Mid-Week Message from Fr. Gerard - November 11, 2020

Confessions are Saturday 3 – 3:45 P.M. in the Garden of the School of Religious Education

Weekend Masses: SA 4:00 P.M., SU 8:00 A.M., SU 10 A.M.

Daily Mass: 8 A.M. (M, Tu, W)


Greetings parishioners,


Hope you are all keeping warm in this cool spell of weather. On Tuesday I noticed from my rooms upstairs in the rectory that Mt. Baldy in the San Gabriel Mountains was snow-capped, a sign winter is here.


Last Sunday evening with the strong gusty winds, both large tents were blown over. It was a sorry sight to see that night, but I gave thanks no one was hurt. Tents are fragile in the midst of strong winds.


On Monday morning we still celebrated Mass at 8 A.M. even in the midst of the winds’ destruction. I was so impressed when so many hands came on deck to help and tidy up the mess. Furthermore, a group of volunteers got together as a salvage team and repaired one tent with the hope of repairing the other tent after we secure standard poles. Kudos to the following for your impressive teamwork: Steve Flint, Jerry Mendoza, Danny Domingo, Principal Donnie Green, Phat To, OLR School faculty, Diego Gallegos, Gerry Boyarski, Cathy Hoover, and Johanna Rabb.


Winter brings a mixture of weather patterns. For those of you attending Mass, please wear warm clothes. As pastor, it is a joy witnessing the parishioners’ appreciation at every Mass; despite the winds, rain, and cold weather you are all still there to celebrate and participate in Holy Mass. God Bless you all.


On Thursday this week I am meeting with my priest support group to pray, share our story, and have a meal together. Please pray for our group as we pray for you.


On the Sunday morning before Thanksgiving (November 22) we are organizing a food drive-through; tables will be set up to drop off your food for the poor. In next Sunday’s message I will list the foods to gift. I am also looking for volunteers to help me with the drive-through; please call the rectory (562-498-6641). Due to this pandemic, many have lost their jobs; many more are hungry. Let us give from our hearts for this worthy cause.


Thank you so much for supporting your parish in so many ways. I am so grateful to you all. Please read the attached notice on the state of the finances in our parish; it is a reality in every parish community that donations have dropped drastically, while many of the expenses have stayed the same. Please pray for your parish community; we are in this together as a community in unity of Jesus Christ.


Prayers for all our homebound, our seniors, those in rest homes, those sad or lonely. You are not alone; the Lord is with you. Amen.



Fr. Gerard


OLR Church Financial Report: We know that everyone is suffering the effects of COVID on their lives. Like many families, OLR Church has experienced the financial effect of the shutdown. The Church closure and limited Mass attendance have reduced offertory donations. Compared to last year, our July through September Net Income has declined 73%. Weekly offertory donations are down 45%, while the basic cost of operation continues.  If you could contribute a little extra toward keeping the doors open and the lights on, it would be much appreciated. Attached to this message is a document titled OLR Financial Status Fiscal Year 2021. It is provided for those who may want to see more detail, e.g., a comparison of this year versus last for the first three months of the church year (July – September). The report reflects actual cash transactions: deposits made and expenses paid. Outstanding invoices are not included.


Veterans Day (originally known as Armistice Day) honors all U.S. military veterans, that is, persons who have served in the United States Armed Forces, and marks the anniversary of the end of World War I. Major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when the Armistice with Germany went into effect. Today let us celebrate the service of our retired enlisted men and women.


Please remember in your prayers: Barbara Schmidt and Ruben Olmos.


Mark your calendars:

Sunday, November 22                                    Food Collection Drive-through

Thursday, November 26         9:30 A.M.        Thanksgiving Mass

Sunday, November 29                                    First Sunday of Advent


OLR Church Office (562) 498-6641    9:30 A.M. -- 2 P.M. (M-F)

5195 Stearns Street, Long Beach, CA 90815-2901

OLR website -- https://www.ourladyofrefuge.org

Betty Guevara, Parish Secretary -- betty@start.olrs.org

Shirl Giacomi, Director of Religious Education -- dre@start.olrs.org

(562) 597-3102           9 A.M. -- 3 P.M. (M-F)

Donnie Green, OLRS Interim Principal -- principal@start.olrs.org

OLR Catholic School -- (562) 597-0819     7:30 A.M. -- 3 P.M. (M-TH), 7:30 A.M. -- 1 P.M. (F)

5210 E. Los Coyotes Diagonal, Long Beach, CA  90815

Team Refuge -- Holly Cavallaro, Coordinator (562) 822-9191

Faith Direct -- https://membership.faithdirect.net/enroll/CA966  or the app Faith Direct – eGiving for Churches. To securely make a one-time gift to Our Lady of Refuge Catholic Church, text a dollar amount to (562) 414-6831.

Realm -- https://onrealm.org (to access to your account) or the app Connect – our Church Community, ACS Technology Group (Realm Connect)