St. John Kanty Parish celebrated a new beginning as it prepares to commemorate the past. Bishop Richard J. Malone installed Father Michael H. Burzynski as administrator of the Buffalo church, which will hold its 125th anniversary later this year.
Father Burzynski is no stranger to the Broadway neighborhood where St. John Kanty rests. It was his father's parish, and his grandfather owned a grocery store on Deshler Street.
Father Burzynski will take care of the administrative duties at St. John Kanty and its second worship site, St. Adalbert, while remaining pastor of St. John Gualbert Parish in Cheektowaga. He pointed out the two parishes will not be merging.
"It's going to keep me off the streets at night," he said after Mass. "I'm pleased. I'm glad to do it. People have been wonderful here."
Despite having had a stroke four years ago followed by cardiac surgery, the 63-year-old priest said he is up to the job. During Mass, Bishop Malone thanked him and other priests who generously take on assignments in addition to their pastorates.
The installation Mass took place on Trinity Sunday. The bishop encouraged all who were present to spread the hope of the Gospel to other people. "I believe right now the world is in a terrible crisis of meaning. People don't know where to look for real deep meaning in their lives. You and I know that meaning is found in Jesus Christ, our Lord, His Gospel and His Church. So, share with people the reason you are a Catholic and why you find that gives tremendous meaning and hope in your life," he said.
To celebrate the 125th anniversary a Mass will take place on Nov. 19. Bishop Malone will be principal celebrant. Dinner and dancing will follow the Mass at the Millennium Hotel in Cheektowaga with music provided by Rare Vintage. Commemorative coffee mugs and pint glasses with the church logo will be sold at all of the anniversary events.