Saturday, January 31, 2009

Joe's Sales Pitch for Sign Up Sunday

Today is Sign Up Sunday! Today we are asking if you want to participate in the second 6-week session of Arise Together in Christ. So whether you are new to Arise and are planning to participate as a Lenten sacrafice, or if you are continuing from Season 1, we ask that you fill in the form that is located in your pew and put it in the collection basket. If you are not sure right now, you may also take the form and then drop it off at the rectory, or you can also fill out the form on line, on the St Mary’s parish web site.

Season 2 of Arise is perfect for Lent. Catholic teaching asks us to do something to bring us closer to God, something that makes us better prepared for Easter. Arise is an excellent opportunity for you to get involved and come to know other parishioners while deepening your faith during Lent.

Arise starts the week of Ash Wednesday and runs for 6 weeks. It will be completed before Easter. The meetings are 60-90 minutes, depending on the size of your group. Groups meet in the rectory, the lower church, at the Olive Branch, in people’s homes, and even at Forge Hill Assisted Living Center. We have groups that meet in the morning, afternoon and in the evenings of every day of the week. I’m sure we can accommodate your schedule.

It’s fun and a very worthwhile program. If there are any parishioners that participated in Season One here at mass, can you please stand up. And of those standing, can you please raise your hand if you are planning to participate in Season 2? Thank you! So you can see that it must be a worthwhile and rewarding program for this many people to sign up again. If you are considering participating in Arise and have not yet made up your mind, I welcome you to take a minute after mass to read the posters around the church. These are comments that were taken from the evaluations forms from Season I. You’ll read that people have deepened their faith, feel closer to God, and have grown closer with other parishioners. But more importantly, you’ll read that all their fears and anxieties they had about joining never happened. So, if you know any of the people that were standing, stop them after mass or give them a call, and ask them, or any member of the Arise Parish Team, any questions you may have.

If you participated in Season I and you wish to stay in the same group, you may do so; or, perhaps, like me, you want to meet new people, or your schedule may require you to select a different day or time, simply tell us by providing the information on the form. If you’re still on the fence and haven’t decided to join, because of a very busy schedule and you feel you can only attend some of the sessions, we WELCOME YOU TO DO SO! We learned from our evaluation forms that even attending a few meetings was a very worthwhile experience. If you’re still on the fence, and only want to attend 1 meeting to see what its like or to see if you will enjoy it, we WELCOME YOU TO DO THAT AS WELL! Just write that down on the form and let us know. We will be able to accommodate you. Once we gather all the forms and assemble the groups, you will be contacted with all the logistics for your group.

There is a renewed spirit within our parish that is starting to take hold. We are starting to feel it. And… We want YOU to be a part of it!! We want EVERYONE to be a part of it!

Just sign up and join the conversation. Start connecting your faith with your life, and start moving your faith into action.

And finally, whether you choose to participate or not, please pray for all of the Arise participants, that they may have the strength to take that first step toward God by filling out that form, and pray that they feel Him pulling them the rest of the way...

Friday, January 30, 2009

Workshop for Season II

This table has Mary Hazlett, Robbie Clary, Paul Clary, Ray Cadorette, and Katie McNeice listening very carefully.

Not all of St. Mary's Arise small group leaders attended this particular location. Workshops were held in different locations through out the diocese and at different times. Those that attended took up two tables. You will see Donna Strok and Nancy Rappa, hamming it up for the camera, Roland Robitaille looking thoughtful, with Donald Carpentier smiling behind him.

The new pastoral center in Braintree is beautiful. This is where the workshop for small group leaders was held. Here you can see Joan McGuire and Joe DePalo discussing theological differences.

The tables were circular which made for ease of interacting both with adjacent neighbors but also for group discussion within the entire table.

Not all of St. Mary's Arise small group leaders attended this particular location. Workshops were held in different locations through out the diocese and at different times. Those that attended took up two tables.
Now we can't wait for the session to start--week of Feb. 22nd.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Overview of Season Two

Change Our Hearts Season Two.
Here is the theme and scripture reference for each week in the six sessions:

Session 1: Repent and Believe the Good News!
Conversion is at the core of the Gospel message Conversion calls for a change of heart and mind Jesus' call to conversion is expressed in relation to God, to ourselves, and to others Conversion is the process of becoming Good News to one another
Matthew 6: 1-6, 16-18

Session 2: God's Beloved
Listening to Jesus, God's Beloved Son Being the Beloved of God Personal transfiguration Facing reality: in life, and in faith
Mark 9: 2-10

Session 3: Thirsting for New Life
Water, symbol of new life in Christ An encounter with Christ implies leading others to encounter him God thirsts for us
John 4: 5-30, 39-42

Session 4: From Darkness to LightFocus
We are called out of "night" into "day" Christ is the Light of the world Christians are called to live as children of the light
John 3: 1-21

Session 5: Bound Together by a Promise
The Covenant between God and God's people The Covenant is founded on love The Covenant is a two-way pledge of faithfulness, mercy and forgiveness The New Covenant fulfilled in Christ
Scripture Reading
Jeremiah 31: 31-34

Session 6: Into Holy Week with ChristFocus
Sharing in the great "conversion" of death into life Celebrating and making present the "triumph" of the cross in liturgy, and in life Sharing in the "Paschal Mystery" The "Paschal Mystery" as the foundation of our faith, our hope, and our love
Philippians 2: 6-11

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Small Groups

What's a typical group like?

The typical Arise group is a small Christian community. There are anywhere from 4-15 people who come together to share faith and to reflect on ways God is at work in their lives. Every group has 5 elements:

* prayer
* learning
* sharing
* support
* mission

We follow a workbook that has prayer and scripture readings. In our prayers we support each other and the parish. We may also discuss things to do together as a service to individuals or the parish or just go out together to socialize.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

What Faith Sharing is Not

Today, I went to another training session for Arise, Season II. Someone asked a question, which I didn't hear, but I certainly heard the answer. Faith Sharing does not have a response. It is one person talking. No one else expands, corrects, or reaffirms. It is different from bible study, and discussion.

Bible Study involves study. Learning background, and reading, and more importantly, right answers from wrong answers.

Discussion involves two are more people talking about a certain subject.

Faith sharing is simply one person stating how Jesus has affected them. No one else says anything. It's their story.

Arise Together in Christ is "faith sharing."

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Comments on Session One

A few comments from Session One:

I had never read the Bible before. It was very interesting to me and how I want to continue to read more.

I would encourage people to attend.

I always feel that God is in my presence.

I like everything that was presented.

Praise God!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Sign Up Sheet

Sign Up Sheet
Season 2 – Changing our Heart

Name : _______________________________________

Address : _____________________________________

Email Address : ________________________________

Phone Number : ________________________________

This is my 1st season of Arise ________

I did participate in Season 1 ______

If you participated in Season 1 and your Season 1 Group stays together, do you want to try to stay in that group?

_____ YES _____ NO _____ Does Not Matter

Who was your Season 1 Small Group Leader?

When is it convenient for you to meet? Please check more than 1, if possible.





Will you be a small Group Leader? _____ Yes _____ No

Will you host a meeting? ______ Yes _____ No

Please return this form to Joe DePalo at

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Last night, about twelve of our small group leaders went to a training workshop at the new Archdiocesan Pastoral Center. We were awestruck at the facility. It sparkled! Everything looked so high tech, efficient, and modern. I, for one, am glad we chose that particular workshop to attend.

Fr. Dave had to be at a bereavement, so he is going to a separate workshop, on his own.

This workshop was more focused on theology, than method. It was good. I like the history, Sr. Honora gave. The exercises were fun, too. I think Session II will be even better than Session I, if possible.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Novena and Fasting

Two ways to guarantee the success of any project is to pray and fast. These two traditions are common to all religions.

Fasting is a powerful spiritual discipline, through fasting and prayer, the Holy Spirit can transform your life. Fasting brings you into the presence of God every time you discipline yourself from doing what you will. You are reminded of why you are sacrificing. Your priorities will change and put in their proper perspective.

When you offer your sacrifice to God, you are imitating Jesus. Fasting is prayer. Fasting can be denying yourself some favorite food, or less food. It can also be activities: watching TV, blogging, driving, reading, emailing, playing cards, etc.

A Novena is a special way of praying. It is a devotion consisting of a prayer said on nine succssive days, asking to obtain special grace. Our Novena is asking God to bless our parish by bringing St. Mary's parishioners closer to Him. May Mary, our patron, intercede for us.

Please begin fasting and praying the Novena on January 23, 2009 and continue for nine days. Thank you and God bless you.

Novena for the Success of Arise in St. Mary's Parish
My Lord, You inspired Jesus to give everything
He had for our sake. Move St. Mary's parish by the
same Spirit to a new way of life. Inspire us to give
ourselves completely to You, to put You first in our lives
and to share our gifts, our time, our talent, our treasure,
to carry out Your will. Increase our faith, Lord, for we
desire to grow closer to You.
We ask this through Christ Our Lord.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Training Sessions on TV

The link is

This bring you to Catholic TV!

At the bottom, under the screen, where it says, search for videos, type in ARISE.

All the Arise videos appear, including training sessions. Click on the one you wish to view.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Arise Posters

The Arise Team made posters up from the comments expressed on the evaluation forms from Session I Arise Together in Christ, "Encountering Christ Today."

This is all in preparation for Session II 's, Sign Up Sunday, February 1, 2009. Session II's theme is "Change our Hearts."

Top left is a picture of Ray Cadorette hanging a poster. Ray has done a nice job trying to co-ordinate some kind of program with the elderly and shut-ins of our parish. I personally was fortunate enough to be present when he presented the program to the residents at Forge Park Assisted Living Center. Ray is hoping to present a program to the residents after their monthly Mass.

Beside the picture of Ray is an example of one of our posters (I think that one is Ray's). This one happens to be inside the glass frame in the entrance, at the front main doors to the church.

The very top center picture is well.............let's give it the title: "How many Arise Team Memebers does it take to hang a poster?"

Friday, January 16, 2009

Season Two Training for Small Group Leaders

Most of us are going to the Training Workshop at the Archdiocesan Pastoral Center in Braintree on January 20th. We are meeting at 6:00 PM on the street next to the rectory. Then we can caravan and gather to ride together. See you then. Here are some other workshops:

January 20 7-9:00 PM - Archdiocesan Pastoral Center, Braintree - English

January 21 7-9 PM - St. Zepherin, Wayland - English

January 22 7-9 PM - St. Joseph, Wakefield - English

January 24 10 AM - Noon - St. Michael, N. Andover - English

January 26 7-9 PM - Archdiocesan Pastoral Center, Braintree - English

January 27 7:15-9:45 PM - Archdiocesan Pastoral Center, Braintree - Portuguese

January 28 7-9 PM - St. Mary of the Annunciation, Melrose - English

January 29 7-9 PM - Archdiocesan Pastoral Center, Braintree - English

January 30 7:15 - 9:45 PM - Archdiocesan Pastoral Center, Braintree - Spanish

January 31 10 AM -Noon - Our Lady Help of Christians, Newton - English

January 31 10 AM - Noon - St. Francis of Assisi, Braintree - English

January 31 10 AM -12:30 PM - St. John, Peabody - Spanish

January 31 5-7:30 PM - St. Patrick, Lawrence - Spanish

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Groups

What's it like?

Most of the groups are nice and small: 4-8. There are a couple of larger groups, if you prefer: 10-12. We meet once a week in various places: Olive Branch, rectory, lower church, someone's home. It usually takes about an hour, but that depends on the size and make up of the group. There is a scripture reading, then faith sharing which is guided by questions that aid and suggest approaches. There is time for prayer requests where we pray for each other's needs. There are other suggestions for service that your group or some in your group may want to do.

There are groups meeting every day. There are some that meet in the evening and some in the morning. Most people can find some time that they can fit into.

Come on, give your faith a try.

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Arise Team

The Arise Team consists of twelve people, plus the pastor, Fr. Dave Callahan. Anyone may contact any one of us with concerns.

Christine Cadorette

Ray Cadorette

Robbie Cleary
Paul Cleary

Brenda Delasanta
David Delasanta

Joe DePalo

Faith Flaherty

Katie McNeice

Nancy Rappa

Michael Rein

Neil J. Roche

Sunday, January 11, 2009


The parish website has a link to this blog.

I find it odd that people are emailing me personally to comment on the blog.

I guess they're not use to reading blogs; you click on the word "comment", to comment.

But as long as people have their concerns satisfied, whatever means they use is fine.

Important Dates

February 1, 2009 Sign Up Sunday for Session II

February 22, 2009 Faith Sharing Begins

February 25, 2009 Ash Wednesday

Training for small group leaders is on-going during the month of January. For information on where and when the training sessions are, contact Joe DePalo: (508) 528-6609.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Arise Together in Christ

Arise is a three year program aimed at spiritual renewal. The Archdiocese of Boston is promoting this initiative. The program Arise Together in Christ is the brain child of Renew International, headquartered in N.J.

St. Mary's Parish, Franklin, MA has signed onto the Cardinal O'Malley's plan. We hope to deepen our relationship with Christ, grow in community, and reach out in service to others.

This blog is a response to one of the questions on our evaluation of the program. A place to comment and ask questions was requested and so here we are.