“The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and of great kindness.
The Lord is good to all and compassionate toward all his works.” ~Psalm 146
Dear Parishioners and Friends,
The Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick is for all those who are ill, aged or infirmed and facing significant mental duress
or grief. This Sacrament is deeply rooted in apostolic tradition and practice found in the New Testament… “Is anyone
among you sick? He should summon the presbyters of the church, and they should pray over him and anoint him with oil
in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will raise him up. If he has
committed any sins, he will be forgiven.” James 5:13-15 As Jesus would cure with the laying of his hands, so too does
the church continue in his mission.
A week or so ago, we had the opportunity to celebrate the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick in church, inviting
anyone needing the Sacrament to attend. Afterwards we finished with a wonderful Strawberry Social. I love strawberries
- especially fresh strawberries; sliced or whole, whipped cream topping or not, it doesn’t really matter. I wouldn’t mind
strawberry socials every week!
This weekend, we welcome Fr. Mike Mayer, who has a close connection to Webster. Please read his introduction
below. He will be joining us as Parochial Vicar at St. Rita Church and living at the rectory. He will be preaching at all the
masses and will provide us a chance to welcome him!
May God bless you this week,
From the Desk of Fr. Mike Mayer . . .
My assignment as Parochial Vicar at St. Rita is something of a “homecoming” for me. I spent most of my
childhood in Webster. My parents were married at Holy Trinity, my older brother and I were baptized at Holy Trinity and
we both graduated from St. Rita School. One thing is sure, however: the Webster my family left fifty years ago is not the
Webster of 2018! But Webster is still “where life is worth living.”
After attending LeMoyne College in Syracuse I entered the Paulist Fathers and studied at the Washington
Theological Union in Washington, DC. I was ordained a transitional deacon in 1981 in Austin, TX, but left the Paulists the
following year. From 1982-1994 I lived and worked in Washington, DC as an administrative aide, a teacher at Gonzaga
College High School, and as the program director for The National Alliance to End Homelessness. I left Washington in
1994 and spent three months as an observer at the Trappist abbey of the Holy Cross in Berryville, VA. In 1996 I was
accepted as a diocesan seminarian in Rochester and lived for two years at Theological College in Washington while
studying at The Catholic University of America. I was ordained a priest in 1998 by Bishop Clark. I tell people that mine
was not a “delayed” vocation, but an “interrupted” one!
My first assignment in Rochester was St. Pius Tenth Church in Chili. In 2001 I was appointed pastor of St.
Andrew and St. Philip Neri Churches in the city. Shortly after St. Philip Neri was closed I also became pastor of the
Church of the Annunciation. St. Andrew and Annunciation eventually merged as Light of Christ Church. In 2011 I served
as assisting priest at St. Pius Tenth and left there in 2013 for Our Lady of Peace Church in Geneva. During my time at
Our Lady of Peace I began programs for men and women, evangelization and rosary-making.
In 2014, I sponsored a basic evangelization training by Adam Janke of St. Paul Street Evangelization and initiated
the Rochester chapter of the organization. Members evangelize at the Rochester Public Market, the Geneva Farmers
Market, Frontier Field and other venues. Several years ago, I initiated The Margaret Home, Inc. in East Rochester. The
Margaret Home is a not-for-profit, long-term residential program for single pregnant women and children. The former St.
Jerome convent is currently being renovated and will house The Margaret Home. I can also be heard regularly on The
Station of the Cross as a guest on The Catholic Current, a show which can be heard on the radio AM 1460 or FM 92.9
Monday through Friday from 5:00 p.m.- 6:00 p.m.
I look forward to my ministry at St. Rita and in Webster. I have always found it a privilege to get to know the
people of a parish and to have the opportunity to share in their joys and sorrows. I pray that we will all continue to grow as
committed disciples “always ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks for a reason for our hope” in Jesus Christ.
Welcome, Father Mike!