Cardinal O’Malley’s Statement
Regarding Supreme Court Ruling in Dobbs V. Jackson
For all of us who have spoken, written, worked, marched, and prayed to reverse Roe v. Wade, today’s Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson is deeply significant and encouraging. This decision will create the possibility of protecting human life from conception; it calls us to recognize the unique burden faced by women in pregnancy; and it challenges us as a nation to work together to build up more communities of support — and available access to them — for all women experiencing unplanned pregnancies.
During the past half-century, as the abortion debate continued, the Catholic Church has often been accused of imposing a religious belief on our pluralistic society. It is indeed the case that, when addressing the Catholic community, the Church has used both religious and moral arguments to oppose abortion. But when engaging the wider American civil society, elected officials, and our legal system, the Church has defended human life from its inception as a matter of human rights. Our continued efforts in advocating our position on the protection of unborn children is consistent with our advocacy for issues affecting the dignity of all persons at all stages and in all circumstances of life. The Church employs this principle of consistency in addressing issues of race, poverty, and human rights generally. It is a position that presents a moral argument as a foundation for law and policy to protect human life.
I welcome the Court’s decision, but I do not underestimate how profoundly divisive the issue of abortion has been and will continue to be in our public life. Even more tragic has been the personal suffering of women facing unplanned pregnancies in difficult situations. The Church has consistently opposed the moral and legal dimensions of Roe v. Wade; we also adamantly reject stigmatizing, criminalizing, judging or shaming women who have had abortions or are considering them. Too often isolated and desperate, women have felt they had no other choice. They need and deserve spiritual, emotional, and material support from the Church and from society.
In the Archdiocese of Boston, we have sought, through Project Rachel and Pregnancy Help, to support women facing a crisis pregnancy and women whose lives have been impacted by an abortion. In addition, the Church offers the Lord’s boundless mercy and healing to those suffering from the spiritual harms of abortion. In the face of recent statistics indicating an increase in abortions, our pastoral and social support for women will continue, will be welcoming, and will be available to all who need them.
Today’s Supreme Court decision begins a new chapter in our legislative and legal forums as the public debates about abortion will not end. Since 1973, there has been continuing opposition to Roe v. Wade’s reasoning and its consequences. Those consequences have permeated the political, legal, and social fabric of American life. The radical character of the Roe decision catalyzed some of the deepest reactions and responses to any issue in our nation’s history. The public arguments will now shift to the states, the Congress, and the courts. It is my hope that this new chapter may be a time of a different tone and focus in our civic life.
First, we must adopt a wider vision of the multiple threats to human life in our society today. The recognition that human life begins with conception and continues through natural death. All human life deserves moral and legal protection at all times. Protection of life should be comprehensive, not selective. The Church, in its own positions, should reflect this wider vision, and we are called to engage our civil society around this more holistic view of the value and dignity of human life. It is commonly recognized by those on both sides of the abortion debate that conditions of poverty and injustice have been and are today a major factor contributing to abortions. Those who have opposed and supported Roe can and should find common ground for a renewed commitment to social and economic justice in our country.
Second, protecting human life at all times can only succeed if we rediscover the value of civility in discourse, in protest, and in policy advocacy. Respect for life calls for mutual recognition of and respect for our common dignity as persons and citizens. In recent years, the idea of civility and respectful discourse has suffered from neglect, as has the respect for human life. The renewal of both is possible and urgently necessary.
As a bishop and a citizen, I hope and pray we can create a culture that protects the most vulnerable at the beginning of life and at any time life is threatened in any way.
(Posted Jun 29, 2022)
ALTAR FLOWER MEMORIALS
for 2022 Sunday Masses
Each weekend you have the opportunity to donate the weekend arrangement on the altar in memory of loved ones. The flower arrangement will be the one piece placed in front of the main altar.
The name of your loved one will be placed in the bulletin for that weekend. The parish makes arrangements for the flowers. The donation is $75.
Available weekends: July 31, September 4 & 25 and October 2.
Please call the parish office @ 781-438-0960 if you are interested in donating flowers for a particular weekend.
(Reposted Jun 15, 2022)
Prayer of Thanksgiving for Freedom
On this 4th of July, let us remember from whom all our freedoms originate, our good and gracious God.
Let us pray...
God, giver of all good gifts,
Help us to be thankful for rest and food,
and remember that, in all we do or say,
you are with us, here this day.
We are thankful for all you do
and for everything you have given us.
But above all we are thankful for our freedoms
and the ability to protect others' freedom.
We are free because of you.
We ask for your continued blessing on all your creation.
Through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
(Posted Jun 29, 2022)
Brown Scapular Enrollment
The Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel is a Heavenly Gift from Our Blessed Mother. You are invited to enroll in the Confraternity of the Brown Scapular or renew your devotion and obtain the Sabbatine Privilege, on Saturday July 16, 2022 at St. Joseph Church, 118 High Street, Medford. A Mass will be offered at 4:00 pm, with confession available starting at 3:00 pm. Enrollment will take place after Mass. A limited number of scapulars are available. To reserve one, please call 781-391-1396 or email [email protected]. Sponsored by the Legion of Mary, Our Lady of the Most Holy Eucharist Praesidium.
(Posted Jun 29, 2022)
Share Your Heart and a Little Time
Compassus Hospice is looking for people who wish to spend a little time each week with people in the final months of their lives. You can bring peace and joy to people with just your presence! Often volunteers spend time chatting, reading, taking a walk, listening to music, playing a game or just sharing quiet time together with their patient. Do you feel called to serve people in this manner? If so, please email Kim Iannacci at [email protected] or call (978) 273-7289 for more information.
Opportunities are available in the Stoneham, Medford, Wakefield, North Reading area and beyond. Training is provided. It could be one of the most rewarding ways you have ever volunteered your time!
(Posted Jun 22, 2022)
Evening of Healing & Intercessory Prayer
Evening of Healing
Wednesday, July 20th, 2022
at Saint Florence Parish, The Center for Healing
47 Butler Avenue, Wakefield, MA
Celebrant: Rev. Thomas Reilly
Healing Team: Rev. Thomas J. Reilly, Rev. Edward Riley, Rev. Jurgen Liias, Rev. Augustin Anda, Rev. Jay Woods, OFM
|6:00 pm||Adoration, Rosary & Confession (until 6:45 pm)|
Holy Mass with the Sacrament of the Sick
|8:15 pm||Adoration resumes with an opportunity for personal prayer|
Please email your intentions for healing to:
“Jesus healed the centurion’s servant from afar.” MT 8: 5-13
“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” HEB 13: 8
(Posted Jun 29, 2022)
In the Footsteps of Jesus
|For anyone interested in the Trip to the Holy Land, we invite you to attend an informational meeting on Wednesday, May 25th in the Parish Council Room immediately following the Vigil Mass for the Ascension of the Lord.|
(Updated May 18, 2022)
Saint Vincent de Paul Society Thank You
THANK YOU … THANK YOU … THANK YOU …
The Society of St. Vincent de Paul wishes to thank all of St. Patrick’s parishioners for their support and generous donations during the Lenten Season. Our parishioners donated over $900 in monetary donations to help those in need in our Stoneham community. Thank you for your donations and may God bless you all.
(Posted Jun 29, 2022)
July 3, 2022 ~ 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Freedom properly defined is freedom properly understood. The Cambridge Dictionary tells us that it is, “the condition or right of being able or allowed to do, say, think, etc., whatever you want to, without being controlled or limited.” That same dictionary defines liberty as, “the freedom to live, work, and travel as you want to.” Both definitions sound very similar. Is there a difference between freedom and liberty? Many are accustomed to believing that freedom and liberty are interchangeable and simply involve possessing rights and privileges. For the Christian, however, there is a big difference between the two.
St. John Chrysostom directs that “the only person who is free is the one who lives for Christ.” There are many other inspirational people throughout history who see freedom as something far greater than liberty. True and properly understood freedom has little to do with entitlement or self-promotion. For the believer, it is a matter of the heart and soul. Freedom (and liberty, for that matter), seen only in terms of the world, can quickly be taken away. The freedom spoken of by St. John Chrysostom can only be lost by personal choice. When one lives for Christ, they live in pursuit of virtues that enlighten one’s soul (faith, hope, and love) and strengthen one’s character (justice, fortitude, temperance, and prudence). Rather than having the ability to acquire or do more things, true freedom asks us to be detached. Privileges, rights, and responsibilities are important, but they do not define us.
The world is not always open to listening to the truth. “I am sending you like lambs among wolves,” Jesus tells his disciples. The secular definitions of freedom and liberty are very attractive. They promise us a great deal. It is no wonder Jesus asks his disciples to travel with very little. The Gospel is not dependent upon things or anything those with worldly power or investment can say or do. When one chooses to live for Christ, they choose to live with peace. That’s what true freedom will give us. If we do not want what Christ offers, we can close the door, and the messenger will walk away. Distracted by the lure of personal liberties, we risk losing our freedom. We will not have anything truly life-giving to share with others.
(Posted Jun 29, 2022)
Why is it so important that we register in a parish? Isn't it good enough that we go to Mass?
Registration is the official way we join a parish community. Many people think that because they attend a particular parish they automatically belong. At times, young adults who have moved away for years think they are still signed up under their parents. But membership requires signing up, formally enrolling yourself in a parish. Registration is a commitment to a community, a way to be included in the religious, social, and ministerial activities of your parish. Your registration affects the parish in many ways. Census numbers can determine how many priests are assigned to a church, what benefits and obligations the community has to the diocese, and how Masses, Confessions, and devotions are planned and scheduled.
Registration shows you belong. It is also necessary for certain benefits, like scheduling sacraments, obtaining sponsor certificates, and getting donation statements for taxes. Most importantly, it lets the parish count on you, to call on you to assist in its mission. Registering in your parish is a statement of faith and confidence in the life and work of your parish.
Please print out and drop into collection or mail to Parish office at 71 Central Street, Stoneham, MA 02180.
(Updated Jun 29, 2022)
Retrouvaille 2022 Sessions
Need Marriage Help? - Retrouvaille (pronounced retro-vi) helps Christian couples through difficult times in their marriages. Catholic in origin, the program is designed to provide the tools to help couples get their marriages back on track, giving them the opportunity to rediscover one another and examine their lives together in a new and positive way. For information on upcoming weekends in 2022 please visit www.HelpOurMarriage.org or call us at 508-271-7155.
AUGUST 12-14, 2022
(Updated Jun 29, 2022)
Saint Vincent de Paul
The Saint Vincent DePaul Society provides material assistance to those in need who live in our Stoneham community. If you need help, or if you know of anyone who lives in Stoneham that needs help with food, clothing, rent, fuel oil or essential utility bills, please contact the St Patrick Parish office at 781-438-0960 If you wish to contribute, donation boxes for St. Vincent de Paul Society are located on either side of the center aisle doors exiting the church. They are also located in the lower church at the doors. Your help will be a blessing for the less fortunate. God bless you!
(Posted Jun 29, 2022)
Grow+Go ~ Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
| July 3, 2022 | Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Is 66:10-14c | Gal 6:14-18 | Lk 10:1-12, 17-20
GROW - AS A DISCIPLE | PRAY, STUDY, ENGAGE, SERVE
So what comes to mind when you imagine your dream road trip? A well-planned route with scenic stops, nice hotels, good restaurants and quirky sights along the way? Jesus may be my copilot, but given his words in today’s Gospel I’m not sure I’d want him to be my travel agent! As he sends the 72 ahead of him, he gives them no illusions about the mission that lies ahead: “Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves. Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals.” Settle for the first house that welcomes you, regardless of the amenities. Eat and drink whatever they offer. Give those you encounter a greeting of peace and remind them the kingdom of God is at hand. As always, Jesus gives these travelers all they will need to share the Good News with others. They return rejoicing! The early disciples refute my “travel agent” doubts, as they show us by example to place our trust in God and take nothing for the journey except our faith and the guidance of the Holy Spirit. In doing so, we can rest assured that our “names are written in heaven.”
GO - EVANGELIZE | PRAYER, INVITATION, WITNESS, ACCOMPANIMENT
I’m a planner. When we went to Disney World, my sons split off from me after I unveiled an app that would show us exactly which ride or attraction to hit based on crowd numbers, time of day and other variables. I loved that app! So had I been one of the 72 we read about today appointed by Jesus to spread the Gospel in pairs, hopefully my companion would not have abandoned me because of my insistence on planning. Ultimately, our journey of faith – as we share it with others and walk toward the kingdom ourselves – is not something we can choreograph. The more we plan and the more baggage we carry, the less likely we are to hear God’s voice cutting through the noise. By stripping away the nonessentials, we can place our trust in the Lord, who will show us the right path. When we place our lives in the service of the Lord, the harvest will be abundant.
Many U.S. dioceses will be welcoming newly ordained priests this month. Pray for them as they begin their ministry, and pray for more vocations.