We Give Thanks To God

‘We Give Thanks to God’

A statement on the Dobbs decision by the Catholic Bishops of New York State

We give thanks to God for today’s decision of the United States Supreme Court in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. This just decision will save countless innocent children simply waiting to be born.

On this historic day, our gratitude extends to the millions of heroic Americans who have worked tirelessly toward this outcome for nearly a half-century. Women and men, children and adults, believers and non-believers, people of every culture and background have advocated for life. They have been a charitable and compelling voice for the voiceless, and today, their voice has been heard.

As Catholics, we have prayed and fasted, held vigils, offered Masses, and peacefully witnessed in these last five decades. We have joined others in educating schoolchildren, opening pregnancy care centers, walking with mothers, offering post-abortion counseling, and marching, year after year, to the United States Supreme Court to witness for life. Today, our voice has been heard.

With the entire pro-life community, we are overjoyed with this outcome of the Court. However, we acknowledge the wide range of emotions associated with this decision. We call on all Catholics and everyone who supports the right to life for unborn children to be charitable, even as we celebrate an important historical moment and an answer to a prayer.

We must remember that this is a judicial victory, not a cultural one. The culture remains deeply divided on the issue, which will be evidenced by the patchwork of state statutes pertaining to abortion across the country. To change the culture and build a culture of life, we need to enact family-friendly policies that welcome children, support mothers, cherish families and empower them to thrive. We outlined our vision for a pro-life New York in our recent statement, available here, and we rededicate ourselves to helping every expectant mother to carry her baby to term.

Building a culture of life is not solely the responsibility of the government or those heroic individuals working on the front lines, in crisis pregnancy centers and other ministries. All of us need to respect the dignity and sanctity of human life in everything we do: in how we treat our children, spouses and parents; in the way we behave in our place of work; in sum, how we live Jesus’ two great commandments to love God and love our neighbor.

Love, charity and reverence for human life from the moment of conception through natural death – these will build and sustain a culture of life.

Millions of Americans have worked tirelessly for almost 50 years towards this outcome. We thank them with every fiber of our being. Their vital work continues, and we commit ourselves to it.

Timothy Cardinal Dolan

Archbishop of New York

Most Rev. Edward B. Scharfenberger

Bishop of Albany

Most Rev. Robert J. Brennan

Bishop of Brooklyn

Most Rev. Michael W. Fisher

Bishop of Buffalo

Most Rev. Terry R. LaValley

Bishop of Ogdensburg

Most Rev. Salvatore R. Matano

Bishop of Rochester

Most Rev. John O. Barres

Bishop of Rockville Centre

Most Rev. Douglas J. Lucia

Bishop of Syracuse

And the Auxiliary and Emeritus Bishops of New York

First Friday & First Saturday Devotions

St. Thomas Aquinas parish offers the Devotion to the Sacred Heart on first Friday’s of the month.
St. Patrick’s offers the Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on the first Saturday’s of the month.

The next First Friday Devotion Friday, April 1st. First Friday Devotional prayers are typically offered after the 10:00am daily Mass at St. Thomas Aquinas but during Lent on April 1st 2022 we will offer the Sacred Heart Devotional Prayers before the 10am Mass so that we can hold Stations of the Cross following Mass. The devotional prayers will begin at 9:30am.

The First Saturday Devotion at St. Patrick’s with the Mount Saint Francis Hermitage Friars on Saturday, April 2nd. The devotion will include:   +  Mass at 8:00am followed by the + Rosary, Talk and Consecration Prayers. Confession will be available.

I adore Thee O most Sacred Heart of Jesus, inflame my heart with the divine love with which Thine own is all on fire!

 O Immaculate Heart of Mary, full of goodness, show your love towards us.!

 

Bishop Lucia Statement on the Ukraine Crisis

Most Reverend Douglas J. Lucia
Bishop of Syracuse

February 24, 2022

Statement on the Crisis in the Ukraine

I join the Roman Catholic faithful of the Diocese of Syracuse in prayerful solidarity with our sisters and brothers of the sovereign nation of the Ukraine.  It is most disturbing and saddening to see a nation which acclaims religious orthodoxy to attack fellow believers in such an aggressive and unjust manner.  Let us pray for a conversion of heart and for an end to what one can only describe as the greatest threat to world peace since the end of the Cold War era.

I express, particularly, to Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuck of Kyiv-Halych, to Archbishop Borys Gudziak of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia and Metropolitan of Ukrainian Catholics in the United States, and to the Latin Rite Archbishop Mieczylaw Mokrzycki of Lviv, the concern and prayers of all Roman Catholics and people of goodwill in central New York.  I ask especially that we join Pope Francis on Ash Wednesday, March 2nd,  in a day of prayer and fasting for the people of the Ukraine and an end to the violence afflicting them.  I also ask that we use the coming days of the holy season of Lent as ones of prayer, fasting, and charitable works to counter all aggression against the sanctity of human life and all the forces which seek to divide the human family.

This Sunday, February 27th, from 2 to 3 pm all are invited to join in person or via livestream in a “Holy Hour for Peace” at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Syracuse.  Also beginning this weekend and throughout the Lenten season I ask that a “Rosary for Peace” be prayed either before or after all Masses in all the parishes of our Diocese.

In truth, this moment is a wake up call for all believers.  If we want to counter the works of evil and sin in our world it must begin with each one of us.: “Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me.”

The Journey Continues ~ Come Holy Spirit Come!

Synodal Listening Sessions Continue!  

COMMUNION—PARTICIPATION—MISSION

If you missed attending the local Synodal Listening Sessions there is still opportunity for you to share your thoughts, joys and concerns… Individual Response Forms are available at the church entrances or visit the Diocesan website for further  information: https://syracusediocese.org/offices/diocesan-synod/

 “…the purpose of the Synod…is not to produce documents, but ‘to plant dreams draw forth prophecies and visions, allow hope to flourish, inspire trust, bind up wounds, weave together relationships, awaken a dawn of hope, learn from one another and create a bright resourcefulness that will enlighten minds, warm hearts, give strength to our hands.’”

 

Bishop Lucia, in his Pastoral Letter , In the Name of Jesus, spoke of our diocesan Mission- “Our Catholic Faith: Know it ­ Live it – Share it” – and the need to look at our Communion as a diocesan Church and how we all can better participate to make the Church’s mission of being a living Gospel come alive.  By journeying together and reflecting together on the journey that has been made, the Church will be able to learn through Her experience which processes can help Her to live communion, to achieve participation, to open Herself to mission. Our ‘journeying together’ is, in fact, what most effectively enacts and manifests the nature of the Church as the pilgrim and missionary People of God.”

The Listening Sessions across the diocese began November 3rd 2021.  The list of sessions which have been scheduled to date is below and the list will be updated each week.  We invite and encourage all who wish to participate in a Listening Session to choose one which fits your schedule…to come and speak freely, boldly and courageously to our Bishop.  Since we are still under COVID protocols, for the protection of all, please wear a mask.

Bishop Lucia will be holding several Listening Sessions in a variety of our diocesan Pastoral Care Areas in preparation for the World Synod of Bishops and the Syracuse Diocesan Synod. These will be opportunities for you to participate in the Synodal Journey by sharing your hopes, dreams, and concerns for the church. Those who are interested but have been away from the church are especially encouraged to come. All are welcome!

To learn about what a SYNOD is view the video at the link : https://youtu.be/qJ1f3ZrTs60

For more information on the Diocesan Synod click the link below: https://syracusediocese.org/offices/diocesan-synod/

For more information on the Global Synod click the link below: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2021-10/pope-francis-discourse-moment-reflection-eve-inauguration-synod.html

On our Knees: United in Prayer and Fasting for the Dobbs Supreme Court Case

The Background:

In 2018 Mississippi passed a law protecting unborn children after 15 weeks of gestation, when a baby has a heartbeat, eyes that open, ears that hear and can move and kick. The law was challenged and the case, known as Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization, is being heard by the Supreme Court.  This is truly a landmark case that could potentially overturn the decision of Roe v Wade. The possibility for future laws protecting the unborn hangs in the balance. The oral arguments will be heard on Dec 1, 2021 but the decision is expected in June 2022.

For the past 49 years, the infamous date of January 22 has been one of solemn prayer and remembrance for the tragedy of legalized abortion in this country.  In these next crucial 9 months

October 2021 until June 2022

 let us make the 22nd of each month a special day of prayer and fasting for the Dobbs case in the hopes that on its 50th anniversary (Jan 22, 2023) Roe v Wade will have been finally overturned!

 

How can your parish or family get involved? 

  • Host a special Mass, Rosary, or Holy Hour for Life on the 22nd of each month. Suggested Prayers can be found here.
  • Limit yourself to one meal and two smaller meals on that day, or fast from social media, videos, music or something else you like on the 22nd of each month.
  • Pray the rosary together with your family or a group of friends for this intention.

 

Prayer for the Supreme Court

Holy Trinity, Source of Life and Truth, we entrust our nation to You. We ask for mercy for the decades of legalized abortion that has been permitted in our land and for healing for all those who have been wounded by it. We ask that the sacredness of every human life would be protected and upheld both in law and in culture. In a special way we commend to you the Justices of the Supreme Court. Please grant them clarity, wisdom, and courage to judge according to truth and right reason. Overthrow, at last, by Your power, the scourge of abortion in our land and usher in a new era of protection for the unborn. By the power of Christ’s Passion, Death, and Resurrection, may Your justice be established on earth. Amen

Immaculata Award honorees celebrated Sun, Dec 5th with Bishop Lucia

Immaculata Award  Recipients

 

Lay Volunteers Kathy Lash of St. Patrick’s and Tim and Eileen Heslin of St. Thomas Aquinas will be honored Sunday, December 5th at The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Syracuse by The Most Reverend Douglas J Lucia.

The Immaculata Awards were established for the 125th Anniversary celebration of the Diocese of Syracuse to honor dedicated lay volunteers. It is meant to recognize those who generously and unselfishly give of themselves to their parishes and whose love for the Church have been shown through their dedication to the Church, local, diocesan and universal.

Thank you Kathy! Thank you Tim and Eileen! for your care of your parish and parish family throughout the years. Your time and efforts are very much appreciated!

 

 

Sr. Briege McKenna, OSC and Rev. Pablo Escriva DeRomani visit Binghamton westside parishes

Sr. Briege McKenna, OSC along with Fr. Pablo Escriva Di Romani
will be in Binghamton New York
Saturday, November 6th – Wednesday, November 10th

General Itinerary:

Sr. Briege will be the featured speaker and
Bishop Lucia will Celebrate Mass for the
Syracuse Catholic Women’s Commission Mini- Conference
Saturday, November 6th 8:30am – 12:30pm
at St. Thomas Aquinas Church
Fr. Pablo will celebrate all the weekend Masses and
Sr. Briege will speak briefly about the Parish Mission
Saturday, November 6th  Vigil Masses –
4pm at St. Thomas Aquinas and 5:15pm at St. Patrick’s

Sunday, November 7th  Sunday Masses
9am & 4pm at St. Patrick’s and the 11am St. Thomas Aquinas

Parish Mission will be held
Monday, November 8th – Wednesday, November 10th 2021
Monday’s Theme: Reconciliation
Tuesday’s Theme: Prayer and the Power of the Holy Spirit
Wednesday’s Theme: The Eucharist—The Source and Summit of our Faith

Each MORNING: 9:30am Rosary, 10am Morning Mass with Mission Talk at St. Thomas Aquinas
Each AFTERNOON: Noon – 6:30pm Eucharistic Adoration in the Church at St. Patrick’s
Each EVENING
: 6:30pm Rosary, 7pm Mission Service at St. Patrick’s
                                                         Monday evening: Mission Talk with Sacrament of Reconciliation
                                                         Tuesday evening: Mass & Mission Talk
                                                         Wednesday evening: Mass & Eucharistic Healing Service

 

What is posted below is taken from article by Michael Kelly  of the Sunday, February 24th 2002 issue of The Universe, Britain and Ireland’s best-selling Catholic newspaper.

The Miracle Life of Healing Sister Briege, OSC

The life story of Sister Briege McKenna is a truly remarkable one. Warned by doctors that she would be confined to a wheelchair by rheumatoid arthritis, she was cured by a miracle. Now she uses her God-given healing powers to help others.

EVERYTHING is possible to God we say – Sister Briege McKenna knows that God can do the impossible. Some believe in the theory of miracles, Sr. Briege believes in the reality of miracles because she sees them happen.

Sr. Briege has seen God intervene in the most remarkable ways since she was healed of crippling arthritis in 1970. Her own healing set her on a path that would take her to the ends of the earth – from huge rallies in Latin America to retreats in remote parts of Korea.

Briege McKenna was born in a remote part of Co. Armagh, Northern Ireland, on Pentecost Sunday in 1946. Briege lost her mother when she was only 13. She remembers it well, “As I cried that night, I heard a voice say, ‘don’t worry, I’ll take care of you’. The next morning I knew I wanted to be a nun,” she says. Briege went on to enter the Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Clare in her hometown. She remembers her first vows vividly, “As I knelt in the chapel, waiting to be called up, I saw Jesus dressed as the Good Shepherd coming to me to take my hand, saying ‘come with me’.”

Briege had several assignments in different convents, but was heartbroken in 1965 when she learned that she had developed rheumatoid arthritis. She went to Florida in 1967 but her condition gradually deteriorated, “I cried with the pain, the doctor said that there was no hope for me and that before long I would be confined to a wheelchair”. Meanwhile Sr. Briege also began to experience immense spiritual pain and dryness. “I even began to ask myself whether I really believed in Jesus,” she revealed. What happened next began a remarkable chapter in the life of this extraordinary woman. Sr. Briege explains: “I attended a retreat in December 1970. I listened to talks on the power of prayer and the power of the Holy Spirit. During the retreat I remember looking at the clock as I closed my eyes. It was 9:15am, December 9, 1970. The only prayer I said was ‘Jesus, please help me’. At that moment, I felt a hand touch my head, I opened my eyes and no one was there, but there was a power going through my body. I looked down. My fingers had been stiff, but not deformed like my feet. There had been sores on my elbows. I looked at myself. My fingers were limber, the sores were gone and I could see that my feet, in sandals, were no longer deformed. I jumped up screaming, ‘Jesus! You’re really here’.” Since that fateful day Sr. Briege has never had arthritis and carries out her ministry with a breathtaking energy and enthusiasm that would leave most people exhausted!

Approval

Doctors are baffled by her recovery, but Sr. Briege needs no explanation. For her it is simply the power of the touch of the healing hand of God. Sr. Briege’s miraculous recovery was just the beginning of a whole new life for her. Not only had she been healed herself, but she had also received the gift of healing, and a powerful gift of insight. Sr. Briege was reluctant to take on a healing ministry, in fact she put the idea completely out of her head-but the Lord will not take no for an answer. She explains: “I was at a prayer meeting, I wasn’t going to talk about healing, but as I got up a lady jumped up and said, ‘Excuse me, Sister, I want to say something. You have the gift of healing. You know about it, but you are more worried about the approval of people than you are about God’s will’. I looked at her and said, ‘I’ve never seen you in my life, who are you?'” The lady had been inspired by the Holy Spirit to reveal what was special about Sr. Briege.

Sr. Briege with Fr. Kevin Scallon, who she often works with

Sr. Briege eventually embraced her gifts and God is doing wonderful things through her. It would be easy to get proud with such gifts, but Sr. Briege keeps her feet firmly on the ground. “I don’t do anything” she says modestly, “it’s all the healing power of Jesus. He’s simply chosen me as an instrument.”

Everywhere Sr. Briege goes she is met by countless people in need of healing. God is blessing people in a very special way through her ministry. Sr. Briege maintains a grueling schedule crisscrossing the globe bringing the power of Jesus to whomever she meets. She is as comfortable addressing an intimate gathering of bishops in Rome as she is addressing thousands of people in football stadiums in Latin America.

In her ministry, Sr. Briege has a special focus on priests. “Because the priesthood is under such severe attack, it needs, perhaps more than ever before, our encouragement and support,” she says.

A lot of Sr. Briege’s work takes her to seminars and houses of formation for young men training to be priests. It is a ministry of comfort, a ministry of confirmation and a ministry of affirmation.

Everywhere she goes is the same; one seminarian described her as “an inspiring signpost pointing to the Lord”.

Sr. Briege, while praying before the Blessed Sacrament had a vision about priesthood. “It was then that the Lord revealed to me that I couldn’t just sit back and criticize the priesthood” she said.

“Actually, in the sacrament of Holy Orders, the priest says yes to God so he can be a priest for me, for you, for every one of us.”

“Jesus led me into what seemed to be a sequence of images appearing over the tabernacle. There I saw the ordination of a priest-through the Lord’s eyes.” “When we look at a tapestry hanging on a wall, we see only the finished results of the labor of the artist. “We do not see all the labor and love that went into its making. However, on the reverse side, we see all the different threads and stitches and labor that went into the making of the beautiful work of art.” “So, too, when we look at a priest, we see the obvious strengths and weaknesses. But we do not see behind the scenes where the Lord has, with love and faithfulness, endowed the soul with a priestly vocation and guided him to ordination. I found myself weeping as I watched the unfolding of this powerful revelation of the priesthood and what it means to a man to be ordained. “I had a sense that everyone in Heaven – Mary, the angels and all of the saints – were praising God’s faithfulness to humanity in his call to men in every age to give them the power to make him present among his people.” “Through this experience, I got a new understanding of the priesthood. I got a new love and a deep reverence for the sacrament of Holy Orders. I came to understand that priests were in need of great prayers, and great consolation.” This started Sr. Briege on her mission to confirm priests in their vocation. “Too often priests get disheartened, they don’t get enough support,” she says. “Priests are human too, and weak, they need our constant help and support.”

Sr. Briege McKenna is a remarkable woman; someone who puts Jesus first in her life, and her great gift is to bring others to Jesus. As she says in her own words: “I am convinced that no one can do more than become a signpost that points to Him, to help others discover Him in their own hearts and permit Him to give them great blessings.” Sr. Briege truly is an outstanding witness to the power of Christ working in the modern world; God is doing great things for his people through her ministry.

Faith Formation 2021-2022 ~ Healthy! Happy! Holy!

The faith formation school year is off to a great start!
Youth Faith Formation K-10th  is being offered in In-Person setting.
If your child is in Kindergarten—10th grade, make sure they are signed up for Faith Formation!

Next classes are scheduled for Sunday October 31st and then November 7th, 14th & 21st with a break for the Thanksgiving weekend. Classes resume Sunday, December 5th. Classes are held at St. Patrick’s in the school after the 9am Mass 10:10am – 11:10am.

Registration Forms for NEW students and Registration Forms for RETURNIING students along with a Faith Formation Schedule for October – January 8th are available at the entrance tables at both parishes. Please know we welcome all families from St. Cyril & Methodious and Holy Trinity.

Don’t forget Sacramental Preparation for your child. Typically 2nd grade is reserved for Reconciliation and First Holy Communion and 10th grade for Confirmation, although preparation actually begins in the prior years– 1st & 9th grade respectively. If your child is out of sequence, no worries we can work with children and their families so that they can make their Sacraments.

For further information or if you are not comfortable with in person learning yet for your child, please contact the Director of Faith Formation, Jeanne Higgins for assistance. We are here to help your family grow in faith!  

 

 

 

 

 

Bio for Sr. Briege McKenna

What is posted below is taken from article by Michael Kelly  of the Sunday, February 24th 2002 issue of The Universe, Britain and Ireland’s best-selling Catholic newspaper.

The Miracle Life of Healing Sister Briege, OSC

The life story of Sister Briege McKenna is a truly remarkable one. Warned by doctors that she would be confined to a wheelchair by rheumatoid arthritis, she was cured by a miracle. Now she uses her God-given healing powers to help others.

EVERYTHING is possible to God we say – Sister Briege McKenna knows that God can do the impossible. Some believe in the theory of miracles, Sr. Briege believes in the reality of miracles because she sees them happen.

Sr. Briege has seen God intervene in the most remarkable ways since she was healed of crippling arthritis in 1970. Her own healing set her on a path that would take her to the ends of the earth – from huge rallies in Latin America to retreats in remote parts of Korea.

Briege McKenna was born in a remote part of Co. Armagh, Northern Ireland, on Pentecost Sunday in 1946. Briege lost her mother when she was only 13. She remembers it well, “As I cried that night, I heard a voice say, ‘don’t worry, I’ll take care of you’. The next morning I knew I wanted to be a nun,” she says. Briege went on to enter the Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Clare in her hometown. She remembers her first vows vividly, “As I knelt in the chapel, waiting to be called up, I saw Jesus dressed as the Good Shepherd coming to me to take my hand, saying ‘come with me’.”

Briege had several assignments in different convents, but was heartbroken in 1965 when she learned that she had developed rheumatoid arthritis. She went to Florida in 1967 but her condition gradually deteriorated, “I cried with the pain, the doctor said that there was no hope for me and that before long I would be confined to a wheelchair”. Meanwhile Sr. Briege also began to experience immense spiritual pain and dryness. “I even began to ask myself whether I really believed in Jesus,” she revealed. What happened next began a remarkable chapter in the life of this extraordinary woman. Sr. Briege explains: “I attended a retreat in December 1970. I listened to talks on the power of prayer and the power of the Holy Spirit. During the retreat I remember looking at the clock as I closed my eyes. It was 9:15am, December 9, 1970. The only prayer I said was ‘Jesus, please help me’. At that moment, I felt a hand touch my head, I opened my eyes and no one was there, but there was a power going through my body. I looked down. My fingers had been stiff, but not deformed like my feet. There had been sores on my elbows. I looked at myself. My fingers were limber, the sores were gone and I could see that my feet, in sandals, were no longer deformed. I jumped up screaming, ‘Jesus! You’re really here’.” Since that fateful day Sr. Briege has never had arthritis and carries out her ministry with a breathtaking energy and enthusiasm that would leave most people exhausted!

Approval

Doctors are baffled by her recovery, but Sr. Briege needs no explanation. For her it is simply the power of the touch of the healing hand of God. Sr. Briege’s miraculous recovery was just the beginning of a whole new life for her. Not only had she been healed herself, but she had also received the gift of healing, and a powerful gift of insight. Sr. Briege was reluctant to take on a healing ministry, in fact she put the idea completely out of her head-but the Lord will not take no for an answer. She explains: “I was at a prayer meeting, I wasn’t going to talk about healing, but as I got up a lady jumped up and said, ‘Excuse me, Sister, I want to say something. You have the gift of healing. You know about it, but you are more worried about the approval of people than you are about God’s will’. I looked at her and said, ‘I’ve never seen you in my life, who are you?'” The lady had been inspired by the Holy Spirit to reveal what was special about Sr. Briege.

Sr. Briege with Fr. Kevin Scallon, who she often works with

Sr. Briege eventually embraced her gifts and God is doing wonderful things through her. It would be easy to get proud with such gifts, but Sr. Briege keeps her feet firmly on the ground. “I don’t do anything” she says modestly, “it’s all the healing power of Jesus. He’s simply chosen me as an instrument.”

Everywhere Sr. Briege goes she is met by countless people in need of healing. God is blessing people in a very special way through her ministry. Sr. Briege maintains a grueling schedule crisscrossing the globe bringing the power of Jesus to whomever she meets. She is as comfortable addressing an intimate gathering of bishops in Rome as she is addressing thousands of people in football stadiums in Latin America.

In her ministry, Sr. Briege has a special focus on priests. “Because the priesthood is under such severe attack, it needs, perhaps more than ever before, our encouragement and support,” she says.

A lot of Sr. Briege’s work takes her to seminars and houses of formation for young men training to be priests. It is a ministry of comfort, a ministry of confirmation and a ministry of affirmation.

Everywhere she goes is the same; one seminarian described her as “an inspiring signpost pointing to the Lord”.

Sr. Briege, while praying before the Blessed Sacrament had a vision about priesthood. “It was then that the Lord revealed to me that I couldn’t just sit back and criticize the priesthood” she said.

“Actually, in the sacrament of Holy Orders, the priest says yes to God so he can be a priest for me, for you, for every one of us.”

“Jesus led me into what seemed to be a sequence of images appearing over the tabernacle. There I saw the ordination of a priest-through the Lord’s eyes.” “When we look at a tapestry hanging on a wall, we see only the finished results of the labor of the artist. “We do not see all the labor and love that went into its making. However, on the reverse side, we see all the different threads and stitches and labor that went into the making of the beautiful work of art.” “So, too, when we look at a priest, we see the obvious strengths and weaknesses. But we do not see behind the scenes where the Lord has, with love and faithfulness, endowed the soul with a priestly vocation and guided him to ordination. I found myself weeping as I watched the unfolding of this powerful revelation of the priesthood and what it means to a man to be ordained. “I had a sense that everyone in Heaven – Mary, the angels and all of the saints – were praising God’s faithfulness to humanity in his call to men in every age to give them the power to make him present among his people.” “Through this experience, I got a new understanding of the priesthood. I got a new love and a deep reverence for the sacrament of Holy Orders. I came to understand that priests were in need of great prayers, and great consolation.” This started Sr. Briege on her mission to confirm priests in their vocation. “Too often priests get disheartened, they don’t get enough support,” she says. “Priests are human too, and weak, they need our constant help and support.”

Sr. Briege McKenna is a remarkable woman; someone who puts Jesus first in her life, and her great gift is to bring others to Jesus. As she says in her own words: “I am convinced that no one can do more than become a signpost that points to Him, to help others discover Him in their own hearts and permit Him to give them great blessings.” Sr. Briege truly is an outstanding witness to the power of Christ working in the modern world; God is doing great things for his people through her ministry.

The Call of Sr. Briege McKenna, OSC

Sr. Briege McKenna, OSC is a delightful Sister  in the Order of Saint Clare with a delightful Irish brogue .
Sr. Briege has traveled the world with her message to priests and with the message of God’s healing love.
Sr. Briege was open to and heard her vocational call at a relatively young age.

Click the links below to hear Sr. Breige tell about her call to religious life.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JxjLJwfd2nE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EsH7PM_palU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pjLCw1kcnRY

Bishop Lucia Announces Establishment of Shrine

OFFICE OF THE BISHOP

August 6, 2021
Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord

Dear Diocesan Family,

Grace and peace to you! As I observe this Sunday, August 811\ my second anniversary as your bishop, and as we enter into endeavors which can only proceed and flourish through much prayer, I wish to announce the establishment of one of our churches as a diocesan shrine, setting it aside to be a place of pilgrimage and prayer for all people of the diocese and beyond. In this place, Masses will be offered in both the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms and Eucharistic Adoration will be available, as will the Sacrament of Penance. Furthermore, individuals and parish groups alike from throughout the Diocese of Syracuse and even beyond will be able to journey to this place to find spiritual renewal and solace.

The Church’s Code of Canon Law instructs us that:

Can. 1230 – By the term shrine is understood a church or other sacred place to which numerous members of the faithful make pilgrimage for a special reason of piety, with the approval of the local ordinary.”

Can. 1234 § 1. – “At shrines the means of salvation are to be supplied more abundantly to the faithful by the diligent proclamation of the word of God, the suitable promotion of liturgical life especially through the celebration of the Eucharist and of penance, and the cultivation of approved forms of popular piety. §2. Votive offerings of popular art and piety are to be kept on display in the shrines or nearby places and guarded securely.

In light of Can. 1234 §2, our new diocesan shrine will also become the home for the Shrine of St. Theresa of the Child of Jesus that was formerly housed at Munnsville. The church that has been chosen is already known for its aesthetic beauty and architectural value and has been for the last year a home for the Latin Mass community of the Diocese of Syracuse.

On Sunday, August 15th, the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, I will inaugurate the new Diocesan Shrine of St. Mary of the Assumption at 103 W. Seventh Street in Oswego, NY. I will offer a 9:00 am Sung Mass in the Extraordinary Form on that day at the new shrine which will be followed by the recitation of the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. At 12 Noon, I will celebrate the first “Pilgrim Mass” as a concelebrated Mass in the Ordinary Form inviting clergy and lay faithful to join us in the solemn inauguration of this house of prayer for all people of our diocese. This will be followed by a reception and all are invited to share in this joyous celebration.

I am pleased to announce that Rev. James Schultz, who has been the pastoral administrator of St. Mary’s

Church, will become the first pastor of the new shrine church. In addition, he will serve also as the pastor of Transfiguration Church in Syracuse and as my delegate to the Latin Mass community. He will administer the shrine with the help of a Board of Directors that will consist of myself as the Diocesan Bishop, Vicar General Rev. John Kurgan, Pastor of the shrine Rev. James Schultz, Pastor of Christ the Good Shepherd Parish in Oswego Rev. John Canorro, the two civil trustees of St. Mary’s Parish, and five other members appointed after further consultation.

In addition, in accordance with Canon 1232 § 1, the shrine will be governed by statutes approved by the Ordinary of the Diocese which will determine its purpose, the authority of its pastor, and the ownership and administration of the shrine’s temporal goods. A regular schedule of Masses, Confession, and other devotions has been approved by me and will soon be announced. Each Sunday at the shrine, the 9:00 am Mass will be celebrated in the Extraordinary Form and at 12 Noon there will be a Pilgrim Mass in the Ordinary Form that may be celebrated/concelebrated by priests with pilgrim groups or by Fr. Schultz or another assigned priest.

St. Mary’s Church is keeping its designation as a personal parish to facilitate the celebration of the Sacraments in the 1962 Rite for those persons who have joined the parish by adscription (registration) in order to be part of the Latin Mass community. Besides participating in the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, these parishioners have the right to receive all the Sacraments of the Church and the Rite of Christian Burial according to the ritual books of 1962. As such, it is the responsibility of the pastor of St. Mary’s Church to ensure that proper catechesis has been given and the sacramental registers are kept up to date.

For members of the Oswego community who are now members of Christ the Good Shepherd Parish, but who formerly belonged to St. Mary’s Church before the merger, it is permissible to ask for the celebration of Marriages and Funerals at your former parish in the Ordinary Form. However, Baptism, First Communion, and Confirmation may not be celebrated in the Ordinary Form at St. Mary’s without permission of the Diocesan Ordinary, but rather should usually take place in the candidate’s proper (home) parish.

I give thanks to God that this next step in our pilgrimage as a diocesan Church can be realized, but I recognize also it is a work in progress, so please be patient. Another goal has been to provide appropriate pastoral care to the faithful of the Diocese of Syracuse who desire for their spiritual good to avail themselves to the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and the Sacramental rites of the 1962 Missal and Ritual. With this in mind, and in light of Pope Francis’ recent apostolic letter, Traditionis custodes, I make the following designations for the care of the faithful:

  • St. Mary of the Assumption, Oswego – a personal parish for the Latin Mass Community
  • Transfiguration, Syracuse-a new home for the Latin Mass community of the City of Syracuse

and its environs to be cared for by Fr. Schultz and moved from the Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Syracuse

  • Our Lady of Good Counsel, Verona – dispensation given for Sunday Mass at 8:00 am in theExtraordinary Form
  • St. Mary of the Assumption, Binghamton – dispensation given for monthly Sunday Mass in the extraordinary form

I know there is a lot contained here. May our efforts to boost our spiritual lives and that of our diocesan Church bear much fruit.

In the Name of Jesus,

Most Reverend Douglas J. Lucia

Bishop of Syracuse