St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
October 16
St. Margaret Mary Alacoque (1647-1690) is depicted on the left in this painting at The Sacred Heart Altar on the right side of our church. “Christ appeared to her in 1673-75 to request efforts to spread devotion to his Sacred Heart to overcome the ‘coldness, neglect, and indifference’ of so many people to God’s message of love revealed in Christ.” (Rev. Walter Kern’s Guidebook to Blessed Trinity R. C. Church, page 28).
Photo credit: Margaret Dick

October 11 – October 18, 2020

Weekly Activities

All in-person meetings and activities remain cancelled until further notice, with the exception of the Food Pantry.

Tuesday, October 13 at 7:00 p..m. ~ ZOOM Bible Discussion

Wednesday, October 14, from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. ~ EXTENDED HOURSCatholic Central Food Pantry in St. Charles Hall
Now operating every other Wednesday (Sept 30, Oct 14,Oct 28, etc.) but with extended hours. Volunteers will distribute pre-prepared bags of groceries.

Mass Intentions

The regular schedule for weekend Masses is in effect, but there is a temporary change in the daily Mass schedule. There will be NO daily Mass or communion service on Tuesday-Thursday this week (Oct 13-15), but a Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday, Oct 16, at 11 AM. A communion service will take place at 11 AM on Tuesday-Friday of next week (Oct 20-23). Daily Mass will resume on Monday, November 2, with a special 7 PM Mass for All Souls Day. Going forward, the NEW schedule for daily Mass will be Monday-Wednesday & Friday at 11 AM. There will be no Mass on Thursdays.

Sunday, October 11 ~ Mass at 10:00 a.m. – Eternal Rest for Edward Schroeder (Req. by Franciscan Sisters) and Healing for Heather Randolph (Req. by Judy Casassa)

Monday, October 12 ~ No scheduled service

Tuesday, October 13 ~ No scheduled service

Wednesday, October 14 ~ St. Callistus I ~ No scheduled service

Thursday, October 15 ~ St. Teresa of Jesus ~ No scheduled service

Friday, October 16 ~ St. Hedwig; St. Margaret Mary Alacoque ~ Mass of Christian Burial for Marcus Porter at 11:00 a.m.

Saturday, October 17 ~ St. Ignatius of Antioch ~ Mass at 4:30 p.m. –  Intentions of our Blessed Trinity Parishioners (Blessed Trinity Parish)

Sunday, October 18 ~ Mass at 10:00 a.m. – Deceased Members of the Ryan, Reilly, Reynolds, and Pfeiffer Families (Req. by Estate of Mary Reilly)

Lector Schedule ~ Oct 11: Pam Zanghi; Oct 17: Greg Gaglione; Oct 18: Bob Heicklen

Rev. Robert Gebhard

News from our Parish Community

Our parish community welcomes Rev. Robert L. Gebhard, Jr. as our temporary administrator, while sending prayers and best wishes to our former administrator, Rev. Victor Ibhawa.

A Message from Father Gebhard:

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 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

A New Night and Time for Zoom Bible Study ~ Our ZOOM Bible Study now meets every other TUESDAY at 7pm. The next session will be October 13. 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. 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). The next session is scheduled to last approximately one hour; we will be discussing Acts:7-9. Those without computers might consider social distancing with a friend (wearing masks). Call Pat Dyer at 716-256-2586 for additional information.

Wold Mission Sunday ~ October 18 is World Mission Sunday. “On Mission Sunday, everybody remembers, prays, gives; but on EVERY DAY of the year, the missionary remembers, prays, gives.” On October 17/18, a contribution of just $4 enclosed in your World Mission Sunday envelope will enroll you as a member of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith for the coming year, entitling you to share in the benefits of 15,000 Masses said annually by missionaries throughout the world. Please give generously, and remember to support these same missionaries by praying daily: one Our Father, one Hail Mary … “St Francis Xavier, pray for us.”

Bishop Edward Scharfenberger

Diocese Embarks on “Road to Renewal” ~ The Catholic Faithful, priests, deacons, religious, parish administrators and school leaders of the Diocese of Buffalo have embarked on a journey to reinvigorate Catholic faith, more fully optimize parish and diocesan resources, and increase the impact of our varied ministries throughout Western New York. READ Bishop Scharfenberger’s September 19, 202 Letter to the Faithful about the Road to Renewal.

The Road to Renewal process is aimed at delivering recommendations to Bishop Scharfenberger regarding how parishes can better partner together to share resources, pull together capabilities and ensure greater impact.To that end, Bishop Scharfenberger has assembled a Diocesan Renewal Task Force (DRTF) to manage the process.Their scope is to review our current realities (mass attendance, parish financials, school attendance and financials, etc.) and collect input from people throughout the Diocese.

If you wish to contribute to the discussion, start by Clicking HERE and take an anonymous survey now available online.

We thank our parishioners who participated in the October 1, 2020 Vicariate ZOOM Session with other parishes* in our Northwest Central Buffalo Vicariate

As indicated on the diocesan web site: “There are no pre-determined conclusions to this process and we seek broad input and candid discussion in order to define options that  will ensure a stronger, more sustainable model of Catholic life and ministry in Western New York.” The site also states that “[t]he task force is not a decision-making group, “ and that “[a]ll decisions are reserved to the Bishop is his canonical role.”

November 30, 2020 is the date for the delivery of recommendations from the Task Force to the Bishop, and no actions will be taken before that date. Bishop Scharfenberger will receive the recommendations and reserves the right to further consult with additional groups.

You can learn much more about The Road to Renewal at

Reflection on the readings for the 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time: Is 25:6-10a; Ps 23:1-3a, 3b-4, 5, 6; Phil 4:2-4,19-20; Mt 22:1-14

It is amazing to read a few words and have those words trigger a strong memory. As I reflected on the passage from Isaiah I was taken back in memory to a sharing in Savannah, GA with Sr. Anna and others in the early 90’s. Sr. Anna was transfused with joy as she spoke of this passage from Isaiah as revealing the heart of God’s relationship with God’s beloved people. Beginning on a mountaintop where God and humans can be closest, this reading’s verses then continue to give us the experience of the world that God has always wanted for us: a world of a banquet for humanity where no one is hungry; a world of life, where death has no power or reality; a world of healing love and relationship. These few sentences reveal God’s heart to us.

The Responsorial Psalm verses of Psalm 23 repeat the belief and message that God is faithful at all times. Acknowledging our own fragile reliability, we marvel at God’s constancy accompanying us separately and together through the ups and downs of life. Our current national and world situations impel us to reach out to the one who loves us and heals us and to reach out to one another as members of the same flock.

Paul, from his prison cell in Philippi, waiting to go to his death in Rome, assures us of God’s faithful presence in his life and in ours. Paul’s reassurance that he “can do all things in the one who strengthens” him is in contrast with the sentence that follows. He is deeply touched, moved by the simple kindnesses given to him on this his last journey.

And then we hear proclaimed another parable which recalls the scene in the Isaiah passage. The king invites people to a banquet. Who would not want to come? And yet we hesitate, make excuses, decline the invitation until, to our disbelief, the host of the banquet extends the invitation to anyone who will come. The condition for attending is that the guest observe the simplest of courtesies and come dressed for the banquet. No free lunch this. No come one and all picnic. This is a feast and even though the time before the feast is brief, one must not just show up ready to eat but be prepared for an experience of love and generosity that transforms.

In these politically charged times, we ask ourselves who is being invited to fuller life, who is being invited to know the bounty which freedom gives IF one is ready, if one is prepared to sacrifice for the good of all. Maybe, in our case, it is not so much a case of just putting on the festal garment but also of taking off the blinders that prevent us from seeing one another, our sisters and brothers.

Let us open our ears and our hearts to God’s invitation. It is not too late to attend the banquet. It is not too late to join hands and hearts with God and with our friends and enemies in recreating this world in the image of the banquet to which God invites us all.

Sr. Mary Laura Lesniak, SSNM

Religious education materials are available now. If you were not contacted please call Pat Dyer at 716-256-2598.

Know Your Faith: “Splinters and Beams” ~ There is a Facebook post that has been shared a good deal recently, perhaps you have seen it: 

“A young couple moved into a new neighborhood. The next morning while they were eating breakfast, the young woman saw her neighbor hanging the washing outside.‘That laundry is not very clean, she doesn’t know how to wash correctly. ‘Perhaps she needs better laundry soap.’ Her husband looked on, remaining silent. Every time her neighbor hung her washing out to dry, the young woman made the same comments. A month later, the woman was surprised to see a nice clean wash on the line and said to her husband, ‘Look she’s finally learned how to wash correctly. I wonder who taught her this?’ The husband replied, ‘I got up early this morning and cleaned our windows.’ And, so it is with life … what we see when watching others depends upon the clarity of the windows through which we look.” (Attributed to Paulo Coehlo).

When we talk about sin and forgiveness we often think of forgiving the ones who have harmed us in some way. But God’s take on things is just a bit different. “‘What are the steps to forgiveness?’ you may ask. It begins with God’s reconciliation, and with us not as the agents but as the recipients of God’s reconciliation and forgiveness. The problem is that quite often we do not see anything wrong with us. We think the problem is that other guy. But we ourselves have needed that forgiveness, and it has been given to us as a gift.”

This need to look critically at ourselves first should not be new or surprising. In the Gospel attributed to Matthew we see very directly that need. “Why do you notice the splinter in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove that splinter from your eye,’ while the wooden beam is in your eye? You hypocrite, remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter from your brother’s eye.” (7:3-5).

In recent weeks, during our Bible Study, we have noted times which forced us to look at ourselves critically – an examination of conscience. Once a pastor received an email from a regular parishioner who was angered by one of the Mass petitions which asked God to help us to overcome our personal biases. It seems that this parishioner did not believe that they had any personal biases to overcome. It is for us to seek understanding through prayer and study, to ask forgiveness of God and those we have harmed, and to make amends. And, when we find serious sin, we are obligated to confess those sins to a priest and ask for forgiveness. Those opportunities are available to us through scheduled private confession and periodically scheduled Reconciliation Services.   

St. Francis Xavier
(1506-1552), the famous Jesuit missionary to the Far East.
St. Francis Xavier, pray for us.
Photo credit: Margaret Dick

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.

News from our Vicariate Cluster and the Wider Community

Open House at Canisius High School ~ Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday October 17, 18, 20: Open House at Canisius High School (1180 Delaware Ave., Buffalo). Register at Entrance and Scholarship Examination will be given Saturday November 21 at 8:30am ($20). If interested, call Office of Admission at 716-200-0208.

HOPE IN THE DARKENESS, a program about Depression & Suicide in a Pandemic. Wednesday, October 28, 6:30 – 8 pm. Are you or someone you know suffering from anxiety or depression in these Covid days? Don’t know where to turn for emotional or spiritual help? Help parishioners cope and manage their mental health with their Catholic faith. Join Catholic psychotherapist Dan Lawson Live and Livestreaming at St. Martin of Tours (1140 Abbott Road in Buffalo). Q & A will be offered. This event is FREE. Call 716-823-7077 or register and find Livestreaming on St. Martin of Tours Buffalo Facebook. For more info visit or contact diacono [at] stmartinbuffalo [dot] com.

Saturday, October 31, 2020 is the deadline for responding to the 2020 Census. If you have not yet participated, please do so on Online by visiting: or by phone: 844-330-2020. The form contains 9 basic questions, only takes a few minutes to complete, and helps our community receive the federal funding it needs for the next 10 years. (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). The data helps communities respond to natural disasters and secure funding for hospitals and fire departments, resources that are especially important amidst the current coronavirus crisis. The results also show where communities need new schools, new clinics, new roads, and more services for families, older adults, and children, as well as determining the number of seats each state has in the House of Representatives.We thank the office of Representative Brian Higgins for providing this timely reminder and these helpful links.

National Elections ~ If you are nervous about voting in person on November 3, the Erie County Board of Elections wants you to know that the COVID-19 pandemic is an acceptable reason to request an absentee ballot. Applications for an absentee ballot are already available. Click HERE to see what is involved. Early Voting will take place from Saturday, October 24 through Sunday, November 1 at 37 different locations and the offices of the Board of Elections at 134 West Eagle Street, Buffalo, NY. There will be at least one site in each ward in the City of Buffalo. Click HERE to find an early voting near you. If you have any questions, or to offer your services as a poll worker, call 716.858.8891.

Grief Sharing: a supportive group when you have lost someone dear. Begins Wednesday, October 21, 6:30-8pm, Our Lady of Pompeii Parish Ministry Center, 129 Laverack Avenue at Sheldon, Lancaster, NY. Meetings in person or by ZOOM, depending on coronavirus regulations in place at the time. For additional information and registration, call Sr. Joyce King, 716-683-6522, ext. 103.

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.