Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of Mercy,
Holy Week has begun!
Since Ash Wednesday, we have been trying the best we can to prepare for a joyful celebration of Easter. And now we are a week away from that day. The big question for us is, Are we ready? Have we been consistent and faithful in our preparation to celebrate the day when Christ rose from the dead, conquering sin and death?
Our Gospel today recalls the story of our salvation through Jesus’ passion and death. We take this time every year to remember and to walk with Jesus as he goes step by agonizing step to Calvary . There we witness his death on the cross and his burial in the tomb.
We need to be reminded of what Jesus suffered so that we might repent and be freed of the burden of our sins. Have we truly entered this experience of sharing Jesus’ suffering and death on the cross? Have we been walking with Him during these past days of Lent?
Brothers and sisters, let us not turn away from Jesus, but let us continue to walk with him through his suffering and death, so that we may also share in the glory of his resurrection.
A beautiful way to do that is by responding to Christ’s love through sharing and extending that love to others. We do that in concrete and tangible ways, not just in words, wishes, and prayers but in action.
Many of you have been so generous with your time, talent and treasure. You have been tirelessly supporting one another in so many ways and supporting your parish. Last weekend, our Holy Name Society had a food drive to support the food pantry at Our Lady of Sorrows Parish here in Jersey City. They collected a good amount of goods and monetary donations.
Also, our young people had a service day. They prayed together first before embarking on cleaning our neighborhood and packing goods to be distributed to those in need. To help them in their project, some of you were generous in donating items that were needed for this service day. In the name of our parish community, I thank all of them and you.
I also thank all our catechists, aides, and our deacons who help Jeng and me in our religious education program. I thank also the facilitators of Appreciate the Word, Live the Word, our Lenten small group program. We are blessed to have you in our community, sharing your gifts, especially the gifts of your wisdom and love. By doing so, you assist those striving to advance and grow in their spiritual life. Everything you do will be rewarded by God because you allow the Lord to use you to help his people pursue holiness in life and to be saved in Christ Jesus our Lord. So many of you have been so good in helping your entire parish community.
As we contemplate the passion, death, and resurrection of Our Lord Jesus, may we receive all the blessings we need. And may you continue to be generous to your parish, as you have been before, with your Easter gifts. Thank you.
God bless you all!
“My Life, My Love, My All” – Kirk Franklin
During this Holy Week, we want to remind everyone of the loving sacrifice God made for us. Let it be a reminder that Jesus died to make us all of us one- everyone without exceptions. In that spirit, we give our lives, our love, and our all to God.
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, programs. and ministries of the Archdiocese. This year’s goal for Our Lady of Mercy Parish is $42,120. There will be a 100% rebate of every dollar collected above our goal. Currently, donors have pledged $35,721 and $23,277 has been received. Please be generous as always!
2022 LENTEN REGULATIONS
Lent is a time for prayer, fasting, and charity as we prepare to renew our baptismal promises at Easter. The practice of penance forms a necessary part of this preparation. The Church gives us the following regulations to help us make good use Lent.
1. Good Friday (April 15) is a day of Fast. This means that only one full meal is permitted. Two smaller meals may be eaten. There is no food taken between meals. Those between the ages of 18 and 59 are obliged to fast; others are encouraged to fast.
2. All the Fridays of Lent are days of Abstinence. On a Day of Abstinence, no meat may be eaten. Those 14 years of age and older are obliged to abstain from meat. For a serious reason, Church Law allows the pastor to dispense an individual from refraining from meat on a Friday during the Lenten Season.
3. The obligation to observe the laws of Fast and Abstinence “substantially” or as a whole, is a serious obligation.
4. Catholics should go to Holy Communion at least once between the First Sunday of Lent (March 6) and Trinity Sunday (June 12). If necessary, they should go to Confession. Individual confessions are heard at OLM Monday through Friday from 9 am to 9:30 am and Saturdays from 4 pm to 4:30 pm.
GOOD FRIDAY REMINDER!
This Good Friday, April 15, is day of Fast and Abstinence. A day of fast means that only one full meal is permitted. Two smaller meals may be eaten. There is no food taken between meals. Those between 18 and 59 are obliged to fast. On a Day of Abstinence, no meat may be eaten. Those 14 years of age and older are obliged to abstain from meat.