As we begin this Fifth Week of Easter, we are reminded by the Lord that he is the way to the Father, he is the truth of the Father’s love, and he is the life made real for us. This is not just what we believe, it is also a reassurance during this time of COVID-19. We need assurance that all is well, despite the different and difficult situation we are experiencing. There has to be someone who offers us something different, a ray of hope at a time like this. It is Jesus who stands with us, reminding us that he is present in and through us. He invites us to reflect that presence in who we are and how we interact with one another.  While this Easter Season has been most unusual for all of us, it is still a time of Mystagogia, a time to reflect more deeply on the resurrection and its impact and effect in our lives. We are still sent to others as reminders of the new life and hope that Jesus gained for us and which is engendered in each of us. Today’s Gospel and the Gospels for the next two Sundays are part of what is called the Priestly Prayer of Jesus. They take place at the Last Supper and they portray Jesus praying over his apostles before he dies. They are similar to his last will and testament for the apostles because as he leaves them, they will have to continue his work. And so, he reassures them that he will be with them for all days, as he is with us.  While it is unusual for us to wear masks in public and to social distance from each other, this may become the new normal for us. There is always the concern that large groups will congregate together, thus creating more problems for us all. At this point, I am not sure what will happen with the Masses on the weekend, but we will have to take it one week at a time. Our plan is to live-stream the Mass each Sunday through the month of May. This way we will all be safe. We, the Parish Staff, will continue to discuss how best to serve all of you when everything reopens. I will keep you abreast of all of that. Even our worship may look different, not so much what we do, but how we are configured in church.  All of the Mass intentions from March 15 through the month of May of this year have been re-scheduled through2020 and into March of next year. If you have scheduled a mass during this time and want to know the date it has been rescheduled, please call the rectory and we will gladly tell you.  On behalf of the entire Parish Staff: FR. TONY, FR. JOHN, DEACON JERRY, DEACON DAN, NANCY CAPUTO, ANN MARIE GESUALDO, DAN PALKO, CAROLINE PONTERIO, KAREN COCCO, OUR SUPPORT STAFF & MYSELF, I want to wish all the mothers of Saint James parish A HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY! Whether you celebrate together at home, or virtually, may it be a time to recognize the gifts all of you are to your families and to all of us.  HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!! FELICE GIORNO DELLE MAMME!!! FELIZ DIA DE LAS MADRES!!  ~ Fr. Joe

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