As Jesus walked along the shore of Lake Galilee

Jesus spent a lot of time along the shore. St. Mark’s gospel practically starts with Jesus walking along the shore. Jesus preached by the shore, walked from the shore out to the boat, across the water, and appears on the shore, seaside, after His resurrection. The well known poem, ‘Footprints in the Sand’ speaks of Jesus walking with us along the shore of our life, beside us at times, carrying us at others. All of these references to the shore, and we never see any references to snow or cold throughout Jesus’ ministry. Sure, there was the storm on the sea, but Jesus took care of that. No cold because there is none in God. As we enter the fullness of the summer months, we find yet again, Jesus with us at the shore. We recognize that Jesus doesn’t hang back at home while we head out to the shore. He is ready, and very much happy to go along. After all, the seaside town of Capernaum was His base (ok, enough, I see that Jesus loved the shore and the sea). Wherever we may go this summer, the message isn’t about Jesus’ love of tourist destinations or those quiet secluded places only we and a few of our friends know about, but rather about what Jesus accomplishes wherever He may be. Jesus loved these places, the shore especially, not because He liked to hang out and soak up rays, but because – the key – that’s where the people were. Jesus came to bring a powerful message – The kingdom is at hand, it is about to break open with a sunlight and freedom you have never known, and when it opens, I want you to be ready to enter. Jesus came to bring that message to everyone. We all have access. The lovely song, Lord, You Have Come To The Seashore/Pescador de Hombres/Barka makes the point. He came to seek, to call, to proclaim. Having done so, He expects us to take up with Him, at the shore, anywhere we go, and say: at Your side, I will seek other shores. Let us seek those shores – the opportunity to make Jesus known everywhere.

Summer is here and the calendar is full of the fun, relaxing, family activities that will live on as fond memories and great friendships. We have our annual church-wide Summer camp and celebrate the camp’s 90th anniversary. There’s golf, music, a picnic (everyone is invited), a wedding shower, a free play, prayers for our country, and a few preparatory items for those far off – after Labor Day – activities.

Don’t rush it. Enjoy it! …and hang with Jesus at the shore.

Read more in our July/August 2019 Newsletter.

Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.

The world is in our face, and the struggles of many are on our conscience. In this constant onslaught, we are called by many voices into judgment on matters of human dignity. Many voices call us to make judgments – and in many respects to value one thing over and against another, one person over another, one policy over another. Because this is the perpetual situation in the world, the words of Jesus must be first and foremost in our minds and hearts. His teaching and way must be our guide. I have heard many of these voices: A man shouting in a store: “No one cares about kids killing each other in Chicago, why should we care about these kids.” Posts on Facebook that call out all the ways children suffer in our nation – those killed in the womb, those separated from parents by imprisonment or divorce, and other factors. The writer implies that our concerns for ‘each’ child is not good enough. In all of these the speaker or writer is calling us to chose, to judge. What many seem to miss is our call as Christians to respect the dignity of each and every human being. No sin, no misstep in God’s eyes, decreases a person’s dignity. No color, background, ethnic identity, financial standing, orientation, national origin, or self-identity makes a human being less in God’s eyes. Nothing ever must lessen the respect and honor we owe to all. True, Jesus calls all to reformation, to change and reconciliation. He often said: Go, and sin no more. People responded and did exactly that – they were changed. What we must remember is that Jesus never allowed the sin of anyone to bar the door. He called all to change because all have equal dignity in His eyes. Our call is to live our aspirations – to be the absolute best by living in full accord with God’s call. Let us never aspire to exclude, but to include. Let us aspire to open hearts and open doors, to reform and love as Jesus says we must. To respect and protect the dignity of each person.

Our July/August newsletter offers congratulations on several very special events in our parish, highlights our great summer activities, celebrates our Country’s independence, remembers our dearly departed brother śp. Richard, and gets to preparations for Back to Church Sunday – September 16th. The newsletter offers tips and advice for homebound faithful so they can stay sacramentally involved and connected. Let us know if we can help.

We also sadly reflect on the decline of the Roman Catholic Church in Schenectady and the challenges facing that Church. The National Catholic Church program is the best and strongest response and protection for its members. Parish property, finances, and the future of each parish are fully in the hands of its members, not distant bishops and ‘popes.’ We are thankful for that legacy. If you know someone who seeks the fulness of Catholic life and all the sacraments each Sunday, invite them to Holy Name. If you are looking for a place to express the Catholic faith as believed and celebrated by the undivided Church of the first millennium, join us here in Mont Pleasant. You Belong Here!


Check out all this and more in our July/August 2018 Newsletter.

I have much more to say to you, but right now it would be more than you could understand.

Jesus spoke those words in His final instructions to His Apostles and disciples, the night of the Last supper. Jesus, in His infinite wisdom and love, knew they were not quite ready for everything He had to tell them. It remains that way today. Jesus has many things for us to understand and to accomplish. He does not just lay it all on us at once, but rather, as we are ready. In the verse after this one, Jesus goes on to say: The Spirit shows what is true and will come and guide you into the full truth. That is great consolation – that the Holy Spirit would come, has indeed come – to guide us and train us in all of God’s truth and in Jesus’ desire for our future. As parents, grandparents, and family members we hold great expectations for our children’s futures. Obviously, we don’t lay it all on them at the age of two – ‘this is everything I expect you to accomplish.’ It would be too much, and frankly too presumptuous. Rather, we instruct and guide, pave the way forward. We watch as our children evolve. As young people, we come to realize that the expectations of others, and those we place on ourselves, may not often turn out the way anyone expects – but yet in a way we have been prepared for all along. During the month of June we take pause to consider God’s desire for us. We hopefully stop, shut out the noise, and listen to the things He is revealing to us. His revelation is now. Stop, listen, and feel the prompting of the Holy Spirit, His nudge in a certain direction and for a glorious purpose. Jesus puts His desires on our hearts and minds, He leads us by the sending forth of the Holy Spirit. We have to realize that when He says we are ready – we indeed are ready. Jesus and the Spirit are never before the right time, never before we can bear it, but when we are ready. Have we heard Him speak? Will we take up His charge? Having heard, it is time to say ‘Yes LORD.’

The June newsletter offers tons of information on vocations. Read our Bishop’s Pastoral Letter. Pray fervently and diligently for the gift of vocations. Read from the Fathers on humility and sacrifice. Join us on Father’s Day for Holy Mass and breakfast, and pray for the special men in our lives. Check out our list of summer events and happenings. Read up on ‘saints’ who hate us and false apparitions and visions. Jesus is indeed the final word and we should be following His teaching; all that and more in our June 2018 Newsletter.

She entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth.

We begin our summer with the celebration of Holy Mass on Sunday, July 2nd followed quickly by the celebrations of the Visitation and Independence Day. The Visitation holds special significance for us. What would summer be without visits with family and friends, getting together for picnics, or the traditional family road trip to go visiting? The scene of Mary’s visit to her cousin Elizabeth is part of the larger story of salvation. The story line in Luke’s gospel is the story of God’s powerful desire to visit with us, to be present in our lives. Mary’s visit with Elizabeth would not have been possible without the angel Gabriel’s visit with Zachariah (Elizabeth’s husband) telling him that they would have a son. It would not have been possible without that same angel’s visit to Mary, telling her that God desired to place His Son in the world, to visit with us. All of salvation history is a telling of God’s visitation with us. He wants to be with us, even when we do not want to be with Him. He remains with us and calls us back even when we wander off. He continually calls us into deeper and deeper relationship with Him. He is the visitor that never leaves! As we contemplate our best visitor, let us also take up Mary’s example As we get out there to visit this summer, let’s talk about the One best visitor ever. Help others invite Him into their lives.

Join us this summer as we continue to visit with Jesus, as we are assured of His abiding presence with us. There are tons of summer activities – Kurs Youth Camp, Independence Day, the National United Choirs Convention and Music Workshop, the YMSofR Golf Tournament, our neighborhood and community picnic, and so much more. We will continue gathering bras – that’s right, bras!

You may view and download a copy of our July/August 2017 Newsletter right here.

Click on the attached Master Schedule of Summer Meals sites in Schenectady and a Schedule of sites by neighborhood. For the site nearest you, please call United Way’s 2-1-1 or text FOOD to 877-877.

Sites in Mont Pleasant include:

  • Faith Deliverance Tabernacle, 1028 Ostrander Place, 6/27-8/12, 12:15-1:30
  • Mont Pleasant Library—Mobile Site*, 1026 Crane Street, 6/27-9/2, 2:10-2:30
  • New Day Christian Empowerment Center, 1259 Chrisler Avenue, 6/27-9/2, 12:30-1:45
  • Orchard Park—Mobile Site*, 733 Orchard Street, 6/27-9/2, 1:45-2:00
  • Quackenbush Park, Forest Road, 7/5-8/19, 11:45-1:00
  • Wallingford Park, Congress & 5th Street, 6/27-8/26, 12:45-2:00

*Look for the SICM Mobile Meals Truck

Still on the on-time newsletter streak. How many months is it?

And he told them a parable: “Look at the fig tree, and all the trees. As soon as they come out in leaf, you see for yourselves and know that the summer is already near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that the kingdom of God is near.” Summer is about preparation. Going on a picnic? Having a barbecue? Friends coming over to sit on the deck or hit the pool? Heading off to the beach or on vacation? Going on a summer walk?
We gather food, charcoal (if you are old school like me), sunblock, bug spray, our more colorful clothes (I’m getting my Hawaiian shirts ready). Summer joy is about two things – preparation for joy and getting to that place where we can be joyful. This summer let us reflect on our spiritual preparedness and to focus on what that preparedness will bring for us – true and eternal joy. This summer, as we gather food, let us reflect on the food of everlasting life – in Word and Communion. As we put on sunblock, let us block the evils that challenge our faith. As we spray away the bugs, let us push away the things that sting our soul. And, prepare that colorful garment for the joys of the kingdom.

Also in our newsletter, prayers for Orlando, a huge thanks to the Matsiko Orphan Choir, a Year of Reverence update, a happy summer to our youth – we are off to Kurs and Convo, our parish and community picnic on the church grounds on Sunday, August 21st, and special thanks to all those who pitched in at PolishFest. So much more too…

You may view and download a copy of our July 2016 Newsletter right here.

July/August 2014 Newsletter – What’s Happening Tomorrow…?

July 1st and our newsletter is here on-time once again. It is just before midnight, so we barely made it.

July offers us the opportunity to think of the days of relaxation ahead and how Jesus fits in with those days. Summer is also filled with many Solemnities, Feasts, and Commemorations of particular importance. Read all about them. We consider our response to a neighborhood tragedy and pray for our youth and graduates. We invite you to remain in the Lord this summer, right here in Schenectady, and wherever you travel. You may view and download a copy right here — July/August 2014 Newsletter.

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July/August 2013 Newsletter

What!?! only one newsletter for July and August? Check it out, stay informed all summer long, remember that God is constant and never leaves us for vacation, want to go to a Valley Cats game?, see our action packed schedule, and be entertained. You may view and download a copy right here — July/August 2013 Newsletter.

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Upcoming local and national events – let’s go!!!

What Matters to Girls

The Schenectady League of Women Voters is hosting the Working Group on Girls Community Forum, “What Matters to Girls” on Wednesday, May 22nd at 7pm at the 1st Reformed Church, 8 North Church St., Schenectady NY. The Forum is dedicated to empowering middle and high school girls and will provide information on Girl’s Day Out and Girl’s Circles programs for student participants and adult volunteers. Topics will include increasing self esteem, making healthy choices, valuing education, and expanding girl’s vision of the future.

Connecting Faith-Based Groups with the Affordable Care Act: What You Need to Know about Changes in Health Insurance for Your Members

Congressman Paul Tonko is hosting a workshop on Connecting Faith-Based Groups with the Affordable Care Acton Wednesday, May 29th at The Crossings of Colonie, 580 Albany Shaker Rd., Loudonville, NY from 1—3pm. The focus of the workshop will be on providing up-to-date information on federal health insurance programs available to members of Faith-Based organizations. Representatives from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Region II U.S. Department of Health & Human Services will be available to provide information and resources that can help make it easier to understand health insurance options.

Medicare (health insurance for people 65 and older or with long- term disability or end-stage renal disease), Medicaid (health insurance for people with limited income), and new options for expansion of health insurance that will soon be available under the Affordable Care Act will be discussed.

You may pre-register online or by calling 518-465-0700.

Youth Forum

Schenectady Youth Boxing & Fitness is sponsoring a Youth Forum on June 13th, 10am-12pm at the Fenimore Gallery at Proctors Theater, 432 State St., Schenectady, NY. The forum includes a roundtable discussion with members from community youth focused programs with a focus on sharing goals and information as well as information on upcoming summer plans. A light lunch and opportunities for networking will follow. For more information please contact Schenectady Youth Boxing & Fitness or Judy Decker by E-mail.

2013 Kurs Youth Encampment

The 2013 Kurs Youth Encampment sponsored by the Young Men’s Society of the Resurrection of the Polish National Catholic Church will be held from June 29th through July 6th at the Bishop Hodur Retreat & Recreation Center, 596 Honesdale Road, Waymart, PA. This is by far the best summer youth event anywhere. Our young people are encouraged to attend as well as to invite friends and parishioners for a summer event that builds up faith and friendships that last a lifetime.

Click on the links below for further information and forms:

National United Choirs 2013 Music Workshop

The National United Choirs Click here for details and a registration form.

Polish National Union Trip to Poland

The Polish National Union (Spójnia) is sponsoring a trip to Poland in celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Our Lady of Perpetual Help parish in Żarki (Libiąż) Poland, the birthplace of Bishop Francis Hodur. The parish was built through the generosity of members of the Polish National Union. The trip will run from September 18th through 25th and includes tours of southern Polsnd including noted attrations in Kraków, Zakopane, and Żarki. For details please see the current issue of Straż. Reservations are due by June 10th.