Communique | April 2022

The full Communique is provided in both the customary multiple page format, as well as the digital format below.

The Communique collects important information provided by diocesan offices for parish ministry leaders. It also includes promotional materials for diocesan events and programs, where applicable.

April 2022 Print Communique (DOCX/Word) | PDF
Communique Attachments (DOCX/Word) | PDF 

Digital Format:

The full Communique – including attachments – is available below digitally. Announcements are listed by diocesan departments and office.

Announcements suitable or adaptable for parish bulletins are noted. Where applicable, graphic files are included: right click to save/download. Attachments (e.g. flyers) are also included within the notices for each office below.

Diocesan Events can also be found our Events Calendar.

Good Friday Collection for the Holy Land

Good Friday Collection will be held on April 15, 2022.  The pontifical collection supports Christians in the Holy Land.  Please see link below for more information.

Good Friday Pulpit and Bulletin Announcements

Holy Hour for Victims of Child Abuse | Child Abuse Prevention Month


Bishop David Bonnar will preside over a Holy Hour with Benediction for victims of child abuse on April 24, 2022, from 1:00-2:00pm, at St. Columba Cathedral. April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and Sunday, April 24 is also the Octave of Easter and Divine Mercy Sunday.

This year marks the twentieth anniversary of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People, written by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to address child sexual abuse in the Church in the United States. The Diocese of Youngstown’s Safe Environment Policy continues to implement the Charter, including safe environment training, compliance with regular audits, and the obligation to report known or suspected child abuse or neglect to the proper civil authorities.

In addition to our efforts to maintain a safe environment for children and youth and to stand with victims of child sexual abuse, you are invited to take time this month, including during this Holy Hour, to pray for victims of child abuse, all families and communities who are traumatized by the rippling effects of abuse, and for healing in our Church and in our world.

Safe Environment Policy

Safe Environment Page, Full Policy, and Resources | Background Check Requirements

1. Who needs to be compliant?

A. All active clergy, religious, seminarians, and persons in formation are required to be compliant.

B. All employees in parishes, schools, and institutions, including the Diocesan Central Offices, are required to be compliant regardless of their level of contact with children or vulnerable adults.

C. Any volunteer who has unsupervised access to a child or vulnerable adult, or who works directly with a child or vulnerable adult, or who is responsible for a child or vulnerable adult on behalf of the Diocese, must be compliant.

2. Compliance Requirements

A. Signed Authorization & Verification and Acknowledgement Form submitted to local Compliance Officer.

All clergy, religious, seminarians, persons in formation, and employees, and those volunteers who work with children or vulnerable adults, must review a paper or electronic copy of the Safe Environment Policy and sign the Authorization & Verification Form and Acknowledgement Form. A signed copy must be submitted to your parish, school, or institution Compliance Officer. 

B. Fingerprinting and Background Checks

All clergy, religious, seminarians, persons in formation, and employees, and those volunteers who work with children or vulnerable adults, must obtain a BCI or BCI/FBI background check.

Background checks are only valid for five years and must be renewed to maintain compliance. Any Webcheck location may be used and locations can be found at

Background check requirements and codes are included in this month’s Communique attachments. Background checks must be sent directly to the Safe Environment Coordinator at the Diocese:

Catholic Diocese of Youngstown
Attn: Safe Environment Office
144 West Wood Street
Youngstown, OH 44503

As of January 20, 2020, background checks completed on or after this date for other agencies, employers, dioceses, etc., are not valid for compliance in the Diocese of Youngstown unless a copy is also sent directly to the Safe Environment Coordinator by BCI&I.

C. VIRTUS Account and VIRTUS Protecting God’s Children Class

All clergy, religious, seminarians, persons in formation, and employees, and those volunteers who work with children or vulnerable adults, must create a VIRTUS account with the Diocese of Youngstown and complete the VIRTUS Protecting God’s Children in-service class.

Visit the Safe Environment page on the diocesan website for a schedule of VIRTUS in-service classes and to register in either English or Spanish. Until the threat of covid-19 has subsided, individuals are permitted to take the VIRTUS course online.

Child/Vulnerable Adult protection in-service courses from other agencies, employers, dioceses, Scouts, etc., are not valid for compliance in the Diocese of Youngstown.

3. Updating Information

Compliance Officers must submit updates for current and new employees and volunteers as they complete child protection compliance requirements on a Compliance Checklist. A person is not compliant until the Safe Environment Coordinator receives a Compliance Checklist noting the dates that the requirements were fulfilled. Visit the Safe Environment page on the diocesan website to find the Compliance Checklist. 

4. Reporting Child/Vulnerable Adult Abuse

If you or someone you know has been abused at any time by a priest, deacon, religious, seminarian, person in formation, employee or volunteer of the Diocese of Youngstown, or if you believe that abuse has occurred or is currently occurring, contact civil authorities and also Mr. Dominic Colucy, Safe Environment Coordinator/Victim Assistance Coordinator, (office) 330-744-8451 x293 or (response line) 330-718-1388.

Visit the Safe Environment page on the diocesan website to find our most up-to-date Reporting Requirements and Procedures in English and Spanish.

5. Questions or Concerns

For more information about the Diocese of Youngstown Safe Environment Policy, contact by mail: 144 W. Wood Street, Youngstown, OH 44503, phone: 330-744-8451 x293; fax: 330-744-5099; or e-mail:

Letters of Suitability

Please note that no priest or deacon may exercise ministry within the Diocese of Youngstown without being granted faculties/permission by the bishop.  It is the obligation of the pastor of the parish where ministry or speaking engagement will occur (or other responsible person outside a parish setting) to insure that the visiting cleric has obtained a letter of suitability.  Without such a letter, the Diocese, the parish or school and the pastor or president could become legally liable should any wrongdoing occur. 


The visiting cleric himself should ask his bishop or religious superior to send a letter of suitability to Bishop Bonnar.  Letters of suitability are to be sent from one bishop/superior to another, not directly to a parish, since it is the bishop who is responsible for determining a cleric’s suitability for ministry. 


If you have any questions, please contact Msgr. John Zuraw, Chancellor

Archives Office

Every diocese must, by Canon Law, maintain a place to safeguard materials which pertain to the spiritual and temporal affairs of the diocese, as well as its history.  These records are to be “diligently protected and systematically ordered (Canon 491.2).”  That’s the necessity of the archives.  There is also a beauty and a joy to our diocesan archives.  The Church beautifully describes the pastoral function of archives as “places of memory of the Christian community.” There is joy in preserving knowledge and understanding of the Church of Youngstown in order to clearly see our present and plan for our future.  We need the memory stored in our archives in order to tell truthfully the story of the people, the saints, the leaders and workers, who have shaped our communities.  The archives staff looks forward in the months and years ahead, to assessing, organizing, collecting, preserving, and making available the records and materials of our community memory.  If you have questions, please contact Joan Lawson, Archivist, at 330-744-8451 x290, or email

Canonical Services
Tribunal Inservice

Tribunal In-Service Available


The Tribunal staff has made available an ongoing, in-service for pastors, associates, deacons, religious, directors of religious education, religious education coordinators and counselors in order to prepare them in facilitating pleas for nullity for persons within the community whose marriages have broken down and who may be seeking a second union recognized by the Church.


The in-service focuses on preparation of case histories, compilation of documents, witnesses and determining of the appropriate grounds of nullity. Covered also are other types of nullity procedures.


Size of the in-service is in small groups of between 8-12 participants and generally runs approximately two hours. The in-service is offered at either the offices of the Tribunal of the Diocese of Youngstown or at a parish in the Canton area.

Interested parties, who have not already registered or who need a “refresher” should call the Tribunal at (330) 744-8451, ext. 252, to have their names placed on the registrant list. You would then be contacted when there are at least eight registrants for a particular location.


Catholic Charities Services
Catholic Charities


Catholic Charities, Diocese of Youngstown is accepting applications for a 2022 Fall internship.
This internship is funded by Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD). The CCHD intern will work directly with the Diocesan Director to promote education, training, outreach and participation of the Diocesan CCHD program.

Requirements: at least 18 years old, self-directed, motivated, and organized, a Catholic in good
standing with the Church, working knowledge of Catholic social teachings; available to work on-site (Youngstown) from September – December 2022, approx. 20 hours per week, 8am – 4pm (dates/times to be determined); must meet income eligibility guidelines: for example, an independent, self-supporting intern must earn less than $27,180/annually; a dependent intern in a family of four must have a combined household income less than $55,500/annually. Additional income guidelines may be found at

Applicants must be willing and able to travel (expenses paid) to Washington DC from June 1 – 3, 2022 for mandatory orientation with the National Office of CCHD.

Additional requirements: valid driver’s license, reliable transportation and auto insurance, background clearances and completion of VIRTUS training. Bi-lingual candidates preferred.
All applicants are subject to final approval by CCHD.

To apply, send resume with cover letter to Catholic Charities, 144 West Wood St., Youngstown, Ohio 44503. Apply or inquire by email to:

Deadline to apply is April 8, 2022.



We are excited to announce the return of our Annual Voice of Hope Dinner. This event celebrates the unity and identity of Catholic Charities’ Services in the Diocese of Youngstown, and raises funds to support our Basic Needs Assistance program. 

The re-scheduled event will be held on Thursday, April 28 at The Grand Resort Ballroom in Warren, Ohio. This year, we are honored to be joined by The Most Reverend David J. Bonnar, Bishop of Youngstown, who will provide a keynote address. We are also excited to recognize Very Reverend Monsignor Robert J. Siffrin and Mr. George Garchar with Voice of Hope Awards for their dedication, service and support of the ministry of Catholic Charities over the course of their vocations with the Church.

The evening will include music, cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, delicious food, a wine draw, a 50/50 raffle, and, most importantly, an opportunity to reconnect with friends from across the diocese.

Tickets are $75.00 each. Register online at



(Flyer to distribute)

Full Page Flyer: Spring Coloring Contest

The First Step to Service Program is partnering with the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) – the domestic anti-poverty program of the U.S. Catholic Bishops. CCHD has a complementary mission of educating on poverty and its causes, and is celebrating 50 years! CCHD works to break the cycle of poverty by helping low-income people participate in decisions that affect their lives, families, and communities. Catholic Charities provides help, and creates hope, while CCHD offers a hand up, not a hand out.

As a part of this program, Catholic Charities is calling children of all ages to participate in our spring “Care for Creation” coloring contest.  Children may participate in our Coloring Contest using the entry form included with this issue of Communique, through the parish, or through our local Catholic Schools. Contact Jennifer Lucarelli with questions at 330-744-8451, ext. 316 or email

Deadline for contest entries is April 30, 2022.



4. Deanery Needs Assessment 

The source of the Deanery Needs Assessment is Bishop Bonnar’s pastoral letter, Testify to the Light.  In this publication, Bishop has identified “Service” as a priority, and asks that each deanery conduct a needs assessment as a means of strengthening its efforts to help those who are in need.  The pastoral letter can be downloaded from the Diocesan website.

Thank you all for your time and attention to the Deanery Needs Assessment process.

Recently, parishes were provided with an Action Plan template to be completed and submitted to their local Deans by March 31, 2022.  The Deans will review action plans and submit them to the Diocese by April 8.  Some parishes have already agreed to work together on specific projects.

Here are some upcoming dates to make a note of –

Deanery Action Plan Submitted to the Diocesan Office:                   March 31, 2022

Service Opportunities to Launch at Parishes (where applicable):      April 2022

Leadership staff from the local Catholic Charities agencies and diocesan offices is ready to assist with deanery meeting facilitation, technical support, and advice.  Contact Rachel Hrbolich, Diocesan Director of Catholic Charities, at 330-744-8451 or for more information.

Catholic Relief Services

(Graphic and text for adaptation)

Lent is a time of repentance and of uniting ourselves to Christ during his 40 days in the desert. During this sacred season, CRS Rice Bowl—Catholic Relief Services’ Lenten faith-in-action program—invites us to reflect on how caring for our neighbor is caring for Christ.

“For I was hungry and you gave me food, thirsty and you gave me drink.”
(Matthew 25:35)

CRS Rice Bowl provides resources to bring Lenten spirituality to life for families, parishes and school communities, while continuing to connect Catholics in our diocese with our global human family. As Jesus teaches in the Gospel story of the loaves of bread and the fish, your small offering can feed many, and what may seem like a little, can actually be a lot.

This year, CRS invites you to journey to Madagascar, El Salvador and Timor-Leste to learn about the root causes of hunger and how communities—with the support of CRS and faith communities like yours—are making sure they have nutritious food to thrive. Through stories, videos and lesson plans, your local community can learn about the global issue of hunger and malnutrition and the Gospel call to feed the hungry. With prayer, fasting and almsgiving, we can continue Jesus’ mission to care for those in need.

We hear Jesus’s command to feed the hungry, whether he is multiplying loaves and fish for a crowd of thousands, or simply breaking bread with friends. Jesus invites us to share what we have with all people—in our local community and with our global human family.

All households are encouraged to participate in the 2022 collection. Seventy-five percent (75%) of this collection is forwarded to the national office, and twenty-five percent (25%) will remain here in
our Diocese to address issues relating to hunger. Rice Bowl materials are available in your local parish, or make a gift online at

If you need more information at the local level, please contact your CRS Diocesan Director, Jennifer Lucarelli at 330-744-8451, or

To read more about Catholic Relief Services Rice Bowl, please visit Stories of hope celebrate the many lives that our Lenten journey touches.

Thank you for joining your faith community to experience an enriched Lenten journey through CRS Rice Bowl. What we do for Lent we do for Life.



CRS Rice Bowl is the official Lenten program of Catholic Relief Services, the official overseas international relief and development agency of the United States Bishops. It was created in 1975 with the goal of entering into solidarity with our brothers and sisters overseas through prayer, fasting, learning, and giving. This Lenten program is conducted in Catholic parishes and schools throughout the Diocese of Youngstown. Seventy-five percent of the funds raised are sent to CRS for international development projects; twenty-five percent of CRS Rice Bowl supports local programs and initiatives that address hunger and poverty.

Local groups and organizations are encouraged to apply for grants that will alleviate hunger and poverty in your community. Guidelines are as follows:

1. The project requesting funds must be operated within the geographical boundaries of the Diocese of Youngstown.

2. Projects must be consistent with Catholic moral and social teaching.

3. Recipient must be a not-for-profit organization.

4. The project requesting funds should make an immediate impact to alleviate poverty and hunger within the Diocese of Youngstown.

5. Grants are made on an annual basis only.

Completed applications (including required attachments) must be submitted by July 31, 2022.

Grants will be awarded by September 15, 2022.

If you would like to receive an application, please send your request via email to and an application will be returned to you.

Prison Ministry


Full Page Flyer for Kolbe Gathering (or see text below)

Kolbe Gathering

Kolbe Gathering is a place for the formerly incarcerated and their families to join with parish-based volunteers in spiritual support and fellowship. Embrace spirituality in prayer, music, scripture reading and fellowship, all in a welcoming and warm environment.

St. Maximilian Kolbe is Patron Saint of prisoners and drug addicts.  He was martyred at Auschwitz Concentration Camp.

For further information contact William Barber, Coordinator for Prison Ministry, at 330.235.3920.

Communications and Media Offices
Catholic Exponent

Publication dates and special sections for The Exponent are as follows:

April 1 (Special Section: Death and Grieving)
April 15 (Special Sections: Volunteerism / Easter)
April 29 (Special Sections: Priest Jubilarians / Summer Fun, Travel, & Pilgrimage)
May 13 (Special Sections: Wedding and Marriage / Summer Fun)
May 27 (Special Sections: Seniors-Living 50+ / Ads for Grads)

The normal deadline for each issue is 12 days before the publication date. We try to get late information into the issue, but are sometimes limited by lack of available space.


The Catholic Exponent is your source for informative, reliable, and doctrinally sound news stories, features, and commentary – keeping you up to date on local events such as Catholic school Advent programs and parish events, as well as the news of the Church across the country and around the globe.

To subscribe, call 330-744-5251 or email to request subscription information. Thank you for supporting your diocesan newspaper.

Catholic Telecommunications Network of Youngstown (CTNY)

1. Lutheran-Catholic Covenant Live Stream
Live Stream the Lutheran-Catholic Covenant Service from St. Columba Cathedral on Sunday, April 3 at 6:00 p.m. with Bishop David Bonnar and Bishop Laura Barbins, at 


2. Chrism Mass
Live Stream of the Chrism Mass from St. Columba Cathedral on Tuesday, April 12 at 10:30 a.m. at 


3. Radio Programming – Wineskins


Wineskins airs every Sunday at 7:30 a.m. on WKBN 570 AM in Youngstown, WRQX 600 AM in Salem at 7:30 a.m., WILB AM Canton 1060/WILB FM 89.5 Youngstown/WILB FM 94.5 Canton at 9:30 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.  Listen to Wineskins on the diocesan website by going to the “News and Media” bar, then, click on “Wineskins Audio Library.” 

The Current Issue Segment will feature:  April 3:  Fr. Jim Korda speaks with Fr. Michael Balash in the Bishop’s Corner; April 10:  Fr. Jack Lavelle on Death and Grief in the Life Issues segment; April 17:  Jennifer Lucarelli on Catholic Charities; and, April 24:  Fr. Jim Korda talks with Nancy Bird from the First Friday Club.

Lou Jacquet, from St. Brendan Church in Youngstown, will tell us about the Saints celebrated this month in a new series called Obscure Saints: April 3: Anthony the Great; April 10: Sacred Triduum; April 17: Euthymius the Great; and, April 24:  St. Simeon.

The Interview Segment will include:  April 3: Fr. Jim Korda speaks with Rabbi Joseph Schonberger, Part II; April 10: Fr. Jim Korda interviews Rabbi Schonberger, Part III; April 17: Fr. Jim Korda interviews Jill Valentic, Part I; and, April 24:  Fr. Jim Korda interviews Jill Valentic, Part II.

This month’s Music Segment is from the CD “As I Pray,” by Lorraine Hess.

Sr. Mary McCormick, OSU, Major Superior of the Ursuline Sisters of Youngstown, will give her reflections on the Sunday Scripture Readings: April 3: Fifth Sunday of Lent; April 10: Palm Sunday, Passion of the Lord; April 17: Easter Sunday, Resurrection of the Lord; and, April 24: Second Sunday of Easter, Divine Mercy Sunday

Office of Media Relations

1. Parishes and other diocesan entities who receive inquiries from the media are asked to consult with Justin Huyck, Coordinator of Media Relations: (330) 744-8451, ext. 320;


2. Please also kindly inform the Office of Media Relations when your programs, initiatives, and ministries are featured in the news media.


3. The Office of Media Relations is available to consult on news releases regarding events and initiatives. Processes will continue to be developed to assist these efforts.

Office of Social Media

1. Private Facebook Group for DOY Social Media Networking


A private Facebook group ongoing networking regarding social media can be found at:


This is a great place to share resources, ask questions and meet others around the diocese doing social media for their parishes, schools, offices and agencies. You can also share upcoming events that you’d like to invite others to so they can share in social media as well. Note: This is a key way the Social Media Minister is beginning to share insights as to avoid overwhelming contacts email boxes.


2. Social Media Helpful Hint of the Month – Make your own “Stock” Photos


Last month, we discussed using royalty-free images as to avoid breaking copyright laws.  This month, let’s consider making your own stock-file of photos to use with posts, to created memes, and for use with publicity of future events.  Grab your camera (or invite a photographer to donate a few hours of time) to take a number of pictures that you can store on your computer for use as needed.  Perhaps looks back over the 2019 calendar to see what events typically happen over a season or a year at your parish, school or agency to map out what types of images it would be helpful to have on hand.  Here is just a suggested list to get you started:


Parishes:  the outside of your Church, the main Church doors, any outdoors grottos or statues, your parish sign, close ups of any building ornamentation, close ups of indoor ornamentation, statues, stained glass windows, the sanctuary, the altar, the Easter candle, the tabernacle, the holy oils, mosaics and other art, some pews from the front, some pews from the back, a confessional, the Baptismal font, a holy water basin, votive candles, a hymnal, choir loft/section, plates of food related to events (spaghetti, pancakes, doughnuts, pierogi, etc.)


Schools: the outside of your school, the main school doors, any outdoors grottos or statues, your school sign, close ups of any building ornamentation, close ups of indoor ornamentation, statues, stained glass windows, your chapel (the sanctuary, the altar, the candles, the tabernacle,  mosaics and other art, desks, cafeteria, gym, auditorium, hallway, library, school banners, etc.


Agencies:  whatever is unique and whatever shows your connection to our Catholic faith.  Cemeteries for example can take photos of the chapel, unique grave markers, historical graves, bare trees in winter, blooming trees and flowers  in spring, full-bloom trees and flowers in summer, changing leaves in fall, the gates/entrance, a road, bench, visiting birds, a hearse, lovely natural elements.  A service office might want photos of the crucifix, statues, etc. that decorate the main entrance and hallways, as well as the outside of your building, sign, and doors. 


Reminder:  when including people in photos, particularly when their faces are clearly visible, get their permission to their images.  Written release forms are preferred when using photos of minor children (especially if also using their names in a post).  For a “Permission to Publish Consent Form template, please see form F21 at:


Happy picture taking!




Clergy and Religious Services
Office of Clergy Services

1. Lenten Regulations

All Catholic are encouraged to participate in the traditional Lenten practice of prayer, sacrifice, and almsgiving. Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of fast and abstinence – one full meal and two smaller meals for persons 18 thru 59 years of age; no meat for persons 14 years and older. All Fridays during Lent are days of abstinence – no meat for persons 14 years and older. There is no obligation to fast during the weekdays of Lent; however voluntary acts of self-denial are encouraged.


2. Chrism Mass – April 12, 2022

The Chrism Mass will be celebrated on Tuesday, April 12, 2022 at 10:30 a.m. in Saint Columba Cathedral.  All clergy are invited to concelebrate.  There will be no attendance restrictions this year.  Information will be sent to all clergy in the coming weeks.


3. Funeral Arrangements and Planning Guide

All priests recently received a revised Funeral Arrangement and Planning Guide and were asked to update and revise their funeral arrangements.  Please return this guide to Office of Clergy Services as soon as possible.


4. Priest Anniversary Celebration ~ Save the Date!


The annual Priest Anniversary Celebration will be on Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at Immaculate Conception Church, Ravenna.  The evening will begin at 5:30 p.m. with Solemn Evening Prayer followed by Social Time and Dinner.  Invitations will be sent to all priests in April.



5. 2022 Notre Dame Preaching Conference


The 2022 Marten Program Preaching Conference, “Living in the Light of the Word: Enlivening the Scriptural Imagination,”will be held on June 20-22, 2022 at the University of Notre Dame.      More information and registration materials can be found at:

Early Registration $300.00 through April 30, 2022.  After May 1, 2022 – $350.00.


Office of Vocations

1. Call to Orders:

With great joy and praise to our Savior, the Diocese of Youngstown would like to announce the Call to Orders of some of our seminarians by the Most Reverend David J. Bonnar.

On Saturday, June 4, 2022, at 10:30am in St. Columba Cathedral, Bishop Bonnar will ordain as Transitional Deacons:

  • Mr. Brook Benedict
  • Mr. Robert England
  • Mr. John Rovnak
  • Mr. Frederick Schlueter

On Saturday, June 18, 2022, at 10:30am in St. Columba Cathedral, Bishop Bonnar will ordain to the Priesthood:

  • Deacon Connor Hetzel
  • Deacon Francisco Ogbonna


2. Seminarian Posters and Prayer Cards

Please contact the Vocations Office when you would like more copies of the 2021-22 Seminarian Poster or Prayer Card.


3. Vocation Director at Your Parish / School

Diocesan Vocation Director Fr. Scott Kopp has a weekly cycle of visiting our 6 Catholic high schools. If you have a special youth ministry, parish, retreat, or vocational event, consider asking him to attend or speak. 330-744-8451 or by email at


4. Come and See Weekends

Weekend visits to the seminary are being put on hold for the year because of COVID and construction at the Cleveland seminary.


5. Seminarian Visits to Your School or Parish

Please remember all of the seminarians we have currently studying in our diocese. They are all willing and available to come and speak at your parish or school. To schedule one, please contact Father Scott Kopp at 330-744-8451 or by email at


6. Seminary Field Trips

Field trips to the seminary are being put on hold for the year because of COVID and construction at the Cleveland seminary.



7. Vocation Intercessions and Bulletin Blurbs for April

See: Communique Attachments (DOCX/Word) | PDF 

These are vocation intercessions and bulletin blurbs for the month of April.  Please use these in your bulletins and at Mass to help promote vocations to the priesthood and religious life in your parish community and school.



8. Vocations Social Media

Website:  |   Facebook: doyvocations

Office of Vowed Religious

Religious Jubilarian/Conference Day – Save the Date

We invite all religious to reserve Saturday, October 22, 2022 and to celebrate with religious jubilarians of 25, 50, 60 years, and beyond, at Holy Family Parish in Poland.  A social begins at 12:45 p.m. followed by dinner and Sister Regina Rogers, OSU, presenting on the history of Religious Life in the Diocese of Youngstown.  Bishop Bonnar will celebrate Holy Mass at 4:00 p.m.   Brochures and Registration Forms will be sent at a later date.

Development and Stewardship Offices (Finance Department)
Office of the Annual Diocesan Appeal

2022 Annual Diocesan Appeal

We continue throughout this Lenten season to promote prayerful participation in the 2022 Annual Diocesan Appeal: One in Hope, One in Mission.  Each parish has received the Leadership Manual, which is also posted in the Parish Toolkit at the bottom of the appeal page of the diocesan website at  In this book are various bulletin blurbs and pulpit announcements.  Additional information will be forwarded regarding Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday, as well as the weeks of Easter leading to the celebration of Pentecost, which is the end of the initial solicitation phase of the appeal. 


Thank you to everyone for your leadership in promoting the appeal and encouraging members of our parish to prayerfully respond to the appeal.  For more information about the appeal, please contact Father Lavelle, the Interim Appeal Director, at, or for pledge assistance, Peggy McMahon at  Weekly updates will also be available on Thursday afternoons in the Parish Toolkit at the bottom of the appeal page at

Office of Development and Stewardship

1. Endowments with the Diocese of Youngstown Foundation

You are invited to Leave a Legacy for your parish, Catholic school, or Catholic ministry by establishing a perpetual endowment fund within the Diocese of Youngstown Foundation. The income from these funds is available to the designated parish, school, or ministry, and is restricted to the purpose(s) which the donors establish. For questions about the Diocese of Youngstown Foundation, please contact Pat Kelly at


2. Stewardship Thoughts for Parish Bulletins

April 2022 Vocations and Stewardship Thoughts for Parish Bulletins

See Communique Attachments (DOCX/Word) | PDF 

Pastoral and Educational Services
Office of Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs


1. Lutheran-Catholic Covenant – April 3 Evening Prayer

The Lutheran-Catholic Covenant Commission invites you to an Ecumenical Evening Prayer celebrating the Lutheran Catholic Covenant, Sunday, April 3, 2022, 6:00p.m. at St. Columba Cathedral, Youngstown.  Bishop David Bonnar (Roman Catholic Diocese of Youngstown) is presiding, and Bishop Laura Barbins (Northeastern Ohio Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America) is preaching at this prayerful recommitment to the Covenant between our two bodies.

The Covenant signed October 29, 2000, between Catholic Bishop Thomas Tobin and Lutheran Bishop Marcus Miller confesses the faith shared by Lutherans and Catholics and dedicates them to prayer, study, and action for Christian unity. 

Full Page Flyer (PDF)

Note: In addition to publicizing, we invite clergy and ministry leaders to join us in prayer as we launch the next era of our covenantal relationship. For more information, Catholic leaders are invited to please contact Catholic co-convenor Thomas Sauline, D.Min. ( or Rev. Shawn Conoboy, Ph.D. (, Diocesan Director of Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs.


2. Lutheran-Catholic Covenant Commission Lent 2022 Resource

Lent 2022 Resource: Lutheran-Catholic Covenant

The Lutheran-Catholic Covenant Commission invites Catholics and Lutherans to use the Lent 2022 Resources for Discussion and Reflection for personal or group prayer. You are welcome to reprint the copy ready edition of this ecumenical resource for praying the Sunday Readings Lent Cycle C.  

Office of Faith Formation and Lay Ecclesial Ministry

1. Considering Preparation for Ministry as a Lay Person?


All Christian persons by nature of their Baptism, and strengthened by Confirmation, are called to pass on the faith with a zeal for bringing others closer to Christ and the Church.  Some persons have a particular call to participate in the work of the church as professionally prepared lay ecclesial ministers.  These persons share responsibility for various areas including pastoral care, adult faith formation, youth and young adult ministry, family and children catechesis, sacramental preparation, liturgy, music, and evangelization.  If you have ever wondered about becoming prepared for a parish ministry position, please contact Barbara Walko for assistance in discerning academic and experiential qualifications with a possible path toward meaningful and life giving ministry.



2. Pastors Seeking Parish Ministers


Pastors hoping to hire new or additional staff persons in the areas of adult faith formation, youth ministry, young adult ministry, children and family formation, pastoral ministry, and other key areas of parish life are asked to contact Barbara Walko for assistance.  The office will provide assistance in posting available positions, screening applicants, preparation of a position description and compensation packages.



3. Ministry Preparation: Earn a Master of Arts degree locally


Look into LIMEX!  Loyola University New Orleans offers degrees and certificates in Ministry and Theology in an Extension Program. We are still gathering a local learning group for 2022, and it’s not too late to enter the process.  For additional information, contact Margie Hynes in the Office of Faith Formation and Lay Ecclesial Ministry, 330-744-8451 x296, or email  



4. Resources to Implement Bishop Bonnar’s First Pastoral Letter


With Bishop Bonnar’s letter, “Testify to the Light” many parishes may embark on new or enhanced efforts in the five areas he has prioritized.  The Office of Faith Formation and Lay Ecclesial Ministry has curated a list of resources which may be reviewed on the home page of  Please feel free to contact the staff of the Office of Faith Formation and Lay Ecclesial Ministry to borrow these and other resources to develop Faith Formation and Pastoral processes.  The staff is anxious to help parishes design new initiatives to respond to the needs in the diverse church communities.



5. Easter Small Group Resources


Please visit to explore the variety of resources appropriate for small Christian communities during the season of Easter.  Many persons are eager to “do” something or learn a new spiritual exercise and may springboard to an Easter season sharing group.  A variety of topics and many “how to” ideas are readily available.


6. New Library Resources


Being Claimed by the Eucharist We Celebrate. Fr. Scott P.Detisch. Liturgical Press, 2022. The eucharistic celebration is a vital part of the life and ministry of every priest and deacon. At the same time, the Eucharist is also a compelling narrative of all that Christ is for the people of God. In this book, Fr. Scott Detisch explores a spirituality of holy orders through the eucharistic actions of Christ: take, bless, break and give. These are more than ritual actions the deacon or priest performs within the liturgy. As they did for Jesus Christ, these eucharistic words define who a priest or deacon is for God’s people.


Walking Together: A Primer on the New Synodality. Moira McQueen. Twenty-Third Publications, 2022. The Second Vatican council (1962-65) shone a light on the idea of all the baptized – the whole People of God – walking, working and discerning together to further their mission as Christians. More recently, Pope Francis has brought the Church’s teaching in this area into sharper focus, calling synodality “an essential dimension of the Church.” This user-friendly guide explores this fascinating topic while preparing, encouraging, and guiding readers to take part in diocesan and regional consultations leading up to the Synod on Synodality in Rome 2023. Through this global conversation process, lay voices can be an important part of the conversation with official Church leaders as we shape the future Church together. 


Faith Talk: Having Conversations that Matter with Youth. Robert J. McCarty. DMin. Saint Mary’s Press, 2018. A guide for the shift from an emphasis on telling young people what to believe, to focusing on accompanying young people on their faith journey. Dr. McCarty provides a vision, a methodology, and practical tools for this shift, starting by deeply listening to young people’s experiences, their questions, and their concerns about life, spirituality, and the Church.


Lifelong Faith: Formation for All Ages and Generations. John Roberto. Church Publishing Inc., 2022. Vibrant lifelong faith formation can renew and revitalize faith across generations and contribute towards a thriving congregation that lives its mission. Using the seven elements outlined in this book, churches will create a dynamic and vital plan that can be customized to meet the needs, interests, and challenges we face today and nurture the spiritual growth of all ages. With current research, clear examples, and tools for design and evaluation, Lifelong Faith is a practical, thoughtful, and comprehensive guide for clergy, educators, and lay leaders who seek a fresh, holistic approach to Christian education and discipleship.



7. Religious Education Certification for Catechists and Teachers


A listing of the Religious Education Certification Opportunities for Catechists and Teachers is available at Catechist Cafe.  Core courses, general courses, parish-sponsored, college/university-hosted, and other regional organizations are included in the list of online and onsite sessions. Visit . (CHECK THE PAGE OFTEN FOR LINKS TO FREE WEBINARS and ONLINE EVENTS FROM CATHOLIC UNIVERSITIES, ORGANIZATIONS, AND PUBLISHERS. NEWS IS ADDED WEEKLY.)


These diocesan online courses will begin soon:


Hope: A Virtue for Our Times, GENERAL course, 6 hours 
April 25 – May 16, 2022

Online facilitator: Joan Lawson

Fee $25, includes book 


The Holy Spirit and Spiritual Gifts, GENERAL course, 12 hours 
April 25 – June 6, 2022

Online facilitator: Margie Hynes

Fee $30, includes book 



8. RCIA Summer Learning Opportunity


“Evaluating and Revitalizing the RCIA in Your Parish 2022” is the theme of the National Gathering on Christian Initiation, a conference for catechumenal ministers and pastoral leaders.  Sponsored by Liturgical Training Publications, the conference is scheduled for July13 and 14, 2022 in Chicago, Illinois.  Additional information and registration is available at:

Office of Pro-Life, Marriage, and Family Life

1. Marriage Preparation Engaged Couple Retreat Day

The next diocesan-sponsored one-day marriage preparation retreat days for engaged couples will be held Saturdays, April 9 and April 30 both in the social hall at St. Columba Cathedral. Reservations are required. Registration information may be found at; go to the “Ministries” drop-down menu and press on “Pro-Life, Marriage & Family Life.”

For more information on this, and other opportunities for marriage preparation formation, contact or 330-744-8451, ext.272.



2. Culture Project: The Dignity of Human Life

Men and Women United for Life, a pro-life group in the Diocese of Youngstown, together with the diocesan offices of Youth & Young Adult Ministry and Pro-Life, Marriage & Family Life is sponsoring an evening of Prayer and Presentations on Sunday, April 24, at 6:30 pm in St. Charles Church, Boardman (7345 Westview Dr.). Young adult missionaries from the Culture Project will present a multimedia presentation on the Dignity of Human Life. Fr. Ryan Furlong will lead the congregation in prayer and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. Praise music will be led by Christian Pinto. All teens and adults are welcome to attend. For more information contact

The Culture Project is an initiative of young people set out to restore culture through the experience of virtue. You can find out more about these dedicated young adults by going to their website,


3. Wedding Anniversary Celebration – Date Changed to May 8

The Diocese of Youngstown is sponsoring a Wedding Anniversary Celebration on Sunday, May 8, 2:00 p.m. at St. Columba Cathedral in Youngstown, honoring couples observing their 25th, 40th, 50th and over wedding anniversaries in 2022.

The Wedding Anniversary Celebration will include Mass with Bishop David J. Bonnar, renewal of marriage vows, a personalized certificate for each couple and a reception for the couple and their families. Couples may opt to attend the Wedding Anniversary Celebration Mass in person at St. Columba Cathedral or they may participate remotely via livestreaming on the diocesan website at and their certificate be mailed to them. Limited spaces are available for couples at the cathedral. Couples must make reservations in advance for this event by contacting their parish office as soon as possible, but no later than April 6.

Registration information for the May celebration was sent to parishes the beginning of March. A second anniversary celebration will take place at the Basilica of St. John the Baptist Church in Canton on Sunday, October 16, 2022; at 2:00 p.m. For more information contact 330-744-8451ext.272 or



4. Memorial Service for Miscarried & Stillborn Children

If you know someone who has suffered the loss of a child through miscarriage or stillbirth, please invite them to one of the following Memorial Services on Sunday, May 15, at 2:00 p.m. in the chapels at:

– Calvary Cemetery, Youngstown (248 Belle Vista Ave.), or

– Calvary Cemetery, Massillon (3469 Lincoln Way E.).

Parents, family, grandparents and others are encouraged to attend. Sponsored by the Diocese of Youngstown Office of Worship, Office of Pro-Life, Marriage and Family Life, and Catholic Cemeteries. For more information call 330-744-8451 ext. 272.



5. Save the Date:

Faith & Family Festival on Sunday, September 25 at Walsh University.

For more information contact Dave Schmidt at or 330-744-8451  ext.272.



6. Intercessions for Life and Pro-Life Bulletin Briefs

Recommended intercessions and bulletin briefs for March, prepared by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities, may be found at



7. Project Rachel Outreach – March Message for Bulletin/Newsletter:

There is no sin, including abortion, that is greater than God’s forgiveness. There is Hope and Healing available. For CONFIDENTIAL help text or call Project Rachel of Northeast Ohio at 330-360-0430 or go to



8. Pray for Dobbs

Although the U.S. Supreme Court has already heard the oral arguments in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities continues to encourage participation in “Pray for Dobbs.” This Supreme Court case could impact the fate of millions of preborn children and their mothers, and their decision is not expected until this summer. Join thousands of Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant Christians uniting in prayer and fasting! Learn more and sign up for updates at

The website also contains resources, such as announcements, images, flyers and action ideas to promote this unique opportunity to unite in prayer.


9. New Resource for Ministering to Families

The Office of Pro-Life, Marriage and Family Life had the pleasure of collaborating with neighboring dioceses to create Family Love: A Vocation & A Path to Holiness A Toolkit to Celebrate Families. This resource for parishes may be helpful as we draw close to the Tenth Meeting of Families in Rome (June 22-26) and continue to celebrate the Year of “Amoris Laetitia” Family. The toolkit can be found on the website of the National Association of Catholic Family Life Ministers at

Additional resources may be found on the USCCB website at and on a special Vatican website at

For more information contact or 330-744-8451 ext. 272.

Office of Worship

1. Lenten Season Regulations


All Catholics are encouraged to participate in the traditional Lenten practice of prayer, sacrifice, and almsgiving.  Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of fast and abstinence – one full meal and two smaller meals for persons 18 thru 59 years of age; no meat for persons 14 years and older.  All Fridays during Lent are days of abstinence – no meat for persons 14 years and older.  There is no obligation to fast during the weekdays of Lent; however voluntary acts of self-denial are encouraged.


2. Chrism Mass – April 12, 2022


The Chrism Mass will be celebrated on Tuesday, April 12, 2022 at 10:30 a.m. in Saint Columba Cathedral.  There will be no attendance restrictions this year and information letters and details will be sent in the coming weeks.


3. Easter Vigil – April 16, 2022 — Universal Diocesan Starting Time


The Easter Vigil will be on Saturday, April 16, 2022.  The Roman Missal states that, “the entire celebration of the Easter Vigil must take place during the night, so that it begins after nightfall…”  Furthermore, the Priest Policy Handbook states that the Easter Vigil “is not to take place at the time of the ordinary anticipated Mass for Sunday,” (cf. Faculties and Permissions, Section V, pg. 10).  In the Diocese of Youngstown, sunset on April 16, 2022, will be at 8:03 p.m. and the end of civil twilight will be at 8:32 p.m.  It is current diocesan policy that the starting time for the Easter Vigil throughout the diocese be at 8:00 p.m. or later.  This starting time respects the current liturgical guidelines and diocesan policy.  Furthermore it makes the Easter Vigil distinctive from the ordinary anticipated Mass for Sunday and alleviates any confusion among parishes.  Therefore the Easter Vigil is not to begin before 8:00 p.m.  Please note that because daylight savings time begins each year in early March, the recommended start time of Easter Vigil will never be before 8 p.m. 


4. Confirmation of Baptized Catholics at the Easter Vigil


Priests are reminded that the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults gives them the faculty to confirm catechumens and candidates at the Easter Vigil.  However, if there are persons who are baptized Catholic and completing their initiation at the Easter Vigil, the pastor must request permission of Bishop David J. Bonnar to confirm them.  A letter of request stating the names of only those individuals who were baptized Catholic and who will be confirmed at the Easter Vigil should be sent to the Bishop’s Office as soon as possible.


5. 45th National Association of Pastoral Musicians (NPM) Convention


The 54th National Association of Pastoral Musicians (NPM) Convention will be held in Louisville, Kentucky June 28-July 1, 2022.  This year’s theme is “Tested by Fire – Renewed and Transformed.”   The event will be a “hybrid event,” offering both an in-person and virtual experience for an attendee to register.  For more information:



6. Sacred Music Conference – Atheneaum of Ohio


The Sacred Music Institute at Mount Saint Mary Seminary, Cincinnati will offer a three-day conference entitled “Sung Worship: the Work of Our Baptism”  on July 20-23, 2022.  The conference will focus on the meaning of sung worship, the element of sacrifice in the Mass, and the notion of active participation in the liturgy as the vocation of the baptized.  For more information:



7. Liturgical Directory


The Liturgical Directory contains valuable information about Liturgy Committees; liturgical minister formation guidelines; guidelines for the celebration of sacraments; music in liturgical celebrations; and art and architecture directives.  The directory can be accessed and downloaded from the diocesan website by clicking on “Worship” under the “Ministries” tab.


Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry


1. Eagle of the Cross Nominations have been received. They will be examined soon.  Please contact Fr. Ryan Furlong for more details.  World Youth Day 2023 will be here before we know it.  It is summer of 2023.  We will have many events here in the diocese.  If anyone is interested in sending young adults please contact Fr. Ryan Furlong so we can begin the planning before Easter of 2022.

2. Fr Ryan is putting together a team of advisors from each county to plan and collaborate on events for each county. If you are interested in being on this committee and meeting regularly (at least once a month) please contact him. 


3. Several “Eucharistic Processions for Life,| will be held throughout the diocese.  The day will include food, prayer, adoration and confession and a Eucharistic Procession.  The events will be held

at various parishes. This event will focus specifically on grades 8-12 and young adults, however ALL ARE WELCOME!


4. The Comprehensive Youth Ministry presentation has been uploaded and sent to youth and young adult ministers, please check out this great presentation.


5. The Frassati fellowship young adult night of prayer will be held on the first and third Monday’s of the month, at St. Dominic Parish in Youngstown, Ohio. All parishes, please advise all your young adults of this monthly night of prayer and fellowship. 

Diocesan Cemeteries

Flyer: Divine Mercy Chaplet at Cemeteries
(or see text below)

Catholic Funeral and Cemetery Services of the Diocese of Youngstown will be offering The Chaplet of Divine Mercy Prayer Service in the chapels of our 4 Cemeteries at 3:00 every Friday at alternating locations.

First Friday of the month at Calvary Cemetery Chapel in Youngstown.

Second Friday of the month at Resurrection Cemetery Chapel in Austintown.

Third Friday of the month at All Souls Cemetery Chapel in Cortland.

Fourth Friday of the month at Calvary Cemetery Chapel in Massillon.




On May 7th from 9am – 1pm, we are honoring mothers living and deceased at our cemeteries with flowers and a prayer card, and light refreshments and our staff will be available to answer any questions and give out maps of the cemeteries.  They will be available to write up any work orders for work that need done at our families’ graves.  All are Welcome at Resurrection Cemetery in Austintown, Calvary Cemetery in Youngstown, All Souls Cemetery in Cortland and Calvary Cemetery in Massillon.

In Memoriam | Necrology for April

Rev. John B. Holcomb 1/66
Rev. Edward A. Stanton 1/84
Rt. Rev. Msgr. Francis Lavery 2/55
Rev. Francis J. Haidet 4/85
Rev. Msgr. Robert Fannon 5/00
Rev. Clement H. Crock 6/58
Deacon Joseph Nohra 6/15
Rev. Jeffrey Stealey 6/17
Rt. Rev. Msgr. Ferdinand A. Hartmann 7/67
Rev. Joseph J. Krisko 7/67
Rt. Rev. Msgr. John Cunningham 7/76
Rt. Rev. Msgr. James P. McLaughlin 7/79
Rev. Paul McNally 9/73
Rev. John B. Fitzgerald, OP 10/81
Rev. William J. Olson, OP 13/56
Rev. Herman A. Klocker 13/91
Rev. Theodosius Brachman, CPPS 15/64
Rev. Francis X. Borrano, SSP 16/93
Rev. Alfred Meyer, CPPS 17/61
Rev. Alexander M. Blasco 17/80
Rev. Robert Hill 17/08
Rt. Rev. Msgr. George Habig 18/61
Rev. Msgr. Francis J. Hughes 18/99
Rev. Michael Chonko 18/09
Rev. Ralph Friedrich 18/11
Rev. Frank Lehnerd 18/20
Rev. Leo C. Gainor, OP 19/67
Rev. John Vasco 20/68
Rt. Rev. Msgr. Owen Gallagher 20/88
Rev. Adrian McShane, MSC 20/90
Rev. Msgr. George Winca 20/01
Rev. Nicholas Shori 20/16
Rev. Gerald Hellem 22/91
Rev. John I. Higgins 24/83
Deacon Joseph Fries 24/14
Rev. John Gubser 26/05
Rev. Theodore O. Martin 27/67
Rev. Stanley Cmich, CPPS 27/85
Rev. William Loveless 28/20
Rev. Nathan Willis 29/08
Rev. Francis Stulc 30/77


Share To Social Media

Happening Now

Get announcements from the Diocese of Youngstown Offices. Subscribe to the Monthly Communique here.

Find A Parish

Support Catholic Charities