A Warm Welcome

06-10-2021Letters From Fr. BrianRev. Brian F. Manning

Dear Parishioners and Friends of Saint Mary’s,

Father Frank moved in last week and celebrated the 4 PM Mass on Saturday. It was a touching “homecoming” to Saint Mary’s for him. I appreciate the many folks who changed their weekend plans to come to the 4 PM Mass to say a personal “welcome” to him.

We are keeping close tally of the number of parishioners who attend Mass each weekend to help us to decide what and how many Masses we should have. This past weekend we increased by approximately 30 people so we are getting closer to 450. We will be, God willing, slowly and consistently increasing in attendance all through the summer and fall. I am a great believer in slow and steady is the best way to go. For you information, our upper church holds approximately 850 people. We are printing music programs on paper for the 4 PM and the 10:30 AM Masses for the summer. The cost of Missalettes would be approximately $9,000.00 and we would be using them minimally for 5 months. We also possess the Annual Music License which is required to print music at a cost of almost $2000.00. So the music program which you are welcome to take as you enter church is a “one time use only” and we ask that you take it with you when you leave. We also possess the Annual License for Live-Streaming music which also is almost $1800.00. We observe and possess all the copyrights needed as a “workman is worth his wage” as my father used to tell me when I was young. Sadly, the materials for church are always very expensive as it is a small market and very few suppliers or sources.

The Cardinal has announced that as of the weekend of June 19-20, 2021… a week from this weekend, he is lifting the dispensation from the Sunday and Holy Day Mass obligation. He says that “this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have been recently exposed to COVID or any other communicable illness; those who are confined to their homes or to hospital or other facilities due to illness, infirmity, frailty or age; and those not yet vaccinated, due to age or any health consideration.” We should also include those who still find it difficult to be in indoor spaces with lots of other people, some of whom are unvaccinated and unmasked and also unvaccinated and masked. Some people do not worry for themselves, but for a family member(s) at home or for their children. Anyone who has reasonably thought out if they should attend Mass and answers “no”, this person and/or family is excused from the obligation. Thoughtful decision making which leads to a negative decision excuses anyone from the Mass obligation.  

I want to thank those of you who have given to Cardinal Sean’s Archdiocesan Appeal. This Annual Appeal is necessary for the success of his work and ministry and that of the almost 50 ministries and services of the Archdiocese. We have now reached the pledge of $55,601.00 of the $65,346.00 assessment. I invite those who have not given to this please consider doing so this coming week. You can access all this from our Parish website (stmarysfranklin.org). Your faithful financial support to our Parish and to the Saint Vincent’s is greatly appreciated. The Saint Vincent’s has been closely involved in assisting the many and various families who were impacted by the fire two weeks ago.

Some of the staff have begun to take some of their summer vacation time so that the Parish Office hours may be a little erratic for the summer weeks. They have told me that often the best way to communicate is by email. You can obtain anyone’s email address from our website: stmarysfranklin.org  In fact, our website is the very best way to obtain any information or details you need to know about Masses, Services, records, programs, etc. Times has certainly changed and web based information is so very helpful and is the way to go almost all of the time. I use our own and other parish website all the time and also usually use the emails that the sites provide. We also have a Face Book page which carries lots of the up-to-date and “at the moment” information. By the way, most folks no longer answer their phones, including their cell phones. I usually got to leave a message and they leave me a message and it goes back and forth for a while. Emails seems to sort it out sooner.

Well, enjoy the wonderful days of summer. It is upon us and we should not waste any opportunity to gather with family or friends.

God bless,

Father Brian