The intentions of Pope Francis for the month of October:

  • Universal: That the Lord may grant peace to those parts of the world most battered by war and violence.
  • For Evangelization: That World Mission Day may rekindle in each believer zeal to carry the Gospel into all the world.

Dear Parishioners of OLM & OLS:

Thank you to all who participated in any way last Tuesday as we honored our patroness under the titles of Our Lady of Mercy and Our Lady of Sorrows. I was so pleased that this devotion was prayed with such zeal.

One of the additions to this year’s ceremony was the inclusion of our “Jubilee Hymn.” I hope some of you remember Father Ricky Manolo, CP. Father Ricky blessed us with his presence a few years ago by preaching our Parish Mission. He is also the composer of a number of hymns we use to praise God in our Sunday worship.

About a year ago, Doris Estallo-Ventura, our Director of Music Ministries at Our Lady of Mercy and I participated in the annual meeting of the National Pastoral Musicians Association.

Each year at the meeting a silent auction is held to assist the finances of the organization. Several composers place offers to compose a hymn for a parish. I asked Doris to look over the offerings to see if any might be useful for the celebration of our Jubilee. Both of us agreed that none met our needs.

As an alternative, we approached our colleague, Father Ricky Manolo. Despite the fact that he was concluding his doctoral dissertation and preparing to defend this doctoral thesis, he eagerly accepted the challenge of composing a Jubilee Hymn for us, honoring Mama Mary under her titles of Our Lady of Mercy and Our Lady of Sorrows.

In the midst of his doctoral stress, Father Ricky presented us with several offerings. Although Doris and I were satisfied with the beautiful music offered to us, Father Ricky was not. His persistence in the quest for a hymn giving honor to Mama Mary that was singable yet beautiful; simple yet theologically sound, gave us the wonderful Jubilee Hymn: Holy Mother, Blessed Mary.

We sang the hymn publically for the first time at the Catechists enrichment day at the start of our Faith Formation for this year. Again, we sang it as our Post Communion Hymn at our opening Jubilee Mass.

Copies of this Hymn will be place in the Breaking Bread Worship Aides when the new Breaking Breads arrive for the New Liturgical Year commencing on the Fist Sunday of Advent.

I am deeply grateful to Father Ricky for sharing his time, talent and treasure with us as we celebrate our Jubilee Year!

Lastly, we had to say goodbye to Father Joseph and Father Glenn. Both their vacations have come to a conclusion. Father Joseph returned to Nigeria and Father Glenn to Capiz. [We almost had Father Joseph for an unexpected return visit. As an “absent minded professor” -- PhD in Philosophy and all – he left his passport and plane ticket here at Our Lady Mercy and did not discover that until he tried to enter JFK]

I am glad that both of these priests – members of the Jersey Boys – were able to spend some time in relaxation with us while assisting our parishes at the same time.

My love and my prayers,

Father Jack

Throw Back Dancing Report:

1.  Tuesday, October 14 @ 7:30 p.m. –  We will have our “midterms”.  We will have three groups perform CHA CHA, MAMBO/SALSA, and HUSTLE.  Our next two sessions will be devoted to practicing with the dance leaders of our respective groups.  

2.  Tuesday, November 11 @ 7:30 p.m. –  We will have our “graduation” for the Fall term.  We will invite our families (and very close friends) to witness our transformation from “non-dancers” to light-footed and graceful dancers. We will have three more sessions between midterms and graduation,  and hopefully, we will learn at least two additional dances that we will perform on November 11.

3.  Tuesday, December 2 @ 7:30 p.m. – OUR CHRISTMAS PARTY!!!  We will invite dance groups from other parishes to join us, so we will sell tickets to them, as well as our families and friends.  As the host parish, we will rehearse several dances to present, to be choreographed by our dance masters, Ofie and Sev Baal.