Mid-Week Message from Fr. Gerard - May 6, 2021

Confessions (3:00 -- 3:45 P.M.) are Saturday in the Garden of the Religious Education Center.

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

Daily Mass at 8 A.M.: M, TU, W (Fr. Gerard, Presider), TH & F (Msgr. Bill, Presider) (no Saturday Mass)

Video of Mass https://www.ourladyofrefuge.org From the homepage, select “Videos”

Masks are required for all over the age of 3 on parish grounds.


Greetings parishioners,


Hope you are all keeping well, as Fr. Bill and I are here in the rectory.


On Friday we celebrate a special milestone in the life of one of our esteemed parishioners, Johanna Raab, who celebrates her 95th Birthday. For those of you who know Johanna, I reckon you are inspired by her like I am. I think she is the healthiest 95 year-old ever! She has been a parishioner here in OLR for 63 years, a life time, and also a resident in her home on Greenbrier Street for the same number of years.


Johanna has a great outlook on life and has a common-sense approach to everything. She is a woman of unbelievable wisdom and a joy to have a conversation with.


When I arrived here in OLR in Sept 2018, she was the first to open her home to me and invite me in. Since then, we have built up a wonderful friendship. She is a woman of great faith and is very disciplined in everything she does. Her weekly schedule is followed like clockwork, from her very early exercises to her entire day planned every day. Joanna is an all-round person; she can take on any challenge and completes it with passion .


Her fashion style is amazing and, every time you meet her, she is dressed like the Queen.


She is a woman of great service to the church. She is the sacristan for the weekday Masses; she cleans all the priests’ vestments; she is a minister of the Eucharist; she donates to the parish through Faith Direct; she helps in any way she can for the Parish. She often cooks chicken soup for us priests and bakes her famous cheesecake. She is the dog sitter for my dogs who she adores as they adore her. So, a very active lady and an inspiration to so many.


Johanna is from Germany and she has two brothers living there, and she talks to them a lot on the phone. I, on a few occasions, did FaceTime with them and it was so beautiful to see them talking to one another in German.


Her husband Fred predeceased her 19 years ago and sadly this past summer her only child Bernie died of Covid complications. This has been devastating for her. She never expected to bury her son before herself; such is life.


With her 95th on Friday and her first Mother’s Day this Sunday without her son, I am reaching out to all of you parishioners to maybe send her a card of good wishes. Mail them to the rectory; I will personally give them to her. If you would like to be with her in person on Sunday, she attends the 8 A.M. Mass.


This Sunday I intend to present her a bouquet of flowers in celebration of her birthday and Mother’s Day. Please attend the 8 A.M. Mass and let’s celebrate her beautiful presence here at OLR.


Thank you once again for your loyalty to this awesome parish Our Lady of Refuge.



Fr. Gerard


Please remember in your prayers Robert DeCoudres, Danny Ronay, and Matteo Diaz.


Mass Procedures: Our church has re-opened, but we have Federal, State, County, City and Archdiocesan regulations to follow. Please follow the directions of the ushers to maximize capacity, social distancing, and comfort. The easing of some restrictions has not removed the requirements to wear a mask and continue social distancing.


Mothers’ Day (May 9) Novena envelopes and cards are available. Please return completed envelopes to the collection or the church office as soon as possible.


Not available: Currently the church is not open for visitation. Candles for the shrines are not available.


Funds for Msgr. Bill’s restroom: If you would like to donate either in Faith Direct or by check, please mention your donation is for Msgr. Bill’s restroom upgrade. His restroom and shower unit are in a dreadful state and the floor will also need to be replaced. We want the best for Msgr. Bill. Reconstruction will take place while he is on vacation.


Spring Opportunity Raffle -- Thank You all for your beautiful support of our school's Spring Opportunity Raffle. The drawing takes place on Friday, May 7 at 1 P.M. Thank you again for your continued support and prayers. -- Mr. Green  (Join Zoom Meeting

https://la-archdiocese.zoom.us/j/94994372582  Meeting ID: 949 9437 2582)


Virtual Retreat: What is it like to walk in God’s presence? It feels like sanctified peace. A peace within our reach. World renowned spiritual writer, Father Jacques Philippe, is back for another retreat! He will be teaching the simple ways we can place ourselves in God’s loving presence. Let us renew our interior life with 5 moving conferences from Father Jacques Philippe, prayer resources from the Carmelite Sisters, and small group sharing. Discover the joy of His presence. Sponsored by the Sacred Heart Retreat House in Alhambra, May 14-16. Cost is $49.99. The link below directs you to description of the event and registration.https://sacredheartretreathouse.com/


Baptisms are held once a month on Saturday at 10:00 A.M. Health protocols are in place to keep everyone as safe as possible. Parents and Godparents are required to attend a pre-baptism class online. Call the Religious Ed office with any questions regarding registration.  (562) 597-3102


Bequests: Please consider including Our Lady of Refuge Parish and School in your estate plan. Our correct legal title is: The Roman Catholic Archbishop of Los Angeles, A Corporation Sole for the sole benefit of: (Our Lady of Refuge Parish and/or School) For further information, please contact Karen Dunphy at 213-637-7512 www.ADLALegacy.org


Where to get vaccinated for Covid-19: Effective April 15, people 16 and over are eligible for vaccinations and can make appointments at the locations listed below.

The City of Long Beach http://www.longbeach.gov/health/diseases-and-condition/information-on/coronavirus/vaxlb/

Primary Care Providers

CVS www.cvs.com/immunizations/covid-19-vaccine or 800-746-7287

Ralphs www.ralphs.com/covidvaccine 

Rite Aid www.riteaid.com/pharmacy/covid-qualifier

Walgreens www.walgreens.com/schedulevaccine.

Long Beach Memorial https://mymemorialcarecovid.memorialcare.org/MyChart/covid19#

Orange County https://www.othena.com/

Southern California Kaiser 866-454-8855 or https://mydoctor.kaiserpermanente.org/covid-19/covid-19-vaccine


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 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 your account) or the app Connect – our Church Community, ACS Technology Group (Realm Connect)