Southern Tier parishes see strong return of Lenten activities


With Lenten activities at their highest level in two years, parishes in the southern part have shown strong signs of continued recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

Programs and initiatives around the level for the recently concluded Lenten season included the following, listed by county:


parish of the Most Holy Name of Jesus at Elmira there were studies of the writings of Thomas Merton; Bible study after the 12:05 p.m. mass on Friday; and a March 27 session on fasting. Additionally, a Living Rosary was held on March 10; a service noting the passion of Jesus through scripture and music was held on March 20; and a Tenebrae service was held on April 13.

Last but not least, the Kindergarten students of the Most Holy Name of Jesus carried out a Lenten project, collecting toilet paper for the parish pantry.


Father Michael Fowler, band pastor of St. Agnes, Avon/St. Rose, Lima/St. Paul de la Croix, Honeoye Falls, participated in an ecumenical initiative through which weekly Lenten reflections were made available as downloadable podcasts.

The social ministry committee of Sainte-Marie, Honeoye/St. Matthew, Livonia promoted an increase in donations to area pantries during Lent.

Saint Luke the Evangelist CRS supported by the parish Bowl of rice — like many other diocesan parishes — as well as Therese Housea ministry of comfort care at Geneseo.


Father Jeffrey Tunnicliff, Parish Administrator of Schuyler Catholic Community, organized seminars on healing which took place on March 10, March 24 and April 7 at St. Benedict Church in Odessa. This series followed a presentation by Father Tunnicliff, “Starting the Good Lent”, on February 17 in Saint-Benoît.

Meanwhile, a holy hour with worship was held every Friday evening at St. Mary of the Lake Church in Watkins Glen.


To Saint Jean Vianney The parish, Stations of the Cross and recitation of the Rosary took place on Wednesday evenings, alternating between St. Mary’s Church in Bath and St. Gabriel’s Church in Hammondsport.

Holy Family Catholic Community conducted a Bible study, focusing on St. Paul’s letter to Philemon, on Wednesdays of Lent at St. Mary’s Church in Dansville.

Our Lady of the Valley Parish used Hallow, a Catholic meditation and prayer app, to reflect on themes surrounding Jesus’ death on the cross. West Steuben County Parish also offered weekly faith-sharing reflections for adults on the Lenten scriptures.

To all saints Corning Parish, Zoom sessions offered to expand understanding of Sorrowful Mysteries; The Lenten Bible study was held on Wednesdays; and Friday evening meals were offered after the Stations of the Cross.

To Sisters Isidore and Maria Torribia Parish of Central Steuben County, Deacon Douglas Farwell has organized various prayer occasions and also led a reflection on the 2021 document of the Bishops of the United States. The mystery of the Eucharist in the life of the Church.


To Holy Trinity/St. patrick parishes, a mission was held March 6-8 at St. James Church in Waverly with Catholic speaker and evangelist Rocco Fortunato.

Also at Holy Trinity/St. Patrick, Living Stations has made a comeback. The largely teenage contingent performed the Passion of Christ on April 1 at St. James, April 8 at Our Lady of Good Counsel Church in Endicott and Good Friday April 15 at St. Margaret Mary’s Church in Apalachin.


To immaculate conception Ithaca Parish, a young adult holy hour was held every Sunday evening at the church. Additionally, the parish continued its tradition of providing collection bags – in which donors put their spare change during Lent – ​​for the benefit of Catholic charities.

In North Tompkins Countypenitential services were combined with holy hours at All Saints Church in Lansing on March 19, Holy Cross Church in Dryden on March 29, and St. Anthony’s Church in Groton on April 2.

To Saint Catherine of Siena in Ithaca, the liturgy committee has drawn up a calendar of Lenten prayer intentions which has been published on the parish website.


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