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Dear Friends,
Last weekend was about the busiest a parish can possibly be. Beginning Friday evening, and then twice on Saturday, Bishop Cruz confirmed 199 of our young people. I’ve already written about that but I want to take the time to thank all those involved in the preparation and celebrations themselves, the catechetical leaders (those who led the small groups), the service project leaders, the teenagers who were on the teams that ran the retreat weekends and the musicians who added so much to the confirmation liturgies. And all under the direction of our Director of Youth Ministry, Glen McCall. Thanks to all of you. But special thanks go to all those families, parents who still think it important enough to lead their children to a continued formation in their faith.

I am not so naïve as to believe that this moment will lead to a wholesale “conversion” to a more active and committed living of the faith. We sometimes decry the weakening of faith and participation in Catholic life today. That may be true, but just the fact that these teenagers have continued in their faith formation gives God the chance to touch their lives and deepen their experience of His presence and we should never sell that short. We are all about walking that journey of faith, some faster than others, some straighter than others. Wherever we are on that road, wherever these teens and their families are on that road – IT IS THE SAME ROAD.

On Sunday, we celebrated the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of the Lord, with the Eucharistic procession outside the church, after the 12:30 Mass. Thank you to all who organized it and participated in it, the members of Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration, the choir, the 1st Communion children, the K of C who carried the canopy and, of course the priests. We are a Eucharistic community, fed with the Body and Blood of the Lord to be what He has called us to be, a witness to God’s love and presence in the world. Besides our personal prayer life, we need the power of the Eucharist to live in a world that often times is less than what God had intended it to be. We need to be a community that sheds a different light on how God sees the “work of His hands,” and to do that we need the Eucharist as our source of strength.

If you didn’t see me in the procession, it was because I was celebrating baptism for seven young lives brought by their parents to be part of the community of faith we call the Church. It’s always a great joy for me to see the wonder on the faces of parents when they bring their infant children to the “font of life.” They are filled with such high expectations for these new lives. Pray for them, that they (the parents) may never lose sight of God’s love for them and His desire to share that love with this “holy family” He has created. Pray that they will always seek ways to increase their awareness of God's ’presences in their everyday lives.

The fourth special moment this past weekend was the return of Fr. Gino into our parish family. I wrote him afterward that it was nice to have him back (he stayed in the rectory for three nights), even if only for a short time. But more important was his message – the Church, in the world, in the United States, and, particularly, in our Archdiocese of Newark is in need of priests. Though I think I’m in pretty good health, I will be 73 in four months and who knows what the Lord has in store for me. Pray that the Lord of the harvest send laborers into the harvest. If you are, or someone you know is, thinking about priesthood, speak to one of the priests and we would be happy to follow up with you, or that person.

Four sacraments were either celebrated or talked about last weekend. Spiritually – not a bad weekend.

Now, on to more mundane things. We’re almost six months into the Annual Appeal, Sharing God’s Blessings. We’re still behind in the number of donors who gave last year. If you did, and have not done so yet this year, please do so now. If you haven’t given before, please consider a gift to carry on the important work of the Church of Newark. Pledge envelopes, as well as informational brochures are in all the bookracks in all three lobbies.

Finally, besides the Sharing God’s Blessings annual appeal, you know we have our own Sharing Our Gifts here in the parish. This is not a separate collection. This is the 10% tithe on the ordinary income we receive in the collection each week – a sign of the parish’s gratitude for God’s generous blessings in our lives. Each week the tithe goes to worthy causes and charities that carry on the work of the Gospel. But we count on you to make recommendations and suggestions for those charities. Forms for you to suggest such charities or works are also available in the bookracks. There are only two ground rules, no national charities (like the American Cancer Foundation or the Red Cross) and no individuals. And if you’re willing to serve on the Sharing Our Gifts Committee that evaluates these suggestions, please let me know.

Thanks.
God bless,
Fr. Ron

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Mass Schedule

Weekend Liturgies
Saturday, 5:30 p.m.
Sunday
8:00 a.m., 9:30 a.m.,
11:00 a.m., 12:30 p.m.,
3 p.m. (Spanish), 6:30 p.m.
Weekday Liturgies
Monday thru Friday,
6:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m.,
and 12 noon
Saturday, 8:30 a.m. only
Holy Days
Eve: 7:30pm (anticipated)
6:30am, 8:30am, and 12noon 

 

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Click Here for the Video in English and Spanish

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