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Some Things to Know

Salus Infirmorum   Father Harry Burke, Monsignor Patrick Carney, Father Edwin Cipot, Monsignor Charles Coen, Father Richard Dillon, Father Robert Dunn, Father John Fanning, Monsignor John Farley, Monsignor John Ferry, Monsignor William Foley, Father Edmundo Gomez, Monsignor Leslie Ivers, Bishop John Jenik, Father Michael Keane, Monsignor Walter Kenny, Father Andrew Kurzyna, Monsignor John Meehan, Monsignor Robert McCabe, Father Damian O’Connell SJ, Father Edward O’Neill, Father Philip Quealy, Father Eric Rapaglia, Monsignor John Sullivan, Monsignor Desmond Vella, Father Andrew Walsh, Bishop Gerald Walsh, Monsignor Edward Weber

Requiescat in Pace   Father Francis J. Gasparik OFM Cap

Building Maintenance and Winter Preparation   With the cold weather soon approaching, it is always helpful to ensure that all necessary and preparatory steps have been taken to protect parish buildings and property from the elements.  In the past, the archdiocese experienced over $12 million in property losses, a significant amount of which was the result of weather-related damage.  Now is the time to work closely with your maintenance manager before winter sets in to get your property and buildings in shape to avoid an emergency.  There is one more maintenance presentation to be held on Tuesday, November 28 at Sacred Heart in Monroe.  Refer to the memo Winter Building Maintenance in the Updates section of the combined mailing.

Committee on Divine Worship Newsletter for October is included in this month’s combined mailing.  [Updates: CDW Newsletter]

No One to Answered the Parish Telephone?   With modern technology today, urgent contact with a priest should be easily facilitated, especially whenever there is no secretary at the parish office.  Different churches use various systems, such as commercial answering services, a dedicated “duty priest” mobile phone, call forwarding, etc.  What should be avoided is any parish system where no priest can be contacted for several hours for a crucial matter.

Upcoming National Collections   The collection for the Retired Religious of the archdiocese will be on December 10; and the combined collection for the Catholic Communications Campaign and the Catholic University of America will be on January 7, 2024.  War Relief in Israel is at the discretion of the pastor.

Constructing, Renovating, and Restoring Places of Worship   When planning the construction, renovation, or restoration of a church or chapel, be sure to consult the archdiocesan Financial Policies and Procedures Manual (located in the Library section) for guidance regarding the proposal and approval processes for these projects. It is summarized below:

  • The vicar general must approve the concept.
  • Both the project management firm (PMF), Zubatkin and the archdiocesan office of liturgy must be contacted for all projects that involve any change, modification, or addition to a church or chapel, regardless of the cost involved.
  • At the inception of the project, any change, especially to the sanctuary, regardless of size or cost, the pastor/administrator should notify the PMF and the office of liturgy of his intent to modify a worship space during the concept stage of the project. The PMF will assist the pastor/administrator in submitting a letter of request to the vicar general.
  • In the letter, the pastor/administrator should describe the proposed change(s) and the purpose of the change(s).  After receiving approval from the vicar general, the pastor/administrator should meet with the PMF and the office of liturgy to develop the RFA and review the construction and liturgical aspects of the project.
  • Schematic designs should then be completed and presented to the office of liturgy for review and approval via an RFA. The office of liturgy is assisted by the archdiocesan liturgical art and architecture commission in this process. This submitted portfolio should include a proposed floor plan of the existing and planned space, a drawing of all relevant liturgical appointments, an elevated drawing of the sanctuary and reredos, and a description of the liturgical change(s) to the worship space and the purpose of the change(s).
  • Upon receipt of the schematic designs, the office of liturgy will typically arrange a site visit and complete a report with its observations and recommendations.
  • Once approval has been given, any subsequent modifications to the schematic designs should be resubmitted to the office of liturgy and the PMF using the same procedure. Questions may be directed to the archdiocesan director of property management or the office of liturgy.

Advent Day of Recollection for Priests will be held on Wednesday, December 6 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm at Dunwoodie and it will be led by His Eminence, Cardinal Dolan.  The day will begin with exposition, reflections, confession, and benediction.  Lunch will be available for those who request it beforehand.  More information will be forthcoming.  The Lenten day of recollection at Dunwoodie will be Thursday, February 28, 2024 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm.

Bishops for Confirmation   As we prepare for the 2024 confirmation season, know that each auxiliary bishop maintains his own schedule and wishes to be responsible for his regional area.  A master schedule is maintained at the office of the vicar general.  Bishops are the ordinary ministers of confirmation for previously baptized and catechized Catholics, whether children or adults.  See the listing in the Library section [Confirmation~Bishops].

When May a Priest Confirm?   The 1983 code of canon law states (c.882): “The ordinary minister of confirmation is a bishop; a presbyter provided with this faculty in virtue of universal law, or the special grant of a competent authority also confers this sacrament validly.”  It is often asked, “Under what conditions may a priest confirm?”  See Library section [Confirmation~When May A Priest Confirm].

Scallywags and Scoundrels   Father Martin Onyebuchi, a priest of the Diocese of Okigwe, Nigeria, is not permitted to function in any ministerial capacity in any church or facility of the Archdiocese of New York or to reside in any rectory or church-owned or sponsored building and is not to have any role in any parish or Catholic-sponsored activity within the confines of the Archdiocese of New York. At one time about fifteen years ago, Father was at Our Lady of Sorrows in White Plains. Should Father Onyebuchi contact you, notify the office of the vicar for clergy immediately at 646-794-3360 or [email protected]. Father is 70 years old. His is believed to reside in Peekskill. His immigration status is unknown.

Perpetual Adoration Chapel   Cardinal Dolan recently dedicated a perpetual adoration chapel in Manhattan, the first of its kind on the island. The chapel, located at St. Joseph in the West Village, is meant to be a 24-hour oasis of prayer for all Catholics in the archdiocese. People may register at and then come by the parish office at St. Joseph (371 Sixth Avenue) to pick up a keycard that will grant them access to the chapel whenever they want, day or night. The keycard system was developed after much thought over how to make the chapel both accessible and safe for adorers. Questions about the chapel may be directed to Nicole Bogatz at [email protected].

The Kenedy Official Catholic Directory (OCD)   Each pastor will be receiving correspondence from the OCD by email in the upcoming weeks requesting revisions for the 2024 edition of The Official Catholic Directory.  The deadline for updates is expected to be three weeks after the portal opens. Once the portal is closed and locked, no more changes can be made.  Visit to review and update your organization’s information.  If you have not received this correspondence, contact Dorothy at [email protected] or (646) 794-2908.  Inclusion in the OCD establishes an organization’s exemption from federal income tax under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis invites priests and deacons to consider enrolling in the Doctor of Ministry in Preaching cohort beginning in July 2024. This program supports those entrusted with the Church’s preaching ministry to focus more on the importance and intricacies of preaching.  It combines online study and in-person intensives.  The experience of the cohort group encourages those enrolled to be energized by this experience of community and deepening intentionality around the ministry of preaching. Contact Fr. Gregory Heille, OP ([email protected]) for more information. 

The Fifty-First Annual March for Life, the second post-Roe march will be held as planned on Friday, January 19, 2024.  Refer to the letter for more information.  [Events: Respect Life Activities].

Reconciliation Monday Dates   Observed since 2011, Advent Reconciliation Monday will be held on December 18, 2023 from 2:00 to 4:00 pm and 6:00 to 8:00 pm in the archdiocese and the Diocese of Brooklyn.  Lenten Reconciliation Monday will be observed on March 25, 2024 from 2:00 to 4:00 and 6:00 to 9:00 pm in the archdiocese and the Dioceses of Brooklyn and Rockville Centre, in every parish from the east end of Long Island to the Catskills.  Promotional material is included in this combined mailing.

Four Essential Estate Planning Documents   You do not have to be an expert to create a successful estate plan.  The department of development can help priests to use their estate plans to further the work of the Church.

  •   controls how your assets, such as money and property are distributed after your lifetime.  Without a will, the state of New York decides what happens to your assets.  Trusts allow you to make special arrangements for the management of your assets for yourself and others, such as sheltering assets, benefiting heirs or your favorite non-profits.
  •   names a person who will have the legal right to handle financial matters on your behalf if you ae unable to do so.
  • also known as a health care proxy, this document addresses all medical treatment.  It names one or more individuals you trust to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated.
  • document your wishes regarding life-sustaining care.

Contact the planned giving team at [email protected] or call 646-794-3317.

Cathedral College/Cathedral Prep Annual Alumni Association Christmas Mass on Tuesday, November 28 at 6:00 will be held at the Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, 59 East Main Street, Elmsford.  Dinner will follow at Casaletto Ristorante, 15 South Central Avenue at 7:00.  Donation for the Mass and dinner is $70 (plus $20 annual dues).  Visit any of these Internet resources at;; and [Events: Cathedral College Mass]

Office Holidays   The Catholic Center will be closed at 1:00 on Wednesday, November 22 and all day on November 23 and 24 in commemoration of Thanksgiving; and on Friday, December 8 for the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception.  You may always leave your message in the department’s voice mailbox, and it will be returned on the next business day.  To reach the chancery after hours and on weekends, call Community Answering Service at 877-582-2996.  Add this number as “Chancery Emergency” to the list of contacts in your mobile telephone.

Christmas 2023   This year, the faithful will have two distinct obligations to attend Mass: one for the IV Sunday of Advent and the other for the Nativity of the Lord (Monday). In other words, the obligation is to attend Mass twice, once for the Advent Sunday and then, for Christmas.  Also, each priest may celebrate three Masses in a 24-hour day (midnight to midnight) on December 24 and December 25.  January 1, 2024 will not be held as a day of obligation because it occurs on a Monday.  You may wish to take this into account when planning your Mass schedule and your holy day collection.

National Eucharistic Congress Indianapolis, Indiana   Make plans for the National Eucharistic Congress on July 17-21, 2024.  It is anticipated that 80,000 people from throughout the United States will be in attendance.  To learn more, visit

Pastores Dabo Vobis Video Conference XXI with Cardinal Dolan   His Eminence is offering another opportunity for us to come together before Christmas.  The date is Monday, December 11 at 2:00.  In anticipation, you may wish to email a question or topic for the cardinal to address.  Mail to [email protected].  On the day of the conference, you will be able to send a text message to 917.576.0930 in real time.  A replay recording link will be provided for those who are not able to participate.

Status Animarum   We are grateful to those pastors who will be submitting their statistics by today’s closing date.  For further assistance, contact Fred Scialabba at 646-794-3405 (office) or 347-387-2638 (mobile); or email [email protected].  Remember to save your new password since you will be needing it for your financial reports and budgets.

Trinity Automotive Services   Many may be unaware of this service which is offered through Institutional Commodity Services (ICS).  Sal Ervolino (516-658-6009) and Michael Chapman (917-748-4902) are available to the priests of the archdiocese who may need service or repair of their vehicles.  Trinity provides a hassle-free experience when acquiring both new and previously owned cars.  For purchase, lease, service, trade-in, sale, vehicles for fundraising and fleet purchases, call 516-759-7043 or email [email protected].  For more information, you may also visit their comprehensive website at and also at

National Collections for 2024   In case you missed this when it was sent in June, included with this mailing is another copy of the chart for next year’s national collections.  Communicate this to your secretary and bookkeeper and enter the dates into the parish calendar.  We Share and envelope companies have already been notified.  [Updates: National Collection Chart 2024].

Flowers for Holy Week   Palm Sunday is March 24, just four months away, so now is the time to be thinking about your needs and order from ICS as soon as you can.  Whenever we band with ICS, the savings are great.  Collectively, the parishes of the archdiocese are a huge customer. Almost more important than the price is the guaranteed timely delivery. When the ICS order reaches one million palm strips, (a very reasonable number, actually) it qualifies for priority shipping from the producer in Alamo, Texas. This means that all the palm comes in a single dedicated refrigerated shipment. Fresh palms are delivered to our parishes. Don’t delay. See the ICS info in this mailing and order before Advent commands your attention. 

Administrative Fees for Marriage Annulments   Back in 2015 in the Year of Mercy, Pope Francis asked that annulments be granted free of charge.  After that year, administrative fees were reinstated.  Beginning November 1, the fees will change again.  For a formal case, the application fee will be $100 and the administrative fee (the proceeding itself) will be $900.  For a lack of canonical form (c. 1108), the fee will be $100.  Always remember that no one is ever turned away from the tribunal because of an inability to pay.  Annulment forms may be found at or by clicking here.

Building the Kingdom   In mid-November, a copy of Building the Kingdom:  The History of the Archdiocese of New York was sent to each parish.  In the popular graphic novel format, this is an accurate description of the rich history of the Church in New York.  You might consider ordering copies as gifts or perhaps as a fund-raising tool for your parish and religious education program.  More information is in the Initiatives section of this combined mailing.

Eulogies at Funeral Masses   November, the traditional month when we remember our beloved departed, is a good time for us to be reminded about the use of eulogies at funeral liturgies.  This can be helpful for priests and the families they serve.  You may visit the archive library section for a refresher.  [Library:  Eulogies at Funeral Masses]

Share the Word   Give access to the priests and staff members of your parish to the material enclosed in this combined mailing which may be pertinent to them.  For it to succeed, we recommend that Some Things to Know be posted in the public area of the parish office.

Just One More Thing   A ten-year-old girl was asked by another classmate, “What is it like to be a Christian?”  The little girl replied, “It is like being a pumpkin.  God picks you from the patch, brings you in, and washes all the dirt off you.  Then he cuts open the top and scoops out all the yucky stuff.  He removes the seeds of hate and then he carves you a new smiling face and puts his light inside of you to shine for all the world to see.”  Happy Thanksgiving.