ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI PARISH, KITCHENER marked the 60th Anniversary of the construction of its church with a special Mass of Thanksgiving. A procession outdoors followed, where a new and animated statue of the Saint joyfully praising God for creation has been erected! Timothy Schmaltz, the world-renowned artist who created the statue, was present for the blessing. Many Priests from the Congregation of the Resurrection, who have pastored the Parish from its establishment, were present for the gathering. Again, we offer our thanks and our congratulations.
Heart to Heart
Bishop Crosby's weekly letter to clergy and parishioners in the Diocese.
POPE FRANCIS HAS ANNOUNCED that the next Synod of Bishops will take place in October 2023. The theme for the Synod is: For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation, and Mission. It will be the culmination of a “three-year path” involving the People of God at every level of the Church. Pope Francis will officially inaugurate the event on the weekend of October 9-10. The first phase of the synodal path will take place in each Diocese beginning on the weekend of October 17th, under the leadership of the Bishop. This will be marked in the Sunday liturgies in all our parishes, and most particularly at the 4 p.m. Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of Christ the King. A Synod Committee has been established composed of David and Linda Dayler (chairpersons), Paula Dawson, Bishop Wayne Lobsinger and Monsignor Kroetsch. They will facilitate the synodal process so that as many parishioners as are interested in participating can be engaged. More information will be provided as the process gets underway.
THE FIRST NATIONAL DAY FOR TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION is September 30th. It is a federal statutory holiday enacted by Parliament on June 3rd, of this year. Commemoration of the painful history and ongoing impacts of residential schools is a vital component of the reconciliation process. On September 30th, Masses will be offered in our Parishes to pray that the truth of residential schools be heard and for healing and reconciliation.
THE THIRD ANNUAL NATIONAL CATHOLIC HEALTH CARE WEEK runs from Sunday, October 3rd to Saturday, October 9th. Established by the Catholic Health Alliance of Canada, this year’s celebration seeks to build understanding, connection and trust about the organization’s mission and contribution to the pandemic response in Canada. Through stories, reflection and prayer, the week also seeks to foster healing, and to advance Catholic health care’s commitment to social justice and the values of inclusiveness and compassion in the spirit of reconciliation. In the Diocese of Hamilton, St. Joseph’s Health System embodies these fundamental values! How blessed are we! This year, more than ever, we must celebrate the importance of healthcare in our community.
CONNIE CRAMAROSSA has worked at the Chancery Office of the Diocese of Hamilton for 40 years! She began on September 8, 1981, in the Religious Education Office with Gerry Woodman and Carol Daly. In 1984, she moved to the Printing and Mail Room. There she has served the Church assuring the mail was prepared and sent, received and delivered! Thank you Connie for your happy and helpful presence and service! The Chancery staff offered congratulations and good wishes at a celebration in McNally Hall yesterday afternoon.
THE SUDDEN DEATH of Father John Redmond last month, during a family wedding, was a very sad loss for his family, friends, parishioners, and for the Diocese. Thank you for the messages of condolence and assurance of prayers. They console us, strengthen us, and confirm us in faith! Father Andrew Czarny generously accepted to return to St. Pius X Parish, Brantford, as Administrator, until a Pastor is appointed. We are grateful for his service.
CONGRATULATIONS TO FATHER PATRICK OHL AND FATHER PETER ROBINSON who will be ordained Priests at a Mass celebrated at the Cathedral Basilica of Christ the King tomorrow morning. The Ordination was to have taken place on May 1, 2021, but the pandemic restrictions made that impossible. We had planned to proceed with two Ordinations, but the recent easing of restrictions made it possible for both to be ordained at the same ceremony in the presence of fellow Priests, family and friends. Still, because of the limited restrictions, only invited guests will participate at the event. Both Priests will celebrate their Masses of Thanksgiving this weekend. Pray for God’s blessing on them and their ministry!
THIS WEEK'S WELCOME ANNOUNCEMENT from the Premier of Ontario permits us to open our churches for Masses and other services at 15% of capacity starting today – Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus! This is good news – which comes after a very long and debilitating shutdown! This is Step 1. Step 2, which is foreseen to take place in three weeks, if all the signs are good, should allow us to open to an even higher percent of capacity. One step at a time! Pastors are reminded to observe all the usual protocols in place to assure the safest possible environment in our parishes. Priests and parishioners are also encouraged to get any one of the vaccines, for their own well-being and for the safety of those who worship with us!
THE SHOCKING DISCOVERY OF 215 UNMARKED CHILDREN’S GRAVES at the former Kamloops Residential School has shaken and upset the country. Wounds are reopened and we suffer with our Indigenous brothers and sisters who experienced this dark chapter in our history. Silent memorials have sprung up across the country, including at some of our churches. They remind us to pray for rest for those who were lost, and for healing for those who remain. Statements from the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate are included on the Diocesan website. Statements from Cardinal Thomas Collins (Toronto) and Archbishop Michael Miller (Vancouver) are included here.
THE OUR LADY OF GUADALUPE CIRCLE is a gathering of Indigenous, Religious, Lay, and Bishops, who advise the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops on matters relative to relations with Indigenous Catholics. The Circle published a Pentecost 2021 Message (here), one of their first publications. It is an interesting reflection and a good read.