New Records, Firsts, & Expeditions
We set new records this past weekend with 902 people inside our church during the five Masses and a one Mass record of 242 at the 4 PM Mass. Our October 2019 Mass count was 1518. That means we're back to 59% of our normal Mass attendance.
Mass Inside Outside
4 PM 242 0
6 PM 137 3
8 AM 138 1
10 AM 171 2
12 PM 214 0
Total 902 6
I vacationed for the first time in two years and visited friends in Carrollton, Virginia. I ate in a restaurant for the first time since the lockdown. I swam in the ocean for the first time since 2012. I ran for the first time outside of New Jersey.
These firsts are connected to the pandemic and caring for family members almost constantly from 2000 to 2020. With fewer restrictions these days, I'm trying new things.
Expeditions & Pandemic
It's ok to start with small expeditions to places like ShopRite. With the pandemic heating up again in a variety of places, this summer looks like a good time to go on other expeditions in order to visit family and friends. Then we'll be better prepared to navigate any future restrictions.
The benefits of Mass make it one of the earlier expeditions we ought to take. And more and more people are returning to Mass. It's during Mass that we can enter into the sacred mysteries and are closest to Jesus. He then showers us with the grace we need to face whatever comes our way.
With my recent expeditions and changed family situation, I'm beginning to think about some grander expeditions. I might visit relatives in California or Ireland. Some day, I'd like to go the Holy Land to see where Jesus walked upon this Earth. I'm also thinking locally to see what adventures the Lord has in store for us here at St. John's.
God love you,
Fr. Jim O'Neill
on Tuesday, July 13 at 11:55AM