January 9, 2011

On January 1st we lost a beloved and brilliant priest in Fr. Al McPartland.

Reverend Aloysius M. McPartland, M.S. died January 1, 2011 at the Frances Georgeson Hospice House.  He was 91.  Fr. Al had been a resident of Naples since 1999 coming from Phoenicia, NY.  Aloysius Mathias McPartland was born July 20, 1919 in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn, New York.  His Irish parents, Philip and Beatrice, had five children; John, Mary, Aloysius, Thomas and Muriel.

The earliest pictures of Fr. Al show him as an altar boy, a golfer, a baseball player, and as a successful teenage Golden Gloves boxer.  Fr. Al was a graduate of New York University with a degree in accounting.

Fr. Al entered the LaSalette seminary in Ipswich, Massachusetts and on March 25, 1947 he was ordained into the Missionaries of LaSalette by Archbishop (later Cardinal) Richard Cushing.  Father Al held numerous positions within the LaSalette Order.  He spent time teaching at the seminaries in Milford, Iowa and in Hartford, Connecticut.  He also was Director of the LaSalette Seminarians, Provincial Treasurer of the Order, and for 16 years had a preaching vocation.  He preached in the Far East, Central America and all areas of the United States.  It comes as no surprise to all who knew him that Fr. Al was the most requested homilist in any area he visited.  Additionally, Father Al served as pastor in two LaSalette parishes:  Our Lady of sorrows, Hartford, CT and as pastor of St. Frances de Sales, Phoenicia, NY.  This latter parish, located in the Catskills, was served by Fr. Al for 20 years.  In 1999 Fr. Al retired to Naples where he was an active priest at St. John the Evangelist Parish until his death.

He is survived by his sister-in-law, Adele McPartland of Naples; nine nieces and nephews and many great nieces and nephews and a special friend, Terence P. Feehan of Montauk, NY.  He was preceded in death by his parents and his two sisters and two brothers.

Fr. Al’s family would like to acknowledge and express their appreciation for the many acts of kindness and generosity extended to Father Al by the parishioners of St. John the Evangelist, and in particular, Dennis and Fran Powers.

Memorial contributions in the name of Father Aloysius McPartland are requested to Missionaries of LaSalette – 915 Maples Ave., Hartford, CT 06114-2330.

After the coldest December in recorded history in Southwest Florida, the new year rolled in “like a lamb” with temperatures in the middle 70’s which was a very pleasant change for those of us that are not used to unseasonably cold weather.  We were lucky to escape serious damage to our landscaping here at St. John the Evangelist even though we had a hard frost (Attached picture of Naples version of snow) in late December.  Temperatures are forecast to drop below seasonal averages once again this weekend.  After returning from Mass on Christmas Eve, my neighbor explained that he had read my weather report in Scott’s Corner.  He questioned why I chose to write about the weather.  For those of you who are not aware, in my previous life I received my undergraduate degree in meteorology from Florida State University.  Although my career path took a very unexpected change, I still enjoy following the weather and trends that affect our climate in Southwest Florida.  If you are ever in need of a quick forecast, give me a call and I will be more than happy to oblige.

Paul Todd is making a much awaited return to perform a concert here at St. John the Evangelist.  Joining Paul will be Catholic recording artist Gabriela Frei.  This “Concert for Life” will benefit the Pro-Life Ministries of Collier County including the Sunlight Home, Providence House and Collier Pregnancy Centers, Inc.  The concert will take place on Thursday, January 27th at 6:30 pm in the PLC ballroom.  This will be the first opportunity for our seasonal residents to see Paul here in concert in well over a year.  Please see the full page flyer in this bulletin for further details.  Tickets may be purchased in the parish office for $25.

As the eternal optimist, I am praying that we exceeded our goal for the 2010 Catholic Faith Appeal.  We had several large late year gifts which should put us over the top.  The Catholic Center was closed the week between Christmas and the New Year which means that they are still calculating the totals.  I will take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you that contributed to the annual appeal in 2010.  I will also take this opportunity to announce a respite for the next several weeks.  You will read nothing regarding the CFA until we kick off the new campaign in February.  Thanks again for your generosity.

Thank you so much for supporting St. John the Evangelist.

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