By Linda Viertel
This year marks the 125th year anniversary of Pocantico Hills’ Church of the Magdalene, founded in 1894. Cardinal Timothy Dolan’s celebration of the Mass at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 23rd will culminate a year of celebratory commemorations: “Family Days” at Pierson Park, gatherings at the Sleepy Hollow Country Club and The Briarcliff Manor, and musical concerts featuring the parish’s many talented musicians and choir members—all commemorating the vibrant and welcoming spiritual atmosphere congregants experience at Church of the Magdalene.
At the Church’s first Mass in its new building on Bedford Road, celebrated on Christmas Eve 1894, the original 40 families comprising the church community found a home, thanks to the generous assistance of the Butler family and John D. Rockefeller. Today, Church of the Magdalene is a spiritual home to 550 families from more than a dozen neighboring communities. The Rev. John Vigilanti has broadened the Church’s welcoming atmosphere with a monthly Sunday brunch following Mass. Parishioners serve on the Parish Council, as Religious Education instructors for both children and adults, as Eucharistic ministers, altar servers, lectors and members of the choir. Other congregants are active in social ministry and hospitality, insuring local outreach for those in need.
As Rev. Vigilanti says,” At the Magdalene, we have been blessed in sharing a common mission of celebrating our faith. As we mark our 125th year, we are thankful for the legacy left to us by generations of former parishioners and pastors. While we curate our unique history, we also endeavor to meet the needs of twenty-first century individuals and families.”
Congratulations to Church of the Magdalene on its sesquicentennial.
(Please read Edward R. Sudol’s, Parish Council Member’s, Letter to the Editor for further information and the Church’s Mission Statement in our Letters to the Editor. Also, click on “Where We Worship, March 5th, 2018 at The Hudson Independent for a history of Church of the Magdalene.)