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Better Know A Parish: Our Mother of Sorrows, Greece, New York

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Parish Name: Our Mother of Sorrows

Location: Greece, New York

Founded: 1829

Diocese: Rochester, New York

Pastor: Fr. Paul Tomasso

Number of Parishioners: 1,400 households

Parish website

What makes your parish different from other parishes?

A deeply historic parish with a rich history, now embarking on a process of revitalizing and rebuilding, after going through many life events: a school closing, a beloved pastor's retirement and a pastor's leaving unexpectedly. The resilience of this parish is a testament to God's presence here!

What’s the most distinguishing characteristic of your church building?

The large, custom made Ave Maria symbol affixed top of the ceiling of the church. It is massive, and draws your attention upward during worship and reminds you always of Our Lady’s watching over us. We also have a 360-degree tour of the church you can see here:

Who is your most interesting parishioner, and what makes them so interesting?

Mr. Al Climer. Al is the ever-energized, ever-present, timeless president of our parish's Men's Club and a fixture at the parish on weekends and other events. Al is now over 90 years old, but always willing to say hello to someone, shake your hand but at the same time tell you what he thinks! Every parish has someone like Al.

What’s the most popular event, ministry, or holiday tradition at your parish?

Our parish summer festival is by far the most popular event at our parish. It has been a fixture in our community for decades. People from all over come for the rides, the food, the raffles, the fellowship, the games, and to spend time with one another. More than 5,000 people attend the 3-day festival. It's our parish's biggest opportunity to evangelize and outreach to the community in addition to raising funds for our parish ministries.

If we asked parishioners what they love most about the parish, what would they say?

The people. It sounds cliché to say this, but we are "salt of the earth" people. There is something about the people of Our Mother of Sorrows Church that is warm, open, and caring for one another. This parish has been through many struggles, together. We have closed a school, lost a pastor, been in financial hardship, but always the people of this parish have continuously come together to support our spiritual home in good times and in struggles; it is stewardship at its best. We have people always willing to serve, to help, to support, to do anything in the name of Christ. We have people willing to pray, to visit, to share the spirit with others.

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