Happy Easter

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Holy Saturday: Easter Vigil rehearsal

My Holy Saturday always begins with coffee and bagels with the RCIA folks in the rectory basement, followed by a two-hour rehearsal in the church of the Vigil, led by Deacon Bill McNamara (my ordination classmate and my parish’s DRE) and Father Frank Passenant, our administrator.  Also on hand is David James the head of [Read More...]

Deacon, on a mission from God

The third Blues Brother has been discovered. Palm Sunday vigil Mass at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, Forest Hills, Queens. Photo by Rosalind Chan-Ganzhi [Read more...]

Queens street renamed for Pope John Paul II

From the In My Backyard Desk, via the New York Daily News: Years before he donned his papal robes, John Paul II spent time at a Maspeth church with ties to the Polish community. That visit to Holy Cross Church will be honored when 59th Road in Maspeth is co-named “Pope John Paul II Way..” [Read More...]

Can you spot the future deacon?

Someone posted this on Facebook this afternoon. Eighth grade at St. Peter’s Catholic School, Olney, Maryland—42 years ago. I’m the dork in the front in the gray jacket. [Read more...]

Holy Toledo

I spent part of last week in Ohio, and in four days visited three dioceses: Cleveland, Youngstown and Toledo. A highlight was having a chance to meet some of the deacons of Toledo, where I gave a talk to them and their wives about my own vocation and my career in the media. We all [Read More...]

Deacon Gary is back

Just returned from a trip to snowy Ohio. I’ll post more in the next day or so, but wanted to offer a glimpse of the parish where I led a Lenten retreat on Saturday: Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Aurora, in the Diocese of Youngstown. Two FOBs (Friends of the Bench) stopped by for [Read More...]

“Got the ashes. Now what?”

That’s the title of a one-day retreat I’ll be giving Saturday at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in Aurora, Ohio. If you’re in the neighborhood, stop by and say hello! Check out the parish web page for details. I’m looking forward to my visit—which begins with a stop in the Diocese of Toledo, to [Read More...]

The hunger game: the challenge of fasting during Lent

The good people at Legatus Magazine invited me to write a few words about fasting for Lent. Check ‘em out: I was doing perfectly fine, sitting at the diner, scanning the menu and steadfastly determined to have a tuna melt for lunch … until someone at the table next to me made a fateful decision. [Read More...]

The deacons got ashes

With Deacon Bill McNamara, my classmate and the DRE at my parish.   [Read more...]