December 13, 2020 ~ Third Sunday of Advent

First Reading:
I rejoice heartily in the Lord, in my God is the joy of my soul. (Is. 61:10a)

My soul rejoices in my God. (Is. 61:10b)

Second Reading:
May the God of peace make you perfectly holy and may you entirely, spirit, soul, and body, be preserved blameless for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thes. 5:23)

“I am the voice of one crying out in the desert, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord’.” (Jn. 1:23)

Excerpts from the Lectionary for Mass ©2001, 1998, 1970 CCD. The English translation of Psalm Responses from Lectionary for Mass © 1969, 1981, 1997, International Commission on English in the Liturgy Corporation. All rights reserved.

Live the Liturgy—Inspiration for the Week:
What gives you joy? Joy is discovered when we connect with something or someone very deeply and experience a dimension of ourselves that material or secular possessions cannot bring. Joy is stumbled upon when we see our newly born child for the first time, get caught up in the vastness of a mountain landscape, and are led out into infinity gazing at an ocean’s horizon, or being lovingly present with someone when they are vulnerable and in need. Joy is a profound experience that in its uniqueness grounds us in ultimate truth. Did you know that all authentic, profound, and memorable moments of joy mirror the eternal joy we desire from God? We can have glimpses of this eternal Divine joy as we embark upon our earthly journey, mirrored in our human connections with joy, but experienced directly during moments of deep prayer. God is the joy of my soul. Ponder those intense words! You will know moments of true and real joy by paying attention to your response to the experience. You will find yourself rejoicing and saying thank you.


Catholic Quotes—Words to Inspire the Faithful:








© Liturgical Publications Inc.


  • Food Pantries:
    • Ovid Federated church: Mondays, 10:00 a.m. Food truck resumes in January at 4:00 p.m. in the parking lot at South Seneca high school.
    • Interlaken Reformed church: 3:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m., Fridays
    • Trumansburg Food Pantry: Methodist church 11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. and 5:15–6:00 p.m., every other Monday (December 21)
  • Family Hope Center: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12:00–4:00 p.m., Holy Cross
  • AA Meetings:
    • Tuesdays, 7:30 p.m., St. Francis Solanus, Interlaken
    • Thursdays, Noon, St. James the Apostle, Trumansburg
  • Bernard is Available: 6:30–7:30 p.m., Fridays, St. Francis Solanus
  • Parish of Mary, Mother of Mercy’s Sunday Mass: Can be viewed at our parish website:

Christmas Mass Schedule:
Due to Covid-19 and the restrictions of attendees in church buildings, pre-registration to attend Christmas Masses will be required. Mass attendance at St. James is limited to 54, at St. Francis to 35, and Holy Cross to 80. Please phone the parish office (607–294–0064) or email ( to make your reservation together with the number of persons attending with you. All are to sanitize their hands on entering the church and wear masks. According to the directives there will be no singing.

Christmas Eve Masses, Thursday, December 24:

  • 4:00 p.m. St. James the Apostle
  • 5:00 p.m. St. Francis Solanus
  • 7:00 p.m. St. James the Apostle
  • 8:00 p.m. Holy Cross

Christmas Day Masses, Friday, December 25:

  • 9:00 a.m. St. James the Apostle
  • 10:30 a.m. Holy Cross

Boxed Offertory Envelopes:
Boxed offertory envelopes for 2021 are available in the foyers of the churches for parishioners who are presently using them. Parishioners wishing to have boxed offertory envelopes, please notify the Parish Office and a box of envelopes will be made available for pick-up.

Parish 2021 Calendars:
In the foyers of our churches the Parish 2021 Calendars are available. Simply, please, take one calendar per household. Thank you.

2020/2021 Catholic Ministries Appeal:
As of December 3, 83 parish families have contributed to the CMA. We thank those who have given generously and ask all who have not yet given to prayerfully consider doing so. The CMA helps our Church and our parish in so many ways. Please consider all the ways that God has blessed you and your family and think how the Church has brought goodness into your lives. Join our appeal and give back what you can so that we remain strong and able to do God’s great work. Our parishioner households have contributed $17, 671 which represents 58.94% of our given goal of $29,979.

The Word Among Us:
Daily meditations for Advent and the Advent daily Mass bible readings are available in the booklet, “The Word Among Us.” The booklets are in the church vestibules. A free will offering can be made for the booklet. It would be good that every household have and use the booklet daily during the Advent Season.

Snow Days:
A reminder that during the week, if a “snow day” has been declared for local schools, there will be no 8:30 a.m. morning Mass.

Churches Will Be Closed on Weekdays:
Due to the recent rise of COVID-19 cases, our parish churches of Holy Cross, Ovid and St. James the Apostle, Trumansburg will be open only for the weekend Masses. St. Francis Solanus Church, Interlaken, the Church and Parish Office, will remain open.

Respect Life:
All are welcome to come and pray every Friday morning from 8:30–11 a.m. at Planned Parenthood, 620 W. Seneca St., Ithaca, and to be available to offer life-affirming options to women considering abortions. For more information contact Carolann Darling at 607–351–6668.

Local Red Kettle Campaign:
The Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign will be conducted at the Trumansburg ShurSave grocery store. We need folks willing to donate their time to ring the bell. To sign up (or to get more information) call Judy Robertson at 607–387–6488. The campaign will be conducted from the day after Thanksgiving until Christmas Eve (November 27 through December 24). The money that is collected comes back to our community.

Enrollment Info at Notre Dame High School:
Notre Dame High School, Grades 7–12, is holding virtual admissions and enrollment sessions on Thursday evenings via ZOOM from 7–8 p.m. now and through early 2021. Interested students and their families can join the link by visiting the Notre Dame website: ND offers busing from the Ithaca area to Notre Dame. For more information, please contact Brett Moore at 607–734–2267. 

Support Your Local Economy:
An encouragement has been offered by the Labor Religion Coalition in Tompkins County to support the local economy. To keep more people employed in our area and to ensure that local governments can fund social services for youth, elders, and low income people through sales taxes, please help local economies thrive.

The Bishop’s Reminder:
Due to the prevalence of the Coronavirus, the obligation to attend Sunday Mass is suspended until further notice. Those who are at a higher risk of COVID-19 and those concerned for their health are urged not to come to church for Mass. Those who feel in any way sick should not enter any parish building or church.

Donating to Your Parish:
Online giving by WeShare is safe, simple and convenient. It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3:

  1. Visit the parish website’s giving page:
  2. Follow the directions under the “Donate Online” section.
  3. Set up your donation or payment.

That’s it! Your account will be created and you can put away your checkbook. If you experience any problems, please email Eileen at

Christmas Flower Offering:
In the boxes of offertory envelopes there is an envelope titled “Christmas Flower Offering.” In the foyers of the Churches there are also Christmas Flower Offering envelopes. Please deposit the offerings in the collection baskets at the entrances of the church or mail them to the Parish Office. “Thank you” for your help.

Child and Family Resources, Inc.:
For families in Seneca County, Child and Family Resources, Inc. is available for serving children and families. They are located at 263 Lake Street, Penn Yan. The phone number is 315–536–1134 ext. 2310. The toll free childcare referral line is 800–881–5786. Office hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Visit for more information.

Birthright of Ithaca:
Birthright of Ithaca has moved to a new location at 223 Elmira Rd. Suite #1 Ithaca, NY. They are open four days a week: Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday from 10:00 a.m.– 1:00 p.m.; and Thursday from 1:00–6:00 p.m. Birthright of Ithaca has been providing compassionate care for women and their families of all faiths for more than 38 years. For more information please phone 607–272–9070.

Tompkins County Workers’ Center:
People who feel that they have received unfair or illegal treatment at work are welcome to contact the Worker’s Right Hotline at 607–269–0409 or email The center works with each person’s individual circumstances and desires with the goal to empower them to be more effective and knowledgeable self-advocates and advocates for other workers in their workplaces.

COVID-19 Rental Assistance Program:
This program is designed to provide up to three months of rent relief to eligible households who have experienced a loss of income related to the public health crisis. To learn more or apply, visit or phone 607–277–4500. Assistance is available to renters in four counties including Seneca, Schuyler, Tioga, and Tompkins.

Please take time this week to pray the rosary for an end to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prayer Intentions:
Since we presently cannot have the prayer request books in our churches, do know that the prayer requests of fellow parishioners are still being listed on the parish website (see PRAYERS in top bar). If you would like to add a request, please email the parish at or phone the parish office at 607–294–0064 and it will be added to the list.

Prayers from the Sisters of St. Joseph:
The Sisters of St. Joseph have a prayer ministry for the Diocese of Rochester. They have informed our parish that Sr. Anne Marie Burns will be praying for the parish of Mary, Mother of Mercy, during 2020. In gratitude, let us pray for Sr. Anne Burns and all the Sisters of St. Joseph.

Pregnancy Care Center of the Finger Lakes:
The Pregnancy Care Center of the Finger Lakes is located at 551 Exchange St. in Geneva with an office in Ovid at 7231 Main St. “If you regret your abortion, you are not alone. Let us help you learn to forgive yourself.” For more information phone 315 789 0708, text: 315-945-1019, or e-mail

Cancer Services Program (CSP):
Cortland and Tompkins Counties offer free cancer screenings to those who are uninsured or have health insurance that does not cover these screenings. The screening services are provided in local health centers, doctors’ offices, and hospitals. For more information, contact CSP at 866 442 2262.

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© 2021 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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