Spiritual Resources During this time of Church Closures due to COVID 19 Provincial Emergency

My Dear Brothers and Sisters, the Parishioners of St. Peter’s Parish:

During this Provincial State of Emergency, when our province has been shutdown due to the COVID 19 pandemic, I have been discerning the best way to serve you and provide you with spiritual support in this crisis.

Many parishes have begun to livestream their Masses and I have wondered whether this would be a possible way of serving you.

In considering this option, I have looked at what some other parishes are doing. It seems to me, that if I cannot provide you with a good quality production, it is better not to do so. I also believe that our own Archbishop, Cardinal Collins, is providing the best spiritual resources that all of us can access.

Each morning at 7:30 a.m., Cardinal Collins is livestreaming the celebration of Mass, the Rosary and the Angelus for the day. He will also be celebrating all of the Easter liturgies, which we all love so much, live from the Cathedral. Joining him at these Easter celebrations will be all the priests who live with him and serve at the Cathedral. You can access these events live, or watch them at your own convenience, by visiting the Archdiocesan website at: www.archtoronto.org.

There are many other spiritual resources that you can find on television or on line. The Canadian Catholic network, Salt and Light, has Mass and many other devotions each day.  Vision Television also has many Catholic and Christian broadcasts. Some may also wish to access the American Catholic television station EWTN—the Eternal Word Television Network. All of these provided excellent Catholic resources to feed us at this time when we are unable to visit our parish church and celebrate the Eucharist with our faith community.

Each morning, I am celebrating Mass at 7:30 a.m. privately in our Church for the intentions of the parishioners. If you have any need that you would like me to remember at Mass, you may call and leave a message at the parish office: 416-534-4219. I am still living and working at the parish. If you wish to speak with me, please call. Although the parish offices are closed, if I do not answer when you call, I will call you back as soon as possible.

Please, also, if your situation allows it, remember the financial needs of your parish during this difficult and challenging time. Contributions can be mailed to the parish.

During this time, let us pray for all those who have contracted the coronavirus and their loved ones, that they may have a speedy recovery and know God’s presence in their suffering. Let us also keep in our prayers all those health care professionals who care for them.

Let us all keep before us the central reality of our faith in these uncertain times—Jesus is our Savior.

Please do not hesitate to be in touch with me if you wish. Be assured of my prayers for you and your families and I ask you to keep me in your prayers.

Yours sincerely in Christ,

Rev. Michael McGourty

P.S. I would like to leave you with Pope’s Francis prayer to Mary for the people of Rome during the CONVID 19 pandemic. In his version, the prayer was offered for the Roman people. Where he had said “Roman people,” I have changed the prayer to read “all people.” I hope the Holy Father will forgive me this change to his prayer.

O Mary,
you always shine on our path
as a sign of salvation and of hope.
We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick,
who at the cross took part in Jesus’ pain, keeping your faith firm.
You, Salvation of [All] People,
know what we need,
and we are sure you will provide
so that, as in Cana of Galilee,
we may return to joy and to feasting
after this time of trial.
Help us, Mother of Divine Love,
to conform to the will of the Father
and to do as we are told by Jesus,
who has taken upon himself our sufferings
and carried our sorrows
to lead us, through the cross,
to the joy of the resurrection. Amen.

Under your protection, we seek refuge, Holy Mother of God. Do not disdain the entreaties of we who are in trial, but deliver us from every danger, O glorious and blessed Virgin.