Previous month:
February 2013
Next month:
April 2013

March 2013

More Photos of Palm Sunday Procession from Sea Bright to Rumson

Palm Sunday Procession
Stunning View of our Pilgrims from "Mount Sandy"

Don Carolina our Music Director Gathers the Choir to Begin the Procession

A Trio of Altar Servers Leads the Way

Don Carolina and the Choir Make Their Way Through Sandy Streets

Processions Nears the Bridge

Procession Nears Mass at Holy Cross

Truly a Blessed Day

Palm Sunday Procession through the lens of Sue Symington. More great photos!

Holy Oils Distributed by Bishop at Chrism Mass in Trenton

Oil of the Sick, Oil of Catechumens, Sacred Chrism
Bishop David O'Connell presided at the Chrism Mass on Monday evening at St. Mary of the Assumption Cathedral in Trenton with concelebrating priests, deacons and parish representatives from the entire diocese. The three holy oils were blessed and every parish given an aliquot of each. The inclement weather could not dampen Bishop O'Connell's spirit and sincerity but the cathedral was not filled to capacity as usual.

Diocesan priests renew their promise of priestly committment at the Chrism mass each year.

Holy Cross Parish will officially receive the oils at the beginning of the Triduum, the Mass of the Lord's Supper on Thursday evening.


Hosanna Palm Sunday

Palm Procession 2013 009
Parishioners Gather at Sea Bright for Palm Procession

Palm Procession 2013 015
Father Gets the Bright Idea to Try and Climb "Mount Sandy"
Palm Procession 2013 023
Not Only Safe Uptop, But Beautiful. It doesn't get any better than this!

Palm Procession 2013 036
Proclamation of the Gospel and Blessing of the Palms
Palm Procession 2013 037
Parishioners Head for Rumson Led by Children's Choir
Palm Procession 2013 045
Heading to the Bridge Via Ocean Avenue
Palm Procession 2013 056
Safely in Rumson
Palm Procession 2013 078
We All Catch our Breath Before Processing Into Mass

Thank you to the Sea Bright and Rumson Police Department for keeping our procession safe, to the Children's Choir and their parents for braving the wind and temperature, to Don Carolina for his expert Musical Direction and to our parishioners and parish staff who facilitated the procession. Paul LaPlante took most of these great photos. God provided the beautiful sky!
Please join us for the liturgies of Holy Week, especially the Mass of the Lord's Supper on Thursday evening, Veneration of the Cross on Good Friday and the Easter Vigil Mass on Holy Saturday night.

Join Our Palm Sunday Procession From Seabright to Rumson

Jesus Rising!    

Join us for our annual Palm Sunday Procession from Seabright to Rumson on Palm Sunday morning. We will gather at the Municipal Parking lot in Seabright beginning at 10 AM and process at 10:15 AM from Seabright to our gymatorium for our 10:30 AM mass. 

This year our procession will be led by our brand new Holy Cross Parish Children's Choir led by our Music Director Don Carolina. The weather has been brisk in recent years, but we'll process in any weather but heavy rain.

The procession is a splendid sign of our Christian faith that our hope in Christ's resurrection will make all things new. Please join us!



Palm Sunday in Seabright

Beyer's Informative and Beautiful Presentation


St. Kieran Window
Joe Beyer gave an informative and beautiful presentation on the
Joe Beyer (at left)  Displays Print of St. Kieran Window to Holy Cross Parishioners
art of stained glass window making with a spotlight on D'Ascenszo Studios and Edwin Sharkey, the company and designer of our newly acquired windows.


The surprise of the evening was a full sized, color print of our St. Kieran window, who even in his slightly pixellated state look magnificent. I think we'll have St. Kieran make an appearance at all our masses on the weekend of our groundbreaking, April 14th. Face









The window shows Kieran holding his crozier as founder of the Monastery at  Clonmacnoise. The monastery itself is pictured at his feet in the background along the shores of the River Shannon. A hair shirt protrudes ever so slightly from underneath his fine garments. 

Sacrament of Reconciliation

Reconciliation with child
Today, Fr. Cody and Msgr. Zaccardo helped me hear the confessions of our school children. Classes are brought in one or two at a time so that the children do not wait too long. 

I was delighted at their level of preparation and attentiveness. Their confessions gave evidence of a good, age-appropriate examination of conscience and many children were quite thoughtful and thorough in their remarks.

Thank you to all teachers, parents and parish staff for your efforts to instruct our children how to follow faithfully in Jesus' footsteps.


St Francis Life Events in Holy Cross Windows

There are a few windows which depict events I cannot identify with certainty. I'm pretty sure the labels accurately describe the windows in this post.


Francis prays for Guidance

Francis Surrenders Riches

Build My Church

Francis Meets Pope Innocent

Francis and Clare

Francis and the Animals

Francis and the Christmas Manger

Francis Receives the Stigmata

Francis Meets the Sultan

? Francis Meets St. Dominic

Francis Cares for Lepers

Francis on Sickbed

?Francis Designates Successor

St Francis Window

St Francis Window for Holy Cross Church

Who would have guessed that one of the saints in our stained glass windows would be the new pope's inspiration for his papal name?

We have not only the large stained glass window pictured here, but 14 smaller windows depicting events in the life of St. Francis!



Be sure to join us on Wednesday evening March 20th at 7:00 PM in the gymatorium for a discussion about the windows with stained glass artisan Joe Beyer of Beyer Studios.


Spring Is Coming!

DSCN0522I was gently reminded yesterday that "we need to move some plants." That's certainly true.

Many of the places we have planted perennials over the last years will need to be disturbed for the church construction. Earlier in the season, all the heritage roses in harm's way were pruned back to the ground in preparation for being transplanted. All plantings behind the church bordering the parish field will need to be moved or disposed of. Some of the many burning bushes were not in particularly good condition, but the hydrangeas, half dozen heritage rose bushes, dozens of hosta, pulmonaria, coreopsis, coneflowers, sedum, hyssop and others were quite happy and proliferating well. It will be relatively easy to move some of them, but others look like a challenge. One of the "Home Run" roses I planted when I first arrived has quite a well developed set of roots. 

All the plantings along the side door of the rectory near the church will also need to be relocated - a witch hazel or two, hundreds of Stella d'Oro daylillies, a Julia Child rosebush along with several others heirloom varieties. All the rose bushes and clematis around the air conditioning units for the church will also be dug. 

Some of the trees around the church are overgrown and many are in sad shape after the storms, but a holly or two may be rescued. The perennial border of evergreens and others alongside the handicapped ramp will also need to be moved. 


The plantings in the two islands between the large and small parking lots need to go too, I think. There are dozens of day lillies, several species of heritage roses, and the two ornamental trees needing new places to grow. Many of the other plants like California poppies, Blanket flowers and others are so easy to resow that they can be sacrificed if necessary.

vizsla carrying dog bed
Someone is ready to move!


Lots of digging! Any ideas?Perhaps some time after the groundbreaking, we could organize a
dig (or two) to help move some of the plants. Some will move easily with a trowel, others will take some good work with a shovel. If we pot some of them up, they might even help us raise some funds for the church project? 

Let me know if you have any good ideas, or if you would be willing to help us dig up some plants when we make plans. Thanks!

Wait Until You Hear the Music This Sunday!

Arts_instruments_190443We have obtained the use of a "loaner" Allen Organ for use in our gymatorium until the new church is completed. The range of sounds it can produce is far greater than our Clavinova. Don Carolina took it for a test drive on Thursday afternoon and it sounded did he! The new instrument will add immeasurably to both adult and children choirs and to the reverence of our liturgies in the gymatorium.


Reblog of Triptych Design from Summer 2012

Triptychs ("three folds") are probably known these days for picture frames and cards or brochures, but their earliest use in art was as altarpieces.  When closed, two panels are visible and when opened, the three interior panels are seen. This permits the art in the sanctuary to reflect the changing liturgical season and to celebrate liturgies with varying degrees of solemnity. Since liturgical art was used as a primary teaching tool about the life of Christ, the saints and Scripture, the use of a triptych allowed the church to display more sacred art in a smaller space throughout the year.


Altar of Reservation with Triptych
Reredos with closed triptych. Both altars shown.
Triptych on Altar of Reservation
Triptych doors opened displaying three additional decorative panels. The Main Altar is not shown.


Organ Innards

Ever wonder what the inside of our pipe organ looks like?

It puts me in mind of an old Fleischer cartoon with Grampy pulling all kinds of levers and pulleys to perform some kind of automated miracle like cleaning  the whole house or cooking dinner.

There are also quite a number of initials carved on its wood beams, many from the early 1970's - no comment.


Polishing Brass

BrasstarnishI unexpectedly learned a lot about polishing brass over the last several weeks. Having decided to try and remove some of the tarnish from the beautiful candlesticks and altar cross we acquired from the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Philadelphia, I researched how to clean and polish brass on the Internet. There are everything from commercial products to home made formulas - at this point I have tried just about all of them. It is important to use the right polish and technique, but nothing substitutes for elbow grease. The dogs evacuated the kitchen when I started boiling a soupy mixture of water, vinegar, salt and dishwashing detergent in an oven roasting pan one night. (It's one of the methods to strip lacquer from brass and it worked very well.)

So far, our new brass altar cross, four brass candlesticks and one of the brass sanctuary lamps have been cleaned and polished. I'll post up some pictures of the new shiny appointments soon, and they will be available for viewing after the masses in the gymatorium and for memorials in the new church.


Rose Window

The Rose Window at St. Francis Church is so intricate and embedded in a limestone tracery its removal would be quite difficult. Beyer Studio has proposed to fabricate a new window, 96 inches in diameter for Holy Cross.


The new window is modelled on the rose window at St. Francis and includes several petals which depict the instruments of the Passion of Christ.