January 29, 2023
Today we celebrate the Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time. As the crowds doubted who Jesus was because of his simple origins, so will others doubt who we are unless we courageously live the gospel. Most of us aren’t called to “professionally” preach the Good News. All of us, because of our baptism, are committed to living it.
Commitment to living the gospel takes on many different spiritual practices, including the Beatitudes. Our commitment comes from the short reminders about the characteristics that one will find in a follower of Christ, characteristics that will help spread the Good News in this life and lead to eternal blessings in the next. Jesus shows us the way to be in the world without being of it. The blessings come when we model our lives on the life of Jesus.
Moses went up a mountain and received the Law. Now Jesus teaches on a mountain. When Moses went up the mountain, no one was allowed to go with him; but Christ went up the mountain and invited everyone to join him. In three weeks, Christians will be invited to ascend the mountain of the Lord as we begin the Holy Season of Lent on Ash Wednesday.
These past two weeks I have been busy meeting a variety of deadlines, mostly in preparation for Holy Week. Before our lovely poinsettia plants disappeared, multiple deadlines ensued: the Pastor’s 2023 Cardinal’s Appeal Stewardship Letter, the 2022 Contribution Statement, ordering ashes, palms, and the Paschal candle, the submission of the Easter Schedule, including the Easter Greeting to the DP Murphy Co.
Yes, we are in Ordinary Time. During this Time, we read about extraordinary events occurring in our gospel readings and many events here at The Magdalene, including our newly formed Bible Study group, “Walking With Purpose”. What a blessing to have approximately 20 women joined.
January 22, 2023
The month of January brings the “post holiday blues,” the barrenness of the winter months, depression, the reality of paying off the credit cards and receiving correspondence from “Uncle Sam” on behalf of employers.
The month also brings many liturgical celebrations and national holidays. During the Octave of Christmas I wore many white vestments, sang the Gloria and many Christmas carols as the sanctuary remained beautifully decorated in celebration of Our Lord’s Birth.
For 50 years Pro-lifers held their Annual March For Life in Washington, DC. January 22nd, 2023 marks the 50th anniversary of Roe vs.Wade, the Supreme Court decision striking down state laws prohibiting abortion in our country. This is the first march after the historic overturning of Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 case that legalized abortion nationwide.
Let us continue to pray and support pregnant women, as well as for a greater reverence of all human life. There are numerous articles written, opinions expressed and laws enacted concerning abortion. Is it a personal issue? Is it a private issue? Is it a moral issue ? Is it a religious issue? The issue centers around life, therefore, it is a human issue. Despite the “issue(s)”, the Church teaches that ALL life is precious at the moment from conception to natural death.
A Prayer for Life
Father and maker of all,
You adorn all creation
with splendor and beauty,
and fashion human lives
in Your image and likeness.
Awaken in every heart
reverence for the work of Your hands,
and renew among Your people
a readiness to nurture and sustain
Your precious gift of life.
Grant this through our Lord
Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with You in
the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God forever and ever.
January 15, 2023
Dear Parishioners and Friends:
This week two significant 'happenings' are occurring: The Birthday of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Let us pray for all Christian People, that God might lead us to overcome the scandal of division that scars the body of Christ. Significant progress over the past 50 years is good, but there is much more to be done. Taken together these two celebrations call us to be open to God's grace as we pray for greater tolerance and a willingness to overcome those historic divisions.
As promised, I will be submitting a variety of reports. In the next column is the 2021-2022 Annual Financial Report. Overall, we did well. If we wish to continue, we need for those who call the Magdalene their spiritual home to support us so that we can support others, especially those charitable Not For Profit organizations in the Tarrytown-Sleepy Hollow Communities. It was because of your commitment to the offertory, we were able to assist our needy brothers and sisters.
At the end of January, I will be hosting a meeting with our Liturgical Coordinator, Carol Mackey, to plan our Lenten & Easter celebrations. Part of this meeting will be devoted to taking inventory of the liturgical items that need to be replaced or updated. All interested parishioners are welcome to join us. Please see future bulletins for date, time, and place.
The liturgy is the responsibility of the entire community of faith. Let us always be willing to give our very best as we adore and praise the Lord during our celebrations of Sunday Eucharist, Solemnities, and Feasts.
January 8, 2023
Dear Parishioners and Friends:
The Christmas Season comes to an end this Monday with the celebration of the Baptism of the Lord. The Baptism of the Lord marks Jesus' mission. As we move into the new year, let us pray that we fulfill Jesus' mission. In our baptism, we become "heirs" and "co-partners" in Christ, in his death and resurrection.
At this time, I would like to thank the following parishioners who have given their time during the Advent & Christmas Season.
~ Carol Mackey for offering a wonderful Advent Morning of Prayer
~ Stephanie Fuller and her crew for organizing the annual Holiday Market. The proceeds raised were $2,251 and donated to the Kids Club of Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow.
~ Dotty Meehan, catechists and students who reenacted the nativity in their own special way.
~ Mike Bassett, Frank O'Donoghue, John Petry, Mike Doran, Stephen Kelly and Susan Fiorella for setting up the inside and outside creches. Thomas Matthew, Peggy Malone, Michaell Zachensky and Susan Barry for decorating the church.
~ The Eucharist Ministers, Lectors, Altar Servers, and Ushers who performed their tasks in such a meaningful manner.
~ John Dominick, the choir, Lindsey Minerva, the string quartet, Kelly Oram for their time and sacrifice that they have made and continue to make so that our parish worship might truly be a sacred action of the Christian Community.
~ Marianne Scott for her behind-the-scenes oversight that seamlessly provides a sense of welcome.
~ The anonymous donor for gifting us with an Automatic External Defibrillator.
~ The many acts of kindness that were shown to me.
In the next couple of weeks, I will be sharing a variety of reports. Today, I share with you the Sacramental Report (see next column). If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. I will do my very best to provide you with an answer. Please remember these numbers were generated prior to my pastoral assignment. Overall, The Magdalene is doing well in all of its ministries, community outreach and most importantly in devotions.
For those who remain uncomfortable being a part of the congregation, I hope that you might seek an opportunity to receive Holy Communion at Mass. The Eucharist remains central to the life of all Catholics.
January 1, 2023
Dear Parishioners and Friends:
How wonderful it is for all of us to have a clean slate as we begin the first day of 2023! Even if you don't make any New Year's resolutions, this is an exciting time. It is a time that we can forget our past mistakes and look forward to new opportunities.
Do you know how long the Christmas Season lasts? With all of the pre-season preparation, some determine it to be over on December 26, which is so evident when we see the Old Tenenbaums on the side of the curb. The Christmas season begins on Christmas Day and concludes with “the Commemoration of the Baptism of the Lord. This feast is a fitting climax to the season of expectations and hope in the comings of the Lord in Advent and his manifestations of all nations in Epiphany '' (Kevin Irwin). Although the Christmas tree is NOT a religious symbol, the creche is. In Italy, it remains up until February 2nd. We should enjoy this wonderful season with family and friends, basking in the splendor of the season and reason. We will begin another important liturgical season, Lent, next month on Ash Wednesday, February 22nd.
In upcoming weeks, I will be sharing with you:
● 2022 Financial Report
● 2022 Sacramental Report
● 2022 Christmas Collection
● 2022 Christmas Thank You Note
● 2023 Cardinal’s Annual Stewardship Appeal
● 2023 Lenten Schedule
● A Mailing from DP Murphy
● A “Wish List” of Liturgical Items
We are still in need of a Parish Administrator and Director of Religious Education. These positions are part-time.
I wish to alert you about reports of email and text scams that use the name of the pastor to solicit funds in the form of gift cards or cash donations. Such requests are fraudulent. Do not reply and report them immediately as spam. Please note: Official electronic communications from the parish will always come from TheMagdalene.org domain.
“Kindness is the golden chain by which society is bound. ”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe