98 South 2nd Ave.
Manville, NJ 08835
Phone: (908) 725-0072

My Dear Parish Family,

"Count your blessings!" How often people think of blessings only in terms of things such as winning the lottery, owning a nice home, having a secure job, etc., etc. In teaching the Beatitudes, Jesus reverses our normal expectations of what will make us happy (blessed) in this world. It is not what we have but who we are, how we live and how we relate to others. The Beatitudes call for a radical rethinking of our needs, wants and pleasures. Real happiness lies in the gift of blessedness that only God gives. Our parish has been blessed in many ways. Listed below are some of the recent parish events:

A Christmas concert prepared by Maryann Zarbetski, one of our organists, was presented and enjoyed the evening of Epiphany.
Our Polish community celebrated the Christmas season with a Christmas Nativity show known as a "Jaselka". It was prepared by the children attending our Polish School.

We began 2018 with our annual "koleda" (home blessings). Over a five-week period, 374 out of 762 households were blessed -- 49% opened their homes to welcome, bond and pray with their parish priest for peace in their homes, strength in their faith and the blessing of many graces during the New Year.

The Radio Maryja Rally "Oplatek" was held on January 21st. Radio Maryja is run by Polish Redemptorists that broadcast throughout the US, Canada, Europe and Russia. Visitors from New York, Philadelphia, Linden and Perth Amboy joined together for a time of prayer and fellowship. Our guest speaker and main celebrant was Fr. Grzegorz Woś C.Ss.R. who works at the Radio Maryja and the TV station TRWAM.
A very successful Pork Roast Dinner, with a VISA Raffle Drawing, was sponsored by the Knights of Columbus on the last Sunday in January.
On February 2nd, we joined in celebrating the World Day of Prayer for Consecrated Life by giving prayerful thanks for the religious women and men serving God. We also celebrated the Feast of the Presentation, known as Candlemas Day, the day on which candles are blessed symbolizing Christ who is the light of the world. The blessed candles were used the following day to bless throats during the Memorial of St. Blaise.
Our Confirmation students were blessed with a retreat day conducted at Sacred Heart worship site on February 3rd by Fr. Richard Bennet C.Ss.R. The day of reflection on the Gift of Confirmation ended with the presentation of our 12 Confirmation candidates to the parish at the 6PM Mass. The Confirmation liturgy will be held this year on May 2nd at St. Ann's Parish in Raritan.
The First Communion class was presented to the parish the following day on February 4th during the 10AM Mass.
World Day of Marriage was celebrated on February 11th in both churches of our parish. Our married couples participated in the "Rite of Holy Hands of Matrimony" that recognizes the value and the importance of the sacrament of marriage and married life.
As part of the parish celebration for World Day of the Sick on Tuesday, February 13th, Fr. Wojciech Kusek C.Ss.R. anointed those who wished to receive the sacrament of the sick during the 11AM mass for healing and strength to bear the cross of illness.

With Ash Wednesday and the sign of the cross, we enter into the Lenten season that is a time of reflection and deeper understanding of the blessed value of Jesus' suffering, death and resurrection. On his Cross, Jesus won for us eternal life and opened for us the gates of heaven so we can participate in his countless blessings.

I invite you to contemplate upon Jesus' passion and participate in the Way of the Cross:
- Tuesdays at 7:00PM in English
- Fridays at 6:30PM in Polish at Sacred Heart
- Fridays at 4:30PM in the Christ the King -
- "Gorzke Żale" in Polish on Sundays at 5:00PM in Sacred Heart.
- Outdoor Stations of the Cross will begin on Tuesday, March 13, at 6:00 PM starting at Christ the King and proceeding to Sacred Heart. After the conclusion, please join us for soup, salad and bread in the Sacred Heart auditorium. In case of inclement weather, we will gather at Sacred Heart Worship Site at 6:00PM.

Mark your calendar for our Parish Lent Retreats:
The English Retreat will begin on Saturday evening, March 3rd and continue through Wednesday, March 7th.
The Polish Lenten Retreat will take place March 18th through 21st

Our Parish Retreat is a time of renewal of the foundations of our faith and a time to strengthen our hope. Through fasting, prayer and almsgiving, let us prepare ourselves for the Holy Triduum and the Easter Season. Let us renew ourselves, our families and our parish.

May God Bless you and your families as you grow in faith through this year's Lenten journey. You are a true blessing from God to the CTR Parish, for all that you do!

In gratitude and prayer,
Fr. Stan

Come one, come all! What better way of preparing for Easter than to join your fellow parishioners during our Lenten Retreats! Here is your chance to become closer to Jesus and reflect on his words. Our parish offers two: one in English and one in Polish so you have a choice or could attend both.

Father Matthias M. Sasko of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate will be our guest officiator for the English retreat. The Franciscan Friars are a world-wide Marian-Franciscan Religious Congregation. They were founded in 1990 in order to continue in the Church the Marian-Franciscan charism of St. Maximilian M. Kolbe, which is that of conquering the whole world for Christ through Mary Immaculate. Fr. Matthias M. Sasko has been a member of the Congregation since 2005. He was ordained a priest in 2013. He is currently assigned to Our Lady Chapel in New Bedford, MA. Our English Lenten Retreat begins on Saturday evening, March 3rd and ends on Wednesday evening, March 7th.
  Father Pawel Drobot, will be the celebrant for the Polish Retreat. The dates are March 18th through March 21st and Sacred Heart Church. Father Pawel is coming to the United States from Krakow, Poland, where he is the director of the Redemptorist Spiritual Center. While in the US, he will also be visiting and preaching in Perth Amboy and Chicago, Illinois.

Soon we will be entering the liturgical season of lent. It is time to begin thinking and praying about how we as Catholics can bring ourselves closer to God. For an extensive review of lent, Lenten practices, and ideas for how to make this time more meaningful, consult such websites as (Our Sunday Visitor). This article highlights some of the components of that website.

The Lenten practices of fast and abstinence include abstaining from eating meat on Ash Wednesday and all Fridays during lent. This applies to all Catholics age 14 and older. On days of fast, one full mean and two lesser ones are allowed on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday for Catholics ages 18-59. The two small meals should not equal the full meal. Coffee, tea, and water are permitted throughout the day.

Each year, Catholics begin lent by deciding what they might give up or sacrifice. Some deny themselves of favorite foods, entertainment, and/or something that means a great deal to them-a real sacrifice. While this shows will power and devotion to God, another consideration is increasing one's spiritual life by attending daily Mass, saying the rosary every day, attending Stations of the Cross and the parish retreats, and reading passages of the Bible on a regular basis. Finally, why not offer your help in one of the parish ministries? There is much that needs to be done to make our parish function smoothly. Help is needed making pierogis, donating food and clothing for the needy in our parish, decorating the churches, and so on. A few hours a week devoted to our parish brings a sense of community. If you can financially, determine to increase your alms-giving to the parish in your weekly envelopes.

Take advantage of these 40 days of lent to focus on the suffering of Jesus and rededicate yourself to living a life more in union with how Jesus lived his life while on earth and following his example of love, peace, and care for others.

  1. Slow Down - Set aside 10 minutes a day for silent prayer or meditation. It will revitalize your body and your spirit
  2. Read a good book - You could choose the life of a saint, a spiritual how-to, an inspirational book or one of the pope's new books.
  3. Be kind - Go out of your way to do something nice for someone else every day.
  4. Get involved - Attend a Lenten lecture or spiritual program.
  5. Volunteer at your parish - Whether it's the parish fish fry, cleaning the church or helping with the food drive, it will give you a chance to help others.
  6. Reach out - Invite an inactive Catholic to come with you to receive ashes on Ash Wednesday.
  7. Pray - Especially for people you don't like and for people who don't like you.
  8. Tune out - Turn off the television and spend quality time talking with family members or friends.
  9. Clean out closets - Donate gently used items to the St. Vincent de Paul Society.
  10. Donate — Google "Catholic Missions." Then pick one mission and decide how you can help by sending money, clothing or supplies.

  • Pray together. Even if it's just an Our Father or Hail Mary, it unites the family.
  • Let each family member mention one person or problem that they would like to pray for in a special way at dinnertime.
  • Take the kids grocery shopping for the poor. Let them help you bring the food to your parish pantry or the local food bank.
  • Let children light a candle at church for people throughout the world who are sick or hungry.
  • Sample Lenten food favorites, such as hot cross buns or pretzels. If you're really adventurous, check the Internet for recipes and make your own!
  • Check your diocesan newspaper for the location of a Passion play. Take family members and friends.
Each year Catholics are invited to have their throats blessed on the feast of Saint Blaise. Do you know, however, why this happens and how this ceremony in connected to this particular saint?
If not, you are about to find out!
Saint Blaise was born in Sebastea, Armenia. He was a doctor who had an amazing ability to heal both people and animals. That was not all. He also was a spiritual healer and assisted people with healing their souls. At one point in his life, Saint Blaise left his career and spent time in a cavern where he prayed.
When the bishop of Sebastea died, Saint Blaise was appointed bishop. He led the people by example displaying virtue and service to God. Many attested to the miracles Saint Blaise performed which resulted in people coming from many areas to cure them and their animals.
Unfortunately, in 316, the Emperor Licinius commanded the governor to persecute all Christians.

Saint Blaise was arrested, interrogated, and scourged. As he was led to jail, a mother approached Saint Blaise with her young son, who was choking on a fishbone. Saint Blaise cured the boy, but   was still imprisoned because he would not renounce his Christian religion. Shortly afterwards, he was beheaded.
Because of Saint Blaise’s miraculous ability to cure, he is considered a protector against illnesses of the throat and injuries. Hence, we have the annual blessing of the throats which is often done by holding two candles held in a crossed position by the priest over the throats of the members of the congregation. The priest recites the words, “May Almighty God at the intercession of St. Blaise, Bishop and Martyr, preserve you from infections of the throat and from all other afflictions.” and makes the sign of the cross.
Now you know the whole story!


2018 CTR Parish Calendar (27MB)


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Lenten prayer

"So far today, God, I've done all right. I haven't gossiped, I haven't lost my temper. Haven't been grumpy, nasty or selfish. I'm really glad of that. But in a few minutes, God, I'm going to get out of bed; and from then on, I'm probably going to need a lot of help."


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PO Box 924, Manville, NJ 08835
Phone:(908) 725-0072

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last updated: 11.03.2020