May 13, 2018
Seventh Sunday of Easter
THE EFFECTS OF GRACE UPON SOUL AND BODY
Dear Parishioners of Our Beloved St. Paul:
Christ is risen! He is truly risen! Praised be Jesus Christ and Mary His Most Holy Mother!
Mother’s Day: Today is Mother’s day. May God bless and reward all the mothers in our parish. A mother gives of herself completely to her family and very often in unnoticed and unseen ways. The only one of the Ten Commandments which has a blessing attached to it is the Fourth Commandment – Honor thy father and thy mother.
A mother is a person who receives a child into her own flesh, providing for him the stuff of his own body. And yet, the Christian mother is called to more: to receive the child in Christ’s name.
So many of the saints of the Church were mothers who exemplified the beatitudes. St. Elizabeth of Portugal was a peace maker. She rode out between the warring armies of her husband and son and restored peace. St. Matilda meekly removed herself from her own home rather than stir up her son’s anger. St. Margaret Clitherow, on the eve of her brutal martyrdom, sent her shoes to her daughter with the clear message, follow my path. St. Monica relentlessly prayed for her son St. Augustine to return to the Church. Augustine wrote in his Confessions, “She wept more for me than mothers weep over their children’s dead bodies.” May these saints who were mothers ever intercede for our dear mothers!
Please be sure to enroll your mothers in the Mother’s Day Novena of Masses.
Marian Guild and Knights of Columbus Communion Breakfast: Sunday, May 20th will be the Marian Guild Communion Breakfast. The members of the guild and the knights, who are so devoted to the parish, will attend the 9.30 Mass. Afterwards there will be breakfast in Monsignor Costa Hall. Our guest speak is Monsignor James M. McDonald the Pastor of St. Aidan, Williston Park.
Days of Grace: The days between Ascension Thursday and Pentecost Sunday are among the most holy of the Church’s Year of Grace. They are the days which, in fact, constituted the first novena ever prayed in the Church.
The Apostles gathered with our Blessed Mother, who is also Mother of the Church, from Ascension Day until Pentecost. Our Lady consoled them on the physical absence of our Risen Savior. At the end of the nine days the Holy Spirit was poured forth upon the earth to bring it to life with warmth and grace. The Holy Spirit is the Sanctifier and renews the face of the earth.
Francisca Javiera del Vale was a Mexican laywoman who died in Mexico City during the 1950’s. After her death her profound and mystical writings were discovered. Speaking of the Holy Spirit, she wrote, You must make a firm resolution to beg the Holy Spirit to come into your soul and to live an interior life. Do not ask how much this will cost you, but rather ask how much it is worth. This has always been the case. What is worth a lot costs a lot. And what is the effort we put into knowing ourselves. When we compare it with the great benefit that we derive from it?
Beg the Holy Spirit to come into your souls and there remain forever. Grace is the very life of God in which we share. We speak of being in the state of grace. That means we are living as friends of God and have not snuffed out his life of grace through mortal sin. Grace obviously disposes us to receive even more graces. But it also has physical effects.
The great French missionary Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre did incomparable work in bringing the native peoples of Africa to the faith. He often remarked that when a village’s people had accepted baptism there was a completely different atmosphere. The village was cleaner, more serene, less noisy, and filled with peace and order. So it is also for individuals. The life of grace brings a calm, serenity, and health. It softens the features and makes one look radiant. That is why those hardened in sin appear so unhappy and coarse. In an area where large numbers of the unbaptized live, there is a coarseness and meanness in the atmosphere.
Golf and Tennis Outing and Awards Dinner: Monday, May 7th was our second annual Golf and Tennis Outing and Awards Dinner at the Nassau Club. I am particularly grateful to the Knights of Columbus who first proposed such an endeavor for our parish and to the Committee which has worked so diligently and selflessly to bring this wonderful event to fruition. Our Committee members are Don Cavanaugh (chair), Anne Maione, James and Jill Galante, Tom Principe, Chris Hein, and Paula Maturo. This dedicated group of parishioners has been working and planning for this day for well over a year. They were joined by many others, too many to be named.
On behalf of the whole parish may I extend sincere best wishes and congratulations to our honorees this year. The Monsignor Mario C. Costa Award was given to John and Joanne Schmitt who have been so dedicated in their service to our parish for so many decades. Their example of Catholic family life and devotion has been an inspiration. The Sister Regina Kraft Award was given to Brother Joseph Bellizzi, the principal of Chaminade High School and our own director of religious education (DRE). This award is given particularly to those whose dedication to our parish has been expressed in serving the youth of the parish. Brother Joe has done this in a heroic way.
It was a wonderful day and evening. The day was picture perfect in regard to the weather. The Chaminade Glee Club sang at the cocktail hour and Mr. Joe Namath, former quarterback of the New York Jets, surprised his former teammate Mr. Schmitt by spending the whole day with us. He was most gracious to everyone and never tired of having pictures taken with all who wanted one. It is a day we will always remember and I am most grateful to all of you for such a successful and beautiful occasion where we all came together as a parish family.
Come Holy Spirit, Creator, Come
From thy bright heavenly throne!
Come, take possession of our souls,
And make them all thine own!
In Jesus and Mary,
Monsignor James F. Pereda