As early as five-and-a-half weeks after gestation, a baby’s heartbeat can be detected through an ultrasound. In an effort to help the mission of Lighthouse Pregnancy Resource Center, the Father Joseph A. Cassidy Knights of Columbus Council 6100 in Budd Lake recently donated an ultrasound machine that allows the first bond between a mother to see and hear the heartbeat of her unborn baby in her womb.
By using the tools of prayer, religious discernment and rational thinking, Catholics can cut through the noise of today’s ever-polarizing political climate in their quest to do the right thing: to be faithful in casting their ballots for moral and just candidates, laws and policies in the upcoming Nov. 3 election.
Attacks on houses of worship have continued all around the country over the summer and into the fall with little coverage of this vandalism on religious institutions being reported in the secular media. In September, for example, statues were toppled and destroyed at churches and cathedrals in Utah, New York and Texas. Acts of arson were suspected, investigated or determined at churches in Florida, Boston and California over the summer and statues at other churches were vandalized in Tennessee, California and Colorado.
Ministers in the Church have a special role when called to reach out to people trapped in the “dark tunnel” of pain and despair caused by mental illness: help them heal spiritually. They can do this by bringing these suffering persons the “light of Christ” and helping to fill them with hope in the truth that God and his Church love them and are ready to accompany them on their difficult journey.
Throughout the liturgical year, the faithful hear and learn about the life of Jesus every Sunday at Mass. Additionally, it is through the synoptic Gospels that the faithful receive a more complete picture of who Jesus is and of his earthly ministry. Father Cesar Jaramillo, parochial vicar at St. Peter the Apostle Parish in Parsippany, who also serves as Defender of the Bond in the Diocesan Tribunal, is leading a Bible study on Monday evenings for the Spanish-speaking community focusing on these Gospels written by Mark, Luke and Matthew also known as the Synoptic Gospels.
Imagine a day, when the fight for life is no longer necessary because all lives are fully protected from the womb until natural death. For a group of young adults — New Jersey Pro-Life Future — this is more than a future they are striving to achieve; it is a movement happening right now. The Pro-Life Future organization is an opportunity for young adults to continue working in the pro-life movement beyond their college years.
Kenneth Mullaney, diocesan general counsel for the past 14 years, credited his late parents, Ken and Betty, for “having inculcated me into the faith and thereby setting the foundation for me to become the Catholic and the Catholic lawyer I am right now,” after he had the honor of receiving the diocesan Advocati Christi Award on Oct. 4. Bishop Kevin Sweeney presented Mullaney with the award — a portrait of St. Thomas More, patron of legal professionals — after the fifth annual diocesan Red Mass at St. Paul Inside the Walls: the Diocesan Center for Evangelization in Madison on Oct. 4.
The confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett, a mother of seven children and a devout Catholic, to the Supreme Court of the United States to fill the vacancy created by the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, should be smooth sailing. After all, she is one of the most highly qualified judges in America and a more than worthy successor to Justice Ginsberg.
The Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth marked the 160th anniversary of the founding of their order with a Mass at the Motherhouse in Convent Station in Holy Family Chapel Sept. 26. Bishop Kevin Sweeney celebrated the anniversary Mass with Sisters of Charity attending following CDC guidelines by wearing masks and social distancing.
Bishop Kevin Sweeney celebrated Mass marking the World Day of Migrants and Refugees Sept. 27 at St. Joseph Parish in Lincoln Park. Every Sunday at 7 p.m., St. Joseph Parish celebrates Mass in Spanish for the migrant community. The Diocesan Migrant Ministry serves this community through pastoral work and social work.
Bishop Kevin Sweeney celebrated Mass at St. Michael the Archangel Church in Paterson Sept. 27 to honor the parish’s patron, St. Michael, whose feast day is Sept. 29 along with St. Gabriel and St. Raphael, the archangels.
On Sept. 21, 16 Spanish-speaking leaders and ministers from around the Diocese received their Leadership Certificate in Hispanic Ministry with Specialization in Evangelization. It was a three-year program, which was a collaboration between St. Paul Inside the Walls in Madison and St. Elizabeth’s University’s DePaul Center for Spirituality and Ministry in Convent Station. Bishop Sweeney, with Helen Streubert, president of St. Elizabeth University, presented the certificates in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Paterson.
Honoring the lives of two martyrs — St. Lorenzo Ruiz and St. Pedro Calungsod — from the Philippines, Filipinos from around the Diocese gathered for the annual Diocesan celebration of the Filipino Martyr Mass, which has become a tradition. The Mass was held in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Paterson Sept. 26. Bishop Kevin Sweeney was the principal celebrant of the Mass, which was concelebrated by several priests of the Diocese, including Filipino-born priests. The Diocesan Commission for Catholic Filipino Ministries (DCCFM) coordinated the Mass.
Bishop Kevin Sweeney helped the Shrine of St. Joseph in Stirling break ground on its much-anticipated St. Joseph Shrine Pilgrim Chapel on Sept. 15. It will provide a focal point of devotion for pilgrims for prayer to Jesus through the adoptive father of Jesus and contemplation of his role in Salvation history. With expected completion this spring, the 1,500-square-foot wooden chapel will feature as its centerpiece a large luminescent “Life of St. Joseph” mosaic of Joseph holding the Christ Child.
A few new faces that are greeting students returning to religious education classrooms this fall at St. Luke Parish in Long Valley represent a spiritual blast from the distant past: striking portraits of 12 saints, including some Apostles, that are giving these young people silent — yet timeless — witness to the Gospel. Emily Meehan, 18, a St. Luke parishioner, and a team of her talented friends, painted these 12 portraits in the traditional style of religious icons over the summer to complete her service project for her Gold Award — the highest honor a girl can earn in the Girl Scouts.
How do we become the people we are? Some philosophers would say that we all, eventually, ask the basic/fundamental questions: Who am I? How did I get here? Why am I here? For those of us who become serious about our faith and come to believe that Scripture and the Church can guide us to the answers to those questions, we can usually point or look back to those who taught us or who introduced us to Jesus. While it is a biological fact that none us would be (here) without our parents, so many of us come to realize that our parents were not only God’s instrument to give us the gift of life, but they were the ones who brought us to Jesus and gave us new life in Baptism.
Each month Frank Tinari edits his newsletter, “Family and Pro-Life News Briefs for Catholics” to spread awareness on the most important life issues facing the nation. His newsletter is in parish bulletins throughout the Paterson Diocese and state and on the Diocese’s website. It is also sent via email to those who request it. It features news briefs from several news sources and organizations that focus on life issues whether it be about abortion, euthanasia, embryonic stem cell research and more. The newsletter also touches upon family life issues such as natural family planning and strengthening marriage.
In our nation, there is “a new orthodoxy that is actively hostile to religion,” warned U.S. Attorney General William Barr when he spoke through a pre-recorded video at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast (NCPB) on Sept. 23 during which he accepted its Christifideles Laici Award. Named for Pope St. John Paul II’s 1988 exhortation on the lay vocation, the award honors lay Catholics who promote the New Evangelization and the Church’s mission in their life and work.