Notes from Fr. Tim

May 26, 2024

Dear Parishioners,

Memorial Day, which marks the unofficial beginning of summer, is a day for parades, memorial services, picnics, and barbeques. “Taps” are played at memorial services and at graveside services. This custom is honored throughout the United States. When military honors are appropriate, they are observed near the conclusion of the graveside service: a flag is presented to mourners, guns are fired into the air, and “Taps” is played. The sound sends “chills down one’s spine and tears down one’s eyes”. It is with these four pitches, traditionally for a bugle, but can be played effectively on a trumpet, that we remember the deceased and those who fought and lost their lives in service to the country.

I am always impressed when “Taps” is played when participating in a Memorial Day service or presiding at a graveside service. Because of the melody’s connotations with swells, buglers play it for military funerals. So when we hear, “Taps”, we take comfort that the fallen are sleeping in heavenly peace.

A Prayer for World Peace

We pray for the power to be gentle;
The strength to be forgiving;
The patience to be understanding;
And the endurance to accept the consequences
Of holding on to what we believe to be right.
May we put our trust in the power of good to overcome evil
And the power of love to overcome hatred.
We pray for the vision to see and the faith to believe
In a world emancipated from violence,
A new world where fear shall no longer lead persons to commit
injustice, nor selfishness make them bring suffering to others.
Help us to devote our whole life and thought and energy
To the task of making peace,
praying always for the inspiration and the power
to fulfill the destiny for which all humans were created.
-Author Unknown

Fr. Tim

May 19, 2024


Dear Parishioners,

At this time, I wish to thank the following catechists who have taught our children the Faith in both our Religious Education Program and the Catechesis and Aides of the Good Shepherd : Maria Crisafi, Suzanne Damato, Susan Fiorella, Dorothy Haase, Sarah Haase, James Hornby, Martha Maresco, Rosemarie McManus, Regina Molinelli, Christina Nappi, Karen Novelli, Toni O’Connor, Victoria Shields, Fr. Tim Wiggins, Barbara Zegarelli.

Fr. Tim

Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Holy Communion
April 21

Religious Education Holy Communion
May 11

Religious Education & Catechesis of the
Good Shepherd Confirmation
May 3

May 5, 2024

Dear Parishioners,

Tempus Fugit! Time Marches! Here we are in the fifth month of 2024, May. The month is dedicated to our Blessed Mother. The following hymn is appropriate as we “kick off” Mary’s month.

Bring Flowers of the Rarest
Bring flowers of the rarest
Bring blossoms the fairest,
From garden and woodland and hillside and dale;
Our full hearts are swelling,
Our glad voices telling
The praise of the loveliest flower of the vale!

O Mary we crown thee with blossoms today!
Queen of the Angels and Queen of the May.
O Mary we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels and Queen of the May.
O Virgin most tender,
Our homage we render,
Thy love and protection,
Sweet Mother, to win.
In danger defend us,
In sorrow befriend us,
And shield our hearts
From contagion and sin.

Our Second Graders, in our Religious Education Program, will present flowers to Mary during their First Holy Communion on Saturday, May 11. This year Caroline Geary will crown Mary.

Throughout May, Marian hymns will be sung. Our very talented and capable cantors and organist will use their voices to render beautiful Marian hymns to honor Mary.

Sing of Mary!
Fr. Tim

April 28, 2024

Dear Parishioners,

On Wednesday, April 24, a small group of countries celebrates Administrative Professional Day, formerly known as Admin Day or Secretary Day. This day recognizes the professional who keeps an office organized and running smoothly every day. Administrative Assistants include secretaries, receptionists, and other administrative support professionals.

During WWII, there was an increased need for skilled administrative personnel. Even with modern technology, and a reduction in the labor force, it is nice to have a “REAL” person/face on the other end of the phone and at the door to meet, greet, and execute.

Here at The Magdalene, we are blessed with Maria Paese as our Administrative Assistant and Marianne Scott as our Receptionist. Both handle many administrative tasks. Those of you who have had the opportunity to come into contact with them, tell me that they are not only a pleasure but a treasure to The Magdalene. On behalf of Parishioners and Friends, whom they serve, I say “Thank You” with a fl oral tribute on behalf of ALL of us. We’re also grateful for past Administrative Assistants who have served you with great loyalty and distinction.

Fr. Tim

April 21, 2024

Dear Parishioners,

On this fourth Sunday of Easter, we are presented with two celebrations:

First, we celebrate Good Shepherd Sunday. Jesus espouses the characteristics of a Good Shepherd. He is selfless, willing to lay down his life for the sheep. He is welcoming, and willing to lead those inside and outside his flock. He is faithful and willing to use his power for the greater glory of God. These are the types of characteristics we hope for in all leaders. Unfortunately, abuses of power are all too common in our world. How can we hold our leaders accountable? What would it be like to have “good shepherds” in positions of power within the government? Study your local leaders and commit to voting in the next election for morally strong leaders.

Second, we celebrate the 61st anniversary of the World Day of Prayer for Vocations. At today’s Mass, we pray for both callings to specific ways of life (priesthood, married, religious, single life) and for the many, varied, daily callings each of us experiences. Vocations are not like they were back in the day. While visiting St. Joseph’s Seminary during Holy Week, a parishioner and I toured the class photos gallery. As we walked the corridors, I noticed two trends: class pictures were very robust in numbers, but the numbers began to decline after the mid to late 70’s. In my class photo, 2002, there were six priests (4 archdiocesan priests and 2 religious). Also, I noticed the surnames reflected the waves of newly arrived immigrants. Will the class sizes continue to decline or will they increase? Prayers are powerful.

Third, please pray this prayer for an increase in vocations.
God our Father, thank you for calling men and women to serve in your Son’s Kingdom as priests, deacons, and consecrated persons. Send your Holy Spirit to help others to respond generously and courageously to your call. May our community of faith support vocations of sacrifi cial love in our youth and young adults.

Finally, You can read MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS FOR THE 61st WORLD DAY OF PRAYER FOR VOCATIONS “ Called to sow seeds of hope and to build peace” by scanning the bar code.

Fr. Tim

April 14, 2024

Dear Parishioners:

Throughout these weeks of Easter we read incredible stories of how the church is growing. These stories are recorded in the Acts of the Apostles did not unfold in secret, but in the open for all to see. Acts tell us the stories of what happened after Jesus’ resurrection and how people began to believe in him and follow his way.

The Magdalene is also growing sacramentally.
We welcome into the waters of Baptism: Becket Ethan Marr Bernardo Anthony Luciano, Emilia Anne, Tucci, Isabella Raine Carissimo, and Joseph Michael Lillis.
We welcome two couples through the Sacrament of Marriage. We welcome into the Church: Patty Cancro
We welcome into the parish the following families: Sandro and Melissa Carissimo, Suzanne Ferraro, Christopher and Kerry Scardino, Milan and Nicole Kana, Bridget Lillis, Roscoe and Kimberly Orman, Robert and Kathie Mackie, Eric and Katherine Straley, Daniel and Angela Lester, Matthew and Hayle Rodey,
14 children will receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation
14 children will receive the Sacrament of First Eucharist
14 children will receive the Sacrament of Confirmation.

The Magdalene needs to continue to grow. How? Consider becoming a:

● Lector, Eucharist Minister, altar server, usher, member of the music ministry, sacristy helper
● Volunteer as a catechist or catechist aid
● Member of the Hospitality Committee, Buildings & Grounds Committee, Altar Guild
● Member of the Women’s Bible Study

This coming July 21, we will celebrate our 130th Anniversary. The Parish Council is meeting and planning for this momentous occasion. Let us reflect on this question: What is a Parish? “A parish is a portion of the diocese under the care of a priest who is appointed to secure in virtue of his office as a pastor, the helps of religion for the faithful dwelling therein.” The faithful are called “parishioners.”

The Magdalene is a portion of the Archdiocese of New York in which many people dwell. The Archbishop assigns a pastor to serve the faithful in a parish.

With the collaboration of the Trustees, Finance Committee, Parish Council and staff, we work in tantum, volunteering our time and talents to help others grow in the religion we love and believe in so deeply.

Please think, pray, and make a sacrifice for the good of the parish. We need you to keep The Magdalene parish life flourishing TODAY and TOMORROW and for FUTURE generations to come.

In the Risen Lord,
Fr. Tim

March 31, 2024

Dear Parishioners,

O Come All Ye Faithful ! is one of the most traditional hymns sung at Christmas.

Jesus Christ Is Risen Today ! is one of the most traditional hymns sung on Easter Sunday! We sing the story over and over because of our great joy that death has been defeated and no longer reigns over us. This is the ultimate, joyful truth of God’s love for us.

As faithful people, we have journeyed for forty days, praying, abstaining, and fasting. Easter is commemorated with powerful symbols: washing of feet, ritual fire, oil, water, the Easter candle, chant, and more!

On this Easter Sunday, we rejoice that Jesus Christ has triumphed over sin and death for you and me, and for all who believe in him. We praise God for the triumph and hope of the Resurrection. The tomb is empty, and we thank God for those faithful disciples who went to the tomb early in the morning. What they experienced is Jesus’ resurrection, which is the foundation of our faith. This incredible event calls us to sing resurrectional hymns that increase our faith in the Risen Lord. What Easter hymn is in your heart? What Easter hymn emits from your vocal cords?

What Easter hymn fills your soul with resurrectional joy? My hymn is Alleluia, The Strife Is O’er. What are your reasons for singing with joy when you hear your favorite Easter hymn?

Jesus Christ is risen today; Alleluia!
Our triumphant holy day; Alleluia!
Who did once upon the cross; Alleluia!
Suffer to redeem our loss; Alleluia!
Hymns of praise then let us sing; Alleluia!

May we never cease to sing the Risen Lord’s praises!
Fr. Tim

March 24, 2024

Dear Parishioners,

Processions are not just a functional action of solemnly introducing the priest and other ministers to the sanctuary. They are also a visual expression of the people becoming a liturgical community of being together as a people of faith.

On Palm Sunday, the Mass may begin outdoors. The priest will bless the palm branches and proclaim the Gospel and then all process into the church. On Holy Thursday, the Mass of the Lord’s Supper does not conclude in the usual way. Instead, the procession forms right after communion. You are invited to join this procession, singing hymns and praying privately. During the Good Friday liturgy, you will be invited forward to venerate the cross. At the Easter Vigil, the blessing of the fire and lighting of the Easter candle takes place. The priest or deacon processes down the aisle singing, “Christ our Light”. The people then process into the dark church responding, “Thanks be to God.”

The processions of Holy Week draw us into the mystery of the death and resurrection of Christ. They also draw us closer to God as His pilgrim people. You are most welcome to process from your private homes to your spiritual home during Holy Week services. Holy Week, the most significant week in Catholicism, spans from Palm Sunday to Holy Saturday. It marks the final stretch before Easter Sunday, the celebration of Jesus’ Resurrection.

During this sacred week, Catholics all across the globe pray and reflect on the profound journey of Jesus’ suffering, sacrifice, and victory over death. Let us process with great love, joy, and devotion to The Magdalene.

We anticipate large crowds for our Holy Week Services. Please be mindful of our neighbors’ driveways. We are extremely grateful to the PHFH and the Union Church for allowing us to park on their properties.

The rectory will be closed on Good Friday.

Fr. Tim