"And I say to you, that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it." - Matthew 16:18

Pastor's Message

Fr. Cole's Message for October 17, 2021

St. Peter Parish Family,

A very special Thank You to Rev. Martin Gallagher, David Martin, and Rob Pacillo and the Harmonia Schola, for lifting our hearts in praise and worship at our Sung Latin Mass this past Monday, October 4. The fantastic attendance I think surprised us all, thank you to all who came!

Thank you also to All-Ways Carpet Cleaning for all your work at our St. Bernard site. The two front classrooms in the school building, both sets of stairs in the front vestibule, and basement church hall were cleaned in addition to the vestibule tile floor. Faith Formation classes at our St. Bernard site begin this weekend, October 24. If you have school age children and have not yet begun Faith Formation by attending one of our Start-Up Meetings, our next meeting will take place Tuesday, October 19 at 6:00pm.

This weekend our parish community embraces
Devon Amato who is being accepted into the Order of Catechumens at our 8:00am Mass on Sunday, October 17. For the past several months, Devon and I have been informally exploring the tenets of Catholicism and he is now ready to take the next step beginning a period of more formalized study. The Introduction to the Rite of Acceptance states, “The rite that is called the rite of acceptance into the order of catechumens is of the utmost importance. Assembling publicly for the first time, the candidates who have completed the period of the precatechumenate declare their intention to the Church and the Church in turn accepts them as persons who intend to become its members. God showers his grace on the candidates, since the celebration manifests their desire publicly and marks their reception and first consecration by the Church.” Every one of us are called to be evangelizers and build up the Body of Christ, the Church. If you or anyone you know is interested in learning more about the Catholic Faith, please do not hesitate to contact me!

Our school can really use some help with before and after school childcare. Hours are 7am-8:30am and 3:15pm- 6:00pm, although most students leave by 5:15pm. Any shift any day of the week would be a huge help. If you are interested, please call our school office at 716-754-4470.

Lastly, just as a friendly reminder, all parishioners through- out the diocese have been asked to wear masks when coming, going, and for the communion procession. While we all have different opinions on this divisive topic, let us in charity do what is being asked of us.

In Christ’s Peace,
Fr. Cole

Fr. Cole's Message for October 3, 2021

St. Peter Parish Family,

Very special congratulations to our St. Bernard Music Director, Alexis Marie, on her recent promotion at her full-time job. Unfortunately, as it was announced at our St. Bernard site, this means she will be stepping away from her position with us as music director. Thank you so much Alexis for lifting our hears in praise and worship to Almighty God. Your warm voice will be tremendously missed and we wish you all the best with your new position. Our music director from our St. Peter site, Brad Wingert, will be filling the position.

Site work at both of our worship sites is continuing full steam ahead! Thank you to Scrufari Construction for fixing the collapsed ceiling in our St. Bernard Church hall. The cleaned up and brightened space completely changes the feel of the space. The front of the school building at St. Bernard’s has also underwent a cleaning which will be utilized once again for Faith Formation. At our St. Peter site one quarter of the exterior restoration is nearing completion. It is a slow and detailed process for our 1840’s rectory, but will preserve it for years to come!

We have a prayerful treat coming up on October 11 at 7:00pm at our St. Peter site. As you will see in this bulletin we will be welcoming the Harmonia Chamber Schola as we offer a Sung Latin Mass in the Ordinary Form using a chant setting from composer Hans Leo Hassler (1564-1612). In addition to beautiful chant, Mass will be prayed in the ancient language of Latin which continues to be the language of the Church, and will be offered in the liturgical direction of ad orientem, a posture anticipating the return of Christ. Rev. Martin Gallagher, the pastor of Blessed Sacrament Parish in Tonawanda, will be the celebrant.

Lastly, thank you all for your attention to the new diocesan mask mandate that I announced last week. I am watching the directives issued by other institutions such as Sheas, Kleinhans, and Highmark Stadium, and they all have a mask policy in place. Once again, we only ask that you wear masks when coming, going, and for Communion. While we all have our different opinions, let us remember the words of the wise St. Augustine,
“In all things charity.”

In Christ’s Peace,
Fr. Cole

Fr. Cole's Message for September 19, 2021

St. Peter Parish Family,

I think it goes without saying that not only the Diocese of Buffalo, but the entire Church needs to be constantly attentive to the Holy Spirit in working toward genuine renewal. As we are all well aware, scandals and abuses have caused a tremendous amount of pain that only the Divine Physician can heal. You may have heard that the Diocese of Buffalo recently embarked on a concentrated effort to bring healing and wholeness that has become known as the Road to Renewal. On August 29th over 400 people gathered at the Fatima Shrine for a Mass led by Bishop Fisher. Each diocesan parish was asked to send two representatives who returned with the insert you will find in this bulletin and the prayer cards that will be prayed after Masses this weekend. They were also asked to bring a rope tied with five knots representing Abuse, Mistrust, Indifference, Lack of Faith, and Isolation. These ropes were then blessed and are asked to be displayed in each parish. Beginning today and for the next four weeks, we will be featuring a knot prayer in the bulletin that was prayed over each knot. Through the intercession of Our Lady, Undoer of Knots, we hope as a diocese that we can one day undo these knots and move forward in the Spirit.

Next weekend, September 25/26, we will be taking up our annual Catholic Education Collection. An envelope has been included in your packet or you can give from our website homepage by clicking on “Online Giving” and, using the drop down under Diocesan Collections, select Catholic Education. 100% of what is collected stays here to help us offset school related costs. This year we are blessed to have 180 students enrolled in our Pre-K-8 Grade program. The life and energy that all of these young people bring to our parish is remarkable and how blessed we are to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with them! I cannot thank you enough for your support!

Anxious, Depressed, Struggling with an Illness, Upcoming Surgery, Harboring Anger? A special Mass with the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick will be celebrated this Wednesday, September 22nd at 7:00pm at our St. Peter site for healing of mind, body, and spirit. Confessions will be offered from 6:00-6:45pm. "Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you, He shall never permit the righteous to be moved." Psalm 55:22

Beginning October 20th I will be hosting a five week study on the Mass Wednesday evenings from 6:30-7:30pm. I personally invite you to order and read Dr. Edward Sri’s phenomenal book A Biblical Walk Through the Mass and, if you would like, attend a Wednesday night session to unpack and discuss the content. Limited copies of the book are available at the Rectory for $15.00 or you can order the book online from Amazon or Ascension Press.

In Christ’s Peace,
Fr. Cole

Fr. Cole's Message for September 5, 2021

St. Peter Parish Family,

I don’t know about you, but I am glad that September is here. My hope is that you had a relaxing and refreshing summer and were able to catch up with friends and family. There is so much to do in WNY and returning this summer was the Garden Fest, Art Fest, and concerts at Artpark which I was sure to take advantage of. Yet Ecclesiastes reminds us, “There is a time for everything,” and getting back to school and our work routines help us to lead a balanced and productive life. Enough rest, we have the Kingdom of God to build!

This coming Wednesday, September 8th we welcome our SPS students back. Thanks to our maintenance team, John, Dean, and Tori, our building sparkles! Teachers have returned last week to decorate their classrooms and bulletin boards and the tradition of the Blessing of Backpacks was revived again this year and celebrated this past Thursday, September 2nd.

As I worked on the Fall liturgical schedule, it is with sadness that we have to say goodbye to the Barnabites for weekend assistance due to staffing needs at the shrine. We are most grateful for all their assistance and are blessed to have them, and a national shrine, in our backyard! Returning this Fall with the academic year are the Vincentian Fathers who have had a long-standing relationship with St. Peters. I also thank my diocesan brothers who will be helping us as well. The Church is a community and I thank our priests and everything that all of you do to further the reign of God here in Lewiston & Youngstown!

Speaking of sparkling, you may have noticed that both of our worship sites are shining a bit brighter. Thank you to Dan Pearce Painting for power washing the east and west walls of the church at our St. Peter site, St. Bernard’s church and rectory, and for staining the St. Bernard handicap ramp!

With the school year reeving up, so is our newly expanded and enhanced Faith Formation Program. Registration is currently under way and can be done from our website under the ‘Faith Formation’ tab. Parents (young disciples are also welcome) are asked to attend one of our three start-up meetings that will be held:

Friday, September 17th 6:00-7:00 PM Sunday, September 19th 2:00-3:00 PM Wednesday, September 22nd 6:00-7:00 PM

So happy to be kicking back into high gear! In Christ’s Peace,
Fr. Cole