October 30, 2020
Dear Friends on the Journey,
A reporter challenged the first major Catholic candidate to run for president, Al Smith, on whether, as president, he would have to follow papal encyclicals, not the U.S. Constitution.
His reply, according to one apocryphal version, was, “What the hell is an ‘encyclical’? I don’t even own a bicycle!”
In our Catholic jargon, an “encyclical” is an official letter from the Pope to the Church, usually dealing with one important topic. Recently Pope Francis issued an encyclical entitled “Fratelli Tutti: On Fraternity and Social Friendship.” (If you are ambitious and have some time (87 pages of time) you can read it here — link.)
Pope Francis, who has reached out to religious leaders both within and outside Christianity, was inspired to write this by his meeting with a very prominent Muslim leader. In this encyclical, Pope Francis has offered not only to the Church (the usual addressee of such letters) but to the whole world, a consideration of how we are all interconnected, indeed, related to one another on this globe. He uses Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan to explore our relatedness.
Another source Pope Francis thought – probably like you and me – has been his meditating on what we have to learn from, and therefore how we are to live in, our current Covid-ridden world.
A worldwide tragedy like the Covid-19 pandemic momentarily revived the sense that we are a global community, all in the same boat, where one person’s problems are the problems of all. Once more we realized that no one is saved alone; we can only be saved together [This crisis is…] revealing once more the ineluctable and blessed awareness that we are part of one another, that we are brothers and sisters of one another.
He concludes this thought by writing, “The pain, uncertainty and fear, and the realization of our own limitations, brought on by the pandemic have only made it all the more urgent that we rethink our styles of life, our relationship, the organization of our societies and, above all the meaning of our existence.”
Is that true for you? A few questions, then:
· How has the pandemic changed, broadened, or narrowed your view of human solidarity?
· Have you become more generous in your assessment of your family, your community, your workplace as a result of the pandemic?
Pope Francis concludes: “If only we might rediscover once for all that we need one another.”
What do you think?
More next week…
REMEMBERING OUR DECEASED…
November is traditionally the time we remember those who have gone before us into Eternal Life. We invite you to submit names of your loved ones by filling out this form click here. The names will then be inscribed in our Book of Remembrance which will be displayed in our sanctuary. Names will also be part of an online and in Chapel PowerPoint presentation displayed at Sunday Mass.
In addition, we will have a special In Memoriam on Sunday, November 15. If you would like to submit a photo, along with the name, of those who died this past year, please send the photo and name to Peter Ghiloni, email@example.com by November 10.
Considering Racism, Locally:
The local Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary is hosting a panel discussion and program on “Justice, Politics & the Black Church of Boston.” All are welcome at this free event on Facebook. 9am-11:30am, Saturday, October 31st (tomorrow!) on their Facebook stream. Here’s the link.
We hold the 60 members of the Paulist Center Community who are now journeying through the Faith and Racial Equity course. Their considerable commitment will make us a better community.
A smile-worthy 3-minute reflection on the origins and meaning of Halloween. From our friends at BustedHalo: Here’s the link.
We are looking for three candidates to fill out places on our Pastoral Council (meets once a month for two hours). If you would like to know more about how to serve the community through this visioning body, please contact Fr. Mike.
To learn more about how you can attend – for free – the Archdiocesan convocation around Social Justice (November 7th, 10am-12:30pm), go to this link.
Worshiping In-Person at the Paulist Center Chapel
(imperative if you will be worshiping with us) …
We have re-entered our Paulist Center Chapel. Please reserve a place for either the 5pm Mass on Saturday or the 10am on Sunday.
How to reserve a place?
Call the Center (617.742.4460) Wednesday through noontime 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).
Again, please read the Procedures carefully and watch the video [both links below]). Of special note:
- The doors open 10 minutes before the service.
- Masks must be worn at all times in the Chapel.
- Please follow the directions of the hospitality ministers when entering, exiting, and at communion.
- Because central Boston is now in the “Red Zone,” we will be taking the temperature of everyone who enters the Chapel. Thank you for your understanding;
- Once seated, please stay in place.
- We invite you to hum along with the songs (no singing).
1) Here are the expectations and requirements: Procedures
2) A wonderful YouTube Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5A6uzhJH-Y&feature=youtu.be
If you can assist 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
1.) Feast of All Saints, this year on Sunday, November 1st, Live Streamed Liturgy/Mass from the Chapel, at 10am (available as recording at same link after 11:15pm):
Here’s the link: https://youtu.be/vuuN1gGL-cY
2) Paulist Center Families Prayer Service, 10 am, Sunday
New Zoom meeting ID. See the emailed weekly Missive from Fr. Mike McGarry for the link.
Please note that this service – to which all are invited – is only live. That is, you can join only at 10am. The recording of the live-streamed Mass can be viewed anytime: “live” at 10am or recorded any time after 11:15am, same link.
Join Zoom Meeting at this link:
4) All are welcome to a half-hour prayer gathering with/from the Lector Group led by Barbara Lapinskas, next Wednesday, November 4th, 7pm, All are welcome!
Spreading the Wealth:
Our “Community Gift” is our tradition of giving away 5% of our weekend offerings, averaged out over the whole year, to a group outside of ourselves.
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 with the wise words of St. Teresa of Avila:
Nothing can trouble,
nothing can frighten.
Those who seek God shall
never go wanting.
Nothing can trouble,
nothing can frighten.
God alone fills us.
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.