Parish News

Each year at this time we gather as a family at ParishFest to celebrate the many diverse cultures that make up the Catholic Community of Princeton. A major component of this event is the sharing of ethnic dishes with one another. Because of the COVID 19 restrictions this year we cannot gather together to share a meal. However, we can still feed one another and the broader Princeton Community.

In order to help meet the needs of our community, the Pastoral Council in conjunction with the Parish staff and ParishFest team is sponsoring a food drive on the Sunday we would normally celebrate ParishFest.

Nonperishable food (no glass containers) will be collected from 8:00am to 3:00pm on Sunday September 13. All donations may be dropped off in the Church parking lot (allowing for social distancing). Food supplies will be donated to Arm in Arm.


Please consider donating:

PEANUT BUTTER

APPLESAUCE

RICE

IODIZED (OR KOSHER!) SALT

SUGAR

HONEY

FLOUR

ELBOW (OR ANY!) PASTA

SWEETENER

TOMATO SAUCE

ZITI (OR ANY!) PASTA

OATMEAL

ZITI (AGAIN! LOTS OF IT!) PASTA

OIL (IN PLASTIC BOTTLES)

On August 14, the Church celebrates St. Maximilian Kolbe and begs his intercession. As a child, Kolbe was granted a vision of Mary. Kolbe was a Polish Catholic priest and Conventual Franciscan friar. He was active in promoting the veneration of the Immaculate Virgin Mary, founding and supervising a monastery near Warsaw, operating a radio station, and running several other publications. Due to Kolbe's efforts to promote consecration and entrustment to Mary, he is known as the Apostle of Consecration to Mary.

In 1941, Kolbe's monastery was shut down by the Nazi's and he was arrested, imprisoned, and sent to Auschwitz. Continuing to act as a priest, Kolbe was subjected to violent harassment. That summer, one prisoner escaped from the camp, prompting the camp commander to pick ten men to be starved to death in an underground bunker to deter further escape attempts. When one of the selected men, cried out, "My wife! My children!", Kolbe volunteered to take his place.

From his prison cell, Kolbe led the prisoners in prayer and song in the face of death. After they had been starved and deprived of water for two weeks, only Kolbe remained alive. The guards wanted the bunker emptied, so they executed Kolbe by lethal injection. He died on Aug 14. His remains were cremated on Aug 15, the feast day of the Assumption of Mary. In 1982, Pope John Paul II declared Kolbe a saint and a "martyr of charity." Franciszek Gajowniczek, the man whose life was spared by Kolbe's sacrifice, was present at his canonization Mass in Rome.

The Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is celebrated on August 15, 2020. For this year's Mass schedule and to make a reservation, please click here. This year, the Assumption is not a Holy Day of Obligation; there is no specific requirement to attend Mass.

[T]he Immaculate Virgin, preserved free from all stain of original sin, when the course of her earthly life was finished, was taken up body and soul into heavenly glory, and exalted by the Lord as Queen over all things [...]. The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin is a singular participation in her Son's Resurrection and an anticipation of the resurrection of other Christians:

In giving birth you kept your virginity; in your Dormition you did not leave the world, O Mother of God, but were joined to the source of Life. You conceived the living God and, by your prayers, will deliver our souls from death.

CCC966

The Assumption of Mary, though a difficult mystery to try to fully understand, is an important one for us to contemplate, as we do while praying the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary. Though there are few details available to us, we know that because Mary was immaculately conceived and maintained a state of perfect grace for her entire life, she was freed from the sentence of death as we know it and was assumed - body and soul - into heaven with Christ.

Do you need a trip to the ER*?
It gives our parish great joy to be able to continue to offer the sacraments to our faithful! Join us this Friday and Saturday for more opportunities to grow in relationship with Christ!
*ER = Eucharist & Reconciliation

Don't forget: Mass Reservations close tomorrow at 12:00pm.
Make your reservation for this weekend right away!

"E"UCHARIST: First Friday Adoration
Friday, September 4, there will be Eucharistic Adoration in the Church from 9:00am until 12:00pm. Come spend some time with our Eucharistic Lord! Please be sure to follow the private prayer instructions for spending time in Church.

"R"ECONCILIATION: Weekly Confession
Beginning Saturday, August 8, the Sacrament of Reconciliation will be offered on a regular basis at St. Paul Parish on Saturdays from 4:00pm to 5:00pm. Proper care will be taken to ensure that all health risks are mitigated. Please review the guidelines below to help us ensure the health and safety of all!

After more than three months of Lent and Easter, we return today to the Sundays in Ordinary Time. We will be hearing from the Gospel of Saint Matthew for the rest of the year, with the first reading intended to prepare us in some way for the day's Gospel. The second readings proceed through several of Saint Paul's letters. As we settle down to summer living, these next few Sundays focus on what it is like to be a disciple.

Ominous indeed are Jesus' predictions of what faithful disciples will face. Challenging, his expectations of how courageous we should be. Jesus is straightforward about our obligation to bear witness in a dangerous, cynical world. His warning is matched to the first reading from Jeremiah. Whenever the Gospel issue is the cost of discipleship, we hear from that prophet whose life was a testimony to fidelity in the face of rejection and cruelty. Less dramatic, but no less painful, is the experience of many who today support Catholic teaching on a wide spectrum of moral or social issues. But our obligation to do so derives from our Baptism, which anoints us to the prophetic office, and from Confirmation, which strengthens us for witnessing by gift of the Holy Spirit.

It is important, then, for us to hear another command that Jesus issues three times in this one passage: Do not be afraid! God's providential love is evident all around us in the world of nature. If that divine love does not fail to take account of trials that befall the humblest sparrow, "sold for a small coin", surely it will not fail us, purchased at the price of Christ's precious blood. If we fear anything, perhaps we ought to be afraid that discipleship has cost most of us very little indeed. Let us pray to have hearts open to what the Lord is telling us.


Although we're limited in what we can do to honor Msgr. Rosie as he prepares to take up his new assignment, we want to ensure we do our best to express the gratitude in our hearts for the great gift of his priestly ministry during his time as pastor at St. Paul.

Join us for a drive-thru farewell, giving families/households the opportunity to greet Msgr. Rosie and express thanks for all he's done! We'll utilize the parish/school parking lot to facilitate a car line of well wishes.

Rain date: Sunday, June 28, 2020

Artisan breads have become very popular. Some small bakeshops specialize in them and only sell these special loaves. Supermarkets may have a dedicated section in the bread aisle for artisan bread. Artisan bread may be basic consisting of only flour, water, salt, and yeast; or it may be flavored with herbs and other ingredients added. What all breads that are called "artisan" have in common is that they are not mass-produced, but crafted. Making this bread is an art. Each loaf is unique. The gospel this Sunday is about bread. However, this bread is surely not mass-produced in some factory. It is not even artfully crafted in some small bakery or home kitchen, as special as that is. This bread is unique, unequaled, unsurpassed in its nourishment. This bread is more than a staple of life. It is Life.

In the gospel Jesus is the bread that is the living bread; this is all we need to "live forever." The reasoning is simple enough: by partaking of Jesus' Body and Blood we become what we eat—we become the "one body" (second reading) in which we all share. This is the "Holy Communion" that assures us of who we are as baptized Christians—the Body of Christ. This is why Eucharist is (and remains throughout our life) a sacrament of initiation: we are constantly being fed on the Bread of Life and constantly drawn more deeply into being who we are—members of the one Body of Christ.

As members of Christ's Body, we are to be his life poured out in our everyday good living. We are to give our life—his life!—unreservedly for others. As this living bread nourishes us, so are we to nourish others. The sacramental eating and drinking of Jesus' Body and Blood is the culmination and ritual manifestation of the self-giving of our everyday living. It is our strength for choosing to be who this bread makes us to be: the living Body of Christ given for others. The challenge ultimately issued by this solemnity is to be as giving as Jesus is. This is the way to eternal Life. Jesus giving himself as living bread is a foretaste of the Life that one day we will share eternally with him. Jesus is the "living bread that came down from heaven." When we eat this bread we "will live forever." The Life this bread gives is eternal.

Heaven is above. Forever is beyond. Life is fleeting. But Life eternal is here and now in Jesus, "the living bread" who "came down from heaven" to give himself "for the life of the world." We who eat his flesh and drink his blood have eternal Life now. Heaven is not above. Forever is not beyond. Life is not fleeting. Because Jesus is living bread. It is far too easy for us to file out of our pews or chairs into the Communion line, receive, return, leave after Mass is over, and get on with our lives. The food and drink that Jesus offers us in this memorial celebration requires of us conscious preparation, deliberate partaking, and ongoing savoring by how we live. The Divine Artisan crafts us to live more holy and self-giving lives. We can't just put on a costume or cloak of being Jesus' followers; sharing in the Body and Blood of Christ means that we share in Jesus' life of self-giving. This means becoming more aware of others' needs and responding to them; it means doing our everyday tasks well and out of love; it means being honest, just, and forgiving. Eternal life is the fruit of our transformation in Christ. We are to remain in him and are sent to be his Presence in the world.


On this solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, the focus is not so much on who the three Persons of the Trinity are, but rather on who we are as God's people in relation to the Holy Trinity. For God has sought us out and saved us through Jesus Christ, and given us a Spirit of adoption, so that we might call on God's name. God's self-revelation as Father, Son and Holy Spirit draws us ever deeper into a relationship of grace that begins in baptism, is nourished through the Eucharist and will come to fullness in the joy of eternal life.

The origins of the celebration of Trinity Sunday go all the way back to the Arian heresy of the fourth century, when Arius denied the divinity of Christ by denying that there are three Persons in God. To stress the doctrine of the Trinity, the Fathers of the Church composed prayers and hymns that were recited on Sundays as part of the Divine Office, the official prayer of the Church. Eventually, a special version of this office began to be celebrated on the Sunday after Pentecost.

While we can never fully comprehend the mystery of the Trinity, it is through God's self-revelation that we can know God as one in three persons. One God in relationships. Reflecting on the Trinity invites us who God created in his image and likeness, to be mindful that we too are created to be in relationship. First with God and then with one another. Our faith is alive as we live the relationship that God calls us to with one another. Religion can never be solely individualistic, it must be communitarian. We reflect the image of God as we celebrate, aid and come together. That is why Sunday liturgy is so important for us as Catholics. We celebrate our communion, relationship with God and one another, living the image in which we were created. How appropriate after celebrating the birth of the Church at Pentecost, that we celebrate the God who has made himself known to us and created us in his image and likeness. We are sisters and brothers invited through Jesus to be heirs to the divine life. A great God indeed do we worship. As a nation experiencing the crisis of the coronavirus and a national reflection on racism, our Christian faith reminds us that we are united in our common humanity to one another, sisters and brothers—called to be with one another for we are all members of God's one family!

With the announcement by the governor this week that larger religious gatherings may be conducted inside places of worship, Bishop O'Connell has published guidelines for the resumption of the celebration of sacraments in parish churches in the Diocese of Trenton. Bishop has decided that daily Mass with specific guidelines may resume on Monday, June 8 limited to 100 people and Sunday Mass with specific guidelines beginning on the weekend of June 13-14 limited to 1/3 of the church's seating capacity. The Parish Team of St. Paul will meet this Monday to discuss these guidelines and their implementation here at St. Paul. The resumption of the celebration of the sacraments necessitates adaptations and is not merely a return to normal since the coronavirus remains a serious threat. Each of us must continue to do our part to mitigate the spread of the virus particularly as we come together in larger groups so that we can be able to gather for Eucharist and nourish our spiritual lives through reception of Holy Communion. As we adapt to these new protocols, it is important to remember that the faithful of the diocese continued to be dispensed from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass. What is important is the opportunity to receive the blessed sacrament, not to fulfill an obligation. If Sunday Mass is not possible, because of limitations perhaps attending one of the daily masses to receive communion can substitute. If you wish to read the complete letter of the bishop, visit the diocesan website. We will publish the procedures for St. Paul Parish as we formulate them, in order to give everyone adequate time to make their decisions and understand what will be expected. I thank you in advance for your continued understanding and cooperation as we begin the process of resuming parish life.

Happy Pentecost! Today we conclude our fifty-day celebration of Easter and our celebration of the Paschal Mystery that we began on Ash Wednesday. This extraordinary time which none of us could have imaged nonetheless has enriched us as disciples of the Lord as we journeyed again to root ourselves firmly in the Lord. We have been renewed, reborn and reclaimed our Christian identity as children of God through our participation in Jesus' passion, death and resurrection. On this day that is often called the birthday of the church, we gather at the Spirit's urging to praise and thank our loving God for all that has been given to us in and through Christ Jesus. And let us rejoice in the movement of the Holy Spirit today, who calls us to continue the work of Jesus Christ and the church in our own lives.

The celebration of Pentecost is not just a remembrance of a gift given once to the apostles, but a renewal of the Spirit's presence and power through our prayer and worship. We must take seriously the words Jesus shared with us, that as he returns to the Father the gift of the Holy Spirit will be shared, a gift that will enable us to do great things in the name of the Lord. We believe not only in the Spirit, but the power of the Spirit alive and active in our day. Let us ready ourselves for Pentecost.

This Sunday our parish would have celebrate Ministry Sunday as part of our Pentecost celebrations. Although, this is not possible this year, I hope that part of our Pentecost celebration will embrace the spirit of Ministry Sunday. Ministry Sunday is a visible sign to us that the outpouring and gifts of the Holy Spirit are indeed alive and enthusiastically shared within our community. It is also an opportunity to thank those who have been faithful in serving our community as well as an opportunity for each of us to consider sharing our time and talent with a ministry particularly as we prepare in the coming months to move parish life from an online experience to in-person. Even if I am unable to volunteer time is there some special ministry I might remember in prayer? Support with my treasure?

We are called in baptism to continue to the mission of Jesus and his Church, strengthened in the Eucharist and empowered by the Spirit. We are called in baptism to continue to the mission of Jesus and his Church, strengthened in the Eucharist and empowered by the Spirit.

I am most grateful to all those who have participated in our online parish experiences through participation in Mass, the rosary, meetings and faith enrichment sessions. I thank you for taking the extra effort to continue your financial support in these times of uncertainty and various commitments and requests. Your generosity has enabled us to continue to be a source of hope and surety in the Lord. I am certain that we will continue with an online presence as well through this transition so that all particularly those in vulnerable circumstances will continue to experience and fee apart of our Catholic Community in Princeton. God bless and let us pray: Lord, send out your Spirit and renew the face of the earth!