A while back I found myself in a bank down the road in Massapequa. I was driving along Merrick Road and I passed the sign Ocean Financial Federal Credit Union—the Catholic Bank. I couldn’t believe my eyes. I slammed on the brakes, made an illegal U-turn and went into the bank. A “Catholic” bank? I had never heard of this.
When I entered the bank I saw holy statues, rosaries, and….gasp…a crucifix on the wall. I couldn’t believe my eyes. A Catholic bank?
Why I find this so amazing is because of my experience at other banks. Presently St. Martin’s parish keeps all of our money at Chase Manhattan Bank. They are very nice there. The tellers are kind and they know your name and always wish a good morning to you. But what I noticed was that during the holiday season Chase Bank put out all the ornaments of other faiths. I asked “Where is the Christmas crib?” I was met with glossy eyes as if I had just begun speaking in German. I spoke to the manager and asked “Where is the Christian Christmas crib?” but he couldn’t come up with an answer. I was puzzled by the deliberate exclusion of the Christian feast named for the Mass-of-the-Christ.
The Ocean Financial Federal Credit Union is the 4th largest Catholic credit union in the United States. There are more than 70 locations on Long Island and thousands across the US and abroad. And—are you ready for this—you must be Catholic to open an account! They were founded in 1969 by the Knights of Columbus of the Father O’Connell Council in Oceanside, NY. In 2014 the Credit Union brought the Diocese of Rockville Centre into its field of membership.
I asked Father Joe if he knew about them and he said he never heard of them. I am willing to believe that neither have you. So, I wanted you to be aware of this Catholic banking institution. As the bank says: “it matters with whom you do business, whom you support every time you swipe your credit card.”
Their motto is “You can bank on us!” You may find out more about them at the Catholic bank at www.oceanfinancial.org.
You probably think I am advertising for the bank—I am actually! But, even if you don’t bring your money there, go have a look at the most unique bank I have ever seen.
– Fr. Gerard Gordon