June 27, 2021

A Letter from our Pastor

Dear friends,

I hope all is well with you and yours.

It’s time for a few updates as we emerge from our long Covid “nightmare”.

The Diocese has approved the lifting of all seating restrictions in the church other than reasonable social distancing among non-family groups and individuals.

The mask or face covering requirement is lifted. Vaccinated persons need not wear masks, and others may or may not according to their comfort level. This is on the “honor system” and we will not be acting as monitors or “cops” in this regard.

The Parish Center is available for more events, but on a case by case basis depending on actual need and the degree of relevance to the parish or the Church’s life.

We can take a pardonable pride in that through it all St. Matthew’s Church was open for private and group prayer and Baptisms and Funeral Services were always available as needed.

Altar Servers, Lectors, and Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion are once again active, though of course reflecting changed circumstances and actual need.

Religious Education is active and preparing for next Fall’s “kick off”.

Adult Catholics who need to make up or initiate their Sacraments are invited to call the Parish Office. They will be contacted by Deacon Carmine De Stefano who has been an immense help even more this past year.

Also, thanks are due to so many of you who have maintained your financial support to St. Matthew’s even from a distance.

Of more direct interest to all, is that the Bishop has announced a return to the regular obligation binding upon all Catholics over the age of reason ( age 7) to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation as of Sunday, August 15th, the great Feast of Our Lady’s Assumption.

This obligation has been suspended since the beginning of March 2020 and its restoration will, I know, be a call to conscience for many.

(As always, those who are ill, or who feel themselves especially vulnerable to possible  infection and illness of whatever kind, are by the law itself, validly excused.)

As always, I am mindful of you in my prayers and Masses and especially for those who were in any way affected by this pandemic.

God’s blessings,
Father Robert Hewes
Pastor

June 27, 2021

Movie Recommendation: Roe v Wade

April 20, 2021

Dear Pastors,

Please consider promoting the Roe v. Wade movie in your weekly bulletins, websites, social media, etc.  Archbishop Naumann, Chairman of Prolife Activities for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, has said:

“I encourage you to see this film. With some of the artistic liberties of the movie industry, the film provides insight into the cultural circumstances that resulted in the Court decision that led to more than 62 million American children killed by abortion over the past 48 years.” 

We agree. And so, the Office of Human Life, Family and Bioethics, has a special webpage through which the movie can be ordered at a special 35% discount through April 30 (and is available to watch, unlimited, for 30 days after ordering).

www.DRVCLife.org/movie

In a nutshell, the main reasons to see the movie:

  • It is likely in the near future that Roe v. Wade will be challenged in the courts and/or there will be federal legislation proposed to codify the ruling, so this is a good opportunity to learn about this landmark decision and initiate conversation about it.
  • It brings awareness to the strategy used to change the culture in 1970 which is similar to that being employed now to influence current day cultural issues (e.g. gender ideology).
  • It depicts the conversion of Bernard Nathanson and offers an example of the power of redemption, particularly relevant during the Easter Season.

In addition, on Thursday, May 27, 2021, at 7:00 p.m. we will be hosting a one-hour live Q&A session with the producer/director/actor, Nick Loeb, by Zoom which we hope will increase interest in seeing the movie, too.

 

June 27, 2021

The ‘Equality Act’ Discriminates

February 25, 2021

The ‘Equality Act’ discriminates against people of faith
and threatens unborn life.
Tell Congress you oppose it!

Everyone deserves to be treated with respect and dignity. The so-called Equality Act, which is being voted on in the U.S. House of Representatives soon, in many ways does the opposite and needs to be opposed. Instead of respecting differences in beliefs about marriage and sexuality, the Equality Act would discriminate against people of faith.

The Equality Act would: punish faith-based organizations, such as charities and schools who serve everyone in their communities, simply because of their beliefs; force girls and women to compete against boys and men for limited opportunities in sports, and to share locker rooms and shower spaces with biological males who identify as women; risk mandating taxpayers to fund abortions; force people in everyday life, and especially health care workers, to support gender transition; and expand what the government considers a “public” place, forcing even some parish halls to host functions that conflict with Catholic beliefs.

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops have made it easy to let your members of Congress know that you oppose the so-called Equality Act.

Visit the USCCB Action Center, enter your information and an email will be sent on your behalf. To read more about the Equality Act visit https://www.usccb.org/equality-act

June 27, 2021

The “Fifth Columnist”

Dear Friends,

Eighty-five years ago a term entered the language that enjoyed a long vogue. In 1936, during the Spanish Civil War, a general laying siege to Madrid was asked how many columns (of troops) he had. He replied that he had four columns outside the city, but a “fifth column inside.”

He meant a secret force of sympathizers and guerillas who would aid him from within the besieged city. Continue reading “The “Fifth Columnist””

June 27, 2021

Septuagesima

Dear friends,

As we all know today,”recycling” is a common practice. Our Lord once said that “The scribe learned in the Law can bring out of his storehouse things both old and new.” I composed the following article some years ago. With some minor modifications, I place it before you again for your consideration. Continue reading “Septuagesima”

June 27, 2021

Must Catholics Refuse?

Must Catholics refuse a COVID-19 vaccine made with a cell line from an abortion?

In the wake of announcements from multiple pharmaceutical companies about safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines, many are expressing ethical doubts about whether it is OK to take these vaccines. Do Catholics have a moral duty to decline an inoculation if it was unethically produced using a cell line that came from an abortion?  Read more…

June 27, 2021

Parish Office Hours

The receptionist desk will be “womanned” Monday through Thursday from 9 AM to 1 PM for routine Parish business and Mass Cards.  On Friday there will be more limited service.
Please call ahead when in doubt.  631-499-8520.

Important Telephone extensions for general non-emergency messages:

Parish Secretary: 126
Parish Business Manager: 113
Religious Education (CCD): 128
Pastor: 130

For urgent calls for Last Rites or a similar emergency:
631-912-5955

Contact information regarding Funerals is on the Parish Voice Mail phone greeting  631-499-8520.

As before, please enter the Parish Center through the Main Entrance only, not the Gym Entrance.

 The Main Entrance is between the shrines to Sts. Padre Pio and Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

The inner doors to the building are to the right. Please note the sign to ring the bell for admittance.

June 27, 2021

Mass Intentions & Mass Cards

Mass Intentions and Mass Cards are available on a limited basis.

The Parish Office will be open for Mass Cards Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9 AM to 12 Noon.