August 2 – August 9, 2020
The Celebration of 10 A. M. Mass on Sunday has resumed.
Sunday services resumed on June 21, 2020; daily and Saturday Masses, meetings and activities are cancelled until further notice, with the exception of the Food Pantry.
Wednesday, August 5, from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. ~ EXTENDED HOURS ~ Catholic Central Food Pantry in St. Charles Hall
Now operating every other Wednesday (August 5, August 19, Sept 2, etc.) but with extended hours. Volunteers will distribute pre-prepared bags of groceries.
Monday, August 10 at 6:30 p.m.
Sunday, August 2 ~ Mass at 10:00 a.m. – Intentions of Blessed Trinity Parishioners (Requested by the Parish)
The celebration of Daily Mass for the public has not yet resumed at Blessed Trinity. Daily Mass readings for the week of August 2 are available on the website of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops by Clicking HERE. Select the desired day on their Roman Liturgical Calendar, and the text of the readings for that day will appear.
Sunday, August 9 ~ Mass at 10:00 a.m. – Intentions of Blessed Trinity Parishioners (Requested by the Parish)
Lector Schedule ~ August 2: Don Williams; August 9: Sr. Liz Savage
News from our Parish Community
Second Collection on August 2 is for the Retired Diocesan Priests Medical Benefits Fund. Please be generous.
Landing on Holy Ground ~ On Tuesday night, July 28, the recently rebuilt plaza in front of Blessed Trinity Church sustained substantial damage when a driver heading west on Leroy lost control of his vehicle and crashed through the retaining wall on the east (ramp) side of the church. The car became airborne, landing on its roof in the center of the plaza near the street-level stairs. By the grace of God, the driver and passenger were able to walk away and the church itself does not appear to have been damaged. The accident has been reported to the driver’s insurance carrier, and masons who performed earlier work will be returning to estimate the time and cost involved in restoring the area once again. On Friday, July 31, the diocesan Division of Buildings & Properties sent two gentlemen who did a masterful cleanup job. It is once again possible to enter the church through the front doors, but please resist the urge to “explore” cordoned off areas. We appreciate your cooperation in preventing accidental injury.
#One Body ~ On Monday, August 10, 2020 from 6:30 to 8pm, you are invited to join in the next gathering of #OneBody via Zoom conference call.
#OneBody began during the racially intense aftermath of the death of Trevon Martin, the summer of 2016. Three predominantly racially homogeneous parishes, under the pastoral leadership of Rev. Ron Sajdak, originally participated: St. Martin de Porres, Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and St. Lawrence.
The purpose of #OneBody is to heal racism, one heart and one mind at a time. The healing process consists of prayer and candid conversations about racism in our Church and society, and conversations about conversion/the eradication of racism or antiracism.
The call-in time is 6:15pm. For additional information and to obtain the Zoom conference call link please contact Althea Porter at althea [dot] porter50 [at] gmail [dot] com or call 716-316-8395.
A Reflection on Lives Lost ~ Father Malcom Guite, the Anglican poet-priest from Cambridge, England wrote this in his blog for May 29, 2020. It is even more poignant now that the death toll in the U. S. has passed 156,000. “I am thinking of my American friends today as the tragic death-toll from the virus there passes 100,000. These are mind numbing numbers and only the exercise of compassionate imagination can give us even a glimpse of the harrowing personal stories behind each one. When I began to hear our statistics mount on our own evening radio news, I found myself again and again in prayer, knowing that even though I only heard the numbers, God knew and loved and died for the people behind those numbers.” The following poem is from the concluding section of his Quarantine Quatrains.
At close of day I hear the gentle rain
Whilst experts on the radio explain
Mind-numbing numbers, rising by the day,
Cyphers of unimaginable pain
Each evening they announce the deadly toll
And patient voices calmly call the roll
I hear the numbers, cannot know the names
Behind each number, mind and heart and soul
Behind each number one belovèd face
A light in life whom no-one can replace,
Leaves on this world a signature, a trace,
A gleaning and a memory of grace
All loved and loving, carried to the grave
The ones whom every effort could not save
Amongst them all those carers whose strong love
Bought life for others with the lives they gave.
The sun sets and I find myself in prayer
Lifting aloft the sorrow that we share
Feeling for words of hope amidst despair
I voice my vespers through the quiet air:
O Christ who suffers with us, hold us close,
Deep in the secret garden of the rose,
Raise over us the banner of your love
And raise us up beyond our last repose.
Family Promise of WNY ~ Blessed Trinity has partnered with Family Promise (formerly Interfaith Hospital Network) as a support congregation since 1994 when the agency first established a presence in Western New York. Having just completed renovations to their facility on Hickory Street, Executive Director Luanne Firestone was happy to take parish team members Amy Johnson and Mickey Dick on a guided tour. The renovations are impressive, especially the addition of bedrooms, bathrooms, and individual family cupboards, all designed with COVID-19 protocols in mind. When they are able to resume intakes this month, they will do so with double the capacity as “a safer, more private and more comfortable shelter” for temporarily homeless families. Their anticipation is heightened as they brace for the housing crisis that they know is coming with the lifting of the current NYS eviction moratorium. New meal guidelines will make it easier for parish partners, like Blessed Trinity, to provide dinners for guest families. If you are in a position to assist us with dinner drop-offs, please contact Amy Johnson at 716-836-4694. To learn more about Family Promise of Western New York, Click HERE.
Know Your Faith: What is a disciple? My brother’s family is part of a religious organization that frequently asks, “Are you a disciple?’ All of us here should be able to answer with an emphatic, “Yes!” A disciple is one who follows and studies another – in our case that is Jesus. If one studies Jesus, one will learn to love him, follow him and become apostles for him. Our goal is to be able to say with the surety of the evangelist Mark who opens his gospel (good news,) “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ the Son of God.”
So come along with me on this weekly journey to get to know Jesus. The Mass is divided into two major but equally important parts: Liturgy of the Word and Liturgy of the Eucharist. It is in the Liturgy of the Word, where we first become disciples. Every Sunday, we hear several readings from Sacred Scripture proclaimed. You might take advantage of this time of “no worship aids” in the pews to listen a little more closely to the lector and priest as the readings are proclaimed. A bishop, priest or deacon will “open” the scriptures for us with his homily. During the sacrament of ordination, a bishop calls upon the Holy Spirit to come upon the man to be ordained so that he will proclaim authentically the Word of God. For some of us the words of the homilist will provide comfort and for others they will disturb our comfort – calling us forth to more. To know more, to hope more, and to do more. Let us ask ourselves, “What is God calling me to do today?” Additional opportunities are available on the Faith Formation Page of our website.
Fun Fact: Have you heard that Catholics do not read the Bible? Did you know that Catholics who attend Mass daily hear every word of the Bible every three years?
…Patricia Dyer, MAPM
Pastoral Associate and Religious Education Coordinator
Gardening Angels ~ We extend prayerful thanks for Judy Casassa who has devoted many hours to maintaining the garden on the east (ramp) side of the church, and to Bud and Mickey Dick for their work on the planters in front of church and the “Mary grotto” garden.
Have your responded to the 2020 Census? It is a once-in-a-decade chance to inform how billions of dollars in federal funding are allocated for critical public services. The current corona virus pandemic should certainly enforce in our minds how crucial such funding can be. Census statistics are used to determine the number of seats each state receives in the U.S. House of Representatives, and will also have an impact on planning and funding for health clinics and highways, fire departments and disaster response, education programs such as Head Start and college tuition assistance, and so much more. The Diocese of Buffalo has joined other faith communities and civic organizations in encouraging all people in our community to participate. If you have not yet returned the census form mailed to you in March, you may receive a home visit from a census worker who will be carrying official identification and census forms. Please cooperate as he/she is there to help make sure you and your family are counted. If you have internet access, go to 2020census.gov and complete the census online. If you do not have a computer, you can go to any branch of the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library and ask for assistance with the online census form.
Sunday Mass Under Re-Opening Guidelines ~ Our church resumed Sunday services on June 21. We hope those of you who have been able to return are satisfied with our efforts to welcome both parishioners and visitors while keeping everyone safe. If you will be joining us for worship for the first time since March, please know that we are observing guidelines as required by the Diocese of Buffalo and/or the State of New York. When inside the church, everyone over the age of 2 is required to wear a mask. (You are expected to bring your own mask or face covering. If you forget, an usher will supply one). Hand sanitizer is available at each of the church entrances.To maintain social distancing, some pews are “off limits.” Families and couples may sit together; unrelated individuals must sit 6 ft. away from each other. Copies of Breaking Bread have been removed, and there can be no music sheets or bulletins. Congregational singing is discouraged (except in our hearts). Please follow the lead of our ushers when it is time for Communion and dismissal at the end of Mass. We appreciate the fact that you are all anxious to see each other, but to protect everyone’s health please refrain from shaking hands or hugging. If you wish to visit (from an acceptable distance), please wait until you are outside and do not congregate in the vestibules.The church will be sanitized before we gather again each Sunday. We hope that everyone joins in worshiping as community this Sunday, but please remember that — for now — there is no obligation to do so. If you are not feeling well or are just uncomfortable being in a group setting, please remain at home. Those of us who are lucky enough to attend will continue to pray for everyone who cannot be physically present.
The 2020 Catholic Charities Appeal concluded on June 30, falling $1.6 million short of its $10 mill goal. Deacon Steve Schumer, president and chief executive officer of the agency however, chose to see the positive aspects of having reached 84% of the goal “given everything going on….” Although Catholic Charities is a separate non-profit, human services agency, its fund raising was impacted by reaction to the diocesan bankruptcy filing and the coronavirus pandemic which shut down parish life and church services during the height of the annual appeal effort. In an article published in The Buffalo News on July 9, Deacon Schumer admitted that Catholic Charities “was facing a ‘perfect storm’ in that the need for its services grew because of the pandemic, while revenues to fund those services were hampered by the pandemic and a continued erosion of the agency’s tradition donor base, Mass-going parishioners.” In the early days of the pandemic before federal government made additional food stamps available, the News reported that the “agency’s food pantries were inundated.” Now it is “trying to handle an uptick in requests for counseling and mental health services, and Deacon Schumer admits the agency “will have to ‘make some difficult decisions’ to address shortfalls….” It is never too late to make a contribution to Catholic Charities. You may mail a donation to their office, 741 Delaware Ave., Buffalo, NY 14209, Attn: Appeal Department, or make an online donation at:https://www.ccwny.org/donation. Bob Heicklen, the appeal chair for our parish, will be happy to accept a contribution in any amount. If your pledged during the early days of the drive, please remember to honor your pledge.
Regular Office Hours ~ We are happy to report that the parish has been able to resume regular office hours. Our secretary, Pat Pendleton, will be in the office every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10:30am-2:30pm.
Rosary Video for All Ages ~ Our pastoral associate and director of religious education, Pat Dyer, would like to share her YouTube video on The Rosary. The opening portion of her video was made with the children in mind, so be sure they join in.
Do you miss being at church? Of course long-time parishioners can probably close their eyes and picture the view from a favorite pew. But if you are not yet able to be physically present, it is possible to make a virtual visit. Buffalo Rising and Explore Buffalo teamed up to give their online followers a “tour” of Blessed Trinity. You can join them, by Clicking HERE. You will be treated to both exterior and interior photos and more than a little history. Take the “tour” and test your knowledge about your house of worship.
Is it time to update your contact information? During the past 4 months when the COVID-19 Protocols prevented us from attending church services, the ability to keep in touch by telephone or email took on increased importance. Even though we are now able to resume Mass attendance, this may be a good time to ask yourself: Does the church office have my correct mailing address and phone number? Have I shared my email address? Make sure that we have been notified of any changes in your contact information by completing this form. This is also a chance to let us know if you: wish to be included in our online email list, register as a parishioner, or request envelopes. You can also submit the requested information by phoning our secretary at 716-833-0301 any Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday between 10:30am and 2:30pm; sending an email to blessedtrinitychurch [at] gmail [dot] com; or using the contact feature below to submit the information. If you choose either of the last two, please use “Contact Update” as the subject of the email or message.
Home Visits ~ Because of the COVID-19 protocols, Father Victor has had to discontinue his “last Friday” visits to homebound parishioners. However, if someone is ill and in need of Last Rites, please call him at the rectory.
News from our Vicariate Cluster and the Wider Community
Orientation for Spiritual Exercises in Daily Life, Wednesday September 16 at 7pm. An 8-month program at St. Michael Rectory (651 Washington Street in Buffalo). Applications (visit SpirExlgnatius.org) are due September 1. Find out more by calling Joseph Ritzert at 716-627-5530 or Fr. Len Kamiensky SJ at 716-854-6726.
Help for Victims of Domestic Violence ~ Because of COVID-19, the Family Justice Center (“FJC”) is not accepting walk-in appointments or in-person meetings. In case of emergency, call 911. For help with safety planning or other services you may need during this time, call or text the FJC Safeline, 716-558-SAFE (7233).
Food Assistance for Seniors ~ The County of Erie advises anyone over the age of 60 who is in need of food assistance to call 716-858-8526.