June 13, 2021

June 13, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners,

Summer seems to be arriving very quickly here in Brooklyn! As I write this letter, we are on day #2 of the 90-degree weather. As always, we must continue to thank God for the gift of his creation. We are blessed to be able to bask in God’s beauty in all that he created. As we move into these summer months, we are invited to take time for rest and relaxation, but to never forget our faith in Christ Jesus. We are reminded in today’s second reading from Paul’s letter to the Corinthians that we walk by faith not by sight. Our faith is at the very core of who we are as disciples of Christ Jesus. Jesus gives us this beautiful parable of the mustard seed in today’s gospel. The kingdom of God is like a mustard seed. It is the smallest of all seeds but when sown becomes the largest of plants. We must continue to sow the seeds of faith here in Bedford Stuyvesant to allow it flourish and grow. May these weeks of summer be a time of rejuvenation and renewal as we continue to be people of faith, hope and love. Continue reading “June 13, 2021”

June 13, 2021

June 6, 2021

Dear Parishioners,

Today is the Solemnity of Corpus Christi (Body and Blood of Christ). As Catholics, we believe that the Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith. On that very first Holy Thursday, as the Lord gathered with his disciples, he has his Last Supper with them. As he takes bread and wine, Jesus says to them, “This is my body, This is my blood”. It was at this moment that Jesus instituted the Eucharist. It is in the Most Blessed Sacrament, that we receive Jesus himself. We encounter the living Lord who is present in body, blood, soul, and divinity. On this Corpus Christi Sunday, we give thanks and praise to God for the gift of the Eucharist. Each Sunday when we gather for Mass, we enter into the mystery of our salvation, that is rooted in the Eucharist. Christ is the great High Priest, who gives of himself for us, his holy people. I invite you to spend time before our Lord present in the Blessed Sacrament. Allow him to speak to the depths of your hearts, as we strive to bring his light and love to all his people. As I mentioned a few weeks ago, today the Diocese of Brooklyn begins now to exercise the obligation to attend Sunday Mass. It goes without saying that if you are sick and not feeling well, you should not come to church, but for those of us who are “able body”, we should continue the practice of attending Sunday Mass each week and receiving with devotion the Holy Eucharist. May the light of Christ continue to shine forth for all the world to see. 

Continue reading “June 6, 2021”

June 13, 2021

May 30, 2021

Dear Parishioners,

With the celebration of Pentecost last week, we officially concluded the Easter season and now have moved to the Ordinary Time of the liturgical year. There are though two beautiful solemnities that we commemorate on the two Sunday’s after Pentecost. Today is the solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. Next Sunday we will celebrate the feast of Corpus Christi (Body and Blood of Christ). As Catholics, we believe that God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. We invoke the Blessed Trinity throughout all of our prayers. It is in the three persons of the Blessed Trinity that we know who God is. We hear in today’s gospel of Jesus sending out his disciples to baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. To this very day, when a priest or deacon baptizes, he would use those exact words at the moment he pours water. Our faith is rooted in the Trinity! As we invoke the Blessed Trinity, let us pray that God will continue to show us his love and mercy. Continue reading “May 30, 2021”

June 13, 2021

May 23, 2021

Dear Parishioners,

Today we celebrate the great feast of Pentecost. We commemorate the moment Jesus bestowed upon us the gift of the Holy Spirit. Today’s gospel depicts Jesus in the midst of his disciples saying to them, “Peace be with you”. On this Pentecost Sunday, we pray for peace in our world, that the Holy Spirit will continue to guide and strengthen all of God’s holy people. We pray that the Holy Spirit will renew the face of the earth. Each of us was given the gift of the Holy Spirit at our baptism. We were then sealed with the Holy Spirit at Confirmation. It is on this feast of Pentecost that the Church comes into existence. It is within the sacramental life of the Church that the Holy Spirit makes it dwelling. Let us live in the Spirit so that we will continue to build up the Body of Christ here on earth. Continue reading “May 23, 2021”

June 13, 2021

May 16, 2021

Dear Parishioners,

We have come to the 7th and last Sunday of the Easter season. Next week we will celebrate the great feast of Pentecost, the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Church. I hope that these days of Easter have been moments of encounter with the Risen Lord. We have seen throughout this season of how the followers of Christ encountered him in so many different ways. We hear in today’s gospel passage the beautiful prayer that Jesus says to the Father for us. The Lord is praying that we be consecrated in the truth, that the word of God is that absolute truth. As we prepare to celebrate Pentecost, we thank God for the gift of the Holy Spirit. May that spirit of truth resonate within us, now and for the ages to come. Continue reading “May 16, 2021”

June 13, 2021

May 9, 2021

Dear Parishioners,

Today is the 6th Sunday of Easter. This Easter season just seems to be flying right by! We continue to give thanks and praise to God for the gift of his son Jesus who has been raised from the dead! Our scripture readings for Mass today speak to us of the commandment of love. We must love one another because God is love. The Lord is very clear in today’s gospel that we must love one another. We know that love is one of those words that can be easily said, but we are called to live the love that Christ is asking us to do. We are called to love one another in the same way that God loves us. It is difficult to love the person who has hurt us, its human to feel that way. The Lord though wants us to go deeper, to let go of the anger or animosity we may have for someone and to embrace them with love and mercy. May these last days of the Easter season be moments of encounter with the Risen Lord as we continue to truly love one another. Continue reading “May 9, 2021”

June 13, 2021

May 2, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

 

Dear Parishioners,

 

We are quickly moving through the great Easter season. As you know, during this season our first scripture reading at Mass will come from the Acts of the Apostles. The Apostles were the first witnesses of Jesus after his resurrection. They depict the stories of how they were sent out to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ. We hear how they converted thousands of people to Christianity. Our first reading at Mass today gives us the moment when Paul is welcomed to the fold as a disciple. His life was radically changed by his own conversion. We see how the Holy Spirit is at work in bringing people closer to the heart of Christ the Lord. As we prepare to celebrate the Solemnity of Pentecost in a few weeks, let us pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to transform our lives to become stronger and faithful witnesses of Christ.

Continue reading “May 2, 2021”

June 13, 2021

April 25, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

 

Dear Parishioners,

 

Today is the fourth Sunday of Easter. It is also popularly known as Good Shepherd Sunday. We hear in today’s gospel that Jesus is the good shepherd that lays down his life for his sheep. The Lord reminds us that the sheep hear the voice of the shepherd calling out to them. We know that the Lord calls out to us every day. Jesus is that shepherd who guides and nourishes us as his flock. It is on this good shepherd Sunday that we also pray for an increase of vocations to the priesthood. Today our Holy Father Pope Francis will ordain new priests at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. We must pray for more shepherds here on this earth to guide the flock of the Church. I thank the Lord each day that I am able to be a good and holy shepherd to all of you here at St. Martin de Porres Parish. May Christ continue to lead all of us to the eternal kingdom that awaits us. As I write this letter, we as a nation witnessed the verdict in the murder trial of George Floyd. We must continue to pray for peace and justice in our society, that we may all live in peace and harmony. Allow me to share with you the statement of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops on the guilty verdict: “Today, a jury found Derek Chauvin guilty of the murder of George Floyd. As we receive this result, we recall that God is the source of all justice, love, and mercy. The death of George Floyd highlighted and amplified the deep need to see the sacredness in all people, but especially those who have been historically oppressed. Whatever the stage of human life, it not only matters, it is sacred. Let us pray that through the revelation of so much pain and sadness, that God strengthens us to cleanse our land of the evil of racism which also manifests in ways that are hardly ever spoken, ways that never reach the headlines. Let us then join in the hard work of peacefully rebuilding what hatred and frustration have torn down. This is the true call of a disciple and the real work of restorative justice. Let us not lose the opportunity to pray that the Holy Spirit falls like a flood on our land again, as at Pentecost, providing us with spiritual, emotional, and physical healing, as well as new ways to teach, preach, and model the Gospel message in how we treat each other.” Continue reading “April 25, 2021”

June 13, 2021

April 18, 2021

FROM THE PASTOR’S DESK

 

Dear Parishioners,

On this third Sunday of Easter, we continue to bask in the joy of the resurrection. Our scripture passages allow us to enter spiritually into the appearances of Jesus to his disciples after his resurrection. Our gospel passage today shows Jesus in the midst of his disciples and he says to them, “peace be with you.” His disciples are afraid and terrified because they think it’s a ghost! The Lord invites them to touch him and all of a sudden, their hearts are no longer filled with terror or fear but with the peace of Christ. During these next few weeks of Easter, we are invited to pray for peace. We pray that the peace of Christ will resonate throughout our community and throughout the world. Our second reading from the letter of St. John reminds us to keep the word of God alive in our hearts. It is the word of God, that is Christ himself that is perfected in us. Let us pray that Christ, the risen Lord will bestow His love, mercy, and peace upon all of us his children.

St. Peter Claver Church Raffle Fundraiser

I would like to take this opportunity to thank those of you who have purchased a raffle ticket for the St. Peter Claver 100th anniversary fundraiser. It has been a great success so far! There is still plenty of time to purchase a raffle to win one of the five amazing prizes. Tickets are $10 each and they can be purchased after all of the masses from any anniversary committee member or by coming to the parish office during business hours.

Continue reading “April 18, 2021”

June 13, 2021

April 11, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

 

Dear Parishioners,

 

Today is the second Sunday of the Easter season. This Sunday has popularly become known as Divine Mercy Sunday. On the Second Sunday of Easter of the Jubilee Year 2000, at the Mass for the Canonization of St. Faustina Kowalska, Pope Saint John Paul II declared the Sunday after Easter be called “Divine Mercy Sunday. St. Faustina was a Polish nun who received visions from Jesus, including one of Jesus wearing a white garment with beams of red and white coming from His heart, which came to be known as the image of Divine Mercy. Divine Mercy Sunday focuses on the gift of mercy and love given through Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. As Pope Saint John Paul II stated, “Divine Mercy reaches human beings through the heart of Christ crucified.” We pray that God’s mercy will come upon our world so that we may grow as faithful and holy witnesses of Christ Jesus. Today’s gospel passage is one of my favorites. It is the story of doubting Thomas. Thomas must place his hands into the wounds of Christ to believe that he is alive. Once Thomas is able to do that he makes a profound statement of faith, “My Lord and My God.” On this Divine Mercy Sunday, may those words resonate in our hearts as we continue to bask in the joy of Easter.

Continue reading “April 11, 2021”