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Saint Ignatius Loyola
Hicksville, New York
Est. 1859

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December 30, 2012

December 30,2012
Feast of The Holy Family of Jesus,
Mary and Joseph
St. Ignatius 2012

Our American culture ends Christmas on December 25th. How many radio stations play Christmas music on the 26th? The Church however, is just beginning its Christmas celebration. We celebrate Christmas until the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord (Jan 13,2013). During this time, there are feasts that help us focus on how the Incarnation of God becoming human has made a difference in our lives. They are The Holy Family, Mary, the Holy Mother of God (New Years’ Day) and the Epiphany.

Before we start putting those Christmas decorations away, may we take the time to reflect on what the birth of Christ means to us. What does it mean to live as a family of Nazareth? The spirit of Christmas should remain in our hearts long after
the day itself.

Two weeks ago, we were devastated by the shootings of 20 children and 8 adults in Newtown, CT . One can only remain speechless at such a violent act. Many people ask, “Where was God during this act?” God was there, but God allows for free will. Even though we have faith, we will still experience suffering. But, with God we are
not alone! Paul Claudel, a theologian, wrote that “Jesus came not to take away our suffering but to fill it with His presence”.

As we conclude the year of 2012, I offer you some beautiful photos where Christ has been present in our parish this past year. It is up to us with God’s grace in 2013, the Year of Faith, to let God’s presence grow stronger.

Happy New Year!

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families.
St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

December 23, 2012

4th Sunday of Advent
Mic 5:1-4a;Heb10:5-10;Lk1:39-45
Christmas Day
Is 9:1-6;Tit2:11-14Lk 2:1-14

We have now entered into the final week of the Advent Season. This is the shortest of the four weeks since Christmas begins at 4pm on December 24th this Christmas Eve.

The readings speak for themselves as to the greatest event that could ever happen to the human race, our God has come to be with us.

For centuries, different religions have taught that they have a special relationship with the gods. They have made sacrifices and they have prayed to them in a variety of ways. Many have stories of how they had visions of the gods.  The Jewish and Muslim faiths had Abraham, Moses and the prophets who brought the world closer to the one and true God. Abraham was spoken to by the Lord and began to fulfill a promise that God would save His people forever. Moses brought forth the 10 Commandments which had the fingerprint of God. He along with the Israelites, carried the presence of God in the Ark of the Covenant. This had been the closest God had been with His people until He came through His Son Jesus Christ as fully God and fully Man on that first Christmas Day.

We as Christians are the first and only faith that can say that God has both blessed His people and shown up in visions of people. God has become His people in and through the Son, Jesus Christ. Christmas means that God not only created space and time; God entered us by inserting Himself through humanity becoming our flesh and blood, our kin, our child, our teen, and adult. This gives us great joy and hope, because everything we are experiencing now, God has been through. No other faith or religion can claim this as their own.

As we journey with Mary, Joseph, and the shepherds to Bethlehem, may we rejoice that the Lord has come to save us from sin and death and ultimately from our very selves. Listen to the voice of the Angels which say “Do not be afraid for a child, a Savior has been born for us, who is Christ and Lord.” (Lk 2:10)

On behalf of Frs. Saul, Jerome, McCabe, Msgr. Bennett, Srs. Mary, Cathy, Karen, Joan and the entire staff of St. Ignatius Loyola, I wish you and your loved ones a most blessed Christmas and a peaceful New Year. May the light of Christ illumine in your hearts forever. Oh, and lest I forget, please wish everyone you see a “Merry Christmas!”

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families.
St. Ignatius, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

December 16, 2012

Third Sunday of Advent
Zeph 3,14-18;Phil 4:4-7; Lk 3:10-18

During this Third Sunday of Advent, we light the third or rose candle. This candle is rose colored because we are at a time to rejoice. We call this Gaudete (Rejoice) Sunday. The prophet Zephaniah reminds us that we who are repentant and faithful to our God, will experience the joy of God’s coming to us.

Last week we were introduced to John the Baptist. This week, John tells us what we have to make right in our lives in order to have a straight pathway to God.

During this Advent, I have been reading reflections by Fr. Robert Barron. In his meditation this week, he writes that one of the problems in blocking Israel’s pathway to God was false worship of different gods. This is taking what is less than God and making it into one’s ultimate concern. One becomes conformed to what they value most.

The crowds have gone from Jerusalem to find John. They have a sense that something is wrong with their lives. The nation has fallen again into false worship that it lost its soul over when it was exiled into Babylon. They have come to be cleansed and start anew. That is the reason for his ceremonial washing, his baptism.

When they ask him “what should we do?” he tells them to do works of mercy and justice. If you give up your false idols of life, and worship the true God, who is righteousness and justice, then your life will conform to His.  Your lives will be filled with righteousness and justice.

The question this Advent is, how are we doing in regard to justice? How do we stand in regard to the poor and the disenfranchised?  One way of testing to see if we are living a life of justice, is to measure our lives according to the Corporal Works of Mercy:

To feed the hungry;
To give drink to the thirsty;
To clothe the naked;
To visit the sick;
To visit the imprisoned
(could be someone in jail or
Sheltering the Homeless;
To bury the dead.

This could be best gift a person can ever receive.  Perhaps instead of stressing out over what retail gift to buy our loved ones, we can make a donation to a charity on their behalf.

Following the Corporal Works of Mercy helps us to share in God’s divine nature and possess eternal life, which we call sanctifying grace.

Another way to be faithful to John’s message is by participating in the sacrament of reconciliation. On Monday, December 17th we are offering penance service beginning at 7:30pm. What better way to prepare our hearts as a home for Jesus. Please join us, especially if you have not taken advantage of the sacrament for a while. We are also offering confession throughout the week. Check the bulletin for details.

What’s Happening Around Our Facilities

Decorating for Christmas is happening little by little. The lights around our trees reflect that as our days grow dimmer, the light of Christ grows stronger. As we decorate, try to keep the spirit of Advent until December 24th. This season flies by too quickly.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. 
St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

December 9, 2012

2nd Sunday of Advent
Baruch 5:1-9; Phl 1:4-6, 8-11; Lk 3:1-6

The Gospels for this 2nd Sunday of Advent and next Sunday focus on what some would call a “funny looking” character, according to our times, John the Baptist.

While today’s Gospel does not describe John the Baptist, Matthew tells us that John wore camel’s hair, a leather belt around his waist, and his diet was wild locusts and honey( Mt.3:4). It probably tastes like chicken.

John is certainly not the person you would invite to liven up a party. However, to seek the right path to God, John certainly has the expertise. He tells it like it is in life. There is no guile with John.

To describe John the Baptist in our times, is like a parent who corrects us when we did something wrong; a concerned friend who calls us to task when we may have said the wrong thing or been drinking too much; a teacher does tells the truth and his/her own bias opinions. John the Baptist is the last of the prophets, God’s mouthpiece, who speaks about our faithfulness or lackthere- of, and reminds us to place God first in our lives.

This Sunday, John tells us to “straighten our paths, lower our mountains and fill in the valleys for the coming of the Lord Jesus” (Lk 3:1-7). Luke writes that John speaks at the time of Roman and Jewish leaders in power, telling us how important John is even though he is a common man. He is a herald, an announcer, of the Lord.

To lower the mountains and fill in the valleys of our lives, we need to reflect on what pathways of life we have chosen. Are they leading us to or from God? We also need to identify those mountains and valleys such as pride, jealousy, selfishness, addiction, violence, fraud and lust. This leads to sin. One way to lower the mountains and fill in the valleys, is by looking at what we watch on television. Many of today’s television shows are a virtual wasteland of sex, sexual innuendos, violence, cursing, and bullying. Is this what we want for our children and ourselves?

A few weeks ago, we were all asked to submit names on a special card of people we know who have not been to Mass for a while. I now invite you to invite them to St. Ignatius Loyola. You may invite them to a Sunday or weekday Mass, or to some of the events we have here for Advent. On Friday, December 14th at 7:30pm, invite young people to our annual Christmas caroling starting in the new school cafeteria.

On Saturday, December 15th following the 5pm Mass, we are having a tree lighting with hot chocolate and cookies. What a great time to invite your family or friends to the 5pm Mass and enjoy the lighting of the tree.

You may also invite those for whom you pray, to the annual “Lessons & Carols at 3:30pm on Sunday Dec. 16th in the Church. This will only last for 1 hour. It is not a Mass, but a service with scripture readings from the Bible, prayers and music.  These are ways we can help people feel more at home here at St. Ignatius Loyola.

We recently learned that Fr. Joseph McCabe will be leaving us on Jan 6, 2013 for a new assignment.  Fr. McCabe is a Maryknoll missionary priest who has preached the Gospel to many nations around the world from Tanzania, to Russia and to Italy. We were lucky to have him for about 3 years here in little ol’ Hicksville. While here, Fr. McCabe has been the Diocesan Director of the Pontifical Missionary Societies (formerly called the Propagation of the Faith) and the Diocesan Mission Office for the Diocese of Rockville Centre.

Along with my brother priests, I am grateful for his service here at St. Ignatius Loyola. He has certainly gone above and beyond his call of duty as a priest in residence. Fr. McCabe has journeyed with us in our tears at funerals, wedded us at the altar, visited us when we were sick and he helped fill in the gaps at the rectory when we did not notice. I want to personally thank Fr. McCabe for helping and encouraging me in my first year as pastor. It is a blessing to have a guide when you embark onto new territory. May God bless you Fr. Joe in your new ministry as a student, again! Remember, you always have a home here at St. Ignatius Loyola, even if there is no heat in your room.

Please join us in celebrating Fr. McCabe’s Priesthood here at St. Ignatius Loyola at the 5pm mass on Sunday December 29th, followed by a reception in Msgr. Tarrant Hall.

May God bless you and Mary keep you always.
St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

December 2, 2012

1st Sunday of Advent
Cycle C-Readings
Jer.33:14-16, 1Thes 3:12-4:2, Lk. 21:25-28,34-36

Happy New Year, everybody! You might be thinking, “we just finished Thanksgiving and Fr. Jim is wishing us a Happy New Year? Only a pastor for a year and already he’s lost it?” Don’t worry, I am not out of my mind, at least not yet. However, we are entering into a new year, not our secular calendar year, but the Church liturgical calendar year. When Church begins the First Sunday of Advent, she proclaims it a new liturgical year. Since the Second Vatican Council, the Church year is divided into 3 cycles or years, A,B and C. Each cycle focuses on a particular Gospel passage. During Cycle A, we focus on the Gospel of Matthew. During Cycle B, we focus on the Gospel of Mark. During Cycle C, we will focus on the Gospel of Luke. The first reading from the weekday mass readings is divided into Cycle 1 or 2. During Cycle C, we will hear the readings from Cycle 1. Then we alternate to Cycle 2, the next liturgical year. By the time we finish Year C, we will have heard much of the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke with John interspersed in-between along with the readings from the Old and New Testament, giving us a fuller sense of God’s acts in salvation history as found in the Bible. This neutralizes the argument that the Catholic Church is not scriptural enough. The Gospel of Luke tells us this week, nothing here on earth lasts forever; whether it is in nature, the cosmos, politics, our purchases from the store or online and even our own bodies. Fr. Robert Barron writes, “don’t’ expect to find your ultimate fulfillment in any of it”. I pray that as we begin the new Church Year with Advent, we will fix our eyes on Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, who belongs to all times and all ages. Amen!


After some consultation and careful consideration, the scheduled evening Masses on Sundays will have new times. Effective on Sunday January 6, 2013, the new time for the Masses will be at 5:15 P.M. (English) and 7:00 P.M. (Spanish).  The reason why I, in consultation with the other priests, have decided to change the Mass times is two-fold:
1)It has become obvious that we need some time and space between the former 6 PM and 7:15PM Masses on Sunday. I have witnessed increasing congestion outside and inside the Church. In our parking lots, people are trying to leave while others are trying to enter. Due to this congestion, the safety of our people has become compromised and there is the danger of some becoming injured.
2) The faithful, coming to both of these Masses, have a right to finish their worship without feeling rushed to leave the church, while also having sufficient time to prepare for the liturgy in a quiet and calm manner before each Mass. By changing the times in the way outlined above, we now have sufficient time for each group to come, pray, worship and leave (as we have with our regularly scheduled morning Masses) without feeling congested or rushed in the parking lot or in the sacristy area.
These changes are made to more effectively serve those who attend Mass on Sunday evenings, and I ask your support and cooperation in this decision to create a more comfortable and inviting worship experience for all. Please note the change, plan accordingly, and tell all your friends and neighbors of this new schedule.


Beginning this weekend, the change in the flow of the assembly receiving Holy Communion goes into effect. This affects anyone sitting in the main body of the Church. During Holy Communion, you are asked to come up the center aisle, make a slight bow before the host, say Amen after you hear the words “The Body of Christ” and then return by way of the side aisle.  This pattern allows us to approach the table of the Lord and not have our backs to the Lord on our return.


The Church will soon celebrate the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary on December 8, 2012. This is the Patronal Feast Day of our nation as the United States of America. Please remember that this is a Holy Day of Obligation for all Catholics. Consult the bulletin for Mass times. With that in mind, I share with you this Ancient Prayer of the Virgin. I invite you to pray it during this season of Advent.

 We turn to you for protection, Holy Mother of God.
Listen to our prayers and help us in our needs.
Save us from every danger, glorious and blessed virgin. Amen.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

November 25, 2012

Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe
(34th Sunday in Ordinary Time-Last Sunday of the Liturgical Year)
Dn 7:3-14, Rv 1:5-8, 18:33-37

Reflection Question: How does the Kingdom of God differ from earthly
kingdoms? How do you help it spread?


The greatest act we can do as Catholics is to participate in the Eucharist  (the Mass).  In the Eucharist, one of the most important actions is the privilege of receiving Holy Communion. According to the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM), the reception of Holy Communion is the “consummation of the Mass where the people purchased for the Father by his Beloved Son eat and drink the Body and Blood of Christ” ( p. 131 #5). In Holy Communion, Christ is truly, really and substantially contained” body blood soul and divinity( GIRM p. 133 # 8). When we receive Holy Communion at the Eucharist, we are joined together as members of Christ’s mystical Body, sharing in the one life of the Spirit (GIRM p. 131 #5).

When I arrived last June of 2011, one of the first things that I noticed was the pattern of the Holy Communion line at mass in the main body of the church. On Sundays, we have been coming out from the side aisles to receive Holy Communion and then head back through the center aisle. After inquiring about this pattern of the communion line, I could not ascertain the reason why we do what we do - only that this is the way we have always done it.

Why do I want to change our communion line approach? First, all of the Church documents stress our approach to the altar, the table of the Lord to receive his Eucharistic food. We join in procession with the other members of our community to approach the altar to receive Holy Communion. By coming up from the side aisles we are not really in front of the altar. When we return, our backs are to the altar. Second, we need to be in union with one another. When we receive from the center aisle, physically and spiritually we will be in union with our brothers and sister who receive from the trancepts as they face the altar and our Hispanic brothers and sisters in Christ who have been receiving this way all along. In addition, we will be in unity with most of our parishes in the Diocese and across the world. In this great Sacrament of the Altar, we are united with the Lord and one another. Our approach from the center makes this more imminent. As a reminder, we show our respect and love for the Eucharist by bowing slightly before we receive Communion and answering “Amen” to “The Body of Christ.” Since this is the last Sunday of this season and of the liturgical year, the pattern change will happen next Sunday December 1 and 2, 2012 which begins the new season of Advent. I ask that all people who sit in the pews in the main body of the Church come up for Holy Communion by way of the center aisle and go back by way of the side aisle. Any person sitting in the disabled section, who cannot come toward the altar, will have communion brought to them. Thank you for your cooperation on this very important manner.

I would like to mention how happy and proud we are of our young people who received Confirmation. We pray that the Lord may bless them and that they may continue to be connected to Christ through our church.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

November 18, 2012

33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Dn 12:1-3,Heb 10:11-14,18, Mk 13:24-32

This week, we celebrate the one Holiday that all Americans can take part no matter race, color or creed; Thanksgiving Day. From the events that have occurred around Long Island and the tri-state region from Super Storm Sandy, we can all be grateful to our God for the gift of human life. While grateful, we also pray in union with those o have lost loved ones to the storm.
Thanksgiving should teach us that we are to be thankful every day not just one day a year- most especially to our God. Meister Eckhart, a German Theologian, once said that if we just say “Thank You” to God each day, that is sufficient in itself to be a prayer. On behalf of Fr. Saul, Fr. McCabe, Fr. Jerome, Msgr. Bennett, our Dominican Sisters Mary, Kathy, Karen and Joan, and our entire staff of St. Ignatius Loyola, we thank you all for being faithful parishioners of St. Ignatius Loyola. Thank you to all who have worked so hard in helping to create a home in our Warming Center the past two weeks for those without power. Thank you to all who have donated and will donate to the cause in helping the victims of Super Storm Sandy. May you and your families, relatives and friends have a blessed Thanksgiving. I now share with you a proclamation by President Abraham Lincoln declaring ThanksgivingDay for the United States. As you read it, you will see that his words, though written in the 19th Century, still resonate very much with us today.


November 11, 2012

32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time
1Kngs 17:10-16,Heb9:24-28, Mk 12:38-44


During the last week of October, we all experienced a storm that was stronger than the Hurricane of 1938.  Back then, most of us were not even born or were very young. I hope you were safe during this storm.

Like you, we here at St. Ignatius did not have power for several days. Some people are still without power even I as write this column. We have some damage by our convent from fallen trees and a broken sidewalk. We join our prayers together for all those people whose lives were devastated by Superstorm Sandy, most especially those on the south and north shores of Long Island. May the Lord comfort them and bring them hope through the hands of others.

Events like this certainly remind us that no matter how much we human beings achieve in terms of technology or other forms of human accomplishment, we are still nonetheless subject to forces beyond our control. We are limited, we are dependent, and we are not divine. It’s good for us to dwell on that from time to time and how much we need God in our lives.

These events also bring out the best in people despite the tragedy around us. I have seen great generosity.   Thanks to Joe Samodulski and our Human Services Ministry team we have opened up a Warming
Center in the “new school” cafeteria during the weekday evenings from 6pm to 9pm for all those without power. We are now looking for donations to help the victims of Superstorm Sandy. These will be sent to the distribution centers of the hardest hit areas.


The following items are to be Travel Size, small, to fit into a zip lock bag with other items.
Body soap/wash
Shaving Cream
Deodorant (Men’s & Women’s)
1 Gallon-Size Lock Bags
Travel-Size Tissues
Feminine Hygiene Products

Human Services located in the back of the
Convent Building:
M,T,Th 9:30am to 3:00pm
Wednesdays 6pm to 8:30pm
Saturdays-After the 9am
& 5PM Masses
Sundays-After all the Masses

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

August 12, 2012

19th Sunday in Ordinary Time
1Kngs 19:4-8, Eph.4:30-5:2, Jn. 6:41-51

Reflection Question: How does Jesus sustain your life today?

Recently, I read a disturbing survey by Georgetown University’s Berkley Center concerning young people and their faith. It found that many young people are drifting away from the religion in which they were raised. The study found that Catholics and mainline Protestants were most likely to change their religious affiliations. The study of Americans aged 18 to 24—identified in the survey as “Millenials”—found most young adults who left one religious group did not join another. Among the Millenials, 25% reported no religious affiliation, while only 11% said that they were raised without a religious affiliation. Though it did not say why, I am sure with all of the competing secular forces, we know the answers.

This reminds me of the people whom we find in today’s Gospel Jn 6:41-51 who limit and question Jesus. They do not want to believe that Jesus is the “bread of life” that gives us eternal life. It is our task as Church to help all people, especially young men and women, see the Church as the primary means through which Jesus continues to save the world. The Church shows this through the Word and Sacraments. May we pray and work for an increase of faith in our community for our young people.

What’s Happening Around Our Facilities?

We all know that St. Ignatius has been struggling financially with our 2.8 million dollar debt. Little by little we are trying the best we can to reduce such a large burden. I want to thank all those who have and are giving continuously to pay that debt down. However, there are other things that need to be done in the immediate future.

Since the school has closed, I have decided, in consultation with my business manager, to discontinue our contract with the Executive Cleaners Cleaning Service. Executive Cleaners has been taking care of our buildings for a few years. Since the school will not be used as much in the near future, I thought it best to close our contract with Executive Cleaners to help us save money. One of the items that surprised me as pastor was the expense we incurred in hiring this company. We have been paying approximately $8,000 per month. Like many organizations and municipalities, it is time to cut where we must. We will look for someone part time to help maintain our cleanliness at a much lower cost.

As a result of discontinuing our contract with Executive Cleaners, Jorge Flores, the man who cleans our Church and Rectory, will also be leaving us because he actually works for them. Executive Cleaners will reassign him to another place. I want to thank Jorge for all his hard word. I am sure we will still see Jorge around, as he is an active parishioner here at St. Ignatius. ˇ Vaya con Dios Jorge!

A GREAT BIG THANK YOU to all the men who helped in painting the lines around our parking lot: Tony Condron, Pat McHugh, Jim Friel, Tom Kenny, Jimmy Keough and Martin Conway. The parking lot looks like new. Progress!

Holy Day of Obligation Reminder:
Please remember to come to Mass either on August 14th in the evening or on August 15th for the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is a Holy Day of Obligation for all Catholics. This day celebrates when Mary was taken up into heaven body and soul where she is now and we one day hope to be.

Spiritual Adoption Program:
Please take a pledge card this weekend found in your seat to pray for an unborn child. You can name the child and then return the pledge card next weekend. We will have bulletin inserts on this program each month. Join us to pray for life!

Welcome to Fr. Carmody:
We want to give a great St. Ignatius welcome to Fr. Jim Carmody who is helping us for the summer while I am away. Fr. Carmody is here until Friday August 17, 2012. I will be away until August 24th. I pray the rest of your summer is holy, healthy, relaxing and safe.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

August 5, 2012

18th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Ex 16:2-4,12-15;Eph 4:17,20-24; Jn 6:24-35

Reflection Question: How does the Bread of Life, Jesus help you to satisfy your hungers?

We continue our reflection on John chapter 6. . Last week Jesus fed the crowd in a physical way through the multiplication of the loaves and fishes. This week Jesus takes the crowd and us on a deeper level of understanding with His teachings. The people are looking for Him to be a simple miracle worker and they are questioning His authority.
Jesus, as God, is a whole lot more than a miracle worker. He not only fills people physically, but spiritually.

All who take heed of Jesus’ Word and make Him the center of their lives, are nourished for a life of eternity. Jesus, Himself, is the Bread of Life that we all need in order to “do the works of God.” Take time to listen to the Word at Mass in the Scriptures this week.

Please join us, as it is our obligation, to participate in the Mass for the Assumption on August 14th(Vigil) or on the Holy Day of August 15th. The masses at St. Ignatius are as follows: Tuesday, August 14th-7:30pm; Wednesday August 15th 7, 9, 12 and 7:30PM. When we come to this Mass, we are commemorating the event of Mary being assumed(going) up to Heaven body and soul. We are saying to ourselves and the world that what the Blessed Mothers is now, we shall one day be; sons and daughters of eternal life!

SPIRTUAL ADOPTION PROGRAM—Dear friends in Christ, Two weeks ago the nation was stunned by the violence that occurred at a movie theater in Auroa, Colorado where at least 12 people were killed senselessly and at least 50 others were injured. Since then, the nation has cried out against this violence. As I contemplated this horrific event, I could not help but think of another horrific event that takes place right under our noses, even as I am writing to you right now.  This is the violence of taking an unborn human life by the act of abortion.

Since the Roe V. Wade decision in 1973, the number of abortions in the US has increased to 1.2 million annually.  Abortion is a violence that strikes directly at the beginning of human life. Why should we be surprised when violence hits us at other times when we allow it at life’s inception? With all this said, we can make a difference to
“stop the violence.”

I am asking you today to make a personal commitment to pray daily for one unborn child who is in danger of being aborted. I am also asking you to “spiritually adopt” one unknown baby for the next nine months. We will pray for this child that he or she will be carried to term and experience the fullness of life, as God intended. 

Picture for just a moment a young woman who discovered she is 7 weeks pregnant. She’s surprised and is contemplating an abortion. She does not realize that the baby needs to be totally dependent on her to live. She is pressured by others telling her there are no other options.

However, we can show her in a spiritual way there are options. All our prayers can make a difference whether or not this baby will be born. Please read the articles about the Spiritual Adoption program in our bulletin and seriously consider signing up to pray for a baby, yet to be born. On Aug 11th/ 12th, you will find spiritual adoption cards to think over. August 18th/19th is the official sign-up weekend where you can drop your card in a basket. Please consider this program as we try to reverse violence and never underestimate the power of prayer!

THE DEATH OF MSGR. FRANK MIDURA (What’s Happening Around our Facilities)
In working on my Pastor’s Corner, I have often looked at other parish bulletins for assistance and ideas. Every week one of our cooks, Mickey Margas, brings the bulletin from St. Thomas More, in Hauppauge where her brother Msgr. Frank Midura was the pastor. One thing that struck me about Msgr. Frank’s bulletin was his report about the facilities of the parish. Once he completed a project, he often wrote “progress”. I thought great idea! I’ll do that here too to keep people aware of what’s happening with the buildings of the parish.

This past week we received sad word that Msgr. Midura died suddenly. The Church has lost a great man. Our prayers go out to Mickey and her entire family. May Msgr. Frank Midura now rest in the peace of Christ in Heaven. There he can certainly say without a doubt “PROGRESS.” We hope that one day we can say that too.

Thank you to all who helped and came to our Mass and social in celebrating the Feast of St. Ignatius! We had at least 75 people.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

July 29, 2012

17th Sunday in Ordinary Time
2Kings4:42-44, Eph.4:1-6, Jn.6:15

Reflection Question: What are some of the ways God feeds you in this life?

As we proceed through the Scriptures this Sunday, you may notice that the Gospel has changed. Usually during Ordinary Time, the Church stays with the Gospel of the present cycle of readings; Cycle A, B, or C. This year we are in Cycle B, the Gospel of Mark. However, since Mark is the shortest of the Gospels, the Church in her wisdom decided to also include a part of the Gospel of John. So, every three years we get an opportunity to focus on John’s chapter six. This particular chapter is very important to us because it helps us focus on the importance of the
Eucharist in our lives. John’s Gospel does not have a Last Supper scene like the other three. However, we find in chapter six a foreshadowing of the Eucharistic banquet to come. For the next five Sundays, we will have an opportunity to focus on how our God takes care of us and feeds us through His Son Jesus - first through physical food such as bread, then through His teachings and the Word, and most importantly, through His very Self in His own Body and Blood. I invite each of us to take time to read chapter six because it will help us to have a deeper understanding of the Eucharist (the Mass) which is the “source and summit of our lives.”

This Sunday in 2 Kings and John 6:1-15 we recognize that God does care for us and that God always provides for us no matter the events we face in life. Elisha is at a place of worship, a shrine, named Gilgal. There are other men with him who want to learn because they are aspiring to be prophets. While there, someone shows up with twenty barley loaves, a gift for the prophet and his disciples. Usually this gift is offered up to God as a sacrifice.  However, Elisha, recognizing the hunger of the people, commands that the loaves be given to them to eat immediately. Though at first it looks like there is not enough, we see that there is just enough for all. This story tells us that God knows our needs. He works with what is available to provide abundantly for all our needs.

Today’s Gospel continues the theme of God providing. Where Mark left off last Sunday, John continues with the miraculous scene of the feeding of the multitude. Here we find that there are leftovers. This tells us that God continues to provide and care for us through the Church, the Word, and the Sacraments, most especially the Eucharist.
We are then transformed by God’s provisions to make Jesus’ mission our own by loving as He loved us and giving of ourselves so that others may be fed and will not go hungry.

Feast of St. Ignatius
An example of the Lord providing for the Church and the world is found in the life of the patron of our parish, St. Ignatius Loyola, whose feast day we celebrate this Tuesday July 31st. St. Ignatius went through a time of conversion that transformed him from a rich military man to a person who gave the rest of his life to God and founded the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) that have helped educate millions of Catholics in the faith at colleges and universities around the world.

St. Ignatius is the author of what is known as the “Spiritual Exercises” that helps make the Scriptures more real in our daily lives. St Ignatius’ motto is “For the greater glory of God.”

I have a special love for St. Ignatius because I had the opportunity to experience his Spiritual Exercises on a thirty day retreat during my last year in the seminary. To this very day, I credit these prayerful exercises for reaffirming my vocation to the ordained priesthood. I also believe that it is of no coincidence that I, along with my brother priests, have the opportunity to be here to serve all of you at St. Ignatius Loyola parish. Please join us for a special Mass on July 31st at 9am followed by a social outdoors. The rectory office will be closed till at least 10am Tuesday, July 31, 2012.

What’s Happening Around Our Facilities?

The parking lots are being painted, the spot for those with disabilities was moved one lot over and one parking space is no longer accessible so that the priests can move out more freely from the garage. We do not need accidents.  Progress!

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim

July 22, 2012

16th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Mark 6:30-34

Reflection Question: When do you carve out time to rest with Jesus in prayer? Where do you pray best?

“Come away and rest awhile”(Mk 6:31) - There are many instances where this Gospel passage fits well with the season or the events happening in our lives. What a better time to hear Jesus’ words “come away and rest”, then during the summer when things should slow down, when we are given the opportunity to take time out of our busy schedules and “smell the roses” or to pay more attention to God in our lives. Even Jesus and the disciples needed to “get away” from the daily tasks of ordinary life.

Many times life goes by so quickly that we miss out on those occasions, where God wants us to be more present to Him. Perhaps as we go away or plan a stay-cation at home, may we take the time with our families and friends to notice God a little bit more so that we can be more open to His revelation. We can notice God in Church, in a park, on the beach, hiking, walking, bicycling, and even at home.

During this time of year, I take some time to pray in the mountains by a stream or by the ocean - quiet and alone. Each place has brought me a peace that no other can give. May we take the time so that we do not miss out on the good that is before us.

In regards to vacations, you may have read an article in Newsday, 7/7/12, about going to Mass while on vacation.  There is an excellent reply by Fr. Marty Klein, a retired priest at Our Lady of Mercy and our former business manager. Fr. Marty said that “Taking a break from faith is never an option. Faith is a part of your life”. The only time we would be excused from Mass while on vacation is if we are in transit, on a cruise or in an area where we just cannot find a Church. Besides, when we go to another parish, we get the sense of what the word Catholic really means, universal. As I mentioned last week, please bring a bulletin from whatever parish you visit.

Novena to St Ann - After the 7AM, before the 9AM weekday Mass, before all the Sat/Sun Masses, join us for a novena prayer to St. Ann, the mother of Mary and Grandmother of the Blessed Sacrament, Christ Jesus. You will find a prayer card in your row.

The Feast of St. Ignatius Loyola, Tuesday July 31st Come and join us for Mass at 9AM on Tuesday July 31st to celebrate our parish patron, St. Ignatius Loyola. What a great blessing that this saint, who taught us to do all things for the greater glory of God, is our patron. Please bring your families and your friends.!

What’s Happening Around our Facilities?

Thanks to our boy scouts for 1)varnishing and painting our outdoor benches and kneelers. They needed a lot of work, 2) the gardening, watering and weeding in our parish gardens. 3)cleaning up the school from unnecessary items. You have helped to beautify our parish grounds. Now the job for us all is to maintain its beauty.

In regards to the school, you may have noticed that there are a few filled dumpsters on the side of the school. This is to help us clean out the school of any unnecessary materials. There are quite a few items that will stay such as desks, computers, statues, the indoor playground and other items that are essential for our parish programs. We are currently looking into several possibilities for use of the school by other organizations. Once this has been finalized, you will be the first to know.

Congratulations to our New Altar Servers - We are installing the following new altar servers Sunday at the 9:30am Mass: Sean Dalton, Daragh Foley, Eoin Foley, Stephen Gonzalez, Luke Lavan, Erin McCartney, Mark Sullivan. Please join me in praying for them and congratulating them and their parents for this ministry of service.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

July 15, 2012

15th Sunday of Ordinary Time
Mk 6:7-13

Reflection Question: How do your possessions help your discipleship in following Jesus?

Welcome Fr. Saúlo (Saul) Londońo & Fr. Jerome Ackah

Since Frs. Saul & Jerome just arrived about two weeks ago, I thought it would be helpful for all of us to get to know a little bit more about our new clergy. Here is their biography based on their own words. As you read about them, it sounds pretty much like what we hear in this Sunday’s Gospel. “Go and preach to all carrying nothing but a walking stick.” These two men have certainly heard that call from different lands.

Fr. Saúl Londońo - Father Saúl Londońo is a Colombian priest, belonging to a Society founded in his own country, called the Xaverian Missionaries, or “Misioneros javerianos de Yarumal”.  After spending more than 20 years in Africa, as a missionary priest, Father Saúl came
back to New York for eye treatment; he lost his vision in his right eye. In Africa, he was serving missions with very poor people in Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Angola. Starvation and death from all kinds of illnesses was the everydays scene. When he arrived in New York, Bishop Murphy of Rockville Centre assigned him as Chaplain at North Shore Plainview Hospital for one year. It was a new and great experience for him to be able to assist those suffering in so many ways. At the hospital, Fr. Saul was able to put into practice the languages he learned in the missions: French, Portuguese, Italian, Spanish and English.  Since the transfer of Fr.José was imminent, Fr. Saúl was assigned to our parish, St. Ignatius, as an Associate Pastor, while he continues with his eye treatment. Fr. Saúl has been a priest for 24 years and says “I feel very happy to be able to serve in the parish of St. Ignatius”. Father likes to be called “Fr. Saul”. Fr. Saul is away at the present time.  He will be joining us in late July.

Fr. Jerome Francis Whajah Ackah - Father Jerome came from Ghana in West Africa. He did his elementary, college, and seminary education in Ghana. He is the second son among 11 children. He entered the minor seminary in 1979 and completed in 1986. That same year, he entered the major seminary and after philosophy and theological studies and training for six years, he was ordained for the Diocese of Sekondi-Takoradi in 1992. After serving the Diocese in Ghana for 4 years, he was sent to South Africa for a missionary program for seven years in the Diocese of Witbank in Mpumalanga province. Later in 2001, he came back home to serve his mother diocese for five years before he applied for a sabbatical leave in 2008 in the USA. Before this time, Fr. Jerome had been coming for the summer months as a replacement from 2002-2007. He has been a Chaplain in the hospitals of South Nassau University Community Hospital, North Shore LIJ, Glen Cove, Huntington, Patchoque, Long Beach Hospital, Peconic Hospital, Riverhead, Mercy Medical Centre, Rockville Centre, St. Francis Heart Hospital, South Nassau Community Hospital and now LIJ Plainview Hospital. Fr. Jerome completed 4 units of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) with the help of the Diocese of Rockville Centre. He says “When some ask do you like it here?” My answer always has been that I love America very much and all the good people. I am already liking it here at St. Ignatius Loyola, thanks be to God.”
PS. You can call him “Fr. Jerome”.

What’s Happening Around our Facilities

Check out the new kneelers in our Blessed Sacrament Chapel. Thanks to Robert Renner, one of our ushers who is also a talented carpenter. May God bless you Robert as you have helped us to kneel a little bit easier before our Jesus in the Eucharist.

Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! A great thank you to all who have given so much of their time and talent in preparation for the “Fortnight for Freedom”. It is through your efforts and creativity that all of our events were well attended and filled with a Spirit of prayer, freedom and justice. Most especially I want to thank Noreen Crayne for
assisting me in the planning of all these events. She was a great help to me.

Family Movie Night -Check out the flyer in the bulletin. On Thursday, July 26th our new Family Life ministry is offering an outdoor movie for everybody.  Please be safe during these summer months. There have been too many tragedies as of late. If you are traveling, bring back a bulletin from another parish. I always like to see what the other (guy) is doing.  Please remember in your prayers Sr. Jackie Walsh a sister of Mercy, her family and St. Edward the Confessor parish in Syosset. I knew Sr. Jackie since my days at St. Brigid in Westbury (’98-’03). Sr. Jackie was a sister of spirit, life and love. She will be sorely missed. May she rest in the peace of God.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

July 1, 2012

June 30-July 1, 2012
13th Sunday of Ordinary Time
Mk 5:21-43

Reflection Question: When have you experienced the healing presence of Jesus? How did this happen?

One of my favorite places to travel on a pilgrimage is Lourdes, France. This is the site where the Church has officially taught that the Blessed Mother appeared to St. Bernadette Soubirous for a period of 18 apparitions. During this time, the Blessed Mother asked Bernadette to dig to find fresh springs of water that would flow from underneath. Bernadette, with a strong faith, kept digging and digging even though the towns people, whose faith was weak, were laughing at her. Sure enough, water came forth from a spring. From that day forward to today, the healing waters keep coming. . People from all over the world come to Lourdes just to bathe in these waters. Some are even miraculously healed of their physical disabilities.

During my first visit, I will never forget what our tour guide said as she explained the power behind the waters of the springs. She said that when you bathe in these waters, you may experience a real physical miracle. However, most of the time, you will not have such an experience. Even if you do not have this physical healing, you will most definitely experience a spiritual healing. It is what happens inside that matters. What is the most important is healing a person’s faith.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus shows us that He is the author of healing. However, the healing that comes to the woman with the hemorrhages and the raising of Jairus’ daughter, is not from Jesus’ act alone but also from their faith. Usually, when someone has been healed in the Gospels, Jesus would touch the person. Here in Mark, however, the woman is so bold with faith that she comes and touches Jesus. She recognizes that there is something special about Him and no one or thing will prevent her from reaching out to Jesus. The same can be said of Jairus whose daughter was near death. Both figures do not lose hope.

These two stories show us what faith can do even in the midst of hopeless situations. Jesus, as the Son of God, is more than just a miracle worker. When we ask Jesus for healing, be open not only to what Jesus can do on the outside but what He can do within. When Jesus heals a person physically, His action points to something greater than what has occurred. It points to a resurrection life and the life of salvation to all those who believe in Him. He always walks with us and leads us to a health that can be permanent and eternal away from sin and death. What we need is faith. As Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life, those who believe in Me, even though they die shall live forever” (Jn 11:25). This week may we pray for FAITH. Even a little bit opens us to spiritual health and salvation.

Congratulations to Fr. Joseph McCabe

In being the head of the Diocesan Propagation of the Faith, one of Fr. McCabe’s duties is to write a column for the Long Island Catholic. Recently, Fr. McCabe received the Archbishop O’Mera Award under the category of “A Single Article by a Diocesan Director” for his work entitled the “Treasure Box”. It is soon to be published in Collected Works by the Christophers. Congratulations Fr. McCabe for your outstanding work and your ministry.

What’s Happening Around Our Facilities

On Thursday June 21, 2012, the school system known as St. Ignatius
Loyola closed. This has brought a certain sense of sadness to our parish. However, like the woman with the hemorrhage and Jairus’ daughter, we are still to be a people of HOPE. Even though the school system has shut down, the doors shall remain open. My hope is to call our buildings St. Ignatius Loyola Center for Faith Formation. This would include faith for all stages of life from Children to Adult. There are also other possibilities to allow other venues to make good use of our space too. I cannot do that alone. So I am looking for approximately 4 people who can offer their advice on the use of space.
Those people would need to fit one of four categories: Architect, Lawyer, Financial Planner, Interior Design and Space. If you are interested, please contact me here at the rectory. In the meantime, I ask all of us to pray so that our buildings shall be put to good use for the parish.
May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!
Fr. Jim

June 24, 2012

Solemnity of The Nativity of John the Baptist
Farewell and Thank You
Fr. Jose Quilcate

This past Monday, we received word that Fr. José will be moving from St. Ignatius Loyola to serve at Our Holy Redeemer parish in Freeport at the end of this month.  Fr. Jose’s new pastor is a familiar friend of St. Ignatius, Fr. Arcoleo. We are happy that Fr. José will certainly not be among strangers in his new home. Because Fr. Jose’s departure has
come rather quickly, we will sponsor a celebration for him sometime in the future based on his schedule. On behalf of the priests, sisters and staff of the parish, I want to personally thank Fr. José for his 10 years of service to St. Ignatius, most especially for his work with our Hispanic Community. One of Fr. José’s achievements was implementing the current weekly Sunday Spanish Mass. He has also worked faithfully with our Spanish Community in Religious Formation, Education and Community in helping Hispanics belong more deeply to our parish. We thank him for bringing us his joy at our English Masses too. May God bless you Fr. José. Remember that you always have a home here at St. Ignatius Loyola. Dios te bendiga! (God bless you!) In the meantime, the Bishop has assigned us two new priests, Fr. Saul (Saulo) Londono and Fr. Jerome Ackah. Fr. Saul is currently the Chaplain at North Shore Plainview Hospital. He will be our full time Associ ate Pastor. Fr. Ackah is now the Chaplain at South Nassau Hospital. He will be in residence and serving as Chaplain of North Shore Plainview. Fr. Saul will arrive on June 30th and Fr. Jerome will arrive sometime after June 27th. More on our
new priests in next week’s bulletin. Stay tuned!

The Closing of our Parish School

For 105 years, St. Ignatius parish and St. Ignatius School have worked well together in being a beacon of light and hope here in the Hicksville community. Recently, in his closing remarks our Pastor Emeritus Msgr. Bennett said that it is like a body with arms and legs that it needs to help it move and function with greatness. When the body loses an essential part, however, it feels that something is not quite right.

We as a parish are feeling the loss now as we have come to the time where our school officially closes. It is important to grieve and to recall the memories that will always be etched in our hearts. When someone has lost an important part of the body, they go through extensive physical and emotional therapy to adapt to their new environment. Like a person missing an essential body part, our new calling is to embrace our loss and adapt to our new environment in order to keep our parish alive. We do have our challenges, such as our deepening financial situation and we will now have this loss of our school.

However, we can adapt. Our therapy is our faith in Jesus Christ and His Spirit. It is also us as a community who are willing to share our time and our talents to help our ministries here continue to grow for our youth, families, adults and Seniors. The priests and I cannot do it alone. We need your help. My hope is that the families who have decided to go to the other Catholic Schools will choose to stay here, especially with our sacramental programs. If we continue to pray, share ideas, work together and be welcoming to others, then St. Ignatius Loyola parish will grow and we will easily fill in that missing space. We will never be the same after this last school year. However, something new and great can come about that can make us better than we are today.

I want to take this time on behalf of our parish to thank all of those principals, teachers, students and parents past and present who have given their all for St. Ignatius Parish School, especially the following who are our present School Employees: PRINCIPALS: Sr. Mary Ann Noonan RSM and Sr. Mary O’Donnell OP SCHOOL SECRETARY: Anne Gregg TEACHERS: Jennifer Andrews, Owen Cody, Janelle Forster, Mary Giglioli, Kevin Hansen, Ilyssa Knoblach, Heiddy Lackner, Kathleen Lawniczak, Amy McGrath, Frances McGovern, Alison Mertz, Ann Messmer, Allison Nurick, Alicia Reilly, Megan Rowland, Nicole Sanfilippo, Michael Sessa AIDES:Jaclyn Dinielli, Krista Knausman, Meagan Marglin, Stephanie Sottile NURSE: Joan Welsh May God continue to bless and guide them all the days of their lives!

Fr. Jim,

June 17, 2012

11th Sunday of Ordinary Time
Ez17:22-24, 2Cor 5:6-10, Mk 4:26-34
Father’s Day

Reflection Question: What is God presently calling to grow to fullness in your own life and in the life of our parish community?

Coming from an agrarian society, Jesus often spoke with images of planting and farming in explaining the Kingdom of God. Today’s Gospel is a classic example. The mustard seed is the smallest of seeds for planting. It is 1/20th of an inch in size. Yet, once in the ground, it becomes the largest of plants. In fact, it grows and spreads very quickly as a bush. This image of the growth of the mustard seed describes what happens to the Kingdom of God once it is planted with in us as long as it is in the right place.

The seed of God’s Kingdom has been implanted in each of us from our baptism. All it takes is a little faith on our part and the Kingdom of God blooms within us. It’s not so much of what we do, but what we allow God to work within us. This means cooperating with His grace. To help work with God’s grace, our lives need to be ready, cultivated, fertile and open in listening to God’s Word. The growth of God’s Kingdom takes time, especially more for some than for others. However, if we continue to be faithful, patient and persevere, then the fruits of the Kingdom shall be made known.

Who better to help cultivate and prepare us for God’s grace than our parents, particularly our dads. On this Father’s Day, I want to take this time to thank my dad and all the dads both living and deceased who have given their time, talents, lives and their faith to help us grow into the people our God has called us to be. May God continue to bless all of our living dads and help them to continue to be beacons of hope. May God embrace all the fathers who are deceased and bring them to where one day we shall be; our home in heaven. Happy Father’s Day!

Please Look for All the Events Coming for the Fortnight of Freedom

  • Friday, June 22nd 7:30pm: Movie “A Man for All Seasons” School Gym - Come and watch the life and times of St. Thomas Moore who was martyred for his faith during the reign of King Henry VIII of England.

  • Holy Hour and Adoration on Liberty and Religious Freedom 7:30pm Church
    Tuesday, June 26th Speaker: Fr. Brian Barr, Vocations Director
    Tuesday, July 3rd Speaker: Fr. Lachlan Cameron, Associate Pastor St Rose of Lima

Congratulations to our GRADUATES! Congratulations to all of our graduates from nursery, to pre-k, to kindergarten to the Eighth Grade. May God continue the good work He has begun in you. Thank you to our principals, teachers and parents for all you have done to help cultivate our young People.

What’s Happening Around our Facilities:

The benches around our parish grounds will be varnished thanks to our Boy Scouts and their leaders. Also thanks again to Randy Joseph, on our maintenance staff, and Bruce Wimbiscus for a wonderful job in the back rectory entrance way. The ceiling and the walls were painted and redone in a professional way.

Congratulations and Felicitaciones to Msgr. Robert Brennan, our very own, and Msgr. Nelson J. Perez of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia on being appointed the next Auxiliary Bishops of our Diocese of Rockville Centre!

ROCKVILLE CENTRE, N.Y. – June 8, 2012 –Pope Benedict XVI has appointed two priests, Rev. Msgr. Robert J. Brennan, 50, and Rev. Msgr. Nelson J.Perez, 50, – as auxiliary bishops of the Diocese of Rockville Centre. Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganň, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, made the announcement public earlier today in Washington, D.C. Bishop-elect Brennan is from the Diocese of Rockville Centre and currently serves as Vicar General. Bishop-elect Perez is from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and is the Pastor of Saint Agnes Church, West Chester, Pennsylvania.
The Most Rev. William Murphy, Bishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Rockville Centre will ordain the new Bishops at a Mass of Episcopal Ordination to be celebrated at Saint Agnes Cathedral, Rockville Centre, New York on July 25, 2012, the Feast of Saint James the Apostle.
“I wish to express my fervent thanks to the Holy Father for responding so quickly to my request for two auxiliary bishops to help me pastor the fifth largest diocese in our nation,” said Bishop William Murphy.  “God has blessed this Diocese with good and holy priests and now two new auxiliary bishops, one a native son, the second, a Cuban American who will bring his many gifts and his Latino language, culture and heritage to enrich this wonderful Diocese.”\

On a much lighter note, I cannot thank you enough for the great turnout for our 15th Annual St. Ignatius Loyola Golf Outing - a good time was had by all. Looking forward to next year’s Golf Outing and invite our parishioners to join us in this fun event.
May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families! St Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

June 10, 2012

Solemnity of the Most Holy Body
and Blood of Christ-Corpus Christi
Mk. 14:12-14,22-26

Reflection Question: What can you do to appreciate the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ?

As mentioned previously, our Bishops have written a document entitled Our First, Most Cherished Liberty:  A Statement on Religious Liberty. In this document, they encourage each of us to take a stand in letting the government know that religion is to be practiced freely not only in our Churches, but also in the public realm without any fear of retribution. The Bishops call for each of us to express our solidarity as Americans during the weeks of June 21-July 4th entitled a “Fortnight for Freedom”, which is to be a “great hymn of prayer” for the country. In honoring their request, we here at St. Ignatius are offering three events to help us participate as witnesses of liberty.

  • Friday, June 22nd 7:30PM: Movie “A Man for All Seasons” School Gym
    Come and watch the life and times of St. Thomas Moore who was martyred for his faith during the reign of King Henry VIII of England.

  • Holy Hour and Adoration on Liberty and Religious Freedom: 7:30PM Church

    Tuesday, June 26th Speaker: Fr. Brian Barr, Vocations Director DRVC

    Tuesday July 3rd Speaker: Fr. Lachlan Cameron,
    Associate Pastor St Rose of Lima

I invite all of you to take part in at least one event. Please join us as one family to be the “conscience of the state” so that we can express our beliefs not only as Christians, Jews, Muslims, but as Americans.  This is one way we can live out the Eucharist we will receive on this Solemnity of Corpus Christi!

I urge all our parishioners to see “ For Greater Glory” starring Andy Garcia, Peter O’Toole and Eva Longoria. It is a terrific motion picture about what price you would pay for freedom . It is now playing in theaters and you can check your local listings for locations. “For Greater Glory is a top-flight production whose message of the importance of religious freedom has particular resonance for us today.”  Most Reverend Jose Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles.

Today is the feast of The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ and there will be a procession after the 12:30 Mass today. All are invited to join in this celebration.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families! St Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

June 3, 2012

Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity
Deut.4:32-40, Rom.8:14-17, Mt. 28:16-20

Reflection Question: How can you build community in your family, our parish and community that resembles the relationship of the Holy Trinity; Father, Son and Holy Spirit, One?

Over the past few weeks, we have reflected upon several ways we can belong more deeply to Jesus and to His Church. We looked at ways to take a step in our prayer lives and in our participation and celebration in the life of church.  We acknowledge that we are accountable for all that we have been given. Our journey and self examination is intended to lead us to take action.

Commitment Weekend challenges us to do just that - commit to action. We are individually called by God to participate in the tangible mission of Jesus. We declare in writing our intention to take a step on our faith journey. Now it is your turn to respond to your Baptismal calling in building our Church by volunteering in one of the many ministries St. Ignatius has to offer. Please fill out the card you will find in your row at Mass. Through our commitment and sacrifice, we belong more deeply to Jesus and to His church!

Thank Yous :This past Sunday truly showed us what it means to live as the Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) when we share our time and talents together in honoring our Lord and His Mother, Mary. Though we come from different backgrounds and cultures, we were one in expressing our Faith in our prayer, our ministries and our sacraments.

*A very special thank you to Koreen Cassiero for her hard work in organizing our Ministries Fair last weekend. Though it rained for the first hour, the show still went on in our Gymnasium.

Thank you also to all of our parishioners from our different Ministries and Groups who helped make this a wonderful event for our Parish

*A special thank you also goes out to our St. Ann’s Mother’s Prayer Group who organized the beautiful day in honoring the Blessed Mother with a crown of flowers. Thank you also to our choirs and first holy communicants and the Knights of Columbus for participating in this special day.

*Thank you to Deacon George Mais and his Confirmation team in preparing our new parishioners for the Sacrament of Confirmation.

*Thank you to our Golf Outing Committee for the fantastic job you did in giving us a wonderful day at the Town of Oyster Bay Golf Course. It was a tie between Msgr. Thom Costa and myself in the putting contest. Now I know a little bit of what Phil Mickelson feels like with many people watching. Look for pictures to come!

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families! St Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

May 27, 2012

Solemnity of Pentecost 2012
Acts 2:1-11, 1Cor12:3b-13, Jn 20:19-23

Reflection Question: When have you experienced the guidance and inspiration of the Holy Spirit?

Happy Pentecost, Happy Birthday to All! This day of Pentecost is the called the Birthday of the Church because this is where all that Jesus taught His disciples had taken root. Now, filled with the Holy Spirit, the Disciples take the message of Jesus and spread it to every nation and culture. May the Holy Spirit guide us as a parish, so that we are open to the Spirit’s gifts especially as we celebrate Ministry Day! Please stop by our tables between the New School and the Convent and look at the variety of ministries the parish offers. We cannot grow as a parish without your help. One child once said that The Holy Spirit is God’s inspiration. How true this is for us all. May the Spirit inspire us to embrace the ongoing presence and message of Jesus.

What’s Happening Around our Facilities: The hallway at the back entrance of the rectory is almost completed. The ceiling has been fixed. The walls are receiving a fresh new coat of paint to help make things look nicer. Thank you to all who are a part of Jane’s Garden. You help to beautify our grounds, especially during this time of year. Progress is being made!

Happy Memorial Day to All: While we take this time to enjoy our families, please take time out on Memorial Day to remember all of the men and women who have sacrificed their lives for us. It is because of them that we are here to worship our God today! Join us for the parade here in Hicksville, if you are able. Otherwise, at least take a moment of silence and prayer.

Religious Liberty! Please read the article in a series about Religious Liberty on the following page. We as a parish will be having at least 2 Holy Hours on Tuesday evening June 26th and July 3rd. We hope to also have guest speakers to help us reflect more deeply on this issue that affects us all.

Our Parish School of St. Ignatius recently held some very important and exciting events. On Wed., May 16th we honored the Blessed Mother with flowers from each grade. This past Monday, May 21st, though it rained, our students still had fun with field day indoors. May God continue to bless our students, parents, teachers, principals and staff. They do wonderful work.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families! St Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

May 20, 2012

Seventh Sunday of Easter
Acts1:15-26, 1Jn 4:11-17, Jn17:11-19

Reflection Question: In a world that likes to throw around falseness, how do you determine what is true?

Religious Liberty: The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty recently wrote a document entitled “Our First, Most Cherished Liberty- A Statement on Religious Liberty.” It was in the Long Island Catholic April 18, 2012 issue. You can find it at  We plan on putting the document on our parish website soon.

The Bishops are encouraging each Diocese and parish to speak out for the protection of our religious liberty. For our part, you will see 7 articles promoting religious freedom. The first article was published last week. The second one follows in this week’s bulletin. On the dates between June 14th and July 4th we hope to provide something more substantial in helping us all become more aware of the threats to our freedom by our government.

Please read carefully, pray, reflect and speak out for truth and justice. This is not just a Catholic or Christian matter. This is a Religious matter affecting all Religions. “If our obligations and duties to God are impeded, or even worse, contradicted by the government, then we can no longer claim to be a land of the free, and a beacon of the hope for the world.”-Excerpt from “Our First, Most Cherished Liberty-A Statement on Religious Liberty” USCCB

PS-Join us for our Annual Golf Outing next Tuesday May 29th! I am practicing my putting.

Please note the many events happening at St Ignatius Loyola next Sunday, May 27, 2012 Confirmation: Next Sunday, May 27, 2012 the parish will be confirming Catholics at the 11AM Mass who are baptized and have received the Eucharist. Confirmation makes one a full member of the Church where one is re-strengthened by the Holy Spirit to serve as a witness for Christ Jesus and His Church.

Crowning of the Blessed Mother: Since May is dedicated to the Blessed Mother, we will crown her as Queen of Heaven and Earth at the conclusion of the 12:30PM Mass next Sunday, May 27th in our Stations of the Cross Garden. Please join our First Holy Communicants for this special event.

Ministry Fair-Sunday, May 27, 2012: Join us for our Ministry Fair next Sunday after the 9:30AM, 11:00AM and 12:30PM Masses. Perhaps you might be interested in serving Jesus by joining a ministry that fits your gifts and talents.

Thank you, Thank You, Thank you –First Holy Communions: Thank you to all who gave us such beautiful First Holy Communions these past 3 weeks. We thank most especially our Religious Ed, St. Ignatius Parish School and Music Ministries! The liturgies were beautiful and inspiring. Children, please remember to ask your parents to bring you to church on Sundays or Saturday nights!

Diocese of Rockville Centre Catholic Ministries Appeal 2012 - Parish Totals: Thank you to all who gave to the Catholic Ministries Appeal 2012. When we reach our goal of $80,000, St. Ignatius receives a significant share from the Appeal. As of: 5/15/2012 Pledges $54,586.00 No of Donors 298 Percentage of Goal 68%

Where Oh Where is Fr. McCabe??? : Fr. Joe McCabe is traveling through the Western Caribbean to the islands off the coast of Venezuela. He is on a Mission Trip. Please pray for his success!

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

May 13, 2012

Sixth Sunday of Easter
Acts 10:25-26,34-48; 1Jn4:7-10; Jn 15:9-17
Mother’s Day

Reflection Question: How (does/did ) your Mother (Parent, Grandparent, Guardian) reveal the love and presence of God for you?

Sunday May 27th Pentecost Ministry Fair Day
In order for many of our ministries( parish organizations) to bear fruit here at St. Ignatius, we need more people like you to help. On Sunday May 27th,
we will hold a Ministries Fair Day before and after the 9:30am, 11am, 12:30pm Masses. Please stop by between the new school and the convent to see where the Lord may be calling you to serve our parish. As we prepare for the Ministries Fair Day, please read the following entitled “Awareness Weekend” and how we can belong more deeply to our faith and church through prayer.

Awareness Weekend
The freshness of spring and the new life of Easter aid us in renewing our commitment to a Christ–centered way of life. This weekend we begin our annual stewardship renewal with Awareness Weekend. Awareness Weekend calls us to be aware – conscious – that all that we are and all that we have has been given to us by God. Each one of us has been, and continues to be, gifted by God. When we realize that all has been given as a gift, our natural response is gratitude. We cannot help but say “thank you” for what we have received. One important way we can thank God is through prayer. Prayer is our grateful response to God’s gifts and a natural way to continue to belong more deeply.


First Holy Communion: Congratulations to all of our children who received their First Holy Communion on April 28th, May 5th & May 12th. May God continue to bless them and their parents as they strive to remain close to Him by bringing their children to Mass on Saturday Night or Sunday.

Please continue to pray for our children and their parents who have yet to receive their First Holy Communion Saturday, May 26th.


What’s Happening Around our Facilities

The ceiling and the walls in the back area of the rectory are really beginning to look very nice. Thanks to our maintenance men for their hard work. Progress!

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim

May 6, 2012

Fifth Sunday of Easter
Jn 15:1-8

Reflection Question: What good works do you want our parish to produce more abundantly?  How can I help make that happen?

One of the things that fascinated me in school were the projects that we did in science class. One such experiment was placing a celery stick into water that was changed with food coloring. Over a period of time, you could see the movement of the colored water pass up through the stick, eventually reaching the top leaves of the celery. The celery becomes the same color of the water, because the water moves through small tubes called capillaries and permeates the whole plant. This is called capillary action.

This example reminds me of today’s Gospel from John where Jesus says “I am the vine you are the branches, whoever remains in Me and I in him will bear much fruit”(Jn 15:5). When we remain close to Jesus, He permeates our lives. Just like a branch receives its nutrients from the vine of a tree and becomes a part of that tree, so do we become more like Jesus if we remain close to Him each day of our lives, through prayer, the Mass, the ultimate expression of our faith, the reception of the sacraments and in sharing our faith with one another. “The more closely we are united to Christ by faith, charity and good works, the more intensely He lives in us and bestows on us continually a new life of grace”( Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalene).

As we continue this Easter Season, may we, as a parish, continue to bear the fruit of Jesus by remaining close to Him and by going to His mother and our Mother Mary, in the month of May, because Mary leads us in the right direction.


First Holy Communion: Congratulations to all of our children, who received their First Holy Communion on April 28th , and their parents. May God continue to bless you and help you remain close to Him by bringing your children to Mass on Saturday Night or Sunday. Please continue to pray for our children and their parents who have yet to receive their First Holy Communion May 5th, 12th and 26th.


Golf Outing Tuesday May 29th Town of Oyster Bay Golf Club: Let’s make this a real St. Ignatius Communal Event. Fr. Thom Costa, Pastor of Our Lady of Mercy and I will have a putting contest at the conclusion of the outing. This day is a combined effort with Our Lady of Mercy Parish. We have 36 participants from SIL. Let’s make it 50! Come and support the parish! More details to follow in future bulletins.


Sunday May 27th Pentecost Ministry Fair Day: In order for many of our ministries( parish organizations) to be Ministries Fair Day before and after all the Masses. Please stop by and see where the Lord may be calling you to serve the parish.


What’s Happening Around our Facilities: A big thank you to all of those who have responded to the request in cleaning and varnishing our benches. Stay tuned for more information. We are still working on the back entrance way of the rectory. Thank you to Randy, our maintenance man, and Bruce Wimbiscus Progress is coming.


School Play: Thank you to all in our parish school for doing such a wonderful job with the school play on Friday April 27th. All of our children did just a beautiful job. Thanks especially to Sr. MaryAnn Noonan, Sr. Mary O’Donnell, Mrs. Allison Nurick and all who had a part in the production of the play to make it a success! God bless you.

May God bless you and Mary, our May Queen, keep you and your families. St. Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim

April 29, 2012

Fourth Sunday of Easter
Acts 4:8-12, 1Jn3:1-2, Jn 10: 11-18
Good Shepherd Sunday/ World Vocations Day

Reflection Question: Who do you consider are the Good Shepherds in today’s world? In what ways do you consider Jesus as your Good Shepherd?

The image of the Good Shepherd has been one of the most comforting images used throughout Christian history, particularly in the early Church to help those facing persecution. Jesus as the Good Shepherd, is that humble caretaker who gives His life for His sheep. He is not forced to do so. The Good Shepherd chooses to give His life for the sheep He knows by name and loves to the end. The sheep depend on Him for survival. Jesus called the apostles and others to shepherd in His name. He wanted them to act with responsibility, humility and great care like a shepherd, who, not out for money or power, gives his life to save his sheep. They were not perfect, but they eventually became good at shepherding, transformed by the power of Resurrection life. So can, who are leaders, if we are open to the Risen Lord!

Jesus continues to sends Good Shepherds in His name through the ordained priesthood and religious life. These are men and women who have heard the call and give of their lives each day to build and lead Jesus’ Church. Please pray for two of our very own on the road toward the ordained priesthood: William Cassese, studying in the College program at Cathedral Seminary Residence and St. John’s U. andTristan Farrell, studying at Cathedral Preparatory Seminary.



The Diocese sponsors a Vocations, Holy Hour/Dodgeball Game for youth lead by Fr. Brian Barr, to pray for vocations. This has normally taken place at the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception in Huntington once a month from September to May on a Friday evening from 7-11pm . The purpose of the Holy Hour is to pray for vocations to the ordained priesthood and religious life in the Catholic Church. Beginning this September, for one Friday a month, the Vocations Holy Hour will take place here at St. Ignatius! The event brings youth and young adults from all over the Diocese of Rockville Centre numbering close to 500 people. I am very excited that this Diocesan event will take place here at St. Ignatius. Thanks to Bishop Murphy and Fr. Brian Barr, our weekend priest, God has certainly opened a big window here at St. Ignatius. Please stay tuned for more information in the future. We will need your help in making this event holy, safe and successful.



I want to welcome two seminarians Jeff Yildirmaz and Christopher Mirabal, from the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception in Huntington, who will be speaking to us about vocations  in relationship to their own vocation to the ordained priesthood. We ask God to bless them and all of our seminarians who are listening and answering the call of Jesus to “come and follow Me.” Pray for more vocations to the ordained priesthood and religious life.

We welcome back Fr. Francis Arackal OP (Dominican), teaching in Rome, who will be serving here at St. Ignatius until June 29th. Many of you know Fr. Francis from being here in the past. Fr. Francis will be celebrating Mass, meeting with people and visiting the sick while here. Please give him a warm St. Ignatius greeting and welcome.


What’s Happening Around our Facilities


We have a few benches in our Prayer Garden that need cleaning and varnishing. I am looking for some generous parishioners to give their time to this project. Please contact me at the rectory if you would like to help. THANK YOU!

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim


April 22, 2012

Third Sunday of Easter
Acts 3:13-15, 17-19; 1Jn 2:1-5a; Lk 24:35-48

Throughout these 50 days of Easter, concluding Pentecost Sunday (May 27th), we will hear and read of different experiences of the Risen Lord Jesus. Who is Risen Jesus, what did He look like after the Resurrection? We know two things, He definitely was not a ghost (like Casper). This Sunday’s Gospel tells us that He asked his disciples for something to eat and they give Him a piece of cooked fish, which He ate right in front of them. We also know that He was not a resuscitated corpse for the disciples, including Mary Magdalene, did not recognize Him at first, until He called them by name or spoke to them on what happened and why He had to suffer and die. We also know that the disciples on the road to Emmaus, the passage before this present Gospel, recognized Him in the “breaking of the bread.”

This Risen Jesus has what we call a glorified body— something that we one day will attain, after our death, because of our Baptism. No one knows exactly what that looks like until they are one with the Lord. It is a state in which many of our loved one’s now share, and one that we all look forward to one day. This is the hope that carries us through each day of our lives.

In the meantime, we can recognize the Risen Lord as did the disciples through words. We can come to know Him through the Scriptures, the Word of God we read at home and what we hear at Mass each week. We can come to know Him through the words of the priest/deacon, in his homily and in the prayers where he leads us. We come to recognize the Lord, most especially, through the breaking of the consecrated (blessed) bread at the Eucharist, where the priest speaks the words “this is My Body, this is My Blood.” We come to recognize Jesus through the words we share with one another. Jesus said “where two or three gather in My name there am I in their midst.” Jesus is here, He is risen. May we take time to pay attention and not miss Him in the words spoken and written in our midst.


First Holy Communions - Please pray for all of our children who are preparing to receive their First Holy Communion April 28th, May 5th, 12th, and 26th.


Golf Outing Tuesday, May 29th Town of Oyster Bay Golf Club Lets make this a real St. Ignatius Communal Event. Even though I do not golf, I’ll be there for the last hole. This event will help St. Ignatius!!


What’s Happening Around our Facilities

Work is now being done on the floor next to the south entrance of the church, near the Blessed Sacrament Chapel. Our parking lot is being reviewed to see what we can do with a sink hole in the back and other pot holes along the way. The window on the white house will soon be replaced, as will the ceiling in the rectory near the back entrance way. Since Good Friday, we noticed that some of our emergency lights have been broken around the church. Also, one of the underground sprinklers was damaged in front of the upper school. Though there is no hard proof, it looks like vandalism. A sign of the times. If you are driving by St. Ignatius, just take a peek to see that no one is damaging our property. Four, Six, or even Eight eyes are better than two. St. Ignatius is a house to all of us.


Catholic Ministries Appeal Right now we are at 63% of our goal! We encourage you to keep up the great work. Your contributions, big or small, will help St. Ignatius.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

April 15, 2012

The Second Sunday of Easter
Divine Mercy Sunday

Reflection Question: When do you find forgiving easy? When is it difficult?


Throughout Lent, and particularly the days of the Sacred Triduum, so many of you have shared your time and talents in order to make our celebrations here at St. Ignatius Loyola meaningful and beautiful, and so on behalf of our priests, sisters and parish staff, we offer our thanks to our many liturgical ministers and staff, including our wonderful adult and children's choirs, altar servers, lectors, extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist, ushers, church sacristan, our Martha's Guild, and our maintenance who worked diligently to make the liturgies so meaningful. In serving together, you have helped Jesus come alive here in Hicksville! This is what the Resurrection is all about. He comes through each of us as He does through the Scriptures and the Sacraments. When we serve our parish, we allow the Lord to open our hearts to see Him and spend time with Him and live out His word. Then we, like St. Thomas the Apostle, can say "My Lord and My God."

Most especially, a sincere word of thanks to so many of you who faithfully joined us to worship and pray - you filled our church and made the effort of so many more than worthwhile.

We pray that the Easter Season, from the Day of th e Resurrection to the day of Pentecost, may renew within us our resolve to live as God's people. May the message of Easter offer us hope in God's power to transform any darkness in our lives into life and light.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families! St. Ignatius, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

April 8, 2012

Easter 2012—Cycle ABC

Back in 2003, you may remember we had a major blackout all up and down the East Coast into Canada. I remember it well. I just began the Lord’s work in my previous parish and was testing the lights in the Church to see what switch belonged to a particular light. That is when the power went down. At first, I thought I did it. But, it was greater than me. The night was so dark you could barely see your hand in front of your face. But what was so striking was the light from the stars and the camp fires in different back yards. The dark seemed no longer severe anymore.

It was then that I realized that even the smallest amount of light can shatter the greatest amount of darkness. Today we see in the Gospel that it was still dark outside the first Easter morning and the disciples were quite afraid. This darkness represented their doubts and fears. Jesus, their Lord and Teacher, was taken from them. Imagine their surprise when the body of Jesus was no longer in the tomb.

First they think His body was taken. How could this happen.? But then from the first witness of the Beloved Disciple, who did not even have to enter the tomb, to Peter to Mary Magdalene, they slowly realized that Jesus’ body was not taken. He had risen from the dead. Jesus had become that light for them and for the world that shattered the darkness of sin and death.

It is because of Jesus’ resurrection that we are here today. In fact, every Sunday we celebrate Jesus’ Resurrection. Only this Sunday makes up the central part of our faith and who we are as Christians. If Jesus did not rise from the dead, our faith would be a sham. St. Paul tells us that if Christ had not risen from the dead, our preaching is empty, our faith is worthless- we would be the most pitied of people.

As we see with the disciples, Jesus is the light that gets brighter in the lives of His Apostles and in our lives. When He greets them, He does not chastise them for leaving him, but only says “Peace be with You.” When we read about the empty tomb, we notice that the stone has been removed, the clothing of the dead body was put in its place - meaning that nothing can keep Jesus down or away from us or the world. More important than the empty tomb, are His appearances to His disciples. This shows us that Jesus has conquered death and the good news of eternal life has flooded into our world and our lives.

What is our response? Our response is to live a Life that shows we are Christian. We are to live our Baptism where we began to share in the risen life of Jesus. We need to celebrate His risen presence at weekly Sunday Mass, practice forgiving others and seeking forgiveness, and cleaning out our inner closets that represent darkness and death like greed, pettiness, jealousy, and excessive pride, say yes to truth and no to falsehood and deception.

This Easter Season, look for your or your children’s baptismal candle and light it once again. When you do, remember that Jesus is always there with you and He can help you overcome any challenge and any form of darkness that enters your life. We can be like the beloved disciple who first “saw and believed” by seeing the Lord from our hearts with eyes of Easter faith. Recall the words of President John F. Kennedy who said “its better to light a candle than to curse the darkness!”


What’s Happening Around our Facility

On Saturday March 24th, the police were at our rectory door around 9:30pm. We learned that three men had attempted to break into the white house. Thanks to alert people, the men were caught and taken out of the building. No one was hurt. However, one of the windows was broken by a large brick that had been thrown into it. This is a sign that lighting needs to go up around this building. We will be putting up flood lights and other security measures. Security is very important especially here in the downtown area of Hicksville.


On behalf of our staff, our sisters and priests of the parish : Fr. José, Fr. McCabe, Msgr. Bennett and myself , we wish you a very happy and blessed Easter. May the Risen Christ permeate your lives and be with you always so that you can live in His love forever! May God bless you and Mary Keep you and your families. St. Ignatius, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

April 1, 2012

Palm Sunday
With Friends Like These . . .

This year we hear the Passion from the Gospel of Mark. One notable feature of this reading is the theme of Jesus’ abandonment by his disciples. First, the leaders of the disciples, Peter, James, and John, cannot even support Jesus in His agony in the garden; they fall asleep—three times. Then there is Judas, who seeks out the chief priests to make a deal with them; the disciples who flee when He is arrested; and Peter, who denies Jesus three times. The crowds who cried “Hosanna!” a few days before now cry for His death. Even Simon the Cyrenian has to be forced to help him carry the cross.

What does this tell us? With friends like these, who needs enemies? No; the point is that Jesus died specifically for these people, not because they were once friends, but because they were sinners who needed Him. All but one of them ended up as saints. The one who didn’t was Judas, who gave up on Jesus instead of coming back to Him for forgiveness.  When we find ourselves in sin, when we think that everything we do is wrong, or when we think we can’t possibly deserve to be loved by God—that is when God can help us, if we just stop hating ourselves and start loving and trusting the Lord. It is not the time to pretend we have avoided the big sins, or to brag about some of the good we may have done. Instead of trying to convince God that we deserve mercy, simply agree that you need help. God loves sinners who know they need forgiveness and don’t deserve it.

But maybe you have already been forgiven and wonder what’s next. Remember the ones you would not expect to support Jesus. The centurion supervising His crucifixion proclaims Him Son of God. A member of the Sanhedrin gives Jesus a burial place. The women are there to the end. These were people who did not claim to be worthy; they just did what they could to show their love. Each morning when you wake up, ask Jesus, “What can I do for you today?” and do what you can.

Fr. Jim,

March 25, 2012

Fifth Sunday of Lent
John 12:20-10

Reflection Question: What attachments in my life (things, habits or people) do I need to lose or lay down so I can follow Jesus more closely?

We have entered into the first few days of Spring and already the weather is warm enough for the buds of the cherry blossoms and forsythia to start sprouting and for flowers to start blooming. This time of the growing season connects with today’s Gospel about the grain of wheat dying so that it will produce much fruit.

Very few of us have actually seen a seed germinate. When a seed is in the soil, the skin encasing it splits open. Next the seed splits in two and gradually it grows smaller as it nourishes the new plant. Eventually, the seed disappears altogether. We probably would not know what the seed looked like once the plant grew and bloomed.

The image of a seed dying to produce great fruit is the image of our spiritual life. Like a farmer, God is always planting seeds in our hearts - waiting for them to “die” so that they can bear fruit. Each season has its own kind of seeds to die. There are parts of us that need to break open so that new life can come forth from our life. When Jesus speaks of dying and rising, He is telling us that during this Lent there are   certain attachments that we need to let go of, that need to die or to be laid down that are preventing us from following Him. In order to follow Jesus, we need to obey God’s commandment of love and trust in His calling. This demands sacrifice in marriages, families and relationships.

Deacon Frank Bice clearly explained this image of dying and rising in the beautiful mission he lead for us this week. If you have not been able to participate in the Mission, please pick up a copy of his book “Your Cross is your Gift.” There are more copies found here in Church.

Deacon Frank said that life is not so much about the “destination” as it is about the journey and being faithful in living a right relationship with God and one another. That means allowing to let “die” things like excessive pride, what I always want to do and that I am always right. May God bless each and everyone of us during these last two Lenten weeks of preparation for our Easter celebration, as we seek to do God’s will and live in His love , which is ours forever.


Calling All Children Grades 2 thru 4 for a Palm Sunday Procession Parade!!!

Please read this announcement from our Religious Education Office: In just one week, our Parish will be celebrating the beautiful Feast of Palm Sunday and Jesus’ entrance into Jerusalem with a Palm Sunday Children's Parade. Children in grades 2nd through 4th are invited to participate in the Palm Sunday parade on April 1st at the 9:30am mass. The children will be lining up along the center aisle of the church with their palms in hand and welcome Fr. Jim into the church, just like when Jesus entered into Jerusalem. The first few pews will be saved for the children to sit during Mass. If your child is interesed in participating, please contact the religious Education office at 935-6873.  Please give your child's name, age, grade and a phone number wear you can be can reached.


What’s Happening Around our Facility

As you entered into our Church this past week, did you notice anything different??? We purchased brand new red mats for the doorways. I think the red color of the mats highlights the red carpet in the Church and the red trim around the windows. If anyone is willing to help cover the costs, donations are accepted and greatly appreciated! We have also purchased new lights to make the facility a bit brighter at night so we can all be safe.


Golden Wedding Anniversaries

This Spring, couples who have been married 50 years or more will be honored on Sunday April 22nd at St. Lawrence in Sayville and on Sunday May 20th at Maria Regina Church in Seaford both beginning at 2:30pm. Couples may register to attend ONE of the celebrations.  Registration forms are at the rectory and registration must be received by the Office of Worship by April 5th for Sayville and May 3rd for Seaford. Any questions, call 516-678-5800 Ext. 207.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

March 18, 2012

Fourth Sunday of Lent
John 3:14-21

Reflection Question: What do you find loveable in the World today?

“Your Cross is Your Gift”
Please join us here at St. Ignatius Loyola for our Annual Lenten Mission which will take place on three evenings Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday March 19th-21st at 7:30pm here in Church. Our Mission will be presented by Deacon Frank Bice. Each talk will be given in the context of Mass. Deacon Frank, who is a paraplegic, promises to be a blessing for our parish as he will speak about the Cross in light of his experience of Faith!


What’s Happening Around our Facility

We discovered a leak in the back of the rectory because of a steam pipe going into the radiator. Thanks to AMD, our contracted plumbing company, the pipe has been replaced. As a result of this leak, we need to replace a part of the ceiling. The sacristy drop ceiling looks beautiful. 


Have you noticed the light over the front of the “Old School” at night on E. Nicholai Street? Thanks to Harold, our Facilities Manager, the light has been fixed and we don’t have to walk in the dark after 7pm.


For those interested in helping with some Spring Cleaning around our parish grounds, please contact Rosemary, our Pastoral Assistant, at the rectory office. Calling All YOUTH: I am asking for some of our youth to help too!!! It is a great way to earn community service hours. Stay tuned for a date.



We have many young people who are making a difference for our parish, our community and our nation. They show us God’s love in the world today. Congratulations to the following groups who are striving to use their God-given gifts for the good of others:

The St. Ignatius Loyola School Girl Scouts "Lego Chicks" robotics team won the Championship Award at the Long Island FIRST Lego League Finals Tournament March 4, 2012. Out of approximately 90 teams, they took 1st place in all categories. The team has been invited to represent Long Island at the 2012 Food Factor Invitational Open Championships, where teams from around the world will come together to compete, via invitation only 2012 at Lego Land in Florida. Contact our school if you would like to support their trip.

Boy Scout Troop 382
Thank you to Boy Scout Troop 382 for helping our Human Services Parish Outreach to fight hunger.  A week ago Saturday, our Boy Scout Troop 382 brought in about 2, 289 pounds of food from their most recent food drive. It was exciting to see our young people and their leaders doing the work of Jesus - following His mandate of feeding the hungry and the poor.

Respect Life
The Respect Life Office has announced that two St. Ignatius Loyola School students have been named finalists in this year's Respect Life contest, the theme of which was "I came so that all might have life and have it to the full." Bridget Maloney is a finalist for her entry into the Essay Level 1 category, and Katelyn Tuzzolo is a finalist for her entry into the Photography Level 1 category. The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on March 22nd at St. John the Baptist High School.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim,

March 11, 2012

Third Sunday of Lent
John 2:13-25

Reflection Question:  When is it appropriate to express justified anger? How do you think believers should express love and respect for God’s house?

Anger is a huge emotion that we all deal with at one time or another. Often, negative ideas are associated with the word anger. This is true when anger becomes passive and/or aggressive. Many people in our world today have anger problems for one reason or another. Anger can be inappropriately expressed by aggressive driving, physical abuse and violence from guns, such as the recent tragic incident at Chardon High School in Ohio.

Anger is seen in a different light however, as expressed by Jesus in John’s Gospel. There are circumstances in life when anger is appropriate, especially when it is expressed facing an issue of injustice.  We can call it Christian assertiveness. 

The Temple served as the heartbeat of Jewish life. It was not just a church on a street corner, but the center of worship, music, politics and society. There was no surprise that the Temple was filled with activity and a marketplace. Pilgrims would pay a tax and buy animals to offer to the Lord for worship. The problem was that the sellers were abusing this service by charging more than necessary.

The pilgrims, who came to worship God were exploited for greater profits. Jesus was angry over this corruption. He could not stand to see the ordinary person being exploited in the name of religion. Jesus was correct to express His anger at this injustice and to overturn the system.

There have been circumstances of injustice in our own Church and in our world where we are challenged to speak up like Jesus. The scandals from 2002 could have been avoided if more people were unafraid to call out the evils that existed from its beginning. We as a Church should be angry with our government for trying to push its authority over our constitutional right of the freedom of religion.  If we remain as the silent majority in our country, then we allow the voices of secularism to bull doze its way over our own religious freedoms and rights.

During this Third week, we are reminded that Jesus is now the new Temple, the Word made flesh where God has made his dwelling for us. May we make Him the center of our lives and put his Word into practice so that our worship is not just an empty exercise.


Lenten Mission As a sign in living our faith seriously, may we all take time to participate in our Lenten Mission coming up March 19-21 at 7:30pm given by Deacon Frank Bice entitled “Your Cross is Your Gift.” This is where we can take time out of our busy lives and let the Lord in to shape our hearts so that we may follow Him more closely. Please read the bulletin for more details.


What’s Happening Around our FacilityWork is now completed in the sacristy to repair the damaged tiles from water leaks. We are have a new drop-ceiling which will help make the sacristy look more presentable. We are also working on the inside of the rectory in the back hallway which has been facing water damage from a leaking pipe. Little by little the plant is improving.


How well do you know your Catholic Faith?
Circle the letter that correctly completes the statement.

On the Third, Fourth and Fifth Sundays of Lent, the Church celebrates rites called _______ for the catechumens preparing for Baptism.
a) scrutinies; b) mutinies; c) scattergories; d) exhortations.

Fr. Jim,

March 4, 2012

Second Sunday of Lent
Genesis 22:1-2, 9a,10-18; Mark 9:2-10

Reflection Questions—How do you listen to God’s beloved Son? What glimpses of glory have you witnessed that point to God’s presence in you life?

Obedience, is not an easy attitude to cultivate in one’s life unless one surrenders and listens to the one who asks of it. As children, we know how important obedience is to our spiritual and physical growth in life. Many of our parents wanted the best for us and wanted us to grow with moral values and a deep faith. As we grow in life, we develop independent spirits that want to follow our own desires or at least what everyone else is doing. Sometimes that collided with the obedience we should show our parents. If you did not listen to your mother or father or you did something you were not supposed to do, you were often punished in some way. Hopefully, the punishment came not out of revenge but out of love to show us a better way of life. Even though we may not have liked the punishment, we learned something that for a family to live well together, rules needed to be followed.

Obedience can even be freeing because that means that you put aside your personal interests to follow a greater good. That is what our Father in Faith Abraham did in the book of Genesis. The word obedience comes from the Latin ob audire which means to hear or to listen. Not knowing the future, Abraham believed in God’s promise and listened to God’s word when he moved to the new land of Cana at age 90 or so and when he nearly sacrificed his own son Isaac for the glory of God. This brought Abraham and his descendents abundant blessings in which he became the Father of many Nations.

Jesus, who is the fulfillment of the covenant given to Abraham, manifests a glimpse of His resurrection to the disciples on the mountain in the Transfiguration. While this is occurring, a voice is heard by the disciples  “this is my beloved Son, listen to Him” (Mk 9:7). The disciples were given the sign that they needed to listen to Jesus and focus on His words so that they would follow Him the rest of their lives, even through the cross of suffering and death. The Transfiguration occurred to strengthen them in the midst of the cross and remind them that only way they can have eternal life is to listen and be obedient to Jesus. The whole mission of Jesus was based on His obedience to the Father. He said in the garden “not My will but Yours be done” (Lk 22:42). This brought a freedom to Jesus, where he was not a slave to fear or the negative voices of His time, where he gave His life up so that we are given life eternal. In the end, the apostles chose to be obedient to Jesus’ command in taking up their cross which gave us a vibrant Church. The same can be said for us. There are many competing voices our world that will try to distract us from our mission in following Jesus through His Church. They can be voices of insecurity, selfishness, ingratitude, greed, bullying, and they never listen to the Church because it is behind the times.

Remember what God tells us “if you obey My voice you will be MY possession”(Exodus 19:5). When we obey God, we are no longer slaves to sin and we live as God intends. May this Lent be a time to examine our lives more closely to see just what we are listening to and to remind ourselves that there is only one voice, the voice of Christ Jesus that will lead to true freedom and everlasting life.


Thank You-Activities Committee—Thank you to our Activities Committee in sponsoring our Mardi Gras/Lenten fundraiser at Friendly’s this past Tuesday. It was a great success! It was wonderful to see many of you and to get to know your names. This was an important night to build community and have fun doing it. Look ahead for more events planned for the Fall of 2012.


Catholic Ministries Appeal—Next weekend we will have a speaker from Catholic Charities who will speak on the Catholic Ministries Appeal at all the Masses. As I wrote in my column a few weeks ago, our pledge goal was reduced to $80,000 from $112,000.


What’s Happening Around our Facility—The work on our brick above the sacristy is completed. Hopefully no more leaks. Work will now be done on the inside of the sacristy to repair the ceiling from leaks.

In the Spring, I would like to have a crew for Spring Cleaning around our grounds. If interested, please contact me at the rectory.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families.

St. Ignatius Loyola pray for us!

Fr. Jim

February 26, 2012

First Sunday of Lent
Mark 1:12-15

Reflection Question: In what ways do you want Lent to be a new beginning in your life as a Christian? What will you do to work toward these goals?

Can you imagine a movie scene illustrating the first part of today's gospel story? Jesus is out in the desert where He is put to the test or tempted by Satan. But He is also surrounded by wild beasts and angel attendants. It must have been an interesting forty days Jesus spent preparing to proclaim the Good News. "The reign of God is at hand," He announced in Galilee, and He called people to get ready for God's reign by reforming their lives.

Lent can be for us like a new day dawning--just like the one Noah and his family experienced when the flood was over. It is a time for us to enter into the desert of our lives and create a fresh beginning and a renewal of our covenant to live as God's people.


Our Lenten Spiritual Life

In the church, you will see black books that are used for your Lenten reflection. Please take them for you and your family members to read each day to help you with your Lenten journey.


What’s Happening Around Our Facility?

In addition to our convent roof, there are other projects that were recently completed. One blessing from Tropical Storm Irene in September was that we received some help with insurance money to fix internal damages in our convent and our church caused by the storm. With help from Network Adjustors, the ceilings of the third floor convent were restored as well as the walls in both stairwells at minimal cost to the parish. The walls were scraped and received fresh paint.

Also, the small roof on the south side of the Church, near the sacristy, was replaced. This will prevent further leaking of water from getting into the Church and the sacristy. Slowly but surely progress is being made!



Join us at Friendly’s for a family/parish night fundraiser this Tuesday February 28th from 5 to 8pm. You can come at any time! It will be an opportunity to meet your priests, have fun with other parishionesr and help the parish financially all at the same time. Thank you to our Activities Committee for making this event happen!


WELCOME іBienvenidos! Padre Roberto Olortegui

A warm welcome to Fr. Roberto Olortegui, who is visiting us from Peru. Fr. Roberto was the former rector of Fr. Jose in Peru. He will be with us till mid March.

God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Pray for Us!

Fr. Jim

February 19, 2012

7th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Mark 2:1-12

Reflection Question of the Week: As we prepare for the Season of Lent our question is, when was the last time I celebrated Jesus’ power of healing and forgiveness in the Sacrament of Reconciliation? What is stopping me from doing so now?

One of scenes that impressed me in this Sunday’s Gospel was the determination and the faith of the four men who helped their paralyzed friend. The house that Jesus was teaching in was quite small. It was basically made out of clay. So, not many could be present at any one time. You can imagine the crowd surrounding Jesus bent on His every word wondering what this “Messiah” “Miracle Man” was going to say or do next.

When the four men arrived to see Jesus, they quickly realized they could not get in through the front entrance. This obstacle did not discourage the men in bringing their friend to Jesus. They looked for another way. Their perseverance paid off when they were able to get up to the roof and lower the paralyzed man down to Jesus. The paralyzed man was able not only to walk again, but was forgiven of all of his sins by the Son of God because of the faith, care and concern of his four friends.

This Gospel of healing and forgiveness is a good lead way into the season of Lent that begins this Ash Wednesday, February 22nd. We are entering the Church’s Great Retreat of 40 days to spend a little more time with the Lord to reflect deeper in our hearts to see what in our lives needs to be purified and where we need to build our relationships more with God and one another.

During Lent, we focus on three traditional practices that help deepen our relationship with God and one another. They are Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving. This year, Pope Benedict XVI in his 2012 Lenten message, focuses on the importance of charity and how by our baptism we are all to show concern for our neighbor. St. Paul writes “we live not for ourselves but for the Lord”. To live for the Lord means to go out of our comfort zones and take care of one another.

The Pope writes that God asks us all to be “guardians of our brothers and sisters (Gen 4:9), to establish relationships based on mutual consideration and attentiveness to the well-being, the integral well being of others. Responsibility towards others thus means desiring and working for the good of others, in the hope that they too will become receptive to “goodness and its demands”. The Pope warns that indifference in our society today can result in a “spiritual amnesia” that numbs us to the suffering of others.

Pope Benedict clearly states that to care for others means that sometimes as Christians we need to challenge them with a “gentle fraternal correction when we see evil happening”. “As the Apostle Paul says: ‘If one of you is caught doing something wrong, those of you who are spiritual should set that person right in a spirit of gentleness; and watch yourselves that you are not put to the test in the same way” (Gal 6:1).

“In a world pervaded by individualism, it is essential to rediscover the importance of fraternal correction, so that together we may journey towards holiness. It is a great service then to help others and allow them to help us, so that we can be open to the whole truth about ourselves, improve our lives and walk more uprightly in the Lord’s ways”. May this Lent be a time of prayerful thought and devotion. May it also be a time where we are made more aware of the needs of our neighbor. To help another will help each of us through the paralysis of our own sins and weaknesses.

Happy Lent 2012! God Bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim

February 12, 2012

Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Mark 1:40-45

Reflection Question: Who are the Lepers of today? How do we react toward them; with compassion or ignorance?

Leprosy (Hanson’s Disease) is a chronic bacterial disease of the skin and nerves in the hands and feet and, in some cases, the lining of the nose. It includes a variety of chronic skin diseases. Leprosy goes back to the time of Moses.

During the time of Jesus, leprosy was a terrible disease for three reasons; First, it was excruciatingly painful to the person who had it. Second, those persons with leprosy were banned from the community and isolated because the disease was thought to be very contagious. Every time a leper walked within a few feet of people, he or she had to yell the words “unclean, unclean” so that people would move away from them. Third, because of the severity of the disease of leprosy, one was considered a sinner. So you can imagine what the leper in today’s Gospel was facing when he boldly came to Jesus and asked for His help.

This leper had great faith because he saw something special in Jesus. He trusted and believed in His Word. Once Jesus touched the leper, he was healed of the disease and restored back into the life of the community. Jesus took great risk in touching the leper because the Torah (Law) stated that anyone who touched a leper would also be considered unclean and isolated from society. The danger of isolation did not stop Jesus because he saw that His healing of those with various illnesses helped to usher in the Kingdom of God.

Jesus’ healing of the leper was only the beginning of His mission which culminated in the healing of all humanity from the leprosy of sin and death by his victory on the cross. Recently, Pope Benedict XVI stated that “all of the healings of Jesus were an anticipation of the victory He achieved through His death and resurrection.” May we allow Jesus to continue to heal us of our personal leprosies through our faith. May we also be that healing presence of Jesus by reaching out to the lepers of today. It is what Jesus wants us to do.


Catholic Ministries Appeal -Once again, we have begun a new season for the Catholic Ministries Appeal (CMA) which helps essential ministries in our Diocese to reach out to the poor, the vulnerable and people in need. For the past few years, our goal seemed unreachable for various reasons. This year however, the Pastors’ Advisory Committee of the CMA has graciously lowered our goal from $112,400 to $ 80,000. When we reach the goal of $80,000, the parish receives a rebate back. Stay tuned!


Propagation of the Faith-Fr. Joseph McCabe our priest in residence, will be speaking to us at all the Masses next weekend Feb. 18/19 for the Society of the Propagation of the Faith. Through the offering of Catholics worldwide, the Propagation of the Faith provides ongoing support for the pastoral and evangelizing programs of the Catholic Church in Africa, Asia, the islands of the Pacific and remote regions of Latin America. Please be generous as your means will allow.


Parish Celebration of Mardi Gras/Lent at Friendly’s -Join us at Friendly’s (Declo Plaza-285 S. Broadway Hicksville) on Tuesday February 28th at anytime between 5pm and 8pm for a parish Family Night at Friendly’s. A percentage of all sales will go to our parish of St. Ignatius Loyola. Tickets will be available for raffles and cash raffles. Look for the flyer in the bulletin which must be presented at the time of food purchase.


Spanish Choir to Sing at St. Patrick’s Cathedral-Our Hispanic Choir from the 7:15pm Spanish Mass will be singing at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, New York City, this Sunday Feb. 12, 2012 at 3:45pm for the Feast of Our Lady the Virgin of Suyapa , the Patroness of Honduras. Congratulations/Felicitaciones!

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families! St. Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim

February 5, 2012

Fifth Sunday In Ordinary Time
Gospel Mark 1:29-39

This week in Mark's Gospel, Jesus begins and ends his day with taking care of others. - Reflection Question for the Week When you are busy or tired, how do you respond to a family member or friend who wants your help or attention? How can this Gospel story inspire you to be more like Jesus?

Dear Parishioners: On January 20, 2012 President Obama's Health and Human Services Department announced that all health care plans must cover the procedures of sterilization, abortifacets and contraception. The rule is set to take place on August 1, 2012 . All religious organizations must comply to the rule by August 13, 2013. Under this new ruling, virtually all Catholic ministries-schools, hospitals, colleges and nursing homes will have to comply because we serve people of all faiths. In effect, this rule is forcing us to break our own rules and fall into sin. It is also a violation of conscience. We as Catholics can no longer be the silent majority or we shall end up being the silent minority.

Please read a summary of the article that follows taken from Catholic World News. After reading this article, I ask you go to the New York State Catholic Conference website and read Bishop Murphy's column in last week’s Long Island Catholic dated January 25, 2012 for more information. Please e-mail and/or write a letter to Senator's Schumer and Gillibrand protesting this horrific action. Senator Schumer Senator Gillibrand

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim


From Catholic World News January 20, 2012

Obama Administration Denies' Conscience Clause' Exemption on Contraceptive Coverage Brushing aside concerns about religious liberty and respect for individual consciences, the Obama Administration has announced that Church-related institutions will be required to provide contraceptive coverage for employees in their health-care plans.

The decision, announced on January 20th by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, guarantees a confrontation between the Obama Administration and the US Catholic bishops.

The bishops, along with a number of Catholic universities, had argued strenuously against including mandatory contraceptive coverage in health-care plans. Ironically, the administration’s decision was announced just a day after a speech in which Pope Benedict XVI told visiting American bishops that religious freedom is under attack in the US. The Pontiff specifically mentioned government initiatives that would “deny the right of conscientious objection” by forcing individuals and institutions to participate in activities they regard as intrinsically immoral. The US Bishops’ Conference had warned that the imposition of mandatory contraceptive coverage would be a clear violation of the conscience rights and an assault on religious freedom.

Calling the administration's decision "literally unconscionable," Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan, the President of the US Bishops' Conference, said that the ruling "has now drawn an unprecedented line in the sand.” He promised that the US Bishops would fight against implementation of the administration's plan. "In effect, the president is saying we have a year to figure out how to violate our consciences," he charged.

In a token response to the conscience-clause appeals, Secretary Sebelius announced that religious institutions would be given a one-year reprieve from the rule. While all other institutions will be required to carry contraceptive coverage by August 1st of this year, church-related institutions that apply for an extension will have until August 1, 2013 to comply. However, those institutions will be asked to refer their employees to other sources of contraceptive coverage Secretary Sebelius announced.

January 22, 2012

Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

This week beginning from Sunday, January 29th thru Sunday,  February 5th is Catholic Schools Week across this great land of the United States. The theme for Catholic Schools Week 2012 is “Catholic Schools: Faith, Academics, Service.”

The theme focuses on three priorities that Catholic schools establish that make them stand out from other educational institutions. Children are taught faith – not just the basics of Christianity, but how to have a relationship with God. Academics- which in Catholic schools are held to very high standards, help each child reach his or her potential. Service- the giving of one’s time and effort to help others, is taught both as an expression of faith and good character.

For us here at St. Ignatius Loyola, these are bittersweet moments for our students, their families, faculty, and staff as we are prepare to close our school at the end of the academic year in June. This will be the last time that St. Ignatius Loyola School will celebrate this special week. While we need to grieve this loss, we also need to celebrate the 104 years of fine Catholic Education established here in the center of Hicksville since September, 1907 under Pastor Fr. Lawrence Fuchs and the education of the Sisters of St. Dominic. Since that time, our faculty and staff have taught generations of children with dedication, commitment and faith. They have fostered an environment that has enabled children and parents alike to witness Christ’s message of peace, love and hope. While St. Ignatius Loyola School closes, she will always remain alive in the hearts of her students. No one or thing can ever rob our students of the foundation of education that has been built for them.

My gratitude to our principals Sr. Mary Ann Noonan & Sr. Mary O'Donnell and the entire faculty and staff for your love of Catholic Education and your love of our children. You have helped fulfill the mission of the school which is to “Teach as Jesus Did.” Our prayers are with you as you look ahead toward the horizon and new opportunities that await you.

I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for being supportive of our principals, teachers and school community following the announced closing of our school. Your prayers and kind words of trust and shared emotion is an indication of the deep level of faith and trust you have in God and His Church.

Many have asked me, that with the school closing, will we still be able to have religious education, scouting etc? The answer is simply YES, but of course. The two buildings, newer and older, are a part of the parish and shall remain so. They will continue to be primarily used for Religious Education, Parish Ministries and other Faith Formation programs. Our Spanish Community, CYO , Scouts, prayer groups, and other groups will continue to use the buildings as they have done in the past. Just because the school system is shutting down, does not mean that parish programs are going out with it. The parish will continue and with God’s help. We will become stronger and more vibrant in faith as we progress through the years ahead.

During this time period, the School and I will focus on the process of closing and celebrating the best of St. Ignatius. The Finance Committee and Pastoral Council and I will focus on future plans with the hope of the use of our buildings for rent by other organizations . In fact, some propositions are already being reviewed. Any future organization that uses our facilities must fit in with certain guidelines and regulations of the Catholic Church. They also need to be approved by the Diocese of Rockville Centre.

May we continue to pray for all involved in this difficult process. May we also entrust our school and her families to the Blessed Mother so that they are brought closer to Jesus for comfort, strength and wisdom. May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius, pray for us.

Fr. Jim

January 22, 2012

Third Sunday Ordinary Time

Question of the Week: When have you experienced the Kingdom of God? (Mark 1:14-40).

Last Monday, January 16th, the country celebrated the birthday of a remarkable man, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He was known for his bravery and his speeches in creating civil rights for all, most especially black Americans. This Sunday, Jan. 22nd is another special more somber day for our nation. It is the marking of the Supreme Court decision of Roe v. Wade back in 1973 that made abortion the law of the land. Please note: Because this day is on a Sunday, the Church will observe this anniversary on Monday Jan. 23.

What is interesting is this, Dr. King moved our hearts with his “I Have a Dream” speech which spoke about a nation where black and white would be together and all human beings would be held in respect and dignity. Our goal as Catholic Christians, is to remind our government leaders and our citizens of this great nation that Dr. King’s dream extends to those human persons born in the womb of a mother. Since Roe vs. Wade, there have been over 1 million babies aborted here in America.

In our world today, our culture is more concerned with the plight of an animal than a human being, most especially those in the womb. For example, it is against the law to kill a rattle snake in my home state of PA. Yet, a mother and father can choose to have an abortion any time they want. There is one bumper sticker that I saw one time that says it all:”SAVE THE BABY HUMANS”.

Protecting human life from the beginning of conception is not just a religious matter, it is also verified by science that human life is formed in the womb. The Church reminds us that God recognized each of us before we were born, and called us by name , so too may we recognize the value of each human life and pledge ourselves to continue to defend and nurture God’s greatest gift to us.” (1992 Respect Life Manuel NCCB). If we want to experience God’s kingdom on earth as Jesus brought it to earth, then each of us are called to speak up for the vulnerable babies not yet born in a mother’s womb.

What can we do to mark this sad day on Monday January 23rd?

1) For those who have reserved space, you can go on our parish March for Life to Washington which will join thousands of other Catholics around the country in Solidarity. Mass for our group begins at 5AM. If you cannot make the March, join us for Mass.

2) For those unable to go on the March, this is a day of fasting, penance and prayer. We can take time to pray silently in our homes, at work, outside or in Church. Pray not only for the dead but also for mothers who have committed an abortion or are contemplating one at this very moment.

This Monday, the main body of the Church will be available for prayer and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament with the conclusion of the 9AM Mass till 5PM. I invite all to come at any time.

PLEASE NOTE: If there are funerals, then the adoration will begin following the funeral Masses.

On behalf of the parish of St. Ignatius, I want to personally thank each of you who have contributed to our parish this Christmas. Our total Christmas collection to date is $48,667.92. On behalf of Joe Samoldulski, our Human Services Coordinator, I want to thank everyone who bought gift cards for the poor this Christmas. Your generosity is a witness to the words of Jesus who said “what you have done for others you have done for Me” (Mt. 25:40).

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius Loyola, pray for us!

Fr. Jim


January 15, 2012

Second Sunday in Ordinary Time
“Speak Lord, for your servant is listening.” Samuel 3:10

These are the words we hear in this Sunday’s Gospel by the young boy Samuel to God as he becomes the first prophet of the people of Israel. He goes to the High priest Eli asking what this is about. After some thought, Eli realizes that it is the Lord calling Samuel. So he tells Samuel that the next time he hears this voice calling him say “Speak Lord Your Servant is Listening.”

These words of Samuel are a great model of prayer for each of us. Often, when we pray, we feel we always have to say something to God. However, another element to the Catholic tradition of prayer is listening. The Lord constantly reveals Himself to us every day. If we want to discern what it is the Lord is saying to us, will we find out if we keep talking? If you have a friend, and we all do, who never stops talking to listen to you it can be very frustrating. A good relationship includes talking and listening especially in a marriage or friendship. The same is with God.

As we begin this new year, let us try listening to God for a change. Find a quiet place in your home, in a park like our prayer garden or the beach, present yourself before the Lord - take a few deep breaths in and out, and then focus on the biblical phrase “Speak Lord your servant is listening.” Stay in silence, and at certain moments especially when you are distracted, repeat these words of Samuel. Try this for 5 to 15 minutes a day . With every two weeks or so, increase the time. The Church calls this method Lectio Divina or praying with the Lectionary (Scripture). Listening to the Lord each day will help us to discover like the prophet Samuel, what the Lord is calling us to in life and where He is calling us, as He says “come and follow Me.” Can you hear God’s voice today? How will you answer?


Convent Roof - It is my joy to announce to the Parish that our convent roofs have been completed. Our Dominican Sisters, Srs. Mary, Kathleen, Joan and Karen no longer have to be exposed to the elements of rain, snow, ice or even bugs.

Both roofs, smaller and larger, were replaced by Mr. John Skenello and his crew form JSDN. I am grateful to him and his team as well as to Mr. Anthony Natale from Diocesan buildings department. With anything new comes a price. The parish now needs to pay back at least $80,000 to repay the loan. Luckily this will be interest free for at least one year. A very special thank you goes out to those who have contributed to this fund.


Christian Unity Week—Please join us on Sunday January 22nd for an Ecumenical Prayer Service at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church at 4pm. The church is located on the corner of Jerusalem and Old Country Road. This service marks Christian unity week. We will gather with our Christian brothers and sisters from the other denominations here in Hicksville. A good showing from St. Ignatius will show our spirit in helping to keep Christianity alive and well here in Hicksville.

May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius, pray for us!

Fr. Jim

January 8, 2012

The Epiphany of the Lord
The Little Drummer Boy

Today we reflect on the Three Wise Men who came from the East and brought rich gifts to Jesus. The gifts tell us about the givers. And these special gifts—gold, frankincense, and myrrh—tell us much.

When one king visited or sent an ambassador to another, he would give a gift of gold to show that he acknowledged the kingship of the other. So the first gift of the Wise Men tells us they recognized Jesus as king. The second gift is a type of incense, which was used in Jesus’ time to worship God. This gift shows the Wise Men paying homage to Jesus’ divinity. Oil, the gift of myrrh, is used to anoint the dying. It reminds us of Jesus’ suffering and death on the cross.

What gifts do we have for Jesus? Maybe we can take a hint from the Wise Men. If we acknowledge Jesus as king, maybe a better gift than gold would be pledging our obedience to him. Each day we can promise to live our vocation as best we can, to love those around us, and forgive those who hurt us.

A better way than burning incense to pay homage to Jesus’ divinity is taking time to pray throughout the day. Some people are able to attend daily Mass, others spend time in adoration before the Eucharist, or take even a few minutes of their lunch break to say the rosary.

As for the gift of myrrh, we can offer Jesus the crosses we bear each day. When we accept suffering in our lives, especially that caused by our sins, we give ourselves to Jesus as he gave himself for us on the cross.

The song “The Little Drummer Boy” reminds us that the best gift is not necessarily the most expensive one. Instead, it is the simple gift that only we can give. Let Epiphany remind us to offer our lives to Jesus each day.

Fr. Jim

January 1, 2012

“Mary kept all these things reflecting on them in her heart.” Lk. 2:19.
Happy New Year 2012!

We have just ushered in a new calendar year 2012 and we have wished 2011 goodbye. As we welcome in this year, I am sure we all hope and pray that this year will be better than last year. Of course we say this every year, and when we say this we are usually thinking about our economic situation, our family situation, our health, and what ever else applies to us in any given year. Hopefully this year will be better for us in all of these areas, and my greatest hope is that this year will be better for our relationship with God. As we celebrated last weekend, The Birth of Jesus and our birth to a new spiritual life, let us also celebrate this new calendar year with that same desire. May we make this year much better than it was last year as we hope to come closer and closer to God.

In making our New Year’s resolution in coming closer to God, who better to follow than Mary; the first tabernacle of Jesus, the Mother of God, Mother of the Church, Mother of us all. In this Sunday’s (New Year’s) Gospel of Luke, we see all the events that are occurring at the birth of Jesus; A bright star appearing, Angels announcing, shepherds coming and worshipping and later the Wise Men bowing before her baby, the God made human. While this was occurring, Luke writes “Mary kept all these things reflecting on them in her heart”.

What does this mean that Mary was reflecting on the events of her life in her heart. Not fully understanding everything about Jesus at the moment, Mary was praying. She was thinking about how God was working in her life through Jesus. While reflecting or praying, Mary was opened to God’s grace which helped her to understand God’s plan of salvation through Jesus and gave her the strength and the faith to face the problems and sufferings of life. Mary continued to reflect over certain events of Jesus such as; finding Him in the temple at age 12 preaching to scholars, Jesus being criticized and ridiculed by the scribes, Pharisees and her own family teaching threatening ideas, and most especially at the Cross where Jesus gave His life before her and gave her to the Church. Mary was able to say yes to God from the moment of Jesus’ conception to her own Assumption because she reflected and believed that what was promised to her and the people of Israel would be fulfilled in and through Jesus her Son.

Our goal is to do the same. May we like the Blessed Mother take time each day for at least 5 minutes to reflect over our life and see where God reveals Himself to us. This will help us know that no matter what is happening to us at any moment of our lives, God is with us at every step of the way until we are with God in Heaven.

To close, read the words of Pope John Paul II given in a homily on January 1, 2000.
At the beginning of the year, we trust in your motherly "memory", O Mary! We set out on this special path of salvation history, which is kept alive in your heart as Mother of God. To you we entrust the days of the new year, the future of the Church, the future of humanity, the future of the entire universe.

Mary, Mother of God, Queen of Peace, watch over us.


I would also like to express my thanks to everyone who was so thoughtful in giving the priests Christmas gifts. Your generosity was overwhelming and much appreciated. God bless you in the coming year!

On behalf of all the priests and staff of St. Ignatius, Happy New Year! May 2012 be filled with God’s grace and promise. May God bless you and Mary keep you and your families. St. Ignatius pray for us!

Fr. Jim

date last changed: 01/22/2013
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