by livestream on Facebook @DOCParishLife.

Young Adult Ministry Office

A Week for Life
Join the Diocesan Office for Youth Ministry, the Diocesan Social Action Committee and the Diocesan Office for Young Adult Ministry in promoting “A Week for Life” –a series of interactive and virtual events from January 22-29.  Events include:

  • January 22: 10AM Mass for Life at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist: a free “ticketed” event to kick off the focus for the week on pro-life issues. 
  • January 22-29:  Each day, we will focus on a multitude of pro-life issues:
    • Anti-Abortion
    • Anti-Assisted Suicide
    • Anti-Death Penalty
    • Anti-Human Trafficking
    • Anti-Racism Initiatives
    • Care for All Creation
    • Humane Immigration Reform

Through these efforts:

  • Daily posted interviews with experts on each topic
  • Infographics for social media sharing
  • A select delegation will be lobbying our representatives in congress on these crucial issues. Please pray for them and our representatives that we can more eagerly work together to promote a culture of life
  • Calls to Action for letter writing to our representatives on pro-life issues

For more information, please contact Francine Costantini or Mike Hayes .

Office of Youth Ministry

Youth Mental Health First Aid Virtual Workshop |January 19 or January 20 – 9am-3pm
All who work with teens are invited to participate in this online workshop, which will be offered twice (pick one date). Learn to identify, understand, and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders. This 6 ½ hour training gives adults the skills they need to reach out and provide initial support to adolescents and transition aged youth (ages 12 -21) who may be developing a mental health or substance use problem and help connect them to the appropriate care.

This is FREE training due to a generous funding from the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services ($170 value per person). Register for January 19 here or January 20 here. Deadline is January 4. Spots are limited!

Desert Day Retreat for Youth Ministers | Tuesday, February 16, 2021 - 9am – 5:30pm | Jesuit Retreat Center
Come and pray. This event is geared to youth ministers, campus ministers, and those who work with high school teens. The retreat will start with an inspiring talk followed by silent time to read, reflect, respond, and pray in solitude with God. Mass, Adoration, Confession, and Spiritual Direction will be available. We will provide materials to reflect on or you are welcome to bring your own.  

Spots are limited to ensure social distancing, so sign up quickly.  Pricing differs based on need.  Register here. 


Webinar for Parish Leaders on Inspiration, Organization, and Renewal: How the New Directory for Catechesis can Energize and Shape Your Ministry | Wednesday, January 13, 2021 from 10 – 11:30 AM.

This session will briefly review some key insights and directives from the new Directory for Catechesis and invite participants to envision how to put the catechetical vision of the Church into practice in innovative ways that respond to our current challenges.  Our presenter is Dr. Joseph White, Director of Catechetical Resources for OSV Publishing.  Please contact Alicia Breeden for the webinar link.


Office of Human Life

The Respect Life Program for January 2021 offers activities for the 9 Days for Life Novena and the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision. Homily helps, bulletin announcements and prayers are included. For more information, click here.

As a reminder, the Diocesan Mass for Life will be celebrated on Friday, January 22, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist.  Seating will be extremely limited and is by reservation only.  Masks and social distancing will be required.  The Office of Worship is coordinating the reservation process.

Please contact Deacon Paul Kipfstuhl in the Diocesan Social Action Office at 330-703-7979 with questions you may have on either of these events.


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

Monthly Sunday Grief Support January 17th:
Catholic Cemeteries Association continues with our monthly in-office grief support groups on January 17th with limited seating for social distancing.    We meet the 3rd Sunday of every month from 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);
  • All Souls Cemetery, Chardon (office).

Meeting sites are sanitized and seating is arranged so everyone is at a safe distance.  Participants are requested to RSVP so we can plan appropriate social distancing at each location.  Participants are required to wear protective facial coverings.   The January topic is “Facing the New Year with Hope and Love”. 

We continue our special appeal to east side parishes to let your grieving families know about our free and safe in-office monthly grief support meetings.  Please advise those in your parish who are in contact with the bereaved, to reach out and suggest one of our east side grief support groups.  Even if you have grief support at your parish, this is a free source of additional support for them.  They will be blessed by attending.  To RSVP or for questions, please contact Rhonda at 216-930-4866. 

“A Closer Walk With Thee” – CCA Monthly Grief Support E-Newsletter:
Please continue to inform your grieving parishioners about Catholic Cemeteries Association’s monthly grief support e-newsletter, “A Closer Walk with Thee”.  This e-newsletter is emailed the first Tuesday of each month to any family/individual who has expressed an interest in our bereavement programs.  To subscribe to this valued grief support resource, visit Grief Support E-News signup, or contact Rhonda at 216-930-4866.


First Friday Club of Cleveland

Why We Believe What We Believe:  Restoring the Value of Family Presented by: Greg Wasinski | Thursday, January 7, 2021 | Live Webinar begins at Noon via Zoom | Registration and more information here.


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. 

60 Minutes from Belfast - Joy and Happiness. A Livestream Event | Saturday, January 9 from 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. | Fr. Brendan McManus, SJ and Jim Deeds | Pay what you can $10-$50

8-Day Individually Directed Retreat (IDR) | Sunday, January 10, 5:00 p.m. - Sunday, January 17, 1:00 p.m. | $695

Food for the Journey - Virtual Program. The Easter Mysteries with Beatrice Bruteau | Saturday mornings from 9:00 a.m. - 12:00noon, January 30, February 27, March 27, April 24 | Martha Campbell, M.A., Psy.D. | $120


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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