THE FEAST OF THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD which is celebrated this Sunday marks the end of the Christmas season. Thank you for the greetings and gifts received throughout the season! Ordinary Time begins on Monday and continues until Ash Wednesday. Several Parishes in the Diocese of Hamilton have arranged to live-stream Masses during the Provincial lockdown. Check your Parish website to see if your Parish does so. Mass from the Cathedral Basilica will be televised on Cable 14 at 2:00 p.m. on Sundays.
Heart to Heart
Bishop Crosby's weekly letter to clergy and parishioners in the Diocese.
CHRISTMAS MIDNIGHT MASS FROM THE CATHEDRAL BASILICA will be broadcast again this year. The Mass will be preceded by a Carol Service beginning at 11:30 p.m. Both the Mass and the Carol Service will be broadcast by Salt + Light Media and shared with CHCH TV. Due to COVID restrictions, all seating for Midnight Mass has already been reserved. Join us for the broadcast and share in the joy of this Christmas feast!
WISE MEN WEAR MASKS! So do good shepherds! This year's Christmas Crib at the Chancery has a COVID-19 pandemic addition. The Magi and the shepherds, who are not part of the Holy Family "bubble" are wearing masks! Since they cannot follow the social distancing protocol, the masks are mandatory! Thanks to the Christmas decorators for reminding us of our responsibility to care for one another especially during these dangerous times!
ST. BENEDICT CHURCH IN MILTON is nearing completion. The Mass of Dedication was originally scheduled for this coming Sunday. Because the church is still in the final stages of completion it was decided to continue completing the work, to begin celebrating Mass in the church prior to Christmas, and to reschedule the Mass of Dedication to early July, 2021. Congratulations to Father Jim Petrie and his team for a remarkably beautiful church which will serve parishioners in Milton for years to come!
THE ILLUMINATION OF THE FOUR HORSEMEN OF THE APOCALYPSE in The Saint John's Bible displayed in the Bishop Farrell Library and Archives, gives some insight into our attitude in face of modern day threats: tanks, oil rigs, symbols of nuclear disaster, and microscopic images of viruses and diseases! Amidst the chaos, however, are thin slivers of holographic foil – the light of Christ still with us. The artist, Donald Jackson intended it as “a portrait of environmental, human, and cosmic destruction”. As the pandemic impacts us all not just as a health crisis but in connection to our environmental, social and economic priorities, we can also see the value of the pastoral care provided in our ministry to others.
THE SACARAMENT OF CONFIRMATION, postponed in the spring due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is being celebrated in our Parishes under strict pandemic protocols. Parish Priests have been delegated to administer the Sacrament. The celebration at St. Gregory the Great Slovenian Parish, Hamilton took place last Saturday. Everyone followed the protocols carefully – and the confirmandi will always have happy memories about the important celebration. Thanks to all who are assuring the safe and joyful celebration of Confirmation this autumn!
NEW PRIESTS AND NEW PASTORS serving in the Diocese of Hamilton will participate in orientation and formation sessions over the coming weeks. The sessions include presentations on the diocesan governance structure, screening protocols, misconduct policies and procedures, communications and privacy policies. It also provides information about the history of Catholic schools in Ontario, and ministry expectations in elementary and secondary schools and universities. The Growing In Faith, Growing in Christ catechetical program is featured. Youth ministry, sacramental preparation, diocesan policies, RCIA, and liturgical celebrations including an overview of the liturgical books available are also covered. They also learn about financial and administration policies, including working with Finance Councils and Parish Pastoral Councils, professional conduct and collaborative ministry. Marriage Preparation, marriage forms, dispensations, and the Diocesan Marriage Tribunal are part of the process. Finally, speech and language expectations are also addressed. Thanks to Monsignor Murray Kroetsch, Jim Long and other Diocesan personnel for the care and attention you give to the new Priests and Pastors who are beginning their ministry in the Diocese!
THIS IS NATIONAL CATHOLIC HEALTH CARE WEEK 2020, and it is sponsored by the Catholic Health Alliance of Canada (CHAC)! The theme of the week is AWAKEN: Revealing the Courageous Gift of Catholic Health Care. A few facts about Catholic Health Care in Canada: There are 129 Catholic health care organizations in Canada, offering 19,575 beds. Staff numbering 88,000+ serve more than 5 million people annually, with a 6 billion dollar operating budget! Catholic Health Care in Canada is inspired by the example of the Founding Sisters – visionary women who for generations advocated and cared for the most destitute people in their communities. Their ministry has become the mission of a multitude of leaders and this mission makes the Canadian health care system and Canadian society stronger! What a blessing you are for us!