Second Sunday of Lent
Fr. Markey’s Homily for this Sunday about his departure from St. Mary Church:
On this second Sunday of Lent, Mother Church always places before us the fourth Luminous mystery of the Holy Rosary for our reflection, the Transfiguration of Our Blessed Lord on Mount Tabor. There is the great wonder of seeing Our Blessed Lord miraculously transfigured before the eyes of Sts. Peter, James and John, but also the message about the coming passion later in Lent. Ultimately, there is the certain hope of the resurrection. This weekend I have some important news to share about some changes here at St. Mary Church.
Last fall, Bishop Caggiano spoke to me about the possibility of returning to school to obtain an advanced degree in philosophy, with the intent to teach philosophy to our seminarians upon my return. In early January, the Bishop met with me and asked that I begin these studies in the fall of 2015.
While I am grateful for the appointment from Bishop Caggiano, I am at the same time filled with sadness because I will have to say good-bye to the beloved families of St. Mary Church, reflecting on the many joys and sorrows that we have shared through the past 11 years. However, each of you and your families will always be remembered in my thoughts and prayers.
After a number of recent meetings with the bishop, I asked the bishop if it would be possible to take a sabbatical prior to entering into studies. This would be an opportunity to spend time with my parents and to attend to some personal issues in my life. Bishop Caggiano has agreed. My scheduled time for departure will be in April and my last Sunday here will be April 12, Divine Mercy Sunday (Low Sunday).
I am sure one of the first questions that comes to mind is, “Who will take over as the new pastor?” Bishop Caggiano has asked me to announce that he has assigned Fr. Cipolla to be the new pastor of St. Mary Church. Of course we know Fr. Cipolla brings many gifts and many years of experience to this position. It also maintains continuity with much of the work we have been doing these past 11 years.
As we move forward, I ask for your prayers and support. You can be assured of my prayers as well. Thank you for the love and support you have shown me during this time. The many good works that we accomplished working together along with your kindness is something I will always cherish in my life. I also ask you to pray and support Fr. Cipolla, Fr. Check, and Deacon Steve during this time of transition.
After Mass I will be available to talk more with you. Let us entrust this time of transition into the hands of the Blessed Virgin Mary, that she would guide us on the path of peace and hope.
Sincerely in Christ,
Fr. Greg J. Markey