Remember that old song from the 1960’s, “The Sounds of Silence”? It was written when President Kennedy was assassinated. The people felt such darkness and despair. In scary times of fear and desperation, we often go into silence to find God and security; but today the gospel shows us a different approach to finding peace.
The apostles’ boat is anything but silent—they’re being tossed wildly by wind and storm, praying for help, when suddenly Jesus is walking toward them. He comes in the very heart of the crisis, just as he does when we are in “the perfect storm” of chaos and disaster in our own lives.
But it’s not over yet. Peter still had to climb out of his boat (and Elijah, out of his cave, in the first reading) in order to hear and receive God’s saving action. Remember that Peter was already an apostle, a true believer in Jesus—in fact, the first Pope! But faith in Jesus is not an automatic haven of safety for anyone. Believing in Jesus is no excuse to sit back and wait to be delivered. Faith requires real movement from our side. Even if that’s just us shaking in our boots!
When our faith is wavering the most, and we’re least in control of things, we hear Jesus’ call: “Come to me. Do what must be done.” So we have to lift both legs over the side and start walking on water toward the Body of Christ.
The best way to find God in times of stress is to step out of our comfort zone and make an effort to be Christ for others—bring more people into our circle of love and life. Yes, it’s great to have abundant life with our friends and families. But don’t keep it to yourselves—bring it back to the Body of Christ. Put a new leaf in your table and ask someone to dinner tonight!
Friday, August 15th is the Feast of the Assumption of Mary, a holyday of obligation. On this day we recall Our Lady being assumed into Heaven and crowned Queen. Though the Church has always believed in the Assumption of Mary, the dogma was only formally defined by Pope Pius XII in 1950 in the Bull Munificentissimus Deus. A Vigil Mass will be celebrated in our parish on Thursday evening at 7:00 pm and on Friday Mass will be celebrated at 6:45 and 9:00 am and 12 noon. After the 9:00 Mass, everyone is invited to join in an outdoor procession from the church to the Pier Marina for the Blessing of the Water and Boats. Along the route of the procession, we will pray the rosary and sing Marian hymns. Please bring flowers with you for the procession if you wish to throw them in the water during the blessing.
…About the Blessing of Water and Boats. It is the custom in many coastal regions in the United States and Europe to have special blessings of water—the sea or ocean—on the Feast of the Assumption. The custom originally began in 15th century Italy, when a bishop traveling from Venice prayed and threw his pastoral ring into the sea from the ship—the seas became calm! In the U.S., these celebrations take place annually in Atlantic City, Camden, and other coastal cities and seaports along the eastern seaboard. It is common at some of these celebrations for people to fill bottles with water from the sea after the priest or bishop has blessed it and use it like regular holy water. Please join us on August 15th!
125th Anniversary of St. Rose—the Feast of Saint Rose and our Parish Picnic! On Saturday, August 23rd, we celebrate the Feast of Saint Rose, our parish feast day. Please join us for the 5:00 Vigil Mass and the short procession we will have after Mass with the statue of Saint Rose from the church to the altar set up in the parking lot of St. Rose High School. After that ceremony, we invite you to continue our celebration with a Parish Picnic. Delicious food, beverages, games for the kids and music. Tickets go on sale this weekend after all the Masses for only $5.00 per family! Tickets will also be available at the Parish Office until August 20th. John Prorok and his committee along with Knights of Columbus have been working very hard to make this a wonderful summer evening with our parish family….so we hope to see you there!
The 125th Anniversary of Saint Rose Church Mass of Thanksgiving will be celebrated on Sunday, October 5 at a special liturgy at 12:00 Noon. (Note: The 11:30 Mass has been moved to 12:00 for this special Anniversary Mass). Bishop David O’Connell, CM, will be the Principal Celebrant and many priests—former pastors and associates—will be concelebrating. The Sisters of St. Joseph who have served our parish have also been invited. The Gala Dinner Dance will take place at Buona Serra Palazzo in Ocean Twp., NJ, beginning at 2:00 pm. Tickets will be $50 per person and will include a one-hour open bar, and a delicious sit down dinner with The Tides, a seven piece band, playing for your listening and dancing pleasure. Tickets will go on sale later this month.
“The liturgy celebrates with solemnity the Blessed Virgin’s Assumption into heaven. This is a day of hope and light, because all men and women, pilgrims on the earth, are able to foresee in Mary the ‘destiny of glory’ that awaits them. On this day, we contemplate the Handmaid of the Lord in paradise, encircled in regal radiance, where even in her glorified body she has gone before us. We look to her as a sign of sure hope. Indeed, in Mary, God’s promise to the humble and righteous is fulfilled: evil and death will not have the last word…” (St. John Paul II). Our Lady, Queen assumed into Heaven, pray for us! Have a good week and may God bless you and keep you always in His Love!
I invite you to scroll down on this page and leave a comment. I look forward to reading your thoughts!
Submit your photos! You are invited to send your best cellphone photo of you and your family at Mass — at the entrance to church, in front of a stained glass window or seated in your pew. Photos will be posted on the following or a subsequent weekend, as space permits. Please give the name(s) as you would like it to be listed under the photo. [Send the photo(s) to GJRyan(“at”)optonline.net]
Spend time with today’s Scripture Readings (August 10, 2014) here.
Joyfully in the Lord,
Rev. Msgr. Edward J. Arnister
Pastor, St. Rose Parish