It is that time of year when we're invited to respond to the Bishop's Annual Appeal which supports many ministries and programs in our diocese. Watch this video to learn more about this wonderful Appeal that helps so many. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SYMONc5S8IA
The Vicariate for Evangelization and Communication is essential to how we expand our efforts to share the Gospel message and make Jesus Christ's love know to all. This past year has been like no other. The pandemic has impacted the way we conduct our personal and faith-filled lives. Yet, one thing remains steady, God's infinite and unfailing love for us all. God's constant love is a source of hope for all of us. This pandemic has forced us to evolve in ways we aren't used to. Instead of attending daily Mass or Mass on the weekend in person, we are now watching from our living rooms on social media or on our television. Many churches have live-streamed Mass, Adoration, Stations of the Cross, Bible studies, Faith Formation, etc. What is so important is that we are still sharing the Gospel message! We must continue to journey with others, even if we are physically apart, to make the Good News known to all. The Bishop's Annual Appeal financially supports this ministry. Your gift helps spread God's word!
The Catholic Spirit is the official newspaper of the Diocese of Metuchen. With our very own bishop as publisher, The Catholic Spirit made its debut on February 29, 1996. Bishop Edward T. Hughes, then Shepherd of the Diocese established the Diocese of Metuchen’s official newspaper and said the name was chosen “to indicate our reliance on the Holy Spirit. We pray that the spirit of the Lord will animate our pages and lead us to produce a spirited and lively newspaper.” On July 8, 2010, The Catholic Spirit began a new chapter in its 14-year history. The paper went from a weekly, subscription-only publication to a bi-weekly newspaper distributed in all parishes. Supported by the Bishop's Annual Appeal, The Catholic Spirit has been strengthening the faith of all Catholic people, keeping them informed about the church and its teachings. Visit www.catholicspirit.com today to learn more about this fine newspaper!
In 1982 Catholic Charities was founded. Driven by Catholic social teaching, Catholic Charities, Diocese of Metuchen provides quality services with dignity and respect to the poor, vulnerable, and all people in need and partners with families and communities to improve the quality of life. The global pandemic of 2020 caused the loss of countless lives, widespread critical illness and has impacted every family around the world in so many ways. The important work of Catholic Charities could not and did not stop during this difficult time. Your generosity and sacrifice helps to ensure that no one is left homeless, hungry or without emotional support during these hard times. To learn more about this outstanding charity, please visit https://ccdom.org/
The Bishop's Annual Appeal helps support those men who are considering the priesthood and those who are in the seminary presently. How vital their faith formation is and how much it will benefit our diocese. It is a blessing that we have 24 men currently studying for the priesthood and, with God's grace, the number will be growing. Over the years, we have been blessed to have been able to send our seminarians to Immaculate Conception Seminary at Seton Hall University, St. Mary's Seminary in Baltimore, Maryland, Pontifical North American College in Rome, Italy, St. Vincent's Seminary in Latrobe, Pa (seen in the photo above) and Pope Saint John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, MA for late vocations to the priesthood. With all we have been blessed with, there are challenges to address, that is the expense of educating and preparing our seminarians to become amazing future priests of the Catholic Church.
Ministering to those experiencing pain, confusion, and fear, and those preparing for a happy death is the role of the clergy assigned to hospital ministry. The chaplain is there to provide a listening ear, emotional support, and spiritual support. They also support bereaved family members, offering confession and guidance at a stressful time. However, sometimes they get to celebrate with families who receive great news. The Bishop's Annual Appeal helps to support the work of the priests serving as chaplains in more than 15 hospitals and health care facilities located in our diocese. The global pandemic has put some limitations on hospital and care facility visitations but the chaplain is there to bring Christ to the sick.
We simply can't forget about our retired priests! There are presently 11 retired priests living at the Maria Regina Residence. Your gift helps to defray the operational costs for this retirement facility for the men who have served our parishes so faithfully. We, the faithful, are called to assist in meeting their health and material needs. When you make your contribution in support of our retired priests, you are giving back to them in thanksgiving for all they have done for us.
We currently have 2 priests and 1 deacon assigned to Prison Ministry in our diocese. With the help of a six parish-based prison ministries, they serve 10 correctional facilities within the Diocese of Metuchen. For most Catholics, going to Mass means going to their parish church. Inmates attend Mass not in their parish, but in their prison’s library. Those incarcerated need to hear the Good News and receive the sacraments too. For some it is the first time hearing the Word of God read to them. Your gift helps this ministry thrive in a place where God sometimes doesn't exist.
The Diocese of Metuchen currently has 137 active and permanent deacons, 29 retired deacons, and another 17 in formation!!! While serving at the altar and preaching are their most visible roles, our permanent deacons do so much more! To name just a few ways, they are the sign of Christ the Servant among us, they are baptizing infants, assisting at weddings, presiding at wake services, teaching faith formation classes, serving meals to the poor and bringing the Eucharist to the sick. In our own church, the deacons visit the sick, reach out to the needy, teach faith formation, run a social ministry that communicates with those who either lost a spouse or are in need of spiritual guidance. They are also extremely kind to those who are financially struggling. Your gift to the Appeal helps to defray tuition costs for the formation and continuing education of our permanent deacons.
Other pastoral ministries supported by the Bishop's Annual Appeal include Human Life & Dignity, Hispanic and Cultural Diversity Ministries, Ongoing Faith Formation, Family Life & Worship & Liturgical Formation.
Restoring respect for human life, from the moment of conception until natural death, is an essential task of the Church. Through the implementation of the diocesan Respect for Life program and activities the Human Life & Dignity Ministry gives witness to God's truth and to embody our Lord's command to love one another as He loves us.
The Office for Cultural Diversity Ministries provides pastoral care to immigrants and people of different ethnicities, cultures, and languages. It also seeks to encourage the inclusion and fuller participation of all God's people in the life and ministry of the Church by building up their Catholic identity in a spirit of unity in diversity.
While the pandemic may prevent us from gathering, it cannot keep us from uniting. This year, the Archdiocese of Newark in collaboration with the dioceses of Paterson, Metuchen, Trenton, and Camden are rallying catechists, ministry leaders, and families to better know and teach the faith. Together, we will face the coronavirus crisis with prayer, community, and hope. Through these unprecedented times, we must not let a crisis of health lead to a crisis of faith, and so the Diocese of Metuchen is here to offer you spiritual support, digital community, and resources to deepen your faith and friendship with Jesus even through these challenging times. Remember at the end of the day we are #onechurchtogether.
The Office of Family Life & Worship & Liturgical Formation supports ministries of welcome, formation, and pastoral care for members of families, throughout the life cycle, as they strive to be disciples of the Gospel and faithful witnesses to Christ-centered life within their particular family as well as the larger families of their ecclesial community and society. We offer Marriage Preparation, Natural Family Planning and Adult Enrichment as well as Marriage Encounter Weekends and Retreats, pastoral care for adult children of divorce, bereavement ministries and more.
These are just some of the ministries and programs your contribution to the Bishop's Annual Appeal supports. Your gift provides opportunities for so many throughout the diocese. Every gift counts, no matter the size. You are contributing to the ongoing mission of the Catholic Church! You are bringing the Good News to all! You are giving hope to all people everywhere. Let us join together to help support Bishop Checchio! God bless.
As an extra incentive and to provide parishes with a share in the success of the BAA, parishes will receive rebates totaling 50% of the amount collected over goal!!!