Life offers us many occasions to celebrate – births, baptisms, graduations, confirmations, and weddings to name just a few – but today we celebrate those who have gone before us, and those who will follow, and ourselves, in the ongoing witness to God’s love and grace acting in the world through St. Anselm Parish.
We also say “thank you” and “best wishes” to Msgr. Maloney for his service throughout the diocese and here at St. Anselm as our pastor.
Sunday, June 5th, the Feast of Pentecost, dawned beautifully, presaging the beautiful day to be enjoyed by the parish. The 8 AM, 10 AM, and Noon Masses had been cancelled, to be replaced by a single 11 AM Mass. And what a Mass it Was! Truly it was a “Celebration”. As is customary the parish held Adult Confirmations, on this Feast of Pentecost on which the Church celebrates the Descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles. Monsignor Maloney administered Confirmation and served as principal celebrant of the Anniversary Mass. He was joined by 4 concelebrants – Msgr. Michael Phillips, whose presence was greeted with warm applause as Msgr. Maloney noted how happy everyone was to have him back home again, Fr. Anthony Alimnonu, C.S.Sp, Fr. Szymon Galazyn, and Fr. Adam Kasela, who had journeyed from Savannah, Georgia to be a sponsor for one of the Confirmation candidates. The music for the occasion was especially splendid with the St. Anselm Adult Choir and organist joined by brass and timpani, all under the direction of Therese Panicali, the Director of Music for the Parish.
Monsignor Maloney spoke movingly about the significance of the Feast and about his own service in the diocese and as our pastor. Monsignor introduced his family and spoke with appreciation about the people who come weekly and even daily to attend Mass and receive the Eucharist. He acknowledged that a parish has many parts and thanked the many parishioners who volunteer – “the backbone” of the parish, “the people who get things done”. He also spoke about his plans to move to Our Lady of Angels Rectory and thanked Fr. Kevin Abels, pastor of OLA, for his hospitality.
As the Mass drew to a close Monsignor acknowledged all those who had helped to make the liturgy special. He reminded the congregation that God is always with us; that all we need to do is to call on him – “Father”. As Monsignor concluded his comments he was greeted with thunderous applause from all those present.
What’s better than a splendid, celebratory Mass – a Mass followed by a party, and so the liturgy being concluded, parishioners and clergy moved to Meletia Hall in the Academy building to celebrate! A delicious selection of sandwiches and pizza awaited the partygoers. And, there was cake, cake, and more cake – a cake for the parish’s 100th birthday, cakes to celebrate Monsignor Maloney’s retirement and birthday, and a cake to welcome home Msgr. Phillips. There were proclamations and best wishes from our local elected officials: Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, Member of Congress; Sen. Andrew Gounardes, NYS Senate; and NYC Councilmember Justin Brannan. But, the real focus of the afternoon was the joy everyone felt at the opportunity to be together. People chatted, greeting each other and just feeling happy! And, parishioners had the opportunity to take home a beautiful prayer card with pictures of the church’s sanctuary on the front and the Fitzgerald home, where the first parish Mass was celebrated, on the reverse as a memento of our 100th anniversary. Truly, we had a celebration!
As Monsignor said – speaking of “people who get things done”, there are a host of individuals who made the celebration possible: our thanks to Eileen Loughlin for pulling all the pieces together and keeping all the balls in the air, to the 8th Grade Bay Ridge Catholic Academy volunteers, who provided much-appreciated assistance thru out the party, as well as thanks to the 8th grade Academy student pianist whose talent on the keyboard added so much to the afternoon. And, “thanks” to a wonderful committee and group of volunteers: Stephen Clavin, Christine Cafiero, Jeanine Condon, Cono D’Alora, Katie Dean, Julia DeLorenzo Martin, Florence Diaz, Barbara Fabris, Bob Kassenbrock, Peter Loughlin, Bernadette McLaughlin, Bob Motavali, Linda Naradovy, Nancy Nolan, Kim Parker, John Quaglione, Marla Rooney, Michele Soto, Mary Jane Tunny, Josephine Volpe, Suzanne Whiteaker, and a special thanks to Gary Williams for emceeing the afternoon.
Congratulations and Best Wishes to Msgr. Maloney on his retirement. We wish him every happiness and say “thank you” for his years of service throughout the diocese and here at St. Anselm as our pastor.
May God Bless St. Anselm Parish and our parishioners as we embark on a new century as witnesses to God’s love and grace.
On Sunday, June 4, 1922, the first Mass in Saint Anselm Parish was offered on this table in the home of Mr. and Mrs. T. F. Fitzgerald 8105 Colonial Road by the Founder ~ Pastor Rev. James Smyth.
St. Anselm Parish, 1922 ~ 2022, Celebrating 100 Years and Beyond!
All the best,
The St. Anselm Publicity Committee