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 1, 2021
Visit our website for more information:
Welcome Thaddeus Meleney who was baptized on Sunday at St. Boniface.
Congratulations to his family, mum Katie and dad Peter.
From your Pastors

What exactly is an Oratory? What makes it different from other religious congregations in the Catholic Church? Thanks to a lead from parishioner Brenda Becker, we are including an excerpt and a link to an article by Elizabeth Scalia that appear recently in “Word on Fire Blog.” The article was occasioned by the Feast of the founder of the Oratory, St Philip Neri, Wednesday May 26.

The article is entitled Philip Neri, John Henry Newman and the Idea of the Oratory. There is a delightful reference to the Brooklyn Oratory that captures well the charism of the Oratory and its local incarnation in our own community.

Over time, I have grown to love Neri as a true friend and teacher, but I still struggled with the idea of the Oratory; a place for Mass and for the performance of plays and political debate? Was the sacred being profaned, or the secular being sacralized? How exactly did that work?

It was only after participating in a symposium at the Brooklyn Oratory of St. Boniface that I came to see what a powerful and prophetic gift Philip Neri had given to the Church.

The Oratory is powerful because it is beautiful. Philip Neri always argued for beauty as the necessary attraction that leads us to the good and the true. Before the symposium, there was celebrated a High Mass, and it was everything the Mass should be: holy, reverent, mindful, warm, and welcoming. Like Neri, it was a liturgy both serious and full of joy. It was beautiful in participation; beautiful in homiletics; beautiful in its spare simplicity; beautiful—heartstoppingly so—in its music, which was facilitated by a splendidly-voiced organ and a professional-grade choir of which Neri’s other great friend, Palestrina, would doubtless have approved.

The Oratory is prophetic because Philip Neri understood that while the Church needs its gorgeous buildings and sanctuaries to give us instruction and delight through our senses, and while she needs the ballast of rules and rubrics to keep a universal barque in balance, what is additionally (and as importantly) required is a laity that understands its faith and has learned how to thoughtfully integrate the ways of heaven with all of our earthly encounters. A laity that can engage with the times without becoming absorbed by them because it understands that—despite trends and polities and movements—“the true servant of God acknowledges no other country but heaven.”

The Oratory is the fruit of Neri’s vision of the Church coming out to meet the world, and the world willingly stepping inside.

This is what I saw at the Brooklyn Oratory. After the liturgy, which had truly been a “taste of heaven,” the Oratory prepared for earth. As people removed to another space and shared “potluck” breakfast, the Presence was reverently (and discreetly) reposed elsewhere and the Oratory became that place of talk and gathering and mind-meeting that Philip intended. Invited speakers shared their thoughts; guests in attendance asked questions, agreed or disagreed; there was some laughter, some tension, even a few tears. There was head-on engagement and, at the parting, sincere and respectful good wishes, and expressed hopes to meet again, “perhaps at next week’s concert,” or the following week’s class.

This has been the Oratorian mission for the last five hundred years. Long before Pope Francis suggested that the Church open its doors and go out to meet the world, Oratorians have been stepping outside and bringing people in, meeting for the simple sake of community and Christ—making everyone feel like they really do have a place in the Church and in the pew—and then giving room for the Holy Spirit to work thingstoward God’s purposes, an idea which Philip endorsed completely, saying, “All of God’s purposes are to the good; although we may not always understand this we can trust in it.”

The full article can be found here:

Fr. Mark Lane, c.o. and Fr. Michael Callaghan, c.o.
Nominations for Parish Council Members at Large
St Boniface Parish Council is seeking a diversity of candidates to run for members at large this June. Please consider if you would like to nominate someone or yourself for this 2 year position on the Parish Council.

Members at large are expected to attend the monthly meeting of the PPC and to assume leadership responsibility with new or current initiatives of the council. We accept up to 6 nominations for the election of 3 positions of members at large each year.

To nominate someone or yourself, please contact Nancy Dawes at by Wednesday, June 9.

For the candidates who will run for the 3 positions, we need a one paragraph bio about yourself, and a head shot photo that will be posted with the election information and voting by Tuesday June 15.

This year voting will be electronic to minimize printing and mailing work for the office staff. However, if you prefer you can contact Carole Fabrizio in the office to vote.
Save the Date! June 5
The Congregation of the Oratory is pleased to announce that Timothy Passow, a Novice of the Brooklyn Oratory will be vested the habit of the Congregation. The members of the Oratory will concelebrate and participate in the Liturgy. All are welcome to join us and some members of Tim’s family and friends for this joyous occasion.

Saturday June 5 at the 5:00pm Vigil Mass for the Feast of Corpus Christi at Assumption Parish.
NEW! Bible Study
The St. Charles Borromeo/St. Augustine – St. Francis Xavier Bible Study Group invites the members of The Brooklyn Oratory parish communities to join them. Working with the Little Rock Scripture Study program, the next 3 sessions on the Letters of John will be on June 6, 13 & 27. Meetings are on Zoom on Sunday evenings at 5 PM. Each session is approximately 1 hour long. New members are welcome. If you are interested in joining or have any questions, you may contact Virginia Navarro at for the materials.

Join Zoom:
The meeting ID is: 849 0802 1688 and the password is: 1584
To join via a computer or smart phone click on this link and select Launch Meeting to be connected:

To join by phone, dial (301) 715-8592 and, when prompted,
enter the meeting ID 849 0802 1688 followed by # (you will not need a password).
First Eucharist
We are pleased that our young people will celebrate first Holy Communion in June. There are 13 from Assumption and 14 from St. Boniface. The families and First Communicants will attend one of the Masses at Assumption or St. Boniface on June 6, 12, or 13th.
Covid 19 Vaccine Updates for Youth
On May 10th, children aged 12 years and older became eligible to receive the COVID- 19 vaccine.

To answer questions about vaccinating children, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has shared a COVID-19 Vaccines for Preteens and Teens FACT SHEET with information on safety, possible side effects, and tips on what to do before, during and after your child’s vaccination. Additional resources are listed in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Parents of Adolescents TOOLKIT (also available in Spanish).
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.
Mass Times and Church Hours

Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
The church is closed on Mondays.
Weekday church hours:
8:30am-12:00 noon Tuesday through Friday.
Weekday Mass:
9:00am Tuesday through Friday.

Weekend Masses
5:00pm on Saturday and 10:00am on Sunday

Confessions Saturday:
4:15pm-4:45pm at the St. Joseph’s Altar
First Saturday of the month:
9:00am Mass with Benediction to follow
Summer Weekend Mass Schedule begins Sunday June 20
5:00pm Vigil on Saturdays
10:30am Sunday
Summer Weekend Mass Schedule begins Sunday June 20
5:00pm Vigil on Saturdays
10:30am Sunday
St. Boniface
The church is closed on Fridays.
Weekday church hours:
11:30-1:00pm Monday through Thursday
Weekday Mass:
12:10pm Monday through Thursday

Sunday church hours:
9:30am-12:30pm and 5:15pm-7:00pm
Sunday Masses:
10:00am, 11:15am, and 6:00pm

Confessions Saturday:
During Eucharistic Adoration, 12:30-1:00pm, on Wednesdays and before Mass on Sunday 5:15pm-5:45pm
Summer Weekend Mass Schedule begins Sunday June 20
St. Boniface
9:00am and 6:00pm on Sundays

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