The Roman Catholic Community of Saint Thomas Aquinas & Holy Family. Two churches - Joining as ONE Family - Together in Love.

Friday, June 13, 2008

One Faith -- One Baptism -- One Parish :-)

Saturday, May 31st, 2008 was a very special day for our new parish community of Holy Family and St. Thomas Aquinas as we celebrated with Bishop Nicholas De Marzio and welcomed home so many people who have a spiritual and emotional connection to our parish community. Canonically we are officially ONE community with 2 worship centers.

We gathered to celebrate our parish reconfiguration with Vespers sung in Latin by our Gregorian Choir at Holy Family Church. A procession of our Organizations on 4th Avenue. Thank God for providing the procession with a window of opportunity with no rain :-) A Mariachi musical interlude at St. Thomas Aquinas Church. The celebration of Holy Mass with Bishop DiMarzio as our Main Celebrant - beautiful hymns by Roger (our organist) and Lanie (our Cantor) AND the joyful sound of our Spanish Choir. Followed by a Feast & Dancing in the Auditorium.
But what were we celebrating with our banners, our prayers and our fellowship??
Reconfiguration is a big word, which describes the merger of Holy Family and St. Thomas Aquinas churches. The business term “merger” depicts how the corporate structure of our two parishes will be joined. However, the “business” that we are about as the people of God is creating something new. A community that will be neither Holy Family nor St. Thomas Aquinas and at the same time both Holy Family and St. Thomas Aquinas. A community that has the love of God bound into our hearts and is empowered by Jesus in the Eucharist. Just as each of us emerged from the waters of baptism, our new community will emerge from the giftedness that is the past and present of these two beloved parishes. May we understand ourselves as indispensable, inseparable parts of the Body of Christ, becoming Church together, living and loving His mission and ministry

The new parish we now form is an exciting opportunity to be open to the whisperings of the Spirit of the Lord among us as we together face the challenges of our future. Together we have to demonstrate our faith and hope, our courage and trust, our prayers and support as we journey together to become a new parish, one community of faith in Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Our new community is built on the rock of the our past – the founding of Holy Family Parish in 1876, St. Thomas Aquinas Parish in 1884 and St. Stanislaus Martyr in 1890. Beginning from the immigrants who first struggled to build our two beautiful Churches, to those who sustained the other projects and to those who continue to work to support our community today, there has been no lack of giving and loving enthusiasm among the faithful of Holy Family & Saint Thomas Aquinas Church.
Ever grateful for what we have received from those who have gone before us, let us build on our inheritance so that future generations may be blessed through us. With God's grace we can plant the seed of our reconfigured parish ~ nurture the seeds that were so lovingly planted by the members of Holy Family, St. Stanislaus Martyr & St. Thomas Aquinas Parishes in the past ~ and help build the Kingdom of God in Park Slope.
(with grateful appreciation for the influence of other people's reflections)