1st Monday Mass for Life

L1210449The Catholic Prolife Vicariate of Rockland holds a mass for life on the first Monday of each month at St. Francis of Assisi Church at 128 Parrott Rd. in West Nyack at 7:30 p.m.  The next mass is July 7. Everyone is welcome to come to celebrate mass and pray for an end to abortion and all your prolife intentions.

Music for the mass will be provided by Frank D’Amato from Spring Valley. Frank helped lead the singing at the recent July 4 Mass for Life and for America at the Marian Shrine. He has volunteered to offer his musical talents (singing and guitar) to any group that is planning a prolife or prayer event. You can contact him at 845-507-2580.


Morning of Prayer on July 4th

On Independence Day, Catholic prolifers gathered for the annual morning of prayer for Life and for America at the Marian Shrine in Stony Point, sponsored by the Helpers of God’s Precious Infants and the Rockland County Catholic Coalition.


Mass concelebrants Fathers Joseph Kuzhichalil, Brendan Gormley, and Nicholas Callahan

The Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and the recitation of the Rosary was followed by Mass concelebrated by Father Brendan Gormley of St. Barnabas in the Bronx, Father Joseph Kuzhichalil of St. Margaret’s in Pearl River, and Father Nicholas Callahan, who is serving at St. Catherine’s in Blauvelt while on summer break from his studies of canon law in Rome.

Lector Richard Bruno

Lector Richard Bruno

In his homily, Father Brendan spoke of the importance of those most valuable things which do not belong solely to us and have been entrusted to us to hand down: the gifts of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

These treasures must be defended, often at great cost. Father read the “Letter to Jackie,” a letter from Navy Lt. Cmdr. John Shay to his 5-year-old son during the early days of World War II.


Father Joseph reading the Gospel.

Shay, knowing he may not live to see his son grow up, speaks to the child in a letter to tell him all the important things he wants him to know. He tells  the boy that he  lives in a land of great freedom and opportunity, that he should study hard and get all the education he can, play fair, try to win but be a good loser, never be a quitter, and follow the advice of those who love him because they’ll never let him down.

Shay tells his son to love and stay close to his mother and love his grandparents and aunts, and never forget his dad.

Sadly, Shay was killed in action shortly after writing his letter. But among the advice this brave man left was this, a message for all of us on Independence Day and always: Be a good Catholic  — and you can’t help being a good American.

The lector for the mass was Richard Bruno. The music was provided by Eileen Peterson, Monica Peterson-St. John, and Frank D’Amato.

Frank D'Amato, Monica Peterson St. John, and Eileen Peterson

Frank D’Amato, Monica Peterson St. John, and Eileen Peterson

Judy Murray, Jeanmarie Grahn, Terry Anselmi, Liz O'Brien, and Ginny Gulesian

Judy Murray, Jeanmarie Grahn, Terry Anselmi, Liz O’Brien, and Ginny Gulezian

Joe Clohosey and Tony Bosico

Joe Clohosey and Tony Bosico

The Giver of Life

Guest blogger Sean Miller

Guest blogger Sean Miller

A few familiar words from the Mass stop guest-blogger Sean Miller in his tracks and lead to a reflection on the power and love of the Holy Spirit  —  especially for those in crisis pregnancies.

The Giver of Life

As Christians, we say the Creed every Sunday, and midway through the prayer we acknowledge the Holy Spirit as the Lord, the “Giver of Life.”

When we recite familiar prayers, it’s easy to say them by rote without thinking. But the “Giver of Life”! These words can stop us in our tracks, when we realize what they really mean.

God is so generous that He allows us to partake in the process of creation. We become co-creators with the Lord, sharing in the dignity of creating our very own children.

As a couple unites, they share an expression of their love that may bring forth fruit, a beautiful baby. And this process of creation — with the power of  God — brings forth the creation of a soul, which is more precious to Him than all the stars of the universe. What an honor and what a deep responsibility!

This reality is often lost on modern man. And that perhaps is why he has also lost his reverence for life.

Life has become disposable. If somebody is inconvenient or looked on as a burden, then we take the liberty of simply discarding them. Is life so cheap? Can we just get rid of somebody because we don’t want to be bothered with their needs?

If so, what has become of us? For a country with some of the finest educational institutions in the world, it seems as if we’ve lost our minds collectively as a society. Have we become so smart that we’re stupid?

Well, maybe stupid is too harsh, but selfish seems to fit. We are the “me” generation, and we want what we want when we want it. And I think that mentality is what has led us so far from the human touch, the times when people seemed to genuinely care for one another.

What happened? Why is there such a deep hatred running through society? Perhaps we need to implore the Holy Spirit more fervently to replace the fire of hatred with the fire of His love — the true fire that will transform the entire world.

The Lord not only wants to give us life, but to give it to us abundantly. This requires trust, which can be scary at times.

But the Holy Spirit reminds us that the Lord will not give us more than we can handle, that he will strengthen us to do whatever He inspires us to do. We only need to call upon Him so that our despair can be turned to hope and our eyes will be opened to see the beauty of the gift of life.

For the Lord is the giver of all good things. Let us remind every woman who finds herself pregnant and discouraged that the Lord, the Giver of Life, will embrace her with His love and His promise to hold her and her precious little baby in the palm of His hand for all eternity.

For more blogs by Sean, just search for “Sean Miller” in the box in the upper right corner of the home page.




The Solution to Resolutions

It’s still not too late to make a New Year’s resolution!  Here guest blogger Sean Miller describes his plan for 2014 — and beyond.

The Solution to Resolutions

Guest blogger Sean Miller

Guest blogger Sean Miller

Many times when we’re really motivated to get something done we tend to overlook the very tools we need to accomplish our goal. And one of the most fundamental and obvious things that somehow gets lost in our enthusiasm is this: to remember to include God in our endeavors.

 I’ve made this mistake countless times — going forward with my own agenda without ever seeking direction from God. I felt that I had it all together, and perhaps I would talk to God about it at a later date … and that’s just what I end up doing, usually after things are falling apart in my hands.

 But in hindsight, it was clear that the heartache or difficulty I went through was caused by my own stubbornness. Eating “humble pie” is no fun, but the lesson surely leaves its mark on your soul. So I’ve resolved that from now on, instead of running off aimlessly with my own ideas, I’m going to include God before the adventure starts, so that it won’t turn out to be a disaster.

But how can I effectively do this on a daily basis? How can I make it work? Continue reading

National Prayer Vigil for Life — Dec. 8

imagesChurches across the nation will be joining in prayer for the sanctity of all human life during the National Night of Prayer for LIfe, Dec. 8-9.

The prayers seek to end abortion and all offenses against the dignity of the human person, to make reparation for these sins, and to help heal those who are suffering.

In Rockland services will be held at:

St. Francis of Assisi in West Nyack
Dec. 8, 9 p.m. until midnight, with closing mass at midnight

St. Gregory Barbarigo in Garnerville
Dec. 8-9, 9  p.m. to 1 a.m. in the Adoration chapel

The Wings to Fly

Sean Miller 2The Wings to Fly
By Guest Blogger Sean Miller

When the Catholic Church had an abundance of vocations it sent out missionaries throughout the world.

But the Church knew that prayer must come before action. So in her wisdom she arranged for religious orders that had a special charism for prayer — holy monks and nuns in the monasteries and cloisters — to pray earnestly for the the missions.

In this way, the souls of the people the missionaries would come in contact with would be well prepared to receive the graces God offers. This is similar to what happens in our own  lives when we seek out God‘s guidance through prayer, which will lead us to the action we need to take next.  Continue reading

Respect Life Month — Being Prolife

imagesThere’s no one season for being prolife. No one thing we do.

Rather, it’s a daily commitment that rises from our belief in the sacredness of life, the dignity of every human being. It leads us along a path of service toward others, especially the most vulnerable and those most in need. It causes us to become involved, to share, to pray, and to stand up and speak out when necessary.

Yet the month of October — Respect Life Month — is a special time to deepen our insight of what being prolife is all about. It’s highlighted by liturgies in our churches and observances in the public square. We gather in prayer services and protests, we join in discussions and song.

We’re drawn to events that bring us together because it’s with others that we find our strength. By sharing the sorrows, the uncertainties, the joys, and the exhilaration of the prolife mission we find the place where the courage comes from, and the hope, and the inspiration to keep on going in the year to come.

Will you join us? Here is a short list of some of the events going on in and around Rockland during Respect Life Month 2013. Please select one (or several) that seem right for you — and come! You’ll be glad you did!

More information about each event will be appearing on this site as we get closer to the date. So please check back. If your group or church is doing anything for Respect Life month, please let us know so we can post it on this site and pass the word along. Email: RocklandRTL@optonline.net.

National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children
Sept. 14 at 5 pm (before the 5:30 pm. Mass)
Garden of Innocence
South side of St. Mary of the Assumption Church
46 Conklin Ave., Haverstraw

40 Days for Life — Opening Ceremony
Sept. 25 at 3 pm
Perelman Drive, Spring Valley (on public property, near the Planned Parenthood office)

40 Days for Life 
Sept. 25 and daily for the next six weeks
9 am to 5 pm (and overnight at the Adoration Chapel of St. Gregory Barbarigo in Garnerville)
Perelman Drive, Spring Valley (on public property, near the Planned Parenthood office)

The Manhattan Declaration Returns Home
Sept. 25, 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Columbia University
525 W. 120th St., NYC
Join Timothy Cardinal Dolan for an interfaith prayer service and religious liberty forum

21st Rockland County Life Chain
Oct. 6, 2:00 to 3:30 pm
Intersection of Route 59 and Middletown Road, Nanuet

Good Counsel Communion Breakfast
Oct. 12 at 9:15 am (Mass followed by breakfast)
Marian Shrine, 147 Filor’s Lane, Stony Point
to benefit the Spring Valley Good Counsel home

New York State Right to Life Convention
Oct. 19
Holiday Inn in Oneonta, NY

Concert for Life
Nov. 21 at 7 pm (free, donation requested)
Albertus Magnus High School  [CORRECTION -- not the Marian Shrine this year]
to benefit the Spring Valley Good Counsel home

Praying for America — July 4

1 2 3 4 5 Bruno6 7By Eileen Peterson

The 237th  birthday of America began with exposition of the Most Blessed Sacrament by newly ordained hometown friend, Father Kenny Riello.

Father Kenny is such a blessing to the pro-life community and we are so grateful for his presence, especially in the sacrament of Confession.

Fifty plus people from all ethnic backgrounds and ages came to pray directly to Jesus for an America that is placed under God’s protection by obeying God’s Laws.

At 11:15 AM we began the Most Holy Rosary and there were about 100 people praying the Luminous Mysteries, the decades given by Blessed John Paul II to the Roman Catholic Church.

At 12 Noon, there were hundreds of people participating in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Our celebrants were Father Brendan Gormley and Father Kenny Riello (Father Nicholas Callahan was stuck in horrendous traffic but with us in prayer)

Father Brendan spoke of an America that is free and that freedom comes with choices and it is our Godly choices that truly set us free.

God is a loving and merciful God who can heal our America just as he healed the paralytic man in today’s Gospel:  Matthew 9:1-8

“When Jesus saw their faith he said to the paralytic, “Courage, child, your sins are forgiven.”

Special thanks to our lector:  Richard Bruno, founder of Our Lady of Guadalupe Rosarians.

Just before the final blessing, Father Brendan went before the statue of Mary Help of Christians and prayed the 5th Decade of the Glorious Mysteries of the Most Holy Rosary- Mary is Crowned Queen of Heaven and Earth!

To Jesus through Mary we beg our America to be a country that respects and obeys the Laws of God.

Special thanks to Peggy Beirne , Monica Peterson-St. John, and Maryann and Peter Partridge.

We in PRO-LIFE Rockland County are filled with thankful hearts.