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September 26, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners,

Today is the last Sunday in the month of September! We have officially arrived at the season of Fall/Autumn. You have heard me say to you that this is my most favorite time of the year. The weather is spectacular, not too hot and not too cold. I enjoy watching the Fall foliage and the smell of chimneys starting to roar again. The change of seasons reminds me of the beauty of God’s creation. As we begin this new season and a new month, we know that a new liturgical year is right around the corner with Advent. In just a few short weeks, I will be meeting with our parish pastoral council. At that meeting, we will discuss some of the new initiatives that will begin come the new liturgical year. We are looking to begin bible study courses along with adult catechetical sessions on the teachings of the Catholic Church. You will hear much more about these new initiatives and programs in the upcoming weeks. As always, everyone is invited to become more involved in the life of our amazing parish here in Bedford-Stuyvesant. If there is a ministry that you feel called to, please feel free to reach out to the head of that ministry or contact me at the parish office.

Continue reading “September 26, 2021”

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September 19, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners,

What a beautiful celebration we had last weekend in honor of St. Peter Claver! It began with Mass at the co-cathedral of St. Joseph with Bishop DiMarzio and the unveiling of the new Brooklyn Chapter of the Knights and Ladies Auxiliary of St. Peter Claver. Last Sunday we gathered at St. Peter Claver Church for a liturgy filled with joy commemorating the centennial anniversary of the founding of St. Peter Claver Church. We continue to celebrate as a parish family this great milestone of proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ for over 100 years now. I take this opportunity to thank the anniversary committee, who has worked so hard in planning and organizing events to highlight this important moment in the life of St. Peter Claver Church. I want to thank our parish choir, under the direction of Ms. Joan Delahunt and Mr. Joseph Murray. They have worked tirelessly over these last few weeks to make our liturgies prayerful and beautiful.

Continue reading “September 19, 2021”

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September 5, 2021

Dear Parishioners,

I cannot believe that we have come to Labor Day weekend! Summer just seemed to fly right by this year. As we begin another pastoral year together, we pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to guide and unite us together as a community of believers. We pray most especially for our youth who will begin another academic year. May the spirit of knowledge and fortitude be with them as they grow in the image and likeness of Christ the Lord. In today’s Gospel Jesus says to a deaf man: “Ephphatha”—”be opened.” his speech impediment was removed, and he spoke plainly. The opening of the man’s ears is a sign. Consider what it means for ears to be opened to hear the Word. As we begin a new pastoral year together, let us take heed of the words of Christ today as we journey together this year, may Christ the great High Priest be the core of all that we say and do. May Jesus Christ be praised, now and forever. Continue reading “September 5, 2021”

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August 29, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners,

I cannot believe that we are at the last Sunday of the month of August. I don’t know about you, but summer seemed to fly right by! Next weekend is Labor Day weekend, the un-official end of summer. I do hope that each of you were able to enjoy the rest and relaxation of these summer months, even in the midst of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic. Although things may have relaxed a bit, we must be reminded that this pandemic is still here amongst us. Please be sure to continue the habit of sanitizing your hands and to follow the recommendation of wearing a facemask. I would also encourage everyone, if at all possible, to get vaccinated. Recently our Holy Father, Pope Francis put out a video message calling all Catholics to get vaccinated out of love for one another. Our second reading from the letter of St. James reminds us that all good gifts come from God and God alone. We must thank God each day for the many beautiful gifts that he bestows upon us in our lives. We must be doers of the word, carrying out the message of Christ by the example of our lives. In our gospel today, Jesus reminds us to live out the commandments, not to just recite them. May we continue to live lives of faith, hope and charity, keeping the commandment of love alive in our minds and hearts. Continue reading “August 29, 2021”

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August 22, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners,

Last Sunday we celebrated the beautiful feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into heaven. The Assumption is a holy day of obligation so we were blessed for it to fall on a Sunday this year. On the Church’s liturgical calendar, one week after the Assumption we would celebrate the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which is today, August 22. Because the feast of the Queenship of Mary is not a holy day of obligation, the 21st Sunday of Ordinary Time takes precedence. I would invite you to say a special Hail Mary in honor of this beautiful feast that depicts Mary as Queen of Heaven and Earth. Mary continues to intercede for us, allowing us to grow closer to the heart of her son, Jesus Christ. We are reminded by the disciples in today’s gospel that Jesus has the words of everlasting life. Jesus himself tells us that the words he has spoken are spirit and life. It is Peter who will tell the Lord, “We have come to believe and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God.” May these words echo in our minds and hearts as we continue to follow the Lord ever so closer to the eternal Kingdom of God. Continue reading “August 22, 2021”

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August 15, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners,

The Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is one of my favorite Holy Days of Obligation. I am thrilled that we are able to celebrate this beautiful feast day on Sunday! As Catholics, we know that it was from the womb of the Blessed Mother that came forth the savior of the world, Jesus. Mary herself knows that she is not God, but the Immaculate Virgin God-Bearer. Once Mary’s earthly pilgrimage was complete, she was assumed into heaven, body and soul. The solemnity of the Assumption highlights this moment in the life of the Church where Mary is taken and seated as Queen of Heaven and Earth. As many of you know, most non-Catholics do not understand the role and image of Mary within the Church. We have many images and statues of the Blessed Virgin Mary, but we do not worship them or her. Our worship belongs to God, but we do ask for Mary’s powerful intercession on our behalf. We pray that though the intercession of Mary the mother of Jesus, that we will grow to be better and holier disciples of him. Our gospel passage today gives us Mary’s prayer known as the Magnificat. It is in visiting her cousin Elizabeth, that Mary prays these words beginning with, my soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my savior. Mary knows exactly who the savior is. Let us pray that as we commemorate the feast of the Assumption of Mary that we will allow our soul to proclaim the greatness and goodness of God, our savior. Continue reading “August 15, 2021”

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August 8, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners,

We continue to journey with the Lord during these summer months. Our scripture passages for Mass speak to us of how Jesus is the bread of life who gives of himself for us. Jesus tells us “the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world”. How blessed we are to be able to receive Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Over the next few weeks, we will continue to hear from St. John’s gospel’s Bread of Life discourse. We must never take for granted the powerful gift of the Holy Eucharist. St. Paul reminds us in today’s second reading that each of us are called to be imitators of God and to live in love. We must not allow anger, bitterness, and malice to get in the way of truly imitating God. Let us pray that we as a community of believers will continue to build up the Body of Christ, that is the Church here on this earth. Continue reading “August 8, 2021”

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August 1, 2021

FROM THE PASTOR’S DESK

Dear Parishioners,

As we enter into the month of August, we are continuously reminded of God’s love for us through the beauty of creation. I think that we can agree that the weather these last few days have been nothing less than spectacular. I do hope that each of you have been enjoying the beauty of God’s creation these last few days. St. Paul tells us in today’s second reading from his letter to the Ephesians that we must be renewed in the spirit. We are called to put away our old selves and former way of life and be renewed in Christ Jesus. Summer has always been a time of renewal and rejuvenation doing so always in Christ our Savior. Today, we begin to hear from St. John’s Gospel’s Bread of Life discourse. Throughout these next weeks, we hear Jesus tell us, “I am the bread of life”. Jesus tells us that whoever comes to him will never hunger and will never thirst again. We as Catholics know that the Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith. We gather as a community to celebrate the great gift of the Eucharist as Jesus gives of himself for us. May these remaining weeks of summer allow us to live in the image and likeness of Christ the great High Priest. Continue reading “August 1, 2021”

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July 25, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners,

Today is the last Sunday of July. Summer seems to be flying right by. I do hope that each of you have had the opportunity to enjoy the rest and relaxation of these summer months because as soon as you know it, September will be right here! Last Sunday we were reminded in the gospel passage that the Lord invited us to take time to rest, but to rest in his presence. We see in today’s gospel of how Jesus feeds the five thousand. Miraculously, our Lord turns five barley loaves and two fish into enough food for the five thousand to eat. We know that Jesus feeds us with himself. Each time we approach the Eucharist, the Lord gives of himself for our nourishment and sustenance. How blessed we are to receive Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament so that we can be fed and sustained. St. Paul reminds us in today’s second reading from his letter to the Ephesians that we must live with humility, patience and love. If your anything like me, patience is one of those traits that I pray for every day! There are moments that I lose my patience, either with people or situations. The key is to not allow our impatience to get in the way of imitating Jesus Christ. Let us pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to strengthen and guide us closer to the heart of Christ, for the hand of the Lord feeds us, he answers all our needs. Continue reading “July 25, 2021”

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July 18, 2021

From the Parochial Vicar’s Desk 

Dear Parishioners,

It is a beautiful day! We are entering another week of good news, and God is offering us a message of hope – promising us redemption and restoration. In the first reading of the 16th Sunday in the Ordinary Time of Year B, the prophet Jeremiah condemns those who maltreat other people and spells out God’s intent to redeem and restore the chosen people of God through his appointed shepherds to extricate the children of God from fearing and trembling (cf. Jeremiah 23:1-6). Are you in any form feeling lost in your work, in your family/relational life, in politics, in your intellectual life, and, more importantly, in your spiritual life? If that sounds like you, or you are facing other challenges not enumerated above, the psalmist assures us that “the Lord is [our] shepherd; [and] there is nothing [we] shall want” (Psalm 23:1). Whether or not we face difficulties in life, let us not be discouraged, for God is for us. Saint Paul reminds us that Christ intends to preach peace to both the successful and the hopeless – “those who are near and those who are far off” (Ephesians 2:18). The good news in all of this is that through Christ, all of us have access to the Father. The Father’s interest in caring for our wellbeing is further emphasized by Jesus in today’s gospel passage when he invites his disciples (and by extension, all of us) to “come away… and rest a while” (Mark 6:31). Taking some time off on a Sunday to worship God, decompress from life challenges, relieve worries, and evade the noise of life are ways to come away and rest awhile in God. Thank you for being a part of today’s Sunday worship! Continue reading “July 18, 2021”