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April 11, 2021: Divine Mercy
Easter greetings to all of you. He is Risen. He is truly Risen!
I wanted to take this opportunity to say what a wonderful Holy Week and Triduum we just celebrated last week. I told a friend the other day that this was probably the nicest and most memorable Holy Week I remember. Some of you told me the same thing and it is probably because, not only did we not celebrate at all in person last year, but the fact that so many people were so joy-filled in being able to return to church; there really was a sense of exultation.
While the number of people attending Mass was more than we have seen since last year, it was so edifying to see so many people (and families) returning to church to all the different Masses and Good Friday service. In some ways, I believe it is a perfect example of “absence making the heart grow fonder!”
I am also very thankful that just about everyone signed up to attend the events online. This was very helpful in letting us to prepare for the Mass and make sure that we had chairs/seating and the downstairs prepared for overflow in case we needed it. I ask you to please continue to register for Masses.
At the same time, I would ask that everyone please be very aware of the distancing obligation that we still have in place. I don’t want anyone to feel too comfortable in being “too close” to others, as that may make others uncomfortable. Everyone has been very good at wearing masks and sanitizing their hands, but I ask that everyone be vigilant in being aware of the space between them and their neighbor. It is also very nice to see you all moving in or around to accommodate others at Mass, especially those who come a little later.
I use this, message, also, to give everyone an update about our Annual Appeal. Recall about two months ago, I showed the Annual Appeal video at Mass and explained all the ways that the Appeal helps the marginalized in our Archdiocese, as they were especially hit hard during the last year’s pandemic. Our goal is $82,300 for the campaign and so far we have received $63,000 in pledges. This is very good news so far. At the same time, I would like to encourage those who have not yet given to the Appeal to consider doing so. We are hoping to have the $82,300 pledged and received by the end of the church’s fiscal year of June 30, 2021. If we reach this goal by then, we will receive a 2% reduction in next year’s assessments to be paid (a savings of about $15,000!). Any monies received above our goal comes directly back to St. Cassian Parish to be used as we need! Please give to this important cause and help the marginalized and at the same time benefit our Parish’s finances for next year.
A special thank you to those of you who have contributed so generously to our Building and Maintenance Fund (B+M) as well as the Legacy Fund. Both allow us to earmark monies for particular items and projects needed by the Parish to be funded directly. B+M helps with the general costs of maintaining the property and the expenses of running the Parish. The Legacy Fund is used for particular needs, such as projects or specific items that are needed. Because these are “restricted” funds, they are not assessed by the Archdiocese at the regular 18% rate.
Finally, this Sunday we celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday, on the 2nd Sunday of Easter. This week, we particularly highlight the Mercy of our God, which very much goes hand-in-hand with the salvation won for us by the Paschal Mystery. Hopefully, we find great comfort in knowing that God loves us so much that his “mercy endures forever.” Our prayers and Mass readings emphasize God’s mercy this weekend.
May the joy of the Easter Season remain with you these days.
Fr. Marc A. Vicari,
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
— John 3:16