Diocese of Venice Crest


The Diocese of Venice in Florida

The Mustard Seed

  May 1, 2020


Office of the Bishop 
Bishop Frank J. Dewane, after consultation, announces the following:

Reverend Edward Martin, as Pastor St. Isabel Parish, Sanibel, effective May 1, 2020, at the same time he is relieved of his duties as Administrator of St. Isabel Parish, Sanibel.
Reverend Mark Yavarone, O.M.V, as Director of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Retreat Center, Venice, effective April 22, 2020, at the same time he is relieved of his duties as Assistant Director of Our Lady of Perpetual Retreat Center.

Pope Francis Prayer Intention for May - We pray that deacons, faithful in their service to the Word and the poor, may be an invigorating symbol for the entire Church.

Masses Temporarily Suspended Due to Coronavirus - While Masses and liturgical events in the Diocese of Venice remain suspended, Churches will begin to open for individual prayer and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.  Public gatherings for Mass or other Liturgical Services will still not be possible.  Restrictions regarding social distancing, sanitizing of hands and often-touched surfaces, as well as protective masks by visitors must be followed. 

Prayer Against Coronavirus - Prayer cards have been mailed to each Parish containing a Prayer against Coronavirus. You are encouraged to provide these to your parishioners whenever possible.  (CLICK HERE for the prayer in English and CLICK HERE for the prayer in Spanish.)

Year of Saint Joseph - On the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, March 19, Bishop Frank J. Dewane consecrated the Diocese of Venice to the care and protection of Saint Joseph in the context of the Coronavirus and announced a "Year of Saint Joseph" beginning March 19, 2020 through March 19, 2021. Saint Joseph, often referred to as the Protector, can be our protector too during this time of the pandemic. To pray a Novena to Saint Joseph please visit the Year of St. Joseph page on the Diocesan website or CLICK HERE for a copy of the Novena.  

Communications Department
Online Giving - For parishes who do not currently have an online giving possibility the Diocese of Venice is providing an online platform for the Faithful of your Parish to support their individual Parish at https://dioceseofvenice.org/ways-to-give/parish-donations-online/.  Should you wish to have a banner prepared directing the Faithful to the website please contact either Susan Laielli at laielli@dioceseofvenice.org or Gail Ardy at ardy@dioceseofvenice.org.

Live-Streamed Mass from Catholic Center - Please join Bishop Frank J. Dewane at 9:15 a.m. daily in the celebration of the Mass from the Catholic Center at www.dioceseofvenice.org. or visit https://www.facebook.com/DioceseofVenice/.

Televised Mass - The Diocese of Venice in Florida airs the televised Sunday Mass each week.  The Mass can be viewed at 9:30 a.m. on the CW Network in Sarasota, Manatee, Desoto, Charlotte, Hardee and Highland counties, and at 10:30 a.m. on FOX4 in Charlotte, Lee, Collier, Hendry, Glades and Desoto counties. The Mass is also available on the Diocese of Venice website at www.dioceseofvenice.org/tvmass. Please CLICK HERE for the Act of Spiritual Communion prayer.

Scam Alert - It has once again been brought to the attention of the Diocese of Venice that parishioners have received text/email messages from people pretending to be priests and requesting donations in the form of gift cards and/or wire transfers. The messages often greet the person by name and have the priests name in the closing signature of the message; this is a well-crafted and targeted attack on the Church across the country which has hit our Diocese again. These text/email messages are 'spoofed' fakes that should not be responded to or taken seriously by anyone. The best defense against this sort of scam is to raise awareness in the community and not respond or open any worrying attachments. It is Diocesan policy that no priest or staff within the Diocese request donations in the form of gift cards, PayPal, MoneyGram, etc.
There is already an established process in place on how parishioners can make donations and participate in the life of the Parish. Whenever a parishioner is worried about any request for money from the parish or a priest, they should immediately call their parish and under no circumstances should they respond to these scam requests.

Civilize It: Dignity Beyond the Debate - As Catholics, we have a long tradition of engagement in the political process as a means of putting our faith into action. We are called to bring the best of ourselves and our faith to the public square -- and yet today, many shy away from such involvement because our national and local conversations are filled with vitriol and harsh language. We must bear witness to a better way. You are invited to join the Civilize It! campaign launched by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), to promote civility, model love for neighbor, and build community. To take the pledge visit: https://dioceseofvenice.org/offices/other/2020-election-resources-english-and-spanish/ and to read the Election and Political Activities Guide released by the Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops.

"Witnessing Faith with Bishop Dewane" - Join Most Reverend Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice, for his monthly radio program on Relevant Radio. "Witnessing Faith with Bishop Dewane" can be heard at 8:30 a.m., Friday, May 29, on 1410 AM and 106.7 FM in Fort Myers. All can listen at https://dioceseofvenice.org/our-bishop/relevant-radio-podcasts. The program airs on the last Friday of each month.

Safe Environment Training - As part of the Safe Environment Program, the Diocese of Venice requires that all employees and those volunteers who work with children and/or vulnerable adults be fingerprinted and trained in Safe Environment. For further information, visit the Diocesan website at www.dioceseofvenice.org/safeenvironment. Report any abuse against minors to the Florida Department of Children and Families at 800-962-2873. To report abuse by Diocesan personnel or volunteers also notify the Diocesan Victims Assistance Coordinator, Susan Benton, at 941-416-6114. Please visit the Diocese of Venice website for scheduled training dates. (BULLETIN EDITORS: Please publish above text in parish bulletins.)

Office of Stewardship and Development
Help Your Parish - During these challenging times, Parishes face increased risk of financial shortfalls due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic and its effects on everyday life. Parishes depend on weekly financial gifts to continue their ministries, especially in this critical time of crisis. Please prayerfully consider an online donation to your parish by visiting https://dioceseofvenice.org/ways-to-give/parish-donations-online/. You may also contribute through your usual channels (e.g., envelopes, and through the Parish online giving option). Together we will navigate through this crisis, provide assistance to those in need, and secure the road ahead for the Parishes within the Diocese of Venice. Please continue to pray for the repose of those who have died, for the recovery of those who are sick, for the strength of healthcare workers and caregivers, as well as for an end to this health crisis. Thank you for your generosity.

Catholic Charities
Response to Pandemic - In response to COVID-19, Catholic Charities is focusing efforts toward food services, financial assistance, and tele-mental-health support for the 10-county area for clients in need. Food pantries will continue to distribute food while taking measures to protect staff from the coronavirus. Financial assistance teams have been established in each region to assess and support persons who need help making ends meet during this challenging time. Also, tele-mental-health services are offered by behavioral health teams through video conferencing and telephone services.

How to Help - Catholic Charities Diocese of Venice Inc. needs your financial support during its response to the COVID-19 pandemic. To help, please visit www.catholiccharitiesdov.org/donate or send a check to: Catholic Charities, Diocese of Venice Inc., 5824 Bee Ridge Road, PMB 409, Sarasota, FL 34233-5065.

Do You Need Help? - If you need assistance from Catholic Charities for food, financial assistance or tele-mental health counseling, please call the number for your area listed below between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday to Friday:
*    Sarasota/Manatee/DeSoto/Hardee/Highlands counties: 844-385-2407;
*    Charlotte/Lee/Hendry/Glades counties: 844-385-2423;
*    Collier County: 844-385-2404.

Food Distribution - Catholic Charities food distribution will take place only at the following times and locations. Please call the regional number for more information.
*    Mondays, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., Guadalupe Social Services, 211 S. 9th St., Immokalee;
*    Tuesdays, 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Judy Sullivan Family Resource Center, 3174 Tamiami Trail E., Naples;
*    Thursdays, 9:00 a.m. to noon, St. Margaret Parish, 208 Dean Duff St., Clewiston;
*    Fridays, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., St. Leo the Great Parish, 28360 Beaumont Road, Bonita Springs;
*    Fridays, 9:00 a.m. to noon, Elizabeth K. Galeana Pantry, 4235 Michigan Avenue Link, Fort Myers;
*    Saturdays, 7:00 a.m. tp 8:45 a.m., St. Michael Parish, 408 Heard Bridge Road, Wauchula.

Know Your Immigration Rights - The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has numerous resources outlining the rights of immigrants located on the website www.justiceforimmigrants.org. The USCCB, in partnership with CASA of Maryland, Detention Watch Network, and National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, offer a comprehensive "Know Your Rights!" brochure in English (CLICK HERE) and Spanish (CLICK HERE). (Editor's note: Parish staff is encouraged to print this brochure in English and Spanish to have as a resource.) Additionally, for a guide to better understanding immigrant rights in the workplace please visit: https://cliniclegal.org/resources/know-your-rights-workers.

Conozca Sus Derechos Migratorios - La conferencia episcopal de los Estados Unidos (USCCB) tiene diversos recursos detallando los derechos de los inmigrantes, los que podrá encontrar en la Web, www.justiceforimmigrants.org. La conferencia episcopal trabajando conjuntamente con CASA de Maryland, Detention Watch Network y National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, le ofrece un folleto comprensivo de "Conozca sus Derechos", en Inglés (Haga CLIQ AQUI) y en Español (Haga CLIQ AQUI). Adicionalmente, para obtener un mejor entendimiento de los derechos de los inmigrantes en el lugar de trabajo, por favor visite https://cliniclegal.org/resources/know-uour-rights-workers.

Online Bible Study LIVE - A Bible Study will be offered online through the Diocese of Venice Facebook Live on Tuesdays, beginning May 12 through July 28 using the program "Genesis to Jesus" from the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology. Each session will begin at 2:00 p.m. Visit https://www.facebook.com/DioceseofVenice/ and simply watch the live-stream video on the page. You will also be able to type in your questions and comments in real-time to participate from your own home. You do not need to have a Facebook account to watch the video but you do need to have an account to comment and ask questions!  (CLICK HERE for a flier.)

Respect Life
Spiritual Adoption Program - During this difficult time, please consider spiritually adopting an unborn baby. You can choose a name for your child and pray the simple prayer by Venerable Fulton J. Sheen each day through Christmas: "Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I love you very much. I beg you to spare the life of the unborn baby that I have spiritually adopted who is in danger of abortion."  Visit https://dioceseofvenice.org/wp-content/uploads/SPIRITUALADOPTIONS-.pdf for monthly fetal development information and Scriptures. For a prayer card in English, Spanish or Creole, contact Berdeaux@dioceseofvenice.org or 941-441-1101.

Hispanic Ministries
Sunday Mass in Spanish - Epiphany Cathedral will live stream the Sunday Liturgy in Spanish on Saturday evenings at 6:00 p.m. The Mass can be viewed at https://www.facebook.com/EpiphanyCathedral/.  Please CLICK HERE for the Prayer for the Act of Spiritual Communion in Spanish.

Misa dominical en español - La Catedral de la Epifanía transmitirá en vivo la Santa Misa dominical en español los sábados por la noche a las 6:00 p.m. La misa se puede ver en: https://www.facebook.com/EpiphanyCathedral/. HAGA CLIC AQUA.

Spiritual Exercises in Spanish - Ignatian Spanish Preached Retreats offered at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Retreat Center have been rescheduled and/or cancelled in compliance with guidelines due to Coronavirus. To date, only the Level 1 Retreat for Women is scheduled for the weekend of August 7-9, 2020.

Ejercicios Espirituales En Español - Retiros Predicados Ignacianos en Español ofrecidos en Our Lady of Perpetual Help Retreat Center han tenido que ser reprogramados y/ó cancelados cumpliendo con las pautas establecidas debido al Coronavirus. A la fecha, solo tenemos el Retiro Nivel 1 para Mujeres que está programado para el fin de semana del 7 al 9 de agosto de este año.

Youth and Young Adults
Do You Know a Young Person with a Drug Problem? - Perhaps you know of a young friend, neighbor or classmate who suffers from drug addiction and does not know where to turn for help. Drug Addicts Anonymous believes all individuals suffering from addiction have a right to access recovery, be self-sufficient and independent. Drug Addicts Anonymous provides an opportunity for long term recovery and positive change through a no-cost service. Based on a 12-step program, the focus is on the physical, mental and spiritual condition as a whole person; contributing to the individual's social reintegration in a dignified and efficient way. For further information on the program and services available, please visit www.daamerica.org or call 561-420-0930.

¿Conoce A Alguna Persona Joven Con Un Problema De Drogas? - Quizás usted sepa de algún amigo joven, vecino ó compañero que sufre de una adicción a las drogas y no sabe a quién recurrir por ayuda. Drogadictos Anónimos considera que todo individuo que sufre de una adicción tiene derecho a iniciar una recuperación, ser independiente y auto-suficiente. Sin embargo, hoy en día hay mucha gente joven afectada por la drogadicción, privada de un sentido de autovaloración porque no puede pagar por tratamiento adecuado ó; no tiene acceso a recursos de recuperación y apoyo. Drogadictos Anónimos le proporciona la oportunidad de una recuperación a largo plazo y un cambio positivo por medio de un servicio sin costo alguno. Basado en un programa de doce pasos, el enfoque es en la condición física, mental y espiritual de la persona, contribuyendo a la integración social del individuo de una manera digna y eficiente. Para información adicional de este programa y los servicios disponibles, por favor visite www.daamerica.org ó llame al 561-420-0930.

Calling All Young Adults - The Diocese of Venice offers many opportunities for young adults to build community. Through programs like Theology on Tap, intramural sports teams, and Parish-organized social events, there is something available for everyone in the Diocese. Young Adults (18-39) are encouraged to participate in these opportunities to enrich faith and make friends! If you have any Young Adult activities planned or would like to learn about them in your area, please contact Joshua Mazrin at mazrin@dioceseofvenice.org. Please note that in adherence to the Coronavirus restrictions all Young Adult activities have been suspended until a later date.

Diocese of Venice Events and Activities - In adherence with the Coronavirus guidelines, all events and activities have been temporarily suspended based on current guidance from the State of Florida.
Bradenton Food Pantry - The St. Joseph Parish Food Pantry, 2704 33rd Ave. W., Bradenton, is open and distributing food from 9:00 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday, 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Wednesdays, following all social distancing protocols. Cars will be directed through the parking lot and trunks will be loaded by volunteers in protective gloves and masks. Call 941-756-3732 if you have any questions. You do not need to be a regular client to receive food. To make a donation of money or food, please visit.https://www.stjoepantry.com/.
Free Rosary Repair Service - Send your broken rosaries in a padded envelope to Betty and Dick Holden, 7930 Estero Blvd. #502, Fort Myers, FL 33931. Rosaries will be repaired and returned within the week of receipt. Donations of old rosaries are also accepted which will be repaired and sent to missions. Include a note indicating repair or donation. For more details, please call 239-463-3993 or email holdenbnd@gmail.com.

Exclusive Right of Use - All content on the websites of the Diocese of Venice, all Parishes and Schools, including the Mustard Seed publication, and social media accounts are for the exclusive use of the Diocese and its entities. It is unlawful for outside entities and organizations to use this content for promotion or other purposes without the express written permission of the Diocese of Venice. For more information, please contact the Diocese of Venice Communications Office at 941-484-9543.

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