February 19, 2021
Dear Friends on the Journey,
Do you want to fast this Lent?
In the words of Pope Francis……
Fast from hurting words and say kind words.
Fast from sadness and be filled with gratitude
Fast from anger and be filled with patience.
Fast from pessimism and be filled with hope.
Fast from worries and have trust in God.
Fast from complaints; contemplate simplicity.
Fast from pressures and be prayerful.
Fast from bitterness; fill your hearts with joy.
Fast from selfishness and be compassionate.
Fast from grudges and be reconciled.
Fast from words; be silent and listen.
Our Annual Financial Report from the fiscal year that ended August 31, 2020, is here. Our overwhelming message to you, our community members, is one of gratitude. While last year presented many challenges (an understatement), you all came through for the Paulist Center. Of course, we experienced significant losses: loss of our regular in-chapel collections, loss of our annual auction, loss of some Marriage Preparation program income, and a few others. On the other side of the ledger, we incurred significant expenses related to getting both short and long-term live-streaming solutions up and running. But thanks to all of you (aided by a generous bequest that arrived at the right time) and to the stable groundwork this community has laid for the last thirty years (in electronic giving and responsible stewardship), things turned out pretty well. No, very well. We showed an unrestricted operating loss of only $7,435. Trying to live within a balanced budget is always a struggle. Before awareness of the pandemic, we had budgeted a much larger deficit for the year then we actually incurred. Your extraordinary generosity in so many ways made this a remarkable result. As our Pastoral Administrator, Patty Simpson, has said, “We did not know it would be in the form of a pandemic, but this community has, in a sense, been preparing for this ‘rainy day’ for a long time.” For sure, there are still challenges ahead to keep things even-keeled, but for now, thank you ever so much for your incredible, generous support of our Paulist Center Community. If you have any questions on the report, please feel free to contact our Pastoral Administrator, Patty Simpson, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
IMPROVING OUR LIVESTREAM WORSHIP
In order to improve our camera angles during our celebrations we are going to provide an order of worship with the music selections (rather than posting them on the screen). Here is the First Sunday of Lent. (This link will also be available on the YouTube broadcast and our website. You will also be able to scan a QR Code from your screen.) After a few weeks we will ask for your feedback as to how this is working for you. Thank you for your participation.
Following last week’s reflection on the ashes in my own heart go to this link for three ways to work for justice, one in criminal justice, one in racial justice, and one in education about our history of local (Massachusetts!) slavetrading.
Each indicates how much time you will need to carve into your schedule (none more than an hour and a half).
Who will be our next Black American saint? How about Julia Greeley? You should know about her.
Here are a number of devotional and study resources for Lent.
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From our Care for Our Common Ministry: We Catholics share a strong tradition of embracing Lent with prayer, repentance, self-denial, and generous action. This year our Common Home ministry encourages us to use the Laudate Si “lens” the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor’ for our Lenten practice. Each week, this message will include one practical suggestion for action.
This week, our Lenten is buying and eating our food responsibly. Eating is a moral act. Consider abstaining from meat at least once this week. Learn more about the impact of eating.
Save this Time and Date: 7pm, Saturday, March 6th. On Zoom (of course), a live Address by Sr. Joan Chittister, OSB, winner of the 2019 (yes), Isaac Hecker Award for Social Justice.
Paulist Fathers’ News:
A retreat: “Crisis Spirituality: St Paul of the Shipwreck, Pray for Us”: Go to this link to learn more about a national Paulist Fathers Retreat, led by Frs. Frank Desiderio, Terry Ryan, and Mark-David Janus. Saturday, February 27th, 1-3pm, by Zoom. Registration Fee: $25.
Worshiping In-Person at the Paulist Center Chapel
(imperative if you will be worshiping with us)…
How to reserve a place?
Please call the Center (617.742.4460) Wednesday through Friday during business hours (10am-5pm). Sal, our receptionist, will take your name and contact information (either email or phone number. We need this information so that we can contact you should we become aware, after the liturgy, of a person with Covid who attended your Mass).
Note Carefully: If you are experiencing ANY symptom that would indicate that you are ill (not just for Covid), please stay home. If in doubt, please stay out! Also, please read carefully the Procedures and watch the video (both links below). Of special note:
- The doors open 10 minutes before the service;
- Since there is no singing, we invite you to hum along with the songs.
1) Here are the expectations and requirements
2) A wonderful YouTube Video Link
If you can assist as a Minister of Hospitality with welcoming, seating, and directing people into and out of the Chapel, we would love to hear from you! If you are not in a vulnerable group with regard to COVID-19 and are willing and able to assist in this very important ministry, please contact Peter Ghiloni at email@example.com.
2) Paulist Center Families’ Fourth Sunday Liturgy of the Word, 10am, Sunday:
See Fr. Mike’s Email Missive for the link details.
3) Paulist Center Rosary Circle. 7:30pm every Monday.
Here’s the Zoom Link: https://us04web.zoom.us/j/487503158
Meeting ID: 487 503 158; Passcode: 021078
4) All are welcome to a half-hour prayer gathering with/from the Paulist Center’s Lector Teams–led prayer next Wednesday, 7pm. See Fr. Michael’s email missive for the url.
Ways of Giving:
Our “Community Gift” is the Paulist Center’s tradition of giving away 5% of our weekend offerings, averaged out over the whole year, to a group outside of ourselves. This week, we lift up the Cambridge Sanctuary which supports members of area communities who are under threat of deportation Thank you so much for your generosity!
We are so very grateful for your support during this time of uncertainly and financial peril. Here are two ways to give:
- To make a one-time or recurring donation using your bank account or credit card, click on the following link: https://tinyurl.com/DonatePaulistCenter
Giving by text: Text 844-899-7511 with the amount you would like to donate (whole dollars only). Donations collected this way will be designated as part of the “Weekend Offering.”
- Giving by text: Text a whole dollar donation amount to 844-899-7511; this will be designated as your “Weekend Offering.”
Thank you, thank you, thank you!
I conclude now with the Prophet Micah 6:8:
Our Faithful God has told you, O mortal, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?
And let us pray for/with one another.
Michael McGarry, C.S.P.
Director, the Paulist Center
Along with Patty, Chuck, Susan, Peter, Dorothy, John, Barbara, Rob, Alvaro, and Sal. Please feel free to call upon your Pastoral Ministers if you wish.
I will be sending out something every Thursday or Friday as the “shut down” continues.