From the Pastor
Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of Mercy,
Happy New Year!
I cannot believe that we are in 2021. The past year seemed to go by so quickly. I think that was especially the case because of the pandemic. The year 2020 seemed very short. Whatever happened, that year is over. We are here today facing what lies ahead of us.
This weekend, we are celebrating the feast of the Epiphany of Our Lord Jesus Christ. This is also known as “Three King’s Day” because of the visit of the kings or magi to pay homage to Jesus who was born in Bethlehem.
Our gospel passage talks about the revelation of Jesus’ coming, which was marked by the appearance of a star. That star led the magi to the birthplace of Jesus. This shows us that God draws all people of every race and nation to himself through Jesus Christ. God loves the whole world, the whole human race.
Brothers and sisters, we are like the magi in today’s gospel reading. We have been drawn to the Church by the light and the radiant warmth of God’s own Son. We may well ask ourselves: what gifts do we bring to the Christ Child today? Do we bring him our most precious possessions? Do we bring him our most cherished gifts?
Guess what? The best gift that we can offer him is our love!
As we begin this new year, let us move on with renewed hearts and with a renewed desire to live out our Christian vocation to holiness.
Also, in the name of our community, I thank you for your generous Christmas gifts to the parish. Please continue to support your parish with your prayers and financial aid.
Check out our bulletin for other information.
God bless you all.
Baptisms at OLM, Sunday, December 30, 2020
Lara Juliana Estacio Lim and Jhanessa Ann Lopez were baptized by Father Marty, our pastor, Sunday afternoon, December 20. Deacon Meynard assisted at the ceremony.
Left Photo: Lim Family: Gabriel (brother), Laurene (mother), Lara Juliana, John (father), and Richard (brother).
Right Photo: Lopez Family: Jhorayne (sister), Jonel (father), Jhaika (sister), Raychiel (mother), and Jhanessa Ann.
A Great Resolution for 2021
Still searching for a New Year’s resolution? None is more worthy than becoming Christ-like. In fact, 19th century evangelist Henry Drummond calls it “the only thing in the whole world worth caring for.” A modern-day author offers more insights. Stormie Omartian points out that we’re either making progress or backsliding on this goal. “There is no neutral position in the Lord,” she writes. “You are either becoming more like Christ every day or you’re becoming less like him.” And followers of Jesus must keep the goal always in focus.
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!