Thursday, June 18, 2015

Brave and Enlightened Pope Francis and the Climate Change Encyclical

"Praise Be To You"- ("Laudato Si") the environmental encyclical,  is a brave and courageous undertaking by Pope Francis to wake up the world to the dangers of climate change and global warming. Alleluia-Praise be to God for this encyclical by Pope Francis. There must be rejoicing in Heaven and St. Francis of Assisi must be leading the joyful celebration!
I quote from the New York Times, "The vision that Francis outlined in a 184 page papal encyclical is sweeping in ambition and scope: He described relentless exploitation and destruction of the environment and said apathy, the reckless pursuit of profits,  excessive faith in technology and shortsightedness was to blame." He said, the world's poorest people are being "dislocated and disregarded." Very sad.
All I can say and write is "Wow!" That took guts to write that. I was never more proud to be Catholic.
Interestingly, though poor people will suffer tremendously from the effects of global warming and climate change, even rich people will be affected. For instance, Los Angeles, California has some very expensive real estate and some very wealthy people live there and they are already feeling the effects of global warming, as California is having a drought of historic proportions. And that drought could get worse. Many climate scientists believe that global warming will cause some parts of the Earth to experience extreme droughts while other parts will have stormy weather with frequent downpours. We see that happening already. So the poor and the rich will be affected but everyone else as well. California produces much of the fruits and vegetables in our country and we will soon see rising food prices, if the drought doesn't end soon.
I haven't read the encyclical yet but I will. But I am very happy that the Pope is trying to wake people up, especially people who have the power to change things, before it's too late. One of my fears is that it is already too late and we just don't know it yet.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Msgr. McCann's 50th Anniversary of Priesthood and Retirement from St. Mary's Parish-Manhasset

Msgr. John McCann, the pastor of St. Mary's in Manhasset, Long Island is retiring as well as celebrating 50 fruitful years of priesthood. The parish had two celebrations and a beautiful Mass to honor their pastor. On Friday evening May 29th a party was held at North Hills Country Club which was very special. As Msgr. wrote in the bulletin afterwards, "It was an evening I will always remember." Msgr. James McDonald, pastor of St. Aidan's in Williston Park, who was at the party along with many other priests, remarked that he had never seen a retirement party quite like it. It was rather grand. I was fortunate enough to be there as well.
At a Mass in his honor last Sunday he asked Fr. Nick Zientarski (Dean of Seminarians at St. Joseph's Seminary in Yonkers, who celebrates weekend Masses at St. Mary's) to preach. Fr. Nick gave an extraordinary homily. Preaching on the Feast of the Most Holy Trinity, he spoke about communion, the importance of communion in the Blessed Trinity and Msgr. McCann's ability to create a communion in the parish. It was a dynamic homily, obviously very well thought out.  It was so good that Msgr. said after the homily he was going to hire Fr. Nick, ahead of time,  to preach at his funeral Mass. Quite funny! But yes, the homily was that good. I told Fr. Nick afterwards that since there were two Bishops in attendance at the Mass (and he knew that ahead of time), he will probably be made a Bishop someday because of that homily! (Bishop William Murphy of Rockville Centre as well as Bishop Robert Coyle -Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese for the Military Services concelebrated as well as many other priests. )
Here are some pictures from the Procession at the beginning of Mass. After the Mass, there was another celebration in a large tent on the premises, which was very well attended.