Wellness Ministry Member shares his vaccine experience
From the Pastor
Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of Mercy,
I hope this finds you well and safe.
I always like to begin my letter with a short reflection on the readings proclaimed at Mass this weekend. As my starting point, I would like to consider our second reading from the first letter of Saint Paul to the Christians in Corinth. In a nutshell, the reading is about “love.” The married or unmarried man and woman are both anxious about everything, namely, the world, their very lives, and their spouses. But if you take a look at the whole passage, it is focused on love.
I would like to reflect on this with you because by virtue of our baptism we are called to love not only God but also to love one another. We have the responsibility to embody all the virtuous aspects of love in our relationships with one another and with the world.
Loving means that we have to choose to act in a way that may not always be in harmony with how we may feel at a given moment. It takes courage to love in this world. Jesus gives us a perfect example of that. In our gospel reading this weekend, Jesus had the courage to be faithful to his mission of teaching, preaching, healing, and saving us, and to deal with the rejection and refusal of his people to accept him.
Looking at our lives, we really need the help of Jesus and the grace of God to stand up and continue to proclaim Jesus’ mission of love in this world. If we come to the realization that loving is the only thing that will lead us to experience real joy and fulfillment, then we may understand our true purpose in this life.
Saying that, I encourage you to realize that whatever you do for yourself, your loved ones, your family and friends, the people around you, your community, your parish, etc., you should do it out of love.
For example, besides our obligation to attend Sunday Masses and Holy Days, we have upcoming events here in our parish that need our participation, such as the 2021 Annual Appeal, the coming Lenten observances that lead to the celebration of the Easter Season, sacramental preparations for First Communion and Confirmation. Your participation in these events should be motivated by your love of God and love for one another. Because if you do that, then everything will go smoothly and easily.
That is what we your priests, deacons and ministers are doing here at Our Lady of Mercy Parish. Our love of God and of his people is the force that pushes us to do what we do especially in these trying times in our world. We pray that you do the same. You also have to be convinced that God sees everything, be it done in secret or in public.
Let us continue to support one another in prayer and in whatever we can do to continue the mission of Christ.
I would like to thank all of you for your Christmas gifts to our parish. Please see the report on our Christmas Collection included in this bulletin.
I also would like to thank “Kuya” Alfred Gathalian for donating two TV monitors to help us participate in the celebration of the liturgy. I thank Jojo Paloma, our Maintenance Director, and “Kuya” Guiz Macalintal, and all those who helped to install the monitors.
God bless you all.
This Wednesday, February 3, is the Feast of Saint Blaise. It is traditional to bless throats on the feast of this saint who is noted for curing a child who was choking. This blessing is a sign of the struggle against illness in the life of a Christian. The blessing of throats will take place in our parish this Wednesday during the celebration of our 7 am and 8:30 am morning Masses. Because of current pandemic, the Archdiocese has directed that this blessing be given over the congregation in the form of a solemn blessing at the end of Mass. There will be NO individual blessing of throats nor will candles be used for the blessing as is usually done.
Baptisms at OLM, January 24, 2021
Julienne Lazaro Regalado with her parents: Terryliz & Julius Ryan (left photo) and Alonzo Ganados with his parents: Raymond & Christie Joy (right photo)
2020 Christmas Collection $40,885
Thank you so much for your generous response to our 2020 Christmas Collection. May the Lord bless you for remembering the needs of your parish during this past Christmas Season.
Latest on Shining the Light of Christ
“Shining the Light of Christ” was the name of the 2020 Annual Appeal that supports the programs and ministries of the Archdiocese. The 2020 goal for Our Lady of Mercy Parish was $42,809. The total amount that was pledged was $52,790. Of that amount, $51,961 has already been collected. There is a 100% rebate of every dollar collected above our goal.
Current Status of We Are Living Stones
Our total pledged amount in the Archdiocesan Capital Campaign, called WE ARE LIVING STONES is now $501,572. We are at 100.69% of our goal of $498,144, of that $434,968 has been collected and $194,259 disbursed to the our parish for various projects.
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!