Welcome to the parish of Mary, Mother of Mercy!

“We do not want … a Church that moves with the world.
We want a Church that will move the world.” ~G. K. Chesterton

A Message from Our Pastor:

November 25, 2020
St. Catherine of Alexandria

Dear Parishioners – servants of Jesus,

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Gospel for this First Sunday of Advent is Mark 13:33-37. In it, Jesus gives us the parable of a man, the lord of the house, who goes on a journey leaving his servants in charge of his home. The lord of the house encourages is servants to be attentive to their work in caring for the home so when he returns, he would find his home well maintained and in that they would be prepared to welcome his return.

The story is about Jesus who will physically leave his followers. His servants, the leaders of the faithful, are to take care of them just like when Jesus was physically present. Jesus encourages the servants to be watchful and alert in caring for them. Being watchful and alert, the servants and all of Jesus’s followers – his household – are to be ready to welcome him when he returns in glory – the Parousia.

In the first reading, Isaiah 63:16b-17, 19b; 64:2-7, we have indications as to how the servants are to be watchful and alert. The servants are to cling to our heavenly Father by following his laws, that is, his revealed ways. They allow God to be the potter and they the clay thus being formed into the children of God. Isaiah also teaches when servants are not watchful and alert, they ignore how good and awesome God is; they wander from God’s ways; and, they harden their hearts through self-centeredness.

In the second reading, 1 Corinthians 1:3-9, St. Paul speaks of watchful and alert servants. He speaks of servants as being mindful of God’s ways and doing what is right. They are those who rejoice in the knowledge received from Jesus and they rejoice in their fellowship with him. St. Paul also speaks of Jesus’s return as “…the day of Our Lord Jesus Christ”.

At the beginning of our Advent Season, the sacred readings today remind us that all of us are the servants of Jesus. We are doorkeepers, watchful and alert, maintaining God’s household until Jesus’s welcomed return, the Parousia.

With love for you all,
Fr. Bernard, OFM Cap.


  • Please be aware that for pick-up In the foyers of the churches there are:
    • The Word Among Us, booklets containing daily meditations for Advent;
    • 2021 Parish Calendars;
    • 2021 boxes of offertory envelopes for parish households presently using them;
    • Christmas flower offering envelopes.
  • In some way, please attempt to share these communiques with other family members. This weekend’s bulletin is available here.
  • Each weekend the Parish Sunday Mass is video taped and can be viewed through this link on Sunday or anytime during the week.

Click HERE for Sunday Mass

The Mass for the feast of Our Lord, Jesus Christ, King of the Universe is available for viewing through this link. The Mass for the first Sunday in Advent will be linked from here when it becomes available, later this weekend.

Gospel Meditation—Encourage Deeper Understanding of Scripture

November 29, 2020 ~ First Sunday of Advent

You are at the eye doctor and it’s time for the peripheral vision test. You know the one. It’s where you put your head up to a contraption and have to click a switch every time you see a squiggly line. If you don’t concentrate and maintain optimal focus, you will miss them and skew the outcome of the test. You can easily find yourself with a diagnosis that really isn’t accurate! Concentration and focus are key to succeeding with this evaluation. They are also key to developing a healthy, vibrant spiritual life. If we do not bring our full consciousness to the task, concentrate with all our might, be watchful and vigilant, we are not going to see God’s loving presence flashing before our eyes!

That’s why we need Advent. Let’s face it. We can easily get distracted, focus on nonessential and superficial things and lose touch with what really matters. Our attentions wander. We daydream and even become a bit overwhelmed and tired. All of the stresses and demands of life consume us and we find ourselves constantly trying to play catch up rather than relishing the moment of the now. “Now” moments are so fleeting. They flash before us like those squiggly lines on a screen. Present moments go as quickly as they come but it is important to discover them and rest in them as often as we can. Though gone in a flash, these now moments of encounter with God teach powerful lessons and offer a grounding in truth that can be found nowhere else. It’s the grace of Advent to become watchful and attentive because we are never sure when God will surprise us.

God loves surprises and love thrives on them! God’s now moments of surprises come as tender instants of intimate connection where I find profound peace, experience joy, and rest in love. These are Advent times reflective of the now moments when Christ first was born, when God surprises us during every time we care to watch and when the great surprise of Christ’s second coming dawns upon us all. But, to discover the grandeur and experience the awe of these now times, we have to be ready. We have to want to be there. We have to believe. And, we have to have the desire to soak in as much as we can in the time we have before us.


For Families

The Diocesan Office of Evangelization and Catechesis, continues to discover and develop new ways to reach out to families in these unprecedented times. The latest issue of their weekly newsletter, Family Zone, is now available. The school-year format of the Family Zone will allow you to choose quick, simple, 5-20 minute family activities that will help you reinforce the messages found in the weekly Mass readings.

The Family Zone is an interactive newsletter that “takes parents directly to online sites they can use, themselves, to be the primary formators of their children’s faith.” To stay up to date with opportunities around the Diocese, sign up for the Family Zone newsletter on their web page.

Our Church’s Responses to COVID-19

In response to information provided by the diocese, along with guidelines provided by local and state government and health officials concerning COVID-19, daily Masses have resumed in St. Francis church, Monday through Friday at 8:30 a.m. Weekend Masses have also resumed, with an added 4:00 p.m. Saturday Vigil Mass at St. James the Apostle church. All Masses have limited occupancy, based on civil and church guidelines. For those who cannot attend in person, the parish Mass is taped and linked above.

The diocese provides a variety of virtual events for “prayer, worship, and faith sharing.”  For updated and additional information, please visit the diocese’s web page related to the Covid-19 response.

“It is Bishop Matano’s fervent prayer that the Sacraments will soon be able to be celebrated with a reasonable number of faithful present, always mindful of our genuine concern that the People of God may receive the Sacraments, and that the necessary safety precautions are in place for the protection of all.”

Welcome to the web page for the parish of Mary, Mother of Mercy. This parish has three churches:

  • Holy Cross in Ovid, New York;
  • St. Francis Solanus in Interlaken, New York; and
  • St. James the Apostle in Trumansburg, New York.

The parish office is located at the Parish Center: 3660 Orchard St., Interlaken, New York.

The title Mother of Mercy is thought to have been first given to Blessed Virgin Mary by St. Odo (d.942), Abbot of Cluny. It is a fitting title of Our Lady both because she brought forth for us Jesus, the Christ, the visible manifestation of the mercy of the invisible God, and because she is the spiritual mother of the faithful, full of grace and mercy. Please join us in faith and in prayer at any of our three churches which are open each day for private devotions.

To join the parish community or to celebrate the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, anointing of the sick, or marriage, please phone the parish office (607 294–0064) or email: immmercy@dor.org to make arrangements.

Father is available for confessions at St. Francis church in Interlaken every Friday from 6:30–7:30 p.m. (social distancing will be respected). You may also phone the parish office (607 294–0064) to make an appointment to receive the sacrament of reconciliation with a priest.

Joining Fr. Bernard Maloney in residence at St. Fidelis Friary in Interlaken and part of our faith community:

  • Rev. Richard Crawley, OFM Cap., chaplain at Cayuga Correctional Facility, Moravia, N.Y.;
  • Rev. Roland Daigle, OFM Cap.; and
  • Br. Antonine Lizama, OFM Cap.

Mass Intentions at St. James the Apostle in Trumansburg, Holy Cross in Ovid, and St. Francis Solanus in Interlaken for the week of November 28–December 6, 2020
Saturday, November 28 St. James, 4:00 p.m.
Limited assembly (54)
Special intention
St. Francis, 5:00 p.m.
Limited assembly (35)
Parishioners and benefactors
Sunday, November 28 St. James, 9:00 a.m.
Limited assembly (54)
Special intention
Holy Cross, 10:30 a.m.
Limited assembly (80)
Special intention
Monday, November 30 St. Francis, 8:30 a.m. Special intention
Tuesday, December 1 St. Francis, 8:30 a.m. Special intention
Wednesday, December 2 St. Francis, 8:30 a.m. Special intention
Thursday, December 3 St. Francis, 8:30 a.m. Special intention
Friday, December 4 St. Francis, 8:30 a.m. Special intention
Saturday, December 5 St. James, 4:00 p.m.
Limited assembly (54)
Special intention
St. Francis, 5:00 p.m.
Limited assembly (35)
Parishioners and benefactors
Sunday, December 6 St. James, 9:00 a.m.
Limited assembly (54)
Marguerite Clark
from Mary’s Prayer Group
Holy Cross, 10:30 a.m.
Limited assembly (80)
Special intention

Those wishing to have someone remembered at a Mass on a particular day and time and place may phone the parish office (607-294-0064) expressing their request. You may also print out the Mass Intentions Request form, fill it out, and mail it to the parish office. All of the Mass intentions presently scheduled can be seen on the parish calendar.

Prayer to Mary, Mother of Mercy
Blessed Virgin Mary, who can worthily repay you with praise and  thanks for having rescued a fallen world by your generous consent! Receive our gratitude, and by your prayers obtain the pardon of our sins. Take our prayers into the sanctuary of heaven and enable them to make our peace with God.

Holy Mary, help the miserable, strengthen the discouraged, comfort the sorrowful, pray for your people, plead for the clergy, intercede for all women consecrated to God. May all who venerate you feel now your help and protection. Be ready to help us when we pray, and bring back to us the answers to our prayers. Make it your continual concern to pray for the people of God, for you were blessed by God and were made worthy to bear the Redeemer of the world, who lives and reigns forever. Amen.

Mass Times:

Daily Mass is available, Monday through Friday, at 8:30 a.m. in St. Francis Solanus church, Interlaken, N.Y.

Below is the parish weekend schedule of Masses (with limited assembly, face masks required, and social distancing in place):

4:00 p.m. at St. James (limited assembly of about 54 people)
5:00 p.m. at St. Francis (limited assembly of about 35 people)

9:00 a.m. at St. James (limited assembly of about 54 people)
10:30 a.m. at Holy Cross (limited assembly of about 80 people)

Sunday and holy day Masses will continue to be videotaped in our parish churches and are made available via this web site. If you cannot attend in person, you are encouraged to participate in Sunday Mass by viewing it on TV or via the Internet.

All regularly scheduled parish social and educational events are suspended until further notice.

Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confession:

Fridays, 6:30–7:30 p.m., at St. Francis Solanus in Interlaken or by appointment with a priest (social distancing will be respected).

© 2020 The Parish of Mary Mother of Mercy
3660 Orchard St., P.O. Box 403, Interlaken, NY 14847

St. James the Apostle, 17 Whig St, Trumansburg, NY
Holy Cross, 7231 Main Street, Ovid, N.Y.
St. Francis Solanus, 3660 Orchard St., Interlaken, N.Y.
Diocese of Rochester

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