Diocesan Celebration of the Life of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.
January 17, 2021
Photo credit: Phil Woods


January 17 – January 24, 2021

COVID-19 Precautions: 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: In addition to in-person worship, weekend Masses are now being livestreamed on our Facebook page: Blessed Trinity R. C. Church. Click HERE to view. (If you “Like” and “Follow Us” on Facebook, you should receive notification when future Masses are posted). Later in the day, a recording of the Mass is available on YOU TUBE.

Personal copies of the Breaking Bread missal are available 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 also 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.

Weekly Activities

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

Wednesday, January 20 from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. ~ EXTENDED HOURSCatholic Central Food Pantry in St. Charles Hall
Now operating every other Wednesday (Jan 20, Feb 3, etc.) but with extended hours. Volunteers will distribute pre-prepared bags of groceries.

Wednesday, January 20 at 7:00 p.m. ~ ZOOM Parish Council Meeting

Tuesday, January 26 at 7:00 p.m. ~ ZOOM Bible study: the Acts of the Apostles (chapters 17 & 18)

Photo credit: Duane Held


Mass Intentions

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 morning Mass on Thursdays.

Sunday, January 17 ~ Mass at 10:00 a.m. – Blessings for Robert Kresse (Req. by Madonna Hartzell)

Monday, January 18 ~ Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Observance ~ Mass at 11:00 a.m. – Praying for the deceased members of the Ryan, Reilly, Reynolds, and Pfeiffer Families (Req. by Estate of Mary Reilly)

Tuesday, January 19 ~ Mass at 11:00 a.m. – Special Intentions of Cortez and Jessie Wells (Req. by Your Parish Family)

Wednesday, January 20 ~ St. Fabian and St. Sebastian ~ Mass at 11:00 a.m. – Praying for All Souls (Req. by St. Theresa Parish)

Thursday, January 21 ~ St. Agnes ~ No Mass scheduled.

Friday, January 22 ~ Mass at 11:00 a.m. – Praying for All Souls (Req. by St. Theresa Parish)

Saturday, January 23 ~ St. Vincent and St. Marianne Cope ~ Mass at 4:30 p.m. – Praying for All Souls (Req. by St. Theresa Parish)

Sunday, January 24 ~ Mass at 10:00 a.m. – Blessings for Carl Barone (Req. Grace Schaefer and Ann Chriscitiello)

Lector Schedule ~ Jan 23: Lorna Cameron; Jan 24: Judy Casassa

Tabernacle figure of Melchizedek, who offered a sacrifice of bread and wine in Gen 15:17-24.
Photo credit: Margaret Dick

News from our Parish Community

Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance ~ The annual Mass honoring Dr. King is Sunday, January 17, at 11:30am. This year’s tribute by the Buffalo Diocese is taking place at St. Anthony Parish (306 Ingham Avenue in Lackawanna). The theme of the celebration is “Called by God to Serve,” and our newly installed bishop, Most Rev. Michael W. Fisher, is the principal celebrant. The guest speaker will be Sister Roberta Fulton, SSMN. The Mass is being livestreamed on several platforms such as YouTube and Facebook because of COVID-19 restrictions. E-tickets were required for those attending in person.

Pat Pendleton

Staff changes ~ This week we are pleased to welcome Barb Sercu back as our parish secretary. Unfortunately, it means saying good-bye to Pat Pendleton who has served admirably in this position for more than four years. Because of the diocesan restrictions on gatherings, parishioners are unable to extend best wishes to her in person. However, Pat has written the following farewell message to us:

“I have enjoyed getting to know many of you during these past four years as Church Secretary, but I am now returning the position back to Barbara Sercu, who was here before I arrived at Blessed Trinity. Welcome Barbara! I look forward to a new phase of life living outside the city where Lake Erie is just blocks away and I might see a few deer in my yard now and then.”  Pat Pendleton

Wednesday, January 20 is Inauguration Day. Please pray for President-Elect Joseph Biden, Vice-President Elect Kamala Harris, and the blessings of peace, prosperity, and good health for all our citizens.

Parish Council Meeting on Wednesday, January 20, beginning at 7pm in the parish Zoom Room.

Friday, January 22 is a Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children. 

Zoom Bible Study resumes on Tuesday, January 26 at 7pm. We are now reading Chapters 17 and 18 of the Acts of the Apostles. 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.

If the weather or COVID or illness is preventing you from joining us in person, you can watch our weekend Masses LIVE on Facebook at 4:30 PM on Saturdays and 10:00 AM on Sundays as well as all Holyday Masses.  If you miss us LIVE, you can check out the recording later on YouTube.

Know Your Faith: Shepherd’s Pie                                                          

The Feast of the Three Kings is one of the oldest of Christian celebrations dating back to the third century. This time of year, we cannot escape the idea of gift-giving with store advertisements, magazines replete with projects and Santa Claus everywhere. There is a funny joke about the visit of the Three Kings that goes something like this: Three Wise Women would have asked for directions before they left for Bethlehem, arrived on time, assisted at the delivery, cleaned the stable and brought a casserole. It is funny because, from my perspective as a 21st century wife, mother and grandmother, I can see the need for those things.  I have difficulty understanding the value of the Biblical gifts of gold (kingship), frankincense (deity and prayer), and myrrh (death and burial). These were however, beyond their symbolism, gifts of monetary value and may have financed the escape to Egypt.

So, then, what is a gift? It is ourselves, freely given, to the needs of another – not from our excess but from “our poverty.” (Mk 12:44)  Not from what we think they want, but what they need. God’s greatest gift to us is Jesus (not exactly the Messiah people expected); our greatest gift to God is our charity toward others. You will recall that Catholic Social Teaching (CST) has “two feet” – Charity and Justice. In my search for a good definition of charity I found several and only one of them mentions money at all. Indeed, the Greek word agape is translated as charity. Pope Benedict XVI, in Caritas en veritate (2009), defines charity as the heart of the Church. He uses several scripture references to help us understand the importance of our charity toward one another. Jesus taught that “‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mk 12:31.) St. Paul’s classical description of love includes the phrase “(love) … does not seek its own interests.” (1 Cor:13:5.) “Without truth,” wrote Benedict, “Social action ends up serving private interests.” (Caritas 6).

When we marry, we give ourselves freely to another for our whole lives. That is the promise also made by a priest to the Church or by a woman or man entering a religious order. These promises are not conditional. Charity is love, our gift of ourselves freely given to the needs of another. It is also the greatest gift that we can give to God for it is all that we have.

One aspect of CST that we will discuss in the future is the need to welcome strangers. There is an excellent article in America magazine that might interest you about the Holy Family. It can be found with this link.

Interior restoration ~ Now that repairs to the tile roof of the church — part of our grant project — have been completed, restoration of interior art work and repairs to the ceiling of the church have begun. The placement of scaffolding for this project is extensive, so whether you are watching our livestreamed video or attending in person, you won’t be able to avoid it. The work is expected to continue into March 2021. If all goes as planned, it will be completed before Easter. As you enter the church, please be very aware of your surroundings and open to alternative seating if your pew of choice is now unavailable.

The Challenge of “De-Decorating” ~ Nothing is as expected these days, including the task of taking down the church Christmas decorations. The volunteers who arrived on Monday evening, January 11, certainly never expected to be working around scaffolding, both above their heads and beneath their feet. We owe a special debt of thanks to a small but nimble crew who handled it all without complaint. When you see Nik & Tom Brodfuehrer; Bud & Mickey Dick, Alan Frank, Ellen Duffy, Amy Johnson, Dorothy Manuppelli, Kathy Press, Richard Stroh or Pam Zanghi, offer a word of thanks and praise.

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.

Prisoner Gift Bags for 2021 ~ We are asking those who volunteered to decorate gift bags for the 2021 Prisoner Project to return them (decorated or not) by January 31. You may place them in the box in the back pew. Thank you for donating your time and talent to continue Sr. Karen’s work of mercy.

Members of the Ladies Sodality are reminded that membership runs with the calendar year, and 2021 dues are payable in January. They are still only $5 unless you are already a “Life” member (age 80 or above), in which case you are exempt. You may give them to our membership chair, Mickey Dick, or mail them to her at 2549 Main St., Buffalo, NY 14214. Membership is open to all women of the parish, and new members are always welcome.

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 twice during December, 2020 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 take advantage of this simplified protocol and become part of our Family Promise team. 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 9 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. 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 ~ If you have not yet done so, 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

“I will give thanks to you, O Lord, with all my heart, … in the presence of the angels I will sing your praise.” Ps 138:1
Angels in Vincent Mondo’s murals on either side of the Sanctuary express attitudes one should have toward the Eucharist, including praise, thanksgiving, and petition.
Photo credit: Duane Held

News from our Vicariate Cluster and the Wider Community

Live-Streamed Daily Mass from Christ the King Church ~ Until further notice, all Masses from Christ the King Church in Snyder will be Live-Streamed at ctksnyder.org/camera-live-stream. Mass times are as follows: Saturday Vigil Mass at 4:30 pm, Sunday at 8 & 10 am, Monday-Friday at 8 am, Monday & Wednesday at 5 pm.

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.