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July 11, 2021

From the Parochial Vicar’s Desk 

Dear Parishioners,

Today is the 15th Sunday in Ordinary Time. As we collectively relish the euphoria of the celebration of our freedom last weekend with lots of fireworks, we seem to have fired ourselves back into action as free children of God charged with the work of evangelization. Our freedom first and foremost reminds us of God’s initiative for our redemption. Interestingly, the Church dedicates the month of July to the Precious Blood of Jesus, which is also a reminder of our redemption. Coincidentally the second reading is a prayer of praise to God for saving us in Jesus. St. Paul offers us the exercise of counting our blessings and offering thanksgiving to God for being the Source of our benedictions, in and through Jesus’ life, death, and Resurrection. It is essentially through Christ that God gave us a clear purpose in life—to praise and serve God and one another—with the Holy Spirit as a Helper in carrying out the task. We are, therefore, called to count our blessings instead of focusing unduly on our inadequacies and deficiencies. As we count our blessings, let us also remember to support our Churches in all ramifications as instruments for evangelization and continuation of Jesus’ redemption.  Continue reading “July 11, 2021”

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July 4, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Parishioners

Today is the Fourteenth Sunday of Ordinary Time. It is also 4th of July weekend. Happy Independence Day to all of you. July 4 has been known as the unofficial beginning of summer. As we begin these months of rest and relaxation, we continue to keep our eyes fixated on Christ. We of course never take a vacation from our relationship with Jesus. We hear in today’s second reading from St. Paul’s letter to the Corinthians that God’s grace is sufficient in us. Paul tells us that he would boast about his weaknesses so that the greatness of Christ can be fulfilled. What a beautiful way for us to follow the Lord in a deeper way. The Lord wants us to be true disciples of him, even in our faults, failures and weaknesses. May Christ continue to bless us in his love and mercy. Continue reading “July 4, 2021”

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June 27, 2021

FROM THE PASTOR’S DESK 

Dear Parishioners,

Today is the 13th Sunday of Ordinary Time. It is also the last Sunday of June! Where did the month go? As we begin these months of summer, we are constantly reminded to continue to keep Christ at the center of our lives. In whatever we plan to do this summer, let us not forget to pray and to attend Mass. All we do should be rooted in the great love God has for us and his holy people. We see in today’s gospel of how Jesus cures Jairus’ daughter. As Jairus is persistent in asking for Jesus to come and cure his daughter, the people at the royal official’s house has reported that his daughter has already died and there would be no need for Jesus to come. Our Lord disregards the message and tells Jairus, “do not be afraid, just have faith!” Immediately after saying that, Jesus goes to the house and brings the little girl to life. We must continue to be people of faith, never allowing anything or anyone to shake it. May the Lord bless our community of faith here at St. Martin de Porres Parish. Continue reading “June 27, 2021”

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June 20, 2021

From the Pastor’s Desk,

Dear Parishioners,

Today is the 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time. June seems to be flying right by us! The month of June has traditionally been the month of graduations and promotions. Last Friday, I was privileged to give the homily and keynote address to the 8th grade graduating class from our regional school, St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Academy. I also want to take this opportunity to congratulate all of our graduates from the parish. We pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to enlighten and strengthen our graduates. In today’s gospel, Jesus reminds us to have faith. Jesus is in the boat with his disciples and all of a sudden, a storm arises which terrifies his disciples. They tell Jesus that this storm may kill us! It is at that moment that the Lord commands the sea and the wind to be still. He then tells his disciples; don’t you have faith? We must continue to have faith in the Lord, even in the midst of the storms of life, knowing that Jesus will never abandon us. We hear in today’s second reading from St. Paul’s letter to the Corinthians that the love of Christ impels us. Let us pray that we will continue to be people of faith and witnesses of Christ’s abundant love.

Continue reading “June 20, 2021”

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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”

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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”

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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”

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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”

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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”

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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”