REMEMBERING FATHER JAY ON HIS BIRTHDAY

In this season of thanksgiving, we have many thanks to offer to Father Jay Bowden, who was born on this day in 1936.

It is over two years since Father Jay passed away. He remains in our thoughts, our hearts and our prayers.

In 2011, we assembled an audio of memories of seventeen cursillistas who had passed away. A full list of those remembered and the cursillistas who remembered them are down below.

At the end of the thirteen minute audio, Father Jay shares a memory of Joyce Walsh Zarsky. Father Jay ends his memory as he wishes Joyce to RIP - first saying Rest in Peace but  then changing it to in Rejoice in Peace. 

Rejoice in Peace, Father Jay. We love you and DeColores!

You can listen to the memories AT THIS LINK.

+++++

Phyllis McKinstry remembers Valerie Bromsky
Jackie Devine remembers her husband, Tom Devine
Johnny DiStefano remembers Bob Leone
Til Dallavalle remembers Arny Dupont
Rick Klarmann remembers Roger Webster
Mary Ann Dowd remembers her brother, Anthony Forte
Lisa Klarmann remembers Marcy Grady
Harry DiSereria remembers Cass DeFalco
Len Capobianco remembers Cass DeFalco
Gordon Reinold remembers Al Conde
Linda Capobianco remembers Stella Cifordella
?? remembers Ed and Norma Fitzgerald
?? remembers Jan and Fran Healing
Pat Burke remembers Father Tony Hemphill
Sister Clara Schroeder remembers Babe Stap
Hilarie Reinold remembers Joan Walsh Zarsky
Father Jay Bowden remembers 
Joan Walsh Zarsky

LETTER FROM ROBERT LAURICELLA

Dear Cursillistas,


This coming Thursday as we know is Thanksgiving. Do not know where the time goes.

We do have a lot to be thankful for. Jesus reminds us all  all the time that He is with us. I know i am thankful for the blessings he has Blessed me with,  especially when we stop to think about what we have experienced as a whole with the pandemic. Jesus reminds us that he is here with us.

This Coming Sunday is this feast of Christ the King.. I always loved this feast. 

As we come close to the season of Advent let us prepare ourselves for the Birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. Sometimes we get overwhelmed and caught up with all that has to be done for Christmas.Take time and pray and focus and walk with our Lord. Talk to him. He Knows what we want and desire in life.

I will be praying for all of you as i always do this Thanksgiving. Remember pray pray pray.

Happy Blessed Thanksgiving to all.

DeColores
Robert Lauricella
Lay Director.

P.S.: Remember our Mass will be Friday December 3  St. Johns R.C. CHURCH, 519 Chestnut Street, Lakehurst, NJ at 7PM.

Manchester Ultreya is hosting. They mentioned if anyone would like to bring something to add to the food you are welcome to bring cakes or cookies. 

Looking ahead our next SOL is Saturday December 11th. 10 am Epiphany R.C. Church.

A NOVEMBER MESSAGE by ROBERT LAURICELLA, LAY DIRECTOR

DeColores, Cursillistas,

As I reflect on the month of November, I always think of Thanksgiving as a day that we give thanks. We should be thankful everyday. Our Lord is smiling down on all of us. The Love he has for us is so profound. We are his and his we are. God is good all the time.

In the month of November we also remember all who have gone before us who are living their fifth day with Our Lord in heaven. Please know that I have everyone on my heart and on my prayer list.

Hope to see everyone soon.

DeColores, Robert J Lauricella
Lay Director, Trenton Cursillo

OCTOBER, 2021 NATIONAL NEWSLETTER

The October, 2021 National Newsletter is available and includes an article on the history of the Cursillo Movement. You can find this informative article and the entire newsletter AT THIS LINK.

CURSILLO IN THE TRENTON MONITOR

You can read a recent article about Trenton Cursillo "New leaders eager to continue mission of Cursillo movement in Diocese" from the October issue of the Trenton Monitor AT THIS LINK. 

Pictures from the Installation of Robert Lauricella and Bob Morris can be found at the Trenton Monitor site AT THIS LINK.

A MESSAGE FROM ROBERT LAURICELLA, LAY DIRECTOR

DeColores Cursillistas,

I am currently on retreat. As I make my retreat, I have you all in my prayers.

The word "joyful" came to me. I am joyful that our Lord chose me out of his flock to be Lay Director of the Trenton Cursllio movement.

I always go back to my first weekend Trenton 116. I felt the Lord calling me back then, saying "I need you to tend to my sheep and carry my flock.”

The journey that I am on with all of you is a great spirit filled journey. I feel everyone’s prayers and support. I pray that the Holy Spirit continues to guide us along our journey. As cursillistas please be open to the spirit as you live your fourth day. As the song goes "Come follow me, my people, and I will give you rest."

Thought of the day - Let’s talk with Jesus when we have Him in our hearts after communion. Think of how much you wanted to tell him in the privacy of that moment. Listen to the voice of Jesus. Ask for a grateful heart and live all day in union with Jesus.

DeColores, Robert J. Lauricella
Lay Director, Trenton Cursillo

A MESSAGE FROM ROBERT LAURICELLA, LAY DIRECTOR

Dear Cursillistas,


My heart is full of gratitude. I thank everyone in the community for supporting me and Bob in our installation Mass. Friday’s Mass was so Spirit led. A lot went into in preparing that Mass.

In these troubled times we are living in please stay focused on Christ. Christ be our light. He is our hope and he is our joy.

DeColores, Robert Lauricella, Lay Director 

Please remember School of Leaders is this coming Friday 7pm at Visitation Church 

Secretariat is at 6:15 pm

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR NEW LEADERS

Congratulations and Blessings to our:

New Lay Director, Robert Lauricella

New Assistant Lay Director and 
Director of the School Of Leaders, Bob Morris

Newest Past Lay Director, Kathy Tucker

God Bless You All! And Thank You for Your YES to God!

A NOTE FROM KATHY TUCKER, LAY DIRECTOR

Just wanted to make the announcement to the community that Robert Lauricella agreed to be the new Lay Director and Bob Morris agreed to be the Assistant Lay Director.

Congratulations to both of you well deserved! Prayers to the Holy Spirit that they may guided in their journey!

The Installation Mass will be at Saint Mary’s @7 PM on Friday, September 10, 2021 in Middletown, NJ.

Peace, Kathy  


A NOTE FROM ROBERT LAURICELLA, OUR NEXT LAY DIRECTOR

Dear Cursillistas,

I am filled with gratitude and many other mixed emotions at this time. I am grateful to our Lord Jesus for the faith that I have and for the Love which he embraces me with. 

As your incoming New Lay Director, I am looking forward to working with everyone in Cursillo.

My journey has been a good spiritual one. The Holy Spirit is so profound in my life guiding me and leading me each and everyday.

I need everyone's support at this time .. know that I love my brothers and sisters in Christ.

DeColores, Robert Lauricella

JUNE NATIONAL NEWSLETTER AVAILABLE

The June National Cursillo Newsletter is available.Additional information on the upcoming National Encounter is on the flyer's last page. The Encounter will be held virtually on July 23 and 24, 2021.

A NOTE FROM KATHY TUCKER, LAY DIRECTOR

To All My Brother's, I want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Happy Father's Day!!


Father's Day can hold many emotions for both men and women - those who had a loving father that passed away, those who never knew their dad, those expectantly waiting to become a dad soon, and countless other situations surrounding the father-child relationship. God can use this special day to draw us closer to Himself - the one true Father who remains faithful and full of unconditonal love. Use Father's Day prayers to bring God's peace and glory into your home and life today.


Friday nights SOL was a wonderful night of receiving Love in our hearts for each other. Father Ed and Rick Klarmann gave us such beautiful and emotional talks. 


I say to all tune in to SOL, be present it is well worth your time, to stay spiritualy connected to Cursillo!!


God Bless You All, Remember treat each other with Love.


Your Humble Servant, Kathy Tucker

 

BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST by DEACON TONY MARTUCCI

Have you ever been an eyewitness to a miracle? A miracle is: a wonder; a marvel; an extraordinary event in the physical world that surpasses all known human or natural powers and is attributed to a supernatural cause; such an effect or event manifesting or considered as a work of God.

Every Sunday we all witness a miracle taking place at Mass. In fact miracles occur on a regular basis each day that Mass is celebrated. The priest takes the bread and wine which are offered in our name and he says the words of consecration, just as Jesus did at the Last Supper. The bread and wine retain all of their appearances but they are turned into the living Body and Blood of Christ in what is called transubstantiation. 

Today, most Protestant faiths believe that Eucharist is symbolic and not really Jesus’ Body and Blood. In fact, nearly 37% of Catholics who are questioned do not believe that they really receive Jesus in Communion. Christ’s real presence is a core belief of our Catholic faith and it is not open to debate. The Eucharist has been passed down to us from the Apostles. Saint Paul often referred to the true presence of Christ in his letters to the Churches as early as 40 years after Christ’s death. For example in his letter to the Corinthians St Paul said: “Is not the cup of blessing which we bless a sharing in the blood of Christ? Is not the bread which we break a sharing in the body of Christ?” 1 Cor. 10:16

In 750 AD at the Church of St. Francis “A monastic priest doubted whether the Body of Our Lord was truly present in the consecrated Host. He celebrated Mass and when he said the words of consecration, he saw the host turn into Flesh and the wine turn into Blood. Everyone present at the Mass witnessed the miracle. The Flesh is still intact today over 1200 years later and the Blood is divided into five unequal parts and held in a Monstrance in Lanciano, Italy.

In 1970, the Archbishop of Lanciano. Italy and the Provincial Superior of the Conventual Franciscans at Abruzzo, received approval from Rome to allow Dr. Edward Linoli, director of the hospital in Arezzo and professor of anatomy, chemistry, and clinical microscopy, to perform a thorough scientific examination on the relics of the miracle.

On March 4, 1971, the professor presented a detailed report of the various studies carried out. Here are the basic results:

1. The “miraculous Flesh" is authentic flesh consisting of muscular tissue of the heart.
2. The “miraculous Blood" is truly human blood A-B – the same blood type found on the Shroud of Turin and the type most characteristic of Middle Eastern populations.
3. The immunological study shows concretely that the flesh and the blood are human.

In 1973, the chief Advisory Board of the World Health Organization of the UN appointed a scientific commission to corroborate Linoli’s findings. Their work lasted 15 months and included 500 tests. It verified that the 1200 year old fragments taken from Lanciano could in no way be likened to embalmed tissue. The commission declared the fragment of flesh to be living tissue. Their reply fully upheld Professor Linoli’s conclusions. In Dec. 1976 in New York and Geneva, the report declared that “science has come to a halt, face to face with the impossibility of explaining the miracle.”

When you and I receive Christ in Holy Communion, may we recognize the miracle that we celebrate today! Let us receive Jesus with the awe, respect and humility that is due to the Son of God. After receiving, take time to give Him thanks and praise for choosing us to share His life.

DIVINELY LED by JANET F. MOSCUZZA

Opening Prayer: Almighty and eternal God, you have created all things according to Your plan from before the beginning of time. I pray You help me receive Your graces and respond to the challenges before me. May all that I do serve You and give You glory. Amen

When you reminisce about your life, aren’t there a mixture of both joyful and sorrowful memories that flow through your mind?

A few weeks ago I had a conversation with George Chemali. George is a Cursillista who is studying for the Deaconate. George was infected with the Corona Virus at the beginning of February. Shortly thereafter George’s wife Julianna was also infected. George is a special case since he has very bad Asthma and unfortunately the infection has really debilitated him. I speak to you tonight of George because it is amazing to see George’s take on what has happened to him.

George has only gratitude for his situation. He sees his illness as a way of furthering his ministry. He believes he can minister to our congregation because he knows first hand what surviving a setback can do to a person’s life and family. He believes that his experiences will make him a better Deacon and able to serve our parish. Amazing Eh?

The expression “In the Grand Scheme of Things” refers to the idea that there is divine providence working in our lives. We Catholics refer to “Let go and Let God” or “Give it Over to God. When we see coincides in our lives that we might refer to as “miracles” are we not saying there has to have been some divine intervention for this event? But when our lives are falling apart, do we ever think that there is some divine providence in those events also?

No one understood this enigma like the Apostle Paul (2 Corinthians 11:23-17) who speaks of his “far more imprisonments, far worse beatings, and numerous brushes with death. Five times …. I received forth lashes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, I passed a night and a day on the deep … in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my own race, dangers from Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers at sea, dangers among false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many sleepless nights, through hunger and thirst, through frequent fastings, through cold and exposure.”

Well, who can outdo that catalog of afflictions? Yet, despite all those terrible ordeals, it is the same Saint Paul who declares in Romans 8:35-39: “What will separate us from the love of Christ?” Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life … no present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Through the troubles that befall us, the Divine makes us realize that there is something greater at work in our lives than our problems. Can we ponder that the problems that are plaguing us today, are a way for us to grow or change our lives and that too is maybe part of some Divine Plan?

Saint Claude imagines the Lord saying: “Let Me manage your affairs and look after your interests. I know better what you need as opposed to what you want. If I paid heed to what you think you need, you would have been ruined long ago.”     

Spiritual writer Jesuit Father Jean Baptiste Saint-Jure says: “What the Divine ordains in us and for us is suited to our strength and capabilities, so that everything may serve to our advantage and perfection if we but cooperate with the designs of HIS providence. Basically, he is saying: “Move over and get out of God’s way.”

How can we get out of God’s way?

1. Count your blessings every day – perhaps there are many positive things going on at the same time your life seems to be falling apart.

2. Meditate, visit the Adoration Chapel and pray (especially the Rosary) to alleviate stress.

3. Your life needs to be a balance of work, relaxation, play and sleep.

4. Turn to friends, family, or clergy for consolation.

5. Keep an ongoing dialogue with God. Ask God what He wants you to do?

I will leave you with my favorite small antidote called When Your Hut’s on Fire:

The only survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him. Every day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming. Exhausted, he eventually managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect him from the elements, and to store his few possessions. One day, after scavenging for food, he arrives home to find his little hut in flames, with smoke rolling up to the sky. He felt the worst had happened and everything was lost. He was stunned with disbelief, grief and anger. He cried out: “God how could you do this to me?” Early the next day he was awakened by the sound of a ship approaching the island. It had come to rescue him. The weary man asked his rescuers: “how did you know I was here?” They replied: “we saw your smoke signal”.

The morale of this story is: “It’s easy to get discouraged when things are going badly, but we shouldn’t lose heart because God is at work in our lives, even in the midst of pain and suffering. Remember that the next time your hut seems to be burning to the ground. It just may be a smoke signal that summons the Grace of God.

My own experience many years ago of God’s intervention in my life was when I was living in Middletown and teaching on Staten Island for 15 years. I was excessed from my school and transferred to the High School I attended in Brooklyn. This was not only a financial burden (crossing two bridges) but emotionally I had to leave my friends and support system at the school at which I was teaching for so many years. I can remember driving there on my first day crying as I was crossing the bridge asking God “why have you done this to me?” I was miserable. Little did I know that 6 months later my mother would be confined to a hospital in Brooklyn and because I was working in Brooklyn, I could spend precious time with my mother everyday she was in the hospital. It also allowed me to oversee my mother’s treatment and share this responsibility with my sister. Interestingly, 6 months after my mother passed away, I was transferred back to my home school on Staten Island.

Can you think of any event in your life that has been influenced by the providence of the Divine?

In Addition:

Prayer to the Holy Spirit: Desiring the Spirit “Thirst”

You need to be constantly recharged by the power of the Spirit of God. Commune with God in quiet times until the life from God, the Divine life, by that very contact, flows into your being and revives your fainting spirit. When weary, take time out and rest. Rest and gain power and strength from God and then you will be ready to meet whatever opportunities come your way. Rest. Allowing every care and worry and fear to be enveloped by grace, then the tide of peace and serenity, love and joy will flow into your consciousness even in the midst of suffering. (2 Cor. 2:3-7)

Earlier this week I watched an interview of Yusef Salaam. He spent 7 years in prison for a crime he did not commit. If you remember the news he was part of the story and as member of a group that was called the Central Park 5. In this interview he was advertising his new book called “Better not Bitter”. He is of the belief that everyone’s life has a purpose. His was going to jail for a crime he did not commit. He came away believing that if you could change anything in your past, then you will change everything in your present. He believed that he is where he needs to be today. His statement “you cannot testify until you have been tested”, struck me to my core. His last statement in the interview when the interviewer asked him if going to prison was a good thing, he said “No, but God restores what was taken from you 10,000 times more than what was taken from you.”

In a passage I read in the Novena to the Holy Spirit sums up my message: “Romans 5:3-5: More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

Closing Prayer: Lord, I praise you not only for the blessings of my live, but for the many ways that you have turned sorrow to joy and weakness into strength. You have promised to be with us always, and your constant presence benefits us in ways that become clear only with time. I pray especially in gratitude for the gift of faith, something I could never have constructed or maintained on my own.

God bless you all.

FROM OUR ARCHIVE: ACTION by RICK AND LISA KLARMANN

In Piety, our whole life is directed to God; study helps up establish a better relationship with God, and to come to know His will for us.  Action is the exercising of our mind, will and senses—basically doing something.  However, in the life of the Christian, our action has Jesus Christ as the focus or reason we do a thing—the things we do and say—our actions are a consequence of being Christian.

Apostolic Action takes Christian action a step further.  Apostolic Action is exercising the power of Love; love of God and love of neighbor to bring them closer to Christ.  Apostolic Action is important to us.  James reminds us that faith without works is dead.  

If a brother or sister has nothing to wear and has no food for the day, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well,” but you do not give them the necessities of the body, what good is it?  So also faith of itself, if it does not have works, is dead.  [James 2:15-16]

• On Ash Wednesday, in the Best Lent Ever, Matthew Kelly reminds us that as Christians we are called to act in the world; not to be spectators.  We are called to take action—to take bold action—to be involved, to be engaged in the life of our culture and our country.

• Matthew reminds us that it is easy to get distracted by all of the things that we have little to no control over and that we can’t influence.  When we get caught up or discouraged by the things that are outside of our control or influence, we often wander away from what Matthew calls our ‘sweet spot.’  That place in our lives where we can have the most impact.  

How often have you heard the phrase, “Walk the talk and not merely talk the talk?” Apostolic action or to be apostles means living in Grace so that God can work through us to bring others to Himself.

“You did not choose Me, but I chose you, and appointed you, that you should go and bear much fruit.” [John 15:16]

Finally, Apostolic Action is essential to the Church

If we don’t act, the Church is not able to carry out its mission to, “Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature.” [Mark 16:15]  

How do we participate in the Church’s mission to ‘proclaim the Gospel to every creature’?  Does that scare you?  

It’s hard for me to recognize my Action.  I believe my action is something that just flows from who I am. For me, I can see moments when I have been Christlike in my actions, attitudes, and thoughts.  But until they become intentional, I’m not sure they are necessarily apostolic in nature.  

On the weekend, we learned that for our action to be apostolic it needs to be more than just being kind or considerate towards our neighbors.  A non-Christian and non-believer can perform good deeds.  To clothe the naked, feed the hungry, visit the sick or in prison are all good things, but if we fail to introduce them to Jesus, we have missed the punch line.  Remember, “The deeds you do may be the only sermon some persons will hear today” ― St. Francis Of Assisi.

On the weekend we learned about the qualities of Action:

• Rational – we need to employ our mind.  We need to have a plan of action.

• Resolute – our apostolic action needs to be bold, decisive, intentional.

Part of our Lent, we are praying for the conversion of poor sinners. I believe we need to go after the most influential who are doing the most damage. First, what comes to mind are those who lead Catholics in the wrong direction. Especially, but not limited to, those who are in positions of power and profess to be Catholic, while advocating falsehoods and immorality, leading Catholics to believe this is somehow the "New Catholicism."  "LOVE YOUR ENEMIES LENT" goes for 40 days, starting on Ash Wednesday and going until April 15 (Day 54). We will name a person each day and keep a running list. I encourage you to keep a notebook, and record each name, and pray over that notebook each day.  Let's ask God to convert these poor sinners!!!  

• Enthusiastic – our apostolic action needs to be enthusiastic.

• Constant – it is ongoing.  We need to look for opportunities.  We must avoid discouragement. 

I can read or hear about the laws being proposed or signed into law that are anti-life.  Laws that promote the killing of unborn children and even infanticide.

After attending the March for Life in Washington DC, we woke to the news about the law being proposed in New York that was to make New York the abortion capital.  It was disheartening to hear about the law being voted on in New York that would expand the killing of infants and the planned celebration by the supposedly Catholic Governor.  

It was a cold morning, but we knew that no matter how cold it was we had to attend the NJ Right to Life Rally in Trenton.  We couldn’t tell the legislators of New York how we stood on abortion but by attending the NJ Right to Life rally we could show our support to any NJ Legislators that happened to walk by.

After hearing about the bill in New York state, I was a little discouraged and had to be reminded that the final battle is already won—Jesus wins.  

• Supernatural – trust in God

It is His Grace, living in us, that helps us live out our Baptism; which in turn, helps to nurture the seed planted in their soul.  People want to see it in you before they will want to hear it from you.  

We know that our Apostolic Action is accomplished with Christ because our life in Grace and our prayer help us to trust that He is beside us.  “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff comfort me.” [Psalm 23:4]   

• Apostolic – everything we do, we do for the Lord, not for our own glory.
Jesus sent His Apostles, now He sends you and me to love and serve our neighbor through our Apostolic Action.  As the Father has sent Me, so I send you.” [John 20:21]

From the Cursillo perspective we all know the answer; we are called to proclaim the Gospel to those we meet in our moveable square meter by making a friend, becoming friends, and making them friends with Jesus.

• Make a friend.  Probably the easiest step.  All it takes is the will to take the first step; to introduce yourself.  It is important that we are looking for them, don’t expect them to be looking for you. 

• Becoming a friend.  Live a true, Christlike life.  Be interested in knowing them—what they believe and what they are interested in.

• Making them a friend of Jesus.  This final step is not accomplished unless it is done for Christ, with Christ, in Christ and like Christ.  Our Apostolic Action must be focused on Jesus; we desire that others love Jesus, and we are not worried whether or not they love us.    

We need to be open to and look for opportunities.

Recently, on our flight to California, I was sitting next to a gentleman that appeared Asian.  I noticed the book he was reading and writing in looked like a bible.  When the opportunity presented itself, I introduced myself to him and asked him if the book was a bible.  It was a bible, in Korean and English.  We talked for a few minutes.  I learned that he was returning home to California.  He had been teaching bible studies to Spanish-speaking people in north Jersey.  He said that he goes to New Jersey several times a year to teach.  When I told him that I was Catholic, he shared that his parents were Catholic, and he was raised Catholic, until in his words, “I got saved.”  

I wasn’t ready for the “Catholic until I got saved” comment.  I spoke with him a little more sharing my faith but felt insecure and inadequate to ask why left his Catholic faith.  After landing we both wished each other a safe trip and a blessed day.  But I felt like I missed an opportunity to share deeper.

As a couple, we complement one another.  We need each other’s support to get out of our own way.

Recently, after the birth of their second daughter, our son let us know that he might need some financial help.  Richard’s response was, “If he needed help, he would ask”.  Similarly, our niece who has asked for financial help in the past, indicated that they were having financial issues.  When we hadn’t heard from her for several weeks, Richard felt we should reach out to her.  For my part, I wanted Richard to reach out to our son and see if he needed help.  I was more willing to help our son than our niece, while Richard was more willing to reach out to our niece.

Sometimes our feelings and attitudes can get in the way; but together we can be open to all the opportunities that present themselves in our lives.  Maybe that’s why Jesus sent the disciples out in twos—to support each other; to be strength to the other when they are tired or worn down; and in our case, to reveal the attitudes that may get in the way of our being Christ to someone else.  

We also need to be prepared for successes as well as failures; sometimes people will be open for the message of the Gospel and there will be times that people are not willing to hear the Good News.  There will be times that you may see success in your apostolic action but there are times you may not.  As St. Mother Theresa of Calcutta said, “God does not call us to be successful; He calls us to be faithful.”

Our oldest son grew up Catholic, and got married in the Catholic Church, but ever since he and his wife have not had anything to do with God or the church.  When asked about Baptizing their first daughter, they said that they would let her choose.   Now, they have two daughters and all we can do is love them and pray that God works in their lives.  I’m sure there were things we could have said or done differently, but you can’t worry about what was, only what happens from now on.  We pray and hope and try to be an example of Jesus Christ in the world.  

Sometimes that is all you can do.  Remember, you may be the only bible that someone ever reads or hears.  Let me leave you with one last thought from Matthew Kelly:

“Go out tomorrow and create one Holy Moment.  Just one Holy Moment.  Not a holy day, not a holy hour, not a holy fifteen minutes, just one single Holy Moment.”  

A holy moment is a moment where you set aside self-interest, you set aside self-will, you set aside what you want to do and you just do exactly what you feel God calling you to do in that moment.

FROM OUR ARCHIVE: LIVING THE CURSILLO METHOD DURING THE PANDEMIC by BILL GRIPPO, FORMER LAY DIRECTOR

DeColores,

Recently I had the wonderful weekly opportunity to share with Al Martella and a regular group of men who have been on a conference call weekly since the Pandemic began.  It is truly enriching.

Today Al asked each of us to share how we are coping with the pandemic personally!  The responses were heartfelt, emotional, personal and prayerful.

I was the last speaker, the clean up “batter” so to speak.

I based my thoughts on the Tripod (Piety, Study and Action)

My first step in coping with this is to continue and strengthen my own prayer life… I attend 2 weekday Masses and one on Sunday and made myself useful by assisting the Church team in organizing the return to Church effort.  I start my day with morning prayer, and do a good amount of spiritual reading.  I try to go out of the house and sit in a park, by the complex pool or outside of Dunkin Donuts (cannot give up that first Cup!!)  I am reading the biography of John Paul 2!  It is 1000 pages and I read it as spiritual reading and Study.  His life is amazing, inspirational and gives me strength and guidance!  That first step of Piety is an absolute in handling this pandemic for me personally.

The next step for me is the discipline and a study of my own physical and mental health.  I have made a significant effort to improve my health at my Baby Boomer age.  I made the commitment to lose some excess pounds and lost 10 to date. I have visited my physician for a check up and she was really happy with the results of the visit. I have committed along with my daily reading and spiritual growth to do some form of exercise “daily”, walking a measured distance or swimming and some light weight lifting.  The benefit of exercise is extremely helpful for your mental and emotional state during this very stressful time in our lives.  I find that if I watch too much TV, especially during the day it encourages depression to occur over this pandemic.  Shut or limit the TV!!  Use the sun that God gave us to energize yourself, the Vitamin D is significant in building up the immune system in your body and it is “free”!!


The final point I made in my witness is Action!  I take action with my family, checking in with them and preparing meals for the more local siblings!  I find being present, social distancing with a backyard picnic or just sitting around a fire pit are simple ways to promote family life.  I also find that preparing and delivering a bowl of Italian meatballs lifts everyone’s spirits very high.

I have also remained very active in my community without meeting with people in large groups.  I attend zoom meetings, raise money for the food bank, continue to develop plans for a YMCA in my community and I keep my finger in the life of our school system.  Reaching out to others in whatever way you can will take your thoughts off yourself and put your energy with others!

 

So let’s close, thanking God daily for all of our gifts and family.  Let’s continue our daily prayer and study, while taking care of our health to the best of our ability!

 

DeColores and as Bishop Sheen would close: GOD LOVE YOU!!!!


REFLECTION ON THE SECOND SUNDAY IN LENT by DEACON TONY MARTUCCI

The Temple in Jerusalem was the heart and soul of the Jewish people. Inside was a room called the Holy of Holies. Once a year the High Priest could enter and offer sacrifice. A large curtain hung from the ceiling to the floor at the entrance. Inside was the Arc of the Covenant which the Hebrews carried with them from Egypt. It contained the rod of Moses, the tablets of the Ten Commandments and some manna from the desert: reminders of God’s presence among them.

On the day Jesus visited, He found merchants in the court outside the Temple selling doves, pigeons, and lambs to the worshipers who came to offer sacrifice. They could not use Roman coins at the Temple, so there were bankers, money changers, who would exchange shekels for the Roman money, for a fee. They polluted the Temple with earthly matters. Rather than a place of worship and encountering God, the Temple had become big business for the Priests. The merchants and Priests profaned what God made holy. This is why Christ became so passionate.

Today, we too are temples of God. Christ lives within us. This is especially true when we receive the Eucharist. St Augustine says. “You have made us for Yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.” Have we polluted our temples with worldly goods and desires? Is God truly number one in our lives, or do we just call upon Him for an hour on Sunday, or when we need something?

As we continue our Lenten journey, let’s take time to reflect on what is important in our lives and FAST from those things that separate us from Christ.