News Briefs: New JP2 film program, Earth Day Mass, and more


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JPCatholic Announces Feature Film Program
SAN DIEGO – John Paul the Great Catholic University, also known as JPCatholic, has announced the creation of a Feature Film Program, which will provide students with the opportunity to collaborate with alumni and professors each year to bring a new feature film to life.

The program will enable students to earn multiple Internet Movie Database (IMDB) credits, beginning as production assistants and working their way up to key leadership roles as seniors.

The annual productions will take place over six quarters, beginning in spring and reaching an initial cut by the end of the following summer. The first project will be entering development in spring 2021 and production in June 2022.

The university has committed an annual budget to the Feature Film Program, and students may seek out additional funding to increase their film budget. Each project will be crewed primarily by JPCatholic faculty, students and alumni, with production taking place in the San Diego area.

Over the coming months, students and alumni are invited to develop their story ideas, leading up to a pitching event on-campus this May. A single project will be greenlit by next January.

For more information, visit

Two Local Pastors to Retire
SAN DIEGO – The Office of the Bishop has announced that the pastors of two parishes in the Diocese of San Diego will be retiring on June 30.

Father Jerry O’Donnell, who has served in the diocese since his ordination in 1972, will retire after 15 years as pastor of All Hallows Parish in La Jolla.

Father Peter Bosque, who began his service in the diocese on July 1, 2014, will retire as pastor of St. Therese Parish in Del Cerro.

Bishop to Lead Online Holy Saturday Retreat
SAN DIEGO – Auxiliary Bishop John Dolan will lead an hour-long retreat on Holy Saturday via Zoom.

The theme will be “A Walk in the Garden” and will include reflection on the Garden of Eden, the Garden of Gethsemane, the Garden of the Empty Tomb, and the Garden of Eternal Life, using the paintings of early Renaissance artist Blessed Fra Angelico.

The retreat will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Saturday, April 3.

Register at

Hope Available for Troubled Marriages
SAN DIEGO – Retrouvaille SoCal/San Diego will host a virtual version of its weekend program to help struggling couples to restore their marriages on April 8-11.

An offshoot of Marriage Encounter, Retrouvaille was founded in Canada in 1977 to heal marriages so damaged that they needed more than basic marriage-enrichment. Since then, it has spread internationally.

Retrouvaille is a three-part program that begins with a weekend experience led by a presenting team of three married couples, all of whom are Retrouvaille alumni, and a Catholic priest. After the weekend, participants attend a series of six follow-up sessions and then join an ongoing alumni community.

During the weekend, presenters share their personal stories and equip the struggling couples with tools to communicate better with one another.

The registration fee for the Retrouvaille weekend is $175 per couple.

For more information, visit, call (951) 259-9474, or email

Catholics Invited to ‘Encounter’ Jesus
SAN DIEGO – “Encounter,” a Spirit-filled evening of inspiring music, powerful prayer and Eucharistic adoration, is held monthly at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish in Rancho Peñasquitos.

The next installments will be held from 7 to 8 p.m., Thursdays, April 8 and May 13.
Those interested may attend in-person or watch it live on the parish’s YouTube channel.

For more information, visit

Marriage Encounter Hosting Virtual Weekends
SAN DIEGO – Catholic couples who would like to transform their good marriages into great ones are in luck.

Worldwide Marriage Encounter, the world’s largest faith-based marriage-enrichment organization, is offering two virtual weekend retreats – April 9-11 and June 25-27 – for San Diego couples.

For more information, visit or call (760) 659-9102.

Bilingual Mass Offered for Earth Day
SAN DIEGO – Bishop Robert McElroy will celebrate a bilingual Mass in honor of Earth Day.

The liturgy, which can be attended in-person or watched via livestream, will be celebrated at 2 p.m., Saturday, April 17, inside St. James Church in Solana Beach.

More information is available at

For more information, contact Father Emmet Farrell at or (619) 419-8345.

Teen Dating Workshop Rescheduled
SAN DIEGO – “Dating in Today’s Digital World: Pitfalls for Teens & Parents,” a free workshop originally scheduled for Feb. 24, has been postponed to April 21.

The workshop will address such topics as healthy relationships, digital dangers, teen dating violence, and how to access help and resources. It is sponsored by Ascension Parish’s Safe Place Faith Community Outreach Team, a domestic violence outreach.

The event will take place from 7 to 8:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 21, at Ascension Parish, 11292 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., San Diego 92124.

Free palm cards and pins will be available for all participants. The event will be held outside, weather permitting; masks and social distancing practices will be observed.
Attendance is limited to 200.

RSVP by April 12 to Angela Elfman at or (858) 775-4828.

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