Religion Briefs for Bay Ridge and Bensonhurst

May 9, 2013 By Francesca Norsen Tate
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St. Dominic’s New Libutti Prayer Center Offers Day of Reflection: ‘Living the Fruits of the Holy Spirit’

St. Dominic Roman Catholic Church in Bensonhurst offers a daylong program at its new prayer center.

The program, “Living the Fruits of the Holy Spirit” takes place on Saturday, June 1, at the Libutti Center, next to St. Dominic’s Rectory. The guest speaker is Fr. Johannes Siegert of Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish.   The day will consist of Mass, Morning Reflection, Eucharistic Adoration, Afternoon Reflection, and Closing Prayer.  An opportunity will be provided for lunch; each participant needs to bring a “brown bag” lunch).  Those interested in attending please call St. Dominic’s Rectory 718-259-4636 to register.

St. Dominic’s Church bought the house next door to the rectory in the 1990s, renovated it and used it for the youth ministry for a while. It wasn’t fully utilized until this past January when Fr. Vincent Chirichella was assigned to St. Dominic’s and began forming new ministries here. As part of these initiatives, Fr. Vincent decided to turn the Libutti Center into a prayer space.

The Center was named after Daniel Libutti, who was co-chairman on the dedication journal committee for St. Dominic’s Church when it was built.  He was also one of the first parish trustees.

Submitted by Roseanne Bourke, St. Dominic’s parishioner

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Prayer Shawl Ministry Begins at St. Dominic’s

One of the new initiatives at St. Dominic’s is a prayer shawl ministry that parishioner Roseanne Bourke has begun.

A prayer shawl is a soft hand-made (crochet) garment that is meant to bring comfort to the wearer; and to inspire an awareness of God’s presence in our daily lives.  The shawl maker begins with prayers and blessings for the recipient of the shawl; and the special intentions are continued throughout the creation of the shawl.  Upon its completion, a final blessing is offered before the shawl is sent to its recipient.

The prayer shawl recipient customarily the shawl as a covering to comfort, enfold, wrap, and offer warmth.  Prayer shawls console those who are grieving, comfort those who are ill and bring hope to those who are in despair.  

This special ministry will meet once a week at St. Dominic’s; all levels of crocheters and knitters are welcome. Participants do not need to know how in order to create a prayer shawl. Basic instructions for beginners will be provided. So far, 14 people have signed up and the ministry convened for the first time this week.  

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Churches Are Special Part Of Norwegian Day Parade

When Brooklyn’s 61st Norwegian Constitution Day Parade steps off onto Third Avenue later this month, several church organizations will be in the lineup.

The Norwegian Constitution Day Parade (aka Norwegian Day Parade) is scheduled for the third Sunday in May, the one closest to Norway’s Constitution Day on May 17.

This year’s Parade is on May 19—rain or shine—starting at 1:30 p.m., with the theme, “Sharing Our Norwegian Traditions.”

Many of the churches have a long history in marching in the Norwegian Day Parade. This year, participating churches and faith-based organizations include, as of press time: The Norwegian Seamen’s Church; Bethlehem Lutheran Church and Bay Ridge Center for Older Adults; The First Evangelical Free Church (66th Street Church); 59th Street Lutheran Brethren Church; Norwegian Christian Home and Health Care Center; Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church; Trinity Lutheran Church; Zion Lutheran Church – Brooklyn. Also participating in this group are several guest organizations: Hellevik Men’s Choir from Norway; Breezy Point Catholic Club Pipe &Drum and Zion Lutheran Church – Staten Island.

The parade will travel north along Third Avenue to 69th Street, where it will turn right and go over to Fifth Avenue. From Fifth Avenue, it will then turn left onto 67th Street, then right on 67th Street, passing the grandstand on the south side of Leif Erikson Park (between 6th and 7th Avenues.)

A short program at Leif Erikson Park will follow the parade, featuring guest speaker Rune Edvardsen, CEO and founder of humanitarian organization Dina Foundation and Chair of International World Ministries.

First Free Evangelical Church sits adjacent to Leif Erikson Park. Originally founded for Brooklyn’s growing immigrant population in search of freedom from adhering to Norway’s state church. First Free Church is a now multi-heritage congregation which maintains its Norwegian roots.  Mr. Edvardsen will also be speaking at First Free Church the evening before the Norwegian Day Parade: on Saturday May 18 from 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. His presentation will spotlight a humanitarian organization: Dina Foundation, which fights directly against poverty and oppression in the Congo, Burundi, Rwanda, India and Indonesia. His post-parade talk at Leif Erikson Park on Sunday begins at 4:30 p.m. More information is available through the First Free Evangelical Church’s Facebook page.

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Trivia Treasures from this week’s religion news:

Which Catholic parish in Flatbush has Polish and Spanish as two of its three languages?


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