Our Migrant Neighbors Need Your Help

09-24-2023Pastoral Reflections

The Parish Family at St. Mary’s in collaboration with The St. Vincent DePaul Society is collecting donations for the immediate needs of our migrant brothers and sisters housed in Franklin. There are bins at the Elevator Lobby, Upstairs in the Main Church Lobby and at the side, back wooden door of the Church for donated goods. Thank you for your generous support!


Encourage Deeper Understanding Of Scripture

09-17-2023Pastoral Reflections©LPi — Father John Muir

When I was in second grade, my prized possession was a metal Star Wars-themed lunch box. After school one day, another student ripped it from my hands. I helplessly watched in horror as my classmate threw it to the ground and violently stomped it into an unrecognizable heap of junk. I came home covered in tears of shame and rage. After a few months, I never thought about it again … until I was almost thirty years old and on a retreat to prepare for ordination to the priesthood.


September 2023

09-14-2023Reflections and Resources

Students have returned to school and we are getting back into the “academic year” rhythm of things. The Church continues its celebration of Ordinary Time, reminding us more and more about how we are to live as followers of Christ. For instance, in the gospel on the 22nd Sunday of Ordinary Time (September 3), Jesus tells us that "[w]hoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.” Challenging words, for sure, but ones which are spoken by someone who knows about denial, suffering and death, someone who has “walked the walk and talked the talk”. These are words which also come with a guarantee from Jesus himself that he will always be with us. You can prepare for all of the Sunday readings at liturgy.slu.edu.


Love and Truth

09-10-2023Pastoral ReflectionsColleen Jurkiewicz Dorman

I think even the most devout, the most pious Catholic reading this meditation could summon to mind, if asked, one or even two examples of Catholic teaching for which they have desperately looked for a loophole.

Don’t worry, I won’t make you share with the group. But bring it to your mind now: the doctrine you once resented, or perhaps still do. The commandment you don’t fully understand, the one you bristle against. The rule you find the hardest to follow. The belief you hate explaining to your friends. If it disappeared from scripture or dropped out of the catechism, would your life really be easier? Would you be happier?


Choosing the Cross

09-03-2023Pastoral ReflectionsColleen Jurkiewicz Dorman

I’ve been called a lot of things in my life, but I’ve never been called “Satan,” at least not to my face.

It seems to me the worst name you could call a person, and today we hear it straight from the lips of Jesus. It’s just one of the many small reminders strewn throughout Scripture that Jesus preaches meekness, but he is not mild — not when mildness serves no purpose, anyway.

And here, when Peter is trying to deter Jesus from making the right choice, mildness serves no purpose at all.


Next Week We Welcome Fr. JT Osunkwo, Visiting Missionary

08-27-2023Pastoral ReflectionsRev. Jude Thaddeus Osunkwo (JT)

I am Fr. Jude Thaddeus (JT) Osunkwo, a missionary priest with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston since 2010. I am visiting St. Mary’s Parish this weekend to speak at all Masses about the work of the Church in my home Diocese of Orlu in Nigeria.

Diocese of Orlu is quite a young Diocese of 43 years having been created on Nov. 29, 1980. Most of the parishes are in rural communities. The Diocese is blessed with a committed clergy and an enthusiastic laity. Being a young and rural diocese, it is faced with many challenges as would be expected. In addition to her main task of evangelization, the Diocese struggles with providing social amenities (education, health, clean water, etc.) to the predominantly poor rural communities. In Nigeria, government presence is scarce in the countryside. This puts the local church in the position to become "all things to all men and women."


Showing Mercy

08-20-2023Pastoral ReflectionsTracy Earl Welliver, MTS

Everyday Stewardship

The Jubilee Year of Mercy is now in the history books and looking back I wonder if I have been changed at all by the observance. Certainly the focus on mercy wasn't all about God's mercy toward me? Yes, I focused on my sin and the need for God's forgiveness and grace, but hopefully that changed how I live my life and how I offer mercy to others.


Happy Feast of St. Rocco

08-13-2023Pastoral Reflections

O Great St. Rocco, deliver us, we beseech you, from contagious diseases, and the contagion of sin. Obtain, for us, a purity of heart which will assist us to make good use of health, and to bear sufferings with patience. Teach us to follow your example in the practice of penance and charity, so that we may, one day enjoy the happiness of being with Christ, Our Savior, in Heaven. Amen.


Recognizing God In Your Ordinary Moments

08-06-2023Pastoral ReflectionsColleen Jurkiewicz Dorman

We’ve all had moments when we seem to get a glimpse of Heaven.

For me, they come with the sacraments: in the pew following my First Communion, kneeling before the bishop as he sealed my forehead with oil at my Confirmation, standing opposite my husband on our wedding day, cradling my newborns as the priest poured holy water over their little foreheads, claiming them for Christ. Moments when the veil between this world and the one to come is pulled away, and our hearts cry out: “Lord, it is good we are here.”


True Wisdom

07-30-2023Pastoral Reflections©LPi Father John Muir

Our culture seems more polarized and divided than ever. Into this wounded situation, our Catholic faith has a healing remedy to offer: the gift of wisdom. When the Lord offers to give King Solomon anything the monarch desires, he requests “an understanding heart” (1 Kings 3:9). In his polarized situation, the King doesn’t ask for power to defeat his enemies. He asks for a wise and understanding heart to judge right from wrong. This wisdom is elevated and fulfilled in Jesus who teaches us to bring forth “both the new and the old” (Matthew 13:52).


Patience is rooted in Hope

07-23-2023Pastoral Reflections©LPi — Father John Muir

Life, like the church, is often burdened with evil, smallness, and impurities. The Lord’s parables give us a hope-filled perspective on all three.

Evil: in Jesus’ parable about the good farmer whose enemy plants weeds at night, Jesus tells us that God is not the cause of evil but permits evil to exist with good out of his patient love. He will finally deal with it, but his love lets things stay messy for a time.


Accept Jesus

07-16-2023Pastoral Reflections ©LPi - Father John Muir

It’s not uncommon to hear people complain that we Catholics often fail in communicating our faith. Fair enough. We can and should improve there. But it’s interesting to notice that Jesus himself was implicitly accused by his disciples of a similar failure. This week in Matthew’s gospel they are perplexed that he speaks to the crowds in ambiguous parables. The Lord’s riddles leave many people more confused than before. He responds by pointing out that his parables have an intentional dual purpose: to hide (for some) and to reveal (for others) his Gospel: “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted” (Matthew 13:11). Is Jesus being unnecessarily difficult, obscurantist, or, worse, elitist?


Happy 12 Sunday in Ordinary Time

06-25-2023Pastoral ReflectionsFr. Bob Poitras

You are Invited to Fr. Bob’s Installation as Pastor of St. Mary Parish on Sat, Jun 24 at the 4:00pm Mass.

On Sat, Jun 24, at the 4:00pm Mass, Fr. Bob Poitras will be installed as the Pastor of St. Mary Parish by The Most Reverend Bishop Robert Reed. A reception in Sacred Heart Hall will follow the Installation Mass. All parishioners are invited to join in the celebration of the Mass and Reception and welcome Fr. Bob, officially, as our new Pastor. God Bless Fr. Bob!

Happy 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time

06-18-2023Pastoral ReflectionsRev. Robert A. Poitras

Time Flies When You’re Having Fun!

Hi Friends,

I can’t believe it’s already been two weeks since I arrived at St. Mary’s. Where does time go? I guess the old saying holds true, “Time flies when you’re having fun.” It has been a joy to settle in here at St. Mary Parish. On Fri, Jun 9, I had an opportunity to return to my last parish of St. Pius V and Holy Family Parish in Lynn, to celebrate the Baccalaureate Mass and commencement ceremony for the 8th Graders at St. Pius V School. I was bragging about St. Mary’s so much I think they couldn’t wait for me to leave! But truly, it has been a great start.


The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

06-11-2023Pastoral ReflectionsRev. Robert A. Poitras

Thank You for your warm welcome!

Dear Friends, it is an honor for me to be joining the great community of faith of St. Mary’s Parish in Franklin, MA. I want to first thank each of you for your very warm welcome. Your kind expressions by email, the warm greetings at our liturgies last week and weekend and the great signs of welcome posted all around the parish property. All of these expressions of welcome have made my transition as comfortable as possible. Thank You!