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Fr. Ron's Blog

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Fr. Ron's Blog

Dear Friends,
As you read my column this weekend, I will be on the slopes in Vermont and, hopefully, it won’t be as cold as it was last weekend. Mass attendance took a triple hit last weekend: (1) it was President’s weekend, and with schools closed for three days, many families were away, (2) Sunday was Valentine’s Day, and many went out somewhere on Sunday and (3) finally, it was cold, too cold to go out. I can tell you that it was cold, we lost heat in the rectory overnight Sunday into Monday and it was very cold.

Dear Friends,
In last Sunday’s Gospel, we heard Luke’s account of the call of the first disciples, by name, Peter, James and John. Peter’s two responses to Jesus are worth noting. In kindly terms, those responses could be labeled “excuses.” The first excuse is the reason not to put out to sea again, because they had been hard at work all night and caught nothing. The second excuse is the reason not to accept Jesus’ invitation, because, Peter says, he is a sinful man. In Jesus’ eyes, neither excuse holds water (pardon the pun).

Dear friends,
Because many were unable to attend Mass last weekend, I repeat the first part of my column about “We Are Living Stones.”
“Dear brothers and sisters, the Church loves you! Be an active presence in the community, as living cells, as living stones.” These words of Pope Francis recall the words of St. Pope John Paul II on his visit to the Archdiocese of Newark in 1995. As he presided at Evening Prayer at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Newark, he referenced its beauty, but it was a beauty that was outshined by the beauty of the people of the Archdiocese, the “living stones” which truly make up the living Church.

Dear friends,
“Dear brothers and sisters, the Church loves you! Be an active presence in the community, as living cells, as living stones.” These words of Pope Francis recall the words of St. Pope John Paul II on his visit to the Archdiocese of Newark in 1995. As he presided at Evening Prayer at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Newark, he referenced its beauty, but it was a beauty that was outshined by the beauty of the people of the Archdiocese, the “living stones” which truly make up the living Church.

Dear friends,
For this week, I’d like to get away from things of concrete and asphalt, and turn to things of soul and spirit. In this first part of my column, I write to the men of the parish, especially men struggling to balance work and family.

You all know what a time out is in sports and the reason for one. (The Ranger goalie was looking for one recently and didn’t get it). There’s the injury time out, when a player is injured in some way and needs either to get his wind back, or medical attention. There’s the time out that’s called because the team is in disarray, unsure of the play or the strategy, or because the noise in the stadium is so great (usually against the visiting team) that the quarterback can’t be heard.

Dear friends,
Since the bulletin is prepared on Wednesday, before the Village Council meeting, I cannot share with you what happened. Below, please find the statement of the Parish that was emailed to Council members and read into the record.

Dear friends,
The flip of a calendar doesn’t necessarily mark anything special, but it does afford the opportunity to stop and “take stock” of what’s going on. That change of calendars happened last Friday, and so it is a good time to take that stock.

Firstly, to recognize blessings and say thanks. The first reading of the Mass for the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, New Year’s Day, begins “Say to them (the Israelites): ‘The Lord bless you and keep you.” We here at OLMC are so blessed in so many ways. One of those blessings is the people who are so good to us, sharing their time and talents.

Dear friends,
Today is Holy Family Sunday, the day on which the Church celebrates family life and asks us to reflect on the family as the basic unit of society. It is the family in which we are nurtured and nourished and which, throughout our lives, offers the support that allows us to continue to grow and, at the same time, to be secure in the knowledge that there is a place where we are loved. It is in the family that we experience the ties that bind, bringing us together into the most intimate of all human relationships.

Dear friends,
I conclude this week a summary of Pope Francis’ bull of indiction, The Face of Mercy, announcing the Jubilee of Mercy which began a week ago on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception.

After reminding us that God never tires of reaching out to us, always ready to listen, the Holy Father takes up the question of justice and mercy. Justice and mercy are not contradictory realities because, in Sacred Scripture, justice is understood essentially as faithful abandonment to God’s will. Faced with a vision of justice as the mere observance of the law that puts people into two groups – the just and the sinner- (as the Pharisees do), Jesus reveals the great gift of mercy that searches out sinners and offers them new life.

Dear friends,
We continue our reflection on The Face of Mercy, convoking the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy by Pope Francis.
The Pope invites us to see this year as a pilgrimage representing the journey each of us makes through life. The desired destination of this year’s pilgrimage is the Holy Door in Rome, or the local cathedral (in our case the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark), or a church designated by the local Bishop (again, in our case, Presentation in Upper Saddle River). To pass through the Holy Door in any one of these places is a sign of the strength to embrace God’s mercy and dedicate ourselves to being merciful with others as the Father has been with us.

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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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