The Link
The newsletter for The Brooklyn Oratory Parishes

"I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons."
-St. John Henry Cardinal Newman, C.O.
 The Brooklyn Oratory Parishes
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Boniface
June 15, 2021
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From Your Pastors
St Philip Neri, the founder of the Oratory, loved to share stories of the lives of the Saints. For Philip the heroic characters of those stories provided not only inspiration but a way to travel to the exotic places and times. In the parishes of St Boniface and Assumption, we do not have to travel far to encounter a saint. Just two miles away, in Bedford-Stuyvesant, lived and worked and most likely the first official saint of Brooklyn, Father Bernard Quinn.

Bernard Quinn was born in Newark on January 15, 1888, on the same day that Pope Leo XIII canonized Peter Claver, the Spanish Jesuit who devoted his life heroically to the care of African slaves in South America. After serving as an Army chaplain in World War I, Fr. Quinn was granted permission to begin the first parish devoted to Black
Catholics in Brooklyn. In 1922, he bought what was formerly a Protestant church; the building was blessed and dedicated to St. Peter Claver on February 26, 1922. Fr Quinn was known for his openhearted kindness, patience, and compassion, especially for the downtrodden. In a move dear to St Philip Neri’s heart, Quinn established a vibrant children’s choir for Sunday Masses. Two associated with that music program you might recognize: Lena Horne and Pearl Bailey.

Fr. Quinn would later go on to found Little Flower Children Services, which cared for the increasing number of Black children orphaned as a result of the Great Depression. Little Flower Children Services, which continues to this day working with children with disabilities, was first situated in Wading River, Long Island. Fr. Quinn and his collaborators twice rebuilt the orphanage after it was burnt down twice by a mob reportedly lead by a local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan. He faced considerable opposition even among fellow churchmen. Quinn famously said in response: "No church can exclude anyone and still keep its Christian ideals."

After a lifetime of fighting for racial equality, he died in 1940 at the age of 52. His legacy continues in the vibrant parish of St Martin de Pores which incorporates three churches including St Peter Claver in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. His cause for canonization is currently under way.

With this Friday being Juneteenth, it seems appropriate to reflect on the life of Father Bernard Quinn and his conviction that to be a Christian means to exclude no one and to work for social justice for all.

Juneteenth has a long history in the African American community. In the face of the painful and brutal history of slavery and segregation it offers a light of hope on the fight for freedom and justice. As noted by the National Museum of African American History & Culture, Juneteenth is a time to celebrate, to gather as a family, to reflect on the past and look to the future. It is a holiday that commemorates the June 19, 1865, announcement of the abolition of slavery in Texas, and more generally the emancipation of African American slaves throughout the Confederate South.

Emancipation did not finally come until General Gordon Granger rode into Galveston, Texas and issued General Order No. 3, on June 19, almost two and a half years after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863. Celebrated on June 19, the word is a portmanteau of “June” and “nineteenth.” We encourage all to spend time reflecting on the meaning of the day and to pray for real change.

In his first pastoral letter to his parishioners, soon after the inauguration of the parish of St Peter Claver, Fr Quinn pledged: “to willingly shed to the last drop my life’s blood for the least among you.”

Jesus you revealed God through your willingness to shed your blood for us,
and we encounter you still today in the faces of every one of our sisters and brothers.
Guide us, through the love you revealed, to establish the justice you proclaimed,
that all peoples might dwell in harmony and peace, united by that one love that binds us
to each other, and to you. Amen

Fr. Mark Lane, c.o. and Fr. Michael Callaghan, c.o.
Summer Weekend Mass Schedule begins
Sunday June 20 through Sept 5, 2021
5:00pm Vigil on Saturday
10:30am Sunday

St. Boniface
9:00am and 6:00pm on Sundays
Father’s Day Novena Masses begin June 20
Please send in your names (living & deceased) for the Novena of Masses for Father’s Day. You can use PushPay to make an offering or place it in an envelope in the stewardship basket. Send names to

The deadline to submit names is Wednesday, June 16.
Day of Retreat- June 22
Please note that the Fathers and Brothers of the Oratory will be on a Day of Retreat on June 22. As such, the parish office will be closed. There will be a concelebrated 9:00am Mass at Assumption after which the church will be closed for the day. There will be no 12:10 Mass at St. Boniface that day.
Assumption Parish Pastoral Council
Nominations for the Assumption PPC are open and we invite you to consider nominating someone who is willing to serve a three year term as we continue to build forward post pandemic. Nominations can be made through the following online form and will be reviewed by the PPC in July. Terms would begin in September. PPC members are asked to participate in the monthly meetings and help coordinate one of the five core committees which create the umbrella for other committees and activities: Finance/Stewardship; Outreach and Social Justice; Formation (Youth and Adult); Hospitality (welcome of new parishioners and all associated activities) and Liturgy/Spirituality. 

Please use this link to nominate yourself or someone else: Assumption PPC Nomination
Training for Citi-bike Mechanic Jobs
Applicants have to be 18+ years old and job ready – able to be consistent, punctual, work well with colleagues, take direction, and stay productive for the whole day. You will get the skills to be a good mechanics. No educational requirement. All are welcome to apply. No experience required. Participants can choose morning or afternoon classes.

Mass Intentions
If you would like to request a mass for someone living or deceased, mass intentions are available. Email The offering is $20. Please pay by using Pushpay or by mailing a check to 64 Middagh St. Brooklyn, NY 11201.
Prayer to St. Philip Neri
O holy St. Philip Neri, patron saint of joy, you who trusted Scripture’s promise that the Lord is always at hand and that
we need not have anxiety about anything, in your compassion
heal our worries and sorrows
and lift the burdens from our hearts.
We come to you as one whose heart swells with abundant love for God and all creation, hear us we pray especially in this need....
Keep us safe through your loving intercession, and may the joy of the Holy Spirit
which filled your heart St. Philip,
transform our lives and bring us peace.

The Brooklyn Oratory Parishes 
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St Boniface
Roman Catholic Communities in
Downtown Brooklyn and Brooklyn Heights
Both parishes operate from one office:

64 Middagh Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201