"THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME"
UPDATED DIRECTIVES DURING THE COVID19 PANDEMIC
Effective May 25, 2021
Given the reinstatement by the Bishops of NJ of the obligation to attend Sunday Mass and the lessening of restrictions from the state, the following is provided as an immediate update to the May 4 directives.
Effective May 28, masks will no longer be required for fully vaccinated persons. If not fully vaccinated, persons are strongly encouraged to follow CDC guidance and wear a face mask in public settings. Masks are still required on public transit and in health care settings, prisons, child-care facilities and schools, among other places. People will no longer be required to socially distance indoors or outdoors, (May 28), although unvaccinated persons should continue to maintain a safe distance from others.
Effective June 4, all indoor gathering limits will be removed.
Although these directives represent a reduction of pandemic restrictions, the local pastors/administrators/chaplains can impose stricter regulations as needed. These may include wearing masks, social distancing, and signing in for Mass or activities. These directives apply to all indoor and outdoor events.
Cardinal Tobin and the Bishops of New Jersey are reinstating the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation effective June 5/6, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. To read the official statement, please visit: https://www.rcan.org/
Parishioners should be made aware of the reinstatement of the obligation.
Churches and parish facilities may return to 100 per cent capacity with no social distancing for both indoor and outdoor services and activities, as of June 4, 2021.
Parishioners should be informed that if they are vaccinated, they are no longer required to wear a mask. It is not required for parishioners to show proof of vaccination.Anyone not fully vaccinated should wear a mask.
Any vaccinated person preferring to wear a mask should feel free to do so.
Churches and meeting spaces should continue to be sanitized after each liturgy, event or meeting.
For more safety information: https://nj.gov/governor/news/news/562021/approved/20210503b.shtml
On the day of Divine Mercy, we will have an opportunity to receive partial or plenary indulgences.
In general, the gaining of indulgences requires certain prescribed conditions, and the performance of certain prescribed works.
To gain indulgences, whether plenary or partial, it is necessary that the faithful be in the state of grace at least at the time the indulgence work is completed. [Thus, one must be a Catholic in communion with the Pope, i.e. not excommunicated or in schism.]
A plenary indulgence can be gained only once a day. In order to obtain it, the faithful must, in addition to being in the state of grace:
- have the interior disposition of complete detachment from sin, even venial sin;
- have sacramentally confessed their sins;
- receive the Holy Eucharist (it is certainly better to receive it while participating in Holy Mass, but for the indulgence only Holy Communion is required);
- pray for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff (Pope).
It is appropriate, but not necessary, that the sacramental Confession and especially Holy Communion and the prayer for the Pope's intentions take place on the same day that the indulgenced work is performed; but it is sufficient that these sacred rites and prayers be carried out within several days (about 20) before or after the indulgenced act. Prayer for the Pope's intentions is left to the choice of the faithful, but an "Our Father" and a "Hail Mary" are suggested. One sacra- mental Confession suffices for several plenary indulgences, but a separate Holy Communion and a separate prayer for the Holy Father's intentions are required for each plenary indulgence.
For the sake of those legitimately impeded, confessors can commute both the work prescribed and the conditions requi- red (except, obviously, detachment from even venial sin).
Indulgences can always be applied either to oneself or to the souls of the deceased, but they cannot be applied to other persons living on earth.
The time for fulfilling the Paschal Precept (Easter Duty*) extends from the First Sunday of Lent, March 6 , 2022 to The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity June 5, 2022. * Canon 920, §1.All the faithful, after they have been initiated into the Most Holy Eucharist, are bound by the obligation of receiving Communion at least once a year.
Our parish is now registered with https://smile.amazon.com The AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price from your eligible smile.amazon.com purchases. Tens of millions of products are eligible for donations. You will see eligible products marked “Eligible for AmazonSmile donation” on their smile.amazon.com product detail pages. Recurring Subscribe & Save purchases and subscription renewals are not currently eligible to gen- erate donations. Remember, only purchases made at smile.amazon.com, (not www.amazon.com or the mobile app,) generate AmazonSmile donations. Select St. Theresa of the Child Jesus Parish as the supporting organization.
ADORATION OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT
Monday 7:30pm-9:00pm (church)
Wednesday 7:30pm-9:00pm (church)
Friday 7:30am-6:00pm (churchl)
By God's goodness and compassion, the doors of His kingdom have been opened to all who have faith, Jew or Gentile. That's the good news Paul and Barnabas proclaim in today's First Reading. With the coming of the Church—the new Jerusalem John sees in today's Second Reading—God is “making all things new.”
That's the good news Paul and Barnabas proclaim in today's First Reading. With the coming of the Church— the new Jerusalem John sees in today's Second Reading—God is “making all things new.” Where does God dwell? God dwells in Jerusalem. Where in Jerusalem? In the Temple. And with what stones did God build his new Temple? Saint Peter says with the living stones of the saints, that chosen race and royal priesthood (1 Pet. 2:5-9). Saint Paul says these living stones are the members of the household of God, “built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple.” “In Christ,” Paul says, “you are also being built together into the dwelling place for God”.
In His Church, the “old order” of death is passing away and God for all time is making His dwelling with the human race, so that all peoples “will be His people and God Himself will always be with them.” In this the promises made through His prophets are accomplished.
The Church is “the kingdom for all ages” that we sing of in today's Psalm. That's why we see the Apostles, under the guidance of the Spirit, ordaining “presbyters” or priests. Anointed priests and bishops will be the Apostles' successors, ensuring that the Church's “dominion endures through all generations”.
Until the end of time, the Church will declare to the world God's mighty deeds, blessing His holy name and giving Him thanks, singing of the glories of His kingdom.
In His Church, we know ourselves as His “faithful ones,” as those Jesus calls “My little children” in today's Gospel. We live by the new law, the “new commandment” that He gave in His final hours. The love He commands of us is no human love but a supernatural love. We love each other as Jesus loved us in suffering and dying for us. We love in imitation of His love.
Love isn’t easy and communion with one another is the hardest call we have in our “fallen” state, but it is communion that helps us to learn how to die even more to self. While our families are our first training ground in love, it is also love for our brothers and sisters in Christ that helps prepare us for heaven where we will dwell together in communion with the Most Holy Trinity for all eternity. We will not die and go to heaven where we get to live on our private island with our chosen family members and friends. No, we will dwell together, Lord willing, even with the people who have betrayed us, hurt us, and rejected us.
It is challenging in this culture to see Christ in one another. It is hard to draw closer together when there is so much pain in our midst. Thanks to the “fall”, many of us have a tendency to withdraw, stay quiet or scatter when situations arise that are extremely difficult to endure. It’s why all of the Apostles except for St. John abandoned Christ when His hour had come. By grace, however, we are meant to be like Our Lady and St. John enduring the horror of the Cross as Our Lord breathed His last and gave up His spirit to the Father for us.
It is love that gives us the strength to endure the deepest pain. It is love that gives us the “peace that surpasses all understanding (Phil 4:7).” It is love that makes the battles we must wage together worth fighting. Love reveals the good, the true, and the beautiful to us so that we can dwell in faith and hope. It is love that helps us to forgive when we don’t think we are able to forgive or persevere in our relationships with one another even after deep pain has been inflicted. St. Peter tells us to “let our love be unfailing for one another (1 Peter 4:8).” These are words for our times.
Nobody said this is easy, but then again, the Christian life is not easy. G. K. Chesterton said it best when he said: “The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.” Living in communion with one another as brothers and sisters is not some lofty ideal. It is a call we have been given from Our Lord Himself. He has called us to truly enter into love of one another. Not sentimentality. Not distanced, polite encounters that require little of us. Love. To enter into one another’s joys and sorrows. To come to see one another as we are and to see Christ dwelling within each one of us.
It will require sacrifice from all of us. We may be asked to wage battles — spiritual or physical — for one another. It will mean pain. Why? Love always costs something. It requires us being open and vulnerable to being hurt by other “fallen” people. There will be times we will have disagreements and fights, but if we dwell in the love of Christ and love for one another then we will be able to work through those difficulties. It will above all else require our willingness to forgive again and again.
This doesn’t mean that we don’t carry those hurts from one another. We will and we do. It means that in order to move forward someone has to choose to forgive. Someone has to move forward in love. As Christians, we are the ones who are called to forgive. Loving others means forgiving.
This kind of love is only made possible by the Spirit poured into our hearts at Baptism (see Romans 5:5), renewed in the sacrifice His priests offer in every Mass. By our love we glorify the Father. And by our love all peoples will know that we are His people, that He is our God.
Have a blessed and peaceful day!
Almighty and eternal God, you have so exalted the unbreakable bond of marriage that it has become a sacramental sign of your Son’s union with the Church as his spouse. Look with favor on these couples who you have united in marriage, as they ask for your help and the protection of the Virgin Mary. We pray that in good times and in bad they will grow in love for each other; that they will resolve to be of one heart in the bond of peace. Lord, in their struggles let them rejoice that you are near to help them; in their needs let them know that you are there to rescue them; in their joys let them see that you are the source and completion of every happiness. We ask this through Christ our Lord,