Ministries

Our faith is fueled by our actions for others. At St. Joseph’s we have a wide variety of ministries in which to serve our local church as well as our surounding community. We encourage you to investigate our offerings to find an area that interests you. 

The most important thing we do at St. Joseph is to gather together to celebrate Sunday Eucharist. When we share Eucharist, we become more and more the one we remember, the one we praise and thank, and the one whose Body and Blood we eat and drink.  In short, we become the Body of Jesus, the Christ.  When we celebrate Eucharist, Jesus is present, visible, and active in and through us, continuing his work in the world, loving the world on behalf of the Father.

We help facilitate the celebration of the liturgy by providing  Altar Servers to assist the celebrant, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion for distributing the Eucharist, Ushers for seating the congregation and collecting the offertory, Announcers to introduce the Liturgy, Lectors to proclaim the Scriptures, Greeters to welcome those who come to Mass, and Music to enhance the worship experience.

 

Altar Servers

altar servers at st. josephAltar Servers assist the priest during Mass and may be boys or girls who have made their First Communion.

For more information, please contact, John Andrew Seymour via our Liturgical Inquiry Form.

If you are interested in applying, please complete the online  Altar Server Application 

 

REMINDERS

*Please refer to the handbook for additional details

  • Servers must find their own replacement if unable to serve when scheduled. We will provide emails for all to assist you.
    If you are sick, please send an email to those that you are serving with to let them know that you will be absent.
  • All servers should arrive 15 minutes before mass and remember to sign in, as attendance will be recorded.
  • Appropriate dress is required: Dark pants (no shorts or jeans), solid color shirt, black shoes (closed-toe – no sneakers, sandals, flip flops or platform shoes), long hair should be in a ponytail or bun. Altar servers who are not dressed appropriately may be asked to not serve that day.

Altar Society

This is a special group that often works in concert with the Art and Environment ministry.  Four teams alternate each week to collect and wash altar linens, and straighten and dust the sanctuary and the chapel.  A team will volunteer for three hours each month.  They do not vacuum, wash windows or do heavy cleaning.  Three times a year there is a workday and all members are invited to assist.

For more information on this ministry, please contact Chairperson, Lola Gazda via our Liturgical Inquiry Form

 

Arts and Environment

This group is responsible for the overall appearance of the sanctuary including coordination of the banners with the liturgical seasons and the placement of flowers and other items to make the sanctuary a more appealing and prayerful environment for worship. This is especially done during Holy Days, Easter Tridium,  Advent and Christmas.

If you are interested in helping with this ministry please contact, Mary Lou Griffin via our  Liturgical Inquiry Form

 

Extraordinary Ministers

Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion assist the priest in the distribution of Communion during the Liturgy and in visits to those ill or homebound.

For the most comprehensive information about  this ministry please read
How to Become an Extraordinary Minister

If you are interested in becoming an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion, please contact Dave Wilkinson via our Liturgical Inquiry Form.

Flower Donations

This ministry ensures that we have flowers around the altar and in the sanctuary each week. These flowers are usually donated by parishioners in celebration of happy events or in memory of special loved ones. We also offer opportunities to donate for our annual Easter lilies and Christmas poinsettias.  Volunteers also water, care and replaced when necessary.

If you are interested in joining this ministry or donating flowers for use in the sanctuary, please contact Bev Fricks via our Liturgical Inquiry Form.

Lectors

This ministry is responsible for the reading of the Word of God during liturgies, along with reciting prayers of the faithful and giving announcements or other directions as needed.  Training is held periodically throughout the year.

If you are interested in joining this ministry area, please contact Jeanne Das via our  Liturgical Inquiry Form.

Additional information about the responsibilities of this ministry area can be found
in The Effective Lector.

Music and Choirs

Our  Music Ministry is under the direction of Gerard Mirandilla. He coordinates all musical needs for our Parish activities, most importantly our weekend Masses, weddings and funerals.  He also directs other special Eucharistic celebrations, like our annual John Paul II Mass and Feast of St. Joseph Mass, and organizes a Unified Choir, which is a collaboration of available members of the different choral groups, to provide music during such occasions. Gerard also provides support to the other choral groups when needed and assists with other Parish activities.

For information on any of our choirs, contact us via our Liturgical Inquiry Form or individual coordinators.

Director of Music Ministries
Gerard Mirandilla

Music Ministry group picture

For information on any of our choirs, contact us via our Liturgical Inquiry Form or individual coordinators.

Glory and Praise Choir         Coordinator: Gerard Mirandilla


From the quartet that comprised this group in the early 2000s, this choir has grown considerably to its current ensemble of singers and instrumentalists and different members sing at the 5:30 PM Saturday, 8 AM and 12 Noon Sunday Masses.  They provide a mix of traditional and contemporary music that are selected to enhances the understanding and appreciation of the biblical readings for the week. The melodious choral arrangements are usually augmented by piano, organ, violin, flute, and guitar (classical and bass) accompaniment. Anyone with the slightest interest in music and strong enthusiasm to sing is invited to join this choir family! 

The practice on Mondays at 6 PM in Room 251.

They also gather about once a month in a private residence for their weekly rehearsal that concludes with the celebration of choir members’ recent birthdays.  Such periodic social gatherings only reinforce personal bonds among members of this closely-knit choral group.

Glory and praise choir group photo

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Luz y Esperanza Choir

Coordinator: Jorge Galdamez

This Spanish Choir  combines music and instruments from Central and South American cultures. It is accompanied by guitar, piano, and percussion instruments.

They practice on Saturday at 6 PM in Room 226.
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St. Cecilia Choir
Coordinator:  Mark Wenthe

The choir for the 10:00 AM Mass leads the congregation in singing and encourages all parishioners to participate. It does this through primarily traditional church music of composers from the classics to modern, from Gregorian chant to folk music, blending men’s and women’s voices in harmony or unison. The choir is accompanied by the organ. The choir is open to all. One does not have to have a trained singing voice or be able to read music. A love of singing is the only requirement.

They practice on Wednesdays at 6 PM and also 9:30 am prior to mass.
————————————————————————————————-Laudate Si Choir
Coordinator: Vitelio Tejada

They practice on Sundays  at 12:30 PM in Room 226.
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Praise band choir

Praise Band Choir
Coordinator: Chris Henderson

The Praise Band shares their ministry primarily in Christian contemporary music. The ensemble is comprised of members of high school juniors or seniors, UGA students and other members of the parish family. On any given Sunday, the 6:00 pm Eucharistic celebration may be supplemented with vocals, guitar, piano, and drums.

The Praise Band practices on Sunday at 4:30 PM. We are always open to new members with a heartfelt desire to make a joyful noise unto the Lord!
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children's choir

Youth Choir
Coordinator: Julia Seymour

In addition to our many choirs for adults, we are also blessed to have the Youth Choir at St. Joseph Parish! The choir is students, 3rd – 12th grade.

They practice once a week and sing monthly at the 12 Noon Masses. They also sing at the annual Parish Christmas Party, Annual Tea Party, Hispanic Community Christmas Party, at the Nursing Home during the Holy Week Mission, and at other Parish events.

2019-2020: Sep 8, Oct 13, Nov 10, Dec 8, Jan 12, Feb 9, Mar 8, Apr 26, and May 10.

Interested? Please fill out the interest form at https://tinyurl.com/yy5byld5

 

 

 

Ushers and Greeters

Ushers and Greeters welcome and assist parishioners to find seating during Mass, take up the collections, find someone to bring up the offertory gifts, and distribute bulletins as parishioners leave.

If you are interested in becoming an Usher or Greeter, please contact Al Johnson via our Liturgical Inquiry Form.

The life of a Catholic makes no sense unless it is a life of constant spiritual growth. To cease to grow in our spiritual lives is to become indifferent to God, deaf to Christ’s constant loving call to us. It is our duty — and it should be our joy — to strive to grow toward Christ in the way that a flower grows toward the sun.

These ministries give us the opportunity to not only serve the Lord but to also grow our faith beyond our Confirmation into the Church.

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is both a prayer and a ministry.

monstrance with the consecrated hostAs a prayer, we adore and glorify God, thanking him for the gift of his Son. Adoration is one way we come closer to God.

As a ministry, we take time out of our busy day to be in the presence of our Lord.  Every Friday with the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament those called to this ministry are asked to commit an hour of their time and remain in the presence of our Lord.  During the day when the Blessed Sacrament is exposed a Guardian must be present.

If you feel called to serve our Lord as a Guardian of the Blessed Sacrament, or for more information, please contact, Liz Fontaine via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

Bible Study

Women’s Bible Study:

The women’s program uses a a study from Endow called Letter to Women. It is a good introduction to the Christian concept of woman and her indispensable role in the Church, the family, society, and the world,” which is based on the teachings of John Paul II.

The classes meet September-April on Thursday mornings at 9 am till 11 am in the Youth Room and begin with refreshments and coffee. The cost is $75 which includes all course materials and childcare. Pre-registration is required to participate.

for more information, please contact, Heather Gardner via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

Men’s Bible Study: 

All men are welcome to join this year-round Catholic men’s program focusing on the role of men in their families and the church.
Meetings are held Wednesdays at 7 AM along with coffee and donuts;  no childcare is available.

for more information, please contact, Phil Tybor via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

 

Teen Bible Study: 

High School teens in grades 9-12, have bible study in addition to their Youth Group. Girls Bible Study meets on  Tuesdays, 7 PM and Boys Bible Study begins Thursdays,7 PM, both in the Youth Room.

For more information, please contact HS Youth Directors, Justin and Megan Estes via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

 

Funeral Planning

When a loved one dies those who are left behind are often unable to cope with the tasks necessary to lay their loved one to rest, particularly if the death was unexpected. One of these tasks is the planning of the Funeral Liturgy including the selection of appropriate readings, ensuring a priest and altar servers are available, and coordinating the music for the liturgy.

For more information, please contact Susan Deutch  via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

If your family has experienced a death and you need to plan a  funeral, please contact the Parish office:
706-548-6223.
secretary@stjosephathens.com

Home Groups

The St. Joseph Home Groups or small groups program is alive and vibrant in our parish. These are groups of 10-12 adults meeting in people’s homes or even at a restaurant or pub. Our goal is to break bread together, break into the Word and Faith together and then break out into the world. We discuss the faith using great Catholic and priest-approved studies such as The Bible and Virgin Mary, The Bible, and the Sacraments, the Catholicism series by Bishop Barron and other such similar studies. Each group selects a Facilitator, a Parish contact, and a coordinator to handle schedule and meals.

For more information, please contact, Jenny and Ben Williams via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

Liturgy of the Hours

The Liturgy of the Hours or Divine Office is often referred to as the Breviary and is the official set of prayers “marking the hours of each day and sanctifying the day with prayer”.

Readings and prayers are held in the Chapel.
8:10 AM,  Monday – Saturday.

liturgy of the hours picture

Women's Evening of Reflection

Women’s Evening of Reflection
We have a new program for women this year, An Evening of Reflection.
Beginning with Mass and Adoration, the evening will also include dinner and discussion on a variety of topics. The group meets on the second Monday of the month.

For more information, please contact, Tracy Cullom via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

To send a RSVP to a gathering, submit it to: womensEOR@gmail.com

Consecration to Mary

Consecration through Mary
Using books and video material provided by Father Hugh Gillespie of the Company of Mary, this series follows the 33 day method laid out by St. Louis de Montfort (d. 1713) in his great work True Devotion.
Each day contains 2-3 short prayers, a scripture passage, an excerpt from de Montfort’s writings, and a question on which to meditate throughout the day. After the 33 days, on a Marian feast day, you may consecrate yourself totally to Jesus through Mary.

For more information, see the Information link below or contact, Liz Fontaine via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

Consecration Information

Click here register for our next session, Oct 25-Dec 2:

Consecration Registration

Sick and Homebound

The Sick and Homebound ministry is dedicated to assisting those members of our parish who are unable to participate fully in our parish life due to illness or another incapacity. This may include bringing the Holy Eucharist to these parishioners. Because of the highly vulnerable nature of those being ministered to, the Archdiocese requires volunteers in this ministry undergo special training as well as a background check.

If you are in need of a visit,  please contact the Parish office:
706-548-6332
secretary@stjosephathens.com

If you are interested in assisting in this ministry, please contact:
Mary Lauren Schroeder 
706-254-6675
marylaurenschroeder@gmail.com

Disciples of Jesus and Mary

Disciples of Jesus and Mary
The Disciples of Jesus and Mary (DJM) is a spiritual formation program that offers all to grow spiritually and to work effectively in the world. It draws material from the Gospels, the teachings of the Church, and spiritual authors. The program, founded by Fr. Santan Pinto, S.O.L.T. offers how to discover your plan of life and helps us to recognize the way the Lord has been forming us throughout our entire life.
You can learn more about this program at disciplesofjesusandmary.org

For more information, please contact, Julie and Eric Kuehler via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

The parish community has a special role in promoting participation in the life, mission, and work of the faith community.

The parish is where the Church lives. Parishes are communities of faith, of action, and of hope. Not only are they where the Gospel is proclaimed and celebrated, but where believers join in fellowship. An extension of our own homes, our Parish is the heart of our Catholic community. Parish life enables God’s people to meet Jesus in word, sacrament and in each other.

Check out our Photo Albums to see some of the fun things we do at St. Joseph’s!

Athens Catholic Radio

Athens Catholic Radio is a ministry dedicated to reaching and serving our community through an encouraging, Christian community that learns and prays together.

The station broadcasts EWTN Radio programming in English and Spanish, delivering a schedule tailored to the needs of our unique community. Programs include EWTN live, EWTN Classics, Radio Catolica Mundail as well as several popular EWTN talk shows.

Athens Catholic Radio operates under the authority of an Advisory Board under the direction of St. Joseph Pastoral Parish Council.

You can find it on the dial at 105.7 FM.

Check out their website for programming schedules:
https://www.athenscatholicradio.com/

For more information, please contact George Sigalas via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Columbiettes

The St. Joan of Arc Auxilliary 6514 of the Columbiettes is a growing organization of Catholic women focusing on using their talents and creativity to foster our charitable contributions as well as our spiritual growth.

We are affiliated with and work hand-in-hand with our brother Knights of Columbus.

The St. Joan of Arc Auxiliary was founded on April 12th, 2008.

Our meetings are held on the 2nd Thursday of each month at 6:30 pm in room 255 at the Epps Bridge campus.

For more information, please contact Dee Elliott via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Craft Guild

The St Joseph Craft Guild is a group of volunteers who create craft items from materials they provide as well as donated.   The guild holds an annual sale and will also rent out stalls to other crafters to raise additional money for various charities.

If you are interested in donating materials or learning more about the group, please contact Dee Elliott via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

The following pictures were taken during one of our past Craft Guild Sales.

craft guild projects

Gift Shop

Our gift shop is located upstairs in Room 253. We are open twice monthly and have a wide selection of religious items including rosaries, statues, books and more!

For more information, please contact Laura Onstott via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Knights of Columbus

Deacon William P. Lakin, Council 6514

The Deacon William P. Lakin, Council 6514 of the Knights of Columbus is a growing organization of Catholic men focusing on using their talents and creativity to foster our charitable contributions as well as our spiritual growth.

We are affiliated with and work hand-in-hand with our sister Columbiettes.

The Council consists of members from St. Joseph Parish and the UGA Catholic Center. Members work closely with the Athens community, providing funds for various projects, and charities with members also being active participants in their parish and the local catholic schools.

For more information, contact Grand Knight Arnie Terrell via our Parish Life Inquiry Form.

 

Nursery

We provide a nursery for our during our 10:00 AM and 12:00 PM Sunday Masses. Located in the school Pre-K/Kindergarten room, we welcome children 6 months to 4 years old.

For more information, or to volunteer, please contact Jenny Williams via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Welcome Committee

The Welcome Committee greets visitors and newly registered parishioners with a warm welcome and encouragement to become an active member of our parish. They also facilitate registrations after weekend Masses and hosts social events for new parishioners.

For more information, or to volunteer, please contact Dave and Betty Beck via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Young at Heart

The Young at Heart Ministry was started here at St Joseph’s more than 35 years ago.  It is geared towards senior citizens and anyone else who is “young at heart”.

The group provides an opportunity to share faith, fun, and food each month as we meet for lunch in the Parish Hall following  First Friday Mass, which is held at 12 Noon the first Friday of each month.

Volunteers provide the food or arrange for catering. We celebrate monthly holidays, birthdays and other milestones, and we have drawings for door prizes.

For more information, please contact Betty Anne Dye via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form. 

Our social teaching is based on and inseparable from our understanding that every human being is created in the image of God and redeemed by Jesus Christ, and therefore is invaluable and worthy of respect as a member of the human family. Every person, from the moment of conception to natural death, has inherent dignity and a right to a life consistent with that dignity. Human dignity comes from God, not from any human quality or accomplishment.

 

Click here for information from the US Bishops on:
Justice and Peace

Human Rights and Social Concerns Committee

Through our Human Rights and Social Concerns Committee, we seek to address the many issues that confront us…poverty, hunger, housing, homelessness, and immigration– educate and advocate for the least among us.

Our activities also include assisting with local Habitat for Humanity’s home builds.

For more information, please contact Deacon Jim Gaudin via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

Local Assistance

While we do not have the capability at St. Joseph to offer assistance with meal and shelter, below are a list of local organizations that do:

Day Shelter:

-Homeless Day Service Center 706-354-1154

-Sparrow’s Nest 706-247-2365 

Shelter, Men only:

-Bigger Vision Community Shelter 706-340-6062

-Salvation Army Homeless Shelter 706-543-5350

Shelter, Women and Children only:

-Athens Homeless Shelter 706-354-0423

Shelter, family: 

-Interfaith Hospitality Network 706-425-1881

Food:

-Food Served Daily:

9 AM and Noon at First Baptist

5 PM at Salvation Army

-The Ark Food Bank 706-548-8155

-Food Bank of NE Georgia 706-354-8191

-ACTS 770- 725-2330

Emergency Assistance: 

-GA Crisis Hotline 800-715-4224

-Suicide Hotline 800-784-2433

-Samaritan Counseling Athens 706-369-7911

-The Cottage (Sexual Assault) 877-363-1912

-Project Safe (Domestic Violence) 706-543-3331

-DFACS 706-227-7000

Financial Assistance

St. Joseph Charities 706-850-7777 

Medical Assistance: 

AIDS Athens 706-549-3730

Piedmont Athens Regional 706-475-7000

St. Mary’s Hospital 706-389-3427

 

Interfaith Hospitality Network

Interfaith Hospitality Network of AthensThe Interfaith Hospitality Network is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to provide immediate shelter and guidance to homeless families in the Athens area. They are located at 393 W Hancock Ave, Athens, GA 30601 and depend on volunteers to carry out their mission.

To find out more about the Interfaith Hospitality Network of Athens please visit their website.

For more information, or to volunteer through St. Joseph Church, please contact Jeanne Das via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

Prison Ministry

Athens-Clarke County JailIn this ministry, we visit and/or write to prisoners at the Athens-Clarke County Jail who request a visit or mail.  Bible study for prisoners is conducted periodically when the Chaplain of the Jail contacts us to set up a date/time.

The Parochial Vicar of St. Joseph’s conducts a Spanish service/Bible Study on the 4th Thursday of every month.

For more information, please contact Charles or Dori Porter via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

Religious Freedom

Our religious freedom as Americans is guaranteed in the First Amendment to the Bill of Rights: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, nor prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . .”

The Religious Freedom Committee of St. Joseph’s parish aims to guard and protect the religious freedom that we enjoy as citizens of the United States. We inform our parish of issues that threaten religious freedom and recommend courses of action to combat these threats. We are not a partisan group, and we confront these issues wherever they may exist.

For more information, please contact Marty Lendenham via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

Who We Are: 

This committee was formed on July Fourth, 2013, to take action against the attack on religious freedom that is included in the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly known as Obamacare. This act defines a religious organization in a way that includes only the worship facility and excludes many of our charitable organizations as well as our educational institutions. Yet Holy Scripture tells us in the Epistle of St. James that worship is only the beginning of the true definition. “Be doers of the Word and not hearers only, deluding yourselves . . . . Religion that is pure and undefiled before God and the Father is this: to care for orphans and widows in their affliction and to keep oneself unstained by the world.”

Our American bishops have called for our support for religious freedom, and we are acting in response to their call.

It is important to note that leaders of other religions have joined the Catholic Church in protesting these provisions of the ACA. Among those testifying before Congress and speaking out against the violation of the First Amendment were Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist and Jewish leaders.

What We Do: 

We informed our parish of the unjust provisions of the ACA. We conducted a letter writing campaign directed towards the two Georgia senators and our representatives in the House, as well as Speaker of the House John Boehner. We asked each of these elected officials to support the Healthcare Conscience Rights Act, which will protect people of all faiths. On the weekend of August 17-18, nearly 300 parishioners signed letters to these officials that were then mailed by the Religious Freedom Committee.

How You Can Help:

Stay informed! 
The Human Life Action Life Center is the U.S. Bishops public policy arm and is a great way to keep up to date on all issues.

Contact your elected officials!
Write our U.S. Senators at:

Office of Senator (Name)
United States Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

Write our US Representatives at:
Office of Representative (Name)
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Call the US Capitol Switchboard at:
(202) 224-3121

CALL TO PRAYER

Join us on the third Saturday of each month at the 8:30 AM Mass at Prince Avenue which is dedicated for all persecuted Christians and other believers. Mass is followed by a Rosary.

Also on the third weekend of each month before all Masses, we recite the US Bishop’s  Prayer for Religious Liberty

Respect Life Ministry

Respect Life Advocates is a pro-life organization at St. Joseph Parish formed to promote the Catholic Church’s teaching on the respect, care and protection of human life from conception to natural death. We participate in the annual 40 Days for Life campaign locally and in Atlanta.

For more information, please contact Rosemary Risse via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

St. Joseph Charities

“Conditional assistance is given with unconditional love” 

St. Joseph Charities assists our parishioners and others in our community who have emergency financial needs.  We serve Clarke, Oconee, Jackson, Madison and Oglethorpe counties and work by appointment only.

The Charities office accepts calls Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 10:00 am to Noon. Their direct line is (706) 850-7777. Clients are asked to not leave messages but speak directly to a volunteer to make an appointment.

Clients are interviewed and if eligible will meet with a trained volunteer to determine possible assistance with rent/mortgage or non-narcotic prescriptions. All clients leave with a plan in place to try to resolve their financial problems in the future.

For more information, or to volunteer, please contact Dee Elliott via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

 

Liturgy

The most important thing we do at St. Joseph is to gather together to celebrate Sunday Eucharist. When we share Eucharist, we become more and more the one we remember, the one we praise and thank, and the one whose Body and Blood we eat and drink.  In short, we become the Body of Jesus, the Christ.  When we celebrate Eucharist, Jesus is present, visible, and active in and through us, continuing his work in the world, loving the world on behalf of the Father.

We help facilitate the celebration of the liturgy by providing  Altar Servers to assist the celebrant, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion for distributing the Eucharist, Ushers for seating the congregation and collecting the offertory, Announcers to introduce the Liturgy, Lectors to proclaim the Scriptures, Greeters to welcome those who come to Mass, and Music to enhance the worship experience.

 

Altar Servers

altar servers at st. josephAltar Servers assist the priest during Mass and may be boys or girls who have made their First Communion.

For more information, please contact, John Andrew Seymour via our Liturgical Inquiry Form.

If you are interested in applying, please complete the online  Altar Server Application 

 

REMINDERS

*Please refer to the handbook for additional details

  • Servers must find their own replacement if unable to serve when scheduled. We will provide emails for all to assist you.
    If you are sick, please send an email to those that you are serving with to let them know that you will be absent.
  • All servers should arrive 15 minutes before mass and remember to sign in, as attendance will be recorded.
  • Appropriate dress is required: Dark pants (no shorts or jeans), solid color shirt, black shoes (closed-toe – no sneakers, sandals, flip flops or platform shoes), long hair should be in a ponytail or bun. Altar servers who are not dressed appropriately may be asked to not serve that day.

Altar Society

This is a special group that often works in concert with the Art and Environment ministry.  Four teams alternate each week to collect and wash altar linens, and straighten and dust the sanctuary and the chapel.  A team will volunteer for three hours each month.  They do not vacuum, wash windows or do heavy cleaning.  Three times a year there is a workday and all members are invited to assist.

For more information on this ministry, please contact Chairperson, Lola Gazda via our Liturgical Inquiry Form

 

Arts and Environment

This group is responsible for the overall appearance of the sanctuary including coordination of the banners with the liturgical seasons and the placement of flowers and other items to make the sanctuary a more appealing and prayerful environment for worship. This is especially done during Holy Days, Easter Tridium,  Advent and Christmas.

If you are interested in helping with this ministry please contact, Mary Lou Griffin via our  Liturgical Inquiry Form

 

Extraordinary Ministers

Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion assist the priest in the distribution of Communion during the Liturgy and in visits to those ill or homebound.

For the most comprehensive information about  this ministry please read
How to Become an Extraordinary Minister

If you are interested in becoming an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion, please contact Dave Wilkinson via our Liturgical Inquiry Form.

Flower Donations

This ministry ensures that we have flowers around the altar and in the sanctuary each week. These flowers are usually donated by parishioners in celebration of happy events or in memory of special loved ones. We also offer opportunities to donate for our annual Easter lilies and Christmas poinsettias.  Volunteers also water, care and replaced when necessary.

If you are interested in joining this ministry or donating flowers for use in the sanctuary, please contact Bev Fricks via our Liturgical Inquiry Form.

Lectors

This ministry is responsible for the reading of the Word of God during liturgies, along with reciting prayers of the faithful and giving announcements or other directions as needed.  Training is held periodically throughout the year.

If you are interested in joining this ministry area, please contact Jeanne Das via our  Liturgical Inquiry Form.

Additional information about the responsibilities of this ministry area can be found
in The Effective Lector.

Music and Choirs

Our  Music Ministry is under the direction of Gerard Mirandilla. He coordinates all musical needs for our Parish activities, most importantly our weekend Masses, weddings and funerals.  He also directs other special Eucharistic celebrations, like our annual John Paul II Mass and Feast of St. Joseph Mass, and organizes a Unified Choir, which is a collaboration of available members of the different choral groups, to provide music during such occasions. Gerard also provides support to the other choral groups when needed and assists with other Parish activities.

For information on any of our choirs, contact us via our Liturgical Inquiry Form or individual coordinators.

Director of Music Ministries
Gerard Mirandilla

Music Ministry group picture

For information on any of our choirs, contact us via our Liturgical Inquiry Form or individual coordinators.

Glory and Praise Choir         Coordinator: Gerard Mirandilla


From the quartet that comprised this group in the early 2000s, this choir has grown considerably to its current ensemble of singers and instrumentalists and different members sing at the 5:30 PM Saturday, 8 AM and 12 Noon Sunday Masses.  They provide a mix of traditional and contemporary music that are selected to enhances the understanding and appreciation of the biblical readings for the week. The melodious choral arrangements are usually augmented by piano, organ, violin, flute, and guitar (classical and bass) accompaniment. Anyone with the slightest interest in music and strong enthusiasm to sing is invited to join this choir family! 

The practice on Mondays at 6 PM in Room 251.

They also gather about once a month in a private residence for their weekly rehearsal that concludes with the celebration of choir members’ recent birthdays.  Such periodic social gatherings only reinforce personal bonds among members of this closely-knit choral group.

Glory and praise choir group photo

.
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Luz y Esperanza Choir

Coordinator: Jorge Galdamez

This Spanish Choir  combines music and instruments from Central and South American cultures. It is accompanied by guitar, piano, and percussion instruments.

They practice on Saturday at 6 PM in Room 226.
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St. Cecilia Choir
Coordinator:  Mark Wenthe

The choir for the 10:00 AM Mass leads the congregation in singing and encourages all parishioners to participate. It does this through primarily traditional church music of composers from the classics to modern, from Gregorian chant to folk music, blending men’s and women’s voices in harmony or unison. The choir is accompanied by the organ. The choir is open to all. One does not have to have a trained singing voice or be able to read music. A love of singing is the only requirement.

They practice on Wednesdays at 6 PM and also 9:30 am prior to mass.
————————————————————————————————-Laudate Si Choir
Coordinator: Vitelio Tejada

They practice on Sundays  at 12:30 PM in Room 226.
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Praise band choir

Praise Band Choir
Coordinator: Chris Henderson

The Praise Band shares their ministry primarily in Christian contemporary music. The ensemble is comprised of members of high school juniors or seniors, UGA students and other members of the parish family. On any given Sunday, the 6:00 pm Eucharistic celebration may be supplemented with vocals, guitar, piano, and drums.

The Praise Band practices on Sunday at 4:30 PM. We are always open to new members with a heartfelt desire to make a joyful noise unto the Lord!
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children's choir

Youth Choir
Coordinator: Julia Seymour

In addition to our many choirs for adults, we are also blessed to have the Youth Choir at St. Joseph Parish! The choir is students, 3rd – 12th grade.

They practice once a week and sing monthly at the 12 Noon Masses. They also sing at the annual Parish Christmas Party, Annual Tea Party, Hispanic Community Christmas Party, at the Nursing Home during the Holy Week Mission, and at other Parish events.

2019-2020: Sep 8, Oct 13, Nov 10, Dec 8, Jan 12, Feb 9, Mar 8, Apr 26, and May 10.

Interested? Please fill out the interest form at https://tinyurl.com/yy5byld5

 

 

 

Ushers and Greeters

Ushers and Greeters welcome and assist parishioners to find seating during Mass, take up the collections, find someone to bring up the offertory gifts, and distribute bulletins as parishioners leave.

If you are interested in becoming an Usher or Greeter, please contact Al Johnson via our Liturgical Inquiry Form.

Spiritual Life

The life of a Catholic makes no sense unless it is a life of constant spiritual growth. To cease to grow in our spiritual lives is to become indifferent to God, deaf to Christ’s constant loving call to us. It is our duty — and it should be our joy — to strive to grow toward Christ in the way that a flower grows toward the sun.

These ministries give us the opportunity to not only serve the Lord but to also grow our faith beyond our Confirmation into the Church.

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is both a prayer and a ministry.

monstrance with the consecrated hostAs a prayer, we adore and glorify God, thanking him for the gift of his Son. Adoration is one way we come closer to God.

As a ministry, we take time out of our busy day to be in the presence of our Lord.  Every Friday with the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament those called to this ministry are asked to commit an hour of their time and remain in the presence of our Lord.  During the day when the Blessed Sacrament is exposed a Guardian must be present.

If you feel called to serve our Lord as a Guardian of the Blessed Sacrament, or for more information, please contact, Liz Fontaine via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

Bible Study

Women’s Bible Study:

The women’s program uses a a study from Endow called Letter to Women. It is a good introduction to the Christian concept of woman and her indispensable role in the Church, the family, society, and the world,” which is based on the teachings of John Paul II.

The classes meet September-April on Thursday mornings at 9 am till 11 am in the Youth Room and begin with refreshments and coffee. The cost is $75 which includes all course materials and childcare. Pre-registration is required to participate.

for more information, please contact, Heather Gardner via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

Men’s Bible Study: 

All men are welcome to join this year-round Catholic men’s program focusing on the role of men in their families and the church.
Meetings are held Wednesdays at 7 AM along with coffee and donuts;  no childcare is available.

for more information, please contact, Phil Tybor via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

 

Teen Bible Study: 

High School teens in grades 9-12, have bible study in addition to their Youth Group. Girls Bible Study meets on  Tuesdays, 7 PM and Boys Bible Study begins Thursdays,7 PM, both in the Youth Room.

For more information, please contact HS Youth Directors, Justin and Megan Estes via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

 

Funeral Planning

When a loved one dies those who are left behind are often unable to cope with the tasks necessary to lay their loved one to rest, particularly if the death was unexpected. One of these tasks is the planning of the Funeral Liturgy including the selection of appropriate readings, ensuring a priest and altar servers are available, and coordinating the music for the liturgy.

For more information, please contact Susan Deutch  via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

If your family has experienced a death and you need to plan a  funeral, please contact the Parish office:
706-548-6223.
secretary@stjosephathens.com

Home Groups

The St. Joseph Home Groups or small groups program is alive and vibrant in our parish. These are groups of 10-12 adults meeting in people’s homes or even at a restaurant or pub. Our goal is to break bread together, break into the Word and Faith together and then break out into the world. We discuss the faith using great Catholic and priest-approved studies such as The Bible and Virgin Mary, The Bible, and the Sacraments, the Catholicism series by Bishop Barron and other such similar studies. Each group selects a Facilitator, a Parish contact, and a coordinator to handle schedule and meals.

For more information, please contact, Jenny and Ben Williams via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

Liturgy of the Hours

The Liturgy of the Hours or Divine Office is often referred to as the Breviary and is the official set of prayers “marking the hours of each day and sanctifying the day with prayer”.

Readings and prayers are held in the Chapel.
8:10 AM,  Monday – Saturday.

liturgy of the hours picture

Women's Evening of Reflection

Women’s Evening of Reflection
We have a new program for women this year, An Evening of Reflection.
Beginning with Mass and Adoration, the evening will also include dinner and discussion on a variety of topics. The group meets on the second Monday of the month.

For more information, please contact, Tracy Cullom via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

To send a RSVP to a gathering, submit it to: womensEOR@gmail.com

Consecration to Mary

Consecration through Mary
Using books and video material provided by Father Hugh Gillespie of the Company of Mary, this series follows the 33 day method laid out by St. Louis de Montfort (d. 1713) in his great work True Devotion.
Each day contains 2-3 short prayers, a scripture passage, an excerpt from de Montfort’s writings, and a question on which to meditate throughout the day. After the 33 days, on a Marian feast day, you may consecrate yourself totally to Jesus through Mary.

For more information, see the Information link below or contact, Liz Fontaine via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

Consecration Information

Click here register for our next session, Oct 25-Dec 2:

Consecration Registration

Sick and Homebound

The Sick and Homebound ministry is dedicated to assisting those members of our parish who are unable to participate fully in our parish life due to illness or another incapacity. This may include bringing the Holy Eucharist to these parishioners. Because of the highly vulnerable nature of those being ministered to, the Archdiocese requires volunteers in this ministry undergo special training as well as a background check.

If you are in need of a visit,  please contact the Parish office:
706-548-6332
secretary@stjosephathens.com

If you are interested in assisting in this ministry, please contact:
Mary Lauren Schroeder 
706-254-6675
marylaurenschroeder@gmail.com

Disciples of Jesus and Mary

Disciples of Jesus and Mary
The Disciples of Jesus and Mary (DJM) is a spiritual formation program that offers all to grow spiritually and to work effectively in the world. It draws material from the Gospels, the teachings of the Church, and spiritual authors. The program, founded by Fr. Santan Pinto, S.O.L.T. offers how to discover your plan of life and helps us to recognize the way the Lord has been forming us throughout our entire life.
You can learn more about this program at disciplesofjesusandmary.org

For more information, please contact, Julie and Eric Kuehler via our Spiritual Life Inquiry Form.

 

Parish Life

The parish community has a special role in promoting participation in the life, mission, and work of the faith community.

The parish is where the Church lives. Parishes are communities of faith, of action, and of hope. Not only are they where the Gospel is proclaimed and celebrated, but where believers join in fellowship. An extension of our own homes, our Parish is the heart of our Catholic community. Parish life enables God’s people to meet Jesus in word, sacrament and in each other.

Check out our Photo Albums to see some of the fun things we do at St. Joseph’s!

Athens Catholic Radio

Athens Catholic Radio is a ministry dedicated to reaching and serving our community through an encouraging, Christian community that learns and prays together.

The station broadcasts EWTN Radio programming in English and Spanish, delivering a schedule tailored to the needs of our unique community. Programs include EWTN live, EWTN Classics, Radio Catolica Mundail as well as several popular EWTN talk shows.

Athens Catholic Radio operates under the authority of an Advisory Board under the direction of St. Joseph Pastoral Parish Council.

You can find it on the dial at 105.7 FM.

Check out their website for programming schedules:
https://www.athenscatholicradio.com/

For more information, please contact George Sigalas via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Columbiettes

The St. Joan of Arc Auxilliary 6514 of the Columbiettes is a growing organization of Catholic women focusing on using their talents and creativity to foster our charitable contributions as well as our spiritual growth.

We are affiliated with and work hand-in-hand with our brother Knights of Columbus.

The St. Joan of Arc Auxiliary was founded on April 12th, 2008.

Our meetings are held on the 2nd Thursday of each month at 6:30 pm in room 255 at the Epps Bridge campus.

For more information, please contact Dee Elliott via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Craft Guild

The St Joseph Craft Guild is a group of volunteers who create craft items from materials they provide as well as donated.   The guild holds an annual sale and will also rent out stalls to other crafters to raise additional money for various charities.

If you are interested in donating materials or learning more about the group, please contact Dee Elliott via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

The following pictures were taken during one of our past Craft Guild Sales.

craft guild projects

Gift Shop

Our gift shop is located upstairs in Room 253. We are open twice monthly and have a wide selection of religious items including rosaries, statues, books and more!

For more information, please contact Laura Onstott via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Knights of Columbus

Deacon William P. Lakin, Council 6514

The Deacon William P. Lakin, Council 6514 of the Knights of Columbus is a growing organization of Catholic men focusing on using their talents and creativity to foster our charitable contributions as well as our spiritual growth.

We are affiliated with and work hand-in-hand with our sister Columbiettes.

The Council consists of members from St. Joseph Parish and the UGA Catholic Center. Members work closely with the Athens community, providing funds for various projects, and charities with members also being active participants in their parish and the local catholic schools.

For more information, contact Grand Knight Arnie Terrell via our Parish Life Inquiry Form.

 

Nursery

We provide a nursery for our during our 10:00 AM and 12:00 PM Sunday Masses. Located in the school Pre-K/Kindergarten room, we welcome children 6 months to 4 years old.

For more information, or to volunteer, please contact Jenny Williams via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Welcome Committee

The Welcome Committee greets visitors and newly registered parishioners with a warm welcome and encouragement to become an active member of our parish. They also facilitate registrations after weekend Masses and hosts social events for new parishioners.

For more information, or to volunteer, please contact Dave and Betty Beck via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form.

Young at Heart

The Young at Heart Ministry was started here at St Joseph’s more than 35 years ago.  It is geared towards senior citizens and anyone else who is “young at heart”.

The group provides an opportunity to share faith, fun, and food each month as we meet for lunch in the Parish Hall following  First Friday Mass, which is held at 12 Noon the first Friday of each month.

Volunteers provide the food or arrange for catering. We celebrate monthly holidays, birthdays and other milestones, and we have drawings for door prizes.

For more information, please contact Betty Anne Dye via our  Parish Life Inquiry Form. 

Social Concerns

Our social teaching is based on and inseparable from our understanding that every human being is created in the image of God and redeemed by Jesus Christ, and therefore is invaluable and worthy of respect as a member of the human family. Every person, from the moment of conception to natural death, has inherent dignity and a right to a life consistent with that dignity. Human dignity comes from God, not from any human quality or accomplishment.

 

Click here for information from the US Bishops on:
Justice and Peace

Human Rights and Social Concerns Committee

Through our Human Rights and Social Concerns Committee, we seek to address the many issues that confront us…poverty, hunger, housing, homelessness, and immigration– educate and advocate for the least among us.

Our activities also include assisting with local Habitat for Humanity’s home builds.

For more information, please contact Deacon Jim Gaudin via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

Local Assistance

While we do not have the capability at St. Joseph to offer assistance with meal and shelter, below are a list of local organizations that do:

Day Shelter:

-Homeless Day Service Center 706-354-1154

-Sparrow’s Nest 706-247-2365 

Shelter, Men only:

-Bigger Vision Community Shelter 706-340-6062

-Salvation Army Homeless Shelter 706-543-5350

Shelter, Women and Children only:

-Athens Homeless Shelter 706-354-0423

Shelter, family: 

-Interfaith Hospitality Network 706-425-1881

Food:

-Food Served Daily:

9 AM and Noon at First Baptist

5 PM at Salvation Army

-The Ark Food Bank 706-548-8155

-Food Bank of NE Georgia 706-354-8191

-ACTS 770- 725-2330

Emergency Assistance: 

-GA Crisis Hotline 800-715-4224

-Suicide Hotline 800-784-2433

-Samaritan Counseling Athens 706-369-7911

-The Cottage (Sexual Assault) 877-363-1912

-Project Safe (Domestic Violence) 706-543-3331

-DFACS 706-227-7000

Financial Assistance

St. Joseph Charities 706-850-7777 

Medical Assistance: 

AIDS Athens 706-549-3730

Piedmont Athens Regional 706-475-7000

St. Mary’s Hospital 706-389-3427

 

Interfaith Hospitality Network

Interfaith Hospitality Network of AthensThe Interfaith Hospitality Network is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to provide immediate shelter and guidance to homeless families in the Athens area. They are located at 393 W Hancock Ave, Athens, GA 30601 and depend on volunteers to carry out their mission.

To find out more about the Interfaith Hospitality Network of Athens please visit their website.

For more information, or to volunteer through St. Joseph Church, please contact Jeanne Das via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

Prison Ministry

Athens-Clarke County JailIn this ministry, we visit and/or write to prisoners at the Athens-Clarke County Jail who request a visit or mail.  Bible study for prisoners is conducted periodically when the Chaplain of the Jail contacts us to set up a date/time.

The Parochial Vicar of St. Joseph’s conducts a Spanish service/Bible Study on the 4th Thursday of every month.

For more information, please contact Charles or Dori Porter via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

Religious Freedom

Our religious freedom as Americans is guaranteed in the First Amendment to the Bill of Rights: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, nor prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . .”

The Religious Freedom Committee of St. Joseph’s parish aims to guard and protect the religious freedom that we enjoy as citizens of the United States. We inform our parish of issues that threaten religious freedom and recommend courses of action to combat these threats. We are not a partisan group, and we confront these issues wherever they may exist.

For more information, please contact Marty Lendenham via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

Who We Are: 

This committee was formed on July Fourth, 2013, to take action against the attack on religious freedom that is included in the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly known as Obamacare. This act defines a religious organization in a way that includes only the worship facility and excludes many of our charitable organizations as well as our educational institutions. Yet Holy Scripture tells us in the Epistle of St. James that worship is only the beginning of the true definition. “Be doers of the Word and not hearers only, deluding yourselves . . . . Religion that is pure and undefiled before God and the Father is this: to care for orphans and widows in their affliction and to keep oneself unstained by the world.”

Our American bishops have called for our support for religious freedom, and we are acting in response to their call.

It is important to note that leaders of other religions have joined the Catholic Church in protesting these provisions of the ACA. Among those testifying before Congress and speaking out against the violation of the First Amendment were Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist and Jewish leaders.

What We Do: 

We informed our parish of the unjust provisions of the ACA. We conducted a letter writing campaign directed towards the two Georgia senators and our representatives in the House, as well as Speaker of the House John Boehner. We asked each of these elected officials to support the Healthcare Conscience Rights Act, which will protect people of all faiths. On the weekend of August 17-18, nearly 300 parishioners signed letters to these officials that were then mailed by the Religious Freedom Committee.

How You Can Help:

Stay informed! 
The Human Life Action Life Center is the U.S. Bishops public policy arm and is a great way to keep up to date on all issues.

Contact your elected officials!
Write our U.S. Senators at:

Office of Senator (Name)
United States Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

Write our US Representatives at:
Office of Representative (Name)
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Call the US Capitol Switchboard at:
(202) 224-3121

CALL TO PRAYER

Join us on the third Saturday of each month at the 8:30 AM Mass at Prince Avenue which is dedicated for all persecuted Christians and other believers. Mass is followed by a Rosary.

Also on the third weekend of each month before all Masses, we recite the US Bishop’s  Prayer for Religious Liberty

Respect Life Ministry

Respect Life Advocates is a pro-life organization at St. Joseph Parish formed to promote the Catholic Church’s teaching on the respect, care and protection of human life from conception to natural death. We participate in the annual 40 Days for Life campaign locally and in Atlanta.

For more information, please contact Rosemary Risse via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

St. Joseph Charities

“Conditional assistance is given with unconditional love” 

St. Joseph Charities assists our parishioners and others in our community who have emergency financial needs.  We serve Clarke, Oconee, Jackson, Madison and Oglethorpe counties and work by appointment only.

The Charities office accepts calls Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 10:00 am to Noon. Their direct line is (706) 850-7777. Clients are asked to not leave messages but speak directly to a volunteer to make an appointment.

Clients are interviewed and if eligible will meet with a trained volunteer to determine possible assistance with rent/mortgage or non-narcotic prescriptions. All clients leave with a plan in place to try to resolve their financial problems in the future.

For more information, or to volunteer, please contact Dee Elliott via our  Social Concerns Inquiry Form.

 

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