Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer may have been a little jumpy on Sunday when she took offense to a local priest’s sermon in Hoboken.
Zimmer is taking a hard line on cop and municipal employee layoffs, which makes it hard to navigate the mile-square without bumping into someone whose job is at your control.
Especially when you’re at the annual Blue Mass honoring local police where Father Vinnie gave his sermon on integrity and one apple being able to spoil the whole bunch, according to accounts.
Zimmer took it personally and told Father Vinnie after the mass that she was offended at his tying city affairs into a homily. But he was giving a template sermon used by the Catholic Church, in part, to address their sex scandals.
“I thought it was an excellent sermon,” Zimmer said today. “It had a profound effect on me.”
But, “I did speak to (Father Vinnie) emotionally after the (mass) and I regret that,” Zimmer said. On Thursday, the two are meeting to “heal” the wounds, Zimmer said, the “destructive divisions” in Hoboken.
Critics said she was “obnoxious” in the moment, actually intimidating the Hoboken priest.
Discussing the event, a former office holder recalled another priest-meets-pol event from the Hoboken past, and it wasn’t Karl Malden as Father Barry.
Former Hudson Freeholder Maurice Fitzgibbons sat with U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (then a state senator) and former state Senator Bernie Kenny (then assemblyman) at the annual Irish Mass before the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
“When the priest got up to give his homily, he went from the love of the Irish to Democrats, pro-choice, abortion,” Fitzgibbons said. “And he’s looking Menendez right in the eye.”
“We took it,” he said of Menendez and the other Dems, “but Bernie Kenny…”
“He’s the only one who wanted to get up (…) and give the priest a piece of his mind. The Irish in him came out.”