Good News From the Apostles

There are many exciting things happening in our vibrant and growing congregation! We’ve included all the latest news and our most recent publications here. Visit our News page often to stay updated.

Annual Holly Berry Festival Returns November 22–23

Woman standing with Santa ClausGet into the Christmas spirit at the 41st annual Holly Berry Festival happening on November 22 and November 23 at Sacred Heart Academy in Hamden. 

Hosted by the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Holly Berry Festival is a two-day craft fair that brings together Christmas shopping, raffle giveaways, entertainment, and family-friendly activities. Event proceeds benefit the retired and infirmed Apostle Sisters.

This year’s event will feature over 45 crafters from across the state, many of whom are new to the festival. Shoppers can also purchase a variety of items made by the Sisters, including festival favorites such as pickled eggplant, fresh fruit jams, and award-winning apple pies - all made using locally-grown produce.

Children’s activities will include pictures with Santa, a Home Depot craft zone, face painting, and more. New this year will be a ticketed meet and greet with Anna and Elsa from Disney’s Frozen on Saturday, November 23 from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. Meet and greet tickets are $10 per child. Please visit our Online Donations page or call (203) 281.2562 to purchase tickets.

Attendees can also enjoy musical performances by Connecticut Yankee Chorus and local school choirs. 

Other festival highlights include raffle drawings, Christmas Tree Lane, and the annual pasta dinner on Friday, November 22 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. Pasta dinner tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children.

The Holly Berry Festival takes place on Friday, November 22 from 3:00 to 8:00 p.m. and on Saturday, November 23 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. inside the Philip Paolella Recreational Center at Sacred Heart Academy at 265 Benham Street, Hamden, CT 06514.

Parking and admission are free! Visit our Holly Berry Festival page for more information.

Profession of First and Perpetual Vows

Sr. Catherine Ann Phillips, ASCJ and Sr. Christine Marie Rattini, ASCJ pose togetherSr. Catherine Ann Phillips, ASCJ, and Sr. Christine Marie Rattini, ASCJ, recently celebrated milestones in their individual journeys as Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

In a Mass celebrated on July 26 by Rev. John Murray of Fairfield University, Sr. Catherine Ann professed her first vows as an Apostle and received the traditional veil and crucifix of a professed Sister. 

A native of St. Louis, Mo., Sr. Catherine Ann is the daughter of Robert and Susan Phillips.View more photos of First VowsShe is a 2009 graduate of Cor Jesu Academy in St. Louis, a ministry of the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and holds a bachelor’s degree in Nonprofit Leadership Studies and Spanish from Rockhurst University. Sr. Catherine entered the Congregation in August 2016. This fall, she will begin her ministry as a teacher’s aide at the Santa Maria early childhood program in the Bronx. 

At the same Eucharistic liturgy, five junior professed Sisters renewed their vows: Sr. Catherine Frances Brodersen, ASCJ; Sr. Elizabeth Doyle, ASCJ; Sr. Allison Lorraine Masserano, ASCJ; Sr. Kelsey Ann Shaver, ASCJ; and Sr. Christina Skelley, ASCJ.

View photos of Perpetual VowsOn July 27, Sr. Christine Marie professed her perpetual vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience in a Mass celebrated by the Most Reverend Juan Miguel Betancourt, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Hartford. 

The daughter of Margaret and the late Robert Rattini of Troy, Mo., Sr. Christine Marie is a 2001 graduate of St. Dominic High School in O’Fallon, Mo. She entered the Apostles in August 2010 and holds a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies from the College of New Rochelle. She will begin teaching at Sacred Heart Villa, an early childhood center in St. Louis founded by the Apostles, in the fall. 

Both vow Masses were held at Mount Sacred Heart Chapel in Hamden. 

Apostle Legacy Exhibit Opens at Provincialate

Main hallway featuring the opportunity to learn about the role prayer, ministry, and community play in the life of an apostleAn historical exhibit dedicated to the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the congregation’s newly beatified foundress, Blessed Clelia Merloni, was unveiled to the public during a dedication ceremony on June 28, the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Featuring interactive audio/visual displays, artifacts, and replicas, the Apostle Legacy Exhibit tells the story of who the apostles are, both past and present, and how the congregation came to be founded. The exhibit’s main attractions include three thematic rooms: The Mission Room, which provides a history of Apostle ministries in the United States; the Founder’s Room, which focuses on the life of Blessed Clelia and her founding the congregation; and a replica of Blessed Clelia’s bedroom in Rome, where she spent the last two-and-a-half years of her life. 

As visitors travel down the main hallway from room to room they have the opportunity to learn about the role prayer, ministry, and community play in the life of an apostle. 

“This exhibit is a true tribute to the legacy the sisters have left here in the United States,” said Sr. Virginia Herbers, ASCJ, who spearheaded the creation and design of the exhibit. “It is also our way of honoring the beatification of Blessed Clelia and allowing her legacy of holiness to bless all those who can benefit from her example of love, mercy, and reparation.”

Housed on the ground floor of Sacred Heart Manor at the United States provincialate in Hamden, Connecticut, the Apostle Legacy Exhibit was made possible through the generosity of the Knights of Columbus Museum, who donated several museum-quality display furnishings, and numerous benefactors. 

The Apostle Legacy Exhibit is open to the public every Sunday from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. and by appointment. To schedule an appointment, call (203) 248.4031. The exhibit entrance is located near the Clelian Center entrance at the rear of 261 Benham Street, Hamden, Connecticut 06514.