It Does Mean Me

05-31-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

In order to live together as a community we need guidelines, laws, and common sense to assure peace, cooperation, and what is good for everyone. Once we start making exceptions for ourselves to what is necessary for a healthy society and the common good, chaos erodes our concern for one another and puts us in opposition to one another. It is very easy to see the attitude that I call, "It doesn't mean me!" How many times right here in our parking lot do we see people parking right on the "No Parking" letters on the pavement? "That doesn't mean me!" That imperative is printed there to insure the safety of others in their cars, to allow the possibility of emergency vehicles, and to make sure those who are walking there are not endangered. In spite of signs that direct all sports parking and drop offs to the east side of our property, some people park their cars right in front of the sign that says, "No sports parking or dropping off." "That doesn't mean me!" Recently I had a photographer at a wedding who refused to follow our guidelines so he would not be a distraction and at the same time get good pictures. Again the attitude "It doesn't mean me!"


Michelangelo’s Rome Pieta

05-24-2015From the Pastor's Desk

On Sun, May 31 at 2:30pm, we will unveil a beautiful replica of Michelangelo’s Pieta in our church. In place of Fr. Walden’s column this week, we have information on the La Pieta written by Dr. Peter Angelo, associate professor at Stony Brook University and former St. Patrick parishioner, who was the force behind the decision to bring the sculpture to our church.


Planting, Watering and Leaving It Up to God

05-17-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

When we look at the world today it is very easy to get upset and ask, "Where are we going?" In our own country we have come to the point in our government where those we elect find it hard to work with other elected people. One party doesn't trust the other. How can we ever get to where there is peace in our hearts and peace in our world?


The Only Goal is Love

05-10-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

Happy Mother's Day to all mothers. Thank you for the gift of your life, love, and goodness. As you continue to carry us in your hearts know that we are so grateful to you for your countless acts of love and sacrifice. It is a joy to acknowledge you today and to continue to ask God's blessing upon you. I used to visit an elderly Italian lady in a nursing home for about ten years until she died at the age of 101. Each time I would see her in her heavy accent she would ask, "How's your mother?" And then she would reply to my answer by saying, "Nobody loves you like your mother." How true that is. Mothers are a beautiful image of God's love.


He is the Vine, We are the Branches

05-03-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

This weekend I am speaking at all the Masses at announcement time to officially kick off our annual fund raiser for the parish. The past eleven years we have had a car raffle, and as I reported last week in this column, we have gone from a net profit of $81,000 in the first year to $34,000 last year. While our weekly collections are just a little below last year's total at this point, our expenses continue to rise with the normal cost of everything in our economy. As I also reported last week in this column, we are working to become more energy efficient with our consumption of electricity. Through rebate offers and reduced energy consumption we will save money. That makes a difference as our current electric bills range between $10,000 to $12,000 a month for our parish plant.


Improvements, Upgrades, Funds and La Pieta

04-26-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

This week in my column, I am going to give you a copy of the letter many of you will receive in the mail, seeking your support for our Major Fundraiser for this year. Not only am I seeking your support, I am updating you on what is going on physically with our buildings and property.

As we send the enclosed brochure about our Major Fund Raiser for this year, I would like to let you know what we are doing to keep all our programs going, improve our facilities, and become more environmentally friendly. This year's Major Fund Raiser is in place of our annual Car Raffle. We began with a profit the first year (2004) of $81,000 and last year (2014) netted $34,000. Our goal this year is cut down on costs and raise $35,000. We are using the Internet to help sell chances. All you have to do is go to our Parish Website ( and click on the appropriate icons. Tickets are also available at the rectory. We are trying to sell 500 chances and will give away a top prize of $10,000 and five prizes of $1,000. While the cost of a ticket is $100, if you cannot afford to buy one by yourself, go in on it with family or friends.


Longing for God

04-19-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

At all of our Masses during these fifty days of celebrating Easter, the first reading is from the Acts of the Apostles. In this first book after the Gospels, we see the emergence of the first generation of the Church after the death of Jesus. It begins with the account of the Ascension of Jesus followed by replacing Judas with Matthias as the twelfth Apostle. In chapter two we have the account of Pentecost where the Holy Spirit descends upon the followers of Jesus and they begin their public ministry of proclaiming the Good News of Jesus who is with them always and at the same time building up the Church. We see how the Apostles went from being filled with fear, disappointment, and discouragement to people of conviction and joy in Jesus. The pariah to the religious leaders who crucified Him really is the Son of God, the Son of God who loves us and radically changes the lives of those who allow Him into their hearts.


Peace Be With You

04-12-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Patrick J. Mulcahy

Peace be with you! These are the words of greeting from Jesus to His disciples we hear in today's Gospel as He appears to them after rising from the dead. This greeting was truly a source of peace. The disciples were gathered behind locked doors for fear that if they were known as Jesus' disciples they too would experience rejection and perhaps even crucifixion. In addition to their fear of the reaction of others, they had to be full of disappointment. In Luke 24:13-35 we see the account of two disciples leaving Jerusalem after the death of Jesus for the town of Emmaus. As they are walking with sad hearts Jesus approaches and walks with them, but they do not recognize Him. They express their disappointment when they say to Jesus, "Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know of the things that have taken place there in these days?"


Rising with Jesus

04-05-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

Happy Easter! Today we celebrate that in the Death and Resurrection of Jesus sin, evil, and death have been defeated. But do we allow that reality to be the foundation of our lives? Easter is about new life, life only Jesus could and did make possible. But over and over again we go back to the old tried and untrue way of human interaction - power in the form of weapons, money, violence, and threats. We see this power everyday in the news reports. The joy and victory we celebrate as followers of Jesus today is not just something that happened 2,000 years ago and is over. It is a reality that will change our lives if we allow it to. It is a reality that can change our world if we come together with those who have the same trust in Jesus and His Resurrection that we do. That is who we are as the Church.


Glorifying the Lord By Our Lives

03-22-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

A few weeks ago I was in the eighth grade classes in our Parish School and asked them the same question I asked the young people in our seventh grade Religious Ed program at the 9:00 AM Mass last Sunday. I asked them to give me one word that would describe the world we live in today. Their responses were overwhelmingly negative. They see the world we live in as harmful, scary, violent, and dangerous. Who among us would not be tempted to use the same words ourselves as we see terrorism, violence, and dishonesty in the news everyday.


Trusting in God's Forgiveness

03-15-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

I write this column on a quiet, peaceful, snowy day. As I reflect on Fr. Fitzsimmons and the Mission he gave to our parish family the first week of this month, I am thinking about the talk he gave about God's mercy and forgiveness as we offered the Sacrament of Penance to all who came that evening. As I look out my window the falling snow covers the dirty snow and coats the trees with pure white and his reflection brought to mind the phrase from the Prophet Isaias (1:18): "Come now, let us set things right, says the Lord: though your sins be like scarlet, they may become white as snow."


We Are His Pearls of Great Price

03-08-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

What is it that we devote our time, energy, and resources to? At the first night of the Parish Mission last week, Fr. Fitzsimmons used the parable of the pearl of great price as a foundation of his first reflection for us. In Matthew 13:45-46, Jesus says: "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant's search for fine pearls. When he found one really valuable pearl, he went back and put up for sale all that he had and bought it." Our families and loved ones are pearls of great price for us. Not only do we give them our hearts and souls, we do everything we can to love them and make their lives full and rich.


Where Are You Going?

03-01-2015From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

Recently I said the funeral Mass of a friend who had a boat named Quo Vadis, Latin for "where are you going?" That question was asked of Jesus by St. Peter after Jesus had washed the feet of His disciples at the Last Supper and spoke of being glorified. Jesus' response to St. Peter to the question, "where are you going?" was, "I am going where you cannot follow me now; later on you shall come after me." (John 13:36) Jesus was speaking of His death the next day and His Resurrection and Ascension into heaven. The road to this glorious victory was one of rejection, denial, and crucifixion. In the end St. Peter did follow Jesus into heaven. His death was one of crucifixion also. Not only did he find himself where Jesus said he would follow, he also had to take the same journey of rejection and execution as a criminal.


The Power of God's Welcoming Presence

--From the Pastor's DeskRev. Msgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

Welcome! What a wonderful word to hear from family, friends, and even strangers. That simple word fills us with joy, takes away anxiety, and makes us feel accepted. Today we celebrate Palm Sunday and see the welcome Jesus received when He came into Jerusalem. He was welcomed by the crowds as they paved the way not with a red carpet but with palm branches. His reputation as a preacher, teacher, and healer had obviously preceded Him. But as we saw in last Sunday's Gospel, Jesus knew what was going to happen. He prayed that the Father's name would be glorified. Human glory was seen in the lifetime of some of us when we saw our nation send people to land on the moon and return to earth. Human glory is seen in the wonder of technology that we have with computers and all that they do in so many ways.