Photo of Bible with a small crown whose shadow forms a heart.

STK Church News

May 24th, 2020

Topic: St. Teresa of Kolkata Catholic Church - Maynardville - English Mass

Time: Sun May 24, 2020 9am – 10:30am Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Glenmary Missioners is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Join Zoom Meeting:

Meeting ID: 811 5078 0058

    Dial by your location:
  • +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
  • +1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
  • +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
  • +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
  • +1 253 215 8782 US
  • +1 301 715 8592 US

Find your local number:

March 26th, 2020

Letter to the Faithful

From: Fr. Neil Pezzulo

To: St. Teresa of Kolkata Church, Maynardville
St. John Paul II Church, Rutledge

Greetings to each of you this Thursday morning,

We are certainly having a time adjusting to the new social distancing and the shutdown of many restaurants, businesses and Churches we often frequent, yet I remain positive that we will come out of all this stronger and more committed than before. I am struck by how some people are taking it quite seriously while others are not even the least inconvenienced by this pandemic; truly it depends on the person and how seriously they heed the warnings from the experts. Please be sure to pray for them.

We take all of this quite seriously, whereas we have not done well with social distancing or staying home we are adjusting to this new reality while still striving to serve as your ministers. We will maintain some office hours but we will have to limit them for the health and safety of our coworkers, Sally and Lynn.

We remain available as needed, simply call or text if there is anything we can do to help. The Church remains open for private prayer. At times the Blessed Sacrament will be exposed so please be aware of that as you enter and exit the Church. Still we find ourselves with no option for a public Mass, which has now been extended past Holy Week and Easter. We have posted the latest decree on the doors of the Church and will have copies available. However, the Sacrament of Reconciliation is always available, please reach out to Fr. Neil and let him know if you wish to go to confession.

Deacon Larry has been actively reaching out to the local community and we will be helping to ensure over 30 families with school aged children who depend on school breakfasts and lunches will have some food. If you want to help, let Deacon Larry know and he will hook you up.

Early Monday morning while praying for everyone and the situation I was drawn to a quote from a poem by Wendell Berry, a writer and poet who resides on the family farm he grew up on in Kentucky. I am asking you all to take time and prayerfully consider what he has to say:

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

— Wendell Berry, "The Peace of Wild Things"

Every day it seems there is some new news and increased numbers of infected people. We are fervently praying for Italy right now, we hope you are too. Routinely a recommendation for a new normal is being asked of us until this is over and it is hard to keep up. Let’s remember to be vigilant and not succumb to any sort of COVID-19 fatigue.

We are trying to adjust to this new normal with online streaming of the Masses. Last Sunday we were met with a fair amount of success and we will be shortly sending out information on how to connect for next Sunday’s Masses, which will be streamed on YouTube. The Mass times will be 9:00 a.m. in English and 11:00 a.m. in Spanish.

As we will be celebrating mass from our homes due to coronavirus, consider baking bread this weekend to eat yourself or to share with loved ones in your home. This simple bread recipe only uses 5 ingredients and does not require yeast. Having this bread may add to the Spiritual Communion we will be celebrating.

    Navajo Flatbread: Makes 6
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups of lukewarm water
  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons oil (canola oil, vegetable oil, or shortening work best)
  • … Additional 1-2 Tablespoons oil (for frying)

  • Mix flour, salt, baking powder & 2 tsp. canola oil together in a mixing bowl and add most of the water. Continue mixing and adding water until it has the consistency of tacky pizza dough.
  • Knead for a few minutes.
  • Let rest in greased bowl for 30- 60 minutes.
  • Divide into 6 pieces and roll out very thin (tortilla thickness) onto a floured surface.
  • Heat cast iron skillet or griddle to 350F & add 1 T. canola oil. Heat oil til hot but not smoky hot.
  • Cook until golden brown spots appear on one side.. then flip and cook the other side until done.
  • These can be made ahead and kept under a flour sack towel (up to 2 days) or frozen in a Ziplock bag for later use.

Hope this helps.

Very Special thanks to: Brandon Johnson from the The Brass Kettle for this recipe.

Please know that in these confusing time, we are holding you and your prayer intentions (provided they are noble) in our thoughts and prayers as well.

Peace and Blessings,
Father Neil & Deacon Larry

P.S. We are still accepting tithes. The bills keep coming.

March 21st, 2020

Greetings on this rainy and cold Tuesday morning,

As you have likely heard today that all Masses have been suspending here in the diocese of Knoxville beginning in March 20th for the foreseeable future. This decision was not made lightly and comes at a cost for both the larger Catholic community and as individual Catholics.

I have no idea how this will affect our upcoming Holy Week and Easter celebrations let alone the weddings, 1sts Communions and Confirmations already on our Church calendar. Yet, I remain hopeful and have decided to use this time of social distancing to fast and pray for the victims of this pandemic and the health care professionals who will care for those who are sick. I invite you do join me in these prayers.

As a Priest, I cannot imagine not attending, let alone celebrating a Sunday Mass, however prudence is a virtue and with all the unknowns right now, prudence is the wise choice.

The Church will be open every day and the readings for that day will be displayed prominently in front of the altar. Please feel free to stop by and say a prayer or two (but keep your distance from each other).

I thought that this is also a time to be creative in how we engage each other as a faith community and ask that each of you be aware of what is happening around you with your neighbors, friends and family. Many of whom may not be able to shop, visits doctors, vote and any number of the “regular” things of life. Please help them or let me know and I will try to help them.

If any of you need groceries or medicines and cannot or do not wish to go out in public let me know, I will arrange for someone to shop for you and all we ask in return is that you pay for your groceries. No gas, no time and certainly no tip, this is not Uber eats, it’s a way we can reach out to our sisters and brothers in Christ.

For this upcoming Sunday we are going to try something different. We will be hosting a Zoom meeting which if you follow the links in this letter you can participate in the Sunday Mass via the internet.

When you click on the like you may be asked to download Zoom before anything happens. You will have the option of video or audio (or both). This way you can stay home, be safe and at least participate in the Sunday liturgy. This is an experiment so we’ll see how it goes.

The Zoom meeting/ Mass will be Sunday at 9am (for English Mass) and 11am (for Spanish Mass).

Let’s hold each other close in prayer as we walk together on this unknown and unfamiliar road this lent.

Peace and Prayers,

Fr. Neil

    Dial by your location:
  • +1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
  • +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
  • +1 301 715 8592 US
  • +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
  • +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
  • +1 253 215 8782 US

Find your local number: