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3rd Sunday of Easter –  April 30, 2017

“Jesus himself drew near and walked with them, but their eyes were prevented from recognizing Him.” The disciples on the road to Emmaus had already heard reports about Jesus’ resurrection. It was at the forefront of their minds, but in spite of this, they did not recognize Jesus when He stood right before them. Why not? Perhaps because they weren’t looking for Him. Maybe they didn’t really believe that He was alive. Or it could be that His appearance was not the same as it had been before. Whatever the case, it’s very interesting to learn that it was actually while celebrating the Eucharist that these men finally realized who was right there with them! “He was made known to them in the breaking of bread.” Living as we do some two thousand years later, it is easy to imagine that recognizing Jesus was a snap for those who walked the earth when He did. We can run the risk of feeling sorry for ourselves that we don’t get to see Jesus in person they way they did. But look here! It was through the Eucharist that Christ was made known to them, and we too have that gift right in front of us. We celebrate every week the same “breaking of bread” at the altar during Mass. Jesus is present with us, body, blood, soul, and divinity, even if we don’t recognize Him! He is there, present in our midst. If our eyes of faith are feeble, we can pray that the Lord will help us to know His presence in the Eucharist. Just as He came to comfort and accompany His first disciples, He wants to do the same for us through the Most Blessed Sacrament. We only need to be sure that we are always on the lookout to find Him in our midst.
FROM THE RECTORY:
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, let me start by thanking all those who helped make our Lenten season and Easter celebration an active and grace-filled experience. We tried some new things this year and some were and some were not as successful as I had hoped. With that in mind, I am using this article not so much to pass along information or lessons but rather to ask all of you if you have any suggestions/ideas of events you would like to see our parish provide in regard to social events and fund raisers. We are already planning a tricky tray in October so watch for further details in the near future and mark your calendars. I am also looking to build up attendance at weekday mass, which is currently being celebrated at 8:30 a.m., and would be interested to know if you do not presently attend, would you attend if it was offered at another time in the morning and if so what time. I request that if you do have any thoughts to share that you write me a note and drop it in the collection basket at any Sunday mass. I do ask that you please provide your name on any note you write to me for I will not consider/take seriously notes that are unsigned plus if the idea is used I want to be able to give credit where credit is due.
Fr. Michael

 SCRIPTURAL REFLECTIONS ON STEWARDSHIP
How often do we take the time to discern what Jesus wants from us? Are our prayers always petitions, asking Jesus to do things for us? If so, that’s a one-sided relationship. Living our faith means developing a personal relationship with Jesus. Just like any friendship, there is give and take, each side listening to each other and helping each other out. Take time in silence to listen to what Jesus is asking of you.

The gift of Bread & Wine for the month of April has been given in memory of Lucia DiNardo & Giuseppe Manieri by Maria & Nicola Totaro.
The Sanctuary Lamp for the month of April has been given in memory of Maria Totaro by Maria & Nicola Totaro.
Easter and Holy Week at our parish this year was a tremendous celebration because of the efforts of so many people. The lectors, Eucharistic ministers and ministers of hospitality did a great job to make the liturgy much more meaningful. Ellen, Rosemarie, Holly, Mike and all those who helped did a fine job decorating and preparing our church for our Easter celebration. So a big THANK YOU from all of us at Immaculate Conception for what you do to make our celebrations so spiritually significant. service and support.
Thank you for your great support for the parish dear members and officers in different ministries.
God Bless You All!

This annual appeal is our way to participate in the ministries the Archdiocese provides to help many that need assistance, education and support. Our pledges to date are $1,995. If we exceed our goal, which is $8,800, our parish will receive a rebate that can be used to further our own parish mission. There are brochures and pledge cards in the pews. Your pledge can be paid off over the next year in monthly installments. We appreciate your generosity!

 ARCHDIOCESAN CELEBRATION  OF MARRIAGE
We are again preparing the annual tradition of honoring those couples who will be celebrating 5, 25 or 50 years of Christian marriage in 2017.  These liturgies will be celebrated by Cardinal Joseph Tobin in the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark as follows: April 30, 2017 at 3:00 pm –– 5 years and 25 years May 7, 2017 at 3:00 pm – 50 years You must pre-register for these Masses, please call the rectory at 201-440-2798.

 REMEMBER OUR MEMBERS IN YOUR PRAYERS
Please pray for: Frances Trause, Kelly Chinchar, Kellie & Kathy Salata, Jessica, Juliana, Helen, Anthony, Carol Mangino, Jessica Calabrese, Lori, Jacqueline Carty, Gloria, Michael, Daniel Breslin, Richard McShera, Susan Brooks, Stanley, Marie, Joseph Marrone, Bill Marshall, Blase Coppola, Justin Duffy, Nell Olsomer, Josephine Ulliana and Maricel Dino.
LIVE THE LITURGY INSPIRATION FOR THE WEEK
Does your celebration of the Eucharist ever transform you? Today we are presented with the story of what happened on the road to Emmaus. The disciples are simply journeying with Jesus, whom they do not recognize, talking about all that happened over the past days. They were quite bewildered as they did not know what to think about the empty tomb. Each year, we gather to celebrate the Resurrection and many of us wonder, what does it all mean? Jesus journeys with us every moment of our lives, yet we often do not recognize Him. When we gather each week, the word of God, the homily that is preached, and the Eucharist that is received all help us lift the veil that often hides the wonder, power, and presence of God. Will you be open today to being taught, led, and transformed by Christ? He is walking with us, eager to open our eyes so that we can see.