To help slow the spread of COVID-19, Bishop Daniel Miehm, in compliance with directives from the Province of Ontario, has asked that all churches, chapels and parish offices be closed until April 7th. The bishop dispenses all Catholics residing in the Diocese from the Sunday Obligation until that date too. Additionally, There will be no public liturgies celebrated during Holy Week.
The annual diocesan collection for Good Friday, the Holy Land, which was scheduled for April 10th, 2020 has now been postponed as per the Holy See until Sunday September 13th, 2020.
Funerals will not be celebrated at St. Joseph Church though a burial service may be offered at the cemetery. A larger celebration and Memorial Mass may be celebrated at a later date.
The priests of St. Joseph Church will privately celebrate Mass for the intentions of the people each day.
The priests of our parish will celebrate the Sunday Mass for the people of St. Joseph Church and for all those affected by COVID-19.
Mass intentions that had been previously booked will be re-scheduled for future dates.
Participate in the Sunday Mass virtually:
All are encouraged to participate by praying an ‘Act of Spiritual Communion’
An Act of Spiritual Communion
I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart.
I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.
The St. Vincent de Paul food bank will continue to serve those in need.
In the meantime, all are encouraged to pray for all those affected by COVID-19, perhaps through this prayer written by Pope Francis:
Pope Francis Offers a Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary for Protection from COVID-19
“O Mary, you shine continuously along our journey as a sign of salvation and hope. We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick, who at the Cross was near to the pain of Jesus, keeping your faith firm.
You, Salvation of the Roman people, know what we need, and we trust that you will provide for those needs so that, as at Cana of Galilee, joy and celebration may return after this moment of trial.
Help us, Mother of Divine Love, to conform ourselves to the will of the Father and to do what Jesus tells us, He who took our sufferings upon Himself, and took up our sorrows to bring us, through the Cross, to the joy of the Resurrection.
We seek refuge under your protection, O Holy Mother of God. Do not despise our pleas – we who are put to the test – and deliver us from every danger, O glorious and blessed Virgin. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.”