In the multitude of years that I served at Saint John the Baptist Church in Scottdale, I often reminded them of the priviledged position of their patron saint. I would remind them that each saint of the Church is recognized on a certain date, most usually on or near the day of their death - their entrance into heaven. In fact, apart from Jesus, there are only two individuals whose biological and heavenly birthdays are celebrated by the Church. They are Mary - birthday on September 8th and death on August 15th - and John the Baptist - birthday on June 24th and martyrdom on August 29th. Both were the first to welcome Jesus into the world by rejoicing in the Good News with the joy within their lives here on earth. Today is the feast of the Passion of Saint John the Baptist (formerly the Martyrdom of John the Baptist). Again, happy feast day to the Scottdale parish.
Saint John the Baptist parish, established in 1878, was recently partnered with their neighbors at Saint Joseph Parish which just celebrated their 125th anniversary last year. Both have wonderful histories and now a good pastor to lead them into working together for the spread of the Gospel. Another thing they have in common are patrons with two feast days, for Joseph also shares in two dates. His are not of birth and death, but of example and relationship. March 19th is the feast of Joseph, the husband of Mary and foster father of Jesus and May 1st is the feast of Joseph the Worker. May the partnering of these parishes go well and produce much fruit.