June greetings to all of our Secular Augustinian Recollects, Guild members, and the Hispanic Committee!
The Sacred Heart/Tagaste community was pleasantly surprised to receive a letter from Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, announcing that public Sunday Masses in the Archdiocese were being resumed on a restricted basis on the Solemnity of Corpus Christi, June 14, 2020. Weekday Masses had already begun as part of “Phase 1” of the planned reopening of churches in light of diminishing infection rates from the Covid-19 pandemic. “Our first priority,” the Cardinal stated, “is the safety of the clergy and people, and the self-care of all ministers. The second priority is to resume in-person worship.” Fr. Michael Rafferty and I were very happy to resume both the English and Spanish Masses at the parish, allowing our community once again to receive the sacramental Body and Blood of the Lord on such a fitting occasion as Corpus Christi. Following Archdiocesan directions, the church was clearly marked off for safe distancing with 25 percent capacity—about 80 people—allowed inside and additional seating provided outside the church to handle the overflow. The church was properly equipped with sanitizing devices and all participants were required to wear masks and follow directions for safely receiving Holy Communion. Services were accompanied by music, and lay lectors and eucharistic ministers carried out their assigned duties. It was a wonderful reunion! On Friday, June 19, Sacred Heart Church joined parishes throughout the Archdiocese in holding a “Day of Reconciliation” to give our people the opportunity to once again receive the Sacrament of Penance. Frs. Michael and John heard parishioners’ confessions under two tents set up in parish parking lot.
A happy outcome for a good friend of Tagaste. Angeline and Jack Clifford (died May, 2002) have been friends of Tagaste Monastery for a good many year, regularly attending fund-raising events sponsored by the Pius X Guild and bringing many friends with them for the festivities. Recently “Angie” along with so many other Rockland County residents caught the Corona Virus, but happily she has recovered. A part of her story appears below.
“Waiting outside the CareOne assisted living center in Paramus, Elizabeth Clifford of Ramsey [New Jersey] clutched a green packet of Extra spearmint gum.
After 41 days, her 92-year-old mother, Angeline Clifford, of Suffern, New York, was being released after battling COVID-19. The thing she craved most was her favorite Extra gum, and Elizabeth had it at the ready.
When asked how she felt after weeks of isolation, the Clifford matriarch replied with a smile: “Just fine.”
Angeline’s story is yet another hopeful reminder of those who beat the odds to overcome COVID-19. She will turn 93 in September.”
For full story go to: Rebecca King, NorthJersey.com Published 3:09 p.m. ET June 11, 2020 | Updated 1:12 p.m. ET June 21, 2020
Tagaste Monastery will continue to remain closed to all group activities until further notice; all religious services are currently being conducted at Sacred Heart Church. Our prayers continue to be extended to our SAR fraternity, the members of our Guild, as well as our congregation at Sacred Heart and, of course, our province of St. Nicholas of Tolentine and our Augustinian Recollect family around the world.
Please remember in your prayers the happy repose and eternal resurrection of Marina del Castillo and all of our beloved dead.
Fr. John Gruben, OAR, prior
Theresa Giampaglia, SAR president
Connie Montanye, Guild president