May 1, 2020

Dear Friends,

While our “shut down” continues, the life of the Church continues in restricted circumstances. We have a tentative date of May 15th for some sort of “re-opening” but I would not be surprised if that does not mean a full return to large gatherings and normal church services.

We have been doing Funeral Blessings for the deceased outside the church on the way to the cemetery with the family present these past weeks as requested.

Our weekend Eucharistic Holy Hours on Saturday from 3 to 4 pm and Sunday from 11am to 12 noon continue and draw a devoted corps of attendees for private prayer, communal prayer and Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament. These devotions will be enhanced beginning this weekend by our Music Director and cantor.

Future celebrations of Confirmation and First Holy Communions can not be scheduled as yet, but background planning is going on.

I would very much like to thank those who have generously contributed by mail and via online giving ( these past several weeks. As you can see from our online bulletin the parish’s income is drastically affected.

However, I am conscious that many of you could also say the same thing about your income as well. However, please consider maintaining as best you can your support for St. Matthew’s Parish.

We begin May, Mary’s Month. We entrust ourselves, our parish, and our society to her intercession. She has so many beautiful titles that Christian piety has given her over the ages, among them Health of the Sick; Comfortress of the Afflicted; Help of Christians, Our Lady of Perpetual Help. The latter is a special favorite of mine in that I was baptized in “OLPH” in South Ozone Park and grew up in OLPH in Lindenhurst.

Though public Masses have been suspended since March 17 (!), the priests have been offering Masses privately. I have made it my personal responsibility even more to make sure all the promised Announced Mass Intentions have been offered. We will also still offer the Novena of Masses for Mothers’ Day as usual. If you wish to enroll your mothers in these Masses please mail in, or drop off your envelopes or do so through your  Faith Direct account.

I remember all of you in my private Masses and in the daily praying of the Divine Office. Please God, in the words of an old ballad, We’ll meet again!

As ever, in Christ,

Father Hewes