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Rochester, NY

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State or province: New York

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James Scheer
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St. John Bosco School Presentation

September 16, 2019


On Tuesday, February 2 of Catholic Schools Week Fr. Mike Mayer and Karen Kuntz spoke to the student body at St. John Bosco School in East Rochester, New York. Fr. Mike and Karen discussed what evangelization is and shared some of the ways in which the Rochester Chapter of St. Paul Street Evangelization proclaims the Gospel of Jesus Christ in the public square. They concluded by passing out “Basic Evangelization Kits” (over 130) to each student and faculty member and explained how to use the kits. Each kit contained an evangelization prayer, a rosary, a rosary brochure, a write-up on evangelization and how to use the kit, and a plastic bag in which the students could place the rosary, rosary brochure and a prayer card of their own making. Last year two students used their experiences of street evangelization in their Cor Unum project (see June 16, 2015 post). What a wonderful group of young evangelists.

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Saturday, September 26 at the Rochester Public Market

September 16, 2019


Today and last Saturday we started later at the market so as to meet a different group of people. We gave out many rosaries and had several wonderful encounters with people: Isaiah, a recovering addict who spent time in jail and who is reading Ezekiel with his wife and wanted to join us; Jeannette who wanted help dealing with her anger issues and was interested in baptism; and a young woman with bright yellow hair who knows the Luminous Mysteries of the Rosary. We said we’d bring her a gold star for her forehead next week to which she replied: “My last name is Starr!”

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Haven’t even set up and people are at our table!

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Gwenn and David at the Market.



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Geneva Farmers Market: Thursday, September 24

September 16, 2019


Last week at the Geneva Farmers Market evangelizers had the opportunity to pray with a young woman who was returning home to Ohio. She had come to Geneva to be with her birth mother, but the relationship did not turn out well. She was heading back to live with her former boyfriend’s mother, a situation she said was stable. Armed with a rosary we said farewell to her as she boarded the bus in front of the Farmers Market.

Today evangelists had the opportunity to minister to a young man who was homeless. Originally from Buffalo he found himself in Geneva and admitted to a drinking problem. He was given some food both at the market and at Our Lady of Peace and attended the 12:10 Mass.

Please pray for these two people that they may find their way home to the Lord and know the power of God’s love.

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Joe and Karen at the Geneva Farmers Market.



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Students Choose Evangelization as Their Research and Service Project

September 16, 2019


Students Choose Evangelization as Their Research and Service Project

Cor Unum, which means “one heart,” is the research and service project performed by Middle School students at St John Bosco Schools in Rochester, New York. The school is accredited by NAPSCIS (National Association of Independent Catholic* Schools). The project aims at helping students understand the tremendous dignity of each and every person as made in the image and likeness of God, and that as Catholics, we have a profound responsibility to defend and uphold this dignity in all circumstances. Most of the topics chosen were related to poverty, hunger, homelessness, elderly, and protection of the unborn.

Two creative young sixth graders decided to research the problem of the lack of Gospel values in society, the division in the Body of Christ, and the hunger for Truth. They spent the school year learning about St. Paul Street Evangelization. St. Paul Street Evangelization is a grassroots, non-profit Catholic evangelization organization, dedicated to responding to the mandate of Jesus to preach the Gospel to all nations by taking our Catholic Faith to the streets. We do this in a non-confrontational way, allowing the Holy Spirit to move in the hearts of those who witness our public Catholic presence.

Jerry Marchand and Mike Monczynski joined the Rochester Chapter of SPSE at the Rochester Public Market on Saturday mornings offering free rosaries and literature to passersby. They also spent several hours creating over 500 Evangelization Kits that were offered to attendees of the Catholic Women’s and Men’s conferences in the Diocese of Rochester.

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Mike

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Jerry

A written paper detailing their research and work was required as well as an oral presentation. Jerry and Mike are grateful for the opportunity to share this ministry with their school community. Beyond that, they understand their responsibility to share the Person of Jesus Christ and His Holy Catholic Church.

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For more information, contact Cathy Marchand at jcm14580@rochester.rr.com.



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Basic Evangelization Kit Packaging Party

September 16, 2019


Thanks to those who helped put together the basic evangelization kits last Friday!

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Door-to-Door Evangelization Recap

September 16, 2019


On Saturday, September 20, Cathy Marchand, Jim Scheer, Carm Caruso, Jerry Marchand and Fr. Mike Mayer went door-to-door to evangelize on behalf of Holy Spirit Church in Webster, NY. As usual, we had some wonderful encounters with faith-filled people and had an opportunity to share our own faith. We also promoteded an upcoming soccer tournament which Fr. Sergio Chavez, parochial vicar of Holy Spirit, was having on Saturday, September 28.

Unlike our work at the Public Market where most people are very interested in having us pray for them, many of the people we encountered could think of nothing to pray about, but said that everything was going well. Given that the area where we evangelized was wealthy–an area of mcmansions–we wondered if there might be a correlation between wealth and an understanding of the need for God’s help?



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Thanks to Our Rosary-Making Partners

September 16, 2019


Follow this link to see an article on rosary-making:

http://www.fltimes.com/lifestyle/article_22370230-3f59-11e4-a395-cf0e3d5a6314.html



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Frontier Field Stadium, August 29

September 16, 2019


Karen Kuntz, Bill McHale, and Mike Kristan evangelized at Frontier Field. Here’s a story from Bill:

I equally enjoyed our get together, we are blessed for sure….I remember names when I put them in my cell contacts…that helps me, in particular I liked talking with the Bible thumper guy who was more quiet than the other one, I explained to him that we as Catholics don’t worship Mary, showed him the mysteries of the rosary and how it is really a prayerful meditation on Scriptural truths we all believe…hey, we plant seeds, God will do the rest.



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Friday, August 15 and Saturday, August 16

September 16, 2019


Friday, August 15: at Ontario Beach Park

Karen spoke with one couple with a toddler in tow. They had  moved into the Charlotte area from the inner city several months ago. They are Catholics but said they had not been back to Mass all of those months since moving. I pointed out Holy Cross right down the street. They were surprised – they didn’t know there was a Catholic Church right in the area. Then they said “Do you think we can go there since we’re not members?” I told them that they are Catholics & as Catholics we are all members of the universal Body of Christ & so we can attend any Catholic Church. Again they were surprised – they said they didn’t know this(!!!) – but they were genuinely pleased to hear this & said they would go to Mass at Holy Cross “very soon.”
Karen also spoke with three twenty-something young people. They said they attended various non-denominational churches but they love Jesus & love to pray & so they all took rosaries & rosary guides. I told them that the rosary takes them through the whole life of Christ & showed them how to use the guide. One young woman was a former Catholic. I asked her if she had ever thought about returning to the Catholic Church. She said yes, but she didn’t know where to look. I asked her where she lived & based on her response, I suggested that she check out Church of the Annunciation on Norton St. She said she might do that sometime. Let’s pray that she does!
Saturday, August 16: at the Rochester Public Market
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Carm hands out rosaries.
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Carm explains the rosary to a Mom and her son.

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Jeanne returns from her walk around the market offering rosaries to shoppers.



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August 9 at the Rochester Public Market

September 16, 2019


This morning at the Rochester Public Market, I had a woman come up to me. She said she was a volunteer collecting signatures in support of the “Women’s Equality Act.” Although I knew exactly what this is, I asked her what she means by “women’s equality.” She started to read off to me the “planks” of this bill – pay equity, stop sexual harassment in the workplace, stop human trafficking, protect victims of domestic violence, etc. I agreed with her that those are all good causes to support. But then she got to the last one – “freedom of choice.” I told her that’s where I have to draw the line. I explained that as a Catholic, I am concerned about human rights for all persons, including the unborn. I stressed how abortion is the ultimate human rights violation, because it snuffs out the life of a human being before they even have a chance to be born. She said she had never looked at it that way before. Let’s pray that she DOES begin to look at it that way! Although I didn’t sign her petition, she did take a rosary & a guide. Holy Spirit, please speak to this woman’s heart!!! Mother Mary, please intercede on behalf of this woman!!!



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Week of July 20

September 16, 2019


Teams evangelized the Farmers Market in Geneva on Thursday, Ontario Beach Park on Friday (see photo below) and the Rochester Public Market on Saturday. One gentleman, whom I’ve seen several times over the summer,stopped to evangelize us. When I asked his wife if she would like a rosary, she said, “No, we’re Christian.” Her husband, however, took a pamphlet on how to pray the rosary.

Members of Fr. Tony Mugavero’s parish team evangelize their church neighborhood every Thursday night, handing out rosaries, crosses, and pamphlets.

Please keep in your prayers Carm Caruso’s two prematurely-born grandchildren. Thank you.

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Karen speaks with several teens at the beach.

Team member Dominick Zarcone adds the following:

“To greet shoppers with a smile and offer them a Rosary, a guide to praying and a Rosary CD fills me with joy and gratitude. I cannot help but believe the Lord Jesus is pleased with these efforts to bring His Good News to our City. Engaging others for Him is meaningful knowing the Holy Spirit is working in the lives of the evangelizer and the evangelized.
Yesterday at the Public Market, one woman actually took the time to ask me what the Rosary has to do with Christian prayer. She Listened; Took all three items and Offered me God’s blessings with a genuine heartwarming smile. Small children love to choose their favorite colors and pick out the Rosary of their choice. Parents are watching, listening and hopefully beginning themselves to be open to the Good News.
Also, I encountered a number of people connected to the RGRTA Bus Company for whom I have been an employee 37 years. There were bus passengers, a RTS driver, a Lift Line driver, an Authority Executive Officer, and a transit union attorney. What a joy to greet and offer Rosaries to both customers and colleagues. A hearty thanks to our SPSE Chapter Founder, Father Mike Mayer, for knowing and valuing the Church’s most important service of love. Going into the “street” to announce Catholic Faith in the Savior Christ is wonderful. Come and See!”
Karen Kuntz adds the following:
“This morning I spoke w/ a woman who grew up Catholic but left the Church & is now attending a Methodist church (sorry, I didn’t get where – the conversation didn’t come to that). Anyway, I asked her if she had ever considered coming back to the Catholic Church. I asked her if she ever missed the Sacraments, particularly the Eucharist. She said she never really thought about it. Let’s pray that she DOES think about it! I reminded her that Christ is truly present in the Eucharist & that He wants her to come back & share in the graces available in the Sacraments. That’s about as far as I got, b/c she took off after that. But she did take a rosary & a guide & a St. Francis/St. Stephen info card, so let’s share this w/ the group so we can pray for her.”



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Ontario Beach Park, July 18

September 16, 2019


This was our first gathering at Ontario Beach. We met at 1:00 p.m. and evangelized for nearly 2 hours. Because there weren’t as many people as we hoped, we asked one of the workers at Abbott’s Custard what time things begin to get busy and he said around 5:00 p.m. So, next Friday we’ll gather around 5:00 p.m. as people get out of work and gather at the beach. People were more ready to stop and chat here than at the Public Market where buying the week’s groceries was the primary objective. One woman took quite a few brochures from the table and spoke about how and her family didn’t ready attend Mass, but when she us on the corner she readily came up to share her story. She wondered if our presence there was a sign from God! Bob Dorscheid joined us for the first time.

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Carm and Karen prepare to evangelize.

The woman in the following picture had a typical question about prayer to the saints. We were able to give her an answer–along with a rosary–and she picked up the brochure on praying to the saints.

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This woman asked about praying to the saints.



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Rochester Public Market, July 12, 2014

September 16, 2019


We have been blessed with one beautiful Saturday after another. Yesterday was no exception. Because people who come to the market are goal-driven (get into the market and buy those vegetables, etc.) we don’t have people stopping by to look at our materials or enter into lengthy encounters. This week we plan to set up shop at Ontario Beach in Charlotte where there is more likelihood of people stopping by to chat. We’ll be setting up shop right next to one of the main gathering places at Charlotte: Abbott’s Custard!! People can eat and chat and peruse at the same time.

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Geneva Farmers Market, July 11

September 16, 2019


Two of our evangelists spoke with a young, Asian woman who was waiting for the bus to take her to Rochester so she could fly to China for a visit. She was given a rosary and asked to take our love to the people in China!



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Rochester Public Market, June 28

September 16, 2019


Karen gave a rosary to a young 20-30 something young woman. She called me  (Cathy) over because the young lady was looking for a church near the market. I started a conversation and told her about Corpus Christi Church, one of the churches in St. Frances Cabrini Parish. After further conversation, this young lady said she had moved here from the Binghamton area for a job downtown and felt she needed to return to Mass. What was so great is that she knew she needed confession first! She asked where a church held daily confession. I knew that OLV had confession 5 days a week. Karen provided me with pen and paper, so I wrote down several churches, including Blessed Sacrament, since she lived near Park Avenue. She expressed a desire for more traditional liturgy and music, so I mentioned OLV too. I also put in a plug for the Frassati Society, St. Irenaeus Ministries, and Blessed Sacrament so that she could connect with other young adults. She was so appreciative. Another young mother ( seemed to be a single Mom) pushing a stroller with her 2-3 year old took a rosary and we began to chat. Her daughter was a great conversationalist and I love children! To make a long story short, Mom was born into a Catholic family, but was just “doing her own thing at home.” I shared with her that Jesus really wants to be close to her, especially in the Sacrament of the Eucharist and suggested she check out a parish near her. She was very grateful for the exchange.

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June 19 at the Farmers Market in Geneva

September 16, 2019


The Geneva SPSE team launched today at the Farmers Market on Exchange Street, just down the road from St. Francis de Sales Church. Thanks to all who turned out.

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An Interesting Encounter

September 16, 2019


From Karen Bernhardt Kuntz

This morning (June 14) at the Public Market I had an interesting conversation with a woman for whom I would like to ask you to pray.
When I offered her a Rosary, she said “No thank you.” Then she asked “When you pray the Rosary, who are you praying to?” And I said “We are praying to God.” She said “Catholics pray to Mary and the Saints, and that constitutes worship, which is idolatry.” I said “If we did worship Mary and the Saints, that would INDEED be idolatry. But Catholics do NOT worship Mary and the Saints. In fact, we do not even pray TO Mary and the Saints. Rather, we ask them to pray for us – to intercede for us.” She said “Where is that in the Bible?” I told her that in Revelation we read about the Saints around the throne of God and how their prayers rise up to God, mingled with incense. She said “The Bible says there is only one intercessor between God and man, and that is Jesus.” I said,”Actually the Bible says there is only one MEDIATOR between God and man, and that is Jesus. But we can have many intercessors.” I said, “For instance, if I asked you to pray for me now, you would be an intercessor for me.” She said, “Well, that’s different. I’m living and I’m standing right here beside you.” I said “It’s true that you are living, and your prayer for me can be very effective. As Catholics, we believe that the Saints in Heaven are also very much alive. Imagine how effective their prayers are, because they are in the very presence of God!” At that point she turned away and shot back at me “I hope you find the truth some day.” I said “Thank you for your concern. I have found the Truth. God bless you – have a nice day!”
As I said, please pray for this woman. Obviously she is coming from a place of many misunderstandings about the Catholic faith. Thank you!


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More Chapter News

September 16, 2019


SPSE Team Photo

From Tom Race

Our Mother of Sorrows Church Festival (June5-7)

For the first time this year the Our Mother of Sorrows Stewardship team organized & staffed an Information and Welcome tent at the annual parish festival. The tent featured welcome brochures, vacation bible school/ pre-school information and Saint Paul Street Evangelization pamphlets, medals and rosaries. Over the 3 days of the festival we engaged  over 200 people and gave away over 60 rosaries and over 30 miraculous medals. Besides having Bishop Matano stop by for a visit at the festival and at our tent, the best part of our time spent at the festival was when two young families mentioned that they were so impressed with our parish that they were going to contact the rectory to become members of our parish family! Amen!

More on the Rochester Public Market, June 14

It was a cold morning at the Public Market but there were plenty of warm & friendly people. Fr. Mike and I were evangelizing together when a gentleman approached and said that he was watching us from a distance and was very curious what we were up to. When we explained that we were Catholics proclaiming the Good News he was very surprised and mentioned that he had never seen or heard of Catholics evangelizing in public. He went on to say that he was a Protestant who had done some street evangelization himself and said that he thought it was a great thing that we were out proclaiming the Good News in public and wished us well in our efforts.



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June 15 at the Rochester Public Market

September 16, 2019


This was the first Saturday that was chilly and cloudy. Nonetheless we had 14 people spreading Gospel joy including first-timers from St. Pius Tenth Church (the six Browns). What was lacking in the weather was more than made up for by the warmth of our encounters. Fr. Mickey Mcgrath stopped by and, for the second time in two weeks, we prayer with an expectant mother.

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Rochester Public Market, June 7, 2014

September 16, 2019


SPSE Team Photo

Another beautiful Saturday at the Rochester Public Market–the fifth in a row. Pictured above our two evangelists from St. John Bosco School in East Rochester who engage each week in a holy rosary giveaway competition. In the works: a life-sized cutout of our holy father, Pope Francis, musical minstrels, and a larger table for our materials. Thanks to all who came out. Let the fruits of the Holy Spirit flow!!



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Rochester Public Market, Saturday, May 17

September 16, 2019


SPSE Team Photo

Another beautiful day at the market thanks to Carm Caruso, Ted Janiszewki (pictured above), Karen Bernhadt Kuntz, Ann Marie Buonemani, Jim Scheer, John Hayes, Fr. Mike Mayer, Fr. Micky McGrath. Notice the new sign which just came in. I attached another, smaller sign in the cart so we could wander around the market itself.



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