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Message from Fr. Joe: Giving thanks at our parish table

Thanksgiving Day Mass 10:00 in person and live-stream on Facebook.

 

Blessings & Gratitude,

“The Lord watch between you and me, while we are apart one from another”

Genesis 31:49

This above scripture passage was first introduced on our website back in March, the very beginning of Covid, when advisories first told us to keep our distance. Since then, it has been a mantra of daily prayer here in our church and rectory chapel.

I first encountered the “Mizpah”, as it is referred to, upon the death of my maternal grandmother, Nana Glavin. She, who died at the age of 90, had immigrated at the age of 19. When leaving her home and family her widowed father gave her the gift of a silver pin with Genesis 31:49 engraved into it. Nana Glavin, born 1900, was an amazing living example to me the first third of my life. Her impact has remained with me since and through the other two thirds.

You have been an amazing living example to me throughout this fragile and challenging year of tremendous complexities. Our concept of time and day to day living throughout this crisis and pandemic has totally shifted. Regardless of age or life experiences you each have witnessed to the great human ability of Willingness, Honesty and Open mindedness. The WHO of it all! Indeed, you have shown a level of trust, acceptance and perseverance beyond compare in my lifetime. You have turned to the WHO, GOD who is sometimes beyond our understanding. 

Because of your faith and trust, perseverance and support our parish has weathered this pandemic with strength and dignity. Have we done everything perfectly? No way. If anything I’ve done or not done has caused you or our parish to waver in faith, I am truly sorry. We must remain spiritually fit in order to continue in a healthy capacity physically and emotionally. It is through the efforts of many others that our parish adjusted quickly to provide spiritual and pastoral care. Albeit limited, we have made great progress.

Immediately we went to live-streaming mass and electronic communication. We also reverted to the good old phone call! We would like to strengthen communication and increase our contact with. Your advice and suggestions are most welcome.

Outreach abounds through Neighbors in Need Neighbors Indeed and collaboration with the city of Boston and interagency inter parish networking. Together with St. Leonard’s of the North End we have partnered to provide upwards of 500 meals. Our major concern is for anyone living alone and for all who are struggling. How to better match those who can assist with those who need assistance is a priority.

Sunday begins Advent and we revisit the generous tradition of our Giving Tree. Mostly virtual ornaments can still be taken, and gifts provided. The tree itself will be at the rectory entry for a more accessible in person ornament taking or gift return. Gift cards are graciously accepted through the rectory mail slot. Our security cameras assist with safety concerns. 

Advent Lessons and Carols will be virtual on our website beginning Sunday evening. A consecration to our national patroness of the Immaculate Conception is a prayerful component of this seasonal prayer. 

While we encourage folks to remain safe and at home Sunday mass at 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. continue. Sunday mass can be viewed live on our Facebook at 9:00 a.m. Previous masses can be seen on Facebook and the current week stays on our website for a week.  

Our parish anniversary date of November 9 was marked this challenging 158th year by the beginning of an ongoing financial assistance request. The Day of Giving has now received just over $38,000 from a few dozen donors. We are most grateful to this generosity and appreciate all who have and will be contributing these weeks. Realizing everyone’s present financial stresses any contribution is greatly appreciated. A $13,252 matching contribution was made challenging folks to an annual goal of $158,000. One thousand for every year of our history. Thank you one and all for whatever you might find to be a possible contribution. 

This Thanksgiving 2020, in the midst of virus and fragility and challenges we have blessings to be grateful for and concerns for the needy to present. Please join us at our parish family altar table at 10:00 a.m. live in our church or livestream through Facebook or access any time after noon on our website.

While most tables are very different this year, our parish family altar table is constant with our faith, cares and concerns. We pray for all who are able to celebrate Thanksgiving and with all for whom this Thanksgiving is sad or difficult.

Appreciation & Prayers,

Fr. Joe

 

 

 

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