Dear Parishioners of our Beloved St. Paul:
Praised be Jesus Christ and Mary His Most Holy Mother! We have entered into the month of October which in the devotional life of the Church is the month of the Most Holy Rosary of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary. We may ask why is October the month of the Most Holy Rosary? The answer goes back to the year 1571.
In that year the forces of Islam were poised to make yet another incursion into the heart of Christian Europe. The great navy of the sultan was preparing an invasion and for the long held dream of Islam, to turn the Basilica of St. Peter into a pasture where cows would graze. All of Christian Europe was in fear as the sultan’s navy was the most powerful in the world.
Under the leadership of the pope and the Christian heads of state a Christian navy was raised under the leadership of Don Juan of Austria (the natural son of Emperor Charles V) and the great Admiral Andrea Doria (after whom the ill-fated ocean liner was named). Don Juan insisted that all his sailors confess before boarding the ships, for their enterprise was not merely military; it was the Cross against the Crescent. They would be fighting for Christ.
On Sunday October 7, 1571, the great naval battle of Lepanto was fought off the Greek coast. The Christian forces were greatly outnumbered but all the Church was praying the Holy Rosary for a great victory. The Christian forces were being decimated when suddenly the wind shifted and the sultan’s navy was destroyed upon the rocks. The great green flag with its crescent moon was captured from the flagship of the sultan by Admiral Andrea Doria. He placed it in the chapel of St. Mary Major in Rome where it may still be seen today. The pope at the time, Pope St. Pius V, saw the victory in a vision and decreed that until the end of time the Church would in thanksgiving to Our Lady of Victory keep the Feast of the Most Holy Rosary of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary on the anniversary of the battle, October 7th. And thus did October become the month of the Holy Rosary.
I would encourage all of all parishioners to pray the Rosary each day. We may say we are too busy. But we may pray the Rosary while walking, driving or exercising. There is always time to pray if we really want to. After all have we ever heard someone say I am too busy to eat that ice cream cone? We can always do what we want to do.
Our Lady will bring the true victory over ourselves. She will help us in every way. The Hail Mary will take us to heaven. Please pray the Holy Rosary.
Perhaps in your Rosary you will say a prayer for your pastor who is in such need of prayers. Please pray that I will always have the heart of Christ.
DEDICATION OF MONSIGNOR COSTA HALL: All parishioners are cordially invited to the dedication of Monsignor Costa Hall next Sunday, October 12, 2014. There will be a special Mass at 11.00AM at which Father Thomas Cardone, SM, will preach the homily. After the Mass we will all go down to the Monsignor Costa Hall for the prayers of dedication and a reception. Monsignor Costa’s family members will be present as will the Knights and Ladies of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulcher. The Knights of Columbus and Squires will also be present. All our altar servers are invited to be in the procession as are the members of the Parish Council, the Finance Council, the Trustees, the Building and Grounds Council, and the Parish Staff.
Monsignor Costa (who would have been 88 on October 12th) was the Pastor of St. Paul from 1975 until 2002. He is remembered with love and affection by all the parishioners whom he served in such a dedicated and Christ-like way. May this dedication be for us all a new beginning of serving God Our Lord as a united parish for many more years to come.
HOLY WATER FONTS: You will notice our lovely new holy water fonts at the front doors of the Church. Holy Water is a very powerful sacramental in the Church and allows us to be purified for the worship of God. The poor boxes (with attached holy water fonts) have been sent out to be refurbished, and will soon be back in our Church. Anyone who would like to give a new Holy Water Font in memory of a loved one should call the Parish Office. Anyone who would like to memorialize the cleansing and refurbishing of the poor boxes should do the same. There is a Holy Water receptacle near the confessional. Please take Holy Water to your homes and use it. Parents should bless their children with holy water and it should be sprinkled throughout the house to invoke God’s blessing and to dispel evil and discord. RETREAT DATES: Please save the dates for our annual Autumn Parish Mission. It will be on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, October 27th, 28th, and 29th. The Mission will be given by the Augustinian Canons who staff the parishes in Glen Cove. Make every effort to attend the Mission and do good to your soul. Confessions will be available all three nights. The Mission will be from 7.00pm until 8.00pm each evening. It is not too early to mark your calendar for our Advent Evening of Recollection which will be on Thursday evening December 12th at 7.30pm. Our Advent preacher will be Father Gregory Rannazzisi, S.T.L. Father Rannazzisi is the Vice-Rector of the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception. Father will present a beautiful evening of prayer before the Blessed Sacrament.
Thank you for your generosity to St. Paul’s. We depend on your goodness and may God bless and reward you.
Monsignor James F. Pereda