Next Week We Welcome Fr. JT Osunkwo, Visiting Missionary

08-27-2023Pastoral ReflectionsRev. Jude Thaddeus Osunkwo (JT)

I am Fr. Jude Thaddeus (JT) Osunkwo, a missionary priest with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston since 2010. I am visiting St. Mary’s Parish this weekend to speak at all Masses about the work of the Church in my home Diocese of Orlu in Nigeria.

Diocese of Orlu is quite a young Diocese of 43 years having been created on Nov. 29, 1980. Most of the parishes are in rural communities. The Diocese is blessed with a committed clergy and an enthusiastic laity. Being a young and rural diocese, it is faced with many challenges as would be expected. In addition to her main task of evangelization, the Diocese struggles with providing social amenities (education, health, clean water, etc.) to the predominantly poor rural communities. In Nigeria, government presence is scarce in the countryside. This puts the local church in the position to become "all things to all men and women."


Showing Mercy

08-20-2023Pastoral ReflectionsTracy Earl Welliver, MTS

Everyday Stewardship

The Jubilee Year of Mercy is now in the history books and looking back I wonder if I have been changed at all by the observance. Certainly the focus on mercy wasn't all about God's mercy toward me? Yes, I focused on my sin and the need for God's forgiveness and grace, but hopefully that changed how I live my life and how I offer mercy to others.


Happy Feast of St. Rocco

08-13-2023Pastoral Reflections

O Great St. Rocco, deliver us, we beseech you, from contagious diseases, and the contagion of sin. Obtain, for us, a purity of heart which will assist us to make good use of health, and to bear sufferings with patience. Teach us to follow your example in the practice of penance and charity, so that we may, one day enjoy the happiness of being with Christ, Our Savior, in Heaven. Amen.


Recognizing God In Your Ordinary Moments

08-06-2023Pastoral ReflectionsColleen Jurkiewicz Dorman

We’ve all had moments when we seem to get a glimpse of Heaven.

For me, they come with the sacraments: in the pew following my First Communion, kneeling before the bishop as he sealed my forehead with oil at my Confirmation, standing opposite my husband on our wedding day, cradling my newborns as the priest poured holy water over their little foreheads, claiming them for Christ. Moments when the veil between this world and the one to come is pulled away, and our hearts cry out: “Lord, it is good we are here.”


True Wisdom

07-30-2023Pastoral Reflections©LPi Father John Muir

Our culture seems more polarized and divided than ever. Into this wounded situation, our Catholic faith has a healing remedy to offer: the gift of wisdom. When the Lord offers to give King Solomon anything the monarch desires, he requests “an understanding heart” (1 Kings 3:9). In his polarized situation, the King doesn’t ask for power to defeat his enemies. He asks for a wise and understanding heart to judge right from wrong. This wisdom is elevated and fulfilled in Jesus who teaches us to bring forth “both the new and the old” (Matthew 13:52).


Patience is rooted in Hope

07-23-2023Pastoral Reflections©LPi — Father John Muir

Life, like the church, is often burdened with evil, smallness, and impurities. The Lord’s parables give us a hope-filled perspective on all three.

Evil: in Jesus’ parable about the good farmer whose enemy plants weeds at night, Jesus tells us that God is not the cause of evil but permits evil to exist with good out of his patient love. He will finally deal with it, but his love lets things stay messy for a time.


Accept Jesus

07-16-2023Pastoral Reflections ©LPi - Father John Muir

It’s not uncommon to hear people complain that we Catholics often fail in communicating our faith. Fair enough. We can and should improve there. But it’s interesting to notice that Jesus himself was implicitly accused by his disciples of a similar failure. This week in Matthew’s gospel they are perplexed that he speaks to the crowds in ambiguous parables. The Lord’s riddles leave many people more confused than before. He responds by pointing out that his parables have an intentional dual purpose: to hide (for some) and to reveal (for others) his Gospel: “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted” (Matthew 13:11). Is Jesus being unnecessarily difficult, obscurantist, or, worse, elitist?


Happy 12 Sunday in Ordinary Time

06-25-2023Pastoral ReflectionsFr. Bob Poitras

You are Invited to Fr. Bob’s Installation as Pastor of St. Mary Parish on Sat, Jun 24 at the 4:00pm Mass.

On Sat, Jun 24, at the 4:00pm Mass, Fr. Bob Poitras will be installed as the Pastor of St. Mary Parish by The Most Reverend Bishop Robert Reed. A reception in Sacred Heart Hall will follow the Installation Mass. All parishioners are invited to join in the celebration of the Mass and Reception and welcome Fr. Bob, officially, as our new Pastor. God Bless Fr. Bob!

Happy 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time

06-18-2023Pastoral ReflectionsRev. Robert A. Poitras

Time Flies When You’re Having Fun!

Hi Friends,

I can’t believe it’s already been two weeks since I arrived at St. Mary’s. Where does time go? I guess the old saying holds true, “Time flies when you’re having fun.” It has been a joy to settle in here at St. Mary Parish. On Fri, Jun 9, I had an opportunity to return to my last parish of St. Pius V and Holy Family Parish in Lynn, to celebrate the Baccalaureate Mass and commencement ceremony for the 8th Graders at St. Pius V School. I was bragging about St. Mary’s so much I think they couldn’t wait for me to leave! But truly, it has been a great start.


The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

06-11-2023Pastoral ReflectionsRev. Robert A. Poitras

Thank You for your warm welcome!

Dear Friends, it is an honor for me to be joining the great community of faith of St. Mary’s Parish in Franklin, MA. I want to first thank each of you for your very warm welcome. Your kind expressions by email, the warm greetings at our liturgies last week and weekend and the great signs of welcome posted all around the parish property. All of these expressions of welcome have made my transition as comfortable as possible. Thank You!


Last Weekly Letter as Pastor of St. Mary Parish

05-28-2023Pastoral ReflectionsFr. Brian Manning

Dear Parishioners and Friends of Saint Mary Parish,

This is my last weekly letter as the Pastor of Saint Mary Parish. I retire on May 31st, this coming Wednesday. Certainly I am looking forward to the next chapter of my life, but I do feel sadness at leaving this wonderful Parish and Parishioners. I will be retiring to my family home in Falmouth, MA.


Happy 7th Sunday of Easter

05-21-2023Pastoral ReflectionsFr. Brian Manning

In listening to or reading this weekend’s Gospel, we hear of Jesus’ promises of the Spirit. This passage is a continuation of the lengthy Last Supper “speech” which we have been reading these past few Sundays. Scripture scholars suggest that John composed this long discourse by selecting various words of Jesus from other times. The author John did this so we would know that these words of Jesus are very important, and we should ponder the meaning of His wisdom. Note how these words all have a clearer meaning for us because we hear and read them after His Death and Resurrection; this was not the case for the apostles and disciples. His followers needed time to come to understand. It is interesting that John did not write everything down which Jesus did and said because there would not be enough books in the world to contain what could be written.


Happy 6th Sunday of Easter

05-14-2023Pastoral ReflectionsFr. Brian Manning

We read and hear in this weekend’s Gospel, that Jesus promises the Spirit. John is the only gospel writer who records this very long talk at the Last Supper. Learned scripture scholars theorizes that when John assembled his Gospel, he chose to set these words of Jesus at the Last Supper. This particular position of his words accents strongly their importance and invites us to pay close attention. The words of Jesus become clearer after his death and resurrection. We also need to remember that John goes out of his way to remind us that at the end of his Gospel, he comments that if he were to write down everything Jesus did, there wouldn’t be enough books in the world to contain what could be written. We have more than enough of the Lord’s words recorded in this Gospel.


5th Sunday of Easter

05-07-2023Pastoral ReflectionsFr. Brian Manning

When I back out of the driveway at the Church, I always get to see the house which was constructed only a few years ago in my view. I often think of all the time and many steps it took to build the house. There were many, many trade and craft people involved, besides the necessary plans and permits. The General Contractor had to be licensed and this “GC” had to employ many licensed sub-contractors, such as electricians and plumbers for the construction. The “GC” has to be a good leader and also knowledgeable and experienced in the construction trades. The “GC” has to start with the first steps and work on the project until it is completed and the owner has a Certificate of Occupancy.