December 13 – December 20, 2020
COVID-19 Precautions: Following a November 25, 2020 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court, the Diocese of Buffalo has relaxed restrictions on capacity at worship services. See, Nov. 26 COVID-19 Update. It is no longer necessary to make a reservation to attend Mass at Blessed Trinity.
NEW: Sunday Mass is now being recorded and will be made available for viewing each Sunday after 2pm on a Blessed Trinity YOU TUBE channel. Click HERE to view. If you click “Subscribe” on the YouTube site, you should receive automatic notification each time a Mass recording is posted.
Also, we are now providing personal copies of the Breaking Bread missal for each parishioner who would like one. You may claim yours at church and either take it home or place it in a zip-lock bag and reclaim it when you come again. Paper copies of the bulletin are once again available. Look for them at the middle crossing of the church.
Keep in mind, the dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sunday and on other Holy Days of Obligation remains in effect in our diocese.
Please pray for the health and safety of all in our community.
All in-person meetings and activities remain cancelled until further notice, with the exception of the Food Pantry.
Wednesday, December 23, from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. ~ EXTENDED HOURS ~ Catholic Central Food Pantry in St. Charles Hall
Now operating every other Wednesday (Dec 23, Jan 6, 20, etc.) but with extended hours. Volunteers will distribute pre-prepared bags of groceries.
Tuesday, December 15 at 7:00 p.m. ~ ZOOM Bible Study
The regular schedule for weekend Masses is in effect, and the NEW schedule for daily Mass, as of Monday, November 9, 2020 is: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday & Friday at 11 AM. There will be no Mass on Thursdays.
Sunday, December 13 ~ Mass at 10:00 a.m. – In Memory of Carl and Evelyn Schmelzer (Req. by Mary Karlis) and Blessings on Veronica Iwuchukwu (Req. by Fidelia Ejimadu)
Monday, November 14 ~ St. John of the Cross ~ Mass at 11:00 a.m. – Praying for All Souls (Req. by St. Theresa Parish)
Tuesday, December 15 ~ Mass at 11:00 a.m. – Blessings for Randolph McGhee (Req. by John E. Curtin)
Wednesday, December 16 ~ Mass at 11:00 a.m. – Praying for All Souls (Req. by St. Theresa Parish)
Thursday, December 17 ~ No Mass Scheduled
Friday, December 18 ~ Mass at 11:00 a.m. – Deceased members of the Ryan, Reilly, Reynolds and Pfeiffer Families (Req. by Est. of Mary Reilly)
Saturday, December 19 ~ Mass at 4:30 p.m. – Praying for All Souls (Req. by St. Theresa Parish)
Sunday, December 20 ~ Mass at 10:00 a.m. – Blessings for Robert Kresse (Req. by Jack and Marina O’Donnell)
Lector Schedule ~ Dec 19 – Lorna Cameron; Dec 20: Judy Casassa
A Note from Father Bob ~ ♪ Slow Down, You Move Too Fast ♫ Simon & Garfunkel may have been on to something with their 1966 hit song!
Bishop Robert Barron talks of Advent as a time of “counter-cultural and counter-intuitive vigilance.” This season challenges us to a spirituality and disposition that fights our human tendencies to be “in a hurry, driven, determined, goal-oriented, fast-moving”. Instead, might we be called to a sometimes-uncomfortable-waiting, reflectiveness, silence. Bishop Barron asks some very good questions for all of us to ponder:
Does waiting help us consider if the “track” we are on is “not the one God wants for us”? Does God want us to “seriously reconsider the course we’ve charted, to stop hurtling down a dangerous road”? Are we made to wait “because we are not yet adequately prepared to receive what God wants to give us”? Might God, instead, be leading us to “an expansion of the heart”?
We can ask our own questions, too. What unexpected richness might come from carving out some quiet time in the midst of our usual Christmas preparation rush? What grace might quiet prayer bring our way? How might the usual colored lights, trimmings, tinsel, and seasonal decorations find some added meaning for us as we consider the Christ who breaks into this world as the Light of the World?
What questions might each of us uniquely ask ourselves? Maybe instead of singing along with the “Christmas songs” that started on our favorite radio stations well before Thanksgiving, we might tune in to our own humming of Slow Down, You Move Too Fast (youngsters… YouTube it!) and find that waiting well is one of the greatest gifts of the Season!
. . . Fr. Bob
Job Opportunities at Blessed Trinity ~ We have several part-time positions now available. Are you or someone you know looking for work?
Part-time Administrative Assistant ~ General secretarial-receptionist responsibilities. Weekly church bulletin. Computer competency needed (email, data entry, Microsoft Word, Excel, PDS). Organization skills necessary. Record keeping. Flexible weekday, daytime hours/days.
Part-time General Housekeeping ~ General parish rectory housekeeping; cleaning responsibilities. Occasional laundry. 10-16 hours/month.
Part-time Maintenance Position ~ Jack-of-all-trades; general maintenance/cleaning. Familiarity with light plumbing, electrical, heating. Lawn maintenance, weekday snow removal. 1-2 days/week. Flexible hours/days.
Send applications to Blessed Trinity RC Church, 317 Leroy Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14214 (716-833-0301) or email blessedtrinitychurch [at] gmail [dot] com.
The Bishop has lifted the 25-person maximum for Mass. We may now have 33% of our church capacity in attendance, spaced for social distance. Thus, given the large size of our church, many more may attend. Also, our Sunday Mass is now available on videotape after 2pm that same afternoon. Or at least, that’s the plan. (“Practice makes perfect,” and this web diva is still practicing). To view it, use the link on our home page under “Worship” or the one near the beginning of this post.
From the Loft ~ The Roman Church has been singing the “O” Antiphons of Advent since at least the eighth century. They are the antiphons that accompany the Magnificat Canticle of Evening Prayer from December 17-23. They are a magnificent theology that uses ancient biblical imagery drawn from the messianic hopes of the Old Testament to proclaim the coming Christ as the fulfillment not only of Old Testament hopes, but present ones as well. Their repeated use of the imperative “Come!” embodies the longing of all for the Divine Messiah.
O Wisdom of our God Most High,
guiding creation with power and love:
come to teach us the path of knowledge!
O Leader of the House of Israel,
giver of the Law to Moses on Sinai:
come to rescue us with your mighty power!
O Root of Jesse’s stem,
sign of God’s love for all his people:
come to save us without delay!
O Key of David,
opening the gates of God’s eternal Kingdom:
come and free the prisoners of darkness!
O Radiant Dawn,
splendor of eternal light, sun of justice:
come and shine on those who dwell in darkness and in the
shadow of death.
O King of all nations and keystone of the Church:
come and save man, whom you formed from the dust!
O Emmanuel, our King and Giver of Law:
come to save us, Lord our God!
—From Catholic Household Blessings & Prayers
O Wisdom, O Leader, O Root of Jesse, O Key of David, O Radiant Dawn, O King of All Nations, O Emmanual – come to save us, Lord our God!
. . . Elizabeth Clay
Zoom Bible Study ~ TUESDAY, December 15, at 7pm. It’s not too late to join the conversation as we continue our study of The Acts of the Apostles and explore the beginnings of our Church and the Church of today. We are now reading Chapters 15 and 16. The same link will work for each meeting; click HERE to enter the discussion. If you encounter a problem with the link, use Meeting ID:762 8722 8149 (Pass Code: jLD8Gg). Each session lasts approximately 90 minutes.
Collection for Retirement Fund for Religious ~ The second collection on December 12/13 benefits the Retirement Fund for Religious. Your contributions to this collection provide for the health care and daily living expenses of the members of religious congregations who taught in your elementary school or staffed your high school. They do not receive financial support or retirement benefits from the Diocese of Buffalo, Upon This Rock or the Diocesan Priests Retirement Fund. As a tribute to the many nuns and order priests who have served our diocese for decades, please be generous.
Prayerful thanks to all who have supported the Sodality’s collection for homebound parishioners. Because of your generosity, we will be providing grocery store gift cards to 16 different people, the majority of whom were homebound even before the pandemic. We have also arranged to have a Mass offered for the intentions of 4 parishioners living in senior care facilities. This (Dec 12/13) is the final weekend of our collection. You may place your monetary donation in an envelope marked “Sodality Project” and drop it in the collection basket or give it to Mickey Dick. Checks payable to: Ladies Sodality of Blessed Trinity may also be mailed to Mickey at 2549 Main St., Buffalo, NY 14214. Please know that any contributions arriving too late for this year’s holiday shopping will be saved for Christmas 2021.
A Tribute to Parishioner Robert Kresse: “Mr. Preservation” ~ We are all aware of the tremendous influence our dear parishioner, “Bob” Kresse had on preserving the historic architecture in our community. He touched almost every important restoration project that helped to move our Buffalo/Erie County area forward.
The local press has had wonderful coverage of the numerous projects he championed. But they missed one. In 2014 Blessed Trinity filed an application to the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) for funding to restore our roof and the front steps of the church. Bob casually asked how we were doing in the competition for preservation funding. Not well. He immediately contacted a high-ranking Parks Dept. official with whom he had worked on other local projects, inviting him for an in-person visit to beautiful Blessed Trinity Church. Seeing was apparently believing, with the end result that we were awarded a major matching grant to complete the improvements we needed. The end of this project is this Tuesday, December 15. Thank you, Bob. We could not have done it without you!
Our sincerest condolences to Mary Ann and the whole Kresse family in your loss. We pray for all of you and for the repose of Bob’s soul. He may already be redesigning the Gates of Heaven!
The Giving Tree ~ This year our annual Giving Tree will benefit Little Portion Friary, a resource for homeless men in need of temporary shelter and a meal, as well as counseling and other necessary services. Select an envelope from the tree located near the ramp door. Instead of purchasing the suggested gift item, we ask that you offer the cash value (or a check made out to Blessed Trinity Parish with “Giving Tree” on the subject line) in the envelope. Return the envelope in the collection basket before December 25. Our parish donations are another way we can live out our Mission Statement as a loving community that reaches out to our brothers and sisters in need. Thank you for your participation.
Prisoner Gift Bags for 2021 ~ As reported last month, the Prisoner Gift Project for 2020 is canceled. Yet we can remember our prisoners and get a jump on the 2021 project by decorating gift bags this Christmas Season. Covid-19 restrictions mean we are spending more time inside, so consider using some of your home time to decorate next years’ bags. Bags and directions are available for pick up in the back pew. Please plan to return your bags by the end of January 2020.
Join Our Family Promise Ministry ~ As a shelter for homeless families and recently certified by NYS, Family Promise of WNY is following new health and safety guidelines and cannot accept donations of home prepared meals. Instead, volunteers have become grocery donors in a food category assigned to the day of the week. Blessed Trinity volunteers did this on 9/15 and found it much easier than coordinating and cooking a full dinner. We signed up for a date on the meal schedule and delivered the requested foods during the day at our convenience. We hope more parishioners will be able to participate. Family Promise also needs volunteers in areas like tutoring and transportation. If you think you might want to help and need more information go to their web site at fpwny.org and click on “Get Involved” to find the grocery sign up schedule. Also, you may contact our parish coordinator, Amy Johnson, at 716-836-4694 and join forces with another member of the team.
Is it time to update your contact information? During the past 8 months when the COVID-19 Protocols prevented many from attending church services, the ability to keep in touch by telephone, mail or email took on increased importance. Because not everyone has computer access, really important information is sent in a letter. If you have not received written correspondence from the parish since September 2020, we don’t have your address. 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? (Important, too, for contact tracing). 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 receive the bulletin electronically via email, 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.
Lectors ~ Please pick up your workbooks for the new liturgical year. They are on the first bench on the Baptismal Font side of the church.
Religious education materials are available now. If you were not contacted please call Pat Dyer at 716-256-2598.
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
News from our Vicariate Cluster and the Wider Community
Request from Our Lady of Hope Parish ~ Immigrant family in desperate need of single (twin) beds for 5 children. If you or anyone you know has any to give away, please call Deacon Ron Thaler, 716-553-6203.
The dated announcement below was received before the “yellow/orange zone” changes to pandemic guidelines. It is suggested that you check with the hosting entity before attending.
Fridays and Saturdays November 21 – January 3, 5-9pm ~ Nativity Sets on Display. Fr. Roy Herberger will have 300 (of his 650) nativity sets from 58 countries on display at the Fatima Shrine, Lewiston during their Festival of Lights. Contact Fr. Roy at 716-852-2076 (roy [at] aol [dot] com) with questions.
Alumni of St. Martin of Tours, St. Ambrose, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Teresa, St. Agatha, Holy Family, St. John the Evangelist, Trinity, St. Bonaventure or Notre Dame Academy are invited to share your story with our current students and families via social media. Help us build on the traditions you loved so much while attending Catholic school. Drop us a note at GoodNews [at] NotreDameBuffalo [dot] org.
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.