October 2016 E-Newsletter

October 2016

In this issue:

  • Rosary Society Communion Breakfast
  • Blessing of Animals
  • E-Newsletter at Two Years
  • School Pictures
  • Saint Luke Stained Glass Window
  • October – The Month of the Rosary
  • All Saints Day and All Souls Day
  • Upcoming Events

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Rosary Society Communion Breakfast

Monsignor Thomas Nydegger
Monsignor Thomas Nydegger speaking
at the Saint Thomas Rosary Society Breakfast

The Rosary Society hosted their annual communion breakfast that was open to all parishioners on Saturday October 1. The day began with Monsignor Thomas Nydegger, Vicar General for the Archdiocese of Newark, presiding over the 8:30AM mass concelebrated with our pastor Father Charles and parish priest Father Anton.

Monsignor spoke about the first reading from the end of the Book of Job. Job had a good relationship with God prior to his difficulties in life, but Job also had an even closer and trusting relationship with God after his trials and his questions to God. Even though Job questioned God, he still trusted God and provides an example for us in our lives today. October 1st is also the Church’s feast day of Saint Therese of Lisieux. Saint Therese was only 24 when she passed away, however her faith and love of God not only had the Church recognize her as a saint, but also as one of the thirty-three Doctors of the Church. Monsignor Nydegger said her self-described “little way of spiritual childhood” can be very useful to us today as we often describe our lives as complex and busy, yet God is nonetheless present with us. Both Job and St. Therese had encountered God and that experience guided their lives. As Catholics living today we too have had an experience of God and we need to share it with others. He concluded his homily with “Do what comes naturally – Love.”

A wonderful breakfast followed in Herron Hall that included fruit, bagels, muffins, French toast, bacon, sausage and eggs. After the feast Monsignor Nydegger spoke about “Mary – Mother of Mercy” because this year is the Jubilee Year of Mercy. He described the primary events where Mary is present in the Gospel, that is in the Infancy Narratives in Matthew and Luke and during Jesus’ passion. Many of the events of Mary’s life apart from the Gospels comes from the Church’s tradition. Some prayers that we can say to Mary are the Hail Mary, Memorare, Salve Regina, and Hail Holy Queen. We also know about Mary from her many appearances including Lourdes, Fatima, and Guadalupe. These visions of Mary include a message of God’s love and mercy and that God is extending them to the world.

Monsignor covered the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe and Juan Diego in the sixteenth century. Apart from the roses in the mountains in Mexico in December and the image of Mary on Juan Diego’s tilma (i.e., his cloak), part of the miracle is that it helped to convert so many to Catholicism. Monsignor concluded by encouraging all of those present to be signs of God’s love and mercy in today’s world by articulating our faith and the importance of our relationship with God. Our experience of God and relationship with God is not just something for ourselves, but something we share with other so they can hear about God’s love, mercy and compassion.

A special thank you was given to the Rosary Society leadership team who organized the event – Judy Nitkowski, Michelle Catona, Debbie Walsifer and Valerie Jones.

Blessing of Animals

Blessing of Animals

The annual tradition of blessing animals in honor of Saint Francis took place on October 2nd in the parking lot of Saint Thomas. Parishioners and neighbors brought a variety of pets from dogs, cats and birds to be blessed by Deacon Tom and Deacon Al. Deacon Al wore his Noah’s Ark deacon stole featuring a variety of animals that he only uses at baptisms and the blessing of animals. Marian McGinty led those present in singing the prayer of Saint Francis “Make Me a Channel of Your Peace”. A passage from Genesis 2:19-20 was read describing the creation of animals to benefit humankind and followed by Psalm 8 “O Lord, our God, how wonderful Your Name in all the earth!”

Deacon Al said a prayer that included “God we thank you for their companionship and unconditional love. We pray that you keep our pets safe from illness, injury, and harm. And help us to have the same joy filled spirit that Saint Francis has for all of creation.” Deacon Tom concluded the prayer with “May God, who created the animals of this earth as a help to us, continue to protect and sustain us with the grace His blessing brings, now and forever,” after which everyone responded “Amen.”

The owners and animals lined up two-by-two for their individual blessing with holy water. Many stayed around to mingle with their new two-legged and four-legged friends.

St. Thomas E-Newsletter at Two YearsThank you for reading our Electronic Newsletter and supporting your parish.

See a slideshow of some of the many pictures and events at Saint Thomas the Apostle Church and School in Bloomfield New Jersey.

Blessing of Animals










STA School Pictures
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Rosary Society Breakfast





Feast of St. Luke. October 18th

This stained glass window is located in the sanctuary at St. Thomas the Apostle.
St. Luke, a physician himself, is the patron saint of physicians. He was a friend of St. Paul, and is author of the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles. According to tradition, St. Luke died in Greece at the age of 84. In art, he is represented by ox because his gospel begins with the account of the priest Zechariah sacrificing in the temple.

October – The Month of the Rosary:

In the 1200s Mary appeared to St. Dominic in a vision and gave him the powerful prayer of the Rosary. The lower stained glass windows in the nave of St. Thomas focus on the Joyful, Sorrowful and Glorious mysteries of the Rosary. Use the links below to view the stained glass windows mysteries of the rosary and the theological virtue (faith, hope and love) associated with each.


All Saints Day – Tuesday November 1, 2016

The Church honors all the saints of heaven–God’s holy ones–those known and unknown to us. This solemnity celebrates all who have been examples of faith throughout the ages, those whose lives mirrored the Paschal Mystery of Christ. As we heard in the Proclamation of the Date of Easter on Epiphany, it is in the lives of the saints that the Church proclaims the Passover of Christ. Today’s solemnity honors all the saints, in particular those who are not individually recognized throughout the year.
Masses at 7:30AM, 11:30AM and 7:30PM.
Click Here for list the artwork of Saints we have at St. Thomas.

All Souls Day – Wednesday November 2, 2016 – All the Faithful Departed

As we remember our faithful departed in the month of November, we must remember that our prayers for the dead bind us to them in the communion of faith and life promised by Jesus to all who believe in Him. All Souls day is a commemoration of all those who have fallen asleep in Christ marked with the sign of faith and who, we pray, may one day join the saints around the great banquet table of the Lamb. We pray for the dead; we pray for the forgiveness of all their sins; and we pray that God, in his great mercy, will take them to himself.
Please pray for those deceased members of our parish family. The following links are to the bulletins with the names of deceased parishioners from the previous years.
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