A Message from Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio, May 2020



To the Faithful of the Diocese in Brooklyn & Queens: As you read this letter, we are in the midst of the Easter Season. We rejoice in the risen Jesus and in what that Resurrection means for us who are members of His Body. By His Cross and Resurrection, Christ has set us free.

Yet, as much as we believe and rejoice in that Paschal mystery, we are celebrating in a very difficult and challenging time. Our observance of Lent this year was marked by unexpected and unwelcome penances for which we did not ask. Easter is marred by the same. We always trust in Jesus and His promise to be with us always and His command to us not to fear.

The pandemic we are experiencing has done many things. It has, first of all, taken from us some of our loved ones. Many of us have experienced the suffering of so many sick people. At the same time we have also seen the strength and resilience of many of our first responders, doctors, nurses and other medical personnel, and so many more who are considered to be essential workers. This has moved us to feel and express a gratitude which we perhaps should have expressed previously. So we mourn our beloved dead, we continue to pray for the sick among us and we thank those who help bravely.

Our spiritual lives have changed, too. We have experienced the closure of our churches. How painful this is to us, who feel that the Church is a “second home” in so many ways. We have been unable to receive the sacraments. I am thinking most especially of the Sacrament of Penance and Eucharist.

Please allow me to reflect on that for a moment. The sacraments are indeed the way that Jesus chose to remain in our lives and the way that we continue to experience His presence and work among us. Nothing can replace that for us. It is most especially true in the Eucharist where Jesus is truly and substantially present to us that we experience Him in a unique and irreplaceable way. However, this experience has also taught us that Jesus cannot be limited. He cannot be contained. We can and do experience Him in many different ways. A sincere Act of Contrition and a Spiritual Communion, while not replacements for the sacraments, are ways to allow Jesus into our lives. We have even been unable to mourn our dead in the ways we are accustomed to doing. While this is heart breaking, we know that God’s mercy is overwhelming and we can pray for our loved ones at all times.

The closing of our churches has been unavoidable, as Brooklyn and Queens has had nearly 60% of all cases of Covid-19 in New York City. Though there are many who doubt and even publicly speak out against the decisions made to close churches and maintain social distancing, please know that decisions like these have not been taken lightly, especially in this Diocese where Brooklyn and Queens are literally at the epicenter of the crisis in New York City, which is the epicenter of the United States. We have had to resort to these desperate measures to prevent the further loss of life and spread of disease. Life is God’s great gift and we must protect it.

That is why our churches will remain closed until it is safe to reopen them, a decision that will be made by Diocese of Brooklyn with the assistance of Mr. Joseph Esposito (former Commissioner of the Office of Emergency Management for New York City) in conjunction with public health authorities. When our churches do reopen, unfortunately, we will not be able to resume church life as we enjoyed it before. There will be changes to keep everyone healthy and safe. We will respond as always, as faithful People of God, to the challenges placed before us. I ask that we all strive to understand, to adapt and to rise up to these challenges.

I want to thank our priests and deacons who have learned new ways to minister to you: for streamed Masses and retreats, homilies and talks, and various other engaging events on line which all help us remain close as the parish families we are and keep our spirits lifted as joy filled Christians.

We continue to pray for our beloved dead, may they rest in peace; and we pray for the sick that they will experience the presence of Christ the Healer; for our governmental leaders; for our dedicated first responders, doctors, nurses, medical personnel, funeral directors, and essential workers; for the clergy and religious of our Diocese and for us all. May the Lord, who is Mercy Itself, lead us out of this difficult time and into a time of good health and new life.

The month of May is dedicated in a particular way to our Blessed Mother. Our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has asked us to pray the Rosary most fervently this month for an end to this pandemic. We place our trust in the intercession of Mary and of her blessed spouse St. Joseph whose feast we celebrate today, May 1st. Mary, Mother of the Church, pray for us! St. Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church, pray for us!

With an assurance of my continued remembrance of you in prayer, I am

Sincerely in Christ,

Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio, Ph.D., D.D. Bishop of Brooklyn

A Message from the Holy Father, May 2020


Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The month of May is approaching, a time when the People of God express with particular intensity their love and devotion for the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is traditional in this month to pray the Rosary at home within the family. The restrictions of the pandemic have made us come to appreciate all the more this “family” aspect, also from a spiritual point of view.

For this reason, I want to encourage everyone to rediscover the beauty of praying the Rosary at home in the month of May. This can be done either as a group or individually; you can decide according to your own situations, making the most of both opportunities. The key to doing this is always simplicity, and it is easy also on the internet to find good models of prayers to follow.

I am also providing two prayers to Our Lady that you can recite at the end of the Rosary, and that I myself will pray in the month of May, in spiritual union with all of you. I include them with this letter so that they are available to everyone.

Dear brothers and sisters, contemplating the face of Christ with the heart of Mary our Mother will make us even more united as a spiritual family and will help us overcome this time of trial. I keep all of you in my prayers, especially those suffering most greatly, and I ask you, please, to pray for me. I thank you, and with great affection I send you my blessing.

Rome, Saint John Lateran, 25 April 2020
Feast of Saint Mark the Evangelist

Pope Francis

First Prayer to Our Lady
O Mary,
You shine continuously on our journey
as a sign of salvation and hope.
We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick,
who, at the foot of the cross,
were united with Jesus’ suffering,
and persevered in your faith.

“Protectress of the Roman people”,
you know our needs,
and we know that you will provide,
so that, as at Cana in Galilee,
joy and celebration may return
after this time of trial.

Help us, Mother of Divine Love,
to conform ourselves to the will of the Father
and to do what Jesus tells us.
For he took upon himself our suffering,
and burdened himself with our sorrows
to bring us, through the cross,
to the joy of the Resurrection.

We fly to your protection,
O Holy Mother of God;
Do not despise our petitions
in our necessities,
but deliver us always
from every danger,
O Glorious and Blessed Virgin.

The Second Prayer
“We fly to your protection, O Holy Mother of God”.

In the present tragic situation, when the whole world is prey to suffering and anxiety, we fly to you, Mother of God and our Mother, and seek refuge under your protection.

Virgin Mary, turn your merciful eyes towards us amid this coronavirus pandemic. Comfort those who are distraught and mourn their loved ones who have died, and at times are buried in a way that grieves them deeply. Be close to those who are concerned for their loved ones who are sick and who, in order to prevent the spread of the disease, cannot be close to them. Fill with hope those who are troubled by the uncertainty of the future and the consequences for the economy and employment.

Mother of God and our Mother, pray for us to God, the Father of mercies, that this great suffering may end and that hope and peace may dawn anew. Plead with your divine Son, as you did at Cana, so that the families of the sick and the victims be comforted, and their hearts be opened to confidence and trust.

Protect those doctors, nurses, health workers and volunteers who are on the frontline of this emergency, and are risking their lives to save others. Support their heroic effort and grant them strength, generosity and continued health.

Be close to those who assist the sick night and day, and to priests who, in their pastoral concern and fidelity to the Gospel, are trying to help and support everyone.

Blessed Virgin, illumine the minds of men and women engaged in scientific research, that they may find effective solutions to overcome this virus.

Support national leaders, that with wisdom, solicitude and generosity they may come to the aid of those lacking the basic necessities of life and may devise social and economic solutions inspired by farsightedness and solidarity.

Mary Most Holy, stir our consciences, so that the enormous funds invested in developing and stockpiling arms will instead be spent on promoting effective research on how to prevent similar tragedies from occurring in the future.

Beloved Mother, help us realize that we are all members of one great family and to recognize the bond that unites us, so that, in a spirit of fraternity and solidarity, we can help to alleviate countless situations of poverty and need. Make us strong in faith, persevering in service, constant in prayer.

Mary, Consolation of the afflicted, embrace all your children in distress and pray that God will stretch out his all-powerful hand and free us from this terrible pandemic, so that life can serenely resume its normal course.

To you, who shine on our journey as a sign of salvation and hope, do we entrust ourselves, O Clement, O Loving, O Sweet Virgin Mary. Amen.

St. Theresa Guild Fundraiser – May 18, 2019

The St. Theresa Guild


“European Masquerade”

Saturday, May 18 at 6:15pm

St. Francis of Paola Auditorium, 200 Woodpoint Road

Food, Wine, Dessert, Live Entertainment and Fabulous Prizes!

Tickets are $35.00 per person

For ticket purchase, please call Marie Perrotto # 718-389-1073 or Annette Marino # 646-361-8467 or email arm718@aol.com

Divine Mercy Parish – Holy Week Schedule 2019

Holy Thursday, April 18, at 7:30pm we will celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper at St. Cecilia Church.

Good Friday, April 19, at 1:00pm we will conduct the Stations of the Cross throughout the streets of our parish, beginning at St. Cecilia Church to St. Nicholas Church and ending at St. Francis of Paola Church.

After the Station of the Cross, at 3:00pm we will have the Good Friday Service of the Lord’s Passion in English at St. Francis of Paola Church.

Good Friday, at 7:00pm the Service of the Lord’s Passion in Spanish will be held at St. Nicholas Church.

Holy Saturday, April 20, at 8:00pm the Easter Vigil Mass will be celebrated at St. Nicholas Church.

Reconciliation Monday – April 15, 2019

All the parishes of our diocese will offer the Sacrament of Reconciliation on Monday, April 15 from 3:00pm to 9:00pm in preparation for the Holy Days of Paschal Triduum.  

St. Theresa Guild Meeting

The next meeting of the St. Theresa Guild will take place on Thursday, April 11, at 7:30 pm in the St. Francis of Paola rectory basement.

The theme is “Easter”.

Please join in prayer following the 5 pm mass on Saturday, April 6, at St. Francis of Paola Church. We will assemble in the front left pews.

New members are always welcome.

Nocturnal Adoration – April 6, 2019

Join us on Saturday, April 6, at 8:00pm for Nocturnal Adoration in St. Cecilia’s Chapel.

All are welcome!

First Saturday Devotion – April 6, 2019

Honor the First Saturday Devotion


Honor of the Immaculate Heart of Mary

Please join us for the celebration of Mass on Saturday, April 6, 2019:

  • Attend Mass – 7:45am / 8:30am / 5:00pm
  • Pray the Rosary
  • Go to the Sacrament of Reconciliation within one week of this date
  • Reflect for 15 minutes on one of the mysteries of the Rosary


Bake Sale & Flea Market

Support St. Nicholas Church

Sunday, March 31, 2019

10am to 1pm

in the

Msgr. Vetro Parish Hall

26 Olive Street, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Cookies, Cake, Coffee, Toys, Housewares, Clothes and much more!

Concert Series on April 6th

J.S. Bach with the International Street Cannibals

Please join us for an all Bach Concert on Saturday, April 6th

after the 5pm Mass at St. Francis of Paola Church.

The concert  will feature:

Dan Barrett – conductor

Christiana Cole – mezzo-soprano

Keith Underwood – flute

The program includes the Orchestral Suite No. 2 in B- minor


Cantata No. 82, “Ich Habe Genug”

Please take a flyer from the Church entrance, invite friends, and find us on Facebook, @dmpconcertseries.

Experiencing Bach’s music is a wonderful way to enter into the last few weeks of Lent.