CONSTRUCTION CONE THROWN AT BLESSED MOTHER STATUE MISSES AND BREAKS CHURCH WINDOW

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 16, 2024

The Diocese of Brooklyn is announcing a blatant act of vandalism which occurred last Friday night, February 9, 2024, at St. Rita’s Church in Long Island City, Queens.

At about 8:45 p.m. the pastor, Father Jose Carlos da Silva, who was in the rectory, heard something smash in the church. Father da Silva saw a man in front of the chapel, who ran away after he called out to him from a window. There was a prayer group meeting inside the church at the time. No one was injured.

A stained-glass window was broken. A construction cone was thrown at a statue of the Blessed Mother which stands in front of the window. There was no damage to that statue. 

“It was very disturbing and unsettling to hear breaking glass as a prayer group was gathered in the church.  Luckily, no one was injured, and the suspect did not try to come in. I believe the orange construction cone that was thrown was intended to hit the Blessed Mother statue, but the vandal missed. Instead, it hit one of our original stained-glass windows behind it. This is a hate crime against the Catholic Church, and the perpetrator must understand that he has caused pain for the entire parish community of St. Rita’s,” said Father Jose Carlos da Silva, the parish pastor.

The cost of the damage to the 60-year-old-stained glass window is estimated at $10,000. The window was broken on the 11th street side of the church near the rectory entrance. Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).

VIMEO Linkhttps://vimeo.com/913699351

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The broken window at St. Rita’s which was smashed by a vandal who threw a construction cone.
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The construction cone found at the side of the church which was thrown and smashed the window.

BISHOP BRENNAN CELEBRATES LUNAR NEW YEAR WITH CHINESE CATHOLICS

For Immediate Release: February 15, 2024

Bishop Robert Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn, led a bi-lingual Mass (English and Chinese) Sunday, February 11, 2024, in honor of the Lunar New Year at St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church, in Flushing, Queens. This is the Year of the Dragon and symbolizes strength, power, good fortune, and success.

At the conclusion of the Mass, an Ancestors Veneration Ritual ceremony took place. It is a New Year’s tradition in which Chinese people give thanks to God and their ancestors. The rituals include nine bows to God, the offering of fruits, flowers and incense, and the exchange of New Year greetings among the faithful.

The celebration of the Lunar New Year featured cultural singing, dancing, and a special martial arts performance.

“We would be lost if we didn’t have you and we didn’t have all the gifts and the richness of the Chinese culture that you bring,” preached Bishop Brennan.

Father Vincentius Do is the Pastor of St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church and serves as head of the Chinese Apostolate for the Diocese of Brooklyn.

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Bishop Brennan celebrating Chinese Lunar New Year at St. Michael’s in Flushing.
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At the conclusion of the Mass, Bishop Brennan helped to distribute red envelopes to the faithful in attendance.
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Bishop Brennan joined in the New Year celebration that followed in the parish hall after Mass.
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Bishop Robert Brennan and some of the Chinese Catholics who attended the special Lunar New Year Mass and reception.

BISHOP ROBERT BRENNAN ON ASH WEDNESDAY: “BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE LOVED BY GOD”

For Immediate Release: February 14, 2024

Bishop Robert J. Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn, celebrated Mass and distributed ashes today at the Noon Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of St. James in Downtown Brooklyn. 

“During the season of Lent, we focus in on spending this extra time with God, whether it be through your own Lenten practices or with this pilgrimage of faith, to allow God to speak to us. ‘Repent and Believe in the Good News,’ are words we hear as we receive our ashes. Believe that you are loved by God, believe that God wants your heart, and believe that the Lord is reaching out to you,” said Bishop Robert Brennan during his homily.

Today also marked the start of the 2024 Diocesan Lenten Pilgrimage in Brooklyn and Queens, where the faithful will have the opportunity to visit different churches over the next 40 days. Individual parishes will offer opportunities for Mass, prayer, and reflection during these visits. The complete schedule can be found online at lent.diobrook.org.

Ash Wednesday begins the Christian observance of the season of Lent. As is customary, the ashes used on Ash Wednesday are made by burning the blessed palms distributed the prior year on Palm Sunday. Lent ends with the celebration of the Sacred Triduum, the three holiest days of the year: Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Easter Vigil. Easter Sunday will be celebrated this year on March 31.

Vimeohttps://vimeo.com/913087064

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Bishop Robert Brennan distributing ashes today at the Cathedral Basilica of St. James in Downtown Brooklyn.
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Bishop Robert Brennan on Ash Wednesday, 2024, distributing ashes today at the Cathedral Basilica of St. James in Downtown Brooklyn.

Vimeo and photos are courtesy of John Quaglione/DeSales Media.

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BISHOP BRENNAN VISITS CATHOLIC ACADEMY IN BUSHWICK TO START CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK

Bishop Robert J. Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn, led a special Mass in honor of the start of Catholic Schools Week this morning at St. Brigid Roman Catholic Church, located in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn.

Bishop Brennan joined students, faculty, and families of St. Brigid-St. Francis Cabrini Catholic Academy at the Mass. Following the Mass, Bishop Brennan visited the academy for the ribbon cutting ceremony and blessed the recently renovated Kindergarten classroom. The school is working to renovate all the classrooms by September.

In his Homily, Bishop Brennan stated, “Our schools teach everything that you can learn in any other school, math, social studies, and language arts. But we also learn the truth of who we are, and the truth of who God is. We learn what it means to be a child of God who loves us very, very much. We learn to see how God blesses us in our lives to discover our talents and abilities, to share with one another.”

Since 1974, National Catholic Schools Week begins annually on the last Sunday of January and is a week dedicated to celebrating Catholic education. The theme this year for National Catholic Schools Week is “Catholic Schools: United in Faith and Community.”

This year marks the 50th Anniversary of National Catholic Schools Week. This week, Bishop Brennan is scheduled to visit schools throughout Brooklyn and Queens for a chance to meet students and faculty and catch a glimpse of the incredible education being offered in the Diocese each and every day.

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Bishop Brennan gives a Homily at the opening Mass for Catholic Schools Week at St. Brigid’s.
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Students from St. Brigid-St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Academy attended Mass as a school community to kick-off Catholic Schools Week.
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After Mass, Bishop Brennan greeted and blessed many who attended the special Mass dedicated to Catholic Schools Week.
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Bishop Robert Brennan visited and blessed the newly renovated Kindergarten classroom at St. Brigid-St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Academy.

Announcement of Death – Reverend James J.M. Reynolds

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Most Reverend Robert J. Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn, regrets to inform you of the death of Reverend James J.M. Reynolds, a retired priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn. Father Reynolds was born on February 15, 1956 in New York, was ordained to the Priesthood on June 30, 1984 and died Friday, January 12, 2024.

Father Reynolds served the Diocese of Brooklyn as Parochial Vicar of the Parishes of Saint Helen (Howard Beach), Saint Patrick (Brooklyn), Saint Matthias (Ridgewood), Holy Child Jesus (Richmond Hill), Saint Brendan (Brooklyn), Our Lady of Mercy (Forest Hills), and Saint Thomas Aquinas (Flatlands). He was also in residence at Bishop Mugavero Residence (Douglaston), Saint Virgilius (Broad Channel), and Our Lady of the Snows (Floral Park).

The arrangements are as follows:

WAKE: Immaculate Conception Center
7200 Douglaston Parkway
Douglaston, New York 11362
Tel: (718) 229-8001

Tuesday, January 16, 2024
2:00 PM – 5:00 PM
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Wednesday, January 17, 2024
9:00 AM – 10:00 AM

FUNERAL MASS: Immaculate Conception Center

Wednesday, January 17, 2024, 11:00 AM
7200 Douglaston Parkway
Douglaston, New York 11362

BURIAL: Saint Charles Cemetery, Farmingdale, New York

Please pray for the repose of his soul and for the consolation of his family and friends. May he rest in the peace of Christ, the Risen Lord.

If you wish to send condolences, please mail to his brother, Mr. Stephen Reynolds, 385 Lathrop Avenue, Staten Island, New York 10302.

Reverend Monsignor Steven J. Aguggia, J.C.L.
Chancellor

Announcement of Death – Peter A. Mahoney

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Most Reverend Robert J. Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn, regrets to inform you of the death of Peter A. Mahoney, who died on Friday, January 12, 2024. All arrangements and burial are private. If you have any questions concerning the arrangements, please contact the Office of the Chancellor.

Please pray for the repose of his soul and for the consolation of his family and friends. May he rest in the peace of Christ, the Risen Lord. If you wish to send condolences, please mail to his friend, Mr. Gregory T. Cerchione, 150
Broadway, 23rd Floor, New York, NY 10038.

Reverend Monsignor Steven J. Aguggia, J.C.L.
Chancellor and Vicar for Canonical Affairs

Announcement of Death – Reverend Monsignor John F. Casey

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Most Reverend Robert J. Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn, regrets to inform you of the death of Reverend Monsignor John F. Casey, a retired priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn. Monsignor Casey was born on December 31, 1928, was ordained to the Priesthood on May 29, 1954 and died Wednesday, December 13, 2023.

Monsignor Casey served the Diocese of Brooklyn as Pastor of the Parishes of Incarnation (Queens Village), Sacred Heart (Bayside) and Holy Rosary (Brooklyn). He also served as Temporary Administrator of the Parishes of Saint Nicholas Tolentine (Jamaica) and Sacred Heart (Cambria Heights); and as Parochial Vicar at the Parish of Saint Patrick (Long Island City). Monsignor Casey was also a member of the Diocesan Presbyteral Council, Director of the Diocesan Black and Indian Mission, and Chairman of the Diocesan Assignment Policy Committee. He also served as Principal at the Cathedral Preparatory Seminary.

In 1982, Monsignor Casey was named Prelate of Honor.

The arrangements are as follows:

WAKE: Monday, December 18, 2023 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Immaculate Conception Center 7200 Douglaston Parkway Douglaston, New York 11362

VIGIL: Monday, December 18, 2023 7:00 PM

Immaculate Conception Center 7200 Douglaston Parkway Douglaston, New York 11362

FUNERAL: Tuesday, December 19, 2023 10:30 AM (Please note earlier time)

Immaculate Conception Center 7200 Douglaston Parkway Douglaston, New York 11362 

BURIAL: Holy Cross Cemetery Brooklyn, New York

Monsignor Casey was a member of the Priests’ Purgatorial Society. Please pray for the repose of his soul and for the consolation of his family and friends. May he rest in the peace of Christ, the Risen Lord. If you wish to send condolences, please mail to his brother Mr. Donald Casey, 34 Walsh Drive, Mahwah, New Jersey 07430.

Reverend Monsignor Steven J. Aguggia, J.C.L. Chancellor and Vicar for Canonical Affairs

Announcement of Death – Reverend Monsignor Theophilus A. Joseph

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Most Reverend Robert J. Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn, regrets to inform you of the death of Reverend Monsignor Theophilus A. Joseph, a retired priest of the Archdiocese of Castries, Saint Lucia who served in the Diocese of Brooklyn. Monsignor Joseph was born on March 22, 1948, was ordained to the Priesthood on May 26, 1974, and died Thursday, November 16, 2023.

Monsignor Joseph served the Diocese of Brooklyn as Parochial Vicar of the Parish of Saint Ephrem (Brooklyn).

The arrangements are as follows:

WAKE: Sunday, November 19, 2023 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Saint Ephrem R.C. Church

929 Bay Ridge Parkway Brooklyn, New York 11228 Tel: (718) 833-1010

VIGIL MASS: Sunday, November 19, 2023 7:00 PM

Saint Ephrem R.C. Church 929 Bay Ridge Parkway Brooklyn, New York 11228

FUNERAL MASS: Monday, November 20, 2023 11:00 AM

Saint Ephrem R.C. Church 929 Bay Ridge Parkway Brooklyn, NY 11228

INTERMENT: Saint Lucia

Please pray for the repose of his soul and for the consolation of his family and friends. May he rest in the peace of Christ, the Risen Lord. If you wish to send condolences, please mail to Very Reverend Robert B. Adamo, C/O Saint Ephrem R.C. Church, 929 Bay Ridge Parkway, Brooklyn, New York 11228.

Reverend Monsignor Steven J. Aguggia, J.C.L. Chancellor

BISHOP BRENNAN MARKS ALL SOULS’ DAY AT HOLY CROSS CEMETERY, BLESSES MEMORIAL HONORING WAR HEROES

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 2, 2023

BISHOP BRENNAN MARKS ALL SOULS’ DAY AT HOLY CROSS CEMETERY, BLESSES MEMORIAL HONORING VETERANS

Bishop Robert Brennan of the Diocese of Brooklyn celebrated All Souls’ Day Mass this morning in The Chapel of the Resurrection at Holy Cross Cemetery, located at 3620 Tilden Avenue in the East Flatbush section of Brooklyn.

Immediately following the Mass, Bishop Brennan blessed a new memorial near the entrance of the cemetery which honors all Medal of Honor recipients buried on the sacred grounds. The memorial stone lists 18 Veterans who served in the U.S. military from the Civil War through the Spanish-American War.

VIMEO: https://vimeo.com/880634945

The photos and video are courtesy of DeSales Media.

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Bishop Robert Brennan offered Mass on All Souls’ Day at Holy Cross Cemetery.
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Bishop Brennan blessed a new monument at Holy Cross Cemetery on All Souls’ Day, honoring 18 Veterans buried on these sacred grounds who were awarded the Medal of Honor from the Civil War to the Spanish-American War.
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Bishop Brennan pictured with Michael Cusack of Bay Ridge who researched the Medal of Honor recipients, and Monsignor Michael Reid, the Chief Operating Officer of Catholic Cemeteries for the Diocese of Brooklyn.

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BISHOP BRENNAN CELEBRATES CHURCH’S MILESTONE ANNIVERSARY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 22, 2023

BISHOP BRENNAN CELEBRATES CHURCH’S MILESTONE ANNIVERSARY

Bishop Robert Brennan of the Diocese of Brooklyn celebrated a special Mass this morning marking the 125th Anniversary of St. Francis of Assisi-St. Blaise Catholic Church, located in the Prospect-Lefferts Gardens section of Brooklyn.

“We celebrate in this anniversary, these 125 years, the goodness, the greatness of God, who has shown Himself amazingly in this part of Brooklyn. We come here just like the generations before us praying for peace, praying for justice, and praying for respect for the dignity of every single person create in God’s own image,” said Bishop Robert Brennan.

“We are living one of those milestones in the history of St. Francis of Assisi–St. Blaise Parish. We will go into the future together, meeting the new challenges, giving to God everything we have and everything we are, and discovering that He has given to us,” continued Bishop Brennan.

In his Homily, Bishop Brennan also reflected on the parish’s special relationship with the former pastor, Monsignor Paul Jervis, who passed away on September 5, 2023.  Monsignor Jervis was the Diocesan Postulator of the Cause of the Beatification and Canonization of the Servant of God, Monsignor Bernard John Quinn.

Monsignor Quinn, a Brooklyn priest, established the first Black Catholic Church in Brooklyn consecrated to St. Peter Claver and fought against the evils of racial discrimination. He worked tirelessly to defend the rights and equality of all.

The first parish Mass was celebrated on January 16, 1898, in a house on Maple Street. The current Church building was dedicated on April 25, 1915. The parish of St. Blaise merged with St. Francis of Assisi in the spring of 1980.

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VIMEO: https://vimeo.com/876929841

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St. Francis of Assisi – St. Blaise 125th Anniversary Mass.
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Bishop Brennan during the consecration of the Eucharist during the 125th Anniversary Mass of St. Francis of Assisi – St. Blaise.
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Bishop Brennan greeting parishioners following the 125th Anniversary Mass at St. Francis of Assisi – St. Blaise in Brooklyn.