October 23, 2016

A STEWARD’S KEYS: Week VII

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Not Feeling OK? Pray!

Prayer is the key that sets us free to be OK. Prayer is the key that unlocks the treasure of the Good News.
What Good News?
God is giving to us and gifting us whether we feel OK or not. God is always working in us, in others and in all ways. We call this God’s Providence. Prayer is the key to discovering the hidden treasure of God in all things.

Under Oath Before God

Frank Semanski, a football great from Notre Dame in the 1940’s, was known for his great humility. He was trained at home not to brag but to tell only the truth.
One day he was called to testify in a civil case. Recognizing the star football hero the judge asked, “Semanski, just how good of a player are you?” Red of face, but without hesitation, the player answered, “The best darn center in the history of Notre Dame!”
Later, upon hearing about Semanski’s answer, his coach asked, “Did you really say that?” Swallowing hard and with his head lowered he answered, “I had to say I was the best, you see, I was under oath.”
Semanski had an honest moment reporting under oath his football skill. Honesty is at the heart of our relationship with God.
In today’s Gospel the Pharisee is busy at prayer telling God about how he is unlike sinful others but he is not aware of his honest need for God. The tax collector is honest about his need for God and so is able to pray and to receive what he needs from God. Honesty is at the heart of prayer, honesty about our gifts and about our sins, shortcomings and needs. What is Not OK? What is OK?
As Christian Stewards we “receive God’s gifts gratefully.” An honest assessment of ourselves is needed to recognize God’s gifts. Truthfulness with ourselves reveals our needs and opportunities for God to heal, forgive, empower, gift and motivate us to be faithful stewards.

A Christian Steward receives God’s gifts gratefully, cultivates them responsibly, shares them lovingly in justice with others, and returns them with increase to the Lord.

REFLECTION and PROCESS

Make some time to make an honest list of your gifts and blessings…
Take some time to make a list of areas where you need God’s help…
Prayer Key Question
OK God, what’s the Good News?

  1. Look. Be attentive. Be honest. Be aware.
  2. Identify in what way you are not OK.
  3. Pray: OK God, what’s the Good News?
  4. Reflect; look for God’s Providence. Name what’s good, gift (person, place or thing), blessing or hope in the situation.
  5. Thank God for those gifts.
  6. Decide how you will express gratitude to God through service for others. Take ACTION.

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Christian Stewards Share the Keys to the Kingdom
The hand gesture for OK, pictured above, forms an O, a circle of mutual giving as the pointer finger meets the thumb.
The burst of light symbolizes the moment in prayer when we give our thanks to God. God gives all to us (Providence) and we are invited to respond in gratitude by reaching out in love and service to others.
The three fingers extending outward toward others represent the key gifts that we share:

Time, Talent and Treasure
God Gives; We Give

A Steward is one way that Jesus uses to describe our relationship with God (Mt25:14-30, Lk12:42-48).
An oikonomos or Steward is the one in whom the master places trust by sharing responsibility for the care of all people, resources and work.
The circle of mutually giving love is the key and at the heart of what it means to be a Christian Steward.

WE REMEMBER, WE CELEBRATE, WE BELIEVE

We remember our loved ones who are with the Lord, we celebrate the gift of eternal life, we believe in God’s gift of peace in the kingdom. We invite those families who have lost a loved one this past year to attend the 5:30 PM Mass next Saturday, October 29th.

A Sacrament Of Healing
The Anointing Of The Sick
Is anyone sick among you? Let them send for the priests of the church, and let them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord; and the Lord will raise them up; and if they have committed any sins, their sins will be forgiven them.” James 5:14- 15.
Next weekend at all of the Masses we will celebrate the Sacrament of The Anointing of the Sick. The Sacrament of the Sick is one of the healing sacraments. It is a balm for physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual ills.

The Ritual

  • The Sacrament may be administered individually or in a communal setting.
  • After an appropriate Scripture reading, the priest prays over the sick person by the laying on of hands on the head of the sick person.
  • The forehead is anointed with the Oil of the Sick. The prayer:

Through this holy anointing may the Lord in his love and mercy help you with the grace of the Holy Spirit.” R. Amen.

  • The palms of the hands are anointed:

May the Lord who frees you from sin save you and raise you up.” R. Amen.

  • The following prayer is said after the anointing:

Father in heaven, through this holy anointing grant your people comfort in suffering. When they are afraid give them courage, when afflicted give them patience, when dejected, afford them hope, and when alone, assure them of the support of your holy people. We ask this through Christ our Lord.” R. Amen.

Our Parish Plan for Prayer and Healing Next Weekend
  • Prayer for the healing power of God to be manifest in each one of our lives accompanied by appropriate music for healing will shape our worship theme.
  • Those who choose to receive the Sacrament of the Sick are asked to sit in the first or last row of any section of pews. Wheelchairs can be accommodated in the open space in front of the Ambo. This seating arrangement will allow us to have access to your head and hands for the anointing.
  • The Sacrament will be administered directly following a brief homily at all of the Masses.

RCIA

Right of Christian Initiation of Adults
We invite you to be our companion on the journey. Our next session is Monday, October 24th at 7 PM in the Russo Room. For more information about RCIA please call Donna Scancarella at (973) 779-6200.
Bible Study
Fr. Kevin’s Bible Study Sessions: Mondays at 11:00 AM in the Molloy Center. Our theme this year is the Good News. This semester, we will study the Good News of the Gospel of St John. It contains a more developed theological reflection than the other three (synoptic) gospels. It was written later and clarifies issues affecting the early church.
Saint Philip Handbell Choir
The Saint Philip Handbell Choir is seeking to expand its membership for the upcoming choir season and is inviting new members, as well as returning members, to attend an organizational meeting/rehearsal on Monday, October 24 at 6:00 PM in church. Participation in the Handbell Choir is open to persons high school age and up, and is not limited to persons with previous musical training, although music literacy is certainly appreciated. Rehearsals are held regularly in church on Monday evenings from 6:00 PM to 6:45 PM. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact Frank Hydash, Director of Music, or stop by after mass to speak in person. Please join us and become a part of this beautiful ministry!
A Time of Prayer for our Country
On Saturday, November 5th from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM, the Blessed Sacrament will be exposed in Church, accompanied by times of prayer and silence ending with Benediction at 12:45 PM. This will be a time of prayer for our country on the eve of the national election for president of the United States. Please join us.

MINISTRIES AND ORGANIZATIONS

Widow/Widowers

  • The Monday Night Group: November 7th & 21st at 6:30 PM
  • The New & Recently Bereaved Group: Wednesday, October 26th, November 9th,November 22nd at 7:00 PM

Rosary Society
Monday, October 24: Beginning with the Rosary and Mass at 6:30 PM in Marian Hall. All are welcome-please join us!
Columbiettes
Our next meeting is on Thursday, October 27 at 7 PM. We are collecting peanut butter, tuna, canned meats, non-sugary cereals and annual dues! We hope to see you there to start our new year!
Columbiettes Homemade Ravioli Fundraiser!
A Gourmet Dinner in 10 minutes!

  • Ravioli 16 to 20 per pack 14oz. $7.00 to $12.00 per pack
  • Orders and payment are due Thursday, October 27
  • Please pay with cash or checks payable to cash
  • Delivery will be Thursday, November 17 @ 7 PM

Please contact Maureen for a list of ravioli choices and to place order at: 201-407-3148 or Beautynj4u@yahoo.com

ST. PHILIP PREPARATORY SCHOOL

Second grade is getting ready for their First Reconciliation. We will be preparing during class until December. The children are also enjoying learning about the weather. We created a weather chart to track the weather every day to see what trends there are with our weather. We had a lot of fun trying to figure out the 80 degree weather this week! The children are also very excited about our Halloween parade that will be coming up soon. They are eager to share their costumes with the whole school. In reading and math class, we love using our Kindles to help enrich our learning. Second graders use apps to help with parts of speech, ABC order, subtraction and time.

RELIGIOUS EDUCATION

Religious Education Classes schedule
Grades 1, 3, 4, 5, and 6: November 13, December 4, 18
Grade 2: November 13, 20, December 4, 11, 18
Grades 7, 8: November 20, December 11
Confirmation Grade 9, 10: November 20, December 11

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