For local Christians, Easter Sunday means many things: an observance of the rebirth of Jesus Christ, a celebration of the return of spring, a moment to gather with family and friends to share goodwill and a Marshmallow peep or two. This Sunday, one new member of the St. Roch’s Church’s extended family is preparing to come down for Sunday mass and the Easter festivities: Bishop Frank Caggiano, the recently appointed leader of the Diocese of Bridgeport, of which the Chickahominy Roman Catholic church is a part.
“It’s a big blessing,” said Father Matthew Mauriello. “It’s the Bishop’s first Easter in this Diocese.
Easter Sunday will mark the Bishop’s first visit to St. Roch’s since his installation in August 2013. In the months since rising to the post, Caggiano has been making the rounds to congregations from all corners of Fairfield County Bridgeport to Danbury to Greenwich.
His inaugural visit on arguably the most important holiday for observant Catholics isn’t so much about St. Roch’s’ Easter service itself. It is not the flashiest in the Diocese, nor the largest. Rather, Mauriello said, it’s the product of patience and sensitivity.
“When he was made Bishop, a lot of priests had asked him to come visit their parishes,” he said. “So I wrote to the bishop telling him ‘I know you’re overwhelmed with requests, so come whenever you can.”
His response: “You know what? I’ll come on Easter.”
Now, the congregation is abuzz with excitement for the Bishop’s appearance at Sunday morning‘s service.
“I’m so excited about it,” said Town Clerk Carmella Budkins, a lifelong St. Roch’s parishioner. “It’s an honor that he chose St Roch’s to celebrate his first Easter as bishop. It’s a chance to see what a wonderful and close knit community we have here.”
St. Roch’s Easter mass begins at 9:30 a.m. Sunday at 10 Saint Roch Avenue