98 South 2nd Ave.
Manville, NJ 08835
Phone: (908) 725-0072

"It is Christmas every time you let God love others through you ... yes, it is Christmas every time you smile at your brother and offer him your hand." -- Mother Teresa

Dear Parishioners,

Thank you for the patience and love you have demonstrated for one another during this time of change and uncertainty. While it is hard these days to depend on scheduled family and holiday events,, we know that we can always depend on God and one another.

Thank God, despite the pandemic, we can still worship in church and celebrate the sacraments, which are livestreamed on the internet. I thank you for your diligent cooperation and adherence to the Covid-19 restrictions, and I trust that regardless of the difficulty of the pandemic, your family, professional and spiritual life continues to develop an attitude of patience, understanding and forgiveness.

I continuously pray for you and your loved ones and hope you are doing well. As we continue through the season of Advent, it is with great concern and at the same time with great faith, I encourage you to use all the available on-line tools to prepare yourself spiritually for Christmas (e.g., Catholic websites offering retreat, podcasts, video reflections, prayers). Confessions will be heard at Sacred Heart Church according to the published schedule.

This year nothing is the same, but we persevere with grit and determination to prepare for and celebrate Christmas. Our Christmas schedule has been changed to reflect the limitations caused by the pandemic. To accommodate the increase in participation, additional Masses were added to the schedule. Please note the revised schedule included with your Christmas card and letter. However, it is still subject to any changes that may be issued by new diocesan and/or government recommendations.

May God bless you abundantly in this joyful Advent and Christmas time, and may you and your family members be safe and well.

Fr. Stan


By Dr. Mary Lou Cebula in consultation with Deacon Tom Giacobbe

Did you know that Deacon Tom writes the weekly vignettes associated with the Bible readings for each Sunday’s Mass? Many of our parishioners appear on camera reading in the vignettes; now in the tenth year of production. Caz. Bielen records them; and places them on the CTR Parish website. They can be especially comforting for anyone unable to attend Mass in person.

Deacon Tom began thinking about writing something for this Christmas last July. He wondered how a Christmas vignette could be different considering how the Covid-19 pandemic changed our lives. Instead of writing something like he did last year, like the origins of the hymn “Silent Night,” he consulted Bonnie, his wife. After they brainstormed, she said, “Why don’t you do something with children. That always lightens the situation, and it would be a good way to end 2020, especially since we aren’t having a children’s pageant this year.” As a result, a Christmas video evolved!

As Deacon Tom began to plan, he noticed that Christmas is on a Friday this year. In addition, two days later, on Sunday, it is the Feast of the Holy Family. The Epiphany, the coming of the Wise Men occurs on the next Sunday. With all these feasts so close together, Deacon Tom decided to focus the video on the total mystery of Jesus’ Incarnation.

This Mystery began with the angel Gabriel coming to Mary on March 25th. From there, Deacon Tom combined elements of Luke and Matthew’s Christmas stories. Jesus first revealed himself to the Jews with the shepherds, who paid him homage in the Manger. It ended with the Epiphany, when Jesus revealed himself to the rest of the world, the gentiles, with the Magi coming and also paying him homage in the Manger.

Diane Bielen and Deacon Tom reached out to members of our parish community to find children willing to participate in this special Christmas video. Caz. Bielen, our resident cinematographer/editor created the video, and Alicia (daughter of Diane and Caz) took part in the production as the narrator. Alicia said,“It was such a joy to be part the Christmas drama. Parents and Mrs. Charlotte Snow, the parish’s Director of Religious Education, assisted with costumes, making the video a community effort.

Matthew Cebula, age eight, who played a shepherd, had this response to the experience: “I think I might do it again! I had to say some things, and I remembered with my big brain.” Jason Cebula, age 10, said he felt a bit weird because he is not used to performing. “I had a small part as a shepherd and had to think of something to say. I said, ‘We followed the star to come here.’ We practiced multiple times so I was prepared when I had to speak.”

Following , is an article filled with pictures showing how the Christmas video was created and a link to the video drama itself. PLEASE CLICK HERE >>


Despite the Covid19 pandemic necessitating a reconfiguration of religious instruction, our CCD program is functioning for grades one through eight. After Father Stan and CCD Director, Mrs. Charlotte Snow, met with all the teaching staff last summer, a plan was developed following the Metuchen Diocese guidelines.

It was decided the safest method for instruction would be virtual rather than in-class lessons. The teaching staff received a zoom introduction and training for implementing Google Classroom, the same format used in the public schools. Parents and students were informed of this decision and instructed on how to use the CTR website to login to the weekly lessons and assignments.

Although it has been a “trial and error” process, the staff, students, and parents have been adjusting to this new and different method of learning about our faith. Most students have been checking their teachers’ Google Classroom and completing assignments. Parents have an added role to play since the teachers cannot give the kind of one-on-one assistance they would normally do in class. At times, they are asked to supervise the completion of lessons, tests, and projects.

This is truly a team effort and one worth it so our Catholic youth can learn all the components of our religion and participate in Sacraments, celebrations, Mass, Bible study, saying the rosary, and so much more.

It is our hope that, in the near future, CCD instruction can resume to our original format.


Interview with Mrs. Lisa Cimpko, Chair of Caritas, by Dr. Mary Lou Cebula

How many families/people has Caritas helped and are currently helping?
We are currently serving 20 families on a monthly basis, but the number varies. The organization has helped as many as 110 families over the last four years. Many of our guests are transient and come on and off our roster. There is a great need in our community for food prior and during the pandemic. Many of our guests do not have transportation so there is not an option to go to other food pantries.

How are you running Caritas during the Covid-19 pandemic?
Our devoted team of 10 volunteers purchase and pack food for monthly delivery. Once a month we have a dedicated volunteer “angel” who delivers the food to our guest. Caritas is truly a whole team effort!

Before the pandemic, we provided food to our guests at the John Neuman Center twice a month. Supplies include nonperishable food products and items donated from a local bakery. Many of our guests do not have a stove so we need to provide items that they can cook on a hot plate or microwave oven.

Through generous donations we also have and continue to provide food, Christmas gifts, hams for the holidays, coats, gift certificates to the Manville dinner for meals and gift cards. When the pantry is open the most important service, we provide is companionship and someone to talk to which helps ease our clients’ loneliness and isolation.

Tell me about the sponsors and support groups who contribute to Caritas
It takes a village, and we would not be successful without the fantastic support of: Christ the Redeemer parishioners, Canal Walk Italian/American Club, Canal Walk Women’s, Club, relatives of our Caritas Team, the Knights of Columbus Saint Jude Council #6573, and St. Joseph’s Church in Millstone.

We are extremely grateful for all these organizations that display the love and support of people who have less than others.

How can the members of CTR Parish help more to support Caritas?
Donations and support are the best way CTR can help us. We are in need of non-perishable food items that include peanut butter and jelly, cereal, pasta and sauce macaroni and cheese, canned soup, vegetables, canned fruit and coffee. Gift cards, monetary donations, toiletries (which are not covered by government assistance programs such as food stamps) are appreciated. Toiletries include: shampoo, soap, bodywash, razors, laundry detergent, toilet paper and paper towels. We are hoping to have monthly drives at the parish in 2021 requesting specific items in need for the month.

For the January 2021 donations we are requesting shampoo, soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorant. We have more male clients than female. Beginning the first week of January please bring your items to the church and deposit the items in the Caritas bins at the back of the church, and we will collect the items. You can also drop off supplies at the parish office. These donations would be an enormous help and possibly a good New Year’s Resolution. February we are anticipating collecting toilet paper and paper towels.

Please know that all financial and gift card donations for Caritas are utilized by the Caritas team to provide support to the underprivileged in Manville. Monetary and gift card donations can be placed in the collection basket in an envelope marked Caritas or sent directly to the parish with Attn: Caritas on the envelope. On line donation available through our parish web (select CARITAS from the dropdown) ONLINE DONATION >>  

Caritas would like to grow and expand. If you know anyone who needs assistance in the Manville area please contact Lisa 908-306-0949 or All information is confidential. Everyone who benefits from the donations is so appreciative and thankful for what they receive. Our donators and the parish have really made a difference in our clients’ lives. Caritas would not be a success without the assistance of our volunteers on the Caritas Team. We have a superb group of individuals who supply their time, talents, and work with passion to support the local community. All lour volunteers are extremely devoted and go the extra mile. They quietly do their jobs despite the pandemic and other factors. They live by the words of Jesus,“Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for the least brothers of mine, you did for me.”


By Father Slaby and Dr. Mary Lou Cebula

Christ the Redeemer celebrated the beatification of Father Michael McGivney during Mass services recently. He was beatified during a special Mass October 31, 2020 at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford, Connecticut. The miracle recognized by the Vatican occurred in 2015 and involved a U.S. baby, still in utero, with a life-threatening condition that, under most circumstances, could have led to an abortion. Instead, his parents, Dan and Michelle Schachle, of Dickson, Tennessee, prayed to McGivney to intercede with God to save their son, still in his mother's womb. At that time, there was little hope of the baby surviving a life-threatening case of fetal hydrops. That baby, Mikey Schachle, is now five years old.

McGivney, the son of Irish immigrants, was born in Waterbury, Connecticut, and was ordained a priest in 1877 for what is now the Archdiocese of Hartford. He founded the Knights of Columbus at St. Mary's Parish in New Haven, Connecticut, in 1882.

He originally started the Knights of Columbus as a service organization to help widows and orphans. The fraternal order for Catholic men has grown into the largest lay Catholic organization in the world with two million members and sponsors. They participate in a wide range of educational, charitable, and religious activities.

McGivney, who will be the first American parish priest to be beatified and has long been a hero of working-class Catholics, can be viewed as a martyr of a pandemic. When he died of pneumonia complications at age 38 in 1890, it was during an outbreak of influenza known as the Russian flu. He is buried in New Haven.

The date selected for McGivney’s feast, August 13, is the day between his birth, which was August 12, 1852, and his death, which was August 14, 1890.

Our parish has an active Knights of Columbus. New members are always welcomed. Please consider offering your time and talents to help our organization grow and continue to support our community.

By Dr. Mary Lou Cebula
Saint Frances Cabrini, also known as Mother Cabrini, was born in Lombardy, a region of Italy, and was the youngest of 13 children. Only four survived into adulthood. As a child, she was already determined to enter a life of religious devotion. When her parents died in 1870, Saint Frances Cabrini applied for admission to the Daughters of the Sacred Heart. At the age of 27, she received her religious vows.

In 1880, St. Frances Cabrini and seven other sisters founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus with a goal to evangelize in China. Her plans were changed, however, when Pope Leo XIII recommended she travel west to America instead. Taking his advice, she arrived in New York in 1889 and soon founded an orphanage for children of Italian immigrants.

Over the years, she set up schools, hospitals, and a prison ministry. In all, she stablished 67 institutes in the US, Central and South America. In 1905, the St. Cabrini Hospital in Chicago, Illinois was opened. Currently, it is the location of a National Shrine in her honor.

St. Frances Cabrini became a naturalized citizen in 1909 and was the first US citizen to be canonized. The sisters of the Sacred Heart continue her work today caring for immigrants, the sick, poor, and uneducated.

St. Frances Cabrini died in 1917 and is the patroness of immigrants.

Our Christmas schedule has been changed to reflect the limitations caused by the pandemic. To accommodate the increase in participation, additional Masses were added to the schedule. Please note the revised schedule sent to you with your Christmas card and letter also available at our parish website ( However, it is still subject to change to reflect the Bishop’s and the government recommendations.

  Due to the pandemic we will not be doing the usual Home Blessing this year. If you would like your home blessed, please call the parish office to schedule it for the date your street would have been normally blessed. Moreover, every day during Home Blessing/Kolęda at 6:00 PM at Sacred Heart church additional Mass will be said and Live streamed for the people scheduled to be visited on that day.HOME BLESSING SCHEDULE >>
From Father Timothy A. Christy, VG
December 9, 2020
USCCB Statement Regarding COVID-19 Vaccines

As we continue to navigate through the complexities of the effects of COVID-19 virus and the precautions and restrictions that it brings, be sure of Bishop Checchio’s ongoing prayerful concern and gratitude as you seek to keep your communities safe and aware while staying on mission with advancing the Gospel.
May St. Juan Diego be our inspiration as we seek his intercession to renew the graces of our Consecration to Jesus through Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Attached to this memo is a statement from Bishop Kevin Rhodes (Committee on Doctrine) and Bishop Joseph Naumann (Committee on Pro-Life Activities) regarding concerns expressed over the morality of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 Vaccines. Parishes and schools should disseminate this information to their families.

  FromFather Timothy A. Christy, VG
December 9, 2020
Year of Saint Joseph

You may be aware that, on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, Pope Francis promulgated a Year of Saint Joseph to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of Pope Pius IX’s placing the Universal Church under the patronage of Saint Joseph. In his apostolic letter, Patris Corde, Pope Francis identifies the many reasons why it is of great value for the Church now to reflect on the life of St. Joseph – especially during the coming year.
You may read the Holy Father’s apostolic letter
The Pope’s letter concludes with a Prayer to Saint Joseph – one of many that may be used privately and collectively.
Attached are listed some possible dates for you to discern planning in your own calendars CLICK HERE >>
On December 19 at 12:00 pm, 2020, Wreaths Across America will be at Sacred Heart Cemetery, Saints Peter and Paul and Holy Ghost - Hillsborough to Remember and Honor our veterans through the laying of Remembrance wreaths on the graves of our country's fallen heroes and the act of saying the name of each and every veteran aloud. MORE INFO >>


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Created by inter-works for Christ the Redeemer Parish
PO Box 924, Manville, NJ 08835
Phone:(908) 725-0072

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last updated: 11.03.2020