Happy Labor Day!

Dear Friends,

Happy Labor Day Weekend! Whether or not Mother Nature goes along, our Fall level of activities gets into full swing this week. Holy Cross Regional Catholic opens its doors this Wednesday and the Faculty reports in on Tuesday. May the Lord bless both students and teachers with a faith-filled and successful academic year. The celebration for Catechetical Sunday will be at the 9 am Mass on September 15 with prayers and a special blessing for all catechists, teachers, Children’s Liturgy of the Word volunteers, RCIA volunteers, Pre-Jordan leaders, Pre-Cana couples, ChristLife and Walking With Purpose Team members, volunteers and formators in our Faith.

Next Sunday, we open our annual celebration of the Forty Hours devotions beginning with the 12 Noon Mass. Adoration will take place in our main Church from the conclusion of the Mass until Tuesday night, as well as our daily Masses. Adoration will return to Chapel after the conclusion of our outdoor Eucharistic Procession and Benediction on Tuesday night.

Father Christopher Cooke is our homilist this year. We welcome him back home to Saint Eleanor. Sunday evening will be Mass with Homily. Monday evening will be Evening Prayer, Homily and Benediction. Tuesday evening will be Evening Prayer, Homily, outdoor procession with Benediction. Each evening is a 7 pm start time. We look forward to the participation of our various ministries and program participants in the Tuesday procession along with the Verdi Band of Norristown. This is a special opportunity for prayer, adoration and worship in the life of our parish. We hope you make plans to be a special part of it.

A little over a week ago, the press reported on the arrest of Monsignor Joseph McLoone who faces criminal charges of theft. It was also reported that he had opened a bank account that was not reflected on the parish books. This is a violation of Archdiocesan financial control practices and procedures. The investigation of this account showed that certain expenditures appeared consistent with normal parish expenses and others did not. Monsignor was placed on administrative leave and resigned as pastor. The matter was taken up by the Chester County District Attorney and the Archdiocese and the Parish cooperated fully.

The charges are serious and distressing to all of us. This situation of violating proper procedures and protocols along with misusing parish finances is perplexing, sad and disconcerting. Here at Saint Eleanor Parish as well as at Holy Cross Regional Catholic, every account is recorded and maintained on the parish/school financial books. We have a diligent finance director and part-time business manager along with active and engaged Finance Council/Committee members who provide an additional level of oversight. When the Archdiocese began to use outside auditing firms to review the financial records, we were among the very first to engage their recommended vendor, taking part in the piloting of this new system of review and accountability. We have had two audit reports which have been exemplary. These audit reviews occur yearly. We will continue to do everything we can to be good stewards of the financial gifts entrusted to the parish and school.

May we pray for and support one another, helping each other to become more consciously disciples of the Lord sharing His gifts generously.

God bless you, God love you,

Monsignor McCulken

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