ATLANTIC CITY — On Wednesday, Feb. 22, The Parish of Saint Monica in Atlantic City held a special Mass for Businesses to specifically pray for the success of the business community. The Mass, held at Saint Nicholas of Tolentine Church, was attended by more than 100 business leaders and community members.
The idea for this event grew out of a worker Mass held in the parish last year, in association with members from Unite Here Local 54. Soon after, business leaders approached pastor Father Jon Thomas with the idea and earlier this year more than 50 businesses in the area received invitations from Father Thomas, co-owner of the McDonald’s in Atlantic City, Anthony Mack, owner of The Irish Pub, Cathy Burke, and executive director of the Gormley Funeral Home, John McAvaddy.
In his homily, Father Thomas drew from psalms noting that if “we do not first ask God to bless our efforts, then our labor will be in vain… When we acknowledge God in the use of his gifts, God is with us.”
He also reiterated that the church, much like it is for the worker, is very much a supporter of businesses. “While the church warns against the idolatry of money, it has always been a supporter of the building of community … and recognizes the critical role our businesses play in the success of our communities.”
“Businesses employ their fellow man, giving them gainful employment and supporting their human dignity,” said Father Thomas. However, he also warned that businesses have a responsibility to their workers, to see them more as mere commodities.
Among the Atlantic City companies attending the Mass were representatives from Resorts, Tropicana, Borgata, Cooper Levenson, B&B Parking, Masterpiece Advertising, Dock’s Oyster House and associated restaurants, McDonald’s, Ferriozi Concrete Company, The Steel Pier, The Irish Pub, White House Sub, Princeton Antiques and Books, The Iron Room, Jingoli Construction, Atlantic City Partners and several more small business owners.