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Offices Chancellor Diocesan Memorandum November 2019

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Diocesan Memorandum

November, 2019 | Vol. 53, no. 11 | Prot. No. C-58/2019

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.


Death of the Most Reverend Richard Lennon
The Most Reverend Richard G. Lennon, Bishop of Cleveland emeritus, died on the morning of Tuesday October 29, fortified by the rites of the Church. He was 72. He served as tenth Bishop of Cleveland from May 15, 2006 until his retirement for health reasons on December 28, 2016. He bore his illness with patience and humility. He will be remembered with gratitude for his tireless dedication to ensuring the stable future of the Diocese of Cleveland, in its parishes, Catholic education, and service to those in need. Obsequies will begin with First Vespers for the Dead at 3pm on Monday November 4th, with lying-in-state and visitation continuing until 7pm. Visitation will resume at 8:30am on Tuesday November 5th until 10:45am, with the Funeral Mass to follow at 11am. May his soul, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

Diocesan news release | Obituary notice

National Vocation Awareness Week
The Catholic Church in the United States will celebrate National Vocation Awareness Week, November 3-9, 2019. During this week, dioceses across the U.S. lead the effort in parishes and schools to uphold and encourage the fostering of vocations among the faithful and to pray for those currently discerning a call to marriage, ordained ministry, or consecrated life. Resources are available at

Collection for the Archdiocese for the Military Services, USA: 9-10 November
The National Collection for the Archdiocese for the Military Services, USA (AMS) is a triennial collection approved by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in 2012, first taken in 2013, and again in 2016. The mission of the Archdiocese is to “serve those who serve” by providing the same pastoral care and services as any other Catholic diocese to Catholics serving in the United States Armed Forces and their families, and others. The National Collection for the AMS will take place the weekend of 9-10 November 2019. Please remit funds to CDC Finance Office, Payment Processing, 1404 E. 9th St., FL 8, Cleveland, OH 44114. 

Catholic Campaign for Human Development National Collection: 23-24 November 2019
Many American families are struggling to make ends meet but the struggle is even more difficult for the nearly 46.2 million Americans living in poverty. Your donation will empower local communities and strengthen families that are on the margins.  Parishes and organizations in the Diocese of Cleveland are using the funds from the CCHD campaign via awarded grants to bring about real change and sustainable processes that help people in poverty break this cycle.  Please help us continue this good work by supporting the collection for CCHD.

Help support the mission and work of CCHD by:

  • Praying for the nearly 46.2 million Americans who feel the negative impact of the economy which includes job loss, salary freezes and reduction of  benefits
  • Announcing the CCHD Appeal the weekend before hand and distributing the promotional materials which each parish has received in the mail
  • Sharing the stories of our funded groups - for a listing of funded diocesan projects visit the Diocesan Social Action Office webpage to read the latest CCHD Newsletter.

Bulletin Announcements are available here. The 2019 CCHD Newsletter is also available here.

For parish resources visit the National Collections website. For additional information, contact Ann Clark, Diocesan Director of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development at 216-939-3841.

Retirement Fund for Religious: 7-8 December 2019
The Retirement Fund for Religious is an annual collection to raise funds that are distributed to religious communities throughout the eight counties of the diocese and across the country. These funds help communities provide for the immediate needs of their elder members, such as medications and healthcare. This years’ collection for the Retirement Fund for Religious will be on the weekend of December 7 – 8, 2019.

Gregory A. Coogan named Secretary for Catechetical Formation for the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland
Bishop Perez announces the appointment of Gregory A. Coogan to serve as Secretary for Catechetical Formation for the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland. Mr. Coogan comes to the Diocese of Cleveland from the Diocese of Camden, New Jersey.

As Secretary for Catechetical Formation in the Diocese of Cleveland, Coogan will be responsible for providing leadership, direction, and resources to parish and Catholic school catechetical leaders and catechists in the Diocese of Cleveland. He will also serve as an agent and delegate of the bishop in all catechetical matters regarding Catholic parishes, schools, and Newman Catholic Campus Ministry. In addition, he will provide the spiritual, organizational, fiscal, and administrative strategic leadership and direction necessary to lead and assist those who carry out various catechetical ministries within the diocese all the while ensuring that the principles and teachings of the Church and the norms and the directives of the bishop are promulgated and honored as they relate to Catholic education.

In March of 2019, Bishop Perez announced that, after proper consultation, the former diocesan position of Secretary for Catechetical Formation and Education/Superintendent of Schools was to be split into the two separate positions of Secretary for Catechetical Formation, and that of Secretary for Education and Superintendent of Schools. Dr. Frank O’Linn was named Secretary for Education and Superintendent of Schools at that time.

Protecting God’s Children

In our continued effort to comply with the requirements of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops “Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People,” the Office of the Bishop, Office for Protection of Children & Youth and Communications department are asking all parishes to please publish the bulletin announcement below during the month of October and December, 2019. When published parishes are asked to forward a copy of their bulletin electronically to Brooke Uehlein (email with direct online link is acceptable) –or mail a hard copy to: Diocese of Cleveland Department of Communications c/o Deacon Jim Armstrong, 1404 East Ninth Street – 6th floor, Cleveland, Ohio 44114-2503

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. You are also asked to immediately inform local authorities about inappropriate behavior.


Office for Worship

Liturgical Ministry Formation:
Registration is now open for three special formation sessions in November for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion to the Sick and Homebound.  Registration is limited to already commissioned emHCs, is to be completed by the parish or institution of ministry, and is password protected.  Check your parish’s diocesan email account for the registration email (sent September 23, 2019).

New Ritual Book:
The Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments [CDWDS] has confirmed the Order of Baptism of Children, second edition for the dioceses of the United States.  The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord, February 2, 2020, has been established as the first-use date for ritual editions, and the obligatory-use date of Easter Sunday, April 12, 2020.  Ritual editions, both English-only and English-Spanish, are now available for pre-order from five publishers.  Pre-order may be made through the Office for Worship for three of the five publishers, but payment in advance is required.  For an Office for Worship pre-order form, click here.

December Liturgical Calendar Reminders: (please reference the June 2019 Diocesan Memorandum for details on the December 2019 liturgical calendar)

The Liturgical Year begins on Sunday, December 1.  The new Liturgical Year uses Sunday Lectionary Cycle A, Weekday Lectionary Cycle II.  See the Office for Worship website for the  Annual Liturgical Calendar and Notes.

The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, would normally fall on Sunday, December 8th; however, since Sundays of Advent outrank this Solemnity, our observance of the Solemnity is transferred to Monday, December 9th. The obligation to attend Mass for the observance of the Solemnity does NOT transfer.

The Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord Jesus is celebrated on Wednesday, December 25th, and is a holyday of obligation.

The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, is celebrated on Wednesday, January 1st, and is a holyday of obligation

Weddings within Mass may be celebrated on these Solemnities.  Please reference this online chart for the pattern of a Wedding Within the Mass of the Day.

May 2020 Liturgical Calendar:
The Permanent Diaconate Ordination will be celebrated at The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist on Saturday, May 2, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.

The Presbyteral Ordination will be celebrated at The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist on Saturday, May 16, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.

In pastoral consideration of the needs of the faithful, the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated in the Diocese of Cleveland on Sunday, May 24, 2020, not as a holyday of obligation on “Ascension Thursday.”  Scriptures and Orations for all Vigil and Sunday Masses should celebrate the Ascension of the Lord, not the Seventh Sunday of Easter.

Confirmation will be celebrated at The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist on Saturday, May 30, 2020 at 4:30 p.m.  All adults who have not been confirmed, or teens who were unable to attend their parish Confirmation liturgy, are invited to register to attend the Cathedral’s Confirmation.  Please contact the Cathedral Rectory Office for registration information.

The Solemnity of Pentecost is celebrated on Sunday, May 31, 2020.  Masses after 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 30th, celebrate the Vigil of Pentecost, either extended form or simple form.  The extended form of the Pentecost Vigil resembles the Easter Vigil, in that four Scripture readings, psalms, and corresponding prayers are proclaimed prior to the singing of the Glory to God. The Collect follows the Gloria, and the Epistle reading follows the Collect.  After this, the extended Vigil Mass proceeds as usual.  Masses on May 31st should celebrate the Pentecost Mass during the Day.  In either the extended Vigil, the simple Vigil, or the Mass during the Day, the proper Preface is used.  If the Roman Canon is used, the proper form of the Communicantes is said.  A formula of Solemn Blessing may be used, and the Dismissal repeats the Easter dismissal, the extended Alleluia.  Following the last Mass of Pentecost, the Paschal Candle is extinguished, and moved to a location within the baptistery or proximate to the baptismal font.  

Weddings Within the Mass of the Day may be celebrated on the Solemnity of Pentecost.  Please reference this online chart for more information.

Liturgical Catechesis Notes: Low-Gluten Hosts
As parishes prepare children for First Communion, it is important to discuss with parents now any needs for accommodations due to celiac or gluten intolerance.  Gluten-free hosts are invalid matter for the celebration of Mass.  However, a low-gluten host has been developed. Its contents are unleavened wheat and water and it is free of additives, which conforms to the requirements of the Code of Canon Law (canon 924, §2). This low gluten content is still enough to obtain the confection of bread for the Eucharist. Many gluten-intolerant persons may be able to consume it, or some portion of it. Such persons, however, are strongly advised to consult in advance with their physicians.  There are four USCCB-approved suppliers of low-gluten hosts.

Click here to read the Diocese of Cleveland policy, see low-gluten host suppliers’ contact information, and read suggested procedures for the use of low-gluten hosts.

Click here to read the USCCB-BCDW Newsletter regarding this matter (pg. 38). 


Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist


Cathedral of St John the Evangelist; 1007 Superior Ave; Cleveland 44114. FREE, (no tickets, no reservations); Free secure parking: Cathedral garage & lot, Rockwell & E 9th St.

Friday, November 8 at 7:30 p.m.| Cleveland Chamber Choir | Scott MacPherson, Director.

Monday, December 2 at 7:30 p.m.| Daughters of St Paul Choir | He is Born: 11thannual Christmas Concert.


Saint Mary Seminary Mullen Lecture
This year’s Saint Mary Seminary Mullen Lecture will be held on Sunday, November 17, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. at the Center for Pastoral Leadership, 28700 Euclid Avenue, Wickliffe. This year’s speaker is the Reverend Martin Zielinski, professor at the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary in Chicago. The top is “The New Visions and Directions of 1919: An Assessment 100 Years Later.”


Human Resources

New Overtime Regulations
Most employees who make less than $684 per week ($35,568. Annually) will be eligible for overtime pay under a final rule issued by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) effective January 1, 2020.  Your employees who make less than the threshold (except clergy, religious and teachers) must be paid overtime at a rate of one and one-half times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked over 40 in a work week.  Note that even if an employee makes this rate or above they still must meet the duties test to be classified as exempt from overtime pay.  For additional information go to:  Questions?  Call the Human Resources Office at:  (216) 696-6525:  Donna Speagle at ext. 8760, Jen D’Amico at ext. 5420, or Mary Ann Blakeley at ext. 3930. 

New Benefit – Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
All employees and eligible dependents have access to this program at no cost to them.  There are a variety of supportive ways the EAP can assist employees – everything from helping navigate behavioral health challenges to discovering solutions for child care or elder care.  Moore Counseling & Mediation Services, Inc. is an independent service provider with whom the Diocese of Cleveland has contracted to provide assistance to employees.  And it’s completely confidential.  Visit Moore Counseling & Mediation Services at  or call (216) 404-1900 24/7.  Contact Paul Hudak at (216) 696-6525, ext. 5030 with any questions.


Office of Ministry to African American Catholics

November has been designated as Black Catholic History Month to celebrate the long history and proud heritage of Black Catholics. November was chosen because it holds two  ommemorative dates for prominent African Catholics: St. Augustine of Hippo, whose birthday is Nov. 13; and St. Martin de Porres, whose feast day is Nov. 3.  For information about resources to celebrate the contributions of Black Catholics to our tradition, please contact Mr. Cary Dabney in the Office of Ministry to African American Catholics for the diocese at (216) 696-6525, ext. 3020. 

Lay Ecclesial Ministry Office 

Information about Diocesan Lay Ecclesial Ministry Certification
Come and experience evening prayer at a Friday formation session, and learn more about the Diocesan Certification Process at our Lay Ecclesial Ministry Open Houses on December 13, 2019 and January 17, 2020. View the flyer and RSVP to attend. 

Raising funds to help form and educate future lay ecclesial ministers
Please join us in our efforts to advocate for lay ecclesial ministry and to raise funds to help form and educate future lay ecclesial ministers through the Lay Ecclesial Ministry Scholarship Fund. The Lay Ecclesial Ministry office will be participating in #weGiveCatholic, on Tuesday December 3, 2019.

Office For Protection Of Children & Youth

VIRTUS Facilitator Training Session
Thursday November 21, 2019 from 9am-4:30pm at the Diocesan Offices, Cathedral Square, 1404 E. 9th Street.  There is no cost for the training or materials. Lunch will be provided. Please park in the Cathedral Square Garage on Rockwell to be reimbursed for parking.  Pastors, feel free to recommend someone to take the training to become a VIRTUS Facilitator for your parish or school. There are no specific academic or professional requirements to qualify, but the person must be mature, comfortable with the sensitive topic of prevention of child sexual abuse, and able to facilitate small group settings. The application can be accessed at https://child-protection/resources  and clicking on VIRTUS Facilitator Application at bottom of page. Scan and email the completed application to Sharon Minson and RSVP by Fri. Nov. 15, 2019. 

Youth & Young Adult Ministry
We are blessed to have 211 participants representing the Diocese of Cleveland at the National Catholic Youth Conference from November 21-23, 2019 at the Indiana Convention Center. There will be a send-off gathering with Mass and a blessing on November 2, 2019 at St. Ladislas Church in Westlake from 9:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Ministry to the Incarcerated
The Diocesan LEAF Ministry will sponsor a Special Day of Reflection for those who love someone who is incarcerated on December 1, 2019, at the Jesuit Retreat Center from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  Come and enjoy a day of reflection, quiet prayer, a delicious meal and the celebration of Mass. There is no charge for the event.  Please RSVP to Judy in the Parish Life Office at 216-696-6525, ext. 3500 or email.   Please note the number of people who will attend.    

Presentations on the Catholic Church and Immigration
Members of the “Welcoming the Stranger” Committee and those who have recently visited at the US-Mexico border are eager to come to your parish or parish group to do a panel presentation on immigration.  This topic is of great concern to all and the reality touches our brothers and sisters who have come here as migrants and refugees seeking safety and life for their families.  If you are interested in scheduling a presentation, please call Sister Rita Mary Harwood, SND at 1-216-696-6525, extension 2200.

Catholic Renewal Ministries
The Community of the Risen Lord invites you to a Healing Service and Four Steps Retreat at Ss. Cosmas & Damian Church, 10419 Ravenna Rd., Twinsburg 44087.  The Healing Service will be on Friday, November 1st, starting at 7:00 pm.  The Retreat will be on Saturday, November 2nd, from 1 pm to 8 pm and Sunday, November 3rd, from 9 am to 5:30 pm.  Both events will be conducted by Bro. Jagath Nanayakkara from the Community of the Risen Lord, Sri Lanka.  The retreat will conclude with Mass with Fr. Michael Stalla as Celebrant.  These are free events. Food and beverages will be provided. For more information, please contact Sujith at 330-957-3147, Priyanthi at 330-212-8485, or Bob at 513-479-4517.

The Holy Spirit Prayer Center and the Living Word Ministry of Praise Prayer Group will host a Healing Mass & Service on Saturday, November 23rd, at 6:30 p.m. at St. Ambrose Church.  Fr. Bob Stec will be the Celebrant.  There will be Eucharistic Adoration following the Healing Mass and Denise Calabrese will lead the praise and worship time and healing prayer service. Visit or for more details.

Mary, Queen of Heaven and Earth Chapter of Magnificat, a women’s ministry modeled after the Visitation, invites you to a Breakfast, Saturday, December 7, 2019, at Walsh University, Barrette Center, 2020 East Maple Street, North Canton, Ohio.  Join us in a special time of fellowship and sharing.  Father Michael Denk will be the guest speaker.  Open seating.  Doors open at 8:30 a.m. with breakfast at 9:00 a.m.  There will be an optional Mass at 8:00 a.m. in Our Lady of Perpetual Help Chapel at Walsh University.  Cost:  $20 Mail-in / $21 Online; go to to print out a Reservation Form or to pay online.  Reservations cannot be accepted after November 30th.  For further information, call Joan Spieth at 330-933-8778.

Catholic Renewal Ministries will host a Healing Mass at Holy Family Church, 7367 York Rd., Parma, 44130, on Friday, December 13th.  Praise and Worship will begin at 7:00 p.m. and the liturgy will start at 7:30 p.m.  Fr. Bob Franco will be the celebrant.  Healing prayer teams will be available after Mass for individual prayer.  For more information, please contact Fr. Franco at 440-327-2201 or CRM at 440-944-9445. 


Monthly Grief Support
Catholic Cemeteries Association grief support groups will meet on Sunday November 17th at 3:00 p.m. at the following locations: Saint Joseph Cemetery, Avon (temporary trailer office); Holy Cross Cemetery, Akron (office); Holy Cross Cemetery, Brook Park (office), Calvary Cemetery, Cleveland (office), All Saints Cemetery, and our newest support location All Souls Cemetery, Chardon (office). The November topics will be ‘Thanks-Giving Grief and Preparing for the Holidays’.  A reservation is not required, but is appreciated.  Visit our website or contact Rhonda at 216-930-4866. 

Three new Sunday Grief Support Group locations: Calvary Cemetery, Cleveland (Miles Ave) started September 15th; All Saints Cemetery, Northfield started October 20th; All Souls Cemetery, Chardon starts November 17th.  If you are interested in participating at these new Grief Support Group locations, please contact Rhonda or call 216-930-4866. 

Cemetery Sunday Mass | November 3rd at 3:00pm
Join us in the celebration of Mass. Cemetery Sunday Mass is scheduled for November 3, 2019 at 3 p.m. Mass will be held at several cemeteries. Please click here for more details. For more information please email Rhonda Abrams or call 216-930-4866


Disability Services & Ministries

Journey to Bethlehem Mass | Saturday, December 7, 2019 at 11:00 a.m.
Join Catholic Charities Disability Services & Ministries for the 35thAnnual Journey to Bethlehem Liturgy on Saturday, December 7, 2019, at 11:00 a.m., with our celebrant Bishop Roger Gries.   Mass will take place at St Augustine Parish, 2486 West 14thStreet Cleveland. This liturgy for persons with disabilities, their families and friends is a beautiful Christmas celebration, with a light luncheon following.  For information: 216-334-2962; email Marilyn Scott; or go to our website.  All are welcome.


First Friday Club of Akron. Judge Joy Malek Oldfield of the Summit County Common Pleas Court. Friday, November 1, 2019 at Tangier Restaurant, 532 W. Market Street, Akron. More information here .

Theology on the Rocks
Theology on the Rocks – West| Monday, November 11that 7:00 p.m. | NEW LOCATION: VOSH, 1414 Riverside Dr., Lakewood | $12 per person | As we celebrate Veteran’s Day on November 11, we will hear from those that served in the Military.  Deacon Larry Gregg and Deacon Chuck Tweedell will talk to us about, “How to Rely on Your Faith in Very Difficult and Challenging Times.” To register and for more information click 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. 

Ignatian Currents: Healing Life’s Hurts Past and Present | Friday, November 1, 7:00 p.m. - Saturday, November 2, 4:30 pm. | Presented by Fr. Matt Linn, SJ. | Cost: visit our website for pricing options.

November Morning Prayer for Women  | Monday, November 18 from 9:30 - 11:00 a.m. | Led by Sr. Mary Ann Flannery, S.C.| Cost: $8

November Pre-Baptism Class for Parents | Monday, November 18 from 7:00 - 8:00 p.m. | Cost: $20/couple

Sr. Ignatia AA Women's Retreat: A Bridge to the Promises | Friday, November 29, 6:00 p.m. - Sunday, December 1, 11:00 a.m. | Presented by Kathy Fischer, Therese Martin Bendahan, Rebecca Nicholas and Sharon Seliskar | Cost: $170

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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