In this issue, Feb. 21-27

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Worcester Chancery

Sun Staff / Worcester Sun

The Chancery of the Diocese of Worcester

Worcester Diocese grapples with $1.2M deficit |  Feeling the weight of expanding retirement roles and dwindling patronage, the local Catholic church finds its coffers a bit light. “We have to look at a number of alternatives to help us with these (financial) problems. We have a (spiritual) job to do and we don’t plan to just go away.” So says diocesan chancellor Raymond L. Delisle. Bronislaus B. Kush reports on what’s behind the shortfall and how officials plan to address it.


Mike Ricardi, left, and friend Jim Gahan, right, pose with Jack Russell, former frontman for Great White, whose pyrotechnics caused the deadly Station nightclub fire.

Courtesy Mike Ricardi

Mike Ricardi, left, and friend Jim Gahan, right, pose with Jack Russell, former frontman for Great White, whose pyrotechnics caused the deadly Station nightclub fire.

The Station nightclub fire, and the final moments of a fateful friendship |  “Take a step back and appreciate life,” Mike Ricardi advises. “You never know when it’s going to change in an instant.” The Worcester resident knows this all too well, and has written a book about and the awful night fire broke out at The Station nightclub, and the friend he can never forget.


Sina-cism: A Supreme consideration, the Constitution |  “Less than a day after Justice Antonin Scalia’s death, some putative ideological allies seemed to abandon one of the central tenets of his judicial philosophy: Read the Constitution.” Chris Sinacola tells us how William Howard Taft, summers in Millbury — and a little common sense — might inform the GOP’s current position.

Justice Antonin Scalia's death has touched off an unfortunate "Constitutional" battle.

Wikimedia Commons

Justice Antonin Scalia’s death has touched off an unfortunate “Constitutional” battle.


Editorial: Show of pride |  Local singer and entertainer Dale LePage will soon be host of a web/television series focusing on the LGBTQ community. It’s a first; not just for Worcester but for miles around. New England Pride TV aims to bring information, entertainment and inspiration to a wide audience historically underserved, geographically and otherwise.


Feb21SunSpot_Panhandler_teaseSun Spots with Hitch [Vol. 34]: Can’t ’handle the truth |  The city put quite a lot into defending its divisive panhandling restrictions eventually deemed unconstitutional by the Supreme Court (there they are again!). Well, as it always does, the bill came due. And when municipal leaders checked their pockets, ironically enough, all they found was a hand to stick out, looking for a little help. Hitch, wouldn’t you know it, has some thoughts.


The Score with Ken Powers: Bill Gibbons Sr. holds court, back where he belongs |  It’s been a long road the past year or so for Bill Gibbons Sr., a decades-long fixture on the city’s sports scene and patriarch of a basketball coaching family. KP welcomes him back from his faith-testing ordeal with a nod to the man who did it best and inspired this column. We also check in on a former scholastic pitching phenom spinning gems of a different variety these days — get The Score!

Bill Gibbons Sr. is glad to be back involved with local scholastic basketball and tennis.

Jim Fay / Courtesy Bill Gibbons

Bill Gibbons Sr. is glad to be back involved with local scholastic basketball and tennis.


Up Next: To save money, Rosen proposes city do its schools’ work |  District 5 Councilor Gary Rosen will ask City Manager Edward M. Augustus Jr. to explore the feasibility of city administration absorbing several financial and administrative responsibilities of Worcester Public Schools, to help address a potential $5 million shortfall in next year’s school budget.


Sun Serial: A Mother’s Journey | Part 13 — The balancing act |  The Learning Hub, three weeks young, is in the crossfire of this skirmish between work and family. Each day brings a new bottomless list of tasks and priorities, creating a tug-of-war between entrepreneurial and non-business responsibilities. See how Giselle plans to win the daily battle.

Giselle stops for a few smiles with Brooklyn and Evian during their weekend getaway to Baltimore and D.C.


Worcester Weekly: Huey P. Newton, Kayla Harrison + 4 more things to do, Feb. 21-27 |  As Black History Month comes to a close, we highlight a trio of worthwhile events, each exploring distinct and impactful themes on race and community. An Olympic champion shares her harrowing, uplifting journey. Some high-stakes hoops at Hart Center, and more. Get in there!


New in Free to Read

A mural depicting an historic streetscape is still featured inside the White Eagle.

Courtesy White Eagle Association

A mural depicting an historic streetscape is still featured inside the White Eagle.

Local Business Spotlight: Historic White Eagle looks toward future
The longtime Canal District gathering spot has made significant recent changes in order to attract new customers. With a fresh perspective, not to mention board of directors, and a focus on eliminating the perception that it remains a bastion for troublemakers, the new leadership of a Green Street landmark appears ready to take flight.

For Chase Joinville, opening Grafton Hill Barbershop was not only a chance at redemption for the storefront at 120 Hamilton St., but for the new owner as well.

Patrick Sargent / For Worcester Sun

For Chase Joinville, opening Grafton Hill Barbershop was not only a chance at redemption for the storefront at 120 Hamilton St., but for the new owner as well.

Local Business Spotlight: Grafton Hill Barbershop
“There’s more to life than getting into trouble. Life is a precious thing. I want to be a positive role model for my kids and give back to the community that I grew up in. Basically, make things right and pay it forward.” Find out more about Chase Joinville, his long road to entrepreneurship and his new Hamilton Street shop.

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