Share Lent & Covid19

The COVID19 crisis that we find ourselves in today gives us a sense of the fear and insecurity that so many of our brothers and sisters in the global south live on a regular basis. Each lent we show of concern and support for these brothers and sisters by supporting the Share Lent campaign of Development & Peace – Caritas Canada.

This year a crucial part of Share Lent, the Solidarity Sunday collection that would have been taken up on (DATE HERE), will have to be postponed to a later date to be determined once the COVID19 crisis is over.

Until that later date is announced, I encourage the faithful to still show their generosity on Solidarity Sunday by giving to Development and Peace – Caritas Canada in the following ways:

  1. Donate directly on-line at devp.org/give
  2. By phone at: 1-888-664-3387
  3. Mail your donation to: Development and Peace, 1425 Rene-Levesque Blvd. 3rd floor, Montreal, QC, H3G1T7

Your support for Share Lent is especially important in a global context where the potential spread of COVID19 to the global south in a significant way would be devastating. In more than 30 countries, Development and Peace supports the integral human development of communities that makes them more resilient in the face of challenges like COVID19.

In addition to making a financial gift as you are able, you are also invited to visit the Share Lent website: www.devp.org/sharelent  to enjoy the many videos and other online Lenten resources that can help make your Lenten journey a meaningful one.

Even though we may not gather together in a physical church over the next while, this period of time can be a great testimony to our faith and the presence of God witnessed in our care for our neighbor, including our brothers and sisters in the Global South who in many cases are the most vulnerable in our world today. 

Development and Peace Share Lent Collection – an update on the situation

During these uncertain times because of the COVID-19 crisis, Development and Peace has made the decision to cancel or postpone all of its in-person meetings and events across Canada. Lent is a vital time of year for the organization, and so we invite you to participate to our virtual Share Lent campaign and act in solidarity with our partners in the Global South and the most vulnerable populations that will be all the more affected by this pandemic. This Lent, give from the heart. Donate to Development and Peace today by making a DIRECT donation:

  1. Online: devp.org/give
  2. By phone:   1-888 664-3387
  3. By mail : 1425 Rene-Levesque Blvd W, 3rd floor, Montreal, QC, H3G 1T7

Thank you for your generosity.

FREE ACCESS to Living Faith Reflections

Living Faith is offering free online access to Living Faith Daily Catholic Devotions, Le Fe Viva and Living Faith Kids for the rest of March in order to help you feel at peace during this health crisis.

Click here to access the January/February/March 2020 issue of Living Faith.

Click here to access the January/February/March 2020 issue of La Fe Viva.

Click here to access the January/February/March 2020 issue of Living Faith Kids.

Join Us Online on Sunday, March 22 for Mass

We know many of you are feeling disconnected and sad that you cannot attend Mass as usual because of the COVID-19 pandemic. We feel the same way as you. That’s why we have created our YouTube Channel: Holy Family Parish London. Click here to access it.

This channel is our online space to worship together (almost) every day. We hope to have this Sunday’s Mass available for you on March 22 by 8:30 a.m. Please subscribe to our channel and click on the notification bell to ensure you receive all our latest videos Masses.

May God’s love and peace be with you all.

Online Giving

If you’re not signed up for Pre-Authorized Giving to give to the parish on a consistent basis, but you’d like to continue to give to the parish, you can give online at https://holyfamilylondon.ca/donate/. In addition, we are now set up for automatic “Interac e-Transfer”. Simply set up the email address ‘hfparish@dol.ca’ as a recipient, choose the amount you wish to give, and press send! No password is required.

As always, your generosity is appreciated, and it will be especially important in these coming weeks.

Note to parishioners, March 19, 2020

My dear sisters and brothers in Christ,

I am pleased to be able to connect with you following this past weekend of Sunday mass and building closure. I missed you and your encouraging presence. These past few days, our Chief Shepherd, Bishop Fabbro, in consultation with his senior advisors and with local health authorities, has issued very challenging directives for us to follow up until April 30, if not beyond. We will not be able to gather for Sunday celebrations, including the great feast of Easter. We will not be able to gather for weddings, funerals, baptisms and for all of the many processes that have enriched our lives so much. They include, Alpha, Bible studies, Connect groups, prayer groups, social events, devotional prayer, faith formation, disciple-making processes, and just the simple pleasure of greeting one another as friends in the Lord. We are even locked out of senior residences and nursing homes, the people we have grown to love and to support. These are terrible losses for all of us.

It is reported that Pope Francis this past Sunday, as he was walking through the deserted streets of Rome, prayed this, “I asked the Lord to stop the epidemic… Lord, stop it with your hand.” And while he invited us to pray this prayer with him, he also encouraged the world, now in lockdown and isolated, “not to waste these difficult days, instead ‘rediscover’ the importance of small, concrete gestures expressing closeness to us, a caress for our grandparents, a kiss for our children, for the people we love.” All of this is challenging indeed. And as followers of the God, Jesus, who overcame death and offers us abundant life right where we are, we know that even during these times of self-isolation, the Lord of Life walks with us, and is within us! We do not have to despair or give in to the cloud of anxiety which swirls around us, encouraged on by each piece of bad news and forecasts of doom that we hear. 

This is truly a time for us to trust in the Lord’s promise to always be with us, especially as we hear in the words of the 23rd Psalm, “Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil; for you are with me; your rod and your staff – they comfort me (vs.4)”. The Lord does not promise to remove us from the ‘darkest valley’ but he does assure us that he will be right there next to us in that place, on our journey. The Spirit of God dwells in us. Count on his inspiration and consolation and courage in the days and weeks to come.

I am pleased to share with you that the staff of Holy Family Parish will be working full time to serve you, whether in the parish office (now closed to the public) or at home in self-isolation. We will soon be offering mass online to our parishioners, so that we can be present to one another in the Eucharist. I invite you to consider joining your hearts with us at mass united in a ‘spiritual Communion’, a communion of prayer in which hearts are bound together intimately by Christ, who unites us all. Here is the prayer that St. Alphonsus Liguori prayed in such situations: “My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire you with all my heart. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, I ask you to come spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already in my heart and unite myself to you completely. Please do not let me be ever separated from you. Amen.”

Beginning next week, we will be offering ministry and support online. Please stay tuned as we open up our hearts to each other more than through electronic means. Our common prayer in spirit will carry us through this COVID-19 desert of isolation and pain, to the dawning of new life in abundance when we will once again join together at the Eucharistic Table of the Lord, face to face, heart to heart.

Devotedly yours in Christ,

Fr. Bob Remark,

Pastor

Holy Family Parish is Closed Until At Least April 30

In response to the evolving progression of COVID-19 in Canada and as per the direction of Bishop Fabbro, all Catholic parishes and their offices are CLOSED until April 30, 2020.
This includes…
• All weekday and weekend Masses, the Lenten All Day Confessions, Palm Sunday & Easter. Bishop Fabbro has given us all a dispensation from attending Mass.

• All parish events, meetings and outreach programs.

For more information on Bishop Fabbro’s update, kindly go to http://www.dol.ca

We will continue to monitor email and phone messages, responding to urgent matters at this time.

We continue to monitor changes and communicating them to you our beloved parishioners.
May the love of God be with you and your families.