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
August 14, 2020
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Join us this evening for the first Concert for the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Friday, August 14, 7:00pm @Assumption Church
55 Cranberry Street

A concert with music from Bach and Handel to celebrate the Assumption of the Blessed Mother.
Assumption and St. Boniface participate in Mission Appeal this weekend Marantha Caring Mission

As we do each year, we will have the opportunity to support the Catholic mission work. This weekend of August 15/16, an appeal will be offered on behalf of Maranatha Caring Mission at St Boniface and the Diocese of Bomadi at Assumption. Because of Covid the missionaries themselves will not be able to present themselves so Fr’s Michael and Mark will present their charitable works.

Maranatha Caring mission works in Nigeria among peasant farmers. They provide otherwise inaccessible eye as well as hernia, appendix and other surgeries. There are currently 210 patients awaiting these life transforming surgeries. $100 for cataract surgery. $20 a month follow up care. $50 for appendectomy or Herniorrhahy.

Our Sisters and Brothers in Bomadi need Clean Water
The Diocese of Bomadi, in the South of Nigeria, is an area where the faith is growing. The people are abjectly poor, and the people struggle to have potable water. Oil exploitation has significantly polluted the main river from which the people draw their water for drinking, cleaning and livestock. Their Bishop, Hyacinth Egbebo, MSP, has written to ask our help to bring clean water to communities through our support of the summer mission appeal on August 15/16. Having been given to drink from the well spring of eternal life and living with ready access to clean water, I urge you join to add your support to my $50 gift to the appeal to help the church in Bomadi bring essential water to our sisters and brothers there.


From Our Pastors
Sanctity is often forged in the fire of opposition. At least that is the case for Father Augustine Tolton.

Father Tolton was born into slavery on a plantation in Brush Creek, Missouri in 1854. He was christened Augustine after the great Roman North African theologian of the same name. The plantation owner’s wife was his godmother. As a child during the Civil War, under fire from Confederate soldiers, his mother carried him and two other siblings across the Mississippi River to freedom.

His family settled in Quincy Illinois. He attended an all white Catholic school where he developed a vocation to the priesthood despite considerable prejudice and mistreatment as the only person of color in the school. No Seminary in the United States at the time would accept a black man. So he enrolled in the Pontifical Urban University in Rome. He was ordained the first African-American Catholic priest in Rome in 1886, fluent in Latin, Greek and Italian.

He expected to spend his life as a missionary in Africa because of the opposition in the US Church to a black priest. But Cardinal Simeoni, then head of the Vatican Department for the Propagation of the Faith, insisted he go back to the US. “America has been called the most enlightened nation in the world,” the cardinal said, “We shall see if it deserves that honor.”

Father Tolton’s first mass in the US was at St Boniface, in his home town of Quincy. He faced considerable opposition, not least from his brother priests, and from some protestant clergymen who thought he was stealing their flock by attracting them to St Monica’s, the “national African-American parish” in Chicago. “Father Gus”, as he was affectionately called, grew the parish from obscurity to national attention by his preaching, music program and fundraising talents. He died after a brief illness at the age of 43 in 1897 during the heatwave that was ravishing the country at the time.

In June of last year Pope Francis put Father Tolton on the path to Sainthood in the Roman Catholic Church “declaring his heroic virtues.”

This announcement gives Father Gus the title of Venerable and is the first of three steps necessary if he is to be declared a Saint. At the announcement, Bishop Joseph Perry of the Archdiocese of Chicago, which is leading the cause, called Father Tolton “a bright light in a difficult period of this nation’s history. His life and ministry still speak to the problems of our day where communities, neighborhoods and churches continue to evidence separations among race and class and the disturbances that erupt periodically from these social contradictions.”

Venerable Father Augustine Tolton, pray for us, pray for our country, pray for our Church.

Fr. Mark Lane, C.O. and Fr. Michael Callaghan, C.O.
Please Keep the sick of the community in your prayers:
Mary Jane Jones, Joseph Asaro, Don McKillop, Robyn DeLorenzo, Brian and Robbie Lynch, Helen Knepple, Kathleen Folan, Pat Lally.

Rest In Peace:
Fr. Tom Cummings, SJ, Paul Newton, Herbert McLaughlin, Fr. James Bucaria, Raymond Muhs, Florence Hong.
Please remember, if you are able, to keep supporting our parishes as we try to maintain staff, clergy and operations during this time.
You can make your donation online through PushPay by clicking on one of these links:

Make your donation for the Mission Appeal by using Pushpay.

Or mail checks to:
The Brooklyn Oratory Parishes
64 Middagh Street
Brooklyn NY 11201
Attn: ABVM or St. Boniface

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