Dear Parish Family:
September is a time of transformation. Every year at this time, we come back from our summer vacations and our church is reinvigorated. Children return to their formation classes and our parish becomes a center of activity for our families, a place of encounter. This year is no different. In September, the Universal Church emphasizes the importance of family as The World Meeting of Families takes place in Philadelphia from September 23rd - 27th.
We eagerly await the message that Pope Francis will have for us in his homily during the Papal Mass on Sunday, September 27th. What will the Pope have to say at the culmination of the World Meeting of Families? We know that our families are domestic churches, centers evangelization and encounter which mirror the Parish family, or the Church. Pope Francis recently said that "families and parishes are the two places where we encounter, in every age, that communion of love which has its ultimate source in God. Just as our families are domestic churches, our parishes are called to be welcoming families."READ MORE
From the earliest time I can remember, I have been going to church and hungering for a relationship with God. My parents diligently took me to Sunday services in the Presbyterian Church and I came to know and love the Lord in a very personal way. My desire to understand Him and His word drove me to intense Bible study and ultimately to pursue a degree in Theology. I've continued to feel His presence in so many ways throughout my life... The same Jesus I encountered as a young boy is the one who comforted Karen and me when our son Jack was diagnosed with type one diabetes at the age of two. He has been with us through many sorrows and challenges and also in our greatest joys and realization of dreams throughout the years.READ MORE
While we can encounter GOD at many different times in our lives, one memorable encounter for me was in the Sacrament of Reconciliation many years ago. I was in my last year of law school and had been recognizing GOD's pull on my heart to go to Confession. At that point, I hadn't been to Confession for over 10 years. It was a struggle for me to go because it had been so long, and I hadn't been exactly living a life of virtue over that time.
Though I didn't realize it, GOD was gently and patiently leading me to that point through several different circumstances. While I resisted along the way, He kept pursuing me. After several months, I finally, though GOD's grace, went to Confession.READ MORE
Dear Parish Family:
I am happy to announce that, as of August 4th, Fr. Antony Arockiadoss joined us at St. Magdalen's as the Associate Pastor. He arrives from St. Bartholomew Church in East Brunswick, where he served as Parochial Vicar. Fr. Antony will be working to assist Fr. Tim in coordinating the Spanish Ministries. He just returned from studying in Mexico, where he has been studying the Spanish language (he also speaks English and French, and has studied Greek).
Fr. Antony was born on the 1st of February, 1976 in the city of Chenai, Tamil Nadu in Southern India, but was raised in Bangalore, Karnataka which is also in the South. At the youthful age of fourteen he joined the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (MSC). He was ordained on the 28th of June, 2003. His favorite saying comes from Tamil, one of the five Indian dialects which Fr. Antony speaks: "Yaadhum Oore Yaavarum Kelir" which means "Every country is your own, and all people are your kinsmen."READ MORE
One of my tasks as Director of Communications here at Saint Magdalen's is to help us find creative ways of sharing the gospel message. That is why, in bulletin articles over the last two weeks, we have been exploring what it means to have an "encounter" with Christ. An encounter of this kind is truly transformative, calling us out of ourselves and into a deeper connection with Christ and others.
We want to know about your encounters with Christ. Please send a 200-250 word document to me, Fred Proulx, along with your photo, to be shared in upcoming bulletins. My email is email@example.com. We look forward to hearing from you!READ MORE
Beloved parishioners of St. Magdalen, staff members and visitors,
Heartfelt greetings and peace!
I came as a stranger six and a half years ago to St. Magdalen's but I leave today as a friend to many people. Allow me to take this opportunity to express my gratitude for the journey of faith we have travelled together, sharing the faith of Jesus our Savior. Sincere gratitude for your love, prayers, generosity, care, guidance, patience, meals (especially the carrot cakes), as well as smiling and laughing with me. If someone ever got hurt by my imperfections, I ask for forgiveness. A million thanks to Fr. Tim Christy for many things (he knows them)! I treasure the cordial relationships I have developed with many parishioners and the sweet memories that I keep within my heart. Thanks be to God by whose grace our paths crossed.READ MORE
What does it mean to have a personal "encounter" with God? How can we be open to this experience? How does it affect us?
Encounter is born from our spiritual hunger for a relationship with God. We need to feel our innate need to be in relationship with the Infinite Mystery. "From the time of our conception, we are called to communion with God. The desire for God is written in the human heart, because man is created by God and for God; and God never ceases to draw man to himself. Only in God will he find the truth and happiness he never stops searching for" (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 27).READ MORE
What does it mean that masculinity and femininity are complementary?
How does God reveal us to ourselves in the image of marriage?
How is the family a place of encounter, a school of holiness, and a way of the cross?
These are the types of questions that were answered at the Wake up the World: The Family Fully Alive presentation series, held in anticipation for September's World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia with Pope Francis. The series, comprised of three nights of presentations and reflections, focused on the goodness of sexual identity, the profundity of marriage, and the dignity of the family.READ MORE
Dear Parish Family:
I would like to share with you that Fr. Joseph has been assigned as Parochial Vicar of St. Bernadette Church in Parlin, New Jersey and will be leaving our parish at the end of next month.
Over the past six years, the contributions that Fr. Joseph has made to St. Magdalen are invaluable. From his compassionate involvement with the Divorce Care ministry to his important task of leading the Spanish ministry, a work of the Spirit that has borne much fruit for the parish. Fr. Joseph has truly personified the mission of St. Magdalen de Pazzi Church. His efforts have led to a more fully integrated yet diverse community. In addition to these ministries, Fr. Joseph has also served the parish through visiting the sick and giving the sacraments to the infirm and dying.READ MORE
Dear Parish Family:
It is my joy to announce to you the hiring of Mr. Darrin Nelson, who joined our parish staff as of June 1st. Darrin will be in the position of Pastoral Administrator and will work collaboratively with me to accomplish the parish goals of evangelization through the administration of the pastoral council, commissions and ministry development.
Darrin comes from a rich background of pastoral experience. After working for 2 years in the Diocese of Metuchen, beginning in 2000 with the office of Youth Ministry, he transitioned to St. Charles Borromeo Church in Skillman, NJ, where he eventually became the pastoral assistant. He holds a Master of Arts degree in systematic theology from the College of Saint Elizabeth and has worked on diocesan initiatives for ministry development in parishes, including: pastoral ministries, men's ministry, marriage preparation, pastoral council, ethnic diversity, disability ministry, website development, RCIA, liturgical ministry, and bible study.READ MORE