Happy 10th Anniversary of the Enthronement as Father and Head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church. In 2015, His Beatitude Patriarch Sviatoslav Shevchuk visited our Parish and Assumption Catholic School in Perth Amboy, NJ. Thank your Beatitude for all that You do for our church worldwide. We are so blessed and honored to have a spiritual father like You.
Сердечно Вітаємо Вас, Блаженніший Святославе з 10-річчям введення Вас на престіл Глави
нашої Церкви. Ми дуже вдячні Богу і дуже радіємо, що ВИ БЛАЖЕННІШИЙ є у нас !!! Дякуємо за відвідування з пастирським візитом у 2015 році нашої Парафії і Української Католицької Школи Успіння Богородиці, м. Перт Амбой, Нью Джерсі, США.
Pastors are incredibly busy people, especially during this Christmas season. Still, Fr. Ivan always finds time to be with his students at the Assumption Catholic school. Today, he took lower grades students and their teachers to the church and explained the story of Christ’s birth by observing the icon of Nativity. The students had a wonderful opportunity to learn more about main characters in the icon: Mary (the Theotokos), baby Christ, Joseph, the angels, the shepherds, the Magi. He pointed to the scene of Christ’s bath and explained why it is important (it shows that Christ was a real baby). He explained why Joseph is sitting away from the Theotokos and Child (he was not Christ’s father). He also identified the devil in the icon and explained that devil is tempting Joseph not to believe in the Incarnation of God. All students learned that through his birth, Christ has healed a wounded humanity and restored our harmony and friendship with God.
In preparation for the Christmas Holiday, Saturday, Nov. 14 until Sunday Dec. 22, our parish will have a special collection of nonperishable goods and children’s new toys for the needy people in Perth Amboy, NJ. Please leave your donation in the Church foyer or downstairs on the bench next to the bulletin board. You may also donate a gift card that will be given only to our parish or school families in need. “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?…” And the King will answer and say to them, “Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even to the least of them, YOU DID IT TO ME.” – Matthew 25:35-40
Sometimes in life we get lucky, and whether layperson or priest, no matter, we get to meet someone special in whom we can see a glimpse of the living Lord. For me that person was Very Reverend Archpriest David F. Clooney, a dear friend, my spiritual father and a great priest. I first met with Fr. David almost twenty years ago at St. Josaphat Ukrainian Catholic Seminary in Washington DC, where he was the rector, mentoring young men as they worked toward the priesthood.
On a hot day in September, just as I arrived from Ukraine to study for the priesthood, Fr. David greeted three fearful students at the door of the seminary with a very strange greeting: “Huey, Dewey, and Louie welcome to America.” I don’t know what the two other students were thinking at that moment, but I thought to myself “Oh my God” this new rector of the seminary is giving me a new name that I don’t like and it scared the hell out of me. Funny, it took me a while to learn about the triplet cartoon characters that Father often referred to in his conversations and the sense of humor of “batya” – Ukrainian for “dad,” the name we seminarians gave him.
And what a great dad he was for all his American and Ukrainian students. Even when seminarians weren’t able to move forward with their studies, struggled and were not responding to the rigorous seminary academic program, he continued to love and support them. Fr. David had a depth of compassion and love that would keep him working with a student as long as he could to help the young man find his way in life, either in the priesthood like in my case or being a good lay Christian man. He supported and cared for us with sensitivity and warmth, with a sense of deep concern for our physical and spiritual well-being.
I’ll always remember his deep love for the Liturgy, fostering our growth in prayer and a love of study.
I’ll remember memorable rides to stores in his small white Volkswagen Passat, my first trip to the hospital after I broke my hand playing soccer and Father giving me a pomegranate to cheer me up on the way back home. What great memories.
After completing seminary and becoming a priest myself, I also observed firsthand what an extraordinary parish priest Fr. David was and how much he was respected among his parishioners and brother priests. In my estimation, he was a deeply spiritual man, a very holy man, a very prayerful man, and he loved being a priest.
As Fr. David’s strength and energy diminished over these past few years of sickness, he remained a presence of humility and gentleness. He was not afraid of death. He continued to draw strength from the Lord whom he served so generously and well for all his life and the words of Jesus “I am the Resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me will live.”
I’m saddened by your death my good friend David, but I am grateful for that one day you touched my life by greeting me “Huey, Dewey, and Louie welcome to America.” You have done your best to make me feel very welcomed and at home in America. Thank You.
In English, the language that you taught me, when we say goodbye it seems so final. Today I don’t say goodbye to you in English, I say to you in my native Ukrainian ‘Dopobachennia,” which means ‘until we meet again.’
‘Dopobachennia,’ good friend Fr. David, until we meet again on the other side.
Celebrating First Penance and a Solemn Holy Eucharist with the two special students of Assumption Catholic school. All ACS students are taught to actively live their faith and a religious education is a part of our daily curriculum.
Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the celebration of First Sacrament of Reconciliation and Solemn Holy Communion was delayed throughout parishes in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Not wanting our students to think they have been forgotten, last Saturday eight students participated in these special sacraments, following all liturgical precautions and keeping with social distancing requirements. It was a blessed day, truly a day the Lord had chosen, and we rejoiced in it.
У зв’язку з послабленням карантину у Америці і завдяки Божій ласці, сьогодні ми відновляємо Божественні Літургії для парафіян та приятелів у нашій церкві.
Ми намагатимемося робити все можливе, щоб розмістити всіх у храмі, але ми ЗОБОВ’ЯЗАНІ дотримуватися адміністративних вказівок уряду і медичних рекомендацій, які теж є затверджені нашим Архиєпископом.
1. Усі присутні в церкві ПОВИННІ мати маску, яку потрібно взяти з собою з дому.
2. Також присутні на богослужіннях повинні дотримуватися соціальної дистанції між собою. Прошу займати тільки зазначені місця у лавках, які є позначені і відкриті, та дотриматись соціальної дистанції у 1,5-2 метри.
3. Усі вірні повинні використовувати засоби для дезінфікування рук, які є при вході до церкви.
4. Богослужіння буде відбуватися без хору і книжок у лавках. Буде співати тільки дяк а вірні можуть допомагати.
5. Святе Причастя . о. Іван використовуватиме дві ложечки для Св. Причастя, які будуть дезінфікуватися спиртом з відповідною концентрацією після кожного причасника. Священик буде мати захисну маску. Уділяючи Святе Причастя, вірні мають широко відкривати вуста і не торкатися вустами ложечки.
6. Після Богослужень не скупчуйтесь у притворі чи на вулиці. Пам’ятайте про заборону контактувати з іншими людьми.
7. Посвячені вербні галузки можна буде отримати на вулиці. Кошик з галузками знаходиться на центральних сходах.
8. Вірним, які мають застереження щодо відвідування церкви, особливо людям, віком від 65 років і старшим, або тим, які мають проблеми зі здоров’ям, ми рекомендуємо залишатись дома.
9. Відновляється сповідь. Якщо вам потрібно поговорити чи навідати священика, зверніться до парафіяльної канцелярії або зателефонуйте священику безпосередньо 2023682408.
Прошу з розумінням ставитись до всіх вимог ситуації пандемії. Нехай береже нас усіх Господь.
Jesus, You teach us to “fear no one,” but we are afraid, body and soul. There is so much fear in our world these days, from pandemic to civil unrest. It is time to cling to Christ, the Rock of ages, and His Church built upon Peter, a man transformed by the Holy Spirit. Are you clinging yet? I hope so. It’s been a challenging time but today I WELCOME you back to your spiritual home.
In order to protect everyone, and to accommodate the needs of our Parishioners while meeting the social distancing guidelines and other guidance of health officials, we will be implementing the following steps at every Liturgy:
1. While in Church, face masks or coverings MUST be used at ALL TIMES except when receiving Communion. Please bring your own mask.
2. Social distancing must be observed between all present at the services. No handshakes, hugs or kissing when greeting one another. No touching or kissing of icons, venerate them with a simple bow.
3. Some pews have been cordoned off and the pews that are open have been marked with blue tape indicating where people may sit. Please note that family groups may sit together and are not bound by social distancing. All should remain in place once seated. The church and pews are sanitized and cleaned regularly.
4. Hand sanitizer is available at the entrance of the church. You are also encouraged to bring your own small sanitizer.
5. Collection Plate Location: Two Baskets for both collections (2) are located at each side of the church back wall; no baskets will be passed at this time. You can place your gracious contribution into a basket before or after Liturgies.
6. All Hymn Books and Liturgy Books have been temporarily removed from church. You are welcome to bring your own prayer book.
7. The cantor will assist the priest by leading the faithful in worship. There will be limited use of singing by congregation.
8. Communion will be given as usual out of the chalice, but once you approach the chalice, lower your mask, tilt your head back and open your mouth so that Fr. Ivan can pour the gifts in your mouth without touching. Father will use two spoons in rotation. Each spoon will be sanitized immediately after each communicant by pure alcohol (at least 60-50%). People will process to receive communion while maintaining social distance following marks on the floor.
9. The floor is taped to reflect appropriate social-distancing of 6 ft. for the Communion line. We ask communicants from the center pews of the church to be first in line for Holy Communion. Then communicants from the side pews to follow. Please, no cutting through center aisle pews.
10. Dismissal will be permitted out the front and side doors; The main and side doors will be open for exit after the Liturgy.
11. There will be no in-person coffee hour fellowships.
12. Parishioners who are sick or symptomatic must stay at home.
All these procedures were established for your protection. Thank you for your cooperation and please pray for each other.
Dearly beloved parishioners of Assumption church, in my sixteen years as a priest, this is the first time I have celebrated Holy Lent, Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday services without the people of God in God’s house. Regardless of the restrictions of this time due to the Covid-19 coronavirus, I continue to pray and offer services for you every day. Please remember, that while we cannot be filling our beautiful church together, we can still worship together, by you joining our live streaming services on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ivan.turyk
Our Archbishop Borys and bishop Andriy encourage everyone to take time for prayer on Sundays and to take advantage of the live-streamed Liturgies in our parish or the cathedral in Philadelphia.
To make your online worship experience an expression of our “Church of the Home,” please consider the following:
• Watch the services in a special place of your home.
• Prepare yourself as if you were coming to the church, perhaps even dressing as you usually do for service at the church.
• Turn off distractions such as other media and your phone.
• Most importantly, tune in spiritually as participants, not just observers. This is still your church!
The responses to our streaming Lenten services and Sunday’s Liturgies have been overwhelmingly positive and grows each week. At this time, I want to thank Deacon Paul Makar, Thomas Dochych, Anna Lawrence, Sub deacon Alex Bricki and his mother Terri for helping with cantering all our services. Thanks to our secretary Anna for her work at the parish office, to Maria Alvarez for changing altar linens and Colette Baginsky for baking the Artos bread. I am grateful to you for remembering me in your prayers and for enthusiastically responding to my phone calls. I also want to thank all of you who have continued your financial support of our parish. Your labors, time, and offerings did not go unnoticed but instead are greatly appreciated! May the Risen Lord bless you all!
Here are some of the Testimonials written by parishioners of Assumption Church about + Metropolitan-Archbishop Emeritus Stephen Sulyk, former Pastor of Ukrainian Catholic Church of the Assumption, Perth Amboy, NJ 1962-1981
By: Mrs. Melanie Fedynyshyn.
I was very close to my grandmother, Melania Slahetka, and when she died of a massive heart attack in 1974, I was beside myself. Msgr. Sulyk offered words of comfort which I never forgot. In essence, he explained that her dying on the eve of Palm Sunday should provide me with great consolation knowing that the upcoming week would lead to the Resurrection. He told me to focus on how Jesus would be bringing my grandmother with Him to heaven. He explained that Holy Week was the best time of the year to die, adding that he would wish that for himself. As it happens, Archbishop Sulyk died on the very same day, April 6, forty-six years to the day.
By: Mrs.Marcella Massopust.
When I first met Fr. Sulyk, I was moderator of the Sodality of the Blessed Virgin Mary. We began our journey caring for the youth of the parish. We worked on many projects involving the religious education of the girls in the Sodality. I found Fr. Sulykto be a deeply religious priest. The education of the youth was very important to him.
He baptized both my children and they received the Sacrament of First Holy Communion from him.
He was left with the task of completing the newly constructed Ukrainian Assumption School. For the first years of the operation of the school, he gave up his rectory to the Missionary Sisters of the Mother of God to establish a convent.
An excellent administrator, he was able to open the doors of the school on September 1, 1963. My two children: Katherine and Anton both attended and graduated from the school in the 1980’s.
He was very conscientious with the church’s funds. My husband, Anton was president of the PTA. They worked together very hard with the sisters on many projects for the benefit of the school. He always appreciated the work of all the families of the parish. He took on the task of educating the children in both religion and academics.We went to Philadelphia to witness Msgr. Sulyk’s ordination as an Archbishop Metropolitan realizing that he would face new challenges in the Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy and prayed for his success. Archbishop Stephen Sulyk’s hard work and dedication will always be remembered. Eternal Memory.
By: Rev. Deacon Paul Makar
The Assumption parish has a great deal of gratitude, love and admiration for Archbishop Steven Sulyk. I can remember the nearly 20 years that he spent here in Perth Amboy. His achievements and successes were quite significant. He also had his share of difficult challenges to overcome. I remember him telling me that it wasn’t easy for him in the early goings of his pastorate, taking on the parish committee which managed the parish. His job was to establish a new management platform forming a corporation giving the pastor control of the parish, and there was opposition. During this same time period he began a major project to complete the construction of our new parish school. He did this in two stages beginning with the 1st floor and then the 2nd. In addition, he converted the original rectory into a convent. During this interim period, before the completion of the new rectory, he took up temporary residency in the school. He also renovated the interior of the church with superb art work: beautiful mosaics and frescoes. I can’t forget the beautiful mosaic shrine to the Mother of God between the rectory and church and a large mosaic of the Resurrection of Christ at our refurbished cemetery. I am thankful to our Heavenly Father for sending us Fr. Stephen Sulyk and that I was able to witness these accomplishments. These achievements will never be forgotten! I can also remember when I was an altar boy. For several years in a row, he would rent a station wagon and take a small group of us to our Cathedral in Philadelphia to see the ordinations to the diaconate and priesthood. It is interesting because 15 years later, Archbishop Stephen’s replacement as pastor in Perth Amboy would be Rev. Roman Dubitsky. Also, during Archbishop Stephen’s time in Perth Amboy, my wife and I received the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony. Afterwards our three children received the Sacraments of Initiation. Not too long after leaving Perth Amboy for his new assignment, Metropolitan-Archbishop Stephen came back to Perth Amboy and ordained me a deacon. He was a deeply spiritual man. I remember a time during my early ministry as a deacon, I would accompany him on parish visitations and pilgrimages. I would usually be driving. During our travels, he would always have his Chaso Slav to recite his daily prayers. He was active outside his role as a pastor. He also loved to play golf and go bowling. I can remember seeing him with Fr. John Stevensky (his assistant), when I went with my father to bowl at the Majestic Lanes. He was an avid golfer and attended many of our Eparchial golf outings that Fr. Roman Dubitsky and I would arrange at the Ramblewood CC in Cherry Hill, NJ. He was a very special individual. May his memory be everlasting! He will be missed by all who knew him and never forgotten in Perth Amboy. He was truly a gift sent to the parishes of our Archeparchy by God. Rest in peace. Job well done!
By: Mrs. Phyllis Kwiecinski
Archbishop Emeritus Stephen Sulyk, my former pastor and friend of sixty years to myself and my family. A person of goodness and generosity to all he knew which were reminders of the true meaning of God. Thank you for being the blessing you were to all who knew you. You will Always be with us.