Diocese of Scranton News and Events

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Peter’s Pence collection to take place Oct. 4th.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Pope Francis delayed the annual Peter ’s Pence Collection from June 29, 2020, to Oct. 4. The purpose of the Peter’s Pence Collection is to provide the Holy Father with the financial means to respond to those who are suffering as a result of war, oppression, natural disaster and disease. It likewise provides the faithful with a tangible opportunity to not only empower the weak, defenseless and voiceless, but also sustain those who suffer. “In view of the current health crisis, the Holy Father has decided that, for this year 2020, the Peter’s Pence Collection, which traditionally takes place around the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, on June 29, will be transferred throughout the world to the Twenty-seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Oct. 4, the day dedicated to Saint Francis of Assisi,” Matteo Bruni, Director of the Holy See Press Office, said in making the announcement this summer.

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — By Carol Glatz Catholic News Service - Christians cannot stand idly by and watch as millions of people are deprived of their basic needs because of others’ greed, Pope Francis said.

“When the obsession to possess and dominate excludes millions of people from having primary goods, when economic and technological inequality are such that the social fabric is torn and when dependence on unlimited material progress threatens our common home, then we cannot stand by and watch,” he said Aug. 26 during his weekly general audience.

Christians must act together, rooted in God and united in the hope of “generating something different and better” that is more just and equitable, he said.

During a livestream from the library of the Apostolic Palace, Pope Francis continued a series of talks on the principles of the church’s social doctrine as a guide for healing and building a better future.

Focusing on the universal destination of goods, the pope said this is “the first principle of the whole ethical and social order.”

God entrusted the earth and its resources “to the common stewardship of mankind to take care of them,” he said, citing the Catechism of the Catholic Church (2402).

When God called on his children to “have dominion” over the earth in his name, the pope said, this was not to be interpreted as “a ‘carte blanche’ to do whatever you want with the earth.”

“No,” he said. “There exists a relationship of mutual responsibility between us and nature.”

Communities must protect the earth, take only what they need for subsistence and make sure the fruits of the earth reach everyone, not just a few people, the pope said.

A person should see his or her legitimate possessions “not only as his own but also as common in the sense that they should be able to benefit not only him but also others,” according to the Second Vatican Council’s Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (“Gaudium et Spes”).

In fact, the catechism says ownership of any property makes the “holder a steward of providence, with the task of making it fruitful and communicating its benefits to others,” he said.

“We are stewards of goods, not masters” or lords keeping them “selfishly for yourself,” he added.

The pope said the catechism also says, “political authority has the right and duty to regulate the legitimate exercise of the right to ownership for the sake of the common good.”

This “subordination of private property to the universal destination of goods,” he said, “is a golden rule of social conduct and the first principle of the whole ethical and social order.”

Property and money are meant to be instruments that serve development, he said.

However, people easily turn property and money into ends in themselves, he added.

When that happens, he said, the human being, who was made in the image and likeness of God, “becomes deformed” and becomes individualistic, calculating and dominating, instead of social, creative, cooperative and charitable “with an immense capacity to love.”

Social inequality and environmental degradation go hand in hand, he said, and have the same root cause: “the sin of wanting to possess and dominate one’s brothers and sisters, nature and God himself,” which was not God’s plan for creation.

The inequalities in the world “reveal a social illness; it is a virus that comes from a sick economy,” which is the result of unfair economic growth that disregards fundamental human values and leaves just a handful of people with more wealth than the rest of the world, he said.

“If we take care of the goods that the creator gives us, if we put what we possess in common in such a way that no one would be lacking, then we would truly inspire hope to regenerate a more healthy and equal world,” he said.     2020 NEWS, CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE, DIOCESE OF SCRANTON NEWS, NEWS


At the request of His Holiness, Pope Francis, the 2020 Pontifical Good Friday Collection is to be taken up the weekend of  September12 - 13, 2020.

Due to the pandemic caused by the Coronavirus, it was not possible to take up the Good Friday Collection dedicated to supporting Christians living in the Land of Jesus. Pope Francis has accepted the request to move this gesture of sharing that concerns the whole Church to Spetember 12/13. Why September 12/13? Because it is the Sunday closest to the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, which we celebrate with particular solemnity in Jerusalem. On this feast we remember how far the love of the Son if God has come for us: giving His life on the Cross for our salvation and reconciling us to the Father and to each other. This gives birth to a new humanity founded on solidarity and love. This collection in favor of the Holy Land is a small gesture of solidarity that the whole church is called to make in order to support through the Custody of the Holy Land, the Christian communities that are in the Holy Land and feel the weight and also the glory of the Cross of Jesus on their shoulders. It is Thanks to you, Christians throughout the whole world, who give so generously, that we will be able to continue take care of the Holy Places of Christianity, from the Holy Sepulcher to the Basilica of the Nativity and to the lesser known sanctuaries. We will be able to support the pastoral action of the parishes entrusted to us. We will be able to guarentee quality education and learning to more than 10,000 students attending our schools. We can help young families find a home. We will be able to assist Christian migrant workers to feel welcomed even though they are far from their homeland. We will be able to stay close to the populations affected by the war in Syria and the refugees now scattered in the carious countries in which we find ourselves living our mission.this is what we have tried to do during an eight centuries long history in the Holy Land and this is thanks to the help of Christians from all over the world. This what we hope to be able to continue to do thanks to the help of each of you! ~ Fr. Francesco Patton OFM Custo of the Holy Land

Diocese of Scranton Sets September 14 as Day of Prayer and Gratitude for Priests

Bishop Joseph C. Bambera has set Monday, September 14, 2020, the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, as a Day of Prayer and Gratitude for Priests in the Diocese of Scranton. The bishop invites all priests and the faithful to join together for Evening Prayer with the Renewal of Priestly Promises live at 4:00 p.m. via CTV: Catholic Television, the Diocese of Scranton website or any of the Diocese of Scranton social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube). During the COVID-19 pandemic, our priests have continued to do Christ’s work by offering the sacraments to the sick and dying, finding creative ways to serve parishioners and serve the poor through food pantries and personal outreach. We thank them for their priestly commitment and service.


Coronavirus Update - July 16, 2020

On Wednesday, July 15, 2020, Governor Tom Wolf announced new mitigation efforts for COVID-19.

The order includes a limitation of no more than 25 people at indoor events and no more than 250 people at outdoor gatherings. Please keep these numbers in mind for any parish-based events you may be planning.

In terms of indoor Mass capacity, Governor Wolf indicated that these limitations do not apply to religious institutions. As a result, there will be NO CHANGE to the current liturgical directives in the Diocese of Scranton.

The governor noted his changes are prompted by an unsettling climb in new coronavirus cases nationwide and concerns about a potential new surge in Pennsylvania cases.

I cannot stress strongly enough the need for every parish to follow all safety protocols that have been put in place for the protection of our parishioners, clergy and community. Put simply, none of us can take these procedures for granted because this situation can change very quickly.

While all liturgical directives can be found on the Diocese of Scranton’s website at, the most important liturgical directives include:

·         Everyone attending Mass is required to wear a mask except during Holy Communion

·         Pews are to be marked for social distancing and parishioners need to maintain six foot social distancing at all times while inside or outside a church

·         Properly sanitizing pews and other high-touch surfaces after each Mass

·         Encouraging anyone who is ill to stay home

I emphasize this continued vigilance so that we hopefully will not have to suspend public Masses once again. As you may be aware, some parishes in California and Arizona are closing again due to spikes in COVID-19 infections. Additionally, several states that border Pennsylvania, including Ohio and West Virginia are experiencing spikes in the number of cases being reported. I also hope that prudence now will allow our Catholic Schools to safely resume in-person learning next month.

At the same time, you may want to encourage parishioners to follow the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s recommendation to self-quarantine (and therefore not immediately attend Mass) if they travel to any states that are seeing a significant increase in cases.

I recognize these are challenging and frustrating times. Thank you for all that you are doing to keep the faithful of our parishes safe. As we have during the past four months, may we tap the blessings of our faith to sustain us in the days ahead.

Please stay safe and well.

Faithfully yours in Christ,

†Joseph C. Bambera

Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera, D.D., J.C.L.

Bishop of Scranton

Three men to be Ordained to Diocesan Priesthood June 27th

SCRANTON – Bishop Joseph C. Bambera will serve as ordaining prelate when three men are ordained to the sacred priesthood for service in the Diocese of Scranton on Saturday, June 27, at 10 a.m. in the Cathedral of Saint Peter. CTV: Catholic Television of the Diocese of Scranton will broadcast the ordination ceremony


Diocese of Scranton   Wedding Anniversary Mass June 14, 2020 

Bishop Joseph C. Bambera’s Reflection on George Floyd’s Death June 5, 2020

Guidelines for Safely Returning to Mass

Planning for the Future: What to Expect When Public Masses Resume

“As time unfolds, people coming back into normal activities is probably going to happen a little more slowly than some might expect. We will do all that we can to facilitate our return to Mass, but ultimately must provide for the safety of the people God has given to our care.” 
—Bishop Joseph C. Bambera—


Daily Masses From The Cathedral Of St. Peter

Private Masses will be celebrated daily in the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton, and made available on CTV: Catholic Television of the Diocese of Scranton.

On weekdays, the Mass will be broadcast at 12:10 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.

On weekends, the Saturday Vigil Mass will be broadcast at 4:00 p.m. and rebroadcast on Sunday morning at 10:00 a.m.

The Masses will also be streamed on the Diocese of Scranton’s website, made available on the Diocese of Scranton’s social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) and will be accessible on the Diocese of Scranton’s YouTube channel.

COVID-19 Resources

Center for Disease Control

Pennsylvania Department of Health - Coronavirus

Catholic Response to Outbreak of Coronavirus

World Health Organization

DO THE FIVE Help stop coronavirus

1 HANDS Wash them often

2 ELBOW Cough into it

3 FACE Wear A Mask in Public

4 SPACE Keep safe distance Practice Social Distancing

5 HOME Stay if you can



**Made for More: Visions from the Promised Land postponed until October 15, 2020.

Six parishes in Lycoming County are joining forces for a special event during Lent and people from north central and northeastern Pennsylvania and beyond are invited to attend.

Saint Boniface Catholic Church, 326 Washington Boulevard, Williamsport, will host Made for More: Visions from the Promised Land on Tuesday, March 31, 2020.

The event will feature Christopher West, best-selling author, speaker and teacher, along with folk/Americana musician Mike Mangione.

"Where do we come from and where are we going? If we don't have compelling answers to these questions, we have no orientation in our lives," West said.

West is known around the world for his teaching of Saint John Paul II's "Theology of the Body." He is co-founder of the Theology of the Body Institute. Written by the late Pope John Paul II, the Theology of the Body offers an in-depth biblical exploration of the meaning of our creation as male and female in the divine image.

"We're taking people on a journey through some particular words of Christ. We start with: 'They look but do not see.' So we've been trained to look at the world, but not see it; to look at the human body, for instance, but not see it. All of creation has a message, and Jesus says, 'Come and become one who sees.' He's in the business of giving sight to the blind," West added.

Makenzie Conner, director of youth ministry for Saint Joseph the Worker Parish, says the program will include live music, videos, images and the spoken word.

"It will give you a greater understanding of what we are celebrating as Easter people and what we're looking for in the resurrection of Christ," Conner said about the timing of the program, which will be right before Holy Week.

Organizers are hoping for several hundred people to attend.

"My hope and goal personally for this event is that people attend, are open minded about it, gain something from it and then use that later in their everyday life or parish life," Conner added.

The evening is being hosted by Saint Joseph the Worker Parish in Williamsport and co-hosted by Saint Ann, Saint Boniface/Saint Lawrence and Immaculate Conception/Saint Luke parishes in Williamsport; The Church of the Resurrection Parish in Muncy; and Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Montoursville.

"Every pastor is fully committed and fully involved in the process of bringing Christopher West and Mike Mangione and the Made for More project here to Williamsport," Conner said. "We wanted to be able to bring an experience, not just a speaker or workshop, but an actual experience!"

The event is open to everyone in the community, not just Catholic parishioners.

Made for More: Visions of the Promised Land is a ticketed event. The cost to attend is $25 and tickets may be purchased at

Tickets may also be purchased by contacting any of the sponsoring parishes - or by contacting Makenzie Conner at (570) 323-9456 or emailing


Stress in your marriage?

Do you feel alone?  Are you bored, disillusioned, frustrated or angry in your relationship? Do you experience coldness or conflict in your relationship? Retrouvaille is a program that helps couples through difficult times in their marriages.  This program has helped thousands of couples experiencing difficulties in their marriages.  If you are thinking about, or already are, separated or divorced, there could still be hope for you. For confidential information about, or to register for the program on May 29 – 31, please call 631-338-5413 or 570-207-2213, or visit the website at

Do You Want to Know More About the Annulment Process?

In the Diocese of Scranton, the annulment process is now more “user friendly” than you might expect, and there is no longer a processing fee.  

Please contact your pastor or the Diocesan Tribunal Office (570-207-2246) to begin a conversation.  It is possible to get clear answers to these questions and to renew your connection with the Church.


For a listing of all Diocesan and parish events, visit: Calendar 

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