My Dear Parishioners,
Happy New Year! Today we honor Mary as the Mother of God and also our Mother. She holds a special place in heaven and in the Church. Her yes to God teaches all of us of our need to say yes to God. Her perseverance in spite of difficulty and obstacles is a witness of strength to us all. She also loves us as a mother and wants to comfort her children. We should go to her often and she will lead us to her Son, Jesus.
I hope that you had a joyous celebration of Christmas and the New Year. I also want to thank all those who made our celebrations as beautiful as they were. I especially want to thank all our musicians, vocalists and all those in the Music Ministry for adding such splendor and solemnity to our celebrations. Maria Lennon, our Music Director has once again done a great job. I also want to thank our altar servers for assisting at the altar, our Lectors and Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion for bringing such dignity to our worship. I also want to thank our Altar Society (all those who care for the altar by washing the linens also providing, caring for, and watering the plants and flowers). I especially want to thank those who regularly help to clean and decorate our church, especially Mrs. Carla Venditti, Mrs. Karen Baranowski and their team of helpers. Your work has truly beautified this sacred space. Thanks also to those who contributed to our “Christmas Flowers” collection. You and your loved ones are remembered in prayer throughout the season. Now is also a good time to thank those that operate “behind the scenes,” by seeing to it that our weekend celebrations run smoothly. This list also includes our ushers, sacristans, collection counters, and the “Scrip Sellers” in support of our school.
The list of volunteers and those to thank extends beyond our Sunday celebration. I want to also thank all those who work in the formation and education of the people at St. Joseph. This includes the superb faculty, staff and volunteers at St. Joseph/St. Robert School, in the CCD program and Adult Faith Formation, those in Youth Ministry, and RCIA. I also appreciate the parish nurses and those associated with the Health and Help Ministry, VINE Group, and St. Joseph HOPE committee, Food for the Poor, and the rectory volunteers. Thank you for all you do to make St. Joseph a loving and hospitable place. I am grateful to all those who assist with the running of the parish facility including our rectory and maintenance staff. I ask all these volunteers to pick up a small token of our appreciation from classroom 18. You have the option of a pen and flashlight keychain set engraved for our 100th Anniversary, or you may have another Anniversary mug. If you are not sure if your “volunteering” qualifies, please presume positive, and take a gift with our gratitude.
Finally I want to take the opportunity to gratefully acknowledge all of the kindnesses, gifts, and food sent to the parish and to me personally over the past few weeks. Your care and concern are truly the heart of this parish. I also want to thank you for your support of our Christmas collection. We do not have the final tallies yet, but that collection remains one of the most important ones in helping us meet our financial obligations throughout the year. Thank you for your sacrifices on behalf of our parish.
God Bless You!