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Saints Peter and Paul Parish
71 South 3rd Street
Brooklyn, NY 11211
Phone: (718) 388-9576 Fax: (718) 388-0714
A Parish of The Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn NY

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Our Lady of Altagracia Honored in Williamsburg
The Tablet, January 26, 2012

Slide Show of Event

Parishioners of SS. Peter and Paul parish, Williamsburg, gathered at Epiphany Church Jan. 21 and processed to SS. Peter and Paul Church with an icon of Our Lady of Altagracia, patroness of the Dominican Republic. Msgr. Agripino Nunez Collado, rector of Mother and Teacher Pontifical University in the Dominican Republic, was the main celebrant of the liurgy. Concelebrating was Father Manuel de Jesus Rodriguez, pastor. They were assisted at the altar by Deacon Juan Carattini and seminarian Carlos Velasquez. The icon of Altagracia is a portrait of Mary and the Child Jesus that was brought to the Caribbean country by Spanish settlers in the early 16th century.

Reference article: The Tablet Diocese of Brooklyn

Parish Marks Feast Day
The Tablet, January 12, 2012


Father Manuel de Jesus Rodriguez, pastor, invited the three men who played the part of the Three Magi, standing left to right, Victor Valdez, Robinson Roman, and Efrain Quiles. Deacon Juan M. Carattini, who assisted with the Mass, can be seen standing far right.

In honor of its feast day, the mostly Hispanic community of Epiphany Church, Williamsburg, welcomed the Three Magi during a Mass and fiesta, Jan. 6.

The Three Kings, portrayed by Robinson Roman, Victor Valdez, and Efrain Quiles, processed through the streets accompanied parishioners, servers and Father Manuel de Jesús Rodriguez, pastor of SS. Peter and Paul parish, which includes Epiphany Church.

Father Rodriguez said the outdoors procession was important because it helps parishioners express their faith freely in a neighborhood that is predominantly Jewish Orthodox.

Mother Jesús Doliente, S.S.V.M., said such a public expression is central to the celebration of the Epiphany.

“For us Catholics, Epiphany is the public honor of Jesus as God,” she said. “The Three Kings represent the leaders of the world and they came to worship Jesus. The Epiphany shows us that we are all invited to the Catholic faith.”

The procession finished at the church, where the congregation filed in for a standing-room-only liturgy.

The hymns of a children’s choir greeted worshippers as they entered the church. They sang “We Three Kings” and other carols during the bilingual service.

Mother Jesús and Johanny Espinal lead the choir that usually sings for the family Mass at SS. Peter and Paul church.


Johanny Espinal leads the children’s choir of St. Peter and Paul parish, during the Three Kings celebration at Epiphany Church.

“The mission of the choir is to help people pray,” Mother Jesús said. “It brings joy to all the adults. The children bring them hope.”

Espinal said the choir requires a lot of sacrifice as they meet for practice every week, however, she said it is well worth the while.

Her daughter, 12-year-old Jacxenie Espinal, is among the members of the choir.
After Mass, Jacxenie and all the other children received a gift in honor of the Hispanic tradition of gift giving on Epiphany.

Father Rodriguez said the gifts were donated by the parish community, members of the fire department, and parishioners of St. Mel, Flushing, and Holy Name, Park Slope.

This year Sisters Jean Philip Brady, C.S.J., and Miriam Anna Morgan, C.S.J., followed the example of the Magi and made a pilgrimage back to the parish for which they worked for over four decades. Sister Jean Philip worked as principal of Epiphany school while Sister Miriam Anna worked as a teacher at the school.

With gratitude for their service, the parish presented the two sisters with plaques of appreciation at the end of the Epiphany Mass.

“Epiphany will always be in our hearts,” Sister Jean Philip told the congregation.

Reference Article:
The Tablet Diocese of Brooklyn

Sisters of St. Joseph Not Forgotten in Epiphany Church
The Tablet, January 12, 2012

Photo © Antonina Zielinska

Sisters Jean Philip Brady, C.S.J., and Miriam Anna Morgan, C.S.J., were honored for decades of dedicated service to Epiphany Church, Williamsburg, now part of St. Peter and Paul parish. Father Manuel de Jesus Rodriguez, pastor, led the community in thanking both sisters who came back to the parish to celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany last Sunday.

Sister Jean Philip, standing second from the right, served the church for 40 years including as principal of Epiphany School. Sister Miriam Anna, standing third from right, served the church for 42 years including as principal of Epiphany School.

“Epiphany will always be in our hearts,” Sister Jean Philip told the congregation.

Reference article:
The Tablet Diocese of Brooklyn

Williamsburg Youth Get Lesson in Serving Others
The Tablet, December 9, 2011

Seminarian Carlos Velasquez and Sisters Mary Our Lady of Peace Villanueva, S.S.V.M., and Maria Corona, S.S.V.M., above, assist youth ministers from SS. Peter and Paul, Williamsburg, in serving food to the men who come to the South Side Community Center for dinner.

South Side Community Center, Williamsburg, is able to continue its Christian mission of feeding the hungry thanks to volunteers like the members of the youth group from SS. Peter and Paul, Williamsburg.

Giving up their free time on Sunday evening, Dec. 4, around 20 young people answered the invitation of Sister Mary Our Lady of Peace Villanueva, S.S.V.M., to serve the men who come to the community center that is connected with neighboring Transfiguration parish.

The volunteers brought with them food donated by their families, much of which was home-cooked, and then served a family-style dinner to the men who came to the center.

“It was fun helping those people who needed help,” said volunteer Francisco Jose Nuñez, 13. “I helped them end their day well.”

These volunteers are one of many groups who come to help South Side. Javier Bosque, executive director, said he asks the parishes around the area to help with bringing food every year from November to April. Each parish is assigned at least one week. During that week, individual ministries from that parish take one day.

Bosque said this is one of the many ministries run out of the center. Others include immigration services, a shelter, food pantry, health workshops, services for domestic workers, and social services. The director said budget cuts have forced some of the salaries, including his own, to be eliminated, making it more difficult to continue to provide these services. However, he said all services are continued due in part to the generosity of volunteers and donors.

As part of their volunteer experience, Bosque gave the young people a tour of the homeless shelter. This provided the youth a glimpse into the life of the people they were helping.

“I think this was a worthwhile experience (for the youth) because they realize how much they have to be thankful for,” said Mother Jesús Doliente, S.S.V.M., who accompanied the group. “In our world people don’t want to show the reality of suffering. This forces (the youth) to face reality.”

She said this volunteer opportunity allowed the youngsters to see the face of Jesus in those who are suffering.
Volunteer Gabriella Espinal, 17, said the experience of serving was beneficial for both the men who ate at the community center and for the volunteers.

“It made me think that I wanted to help more people and give to people who don’t have what they need,” she said.

Sister Mary Our Lady of Peace said South Side afforded the youth in her ministry an invaluable experience.

“It’s good for them to see for themselves that they are needed and to get to see outside of the box – so they can see that they can help here in the heart of Williamsburg,” she said.

To learn more about South Side Community Center, call 718-782-8181 or visit 280 Marcy Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11211.

Reference article:
The Tablet Diocese of Brooklyn

SS. Peter and Paul, Williamsburg pilgrims during WYD
The Tablet, August 25, 2011

Among those outside of the official diocesan delegation were young people from SS. Peter and Paul parish, Williamsburg, who joined nearly 300 other pilgrims from the U.S. on a month-long pilgrimage to Portugal, France and Spain.

SS. Peter and Paul, Williamsburg, WYD 2011

The Servants of the Lord and the Virgin Matara Sisters accompanied them. They logged many miles, stayed in convents, often slept on the floor, ate a lot of bread and were at times faced with the lack of bathing water.

They said this is the first time most of them travelled without their parents.

“When you are away for a month you miss your family,” said Yoana Castro. “When I get to New York I am going to hug my mom and eat a lot of food with no bread.”

Despite being homesick, Castro said she learned that she is capable of more than she thought

“It showed us that we could be independent,” she said. “I learned to have faith in myself and God because without that, there is nothing.”

Edilberto Concepcion said sharing limited space with the same people was difficult but worthwhile. The circumstances created tension between the pilgrims, but the spiritual aspect gave him the strength to react appropriately, he said.

“Instead of punching something, I could say three Hail Marys,” he said.

Sister Mary Our Lady of Peace, S.S.V.M, said she saw strength in the pilgrims through their struggles.

“Instead of complaining about those things, the kids gave them up as an offering to Christ,” she said.

“I learned that God is truly in control and that I must place my complete trust in him,” she said. “He is planting seeds in the hearts of these youth. For in his time ‘He makes all things new.’”

Reference article:
The Tablet Diocese of Brooklyn

June 29, 2006

Our Pastor will be celebrationing his 10th year Anniversary as a priest on the Feast of Ss. Peter and Paul.

Congratulation Fr. Rick we love you.

From all of us at Epiphany and Ss. Peter and Paul Church

April 2005


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