Dear Parishioners and Friends of Saint Thomas More,
Last Friday on the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, 2 hours after the provincial closure of our churches, I was treated to a wonderful experience overcoming the pandemic.
Hours earlier in a quick pivot responding to the closure announced the day before, we circulated emails inviting you to receive communion outside at the originally scheduled mass time. Expecting only a couple of individuals waiting in the snow, when I flung the door open at 7pm, there were about 30 of you ringed around the steps on the sidewalk, joyously anticipating communion!
The power and grace of the Sacrament was palpably felt, and neatly summed up in the stipulated Prayer after Communion:
We have received this heavenly Sacrament with joy, O Lord:
grant, we pray,
that it may lead us to eternal life,
for we rejoice to proclaim the blessed ever-Virgin Mary
Mother of your Son and Mother of the Church.
Through Christ our Lord.
Our Lady blessed ever-Virgin Mary, indeed "Mother of the Church," has us under her protection and in her prayers!
Don't let the pandemic get the better of you: Join us for outdoor Mass this Sunday, or at least Communion (in which case you should watch an online mass beforehand; see below), trusting in the grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Holy Sacrament to lead you through this dark valley.
- St. Thomas More: Mass at 10:00am on the church steps; Communion at 10:25am
- St. Willibrord's: Mass at 11:15am in front of the Rectory; Communion at 11:40am
And for further inspiration --
Follow the links below to other parishes in the Archdiocese who are providing online Masses, and to some extra content for your continued spiritual enrichment:
- Saint Ignatius of Loyola https://stig.ca/live-stream/
- Saint Thomas à Becket https://www.becket.ca/
- Saint Joseph’s Oratory https://www.saint-joseph.org/en/keep-in-touch-with-the-oratory/
- On TV, the Salt & Light channel is also a great option for attending Mass virtually.
- On gratitude in the midst of loss and suffering (think pandemic), read Tom's 3-sentence reflection
- Read Pope Francis' new year's message on that same Solemnity, explaining faith and "spiritual fruitfulness..born of trials and testing."
Sacraments on *your* front steps
Parishioners who are unable to get to the church to receive Communion or to go to Confession are invited to contact the parish office to request a visit from Father Robert.
Collection Envelopes and Making Online Contributions
Parishioners who use envelopes for their Sunday offerings can drop off their envelopes at the parish office while the church is closed. Regular or one-time donations can also be made at https://www.canadahelps.org/en/dn/50630. Canada Helps is a secure online platform that’s a good alternative to envelopes for parishioners who cannot easily get to the parish to drop off their donations, or even for those who wish to go paperless. The weekly collection is an incredibly important resource for the parish, and your contributions to it support our various programs and efforts to serve our parish and our community.
Blessings in Christ,
Father Robert +