25th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Sept.19, 2021

Due to the ongoing Covid situation, we have decided that Grades 1, 3, 4, 5 & 6 will continue with the At-Home program we used last year. It worked very well and almost every child completed the entire book and submitted the unit quizzes. We thank you, the parents, for your help in accomplishing this However the Sacramental classes will meet in person in our church basement. Grade 2 – First Communion/First Reconciliation will be on Mondays from 3:30 to 4:30. Grades 7 & 8 – the Confirmation class will be on Sundays from 10:45 to 12 Noon. We have enough room to social distance and are asking everyone to wear masks. We have made this decision as these are two very important sacraments that really need in person instruction. We have sent home registration information to all families that were in our program last year. There are also registration forms in the back of church. If you are new, have a child entering 1st Grade in September or have any questions, please call the rectory.

Confession with Father Michael is available through appointment only. Please contact the Rectory at (201) 440-2798

There is something about being first. Whether it be first in line, first to be picked for the team, or the first one to finish their work, great satisfaction is achieved. Our egos love being first. It somehow sets us apart from everyone else, gives us a sense of pride and positions us to feel better than others. When we are first, we can glory in our efforts, skills, and achievements. Isn’t that what really matters? After all, we are taught from a very young age to be proficient, stay on top, be the best at what we do, and win the praise and esteem of others. This is the stuff that makes us successful and provides us with a comfortable, satisfying life. Jesus wants none of it. All of the details we anguish over mean little to the kingdom of God. You want to be first? Then, be a servant and welcome a child. All of this is the opposite of our often vehement pursuits. If we are serious about following Jesus and living the Gospel, then we must put the needs of others before our own. If we continue to listen only to the noise of the world, we are going to continue to believe the illusions we inherit. Those illusions come in many forms, but all have things in common: me before you, being on top and not the bottom, us versus them, personal security over universal harmony and peace. When are we going to learn that always striving to be the best and first is an empty pursuit in our struggle for happiness? While satisfying our ego with this momentary boost of esteem may feel good for a moment, is it what we really desire? If we can break from the world’s noise and create a space of sacred silence in our lives, we can begin to listen and see that we are being called in another direction. What we really desire is not the bolstering of our egos but the innocence we lost somewhere along the way. When we can be playful, joyful, and even somewhat carefree, life is good. We want our relationships to work, a place to call home, and to live peaceful lives with our sisters and brothers. Only a servant can do this. The servant’s prayer seeks to detach from self-concern in order to be used by God. Rather than worrying about being first and coming out on top, we can be inspired, guided, empowered, and led to do good works. Stop worrying about being first and put greater energy into feeling joy.

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
With the turmoil that is taking place in our nation these days and with the 20th anniversary of 9/11 having just past, I have been asked about adding a prayer during mass for our nation. Liturgically I am not allowed to add anything to the mass, that falls to the authority of the Vatican only. However, I am sharing the prayer below for our nation and encourage everyone to say it daily:
 Prayer for our Nation
God our Father, giver of life, we entrust the United States of America to your loving care. You are the rock on which this nation was founded. You alone are the true source of our cherished rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Reclaim this land for your glory and dwell among your people. Send your Spirit to touch the hearts of our nation’s leaders. Open their minds to the great worth of human life and the responsibilities that accompany human freedom. Remind your people that true happiness is rooted in seeking and doing your will. Through the intercession of Mary Immaculate, patroness of our land, grant us the courage to reject the “culture of death.” Lead us into a new millennium of life. We ask this through Christ Our Lord. Amen.
God Bless you and have a wonderful week, Fr. Michael

“If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all and the servant of all.”
Jesus teaches us that we are called to love one another. Love involves sacrifice. Sacrifice is a word that many of us don’t like to hear. We think it means that we must give up something that we want. However, the literal meaning of sacrifice is “to make holy,” from the words “sacer” = sacred and “facere” = to make. In other words, we make our lives holy by sharing our gifts in the service of God.

We have quite a few weekday 8:30 am masses and some 8 am Sunday masses available for the rest of 2021 if anyone would like to have masses said for loved ones. The 2022 mass book will not be opened until all the masses for 2021 are filled.

We are looking for people to volunteer to be Lectors for Sunday masses. We are very, very short staffed in this important ministry. If you would be willing to read at Sunday mass, please see Fr. Michael or call the rectory.

That God will relieve their suffering and restore them to health. Please pray for:
Kellie Salata, Kelly Chinchar, Jessica, Carol Mangino, Gloria, Daniel Breslin, Stanley, Helen Traina, Joseph Marrone, Bill Marshall, Anthony, Michael, Joseph, Jessica Esopo, Nancy McShera, Theresa McPeak, Walter Eckel, William, Steve, Audra, Philip, Doria, Frank Bennick, Bernadette, Francis Reilly, James Weiss, Chrissy Martin, Anne Trainor, Don Trainor, Rosemary Malangone, Elizabeth Malangone, Billy, Baby Ford, Carly West, Marie Goodman, Patrice Duffy, Fred Whiting.

The gift of Bread & Wine for the first two weeks of September has been given in memory of Louise & John Hansen by Mr. & Mrs. Raymond DeRiso.
The Sanctuary Lamp for the month of September has been given in memory of Cecelia Jashembowski by Linda J. Sylvestri.
Special thanks to Mr. & Mrs. Sunga for beautiful orchids and other members who decorate and maintain our altars.

Altar gifts are a beautiful way to honor your loved ones while also helping our parish. There are some two week blocks still available in 2021. Please contact the rectory if you are interested.

“Let the Church always be a place of mercy and hope, where everyone is welcomed, loved, and forgiven.” (Pope Francis)

The Church can also be a place to heal. We are called to “be merciful like the Father.” So many are suffering from the effects of abortion. Where can they heal? Where can they feel safe and loved? The Archdiocese of Newark Respect Life Office will be hosting two upcoming Rachel’s Vineyard retreats to heal the wounds from abortion. Retreat dates are September 10-12, 2021 (English) and October 22-24, 2021 (Spanish). Contact the Respect Life Office for more details by calling 973-497-4350 (Spanish option 2) or e-mail Cheryl.riley@rcan.org (English) elvinedoderaquelinfo@rcan.org (Spanish)
“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”
(Psalm 147:3)

St. Peter’s Prep will be holding its Fall Open House on Sunday, October 17th from 1-4 pm at the school’s campus in historic downtown Jersey City. For more information, please call 201-547-6389 or visit www.spprep.org.

Recycle Old Ink and Toner Cartridges
There is a receptacle on the table in the back of church for the small cartridges. Large ones can be left under the table. If you have a bunch, please call the rectory and we can arrange to meet you at the garage doors and we can put them in the garage instead of you lugging them into the church.

Prayer for A Pandemic

It is the best way to ensure our parish receives the support needed for our operating expenses and ministries by eGiving through Parish Giving! We are excited to introduce “Enhanced Stewardship through Electronic Funds Transfer” for your weekly offertory. No more envelopes or last-minute check writing! Electronic giving is safe and easy for you and good stewardship for the parish. Please enroll today by visiting www.icchackensack.com. and click on the logo that is on top of the website. Increased enrollment with Parish Giving will help stabilize our parish finances. There are brochures in the pews or visit Parish Giving at www.parishgiving.org

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