St. Patrick's Online Bulletin

Eternity

11-10-2019Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

As we are now more than halfway through the season of fall, the grass is losing its green luster, leaves are falling from the trees, and most flowers are fading. The Sunday readings today and through the first Sunday of Advent call our attention to what will happen when we die. They are not meant to scare us, but to help us put our lives in perspective so we can see the gift of our lives through the lens of faith. A week ago Saturday we celebrated a special Mass on All Souls Day for all those whose funerals were celebrated in our church since last All Souls Day. Each of the names of those 161 people was read in our Prayer of the Faithful as we once again expressed our love for them and our faith in God as we prayed for them. Death is a reality that we do not like to think about at times. Yet one day we will all have that encounter.

The day I wrote this column there was a special section in the newspaper that spoke about life after fifty and reported many good, positive things that are available. As we age our bodies change physically and eventually break down at death. However it is a blessing to have our minds and hearts as full of love and life as ever. Through the vision of faith the longer we live the more full of joy, gratitude, wonder, and awe we become. Now in my 74th year of life I am very grateful to be who I am and where I am. I can look back and regret stupid things I have said and done. But I am so grateful for my family, friends, and the countless people I have encountered in my 48 years of priesthood. Life is a gift. All my good experiences are a gift. Like many of us, I look back but I have no desire to go back to my younger years. I am so grateful for them because they have brought me to be the person I am today. In 48 years of priesthood I have said Mass each day and sometimes more than one Mass. If I said just one Mass a day at this point I have celebrated more than 17,500 Masses. And each Mass is still a powerful experience. The more I can focus on the readings and prayers that the Mass offers, the more hope, wonder, gratitude I experience. God is always faithful. The more we are faithful to Him and one another, the more we are fully alive in Him and to one another.

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Announcements & Events

Edge Night

Nov 15, 2019

in Canning Hall

EDGE is for middle school students.

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Level 2 Rite of Enrollment Liturgy/Pizza Dinner

Nov 16, 2019: 5:00pm

Mass with the Pizza Dinner to follow.

Tickets for the Pizza Dinners are $25 per family.

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Life Teen Night

Nov 17, 2019

in the parish center

For more information, please email us at spslifeteen@gmail.com

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Level 7 Commitment Liturgy/Spirit Day

Nov 17, 2019: 9:00am - 12:00pm

Movie Ministry

Nov 19, 2019: 7:00pm

in the Large Meeting Room of the Parish Center

Questions? Call or text 631-375-9115 or email tab.brooks@gmail.com.

XLT Holy Hour

Nov 22, 2019: 7:00pm - 8:00pm

in the church

Level 2 Rite of Enrollment Liturgy/Pizza Dinner

Nov 23, 2019: 5:00pm

Mass with the Pizza Dinner to follow.

Tickets for the Pizza Dinners are $25 per family.

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Life Teen Night

Nov 24, 2019

in the parish center

For more information, please email us at spslifeteen@gmail.com

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The Annual Smithtown Interfaith Thanksgiving Service

Nov 24, 2019: 3:00pm

at Smithtown United Methodist, 230 East Main Street