My pastor printed the following letter in our bulletin this week,dated July 31, 2007, in response to Bishop Murphy's letter posted here.
Dear Bishop Murphy,
Thank you for your recent directive and letter to begin preparation for the relocation of our tabernacle from it's present site in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel to the main body of our Church- within the center space of our reredos behind our altar.
I believe that our parish family will be very pleased and over-joyed with your directives.
The relocation of our tabernacle provides me with a special time with our parish family.
I plan to preach at all the weekend Masses on September 22-23 to formally announce the good news that you have directed me to relocate the tabernacle.
Leading up to this announcement, however, I plan to print a letter from myself to our parishioners calling all of us to a special time of prayerful consideration of the importance, role and imperative of silence in our Church.
As well as my letter, I will print articles pointing to he distractions now existent in our Church. The articles I wish to use were tow very fine articles written by Msgr. Jim McNamara in the LONG ISLAND CATHOLIC. I called Msgr. McNamara to ask his permission to print his articles and he was most pleased that I was using them. Along with these articles, I will be printing prayers and devotions directing our attention to the importance of keeping the Church always filled with a quiet reverence where all may pray.
My letter, articles and reflections will be printed all during August leading up to the weekend I will be preaching.
September brings all of our staff back from vacations. (I will be away during August), and I will be very concerned to meet with them, our Liturgy team members and our music ministries. I want to brainstorm with them how we may continue material in the bulletin and even the use of tastefully placed reminders at our Church entrance.
I am concerned that reverence in the Church and the tabernacle itself, be discussed in our classes in our School and within all of our religious education classes. I want to b e sure our youth minister will also make special time in his teachings with our high school students in our LifeTeen program.
Our tabernacle being relocated into the main body of our Church will cause us to re-think some of the events once held in the Church now to be held in our auditorium.
We must also rethink how the present "chapel space " be used. I would like to place and enthroned Bible where the tabernacle was placed. Prayer groups could meet there and not be disturbing to the main body of the Church.
Very important to the relocation of our tabernacle will be Mr. Charles Peters, our parish trustee and the On Site Director of the Church. Charles continues to monitor the physical needs of the Church for me and will be invaluable to the removal of the tabernacle and securing it in the reredos.
Even though our tabernacle has been blessed, I would still like celebrate the Rite for the blessing of a new tabernacle at one of our Sunday 12 noon Masses and if at all possible- and your schedule permits; I would live you to celebrate this moment for us.
Thank you again, for you letter and your support and concern for our parish family.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Rev. Joseph C. Coschignano
Here is the bishop's response. It is dated August 23, 2007
Dear Father Coschignano,
Thank you so very much for your letter of July 31 which I found on my desk upon my return from Italy. I very much appreciate your response and see it as once again a mark of your extraordinarily dedicated and generous service as priest of this diocese.
It pleases me to know that your people have responded positively to this initiative, I believe that it will bring many spiritual benefits to the People of God, who are blessed to have the priests that they do in Center Moriches.
As you move foreword with this, I know that ht Office of Worship is at your disposal as well as Monsignor Brennan for any of the practicalities. If it is possible for me to come and say the Mass and blessing of the tabernacle when it is completed, then know that I will be most happy to come and join you and your parish at that time.
With my prayers and best wishes, I am,
Fraternally yours in Christ,
Bishop of Rockville Centre
I will post about the Mass of restoration of the tabernacle to the center of my church. Consider this an open invitation to attend this wonderful event.