Announcements / News

Our Lady of Guadalupe Consecration Parish Awakening Night

Next Tuesday, May 21, from 7:00 – 9:00 PM, SEAS will host an Our Lady of Guadalupe Consecration Parish Awakening Night. What is an Awakening Night? An Awakening Night is an Evening of Prayer, Preaching and Testimony centered on the message of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Join us at SEAS’ Awakening Night next Tuesday!

With all that has gone on – and is going on – in our world and in our Church, I make this personal, special request that every parishioner come to this Awakening Night to show their support for – and, more importantly, to pray for – our Church, our Diocese and our Parish, our Bishop and all Priests, our Country and all Nations, for Vocations and for our Blessed Mother’s never-failing intercession for all of our hopes and dreams, needs and intentions.

Taking part in this Awakening Night is even more important for those who serve in any Parish Ministry at SEAS: Liturgical, Faith Formation [RF catechists, aides, hall monitors, Adult Faith, RCIA, CLOW, VBS, Altar Servers, Passion Play and Epiphany Pageant ministers, Wedding Prep, Baptismal Prep, Pre-Cana, Ushers], Social or Spiritual. For unless we who minister to the Parish are updated in the faith, we cannot minister to our fellow parishioners to the best of our ability. And, by seeing you, they might be prompted to join in ministry.

Lastly, this Awakening Night is a great way to understand why our Parish, with Saint Mary Church in Rutherford and Saint Justin Church in Toms River, is sponsoring a 5 day Pilgrimage to the Our Lady of Guadalupe Shrine in Mexico November 18-22, 2019. Having previously known little about this 1500’s Marian Apparition, the more I find out about it – the more meaningful the pilgrimage has become.

SO – PLEASE JOIN US AT SEAS NEXT TUESDAY NIGHT – MAY 21 – 7:00 – 9:00 PM.

Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us. Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, pray for us.

Father Tom

Pre-Lent Meeting This Sunday – 2 Page Handout

From: “Gina Perez” <gperez@easeton.net>
To:”Gina Perez” <gperez@easeton.net>
Cc:”Mariam Nawab” <mnawab@easeton.net>, “Confirmation” <confirmation@easeton.net>
Sent:Thu, 21 Feb 2019 18:36:04 +0000

Dear Catechists and Aides,

Attached is a handout (2 pages) that you will NOT receive at the meeting this Sunday, but a copy that you should have.

These two pages will be emailed to parents in the next few weeks.

The first page is a Lenten activity and the second page is all about Easter.

Thank you.

See you Sunday.

Gina

Catechist, Aide & Substitute Meeting Handouts – Aug. 26

Dear Catechists, Aides, and Substitute Catechists,

Please review the attached documents prior to the Catechist meeting this Sunday, Aug. 26th.

This is a very important meeting and you will get all the information you need to begin the new Catechetical year.

If you have not already responded to attending the meeting, please let me know.

Thank you to those who have already responded.

Gina
Catholic Prayers

Ten Tips Maintaining Discipline

Student Conduct 2018

RELIGIOUS FORMATION OPPORTUNITIES 2018

Reminders for Catechists

The Catechists Aide

Catechist Job Description

Aide Job Description

Substitute Catechist Job Description

Mass this weekend in Polish

From: Jackie Ferrari
Sent: Thursday, July 19, 2018 8:16 PM
To: All SEAS Parishioners
Subject: Mass this weekend in Polish

This Saturday, July 21, our Parish is happy to be hosting a group of Polish pilgrims who are on a bicycle pilgrimage from Boston to Our Lady of Czestochowa Shrine in Doylestown, Pennsylvania.

There are three Priests with them on this pilgrimage, and they celebrate Mass each day.  On Saturday evening they will be celebrating Mass – in Polish – at approximately 6:45 PM depending on when the church is ready after our regular 5:00 PM Mass.  Mass will be for the proper Sunday and would fulfill your Sunday obligation. Since the start time could be a bit earlier, it is recommended you arrive by 6:30 PM in order not to miss the start of Mass.

The group representative, Monika, said they would be thrilled if anyone from our Parish would like to join them for Mass.  Help us make our fellow Catholics feel welcome in our Parish home.  If you do attend, please feel free to take photos and email them to me at parishoffice@easeton.net.

Thanks!

Jackie Ferrari

A New Parish Pictorial Directory

A New Parish Pictorial Directory

We have one more opportunity to celebrate Father Tom’s 25th Anniversary of Ordination to the Priesthood!

When asked about a new directory, Fr. Tom said, “It’s something I would like for my 25th Anniversary!”  Help us to make this happen for him.

All are invited to be photographed to be included in our NEW PARISH PICTORIAL DIRECTORY.  We are partnering with Lifetouch for this project so every family photographed receives a complimentary directory and an 8×10 portrait.

COLLEGE STUDENT FAMILIES – August dates were selected to ensure your family could be photographed as a complete family.  Please make sure to reserve your appointment early, as these dates are open to the entire Parish.

PHOTOGRAPHY DATES

Wednesday, August 8 & Thursday, August 9

Tuesday, August 21 & Wednesday, August 22

Wednesday, September 19 & Thursday, September 20

* Additional dates will be available in September as needed!

Click here to reserve a time to be photographed.

2018 Lenten Insert

Lent/Easter Triduum 2018    Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Church, Three Bridges, NJ

 

“Repent, and believe in the Gospel!”

 

Will You Make Jesus Your ‘Valentine’

this Ash Wednesday and all of Lent?

 

This year’s liturgical calendar is very quirky: first, we had the shortest possible Advent
and Christmastime; now it’s Ash Wednesday
on Saint Valentine’s Day and Easter
on April Fools’ Day! [Calendar trivia: this last happened in 1945.] All we needed was Saint Patrick’s Day on a Friday for a full house! What are devout, practicing Catholics, who take seriously the obligation to fast and abstain on certain days, to do?

 

Since we are called to imitate Jesus, who fasted for forty days and nights in the desert, the Church calls us to certain communal fast days: to give public witness to the One Faith; to gain self-control, mastery over our bodies, minds and hearts; and to rightly prepare for special events like Easter or Christmas, a Rite
or Sacrament. So the Church has every right and a solemn duty to mandate days on which we should fast and/or abstain from meat or other things.

 

Some childishly try to excuse themselves from these time-honored disciplines by quoting Jesus: “You have nullified the word of God for the sake of your tradition. Hypocrites, well did Isaiah prophesy about you when he said: ‘This people honors me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines human precepts.'” [Matthew 15:6-9]
On the other extreme are those who suffer from scourge of scrupulosity, who anguish over minute details, like worrying if a meat-based broth is a sinful violation of Church discipline.

 

While the Church also permits us to substitute other acts of penance when abstaining or fasting is not possible, or to perform these disciplines on another day … there’s only one day each year when the Church imposes blessed ashes, distributes blessed palm, and pulls out all the stops to celebrate the Last Supper [Holy Thursday], the Passion and Death of the Lord [Good Friday] and His Resurrection [Easter]. These days should be a top priority, outranking all other things … even romantic, candlelit dinners and dare I say … sporting events and pastimes! Here are my humble suggestions for dealing with these issues:

 

Adjust Your Schedule to Make Jesus FIRST. As I mentioned above, some devotions and sacramentals come but once a year, so make time for them; you can ‘dine with your honey’ any day. Besides, with all due respect to restaurant owners and workers, eateries are jammed on Saint Valentine’s Day, with limited menus, and even jacked up prices. Celebrate some other day, when it’s cheaper and less crowded! [Perhaps because I think that way is why God called me to celibacy!]

 

Accept the Challenge. If you’re giving up chocolate, candy or fancy stuff for Lent, rise to the occasion – and keep your promises, even on special days! [While there is no ‘official’ ruling whether we must fast on Sundays and Solemnities in Lent, I believe they ‘count’ as fasting days, or we would not omit the Gloria and Alleluia, not use purple vesture.] Anyway, in the true Lenten
spirit, give those sweets or flowers to someone who otherwise would not get them, and who goes unappreciated, unnoticed or even unloved … Jesus will be most pleased! But if you must … keep it simple … and remember to do your Lenten
penance some other day.

 

Firm Up Your Faith Foundation with Loved Ones.. As the Bible says: “Unless the LORD build the house,
they labor in vain who build.” [Psalm 127:1a]
This Lent ‘add more God and Church’ to your relationships. Receive ashes together; choose joint Lenten disciplines or penances; pray together in communal services like the Stations
or at home; do charitable works together, like serve at a soup kitchen or shelter. Make it your Lenten
‘penance’ to send a secret Valentine
to someone every day this Lent
… and don’t forget to send one to Jesus, at least once a day, via prayer, fasting and almsgiving. May God grant us a spiritually uplifting Lent, true repentance, and an Easter
of unending joy!

 

Rev. Thomas J. Serafin, KHS – Pastor

+ Mardi Gras
Tuesday February 13 +


Join in ‘Fat
Tuesday’ fun: 6-7:30 pm; the parish provides pasta, bread & salad. If your last name begins with A-L, please bring single serving sized waters, sodas or juices to serve 6-12; M-Z, a dessert to serve 6-8 and thence to the church for Night Prayer and the stripping of the church for Lent at 7:30 pm and the burning of last year’s palms for this year’s ashes.
Contact the Parish Office for details.
For questions
about the supper, contact Hillary Hall at hallrick10@yahoo.com or Patricia Rivero at privero@comcast.net.


Ash Wednesday

February 14

 

Fasting from all signs and sounds of festivity, we strip away all that keeps us from focusing on God. Blessed ashes mark the start of our Lenten journey of self-denial, penance and prayer, for we must ‘spring clean’ our homes and our souls! Ashes are a sign of repentance and mortality so those of any
age may receive ashes. In Ash Wednesday’s First Reading the Prophet Joel includes “infants at the breast” in the fasting and communal penance imposed on the people
.

 

 

Ashes are distributed during Mass at:

 

6:30 am – 9:00 am – 7:30 pm

 

and at a

Liturgy of the Word

[no Holy Communion]

for Adults at 12:00 noon

and for Children at 5:00 pm:

 

Grade 2 and Older: Church

Grade 1 and Younger: Parish Hall

 

Easter Precept or Easter Duty

 

All Catholics are obligated to receive Holy Communion at least once a year, between the 1st Sunday of Lent, February 18, and Trinity Sunday, May 27. Those conscious of serious, grave or mortal sin must celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation
first; they must go to Confession before receiving Holy Communion.


Fast & Abstinence Guidelines


Those 14 and older are to ABSTAIN
from meat on Ash Wednesday and all Lenten Fridays. Those between 18 and 59 should FAST
by eating only one main meal and two smaller ones on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. Those unable to abstain or fast for a valid reason [i.e., St. Patrick’s Day party or wedding] may abstain on another day or perform a different penance; Canon law only permits PASTORS to dispense from fasting or abstaining. Ignoring penitential days, without good cause, is a serious sin of omission. Our Bishops ask us to abstain from meat on Friday all year long for Pro-Life causes
and world
peace
.

 

 

Sunday Mass Obligation

 

Saturday at 5:00 pm

 

Sunday at 8:00 – 9:30 – 11:30 am

 

 

Morning Mass – Monday through Friday

9:00 am

 


Food Collection – Operation Rice Bowl

 

To help feed the hungry locally and abroad: make a donation to our special ‘Fruit of our Fast’ collections on
Ash Wednesday
and Passion [Palm] Sunday
or donate money and/or nonperishable food to help those less fortunate. All are also encouraged to take part in ORB: Operation
Rice
Bowl
; please return ORB donations on Holy Thursday, March 29, to the special ORB
box
near the sanctuary.

 

Simple Suppers & Stations of the Cross

Friday Evenings

 

The church is open weekdays from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm – and during Religious Formation sessions until 8:00 pm – for private praying of the venerable Stations of the Cross; booklets are kept beneath the Parish Prayer Book ledge. On Fridays, our Knights of Columbus
prepare a simple supper at 6:30 pm before Stations
are prayed at 7:30 pm, led by:

 

2/16:
Respect Life Ministry

2/23: Confirmation Candidates/Teen Ministry

3/02:
Liturgical Ministers: EM’s, Readers, Sacristans

3/09:
Knights of Columbus & Men’s Group

3/16:
Women’s Spirituality & Lazarus Ministry

3/23:
Altar Servers

 

On Good Friday
at 7:30 pm is our 16th annualWalking the Stations.’ We use Saint John Paul II’s all biblical Stations. Members of our Parish graciously share personal reflections on how we, the Body of Christ, must die and rise to new life each day!


The Sacrament of Reconciliation

Penance or Confession

 

Let Jesus, your ‘Lenten Valentine,‘ purge your heart and soul of sin in the primary sacramental experience of God’s mercy: by confessing our sins in the Sacrament of Penance
or Reconciliation
– aka Confession.’
While only all
mortal sins must be confessed, this Rite’s sacramental grace also purges us of our lesser or venial sins. It serves as a ‘check-up,’ helps nip sinful habits in the bud before they bloom into full-blown sins, and strengthens us against temptation and other distractions.

 

Those guilty of mortal sin may NOT receive Holy Communion until they confess them to a Priest. Confession is also encouraged in Lent
and Advent, before a Baptism, Confirmation
or Wedding
, or serving as a Sponsor or Godparent.

The 4 parts are:

 

CONTRITION.
To be contrite or remorseful we must know our sins, so we examine our conscience by shining God’s divine Light, found in Gospel values, the Ten Commandments, Precepts of the Church, Beatitudes and Seven Deadly Sins, into every aspect of our life. If you can’t come up with any sins, ask your family or friends to help … they know your sins!

 

CONFESSION.
Priests not only speak for God and the Church; as ‘doctor of the soul’
they help cure sick souls, as medical doctors help heal bodies – but only if we are totally open and honest. Begin with “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned”
or simply
say, “Please help me”
from behind a screen or face-to-face. We may remain anonymous, but should tell our state in life [married, single, ordained, a parent, etc.], and approximate date of our last confession. List all grave, serious mortal sins by number and kind: abortion, adultery, etc.; a general admission [I’m impatient, rude, insensitive, etc.] covers all lesser sins. An Act of Contrition
card is available in the confessional; at Penance Services we recite it from a printed program; don’t let not knowing an Act of Contrition keep you from this Sacrament of Healing!

 

ABSOLUTION.
Listen as the Priest prays; make the Sign of the Cross on yourself as he imparts it on you at the end of the beautiful Prayer of Absolution.

 

PENANCE.
To express our gratitude and offer a token of our willingness to try to avoid future sins, we perform a penance: a prayer, good deed or other sign. To celebrate Reconciliation come to the:

 

 

Parish Penance Service

WEDNESDAY – MARCH 21 – 7:30 pm

 

Several priests will hear private confessions after the communal Examination of Conscience & Act of Contrition at this annual Penance Service.

 

 

Or Saturday afternoons at 4:00 pm.

 

All MUST ARRIVE at 4:00 pm as Confessions

MUST END by 4:45 pm due to the 5:00 pm Mass!

 

Note: On Passion [Palm] Sunday eve,

confessions will be AFTER the 5:00 pm Mass.

 

Or call ANY Parish Office to make

an appointment with a Priest.

 

NO Confessions will be heard during

the Sacred Easter Triduum –

so plan to come to Confession early!

 

 

Lenten Enrichment Programs

 

Here’s how our parish helps adults grow in their Catholic Faith; for more info – or to register for any AFF program – please contact Diane Luceri, our AFF director, at 782-1475 x1114 or dluceri@easeton.net.

 


Lenten Program at SEAS:

The Footprints of God:

Jesus: The Word Became Flesh

 

Tuesdays, 9:30-11:00 am OR 7:30-9:00 pm

February 20, February 27, March 6, March 13

 

This Lent take some time to come to a deeper understanding of the ‘good news’ of Jesus by travelling to the land where Jesus walked! In these sessions we will take a ‘virtual pilgrimage’ to all the key places in Jesus’ life, including the places of his birth, his ministry and of his Passion, Death and Resurrection. After viewing the DVD presentation, we will then delve into Sacred Scripture and the Catechism of the Catholic Church for a deeper understanding of the Gospel. This is a great program for those travelling to Israel this year ~ and for those who wish they could do so! This program is perfect for the beginner as well as for those more experienced in bible study. There is no cost or home study required with this program. You will need the New American Bible and the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

Registration is required ~ please sign up no later than February 13.

 

Bonus Session: Catholicism: Amazed & Afraid

Bishop Robert Barron travels to the Holy Land in this session on Jesus to be held on the Tuesday following the completion of the Footprints study.

 


Catholic Books and CDs

 

You can also learn about your Faith on your own with the CDs and books that are available on the two kiosks at SEAS ~ one kiosk is in the hallway outside the narthex, the other is outside the Parish Hall. (books $4, CDs $3) The following books are terrific for a Lenten journey:

 

  • Perfectly Yourself
    by Matthew Kelly for use with Dynamic Catholic’s “Best Lent Ever”
  • The Case for Jesus
    by Dr. Brant Pitre

 

* Lenten special: buy both books for only $5

Get FORMED for Lent!

 

This Lent, take advantage of the dynamic online platform called FORMED. As a gift from your parish, every parishioner can have 24/7 access to the best Catholic content on any device with internet access, including your computer, smartphone and tablet – at no cost to you! If you have not yet done so, register at FORMED.org and enter our parish code: GK2J6P. You will set up your profile and be able to access the material at any time. There are many wonderful programs for Lent, with just a few of the many offerings highlighted below:

 

A Lent to Remember: A Lenten Encounter with Mercy: Explore the ways God reaches out to each of us with his mercy, most especially through the sacraments.

 

Forgiven: The Transforming Power of Confession:
Come to a greater understanding of the grace and healing offered in the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

 

Prayer: Finding Intimacy with God: Enrich your prayer life using the Lectio Divina method by learning how to open your heart to Scripture as the means to listen to God and then respond.

 

Symbolon:
The episodes that have a Lenten theme: The Story of Salvation, Who is Jesus?, The Paschal Mystery, Sacrament of Penance.

 


Open Forum with the Pastor

 

What do you want to know about our Faith, but are afraid to ask? Submit question[s], preferably signed, via parishoffice@easeton.net or on a note in the collection basket; Fr. Tom will try to explain all things with truth and uncharacteristic humor; date & time to be announced.

 


Lectio: Philippians: Life In Christ

 

Wednesdays, April 11 – May 16

9:30-11:15 am or 7:30-9:15 pm

 

This spring, join us for this bible study on St. Paul’s letter to the Philippians. Towards the end of his life, under arrest and awaiting trial in Rome, St. Paul writes this short but powerful letter to exhort the Philippians to have the mind of Christ, to live a life worthy of the Gospel, and, by God’s grace, to gain Christ.

 

2018 Bishop’s Annual Appeal:

‘Lighting a Fire in the Heart of Our World’

 

Give alms
by pledging to the Bishop’s Annual Appeal or BAA, which our Bishop, the Most Reverend James F. Checchio, moved to Lent and named it after his first pastoral letter, ‘Lighting a Fire in the Heart of Our World.’
Many in our Parish are blessed with many worldly resources; the BAA offers us a way to share the blessings God entrusts to us in a way that benefits the physically or spiritually poor and needy. Help us reach our Parish goal of $127,000.00
toward the Diocesan goal of $7.2 million. Pledge cards have been distributed during Mass; if you did not get one or need a replacement, contact the Parish Office so you can help with ‘Lighting a Fire in the Heart of Our World.’

 

 

 


 

 


Vocations & Lay Church Ministries

 

Is God calling you to be an Altar Server, Music Minister, Usher, Reader, etc.; catechesis: Religious Formation, Sacramental Preparation Instructor; or a Priest, Deacon, Sister or Brother? Speak to a Priest, Deacon or Religious.
‘Good Catholics’
must
pray for Vocations. For more info call 732-561-1990 or visit the Vocation Office’s Diocesan website: diometuchen.org.


Get Involved In Your Parish

 

Become a better Catholic Christian
by joining one of the many ministries, groups and organizations listed in the bulletin; with so many Masses, Funerals, Sacraments, faith formation for adults and children and other events, there’s something for everyone! ALL Parish groups warmly welcome new members!


Is God Remembered in Your Will?

 

While concern for our own and others’ needs may keep us from tithing a full 10% now, most should be able to reach this goal in their will. Is God and your Parish remembered … in your will?

The RCIA:

The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults

Rites of Sending & Election

 

We are overjoyed to have 3 candidates for full communion in the Catholic Church; they are already baptized and will celebrate their Confirmation and First Eucharist at the Easter Vigil:

 

Lauralee Pakozdi, sponsored by Wendy VanDine

Kim Parisi, sponsored by Jim Parisi

Robert Robbins, sponsored by Rebecca Robbins

 

We join our prayers with those who will be chosen as the Elect or welcomed as Candidates by Bishop Checchio in our Cathedral of Saint Francis in Metuchen on Sunday, February 18. If you – or any ADULT you know – wishes to become Catholic or needs First Eucharist or Confirmation, please contact Diane Luceri at the Parish Office, extension 1114.


Annual Catholic Men’s Conference

Saturday – March 10 – 8:00 am – 4:30 pm

Seton Hall University – South Orange Campus

 

This annual Conference can help Catholic men experience fellowship, learn about, renew and strengthen their faith. Speakers include: Cardinal Joseph Tobin, Archbishop of Newark; Jesse Romero & Hector Molina, Catholic Lay Evangelists; Joe Lombardi, assistant coach of the New Orleans Saints and grandson of legendary coach Vince Lombardi. Also included: Confession time; a Holy Hour; an Adoration Chapel open all day for prayer; music, exhibitors and camaraderie. Registration is $25 per attendee ages 18 years and older. Breakfast and lunch included. Register at: www.NJCatholicMen.org. For more info email CatholicMen@rcan.org
or call 973-497-4545.


Unlocking the Beauty of the Revised

Roman Missal’s Orations [Prayers]

 

Do you read each week’s bulletin article on the revised Mass orations as your Lectio
Divina’
or weekly ‘holy study?’ Check our Parish website for past articles! Make reading it your weekly discipline!

 

All Liturgical Ministers’ Gathering

Laetare Sunday – March 11 – 4:00 pm

 

 

All who serve in ANY Liturgical Ministry: Altar Servers, Deacons, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, Masters-of-Ceremonies, Music Ministers, Sacristans, Readers
– and all who wish to serve in these ministries – are invited to this annual gathering. We will review basic policies, review Holy Week’s elaborate rites, celebrate Evening Prayer and enjoy fellowship and refreshments. If you’re bringing an appetizer, wine or other drink to the ‘after party’ – or wish to help with set-up or clean-up – let Jackie know at the Parish Office.

 


 

Homebound Parishioners

 

 

Contact the Parish Office to have the Most Holy Eucharist brought to the sick or homebound, or to have a loved one, neighbor or friend visited by a parish minister.

 


 

2017 Christmas Collection Stats

 

 

Donation    Households    Total

 

$50.00 – $99.00    145    $7,590.00

$100.00 – $499.00    291    $43,734.00

$500.00 – $999.00    19    $10,050.00

$1,000 & Up    8    $9,000.00

Total        463    $70,374.00

Grand Total        $80,263.00

 

463 Households gave 88% of our Christmas Collection.

 


 

Parish Office Phone: 908 – 782 – 1475

 

Parish website: www.easeton.net

 

Parish email: parishoffice@easeton.net

 

Diocesan website: diometuchen.org

 

Vatican website: vatican.va

 

 

 

No Greater Love

Sunday – April 15 – 4:30 pm

 

 

Presented by


 

Written by Janeen Stevens

Directed and choreographed by Carol Ferrone

Musical direction by Gerard De Man, Jr.

Back by Popular Demand!

‘No Greater Love’
is a vibrant musical drama, similar to the ‘Whom Shall I Send?’ presentation done at SEAS last year; ‘No Greater Love’
was performed here in 2015 & 2016. Don’t miss this one hour captivating performance that brings to life the timeless, sacred story of the Passion of Jesus Christ. There is NO admission fee, but there will be a freewill offering after the performance, followed by refreshments in the Parish Hall. The Xavier Company,
or TXC, is a unique group of Christian performing artists in residence at NYC’s Saint Francis Xavier Church. These professionally trained actors, singers and dancers perform original works focused on themes of faith and social justice. They perform in churches throughout the tri-state area and will be at SEAS on
Sunday, April 15 at 4:30 pm.

Founded in 1982, TXC is celebrating its 36th anniversary of performing arts ministry in the tri-state area. TXC is renowned for performances that display both spiritual content and artistic excellence. After the performance, a BYOA [Bring your own Appetizer for 6] reception will take place in the Parish Hall; soft drinks and wine will be provided. To learn more about TXC
go to www.thexaviercompany.org.
Don’t miss it!

Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion

March 25

 

In Procession, with blessed palms, we honor Christ as our King and reflect on His Passion and Death. Masses are:

Saturday: 5:00 pm

Sunday:

8:00 am – 9:30 am – 11:30 am

 

All children are invited to our special Children’s Liturgy of the Word at ALL Masses this weekend; before Mass all children are invited to the center aisle; after the Procession they go to see a ½ hour age-appropriate video on Christ’s Passion, Death and Resurrection and return later than usual, during the Lord’s Prayer.

 


Monday of Holy Week – March 26

 

regular daily Mass at 9:00 am at SEAS

 

Chrism Mass – 7:30 pm at

Saint Francis Cathedral, Metuchen

 

Priests renew their Ordination promises and our Bishop blesses and consecrates the Holy Oils: the Oil of Catechumens used at Baptism, the Oil of the Sick used in the Anointing of the Sick, and the Sacred Chrism, used at Baptism, Confirmation, Holy Orders, and the blessing of new churches & altars. All are invited to our Cathedral for this ancient, moving ceremony. Pray for our Priests!

 


Tuesday of Holy Week – March 27

Wednesday of Holy Week – March 28

 

regular daily Mass at 9:00 am

 


Holy Thursday Morning – March 29

 

Morning Prayer at 9:00 am

 

[no morning Mass or any other Mass permitted]

 

coffee, bagels & fellowship afterwards

 

The Sacred Triduum & Paschal Fast

 

Lent ends as we begin Holy Thursday’s Mass of the Lord’s
Supper; we then enter the shortest but most central liturgical time: the three-day Easter Triduum. To more fully join in Christ’s Death and Resurrection, all are strongly encouraged to join in all Triduum events and the Paschal Fast, which is even more intense than the Lenten fast: all should fast from Good Friday until the Easter Vigil as a way of coming to the joys of the Sunday of the Resurrection with uplifted and welcoming hearts.”
[From the Ceremonial of Bishops # 295.]


Holy Thursday – March 29

 

We solemnly celebrate Jesus’ parting gifts of love: His abiding Presence in the Eucharist; His care and concern for us in the Ordained Priesthood; and Christian Service, our call to continue His work. For as Jesus said after washing the Apostles’ feet: “If I, therefore, the master and teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash one another’s feet. I have given you a model to follow, so that as I have done for you, you should also do.” [John 13:14-15]
In the Mass of the Lord’s Supper we serve by: washing feet, giving alms through Operation Rice Bowl, and ‘watching one hour’ with the Lord in Eucharistic Adoration until Night Prayer.

 

Holy Thursday Services

 

    Morning Prayer/Breakfast    9:00 am

 

    Mass of the Lord’s Supper    7:30 pm

 

    Night Prayer    11:00 pm

 

    Keeping watch in the presence

        of the Blessed Sacrament

        11:30 pm – 7:00 am

 

Our Respect Life Ministry ‘keeps watch’ in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament beginning immediately after Night Prayer on Holy Thursday until 7:00 am on Good Friday morning praying throughout the night for Pro-Life causes. All are invited to join (parishioners and non-parishioners alike). Come for one hour or two … or even for the whole vigil!

Good Friday – March 30

 

We meditate on Christ’s Passion and Death with ancient rituals and in profound silence. The church is open all day for private prayer and for public services: Morning Prayer, Children’s Passion Play, Main Celebration of the Passion of the Lord
and ecumenical Stations of the Cross. All should visit the church this day to thank God for His redeeming love!

 

Good Friday Services

    Morning Prayer    9:00 am

    Children’s Passion Play    12:00 noon

    The Passion of the Lord    3:00 pm

    Stations of the Cross    7:30 pm

 

Holy Saturday – March 31

 

Ancient tradition prohibits Mass this day; we keep watch at the tomb in solemn prayer. Pray for those who will be baptized and welcomed into our Church during this day of prayerful reflection.

 

 

Holy Saturday Services

    Morning Prayer

    with RCIA Rites    9:00 am

 

    Midday Prayer with

    Easter Food Blessing    12:00 noon

 

    Easter Vigil Mass    7:45 pm

 

 

The Easter Vigil

in the Holy Night

March 31 – 7:45 pm

 

Church law strictly requires that the ONLY Masses permissible on Holy Saturday begin AFTER nightfall, in darkness, so there can be no 5:00 pm Vigil Mass on Holy Saturday. The Easter Vigil Service, the climax of the liturgical year, which begins at
7:45 pm, is a four-part ritual with roots in antiquity. The four parts are:

 

SERVICE OF LIGHT.
The Paschal Candle, symbol of the Risen Christ, lit from the blessed fire, is brought into the darkened church. As all light their candle from the Christ-Light, the darkness of the tomb erupts into the warm glow of the Risen Lord’s presence!

 

LITURGY OF THE WORD.
We tell our scriptural story of God’s marvelous, saving deeds throughout history.

 

LITURGY OF BAPTISM & CONFIRMATION. With blessed Easter Water we renew our Baptismal Promises and welcome our newest members through the Sacraments of Initiation, making God’s saving deeds and the Risen Lord truly
alive in us, His Church!

 

LITURGY OF THE EUCHARIST.
In the highpoint of the Great Three Days [and the entire year] we share Eucharist with our newest members for the first time. We pledge ourselves anew to become Eucharist: to become Christ’s loving presence in our world.

 

NOTE: There is NO 5:00 pm Vigil Mass on Holy Saturday; the ONLY
MASS is at 7:45 pm.

 


Easter Sunday – April 1

 

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!

 

Easter Masses

 

Saturday Easter Vigil: 7:45 pm

 

Easter Sunday:

 

7:30 am – 9:00 am

10:30 am – 12:05 pm

 

[Note the different Easter Mass schedule!]

From the Pastor – 3rd Sunday of Advent – B – Gaudete [Rejoice] Sunday December 17, 2017


From the Pastor

 

3rd Sunday of

Advent – B

 

Gaudete [Rejoice] Sunday

 

December 17, 2017

 

 

By now we have had our fill of commercials showing idealistic and unrealistic images of tensionless, joy-filled, ‘perfect’ Christmases: late-night returning college students who make coffee; new luxury cars parked in snowy driveways; turkeys perfectly carved – at the table no less; Santas who bring everything wanted, already assembled! While we should dream of, hope and pray for a ‘perfect’ Christmas, we must also accept the fact that in our imperfect world, human weakness mars our best efforts. Even the Holy Family had its struggles: no room in the inn; a death-defying flight to Egypt to escape a madman; a child lost for three days …

 

Just as Jesus, Mary and Joseph endured every trial and challenge, so can we – IF we follow their example of total trust in God and His plan – and imitate their constant prayerfulness. Again, while Votive Masses are not usually celebrated during ‘privileged times’ like Advent, it might be good to keep the following orations close at hand, so we can pray them before family gatherings. Who knows: maybe this will be a more ‘perfect’ Christmas … if we ask for – and use – God’s help to make it so! Here are the Mass orations entitled For the Family.

 

Collect – For Promoting Harmony

 

O God, who are perfect unity and true charity,

grant your faithful one heart and one mind,

that the body of your Church,

which rests on the confession of the truth,

may flourish in harmony

and be made strong in enduring unity.

 

Through our Lord Jesus Christ … and ever. Amen.

 

ONE HEART AND ONE MIND.
Talk about a dreamy ideal: make us one heart and one mind!’ Some families, like my own, have ‘set rules’ for family gatherings: no discussions about politics, sports – or even religion. [That last one’s often tough for me to keep!] However, Jesus never ‘beat a dead horse;’ sometimes He disengaged with those whose hearts and minds were ‘dead set’ against His heart and mind. So when it’s a ‘no win’ situation – learn to let go and leave it in God’s hands!

Prayer over the Offerings – For Promoting Harmony

 

O God, who renew us in your image through your Sacraments and your commandments,

mercifully guide our footsteps in your paths,

that through these sacrificial offerings which

we bring we may possess the gift of charity,

for which you have taught us to hope.

Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Amen.

 

DIVINE HELP WITH HUMAN STRUGGLES.
So many try to ‘go it alone’ when they deal with stressful family situations … yet God is always ready to help – but we must ask for and use His help! While it’s difficult to keep the Lord’s Commandments as others break them, God never said, “Thou shalt not … unless others do.” Dealing with belligerent, issue-laden, negative family members does not give us the right to treat them as they treat us. And let’s admit it: sometimes we are the offenders. That’s where the Sacraments come in handy: the Eucharist gives us the grace to become another Christ; Penance, Confession or Reconciliation can heal us when we’ve caused the fire, or added fuel to it. Do we use the divine help God offers through the Commandments and Sacraments?

 

Prayer after Communion – For Promoting Harmony

 

We have received, O Lord,

the Sacrament of unity; grant us, we pray,

that, living in your house in holy accord,

we may possess the peace we hand on

and preserve the peace we have received.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

PASS ON WHAT YOU RECEIVE.

As members of God’s family, we are beneficiaries of so many gifts: pardon of sin; supernatural grace; community support; time-tested, divinely inspired teachings. Do we invite others to enjoy – and benefit from – what we so freely receive through the Chur
ch? Do we take tranquility and peace for granted? For having a holy family does not happen by magic; it requires prayer, sacrifice, patience, a positive attitude – and God’s grace. Are we doing our part to make this the most ‘perfect’ Christmas possible? Jesus, Mary and
Joseph,
pray for us!

 

In His holy Name,


 

 

 

Rev. Thomas J. Serafin, KHS

From the Pastor – 2nd Sunday of Advent – B December 10, 2017


From the Pastor

 

2nd Sunday of

Advent – B

 

December 10, 2017

 

 

Votive Masses are not usually celebrated in what we call privileged
time which is every
day in Advent and Christmastime, Lent and Eastertime, and on all Solemnities, Feasts
and Obligatory
Memorials. However,
there are exceptions to this rule, as when we want to honor our Blessed Mother, so the Roman Missal provides orations we call ‘Commons or generic prayers, some of which highlight a certain theme. This weekend, between two Marian Feasts: the Immaculate Conception
and Our Lady of Guadalupe, I’ll reflect on the ‘Common orations for use during Advent. For who else can better help us understand Advent: a time of joyful expectation, patient waiting, and hope-filled worry, than she who literally
lived these things for nine months: our Blessed Mother?

 

Collect – Common of the BVM in Advent

 

O God, who willed that at the message

of an Angel your Word should take flesh

in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary,

grant that we, who pray to you

and believe her to be truly the Mother of God,

may be helped by her interceding before you.

 

Through our Lord Jesus Christ … and ever. Amen.

 

TO BE PREGNANT WITH JESUS.
While only our Blessed Mother knows what it is like to literally carry the unborn Christ in her womb, Jesus said, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and act on it.” [Luke 8:21]
So, to be ‘His Mother’ and bring Him to birth, we must do what all pregnant women should do: we must prepare
ourselves to receive Jesus, nurture Him, and enable Him to come to birth through us. We must better understand how God wants to work now in us – by knowing how He worked through others in the past. We presume our Blessed Mother
knew the Scriptures, and was attuned to how God worked in the past. With her family, she celebrated the Jewish rituals that made their faith come alive, so she was well prepared to act on her faith when God invited her to do so. We who wish to bring Christ to birth must strive to follow Our Lady’s
example.

Prayer over the Offerings – BVM in Advent

 

Accept, O Lord, these offerings, and by your power change them into the Sacrament of salvation, in which, fulfilling the sacrifices of the Fathers, is offered the true Lamb, Jesus Christ your Son, born of the ever-Virgin Mary

in a way beyond all telling.

Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Amen.

 

WHO ARE ‘THE FATHERS?’
The Church uses the term ‘The Fathers’ to designate special groups of men who played key roles in the development of our Faith. The Council Fathers were the Bishops who had major input at the 1960’s Second Vatican Council. The Apostolic Fathers were Bishops who
personally knew the Apostles. From AD 100 to 800, the Patristic Fathers
formed the Creed and other dogmas.

 

But the Fathers referenced in this oration are those who, in Old Testament times, entered into covenants with God that were sealed with a sacrifice. Among them are Father Abraham, as Jesus calls him in a parable, who was tested by being asked to sacrifice his son, Isaac. The more we understand the sacrifices the Fathers of old made, the more the greatest sacrifice of all: God’s sacrifice of His Only Begotten Son, means to us. We presume our Blessed Mother’s
knowledge of these sacrifices helped her accept her Son’s self-sacrifice as she stood beneath His Cross.

 

Prayer after Communion – BVM in Advent

 

May the mysteries we have received, O Lord

our God, always show forth your mercy in us,

that we, who commemorate in faith the Mother of your Son, may be saved by his Incarnation.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

WILL YOU CELEBRATE THE INCARNATION?

While Christmas means many things, it is, above all, the mystery of the Incarnation:
God became a man, born of a Virgin, who totally gave herself to the Lord to make God’s plan a reality. How can we give of ourselves so God’s plan to save the world through Christ becomes a greater reality through us?
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us!

In His holy Name,


 

 

 

Rev. Thomas J. Serafin, KHS

From the Pastor – 1st Sunday of Advent – B – December 3, 2017


From the Pastor

 

1st Sunday of

Advent – B

 

December 3, 2017

 

 

Born on April 7, 1506 to nobility in Spain’s Xavier Castle, Saint Francis Xavier travelled extensively before he died on an island off China in 1552 on December 3, which is now his Feast Day. He was ordained a Priest on June 24, 1537, with Saint Ignatius of Loyola; they, with a few other friends, formed what would become the Jesuit Order. Pope Paul III denied his request to be a missionary to the Holy Land due to all the political unrest there; instead, in 1541, the Pope appointed him Papal Nuncio or Ambassador to Goa, India.

 

Three years later he went to preach on remote Indonesian islands; in 1549 he went to Japan, and made the first recorded Japanese convert, a man named Anjiro. Some say he was the first missionary to reach the Philippines. After a brief return to India, he set off for China, arriving in April, 1552, where he fell ill and died later that year. On each voyage he faced opposition and criticism; he also struggled to learn each culture and language: no easy feat in Oriental lands. He is often depicted preaching to those from many lands. Canonized with Saint Ignatius on March 12, 1622, Saint Francis Xavier is the patron saint of Missionaries and Catholic Missions.

 

Collect – Saint Francis Xavier, Priest

 

O God, who through the preaching of Saint Francis Xavier won many peoples to yourself,

grant that the hearts of the faithful

may burn with the same zeal for the faith

and that Holy Church may everywhere

rejoice in an abundance of offspring.

Through our Lord Jesus Christ … and ever. Amen.

 

LET THE CHILDREN COME TO ME.”
This quote from Jesus, recorded in three of the four Gospels, was crucial to Saint Francis Xavier. In each town he entered, he walked through the streets ringing a bell [a precursor of the ‘Good Humor man?’] to attract children, whom he took to a church for catechetical lessons. What do we do to share our Faith with children?

 

Prayer over the Offerings – Saint Francis Xavier, Priest

 

Receive, O Lord, these offerings we bring you

in commemoration of Saint Francis Xavier, and grant that, as he journeyed to distant lands out of longing for the salvation of souls, so we, too, bearing effective witness to the Gospel,

may, with our brothers and sisters,

eagerly hasten towards you.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

DO WE HELP OR HURT THE CAUSE?
One of his greatest obstacles in spreading the Faith was the unchristian, often scandalous behavior of Christians! He was often embarrassed by the conduct of Portuguese sailors and businessmen, many of whom had come to India simply seeking adventure. Many had even been prisoners or troublemakers back home, and their bad example severely hindered the good he tried to do. By our words and example, do we hurt or hinder the cause of evangelization?

 

Prayer after Communion – Saint Francis Xavier, Priest

 

May your mysteries, O God, kindle in us that

fire of charity with which Saint Francis Xavier burned for the salvation of souls, so that, walking ever more worthily in our vocation,

we may obtain with him the reward you promise to those who labor well in your harvest.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

DO WE HAVE FIRE IN OUR BELLY?
Besides images of his vast missionary activity [sailing
vessel, globe, catechism, crucifix] he is often depicted as a young, bearded
Priest, holding fire or a flaming
torch. For as his orations stress: he was aflame with a burning desire
to spread the Good News. He is credited with making 40,000 converts and baptizing 10,000 in just one month! What a feat!

 

His body is still enshrined in a shrine in Goa, India, but his right arm
– with which he blessed and rang that bell – is in Rome’s Church of the Gesù, the ‘Mother House’ for all Jesuits. Do we allow ourselves to be consumed by the love of God? Do we have a burning desire to evangelize? Saint Francis Xavier, pray for us!

 

In His holy Name,

 


 

 

 

Rev. Thomas J. Serafin, KHS