August 7, 2022 – From the Pastor

Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of Mercy,

Greetings in the name of Our Lord Jesus Christ!

I hope and pray that you are enjoying your relaxation and recreation time with family and/ or friends. Make the most of it because autumn is coming.

As we enjoy this summer break, I would like to reflect with you on the readings we hear this weekend.

Sometimes I think that we Christians forget that God’s promise is from ancient times. Even before the Chosen People, before Moses and Aaron, and before the Covenant based on the law, there was the promise that God made to Abraham. Because this one man had the gift of faith and believed in God’s promises to him and to his descendants, we have become heirs to something so much greater than what was originally promised.

The author of the Letter to the Hebrews tells us that in their lifetimes, Abraham and his descendants did not receive what they had been promised. But their hopes were realized through faith because God gave them “a better homeland, a heavenly homeland” a homeland which exceeded all their expectations. That is our promised inheritance as well.

In the passage from Saint Luke’s gospel, Jesus tells us that we have no need to fear, because the “Father has been pleased to give us the kingdom… and that we have an inexhaustible treasure in heaven.”

Jesus wants us to set our hearts on that treasure and not on some lesser things that will not last. The key to all of this, of course, is faith. Do we believe the promises of Jesus the way that Abraham, our father in faith, believed in God’s promises to him and to his descendants?

In the gospel passage, Jesus tells his followers a parable about a prudent, faithful steward who knew that the master was coming and so he prepared for his return.

We have been told that our Lord and Savior will be coming again. We cannot pretend to be ignorant of that fact. But are we prepared for his return? Are we living in expectation of his coming again? These are the questions that all of us must answer for ourselves. We must keep in mind Jesus’ warning to Peter, “Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more.”

Let us think about that for a moment. Let us examine where we are in our lives in light of what we are supposed to be doing as Christians.

God bless you all!

Love,

Father Marty


JOIN THE ALTAR SERVER MINISTRY

We are currently looking for additional young people to become part of our altar server ministry here in the parish. According to the guidelines of the Bishops of the United States, “Servers carry the cross, the processional candles, hold the book for the priest, carry the incense and censer, present the bread, wine, and water to the priest during the preparation of the gifts or assist him when he receives the gifts from people, wash the hands of the priest, assist the priest celebrant and deacon as necessary. Servers respond to the prayers and dialogues of the priest along with the congregation. They also join in singing the hymns and other songs of the liturgy.”

We are grateful to those who will step forward and volunteer to serve our Lord and our parish as Altar Servers. We also appreciate parents and other adults who encourage the young people in their lives to volunteer to fill this role at Mass.

Sign-up sheets are available in the vestibule of the church. You can submit the completed forms to the Parish Office or give them to Father Marty or Father Andrew. If you have any questions, please speak to one of the priests. We will soon be posting a schedule for the training sessions for those who volunteer to become Altar Servers.


REMINDER OF THE CHANGE IN OUR COLLECTION PROCEDURE

As mentioned previously, we have returned to our former way of collecting your offerings a Mass. After the Creed and General Intercessions, those at Mass are invited to come forward with their financial donations and place them in the baskets at the head of each aisle. As we come forward, we can remember that the Lord not only wants us to offer our money but to also our lives in service to Him and his Church.

Those using WESHARE, our online giving service, are welcome to join the procession of those coming forward to the baskets. If they wish, they may place a collection envelope, note, or card in the basket indicating their use of online giving.


OUR YOUNG ADULT CHOIR/MINISTRY AT OLM


Veronica Rivera, Margarette Rivera, Florence Villa, Katrina Origenes, and Tiffany Esteban, members of our Youth/Young Adult Choir/Ministry pose with Liam Barredo (Director of Music Ministries) and Krystelle Pring (Assistant Director). Anyone who might be interested in joining this musical group should speak to Liam or Krystelle after Mass.


REGISTRATION for FAITH FORMATION FOR YEAR 2022-2023 IS NOW OPEN!

The OLM Faith Formation Program is for children in from Grade 1 to Grade 8. New students must submit a copy of their baptismal certificate. Returning students must register at the beginning of each school year. Register online now at our parish website olmnj.org For inquiries, please contact Jeng Matias-Villa at 201-434-7500 ext. 102 or email her at reginavilla@olmnj.org


A POSSIBLE ROLE FOR YOU

As Christians we are to be hospitable. We are called to open ourselves and our hearts to our neighbor. When someone new walks through the doors of our church, they are making a spiritual decision. Whether they realize it or not, God is already at work in their heart inspiring them to come to OLM. As God’s people, we have the chance to show them God’s love by how we welcome them, even if only for a quick moment.

Hospitality Ministers have a special role in welcoming people to our parish. Regular tasks include the following: (1) Greet and acknowledge ALL those who enter our church. (2) Perform housecleaning after Mass such as spraying disinfectant. (3) Turn off electric votive lights after the last Mass. (4) Bring items left by churchgoers to the parish office. (5) Track number of attendees at Mass. (6) Help with the needs of churchgoers. (7) Maintain security during services. (8) Guide churchgoers during time of communion and recession .

Anyone interested in joining this ministry may contact Guiz Macalintal at 551-655-1441 or email him at themacalintals@gmail.com. You may also contact the OLM Parish Office at 201-434-7500 or email olmjcparish@olmnj.org. God Bless!


ARE YOU EXPECTING?

All Moms and Dads to be, our Baptismal Team would also like to celebrate your joy with a “Gathering To Rejoice!” Every month we have an event just for that. The team is ready to rejoice with you and to assist you as you look forward to your child’s baptism and beyond. Let us know that you are expecting by stopping by or calling the parish office at 201-434-7500.


Archbishop’s Annual Appeal

CATHOLIC STEWARDSHIP IN ACTION” is the theme of this year’s Annual Appeal of the Archdiocese of Newark. This appeal supports the mission , and ministries of the Archdiocese. This year’s goal for our parish is $42,120. There is a 100% rebate of every dollar collected above our goal. Currently, donors from OLM have pledged
$51,281 and $44,486 has been received. Please continue to be generous as always!