This Week in Prayer, Service & Community - July 26, 2019


This Week – July 26, 2019

Dear All:

I hope you are enjoying summer’s last pure month. Our youth minister enjoyed some time with the youth group this past week and as a result the "This Week" is a few days delayed. Something about approaching August puts the scent of school in the air. Enjoy July as much as you can.


  • SUMMER CCD – Summer CCD is about prayer and much, much more. It is about all sorts of lessons and it is also about fun. Thanks to all the parents, teen volunteers, and teachers who are giving so generously of their time these days to help our young people learn to pray, serve and build community. It is terrifically refreshing to hear our youngsters’ prayers and to be a part of the special Priest-Prophet-King growth process. Thanks too to the many students who have dashed out of their way to engage me in great eye-contact, a firm handshake, and a self-assured declaration of “Hello, Father Hank my name is ---- and it nice to see you.” Remember, evangelization begins with good eye-contact and a firm handshake! Remember too that Summer CCD isn’t really over until you pass the handshake exam! PS – Check out the Gathering Space bulletin boards this week to see the students’ work. PPS – The Summer CCD families will gather at the 9:30 Mass this Sunday for their Young Ministers Liturgy.

  • FALL ADULT ED – Stay tuned for information about the new school year’s scripture studies, prayer camps and religious education for adults. We are currently finalizing the calendar and the curricula.

  • FALL CCD – Please note – next Wednesday, July 31, is the deadline for processing registrations for the fall CCD classes. Beginning August 1st we will start placing students and determining where we still need teachers. Any student registering after July 31 will be placed after the classes are set.

  • REMEMBERING OUR DECEASED LOVED ONES – Starting right after Labor Day, we will be gathering the names of your beloved deceased. For the last few years, the leaves on the trees (with the names of the deceased on the leaves) have been a great consolation for many parishioners. The challenge is that we are running out of tree space. The process will be very clear and a little more focused – and promises to be pretty impressive. Stay tuned.

  • 11:30 BRILLIANCE – If you are not a regular at the 11:30 Mass – this won’t make sense. If you do go to the 11:30 – did you ever think “Help” could be such a prayerful song? I’m still a little stuck on it.

Sunday's Homily

July 21, 2019 — Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Interior Freedom, Part IV: "The freedom to ask for help."

To listen to Sunday’s homily, click here.

To read a summary of it, go to the bottom of this page.


  • SUMMER SERVICE TRIPS – A big hearty welcome home to our 26 high-school students who returned Saturday from their service trip to Oil City PA. May God guide your reflections on the experience – and your recuperation from its great demands. As always – special thanks and blessings for the parents who support their children’s adventures and for the chaperones who give the incalculably valuable gift of a week of their time.


  • 2019-20 FELLOWSHIP EVENTS – Pardon me for even thinking about cool-weather and cold-weather events but the planning moves into overdrive next week. Please let me know if you would like to help plan or provide any of the major fellowship events. New ideas and new folk are always welcome.

  • SAGES EVENTS – If you are lucky enough to have been born before the first lunar landing, then you are also lucky enough to be eligible to participate in Sages Events.

    • Join us for an online seminar on DaVinci and Michelangelo next Tuesday at 2pm

    • Join the trip to Lancaster PA’s Sight and Sound Theatre on Wednesday, September 18th to see the JESUS show.

    • Check the Sages bulletin board in the gathering space for more information.

Your Pastor’s Brag


An upcoming special edition of The Pastor’s Brag – Somewhere around the Feast of Saint Peter Claver, there will be some special editions of The Pastor’s Brag – to report on the religious aspects of your summer travels – just bullet points really. Please let me know of churches you have visited or would recommend to people who will be traveling near them. Did you participate in a particularly uplifting Mass in Madagascar or maybe Manitoba? Please let me know of service projects you worked on this summer that maybe had nothing to do with St Joe’s. Did you build houses in Hackettstown or Ho-Ho-Kus? And what about great experiences of community in other churches? Did you have terrific church donuts in Denver or Dijon? Please let me know about how other parts of the world helped you to become a priest, prophet or king. (Please – just not too many tales about the Franciscans and their monopoly on Jersey’s barrier islands.)


Remember – you only have a month left. Chances are pretty good that it is a good idea for you to do something memorable and fun this summer.

Fr Hank