CHRISTMAS SCHEDULE OF MASSES
Christmas Day, Friday, December 25: 8 am, 10 am, 12 noon.
The 10 am mass will be live-streamed.
From the Pastor
Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of Mercy,
I hope and pray that you are all well and safe.
I imagine that all your preparations for Christmas are almost finished. Five days more to go and it’s Christmas!
Our gospel reading clearly proclaims the nearness of Christmas when we hear of Mama Mary. The angel appeared to her and said, “Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus.” (Luke 1:31) Mary said “yes” to the message of the angel. “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” (Luke 1:38) Because of her “yes” we have a savior! We thank Mama Mary for that great “yes!”
A lesson we can take away with us from that passage is simple and powerful – if we say “yes” to God, then good things happen in our life. The big question is, do we do that? Do we say “yes” to what God is asking of us?
On another note, please pay attention to our schedule for Christmas Eve. We have scheduled an additional Mass at 7 pm. That means we are going to have three Masses on Thursday, Christmas Eve, namely, 5 pm, 7 pm, and 10 pm. On Friday, Christmas Day we are going to have Masses at 8 am, 10 am, and 12 noon. As always, once we reach the permitted seating capacity in the church, we will have a second Mass in the Maria Room for the overflow.
Also, starting Saturday, January 23, we are going to drop the Saturday morning Mass from our schedule of Masses. From that day forward, there will no longer be an 8:30 am Mass on Saturday. There will be only one Mass on Saturdays, namely, at 5 pm. Since we are down to two priests now, that will a big help to Father Tom and me.
Last but not the least, please consider giving a generous gift to your parish in the Christmas collection. Also please do not forget to make a donation to help cover the cost for the flowers and decorations that will enhance the beauty of our church during the Christmas Season.
I thank you for your understanding, generosity, and support.
God bless you.
Video Dealing with Depression
The Wellness Committee of our parish has a new video on our website (olmnj.org) dealing with depression. The ongoing pandemic has affected our lives in different ways. One effect of the pandemic is depression, which manifests itself in different ways. It affects us physically, mentally, and spiritually. This video features a discussion by health care professionals, including a psychiatrist, a psychologist, a nurse, and a priest speaking about the topic of depression. We encourage you to view this video. We are sure you will find it helpful. Watch it here.
Our Mass Book is Now Open
Our 2021 Mass Book opens today, Sunday, November 29, for your Mass Intentions. Please note that no more than five Mass intentions may be scheduled at any one time. Besides Mass intentions, you will also be able to make donations for the sanctuary lamp and for the bread and wine used at our Masses.
OLM Giving Tree
The Giving Tree is a wonderful custom that involves people giving to those in need during the Christmas season. Many families cannot afford rent or food, and certainly not Christmas gifts. The beautiful tradition about the Giving Tree is that the giver does not know the receiver, and the recipient does not know the giver, but both are touched by the love of Christ.
The Giving Tree continues this Christmas season despite the current pandemic. Stars are on the trees and on display in the entrance area of the church, however, in the interest of everyone’s health and safety, rather than purchasing actual items, we are requesting only cash, gift cards, or checks.
Your donations will be given to the charities that we normally support: Saint Ann’s Day Care Center, Catholic Charities, Several Sources Shelters (serving unwed mothers), Broadway House (HIV/AIDS) and Covenant House (Newark). These charities will then purchase gifts for those in need this Christmas.
Please return your donations by Friday, December 18 and place them under the Giving Tree or bring them to the parish office.
The 2021 Bible Diary is Now Available!
The new edition of the Bible Diary is now available for $10 at the Parish Office after Mass or during office hours. The 2021 Bible Diary contains the assigned scripture reading for each day of the year, a reflection on the reading, and also information about the saint of day. The Bible Diary is a great help for personal daily prayer. These books also make an appreciated Christmas Gift.
Update on Shining The Light of Christ
“Shining the Light of Christ” is the theme of 2020 Annual Appeal that supports the mission, programs and ministries of the Archdiocese. This year’s goal for Our Lady of Mercy Parish is $42,809. There is a 100% rebate of every dollar collected above our goal. Currently, the total pledge amount is $50,600 and $47,316 has been collected. Please support this appeal.
New Update On We Are Living Stones
Our total pledged amount is now $501,472. We are at 100.65% of our goal of that $432,293 has been collected and $194,137 disbursed to the parish. We remind those who have not fully paid their pledge to continue sending your payment to the We Are Living Stones Office. (171 Clifton Avenue, Newark, NJ 07104-0500) God bless your generosity!