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Fr. Ron's Blog

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Fr. Ron's Blog

Dear Friends,
Welcome back. Welcome home. Happy New Year. All sentiments that have to do with beginning and return, returning home from vacations, returning back to school, beginning a new school year and a new program year. All conjured up by the idea that September marks a change. For some, it’s the first time a child has gone off to college. For others, the first time a child will go off to school for a full day, every day. Whatever the case may be – let’s all step into this new present with a renewed sense of hope for all that can be and a new vision and dream that we can make it all come true.

REPRINTED FROM LAST WEEK FOR THOSE WHO MAY HAVE MISSED IT.
THE HUDSON STREET PARKING LOT IS NOW CLOSED!
Dear Friends,
If you’ve driven down Hudson Street in the past few weeks you may have noticed the signs: “Effective Monday, August 19th, the Hudson Street Lot Will Be Closed.” Or you may not. But if you’ve driven down Hudson Street since last Monday, you cannot have missed the flashing sign announcing the same thing, but even more specifically, as of 12:00 midnight, August 19th, all cars will be towed. Thus continues the odyssey of the building of the parking garage, deck or whatever it’s to be called that began tumultuously almost four years ago. As I said several times during those early years, the parish recognizes the need for additional parking and the Hudson Street lot, already a Village property would probably be the most likely site. And now the time has come.

Dear Friends,
I know I said last week that that would be my final column for the summer. But I just wanted to keep you aware of some things happening in the parish.

The first is a reminder that Tuesday is the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Patroness of our parish. Mt. Carmel is a coastal mountain range in northern Israel stretching from the Mediterranean Sea towards the southeast for almost 24 miles. (No– it’s not in Italy). In Old Testament times, it was the place where the prophet Elijah would sometimes reside and it was the place where he challenged the 450 prophets of the pagan god, Baal, and the 400 prophets of Asherah, to a contest to see who was really more powerful, and, thus, which God should be worshipped and obeyed, the God of Israel or the pagan god, Baal. Guess who won? (For the full story, see 1 Kings 18.)

Dear Friends,
When I first came to Ridgewood, twenty-two years ago, someone told me that summer doesn’t officially begin in the Village until after the 4thof July parade and fireworks. Well, I guess summer is now here and I’m sure we’ll see it in the average weekend.

Dear Friends,
Happy Father’s Day to all our dads.

I may fail to be as clever as my neighbor down the street,
I may fail to be as wealthy as some other men I meet,
I may never win the glory which a lot of men have had,
But I’ve got to be successful as a little fellow’s dad.
There are certain dreams I cherish which I’d like to see come true,
There are things I would accomplish when my time of life is through,

Dear Friends,
Varia, again – more different subject, mostly unrelated.

- The Cooperative Mission Appeal. Each year, every parish in the United States is asked to host a missionary, sometimes a priest, sometimes a religious (nuns, brothers or priests), sometimes a lay person, who talks about the particular missionary work of their diocese, religious order, or lay institute. A parish doesn’t get to pick which mission group makes the presentation. That’s decided by the local diocesan Mission Office. This year Mount Carmel was assigned a specific place, Hospital Sacre’ Coeur, Milot, Haiti.

Dear Friends,
I want to say a big word of thanks to all those who were involved in the inaugural 1923 Society Gala for the benefit of our school, the Academy of Our Lady. While “officially” honoring myself and Mrs. Patricia Keenaghan, the Gala really honored the Academy of Our Lady, the successor school to two great parochial schools, Our Lady of Mount Carmel School, founded in 1923 (hence the name of the Gala) and St. Catharine’s School, founded in 1954. I want to thank the committee for their tireless efforts in making this first Gala such a great success. And I want to thank everyone who supported it, the sponsors and all those who attended. It really was a great evening.

Dear Friends,
Varia – A number of different subjects, sometimes unrelated

- As I write for this weekend, I have finished signing 164 1stCommunion certificates. This weekend concludes the five celebrations of one of the happiest moments in the life of a parish, the reception of the Eucharist for the first time by our second graders, all of whose names can be found on the front cover of this week’s bulletin. After eight months of preparation, they have come to the altar to receive Jesus’ greatest gift to His Church, HIMSELF, IN HIS REAL PRESENCE, for the life of the believer. Next weekend, Friday night and twice on Saturday, the parish will celebrate the conferral of the Holy Spirit by Bishop Manuel Cruz on 181 of our 9thgraders, and their names will appear on the front cover of next weekend’s bulletin. In just four weekends, 345 of our young people will be sharers in what stands at the heart of our Catholic experience – Jesus’ continued presence in us, the community of believers, the Church, through the Sacraments.

Dear Friends,
Because the bulletin for this Sunday, May 5th, had to go in only one day after the bulletin for last Sunday, April 28th, my brain has not been able to think that fast of something I want to say. I’m told that the reason is that the bulletin company is upgrading their printing capabilities.

Dear Friends,
Much like Easter Sunday, the 2nd Sunday of Easter, Divine Mercy Sunday, requires mentioning a few of the same things, year after year. First on the list is to say, “thank you.”

So, let me express my thanks to all those who helped make the Holy Week and Easter services so moving. A thank you to the people behind the scenes, Peggy and Patti in the office and, especially to Sal and Chris, from the maintenance staff, for weeks of hard work on the floors of the church, to make vanish the effects of the up and down winter we experienced this year. I want to especially say thanks to Fr. Robert and the liturgical ministers who planned and carried out some unique Masses/services which really happen only once a year.

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