April 2018 E-Newsletter

April 2018

In this issue:

  • Care For Our Common Home – Solar Energy
  • Easter Season
  • Feast of Saint George
  • Feast of Saint Mark
  • Ascension Thursday – May 10th
  • Pentecost – May 20th
  • Pictures – School, Holy Thursday, Easter Vigil
  • Upcoming Events


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Care For Our Common Home – Solar Energy

Pope Francis says in his encyclical Laudate Si: “There is an urgent need to develop policies so that in the next few years, the emission of carbon dioxide and other highly polluting gases can be drastically reduced, for example, substituting fossil fuels and developing sources of renewable energy.”

On February 28, 2018 the Care for Our Common Home Team hosted a power point presentation and discussion by the Bloomfield Citizens Solar Campaign: “Powering Our Common Home—the Use of Solar Power.” Solar generated electrical power (photovoltaics) is an efficient and money saving way to provide electricity to schools, churches, businesses, homes and public buildings. Tens of thousands of dollars can be saved by using photovoltaic electrical power. Rooftops are the usual place for residential photovoltaic installations – you’re probably seeing more of these in your neighborhood. School rooftops are also perfect places for solar. Canopies over parking lots are another great location, since the canopy will not only provide a cover for cars but will lower the amount of plowing, salt use and runoff from the parking lot. With New Jersey ranking in the top 5 states using photovoltaics (number 2 in the USA for school solar installations), solar electrical installation also continues to provide hundreds of jobs to local New Jersey residents.

Part of the presentation listed documented cost savings that users of photovoltaics have achieved, including Ridgewood School System, the Wayne School System, the Secaucus School System, William Paterson University, Temple Ner Tamid in Bloomfield, and Park United Methodist Church (Education Building) in Bloomfield. The Bloomfield School System and the Township of Bloomfield are currently considering solar installations for some of their facilities. Park Methodist Pastor Joel Hubbard said: “We put 90 solar modules on our education building that will generate nearly 100% of the electricity that our church uses each year. All around, it is a win-win for our budget, for our planet and for future generations”

Homeowners also see savings from solar electric; the two main ways photovoltaic installations are done on homes are either outright purchase (homeowner pays for the system and installation) or by a leaseback program (solar company owns the system, repair and maintain the system, and the homeowner gets the use of the solar electric generated by the system). There are pros and cons to each method, but most homeowners use the second (leaseback or PPA-Power Purchase Agreement) program due to high initial costs of owning the system, plus the responsibility to maintain and repair the system if you own it. Either way, the homeowner saves on electrical power usage and has the satisfaction of following Pope Francis’s teaching.

Some online resources for more information on solar electrical include NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratories) www.nrel.gov and Project Sunroof Solar Calculator www.google.com (type in project sunroof) –which can calculate how a solar electrical installation could work for your particular building or parking lot. This link will take you to the video of the Bloomfield Solar Citizens Campaign presentation for the Township of Bloomfield http://vp.telvue.com/preview?id=T00304&video=324000.

If you would like to find out more about this solar electric presentation, or find out more about local groups (churches and schools) using solar electric, please contact Joyce Cupoli 973-699-7268.

St. Thomas 300 Club Raffle

St. Thomas the Apostle and your Finance Committee invite you and your friends to participate in our 300 Club.  Only 300 tickets available, each ticket costs $100.

The Raffle will be held Wednesday May 23, 2018
Prizes are as follows:
1st Prize – $10,500 or 35% of tickets sold
2nd Prize – $3,000 or 10% of tickets sold
3rd Prize – $1,500 or 5% of tickets sold
Click here for the 2018 STA 300 Club form

Easter – The 50 Day Long Feast

Alleluia! Alleluia! He is Risen!

The fifty-day feast of Easter developed from the harvest feast of ancient Israel known as “Shavuot,” or the “Feast of Weeks.” It was a period of seven weeks (a “week of weeks”) plus one day, beginning with Passover and concluding with the fiftieth day, the day of Pentecost. The fiftieth day marked the end of the barley harvest and included an offering of the first fruits. By the time of Jesus, this festival also had become a celebration of the giving of the Law on Mount Sinai.

The themes of harvest, Exodus and the Law also became part of the Christian celebration. Christians celebrated the Passover of Jesus through death to new life and the Covenant that was established in him. Images of Christ as paschal Lamb and as first fruits are the earliest Easter images used by St. Paul.

Easter was the first of our feasts to develop beyond the weekly Sunday celebration. This fifty-day period of rejoicing seems to have been adopted by all Christian communities by the second century. Within a few centuries, however, the unity of the feast began to weaken, and the resurrection, the ascension, and the descent of the Holy Spirit began to be celebrated separately. Easter and Pentecost became two separate days rather than the two names for the same fifty-day period. Only in our own time has the unity of this celebration been reestablished, at least in the liturgical books. The pastoral challenge is to reestablish it in the minds and hearts of the parish, and the best way to do that is by celebrating the whole feast well.

Saint George – Feast Day April 23rd

St. George was a Christian soldier who was martyred in Palestine in the fourth century. Although very little is known of his life, legend says that he rescued a King’s daughter from a dragon, and because of his faith in fighting the dragon, many people believed in Christ and became baptized.

Stained Glass Window is located with the lower windows in the Mary Queen of the Universe Transept.

Saint Mark – Feast Day April 25th

St. Mark, author of the second Gospel, was a member of the early Christian community in Jerusalem. He was a friend of St. Peter and St. Paul, and was a cousin of St. Barnabas. According to tradition, St. Mark became a leader in the Church of Alexandria in Egypt. In the ninth century, his relics were brought to Venice where they rest in the beautiful Cathedral of St. Mark. In art, St. Mark is depicted as a winged lion. It is believed that he wrote his Gospel, the first to be written, about thirty years after the Resurrection of Jesus.

Stained Glass Window is located in the Sanctuary.

Ascension Thursday – May 10th

40 Days after Easter. This year it is celebrated on Thursday, May 10, 2018

A Holy Day of Obligation

Masses 7:30am, 11:30am & 7:30pm

Readings for the Solemnity of the Ascension

Solemnity of Pentecost – Sunday May 20, 2018

For the Jewish people, Pentecost was a feast of thanksgiving that marked the conclusion of the grain harvest; it was also a time to commemorate the giving of the law at Sinai. It was celebrated 50 days after Passover. For the first Christian believers, gathered to celebrate this feast in Jerusalem, the giving of the Holy Spirit reinvented Pentecost. It marked a new beginning: God would be present among his people not in words carved in stone, but in a whole new way, living in their hearts, and speaking through them. Just as the old feast was a time to celebrate the abundance of God’s gifts by giving back to God the first fruits of the fields, so the new Pentecost celebrates the incredible abundance of God’s giving, the many gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Pentecost is “the joyful conclusion of the Easter season” (Proclamation of the Dates of Easter on Epiphany). It ranks with Christmas, Epiphany, and the Ascension (see General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar,59). It is a day to pull out all the stops, a day for incense, processions, banners, for creative expression of the truth we celebrate: the gift of the Holy Spirit has been given to us. Jesus is here!

Pentecost is 50 Days after Easter and is known as the birthday of the Church. This year it is on May 20, 2018.

Click Here to read about Pentecost in the Bible (Acts 2)

The stained glass window is from St. Thomas the Apostle Church in Bloomfield, NJ.


Click/tap an image for a larger view

School Photos
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Dan Schutte Concert and Day of Reflection

Holy Thursday

Easter Vigil