Christ The King Parish

The Pastor’s Pen


October 20, 2019, Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Correcting an Omission: An incomplete listing of the team who coordinated the CTK Golf Classic appeared in the bulletin last week in that the name of Jeanne Dennis was omitted. So again, many thanks to Joe Mooney , Deacon Frank Fantasia, Debbie Journalist, Terry Daly and Jeanne Dennis for the hard work that has led to another successful golf tournament and the raising of $60,000 which is a significant amount of money to fund the charitable works of the parish carried out by the CTK Conference of St. Vincent de Paul and our local council of the Knights of Columbus.

Goodbye Columbus (Day)?: Reflecting on this recent holiday , one is left to wonder about its future fate. From childhood days it is easy to recall singing “In fourteen hundred and ninety two Columbus sailed the ocean blue” and celebrating the ” founding ” of America by Christopher Columbus from Genoa Italy whose exploration was commissioned by the Catholic Monarchs of Spain. As time went on the narrative changed as the truth was finally told that America was founded long before 1492 and thus there were many people e living here already when Columbus unintentionally arrived in his search for other destinations. Indeed as might be expected the immigration of Europeans to the Americas after the “discovery” by Columbus , in particular the Spanish to what we commonly refer to as Latin America, brought with it a clash of cultures and consequent abuses and violence which sadly led to the loss of lives of both indigenous people and new comers as well. Yet almost simultaneously with Spanish efforts at colonizing there occurred the bitter fracture of the unity of Western Christianity with the Protestant Reformation and the rivalry of European powers to lay claim to, and colonize what was to their perspective “the New World”. Thus we can trace the roots of a persistent “black legend” as the English and Dutch in particular as rivals of the Spanish for territory in the Americas set out to demonize them by characterizing them merely as ruthless, brutal, gold seekers who were also forcing the indigenous peoples to convert to their “false religion” at the point of the sword. Conveniently it was easy to spread these exaggerations because the printing press had recently been invented paralleling the spread of fake news in our own day made possible by the coming of social media on the internet. Because the indigenous peoples of the Americas had no written language at that time unfortunately we don’t have complete access to their side of the story, but as a largely conquered people we rightly understand that it was not an acceptable, just or situation for them. Yet while the English and the Dutch were just as capable of excesses as the Spanish in their colonizing activities , that is largely overlooked as is the truth that as early as 1512 Spain was the first and only colonial power in recorded history to pass laws for the protection of indigenous peoples. Indeed, in spite of the unacceptable motives and actions of some of the conquistadors the Spanish mind and heart was fundamentally Catholic and so unsurprisingly theses laws called for humanitarian treatment of the indigenous people. Yet that is perhaps why the black legend kept getting perpetuated in spite of this truth because of the anti-Catholic sentiment of the English and the Dutch. Fast Forward to the 19th Century in the United Sates and we see the early opposition to Columbus Day coming from nativist “Know Nothing” Party members who saw the celebration as inappropriately championing the unwelcome arrival of Catholics from Italy and Ireland to a Protestant country and so they wished to stamp it out. What we as Catholics must never regret is the coming of the gospel to the Americas which began with the arrival of Columbus. Perhaps as we go forward the reconciliation in Christ that is promoted by the gospel would call us to do as many of the countries of Latin America have already done which is to celebrate this day neither exclusively as Columbus Day nor indigenous People’s Day but rather as the “Day of Encounter” Such a celebration acknowledges the truth that in spite of some of the troublesome aspects at the beginning we are in the long run better off that the Indigenous and European cultures have met and mixed for we have much to continue learning from one another and ultimately we will be blessed in the process of doing so.

October 13, 2019, Twenty-eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time


GOLF TOURNAMENT: Great Gratitude is due to all who participated in the Golf Tournament, and to those who generously sponsored it, and especially to the great team who organized it, headed by Joe Mooney and assisted by Marion Mooney, Deacon Frank Fantasia, Terry Daly, and Debbie Journalist. The Tournament presented a check for $60,000 to be placed in the Matthew 25 Fund to support the ongoing work of St. Vincent de Paul with the Food Pantry and the Needy, and the charitable works organized and carried out by our Knights of Columbus. Other than Holy Day Collections, the Thrift Shop proceeds and contributions to the poor box, this annual tournament is the major fundraiser for the charitable good works carried out in the name of all of us in Christ the King Parish. Let us ask God’s blessings upon all who made the tournament such a success again this year. Let us mark our calendars for next year’s CTK Golf Classic to be held at Willowbend Country Club on September 14th and plan to assist the Committee’s continued success by planning now to participate, sponsor and otherwise support it for the greater good of those in our local community who are in need.

ST. VINCENT DE PAUL WALK FOR OUR NEIGHBORS IN NEED: Thank you to all who helped organize and staff the walk and all walkers and especially the many generous sponsors. As a chill sets in the air on these Fall nights, we become ever more aware of how some here on Cape Cod have sleepless nights wondering how they are going to keep a roof over their heads as Winter arrives, and others who are already sleeping in cars, or in shelters or outside as they have lost their homes. As your pastor, I am very grateful to those who so generously sponsored me on the day of the walk (which I did complete putting in at least an hour and 15 minutes non-stop). I was sponsored at a lever of $4,600. Thanks also to all who answered my request for help last at the Masses last weekend to bring that total to $5,000. I am happy to say that the goal has been reached and when all is finally tallied will certainly exceed that amount.

CALLED BY NAME: NAME TAG SUNDAY: Next weekend, we will invite all who come to Mass to print their preferred first name, whether their proper name or nickname and a stick-on name tag and to wear it throughout Mass until after you exit the doors. We are called by name by God and we ought to try to call one another by name, but even when we have already been introduced we can easily forget and might be a bit shy to ask someone their name again. This is a simple effort to reduce the amount of anonymity that exists in any large gathering of people but which is not helpful when the people of God must form a community of faith together. Thank you in advance for your willingness to cooperate in this community building exercise which will be repeated at least once more in the late Spring before the influx of summer visitors.

FORMED IN FAITH: THE GOSPEL OF JOHN: SUNDAYS AT 11:30 AM IN ST. JUDE CHAPEL AND AT 6:30 PM IN CLASSROOM A: This gospel is our present focus in our ongoing efforts to provide opportunities for life-long faith formation particularly on the Scriptures which Catholics have often not studied in any depth. Only one session has been held so far and the classes are open to any who would like to attend at any time. The Class will not meet on this Holiday Weekend but will resume next Sunday, October 20th. In the meantime, all are asked to read the prologue and the “Book of Signs” in preparation for upcoming classes.

RCIA – Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults is a program at our parish that welcomes adults who wish to be fully initiated into the Catholic Church through the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and the Eucharist. Please contact Tony Agostinelli, the program coordinator, if you wish to have further information on this program . . . 508-685-1545.

October 6, 2019, Twenty-seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

“Laudate Si ” – An appropriate teaching for the Feast of St. Francis during  Pro-Life Month:  As  on October 4th we remember St. Francis and  observe the entire month as one in which to reflect upon and  promote the sanctity of life, it may be helpful to visit or revisit the letter of Pope Francis which was published in June of 2015.   Entitled “Laudate Si”  or as translated from the original Umbrian dialect “Praise to You” is recognized as the opening line of the Canticle of  All Creation composed by St Francis himself in the 12th Century.  The Pope quotes his saintly namesake because in the Canticle  St Francis called the sun “brother”, the moon “sister” and the earth “mother” as he recognizes a kinship between all that has come forth from God as Creator.  It is a new appreciation of such interrelatedness of all God’s creation that the Pope sees as basic to resolve the multitude of problems that have been created over the past two hundred years as an ever-developing world has become indifferent to the destruction wrought to our planet in the pursuit of economic gains.   The Encyclical, while praised or dismissed on the basis that it is perceived to be about climate change which some would say a Pope has no credentials on which to speak, is much broader really and thoroughly prolife.   The Pope’s overall message is that climate change is just one of many symptoms of the greater problem which is that many people no longer acknowledge God as the Creator and this has made way for an increasing disrespect for the sacredness of all creation.   If creation isn’t seen as God’s then this can foster an inappropriate and arbitrary human dominion over the earth and all other living things, especially the most vulnerable.  It also encourages a” throwaway culture”  which treats unwanted things as waste including unwanted people such as the unborn, the elderly or the handicapped.     While the Pope praises some aspects of the environmental movement he is not blind to its shortcomings and says that we can’t be genuinely concerned about the protection endangered species if we are not also concerned to protect human embryos as such is morally inconsistent if all of creation is in truth interrelated.    So as we observe this month of  October as pro-life month let us join our Holy Father Francis in appreciating the truth contained in  St. Francis’s  famous poem , recognizing that God made all living things and the environment in which they are intended to live and thrive, so we must do what we can to respect, protect, and defend all  creation as brother, sister, and mother to us.

September 22, 2019, Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

STEWARDSHIP- Caring for our Community of Faith.

Annual Report: As we begin to prepare a report of our finances for the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2019, which will be included as part of the annual report to be released on the Feast of Christ the King, while it does not appear to be all good news as expenses continue to outpace resources, still the generosity of the parishioners of the parish and our visitors is very evident in an increase in the donations in the weekly collection plate of just over $34,500. It is also noted the largest increase was in contributions to the Second Collection, designated for building maintenance and thus not subject to the Diocesan Assessment Tax of 13%. Gratitude is due to all who so generously dig a little deeper to support our beautiful but costly to maintain parish campus.

Reducing Costs: Perhaps due to obtaining a better rate our costs for electricity went down over $10,000 in the last fiscal year but an annual cost of $56,181.00 is still quite steep! So to address this challenge Cape Light Compact was invited to do an assessment of our energy use throughout the parish complex inside and out and as a result, recommended a change to LED bulbs throughout the facility and in the exterior lighting as well. Rise Engineering has recently been completing the necessary changes to fixtures and installing the LEDs over the past couple of weeks, itself a project worth $44,000 but given to us at a cost of only $4000.00. This changeover, somewhat noticeable in the increased brightness of our chandeliers, should begin to make a significant reduction in our costs for electricity during this present fiscal year.

Annual Collection: As of September 10th, 244 Households had contributed $91,933 to the WE ARE FAMILY annual campaign. This represents a very generous average per household contribution of $376. The funds from the annual collection are placed in a special Buildings and Grounds Account separate from the account that funds our normal operations thus sequestering these funds for more major capital expenses, such as the repaving of our parking lots and the replacements of a boiler last year. As reported, last year’s annual campaign was short $150,00 of the combined costs of those major projects so we had to dip into funds on deposit with the Diocese. It the desire of our Finance Council and Business manager to begin replacing those funds while keeping others on hand for the unexpected, like the recent failure of two air conditioning compressors, and the eventual replacement of the roof. While few get excited about “lights, locks, leaks and Loans” still these must be attended to on a regular and ever more costly basis. In fact, besides some major landscaping revision that is overdue in the front of the church which will require the use of these funds, we are also changing locks and installing cameras to provide better security for all of us but especially the young people who come to our complex for their religious formation. So our hope must be that as our WE ARE FAMILY annual campaign continues through the Fall, that the remaining households of our parish who are in a position to do so will also make a generous donation and those not in a position to do so, will join in praying for the success of the campaign.

CHARITY – Caring for our neighbors in need

MATTHEW 25: This is the special fund which provides for the expenses of the St. Vincent De Paul Society in managing and operating the Food Pantry and in meeting the legitimate requests of the needy for assistance with housing, utilities, and transportation, as well as with some of the charitable works of our Knights of Columbus . The activity of the account in the month of August was as follows:

Balance July 31st: $15,016.00
Contributions 8/1-8/31 $7867.00
Expenses for Food
Pantry and Needy $5,879
Balance on August 31st: $17,003

Thank you to the Thrift Shop volunteers, donors and shoppers and all who us the envelopes provided or the poor boxes at the entrances to the Church to contribute to this fund to help the poor in our community!

WALK – OCTOBER 5th: Please join our local Conference of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in raising money to put the homeless in homes or to prevent those in danger of losing their homes to keep a roof over their heads. Homelessness and the risk of it is a hidden but serious problem on Cape Cod. So please walk or sponsor a walker for this fundraising event; forms are available at the entrances to the church. If you can’t participate or don’t know anyone who is, then Fr. Healey would be happy to accept your sponsorship which may be pledged by signing his form found on the clipboard at the church entrances or going online to the GO FUND ME page set up for this purpose.

September 15, 2019, Twenty-fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

through faithful WORSHIP, unwavering WITNESS, and charitable WORKS

WORSHIP: To be an authentic Christian community then all that we do must begin in prayer. The greatest prayer is the one we offer communally, which is the Eucharist that Christ himself commanded us to celebrate in his memory. It is the celebration of Word and Sacrament that we are called to pray each Sunday which the Second Vatican Council defines as the summit and the font of all authentic Christian life. Recently at a meeting of those who serve in various ministries in the celebration of the Eucharist here in our parish, the idea was discussed and well-received of having a “NAME TAG SUNDAY” in the near future and then periodically thereafter. The purpose would be to try to reduce any anonymity that sadly still exists to some extent among us who are called not only to be individual believers but especially to be a true community of faith. Christ calls each of us by name and we should strive to do the same whenever we gather to pray the Eucharist. So when we launch “Name Tag Sunday” we ask the cooperation of all in filling out a tag in which your first name will be written legibly and large enough to be seen by those around you who will offer you the sign of peace by name and the ministers of the Holy Communion who will call you by name as they present the Body of Christ to you. Stay tuned for further information as to the dates that this will be done in the near future!

WITNESS: Those who worship are sent out to bear witness to Christ and his gospel in order to cooperate with Him in his mission to transform the ways of this world into the ways of God’s Kingdom. This transformation entails many things because the gospel is transmitted to others in both word and deed. Yet in the end witnessing especially entails revealing one’s faith through preaching, teaching, and faith sharing in order to spark, support or strengthen faith in others. Certainly, as we observe CATECHETICAL SUNDAY today we are reminded that witnessing is the responsibility of all of us but there are those among us who generously step forward to take on an important aspect of this task for the whole community of faith by committing themselves to catechize the young people of our parish. So today we pray for Mrs. Laird and all who volunteer to assist her in organizing and carrying out the programs by which the younger members of our parish will be further formed in the Christian faith. Let us be mindful of these dedicated catechists not only this weekend but throughout the year from September to May as they carry out this essential ministry in our parish. Let us also be generous to the second collection to ensure that the catechists will have the resources necessary to conduct their ministry.

WORKS: Charitable works are an essential way in which we “walk our talk” and validate our claim to be disciples of Jesus Christ. On last Monday evening at the banquet which concluded the annual CTK Classic Golf Tournament, the Boston Food Bank was recognized and thanked for its cooperation in providing food for distribution to those in need in our local community through the efforts of our weekly food pantry over the course of the past 30 years. Statistics recently gathered from the records of the St. Vincent de Paul Society who organize and manage the weekly pantry are quite impressive revealing that over the course of one year alone 105 tons of food is distributed in 32,261 grocery bags as on average 150 households per week seek our assistance to put food on their tables! This good work is carried out by Vincentians and other parishioners who generously contribute over 10,000 hours of volunteer service. We thank all who make this good work possible by volunteering or by helping to raise the funds that support this charitable work through the annual golf tournament and by contributions throughout the year to Matthew 25 Fund. This fund which is an umbrella fund that supports the good works of the parish especially those carried out by the Society of St. Vincent de Paul and the Knights of Columbus ever reminds us by its title that such good works are an essential way in which we all must put that most important chapter of gospel into practice.

WALK OR SPONSOR SOMEONE TO DO SO: On October 5th the St. Vincent de Paul Conference of Christ the King Parish will conduct a walk here on our parish campus to raise funds to resolve or help prevent homelessness right here on Cape Cod. This is a largely unseen but very real problem here on the Cape especially from October to May and to address it properly requires funds to help pay rents and mortgages as well as first, last and security deposits to place families in housing. Fr. Healey will be walking and if you do not know anyone else who is and can’t do so yourself he would welcome your sponsorship. You may make your pledge by signing his form available on the clipboards found at both main entrances to the church.

September 8, 2019, Twenty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Summer of 2019 – Raffle Winners:
$5000 – Grace Talmage ~ $2500 – Richard Hoffman ~ $1000 – M/M John Buckley ~ $500 – John Tuttle and Alice Gramson ~ $250 – S. Gaucher, Bruce Brown, Diane Kraihanzel, Linda Sullivan ~ $100 – Lorraine Barry, Emily Winig, Cynthia O’Connor, Keith Bombaugh, Ellen Hulett

Many Thanks to all who participated!

The Month of Mary, August 15th to September 15th: Perhaps because of Mother’s Day falling within it, the month of May tends to be the month of the Blessed Virgin Mary in popular piety, however, that often causes a bit of a conflict when the Season of Easter has not yet concluded. In the liturgical calendar which organizes the year with its religious feasts and seasons, we can readily identify August 15th to September 15th as the Month of Mary because it is delineated by the “bookend feasts” of Mary. Thus this month of Mary opens on the 15th of August with The Assumption of Mary and one week later on the 22nd we celebrate the Queenship of Mary. Now as the month moves toward its conclusion we observe the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary today on September 8th and one week from now will close the month on the 15th of September with the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows.

Dedication of the New Crucifix in the St. Jude Chapel: On Friday evening the Crucifix designed and created by the Demetz Studio of Northern Italy which has been installed in the reredos of the St. Jude Chapel since March was formally blessed and dedicated in memory of Ronald R. Reuss as a gift from his wife Rita; we are grateful to Mrs. Reuss for her generous memorial donation of $10,000. The interior of the St. Jude Chapel was completely repainted last year and so were its sanctuary furnishings. A dedicated space for the music ministry in the Chapel has been created and two new cantor stands have been acquired for use there along with a new audio system. Going forward we must now create a space to properly accommodate the original baptismal font from the church in the Chapel and provide an adequate area in which to celebrate those initiation rites there. Ultimately we must also refinish the pews and the kneelers and acquire new pew cushions. When the pews are removed for renovation we should also replace the carpeting which while wearing well for 30 years has become faded and badly water stained in some places. The goal is not to change the appearance of this historic chapel in any significant way but to maintain its beauty and increase its functionality as a place not only dear to the original parishioners who worshipped there when it stood on Route 28 in Cotuit, but also to make it an appropriate space for present-day celebrations of smaller weddings, funerals and baptisms. The remainder of the work requires to update the should be able to be accomplished for approximately $65,000. If parishioners are especially generous to the WE ARE FAMILY CAMPAIGN this year then some of the proceeds from that collection will be used to continue making progress on this renovation work; any special donations particularly designated the improvement of the St. Jude Chapel would also be most welcome and these could also be acknowledged as memorials.

Please Walk or Sponsor a Walker: On Saturday, October 5th, The Christ the King Conference of St. Vincent de Paul will host a special walk here on our parish campus to raise funds to address homelessness on Cape Cod. The homeless and people at risk for it because they cannot fully afford rent or mortgage payments often turn to the church for assistance. Please consider helping to raise the funds to help address this challenging situation by walking or sponsoring someone who is willing to do so. Sponsor sheets are available at the entrances to the Church. Fr. Healey is also seeking sponsors to help motivate his participation.

“To learn the Heart of God, learn the Word of God” (- Pope St. Gregory the Great -6th Century): Plan now to better understand the Word and Heart of God as the Gospel of St. John becomes the subject of Adult Bible Study this Fall. Meetings will be held beginning on October 6th on Sunday mornings from 10:30 to 11:30 (after the 10:30 Mass) or from 6:30 to 7:30 PM (after the 5:30 PM Mass) on Sunday evenings.