Easter at Saint Mary’s
There are always things to celebrate after Holy Week. I want to give thanks for the spirit of joy that was so evident in all areas of our common life from the beginning of the week to the end. It was easy for so many to work so hard and to give so much of themselves when every time one looked in any direction, someone had joy on his or her face. I’m not making this up. This isn’t fluff. This is the character of this Christian community.
One of the reasons things went so well was because of the work of my colleague, Father Allen Shin, the planning and care of the MC’s, and the efforts of all of the altar servers. The service booklets were beautifully and knowledgeably prepared by John Beddingfield. One of the reasons that Holy Week goes so well is that we are used to doing liturgy here. Though each of the liturgies of Holy Week has its own world of details, these services still have a lot in common with the services of the rest of the year. Yes, there is something special about all of them. There is an intensity to their meaning. But liturgy is always important at Saint Mary’s. It is simply the ethos of our community to love the liturgy and to be claimed and changed by it. In Holy Week, we simply go deeper.
A special word needs to be said about the work and love given to the parish by our interim music director. Andrew Adams’s fine work was very much in evidence all week. Not only did he organize, rehearse and conduct all of the choral music, he wrote the lovely choral responsories for Tenebrae and arranged many of the Latin propers. Shayne Doty played for most of our services and gave two beautiful recitals. Dale Bonenberger played for one of the Masses on Easter Day. Some in our parish may not know that Andrew, Shayne, and Dale all have full-time positions elsewhere. Many, many extra hours were put into making Holy Week so special, and we could tell. Thank you all so very much. The music was simply amazing all week.
On Easter Monday my sinful pride could not keep me from looking in on some other churches in our community. Without question, SMV is by far the most beautifully and tastefully decorated church I saw. One cannot pay a designer to do what Howard Christian does. A designer could only do this if he or she loved, understood and was committed to a parish and a tradition. The flowers are overwhelmingly beautiful, simply overwhelming.
The ministry of hospitality is also at the core of our common life. It began with shopping and baking cookies before Palm Sunday and continued through Easter Day. There was just a lot of fellowship and people making others feel welcome and special in God’s name. It mattered that ushers welcomed people to Mass. It matters that all of us are interested in welcoming people to Saint Joseph’s Hall.
People also may not appreciate how very hard the church staff works. There’s more of everything during Holy Week at Saint Mary’s. And those of us in the office also managed to survive the installation of the new computer system at the same time. Colleagues, thank you.
I always learn something about the parish as well as about myself during Holy Week. This year I learned in new ways what a great parish community I serve. I saw people giving of themselves in ways which only helped me to be a better person and priest. Thank you.
PRAYER LIST . . . Your prayers are asked for Beatrice who is hospitalized, Jack, Nolan, Harold, Olga, Carl, Harold, Frank, Eleanor, John, Barbara, Roy, Peter, John, Jonathan, Bill, Melanie, Joe, Elwyn, Shirlah, Joyce, Daisy, Naomi, Madelyn, Karen, Michael, Kenneth, Ursula, Jessica, Rodney, priest, Charles, priest, and Arthur, priest.
GRANT THEM PEACE . . . April 24: 1993 Claude Cecil Morris, Jr., April 25: 1999 Helena Kingman, April 27: 1953 Hugh M. Smallwood, 1994 Frances Flagg.
LITURGICAL NOTES . . . The Lessons for the Masses of the Second Sunday of Easter will be found in the Prayer Book on page 916. The Lessons for the Offices of Easter Day will be found in the Prayer Book on page 958 . . . Confessions will be heard on Saturday, April 21, by Father Shin . . . Confessions will be heard on Saturday, April 28, by Father Gerth.
AROUND THE PARISH . . . Beatrice Norling remains at Hackensack University Medical Center. Please continue to keep her in your prayers . . . The Rector will be away from Thursday, April 19, through Thursday, April 26. He will be guest preacher on Sunday, April 22, at Trinity By-the-Cove Church, Naples, Florida . . . The new rectory gates have been installed. We are very pleased and thankful for the work of our architect, Peter Pennoyer, and his associates . . . We have been asked to announce that the New York Chapter of the Society of Charles, King and Martyr, will celebrate the Canonization of Saint Charles of England, 26 Apr 1661, with a Mass at Saint Paul's Church, Clinton and Carroll Streets, Brooklyn, at 11:00 AM, on Saturday, 28 April 2001. Luncheon at the Park Plaza Restaurant will follow. For further information call Dr. Bernard Brennan, (718) 852-8235 . . . Recent Attendance Numbers: Tenebrae 191, Maundy Thursday 175, Good Friday 371, Easter Vigil 227, Easter Day was 440.
SAINT MARY’S ONLINE . . . The parish has a new web address. We decided that Saint Mary’s should be a dot-org instead of a dot-com. In order to facilitate this, for the present time we own both addresses. But long-term we are a dot-org and we expect this to be our permanent address. In addition, the parish staff is now online. Individual address are as follows:
ADDITIONS TO THE LIST OF EASTER FLOWER DONORS . . . Jon Bryant, Robert Christian in honor of Howard Christian, George Gosden, Francine Harvey, John Moran, Alice Roggenkamp, and Robert VanVleet.
Rejoice now, heavenly hosts and choirs of angels,
and let your trumpets shout Salvation for the victory of our mighty King.
Rejoice and sing now, all the round earth,
bright with a glorious splendor, for darkness has been vanquished
by our eternal King.
Rejoice and be glad now, Mother Church,
and let your holy courts in radiant light,
resound with the praises of your people.
All you who stand near this marvelous and holy flame,
pray with me to God the Almighty
for the grace to sing the worthy praise of this great light,
through Jesus Christ his Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with him,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen
The Calendar of the Week
Sunday The Second Sunday of Easter
Monday Easter Weekday
Tuesday Easter Weekday
Eve of Saint Mark 6:00 PM
Wednesday Saint Mark the Evangelist
Thursday Easter Weekday
Friday Easter Weekday
Saturday Of Our Lady
The Parish Clergy
The Reverend Stephen Gerth, rector,
The Reverend Allen Shin, curate, The Reverend Thomas Breidenthal, assistant,
The Reverend Arthur Wolsoncroft, The Reverend Canon Maurice Garrison, The Reverend Amilcar Figueroa, The Reverend J. Barrington Bates, assisting priests, The Reverend Canon Edgar F. Wells, rector emeritus.
The Parish Office
Telephone 212-869-5830, Facsimile 212-869-7039
Saint Mary's Online