Weekly E-newsletter links
- Nov. 28, 2021
- Great new resource from the Canadian bishops: a toolkit on palliative care, for caregivers and others
- Here’s a https://www.catholiceducation.org/en/religion-and-philosophy/apologetics/are-we-living-in-the-last-days.html" followup on yesterday’s homily about the end times and being ‘left behind’.
- Excellent Advent Guide!
- Nov. 22, 2021
- Some of our young adults cooked a chili lunch for several hundred homeless men at Benedict Labre House on Saturday. (Who was St. Benedict Labre?)
- What is Fertility Awareness?
- Do you find it hard to forgive yourself?
- Nov. 15, 2021
- Free online conferences this weekend with excellent speakers:
a) “Waiting in Joyful Hope”: Augustine Institute Advent Bible Conference
b) “Become a Strong Defender of the Faith”: Pints with Aquinas Apologetics Conference
- Join the thousands who have signed the Quebec Community Groups Network open letter to Premier Legault with the message that English-speaking Quebecers are full-fledged members of Quebec society.
- Upcoming free in-person mini-retreat for separated and divorced Catholics with Archbishop Lépine
- Nov. 8, 2021
- Free online summit for Catholic moms this weekend: inspiration, hope and practical tips.
- Starting today! Word on Fire’s free “reading challenge” of Dei Verbum, Vatican II’s document on Divine Revelation.
- Mysterious technical glitches interfered with live-streaming our Sunday Mass, but we were able to record most of it, including the moving Remembrance Day ceremony following the homily.
- Nov. 1, 2021
- Today’s Solemnity of All Saints reminds us the exalted purpose of our short lives here on earth: to become saints, to live in and through and with Our Lord Jesus Christ. Here are two brief and very different videos on the feast, each unique and each delightful:
Fun Facts about Saints with Bishop Barron & Nick, and Saints with Libby and Kai from Catholic Central.
All you angels and saints, pray for us.
- Rekindle your married love with Couch Talks.
- Parents: Do you think TikTok is just a fun pastime for your kids? There’s more to it than you might know.
- If you are a fan of C.S. Lewis—author of The Chronicles of Narnia and many books on the Christian faith, selling over 200 million—you will have a chance to see a new film on his life, "CS Lewis: The Most Reluctant Convert," at the Kirkland Cineplex this Wednesday.
- Oct. 25, 2021
- “Source & Summit” Deepen your understanding and experience of the Eucharist this Saturday, with Archbishop Lépine, myself and other speakers from 10 am - 2:00 pm (via Zoom). Register at
- Did you know? The National Catholic Biothetics Center (USA) has a wonderful free consultation service for those seeking "to better understand or apply Catholic moral teaching to specific ethical issues they are facing in health care or the life sciences." They also provide many solid resources on their website on COVID-related issues and much more.
- Are you a fan of Gregorian chant, such as we sometimes play in church before the weekend Masses? Check out YouTube channel “OPChant”, for watching or listening to the form of music which has been the Church’s primary liturgical music for many centuries.
- Oct. 18, 2021
- Today is the Feast Day of St. Luke, evangelist, author of the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles. Let us give thanks that we have such beautiful written accounts of the birth, life and ministry of Our Lord. St. Luke, patron of artists and doctors … pray for us.
- Did you know that:
- Most of what you’ve heard about Galileo is probably wrong. Get the facts in this fascinating article.
- There are alternatives to euthanasia. Learn more from Montreal’s Living with Dignity.
- Oct. 11, 2021
- Happy Thanksgiving! Did you know it’s a Catholic holiday?
Today we give thanks for our many blessings . . . as we pray for those in need.
We give thanks for our family and friends . . . as we pray for those who are lonely.
We give thanks for our freedoms . . . as we pray for those who are oppressed.
We give thanks for our good health . . . as we pray for those who are ill.
We give thanks for our comfort and prosperity as we share our blessings with others.
On this day of Thanksgiving, may the love of God enfold us, the peace of God dwell within us, and the joy of God uplift us. Amen
- Pope Francis wants us all to be missionary disciples.
- Check out the upcoming men’s retreat.
- Looking for an interesting family podcast? Try Jimmy Akin’s Mysterious World.
- Oct. 3, 2021
- “And the Word was made flesh” Why bother coming back to church when we have virtual Mass?
- Fr. Mike Schmitz talks about suicide. Excellent video.
- Sept. 27, 2021
- "The Government of Canada has declared September 30 a day of Truth and Reconciliation with our indigenous brothers and sisters. Here at Becket, we are marking it with an evening of prayer and reflection. Join us in solidarity with our fellow citizens from 7-8 pm this Thursday in church for adoration, music, readings and prayers with the participation of some indigenous parishioners. The service will also be livesteamed.
See this week’s Grapevine for the Canadian Bishops’ “Statement of Apology to Indigenous Peoples”. The bishops are also pledging $30 million for healing and reconciliation initiatives.
Check out this beautiful and moving video, “Enduring Faith: The Story of Native American Catholicism,” by the Knights of Columbus.
- Join bishops, priests and well-known lay leaders on October 7 for the Rosary Crusade for Victory Against the Darkness.
- Free virtual Healing & Forgiveness World Wide Conference October 7-8.
- Sept. 20, 2021
- Sept. 13, 2021
- Save the date! The first meeting of our new parish bereavement group meets in the parish hall next Tuesday, September 21, from 7-9 pm. Receive compassionate support from our trained bereavement facilitator. More information in the next parish bulletin.
- Bishop Barron’s thoughtful reflection on 9/11, anger and forgiveness.
- “The Church in the Service of the Community”, by Archbishop Lépine.
- The Holy Water touchless dispensers and the damaged Holy Water tank have been fully paid. Thank you for your generosity, as always.
- “Reclaiming Faith & Family”: Free virtual conference this weekend.
- Sept. 6, 2021
- Learn about the International Eucharistic Congress now underway in Hungary. Follow the events live online, including Pope Francis’ presence, on EWTN.
- Jackie Angel is loving and compassionate as she responds to pro-abortion arguments. She recommends this website which describes how abortion works. The content is disturbing, but we believe Jesus that the truth will set us free. Hope and healing after abortion is possible.
- Golf this week for a good cause: St. Raphael Palliative Care.
- Keep up-to-date on Catholic Action and consider how you might get involved.
- Aug. 30, 2021
- Save the dates! Two exciting evening Zoom programs this fall. More details and registration info to follow. Click the links for a preview.
- Bishop Barron on the fading of forgiveness and how to forgive, so difficult but so essential.
- Young adults (18-35) retreat coming up at Villa St-Martin.
- Meet the Vatican librarian who was the Gordon Ramsay of his age.
- Aug. 24, 2021
- Feeling blue? What does St. Francis de Sales advise?
- We hear increasingly that people are missing holy water as they enter church. The common font is still not considered safe and may not be for a long time, but we have come across these touchless holy water dispensers. Having these will be another element of normalcy to our church life. We invite you to participate in the purchase of two of these (total cost including tax & shipping is $1,600), via cheque or online (specify “Holy Water Dispensers” in the message section).
- Is COVID-19 a punishment from God?
- Aug. 16, 2021
- Aug. 9, 2021
- Prepare for next Sunday’s Mass of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
- What’s the most beautiful thing in the universe?
- Are faith and science opposed? Join the Word on Fire online summit beginning today.
- Consider a parental control app to keep your kids safe online.
- Aug. 2, 2021
- Excellent resource (for all, even if it was part of a Women’s retreat), worth sharing: Facing the reality of sorrow in our lives, we can either live in denial of the pain or dig deeper for meaning… and joy:
Journey to Joy--Meditation & Talk with Fr Daniel Brandenburg, LC.
- The school year begins soon. Here are some good Catholic adult distance learning programs:
- Sign up for a free virtual conference August 12-15 for catechists, but also for parents and anyone interested in transmitting the faith.
- July 27, 2021
- If you missed our recent Zoom presentation and discussion on Indigenous issues or would like to watch it again, it is now available here.
Read an excellent article by an Ontario priest on the topic. If you scroll down that page to “Related items”, you will see other helpful links. One of them speaks of taking a spiritual approach: while neither trashing the Church nor protesting false allegations, we can do something productive and concrete by offering an act of penance this Friday for injustices done and for reconciliation: abstaining from meat or a dessert, offering a rosary, and so on.
This group is bringing together Indigenous and non-Indigenous Catholics to seek truth and reconciliation.
- July 22nd was the feast of St. Mary Magdalene: who was she?
- Pillars Trust has a new president. Learn more in this 5-minute interview.
- July 19, 2021
- Who is Jesus? And how do we know He’s real?
- Honour your grandparents? Learn more and see the video.
- Is there a solution to EPIC drift in marriage?
- Lessons from the Workshop of St. Joseph: a live guided retreat.
- Job opening at the archdiocese.
- July 12, 2021
- Take the 30-day Gospel Challenge with Jonathan Roumie (“The Chosen”).
- Diocesan virtual day Camp Savio ages 7-10.
- Last Thursday’s Zoom presentation, "Renewing fellowship with Indigenous peoples," was well received by the 85+ people who joined in. Many were not able to attend and have requested the recording. It is currently being prepared and will be available in the near future.
- Good $$ news for seniors (75+).
- How to restore passion, purpose and intimacy in your marriage: retreat this weekend.
- Catholic Action’s latest newsletter.
- July 5, 2021
- Join us Thursday evening @ 7:00 for a Zoom presentation, "Renewing fellowship with Indigenous peoples" with David Acco and his wife, Julie Lepage. Learn more about them here. They and their four children are long-time faithful parishioners of Holy Name of Jesus parish in Laval.
This webpage could be a good preparation for the Thursday event, which will include a time for Q&A and prayer. (Meeting ID: 880 3572 1216, Passcode: 091097, Dial by your location +1 438 809 7799 Montreal.)
- Wondering what to do? Fr. Mike Schmitz provides 4 Helpful Rules for Discernment.
- June 28, 2021
- Two minute video: Bishop Barron on returning to Mass.
- FAITH FIRST: Registration is now open for NEW families for the 2021-2022 year. Registration for RETURNING families will be available soon. Faith First is a six-year religious education program beginning in grade one, with First Communion celebrated in grade two, and Confirmation celebrated in grade six, once all requirements are met. Please visit the Faith First Program info page to access program information and registration. Please note that the Faith First office will be closed July 17 - August 2, although online registration remains open.
- National Indigenous Peoples Day 2021 Prayer for Tolerance, Forgiveness, Reconciliation
O God, Creator and Father of all,
with humility we your children acknowledge the relationship of all living things.
For this we thank you, we praise you and we worship you.
We call on you, Great Mystery, the Word made Flesh – our teacher, prophet and brother – to open our hearts to all our brothers and sisters,
and with them to grow in the wisdom, honesty, courage and respectfulness shown in The Sacred Teachings.
Give us the vision and honesty to recognize that the we are all brothers and sisters of one human family, created and sustained by the One Creator.
As we deal with many challenges, may we never give way to fear and anger, which can be the source of division and threat amongst peoples.
We look to how God always gives to us, as a remedy for sins of prejudice and intolerance.
We see in God the Creator of all things, One who always provides and is generous
– even given the abuses we have heaped on one another and on the earth.
We see in the Son, Jesus Christ
- the innocent Victim who pours His life blood out from the Cross for all peoples.
We see how the Holy Spirit is God’s gift, alive in our world today
– inspiring vision and hope that we can have the same mind and heart of God!
May Your Spirit bless all souls who died at residential schools.
May this same Spirit also bring blessing and healing to all families and communities affected in any way by the schools.
O Creator, show us the way to healing, forgiveness and reconciliation and a renewed fellowship. Amen
(Written by the Canadian Catholic Indigenous Council)
- June 21, 2021
- The diocese and Holy Name of Jesus parish are collaborating on a virtual Catholic day camp this summer for ages 7-10.
- Have you ever wondered how a person becomes a canonized saint?
- Word on Fire is offering free access to the “St. Ignatius” video until July 31.
- A family is looking to hire a daytime caregiver, able to communicate in French, for an elderly woman with limited capacities. Contact 514-683-8156 during evening hours.
- June 14, 2021
- “Residential schools: In solidarity with the families and their communities,” a reflection by Archbishop Lépine.
- Young Samantha Servera was one of several children who made their First Holy Communion on the weekend. Seeing the joy on her face afterwards leads me to pray that everyone will come to know the power and beauty in the reception of the Body and Blood of the Lord in the Eucharist.
- You may have heard that over 300 people are without a home after a recent fire in DDO. The City is encouraging citizens to help out with a contribution of money, food or clothing.
- We are still in the “Year of St. Joseph”, proclaimed by Pope Francis. Check out these 37 videos (U.S.$1 each) on St. Joseph by Scott Hahn and others.
- June 7, 2021
- Concerning residential schools: Here is Archbishop Lépine’s recent pastoral letter and a page of excellent resources from the Archdiocese of Toronto, including the history of Church apologies on this issue and more.
- I spoke in my Corpus Christi homily yesterday about the loss of belief in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. Here are a variety of short and longer videos by Bishop Barron on that and related subjects for those who want to deepen their faith and understand how so many have lost it.
- The Archdiocese of Montreal provides important services, pastoral and administrative support to the parishes and the Catholic community at large, the appointment of an independent ombudsman being the latest. Let’s be generous in our support of the annual campaign.
- May 31, 2021
- Statement from the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops following the recent discovery at the former Kamloops Indian Residential School.
- Corpus Christi is coming up Sunday. Enter more deeply into this central feast of the Church with these two free conferences, one short one and a longer one, both with excellent speakers.
- Do you find it hard to understand the Catholic teaching on the Eucharist? This clever video might help.
- Bishop Barron’s short book on the sexual abuse crisis in the Church: “Letter to a Suffering Church” is now available free online.
- May 24, 2021
- Episcopal Vicar Fr. Raymond Lafontaine’s Pentecost message.
- On Sunday we honour the Holy Trinity.
- In preparation for Corpus Christi next month, watch Scott Hahn on the Eucharist.
- Many people drive up for Holy Communion after watching the livestream Mass on Sundays. Others walk up and even cycle up. No horses or rickshaws (yet).
- May 17, 2021
- Prepare your heart and mind for Pentecost Sunday this week. There is also available a free Pentecost mission with Ralph Martin.
- Join Pope Francis and Catholics around the world in praying the Rosary this coming Sunday.
- Camp Kinkora has pivoted to a family camp format for this summer.
- Find out how you can promote and support Quebec’s English-speaking community.
- It turns out that many parishes worldwide have been targeted with the same email phishing scam we recently experienced.
- May 10, 2021
- Wondering about the meaning of the icon that is behind the altar since Easter Sunday?
- Join in the Third Worldwide Rosary this Thursday, Memorial of Our Lady of Fatima.
- We crowned our indoor statue of Mary yesterday and dedicate this month to her. Why do Catholics call Mary their mother?
- We rely on the services of the diocese for many aspects of parish life, never more than since the start of the pandemic. Please be generous in contributing to their annual campaign.
- Free Catholic LoveLife Conference this weekend!
- See Catholic Action’s latest newsletter.
- May 6, 2021
- May 3, 2021
- We were blessed with the presence of Montreal Auxiliary Bishop & Vicar General Alain Faubert at all Masses last weekend. One of the highlights was the First Holy Communion of Alessio Mokbel.
- The latest on-site retreats at Villa St. Martin, and a virtual weekend retreat with Fr. Gallagher, Living with Hope.
- The Canadian Bishops Conference recently published a message for the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker.
- The Canadian Bishops have also posted an employment offer
- April 26, 2021
- April 19, 2021
- April 12, 2021
- The Pillars Trust will be offering helpful and interesting information and social sessions to seniors and would like their input
- Catholic Action newsletter
- Free virtual men’s conference
- We are in the Easter season until Pentecost. Here is the Canadian Bishops’ Easter message and their recent message on euthanasia.
- April 5, 2021
- Fr. Jaison Joseph, our Pastoral Team and the parish wardens join me in wishing you a happy and blessed Easter. It was a joy to celebrate the holy days with a larger number of people than we have had in recent months. We look forward to the day when there will be no restrictions on attendance.
- The Easter Vigil was very beautiful this year. If you missed it, click here.
- On this coming Sunday, the Second Sunday of Easter, also known as Divine Mercy Sunday, the Chaplet of Divine Mercy will be said at the conclusion of all Masses, as we do every year. A powerful prayer that takes about five minutes.
- Archbishop Lépine’s Easter message
- March 30, 2021
- Here is the latest information on the Easter Triduum services. You might want to print it for easy reference.
- All these services will be limited to 75 persons (except the Hall Masses, which have a limit of 25). This is the number we can receive without risk of compromising the health and safety of our parishioners.
- Weather permitting, there is also some seating outside the doors of the church at Holy Day and Sunday Masses, with speakers to hear Mass and the distribution of Holy Communion. You can also listen to Mass in your cars in the parking lot on 97.3 FM.
- Weekday Masses: Beginning Easter Monday, April 5, we will return to one Mass each day at 8:30, for 75 persons (registration opens Wednesday, March 31 @ 3pm sharp).
- As the government limits funerals to 25 persons, those who wish to follow Dawn Valero Richardson’s funeral from our church on Tuesday, April 6, at 11:00 , may do so via this livestream link.
- Pastor’s request: As we operate with a small number of employees and of very dedicated volunteers, please cooperate with them when they assign you a seat by gracefully accepting that place and not moving to another seat. It is not possible to explain all the logistical reasons each time.
- Why do we call it Good Friday?
- Join Archbishop Lépine virtually on Wednesday, March 31, at 6:30pm for the Chrism Mass, at which the Archbishop blesses the Holy Oils for use throughout the entire coming year.
- The traditional Good Friday collection for the Holy Land has been postponed until Sunday, September 12. It is possible, however, to contribute now online. Any donations given at church for that purpose will be forwarded until September. Any other offerings will go to the parish.
- March 25, 2021
- Friday, March 26, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of Holy Week: registration will increase to 50 persons per Mass (both the 8:30 and 9:30 Masses)
- Palm Sunday Masses in the church (Saturday at 4pm and 5pm, Sunday at 9am and 11am) will increase to 75 persons.
Masses in the hall (Sunday at 9am and 11am) will remain at 25 persons.
- The Easter Triduum services (Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday): to be determined. We are awaiting more information from the diocese and will let you know as soon as possible.
- March 22, 2021
- The Way of the Cross filmed in church last year is available again.
- Prepare for Holy Week with a free Bible Conference.
- March 15, 2021
- A beautiful online Way of the Cross
- Fraud is an increasing problem, especially but not exclusively for the elderly. Learn how to recognize, reject and report it.
Join a workshop with the SPVM on this topic online.
- A photo of our shrine commemorating COVID-19 victims
- March 8, 2021
- In this week's bulletin, I draw your attention to the item “Commemoration of COVID-19 Victims on Thursday, March 11. If you know anyone who died during the pandemic, you may send an email to mentioning their names and date of death.
- The Diocese has prepared an excellent page for the Year of St. Joseph, focussing on his feast day on March 19.
Here are two examples of novena prayers to be said March 10-18:
-- From the Oratory
-- From Ascension Press
- “My Peace I Give You”: Free Virtual Catholic Women’s Conference, March 12-14.
- Free e-book: “The Sign of the Cross”
- Concerned about possible links to abortion of the COVID-19 vaccines? Put your mind at ease.
- March 1, 2021
- Here are documents related to two issues concerning which we are being called to demonstrate our faith in action:
-- The provincial government’s continued unjust restrictions on places of worship
-- The federal government’s extreme push regarding euthanasia
- What is “Truth, Transparency and Transformation?”
- February 22, 2021
- Seniors Action Quebec free Zoom presentation on anxiety, depression and more: “Taking Care of Body & Mind as We Get Older: Symptoms & Treatment Options.” Tuesday, February 23 @ 1:30.
- Virtual tax information session for seniors, Wednesday, February 24.
- Enrich (or save!) your marriage with The Marriage Course beginning next month via Zoom. See the trailer here.
- Bishop Barron’s Lenten homily
- February 15, 2021
- Living Lent well
- “The 7 Deadly Sins / 7 Lively Virtues”: Virtual parish Lenten series with Bishop Barron. Four Friday evenings beginning February 26. See the trailer here. Register here.
- Free virtual Men's Conference (February 19-21)
- The Bible & The Mass with Scott Hahn: new, free series for Lent
- Pillars Trust Fund wishes everyone at St Thomas à Becket parish a Happy Valentine's Day and a blessed and fruitful Lent!
- February 9, 2021
- International Catholic Bible Summit, February 11-13 with Scott Hahn, Fr. Mike Schmitz and many others
- February 1, 2021
- If you are unable to get a place at Mass next Sunday
- Watch Mass online at 11:00 via www.becket.ca
- Come to the parking lot at 12:30 SHARP, tune in to FM 97.3 for a brief Communion service
- Drive by the church stairs to receive Holy Communion from Fr. Jaison and me.
- February 5-7: Single Moms virtual retreat. Contact Claire Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Feeling impatient? You’re not alone. Montreal Archbishop Lépine provides some great insight.
- January 21, 2021
- Surviving the pandemic: Montreal Archbishop Lépine’s latest “Care for the Soul” short videos:
- Fear is a constant for many these days. Bishop Barron speaks about the root of fear and how to overcome it. Yes, he uses some big words, but there’s a great message everyone can benefit from.
- Local resources and other information are available in the Grapevine newsletter and other diocesan news and information
- January 14, 2021
- Upcoming Event: January 31: Presentation from the Vatican of Pope Francis’ latest encyclical “Fratelli Tutti”
- Should I get vaccinated? Get the facts from the Catholic viewpoint.
- “I am” with Chris Stefanick: 30-day coaching program.
- Why do we prevent suicide for some but facilitate it for the disabled?
- Download a new book to mark the 850th anniversary of St. Thomas à Becket’s death (free until January 29).
- January 8, 2021
- Weekday Mass: Salt+Light Catholic Media broadcasts Mass each weekday morning at 8:30 a.m. from Mary Queen of the World Cathedral in Montreal
You can also watch on TV, channel 654 (Bell) or 242 (Videotron). You may have to pay a small monthly fee to access these channels. Check with your cable provider.
- How to nourish your spiritual life when in-person Mass is unavailable?
- Look back over past bulletins: Every week I highlight a worthwhile book. Maybe now’s the time to consider reading one.
- Well over a million people have already downloaded the free Bible in a Year” podcast I recommended last week. I am enjoying it and you might too.
- Avail yourself of the abundant resources by Bishop Barron at www.wordonfire.org/
- January 4, 2021
- You don’t have to be a fan of President Trump to appreciate the remarkable document he issued last week on the 850th anniversary of the martyrdom of our parish patron, St. Thomas à Becket, in the context of religious liberty.
- Did you make a New Year’s resolution to read the Bible?
- The #1 religious/spirituality podcast in America at the moment is “The Bible in a Year” with Fr. Mike Schmitz. It’s free, and you can listen to it in the car, when walking, or anytime, at your own speed.
- “Take and Read: A Journey into the Bible”: Free virtual conference January 8-10
- Many people spent less over the holidays this year. Consider sharing what you can with Mary’s Meals, where 93% of every dollar goes directly to feeding children.
- More on St. Thomas à Becket
- December 14, 2020
- Free Wednesday conference: “Mary as the fulfilment of Old Testament prefigurations”
- Free Christmas Eve virtual concert
- December 7, 2020
- Check out a Daily Advent prayer resource on the #1 Catholic app, “Hallow”, with prayer and meditation resources, even for calming anxiety!
- “Night of Hope”: Free Steubenville Catholic Conference, December 12
- Who decides if your life is worth living?
- November 30, 2020
- “Waiting in Joyful Hope”: excellent Advent resources from the diocese for adults young and old, teens, kids and their families
- See Archbishop Lépine’s pastoral letter on the Capriolo Report released last week. The press release, with links to the report itself and the bilingual press conference at which it was presented can be found here.
- “Spiritual Lessons from the Pandemic”
- Latest newsletter from Catholic Action
- November 23, 2020
- “The Fulfilment of All Desire”: Free 4-part Advent Mission webinar beginning Sunday with highly regarded Catholic speaker/writer Ralph Martin
- Newsletter from the Diocesan Centre for Marriage, Life and Family, including Advent calendar and more
- Would a teenager give his life to protect the Eucharist if it were just a symbol or a reminder of Christ and not His actual Body and Blood?
- Learn how you can help the diocese fulfill the mission of the church
- November 17, 2020
- Bishop Barron reflects on the recently released McCarrick Report from the Vatican. It’s a bit lengthy but very helpful, and there are many other free resources on the page including his book “Letter to a Suffering Church”.
- Do you have a good-enough marriage?
- November 9, 2020
- Archbishop Lépine’s pastoral letter: “Choosing Hope and Life”
- In these uncertain times, we can be tempted to explore the occult for help and reassurance, but it comes at a high price.
- Find good resources for widows and widowers, single mothers, mental health and more in the latest Grapevine newsletter and other diocesan news and information
- The Pillars Trust Fund supports many worthwhile initiatives of the Montreal English-speaking Catholic population, including equipment permitting us at Becket to livestream our Sunday Mass, funerals and other ceremonies during the pandemic. They need our support as well.
- Free e-books:
- November 2, 2020
- “Confession is no substitute for therapy (or vice versa).” Insightful (and hilarious) article.
- Is your life changed every time you receive the Eucharist?
- Read the latest Grapevine newsletter and other diocesan news and information
- October 26, 2020
- The media has exploded in the past week concerning comments about civil unions for same-sex couples made by Pope Francis in a recent documentary. It has come to light that these were highly edited comments taken out of context from a 2019 interview. Nonetheless, it is unfortunate that the Vatican has not yet offered any clarification, thus creating confusion and anxiety among Catholics. This article is one of the more balanced and thoughtful responses to “Moviegate”.
- The Canadian Bishops’ statement on the government’s proposed amendments to the euthanasia law” and a related article on the value of so-called safeguards.
- Our parish Helping Others Fund will contribute to Developments & Peace's initiative to those in the Global South most affected by the pandemic.
- Fr. Michael McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus, will be beatified on Saturday. It’s all here.
- Virtual Theology of the Body Congress
- October 19, 2020
- Many Canadians are following the U.S. election process with despair, but the outcome will affect us and the whole world. The Catholic Church is not partisan, but is in a position to help us reflect on the issues from a faith perspective that the secular media will not provide. To this end, the American bishops have issued “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship” on the political responsibility of Catholics.
- Free upcoming virtual programs:
- SmartLoving Fertility: naturally postpone or achieve pregnancy
- Catholic Apologetics Conference with Scott Hahn, Matt Fradd and many others
- Pope Francis’ message for Mission Sunday (October 18)
- New schedule of English and French Masses at the Cathedral, some livestreamed on Salt+Light
- October 13, 2020
A photo of the church decorated for Thanksgiving week. Our thanks to Pépinière Pierrefonds for the beautiful flowers.
- ‘Where do we come from? Where are we going?’ Tickets available for Theology of the Body ‘Made for More: Visions Of The Promised Land’ global livestream event Friday, October 16.
- Join one million children on Saturday praying the rosary for unity & peace
- September 28, 2020
- Photos of the hall set up for Mass and of those we had to turn away yesterday. Fair weather and an external speaker allowed those sitting outside to follow the Mass, at the end of which they received Holy Communion.
- We will be sending out information about next weekend’s Masses, including any changes regarding numbers and registration, as soon as we get it.
- Some people have asked why the diocese has pulled back from what seemed a more confrontational stance last week towards the government. The simple reason is that the media and others would quickly marginalize us. Vicar General Bishop Alain Faubert: “Civil disobedience is not an option, as we would risk being associated, despite our best intentions, with fringe groups among the population who are minimizing the seriousness of the pandemic — a position to which we do not subscribe in any way.”
- There’s still time to register for Sycamore.
- The diocesan youth ministry has some great programs coming up.
- Men: join thousands of your brothers in this amazing program beginning this week.
- Free session of Christopher West:“Fulfilled: The Promise of the Christian Life”
- September 24, 2020
Until and if the government relaxes the current unjust restrictions on church attendance, we will now be limited to 25 persons at each Mass. (See the Quebec bishops’ most recent press release).
We are, however, permitted to hold two Masses concurrently, one in the church and the other in the parish hall, as we do at Christmas and Easter.
Even so, that limits our numbers to 50 altogether at each Mass time. So as not to be turning people away at the door, we will now require advance registration, which many parishes have already been doing. The total include the priests, lectors, musicians and volunteers (who do not need to register), so we will be able to welcome only 18 at each Mass location. Two-metre distancing and masks will be obligatory at all times, including while seated. Your health and safety remain our first concern.
Click here to register. It’s very simple and self-explanatory.
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation during this difficult time. We realize that many people will be disappointed, and we hope that a resolution will be found very soon. The 11:00 Mass in church will continue to be livestreamed.
- September 21-22, 2020
- Concerning what you are hearing in the news regarding Montreal now being in the orange alert level, the diocese has sent this directive:
“Until further notice, the health instructions issued by the Archdiocese of Montreal remain in effect (250 participants maximum attendance).”
Therefore, for now we will continue to welcome you as usual on weekdays and weekends. There is no change. Be assured that we will keep you informed of developments as they occur.
The Catholic Bishops of Quebec have issued an excellent press release concerning the injustice of limiting attendance at places of worship to 25 persons, in the same category as bars, while cinemas and concert halls are still permitted 250. We hope that the government will respond quickly and positively to the reasonable request of the Bishops.
- This past Sunday there were 299 persons present at church (30 more than last week and about the same as two weeks ago. There were 87 at 4:30, 88 at 9:00 and 124 at 11:00.
- Here are links to some amazing online conferences (some free) coming up:
- The bishops of Quebec have released more details of their position concerning the new restrictions on places of worship. The government has yet to respond.
- It could be very helpful if you would contact your MNA and let him or her know that practicing Catholics, which number hundreds of thousands in Quebec, should be accorded the same rights as those who wish to attend a concert or a movie. Just click here and enter your postal code to find your MNA.
- STUCK AT HOME? TRYING TO MAKE SENSE OF EVERYTHING?
Wednesday, October 7, will see the launch of our Fall 2020 session of Sycamore, following a very successful first experience last year.
Sycamore is an informal course about the Christian faith and its relevance for life today. It gives you space to meet other people, share ideas, explore your beliefs, and think about questions that really matter. Each Sycamore session involves a short film and some time for discussion. There’s no pressure, no commitment, no charge. You can be yourself without any fear of being judged. There’s a real sense of community, a spirit of friendship and some great conversation. Everyone is welcome. Given current circumstances, the program will be entirely online. See the trailer and register here.
- September 14, 2020
- Happy Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. “We Adore You, O Christ, and We Praise You. Because by Your Holy Cross, You Have Redeemed the World.”
- Information on the widow(er) support group, now meeting conveniently online.
- Details of a memorial Mass this week at the Cathedral (and online) for Montreal’s unclaimed deceased homeless persons.
- This past weekend we welcomed a total of 269 people to the three Sunday Masses (38 less than last week). There were 84 @ 4:30, 83 @ 9:00 and 102 @ 11:00).
We don’t know the reason for the decline this week, except perhaps the media coverage of a rise in cases in Quebec. But let’s remember that there have been no cases in churches and, that here at Becket, we go beyond the required measures to keep you safe.
For those unable or unwilling to attend Mass yet, you can watch the 11:00 Mass livestreamed via www.becket.ca (“Sunday Mass”) any time until the following weekend.
- See Bishop Barron’s excellent homily yesterday on forgiveness and broken relationships
- What are the kids listening to? Yikes!
- September 7, 2020
- This past weekend we welcomed a total of 307 people to the three Sunday Masses (29 more than last week). There were 91 @ 4:30, 136 @ 9:00 and 80 @ 11:00.
Please make every effort to arrive EARLY (at least 15 minutes before Mass), as we have to take your name and phone number for contact tracing, and seat you. Remember that our wonderful volunteers are there to attend Mass as well.
(For those joining us remotely on Sunday, you will have noticed that the video disappeared partway through Mass. Our apologies.)
- “Fatima”, a highly regarded major film production of the 1917 Marian apparitions in Portugal, is now available for home viewing
- Why is forgiveness so hard?
- Here’s a video a parishioner suggests for perspective on life under COVID-19
- August 31, 2020
- This past weekend we welcomed a total of 278 people to the three Sunday Masses (73 @ 4:30, 96 @ 9:00, 109 @ 11:00). We mistakenly reported 315 last week, but in fact it was 273.
- A guide to intelligent, non-violent video games.
- Reflections on Kanye West
- Beautiful short video of the Holy Father’s prayer intention for September
- Bishop Barron wants to clarify misconceptions about Vatican II (and receives a thousand-plus comments)
- August 24, 2020
- This past weekend we welcomed a total of 316 people to the three Sunday Masses (35 more than last week.) There were 73 at 4:30, 77 at 9:00 and 165 at 11:00.
We have not yet reached capacity, but these numbers tell you that if you prefer a Mass with fewer people, 4:30 or 9:00 might be a better choice than 11:00. Health and safety are not being compromised at whatever number of people is present.
(Yes, we know that the Prayer for Spiritual Communion was omitted in the 11:00 livestream. Sorry about that.)
- The funerals of two long-time parishioners will take place this week in our church:
a) Joseph Morielli on Wednesday at 12 o’clock noon. (His obituary mistakenly said only invited guests could attend the funeral. That is incorrect. It is open to all.)
b) Atwell De Souza on Saturday at 11:00.
May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace.
- Montreal has a unique and magnificent cathedral. Learn more about it here.
- We are hoping for a COVID-19 vaccine ASAP.
- August 18, 2020
- This past weekend we welcomed 281 people to the three Sunday Masses (just one more than last week’s 280.) Our apologies to all those unsuccessfully trying to watch the 11:00 livestreamed Mass. We think the technical glitch must have been with YouTube, because some other parishes experienced similar problems.
- Afraid of COVID? Get some perspective from Fr. Mike Schmitz
- Learn about the rich liturgical calendar of the Syro-Malabar Church, based in Kerala, India, and to which Fr. Jaison belongs. He has permission to celebrate Mass in that rite or the Latin Rite that we use. The Syro-Malabar Church is part of the Catholic Church under the Pope, but it is not Roman Catholic.
Learn more about the amazing diversity that is present in the Catholic Church.
- August 13, 2020
- If you are coming to Mass on the weekend, you can drop your offering in the labelled basket.
- Mail or drop off your offering at the parish office.
- Donate online, click on “Fund”, select “Special Collection for Lebanon”.
- Donate via the papal agency Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA)
- August 11, 2020
- This past weekend we welcomed 280 people to the three Sunday Masses (last week 249). There is still more space available, but I want to emphasize that the government limit of 250 is not a requirement, but rather the maximum permitted with proper physical distancing. The largest number we have had at any one Mass since we reopened is just over 100, with plenty of space around everyone.
- Baptism ceremonies have resumed, but for the time being it will be one child per ceremony, no group baptisms.
- Are you guilty of misreading the Bible? Christopher West thinks it’s possible.
- There will be a special collection for the church in Lebanon this weekend. This is how you can donate (all cheques should be made out to “St. Thomas a Becket Parish,” clearly marked “For Lebanon,” and the money will be forwarded through the diocese to Lebanese church authorities to prevent loss or fraud.
- August 4, 2020
- This past weekend we welcomed 249 people to the three Sunday Masses (last week 219), so the numbers are gradually increasing as people become more confident about returning.
- Steubenville Conferences had to cancel all their excellent conferences this summer, and instead offered a “Night of Hope” for tens of thousands. Watch the recording here to strengthen your hope.
- “Love Reaches Everywhere” is a very moving 30-minute film with Gerald Butler on Mary’s Meals, worth watching.
- Amazing story of twin brothers saved from abortion who became Catholic priests. How many others might there have been if abortion were illegal?
- July 30, 2020
- This past weekend we welcomed 219 people to the three Sunday Masses (virtually unchanged from last week’s 220). Please make every effort to arrive well before Mass begins. The health protocols make entering church more time-consuming than in the pre-COVID days, and it’s also respectful of the Lord, the others in church and also the volunteers who have to leave their pew every time someone arrives.
- Let us give thanks for living in Canada, imperfect as it might be, and may we never take our faith for granted: Chinese Christians told to replace Christ with Mao
- The “Support after Abortion” free virtual conference begins today. Register here.
- Men: break free of porn at www.strive21.com, designed by Matt Fradd. 19.000 men are now registered, it’s 100% free and you can be as anonymous as you want.
- July 22, 2020
- This past weekend we welcomed 220 people to the three Sunday Masses (last week 197).
- We also celebrated on Sunday afternoon the first baptism in many months. The usual baptism schedule of one group celebration per month is currently suspended: each child’s baptism will now be celebrated in a separate ceremony. Call the parish office for more details.
- Mass in the time of pandemic has its advantages, as one couple wrote this week: “Just a little note to express our thanks for being able to attend Sunday Mass and to have the opportunity to receive the Holy Eucharist again. Also our sincere thanks to all the volunteers helping you make this possible. Despite the smaller number of worshippers and the required distancing, we felt . . . an enhanced feeling of peace and calm and a heightened sense of reverence. . .” Others have expressed similar reactions and appreciate remaining in their place for Communion. Our challenge will be to maintain the reverent ambience once things return to pre-COVID norms.
- Esperanza Donovan, our Parish Catechetical Leader since late 2019, has resigned effective August 15 for family reasons. We thank her for the faith-filled creativity she brought to her work, and wish her well in future endeavors.
If you or someone you know is interested and qualified to prepare our children for the sacraments, write to me at email@example.com
- Thanks to the generosity of our parishioners, we were able to pay for our new and efficient cleaning machine and plenty of cleaning product for it.
- Local Virtual Catholic Summer Camp for children 7-10
- The Pillars Trust Fund is seeking an executive director
- The diocese is looking for someone to help translate from French to English Archbishop Lépine’s talks, letters, etc., from the confinement period for an online book. If you would like to be part of this team, contact Judy at firstname.lastname@example.org with your name and phone number.
- July 15, 2020
- July 10, 2020
- The Archbishop has suspended the Sunday Mass obligation for the time being, so if you are sick or not ready to return, you might consider attending a weekday Mass where there are fewer people present.
- Mass is on a first-come, first-served basis. Please arrive 15-20 minutes early to secure a place. You will be greeted upon your arrival. Please follow all the instructions of our trained volunteer greeters and ushers as you enter and as you leave. Most of us don’t like someone telling us what to do and where to sit, but it is all for your health and safety, so let’s all exercise Christian patience and humility.
- Please bring a mask with you. If you don’t have one, we have some available. We have lots of hand sanitizer stations, but you might want to bring your own as well to use in the pew. Washroom visits are discouraged except for urgent situations.
- July 2, 2020
- Friday, July 3: The church will be open for personal prayer and Eucharistic adoration from 9:00 a.m. to 12 noon, with our priests available for confessions.
- Saturday, July 4: The church will be closed.
- Sunday, July 5: Church closed. Mass will be livestreamed at 11:00.
- Beginning Monday, July 6: Weekday Mass resumes Monday to Friday @ 8:30 a.m.
- Saturday, July 11: Sunday Mass resumes at 4:30 p.m.
- Sunday, July 12: Sunday Mass resumes at 9:00 & 11:00 a.m. (also livestreamed for now for those unable or unwilling to attend in person).
- Everyone will be excited to see their friends after so long, but for health reasons, please avoid socializing for the time being.
- Singing is discouraged to reduce the risk of infecting others.
- Masks are obligatory: please bring your own if you have one. If not, we will provide one.
- Confessions will be heard in the parish hall. The line forms in the Narthex.
- Trained volunteers will be on site to assist you in every circumstance.
- June 26, 2020
- Update on church opening: The preparations are going well. The professional cleaning and decontamination will conclude on Monday. We are still waiting to receive certain materials related to health and safety. Very few churches have actually opened. Like us, everyone is concerned to do it well and do it right. We will keep you informed at every stage. In the meantime, find us Sunday morning at 11:00 at www.becket.ca.
- Carlo Acutis, a computer geek from Milan, died in 2006 at age 15. He will be beatified on October 10 in Assisi. Read this very moving account of his life.
- Read the latest Grapevine newsletter and other diocesan news and information
- June 18, 2020
- Happy Father's Day to all fathers. Our gift to you is two very moving, although very different, videos. Don't hesitate to forward them to any dads who may not receive this email:
- For women only: Online conference this weekend
- One-time only event: Actor Gerald Butler in a short film about one of my favourite charities, Mary's Meals
- Read the latest diocesan news and information
- June 11, 2020
- A PowerPoint describing the outrageous expansion of euthanasia being proposed by Ottawa and how you can make a difference. Remember: these laws will affect your loved ones and also you someday.
- It’s Corpus Christi weekend, and there are some great online events happening, mostly free:
- “Eucharistic Conference,” with Matt Fradd, Fr. Larry Richards, and many others
- “Real Presence: The Eucharist in Scripture and the Early Church”, with Scott Hahn and others
- And a reminder about the virtual conference for couples, with great speakers: Joyful Ever After: The Catholic Marriage Summit
- June 4, 2020
- A letter from Archbishop Lépine concerning the diocesan annual collection which we were not able to carry out this year in church, but you can still contribute here. Now more than ever we need to support the work of the diocese as they work with the government and with the parishes to keep our church life alive.
- 12 Things to Know and Share about the Trinity
- It’s about time! A free online conference just for couples, by some amazing high-profile couples. Joyful Ever After: The Catholic Marriage Summit, next weekend. Register here.
- Read the latest diocesan news and information, including a clip of Pope Francis praying for George Floyd denouncing racism
- May 29, 2020
- Here is my video message recorded today.
- A beautiful letter from Archbishop Lépine "In solidarity with those who mourn", with an invitation to join in prayer for the recently deceased, and how you can submit your prayer requests.
- A message by Archbishop Lépine published in today’s Montreal Gazette and other Montreal newspapers.
- This seems to be Archbishop Lépine’s day:
Someone has been sending emails and texts in my name asking for gift cards for cancer patients, assistance, etc. This is a scam: please don’t send anything or respond to them. I would never ask for help in that way, and these thieves feed on the generosity and compassion of people connected to church. Other parishes are experiencing the same issues.
Never hesitate to contact me if you are not sure about a request. My email address is email@example.com, and not other addresses that appear similar. We do not share your coordinates with others.
Happy Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord! God has blessed us this day with a decree from the Quebec government permitting up to 250 persons in places of worship, while respecting distancing restrictions, which means for our church a maximum of about half that number. This is the same as was permitted last summer. Procedural masks continue to be required at all times in church.
This happy development coming just before Holy Week presents some challenges, but this is what we have determined so far:
Weather permitting, there is also some seating outside the doors of the church, with speakers to hear Mass and Holy Communion brought out. “Drive-up” Holy Communion will continue to be available for those unable or unwilling to attend Mass: Sundays at 12:30, as well as Holy Thursday at 8:30pm. Blessed palms will be distributed as well this Sunday at 12:30.
The Diocesan Centre for Marriage, Life and Family has prepared excellent resources for celebrating Holy Week.
Please read the letter from Archbishop Lépine , concerning the recent tragedy in Lebanon. As I wrote earlier this week, there will be a special collection on Sunday for this intention. You are of course free to send a donation directly to the Archdiocese or elsewhere, but we suggest the ways I outlined in that email, as follows. What is important is that the money collected reaches the intended recipients.
All cheques should be made out to “CACRM” clearly marked “For Lebanon or Beirut,” and the money will be forwarded through the diocese to Lebanese church authorities to prevent loss or fraud. (If you have already written cheques to “St. Thomas a Becket”, be assured they will be go to the correct fund.)
Here’s a brief update on our first weekend open for business. We welcomed just under 200 people at the three Masses combined:
4:30 Saturday: 66
9:00 Sunday: 81
11:00 Sunday: 50
(Our weekday Masses are drawing between 30 and 40 people, not far off our previous numbers.)
We did not mind smaller numbers the first weekend as it allowed us to find out what works and doesn’t in terms of the logistics. Summer attendance is always lower, and many people are still not well or vulnerable or nervous. In any case, it was wonderful to see people we had not seen for so many months, and to feel the emotion of those back in their spiritual home was very moving.
Our protocols were generally favourably received, with positive comments from a number of health professionals. We appreciate the encouragement, as the logistics are complex and there is always a certain amount of criticism no matter what we do.
People were very generous in volunteering to wash the pews after Mass, but we cannot impose on them every week. We recently learned about an “electric fogger machine” already being used in a number of Montreal parishes and, following a demonstration and some research, we have ordered one. It permits the whole church, not only the surfaces but also the air, to be sanitized rather quickly after each Mass by just one or two persons, with a non-toxic, quick-drying spray.
The cost is just over $1,400, and we have already collected half that amount. If you would like to contribute to this machine, which will likely be in use for quite a while, and again in the future, even if just at flu season, there are three ways to do so:
1) Click here: https://www.canadahelps.org/en/dn/24758, and choose the “Sanitizing Machine” fund,
2) Drop your contribution: a) In the parish office mailbox b) In the “Donation Box” at the back of the church
Speaking of volunteers, we do still need some for greeting, ushering, etc., at both weekday (8:30 a.m.) and Saturday/Sunday Masses. If you can help, join us this Wednesday evening, July 15, at 7:00 in church or contact Joe @ (514) 941-7914.
We look forward to welcoming you back to your spiritual home this weekend, after four months, for Sunday Mass.
Wondering what to expect if you attend this weekend? The West Island Community News Blog visited the parish this week and filmed a great little video explaining it all.
Here’s the latest Mass schedule:
-- Saturday, July 11: Sunday Mass resumes at 4:30 p.m.
-- Sunday, July 12: Sunday Mass resumes at 9:00 & 11:00 a.m. (also livestreamed for now for those unable or unwilling to attend in person at www.becket.ca).
-- Monday, July 13-17: Weekday Mass continues Monday to Friday @ 8:30 a.m.
In preparation for your visit this weekend, please read the following carefully:
Here’s the news you have all been waiting for! The church will open, but in phases. Please read this carefully and pass on the information to those in your circle who may be interested:
Here's a handout with helpful information for your return to church. In addition, please note
From the Archdiocese of Montreal: “Pending a significant expansion of “deconfinement” (i.e. most places of worship being open, without a limit on participants), the Archbishop relieves the faithful of his diocese of any obligation to be physically present for Sunday Mass on church premises, until further notice.”
We can’t wait to see you!
- 80% of women with an unexplained infertility diagnosis can conceive naturally. Find out more at this free summit beginning Monday.
- Is it possible to forgive and forget?
- “Laudato Sì! Serving God in Creation”: Online retreat from Villa St-Martin beginning tonight.
- Suffering from insecurity and uncertainty? an article by Fr. Stephen Wang, founder of the Sycamore program.
- Being more or less confined to our homes is annoying at the least, but it is also a precious opportunity to enrich our minds and souls with outstanding resources now available. Here are a couple:
- Diocesan news and information.
- Archbishop Lépine’s letter to Montreal Catholics
- Details for St. Luke’s Divine Mercy hour 3 pm May 16 & 30
- Did you know? I am impeded by my age, but Fr. Jaison is now permitted to visit and offer the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick to those facing imminent death. If you have a loved one at that stage, don’t hesitate to call us at the parish to arrange our visit.
- Concerning Confession: you may call or email Fr. Jaison or me and make an appointment, and we can arrange to meet you outside the church where we can sit down at a safe distance in a private area. Can’t I just confess directly to God?
- Read the latest Grapevine diocesan newsletter and other diocesan news and information.
- Here is a letter from the Vatican calling for a day of prayer, fasting and good works to end the coronavirus, Thursday, May 14. Each of us will choose how to observe the day.
On the parish level, Fr. Jaison will be leading the Rosary at 10:30 accessible from our website www.becket.ca, something Pope Francis has been urging us to do during the month of May.
- Also on Thursday at 8:00 am, Archbishop Christian Lépine will be celebrating a Mass, “to celebrate the dignity of life, the family, the most vulnerable among us, their loved ones and their caregivers”, as part of the National March for Life, online this year.
- Laila Mickelwait is taking on “big porn” to stop the exploitation of women and girls. Find out how you can help by signing a petition with one million other concerned citizens
- Read the latest Grapevine diocesan newsletter and other diocesan news and information.
- A letter from our Responsible Pastoral Ministry coordinator.
- The form for Pre-authorized debits (see bulletin)
- Don’t’ forget Sunday Mass @ 11 (becket.ca); and Young Adults via Zoom Sunday evening @ 7:30. Contact Russel @ (438) 881-8585 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- One upside to the pandemic is the abundance of high-quality faith resources. Among the best in coming days, and all FREE
- Theology of the Body conference this weekend, with more than 50,000 already registered (no deadline) to hear dozens of outstanding speakers including the great spiritual master Fr. Jacques Philippe. You can watch the talks at your convenience over the weekend.
- An Easter Mission, thanks to Holy Name of Jesus Parish, with Patrick Sullivan, well-known Catholic Lay Evangelist.
- The National March for Life in Ottawa has gone online this year. For schedule and to livestream events, go to www.marchforlife.ca
- The latest Catholic Action newsletter
- Read the latest Grapevine diocesan newsletter and other diocesan news and information.
- Archbishop Christian Lépine is looking for families, couples and single people to help lead a daily rosary at 7pm through the month of May (broadcast on the YouTube channel or Facebook page of the Archdiocese of Montreal).
You are invited to make a video of yourselves praying one of the mysteries of the rosary in your own language. To participate, please record yourselves through your phone or other device (horizontally, in HD). Begin by introducing the language you will be praying in and announce the mysteries as you pray them. Send the video as soon as possible to (via Dropbox, WeTransfer or Google Drive).
A guide to pray the rosary can be found in the Archbishop's family prayer book.
"Contemplating together the face of Christ with the heart of Mary, our Mother, will unite us as a spiritual family and will help us to overcome this challenge." (Pope Francis, April 25, 2020)
- Who deserves our help?
- Got some time on your hands? Netflixed out? Feed your mind and soul with some online classes on the faith:
- A nice bedtime story
- Young Adults (18-30): Feeling isolated? Join a Zoom gathering Sunday evening. For more info send your email or phone # to Russel @ (438) 881-8585 or email@example.com
- Registration is now open for the free Theology of the Body conference with Christopher West and many other great speakers, May 8-10
- "Strong in the Face of Tribulation": A free Vatican online prayer book
- Read the latest Grapevine diocesan newsletter and other diocesan news and information.
- Here’s my latest two-minute video describing upcoming liturgies
- Archbishop Lépine, and all the Canadian and American bishops, will consecrate their respective dioceses to Mary, Mother of the Church, on Friday, May 1.
- Do you have ethical questions about COVID-19? The NCBC has answers and you can even call (215-877-2660) or write them with your particular question about the pandemic or any other bioethical question you are facing. No charge.
- Feeling listless and restless? The Church has a name for that.
- Some great resources from the Diocesan Centre for Marriage, Life and Family:
- For parents from the Canadian Centre for Child Protection
- For the whole family: “13 things to do with your family during the lockdown”
- Read the latest Grapevine diocesan newsletter
- Free digital missallette apps are available. Prepare for Mass, follow the Mass, deepen your prayer life, so important at this time:
- The Canadian app "Living With Christ"
- The "Magnificat" app (U.S. edition) or online at https://us.magnificat.net/free
- "The Word Among Us", as an app or online.
- During Lent we pray the Way of the Cross. Did you know about the Via Lucis, the Way of Light, for the Easter season?
- Free virtual tour of the Raphael rooms of the Vatican
- Yesterday was the Feast of Divine Mercy, but it’s not too late to enter more deeply into it:
- Pope Francis’ beautiful homily
- Fascinating background on the history of the feast and St. John Paul II by a Canadian priest
- Why does God allow disasters? Find out in this great article by Catholic author Peter Kreeft
- Diocesan matters:
- “Montrealers, you are not alone”, a letter to the citizens sponsored by the Archdiocese in Montreal’s newspapers last week
- As parishes have less income, so does the diocese with all the services it provides for us. Let us be generous in contributing to the Annual Collection:
- Read the latest Grapevine
- Mass will be streaming via our website (www.becket.ca) at 11:00 on Sunday.
- A special Divine Mercy Eucharistic Holy Hour will stream at 3pm. Taking part (remotely) in the hour are families from across the parish, representing the Catholic Women’s League, the Knights of Columbus, Faith First, Young Adults, Seniors and Altar Servers, with beautiful readings, music and Benediction. Tune in via becket.ca and join us for a spiritually nourishing hour.
- Is the pandemic a punishment from God? Read Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa’s take, the brilliant Capuchin preacher to the Pontifical Household under three popes since 1980.
- My Easter video greetings and what to expect this Sunday.
- New way to give at Becket: Pre-authorized debit
- Learn more about Divine Mercy Sunday
- The porn industry is exploiting people’s loneliness during the current crisis. Help is available here.
- The schedule of streaming Holy Week Masses and services. As you see, our own Way of the Cross will be streamed Friday morning at 10:00. You can also watch the version with Pope Francis, with meditations written by prisoners and others. Bishop Barron has some beautiful meditations as well.
- Many people are hungry to know the Lord, especially in these days. Why not invite a neighbour, friend or family member to participate remotely in some of the Holy Week ceremonies we are providing? Consider forwarding this Becketmail e-newsletter to those you believe might appreciate it, and invite them to subscribe by sending us their email address. We encourage you as well to spiritually offer Mass, and also any difficulties you are undergoing, for a loved one or someone who is sick or struggling in any way.
- A message from Canada’s religious leaders: “Hope, Gratitude, Solidarity”
- Archbishop Christian Lépine’s new family prayer booklet.
- The current Catholic Action newsletter.
- The Diocesan COVID-19 page with latest news and the Archbishop’s letters
- Here’s another brief video message
- Here’s one that will take your mind off you-know-what: Non-Catholics ask Bishop Barron questions on hell, priestly celibacy and why the Catholic Church seems so hung up on sexual sins.
- People asked for it, and now there’s a Virtual WOMEN’S conference as well as the virtual MEN’S conference this weekend, both with great speakers, and all free. Learn more and register for either one here.
- Read the latest Grapevine diocesan newsletter
- Spiritual Life resources:
- Join in this beautiful prayer of Divine Mercy and hear a powerful suggestion here.
- A very moving Stations of the Cross in the time of COVID-19
- You can still catch the last night of the Pillars Trust Virtual Lenten Mission with Fr. Allan MacDonald
- I have recorded a brief video message.
- People have been asking if they can confess by phone. Read all about it.
- Bishop Barron is hunkered down too.
- There is no bulletin today, but in these exceptional circumstances I want to keep in regular touch, to let you know our concern for whatever suffering or fear or difficulties you are experiencing, and that we are here for you, whether via email or phone or, as appropriate, in person here or at your home. Despite the limitations imposed by the crisis, we find our anchor in the Lord through daily prayer, participating in Mass online, and in the loving attention of others: a regular phone call means so much to those isolated in their homes.
- Important updates:
- Diocesan World Youth Day (April 5) has been cancelled.
- As things stand, Holy Week and Easter ceremonies at our parish (as throughout much of the world) will not be open to the public, incredible as that seems. We will let you know how it will be possible to participate remotely, and how you will be able to obtain your palms on Palm Sunday, and how the Baptisms and Confirmations scheduled for the Easter Vigil will be handled.
- We are discovering that many parishioners are not receiving these emails. If you know of anyone who would like to be kept up to date and part of our “cyber-community” at this time, please send us their email address and/or pass this email on to them. They can cancel at any time (see below). Nor do they have to be parishioners. Among the close to 1,000 emails we send out every week are people around the province, the country and beyond.
- Other news:
- For men only: If you have a little time on your hands, consider this major Catholic men’s conference beginning April 3 that, because of COVID-19, has gone virtual. Speakers include Fr. Larry Richards, Jason Evert, Fr. Mike Schmitz and many other well-known figures. And it’s FREE. I have signed up---why not join me?
- iBreviary is a free app for IOS and Android with many prayers including the Liturgy of the Hours—the Church’s official prayer prayed by priests and religious five times each day. Many laypersons pray part of it as well and find it spiritually nourishing.
- Today's letter from Archbishop Lépine explaining that all churches must now remain closed 24/7.
- An important letter from our warden Michelle Figueredo.
- 1) All weekend and weekday Masses in the diocese (as in many other parts of the world) have been suspended. The Sunday Mass obligation is also lifted.
You are invited to watch the Mass livestreamed by our neighbour, St. Luke’s Parish, at 9:00 Sunday. That Mass, which will be celebrated by our own Fr. Jaison this Sunday, is not open to the public, but available online at www.st-luke.ca (click on “9:00 am”). The Mass remains available for a week afterwards. More than 600 people watched last week.
- The Diocese now has an excellent Covid-19 webpage with the latest information and resources.
- What to do while you are cooped up at home? Bishop Barron has some great ideas
- Free Mass and prayer resources in English and Spanish and to keep the kids busy.
- Statement of the Quebec Bishops re the Coronavirus. Archbishop Lépine will be issuing directives in the coming days on its implementation in our diocese, and I will share that with you. Our church remains open during the day.
- Do not hesitate to contact the parish office if you require the services of a priest or know of someone who does or just want to talk. Many pastoral events are cancelled, and our access to hospitals, etc., is limited, but we are not on vacation, rather we are here running the parish and available for you.
- Pope Francis’ live-streamed weekday and Sunday Masses at www.vaticannews.va. Other options are Salt+Light Catholic TV or EWTN
- Magnificat is offering the online version of their beautiful daily Mass and prayer book for FREE during this time when many people cannot get to Mass.
- In these uncertain times, we find our refuge and strength in Christ and our Blessed Mother. Consider making the following prayer part of your daily schedule:
Novena Prayer for an End to the Coronavirus Pandemic
O Mary, full of grace, Patroness of our diocese and Mother of the Church,
in this time of illness and worldwide need we seek your intercession
for the human family before your Son's throne of grace and mercy.
We ask for strength in adversity, health in weakness, and comfort in sorrow.
Help us, O Blessed Mother, to be filled with confidence and trust in the tender compassion of our God.
Let us not be afraid, but rather entrust our life into the care of our Divine Physician.
Continue to watch over all who are sick as well as those who care for them
and give wisdom to all who are seeking a cure.
We ask this through Christ, our Lord. Amen.
- Statement of the Canadian Bishops on the Coronavirus
Participants in our first Sycamore course on the faith. Stay tuned for the next one.
- Details on the upcoming Cabane à sucre for all.
- The Stations of the Cross with Bishop Barron
- Archbishop Christian Lépine’s Lenten message
- Christopher West’s 3 secrets of a successful marriage
- Information on upcoming retreat at St. Joseph’s Oratory.
- Our pilgrimage to Poland for the 100th anniversary of the birth of Pope St. John Paul II.
- Some Lenten resources:
- Bishop Barron on the Jean Vanier scandal
- Great video by Fr. Mike Schmitz on Ash Wednesday
- Read the latest Grapevine diocesan newsletter
- The Magnificat Lenten Companion 2020 is now available as an app in the App Store.
- Coming up Saturday, February 22, is the Feast of the Chair of Peter. Learn all about it here.
- Did you know that there are only three essential things the Church does? Bishop Barron tells us what they are.
- Check the bulletin for details on the upcoming parish mission. On that subject: If you are unable to attend because of ill health or transportation issues, send me your email and we will send you a link to watch the mission livestreamed to your computer.
- The Canadian Bishops’ letter to Prime Minister Trudeau on proposed changes to MAID (euthanasia) legislation
- “The Holy Catholic Church”, Part 7 of the Knights of Columbus Hart Series. You can read or listen.
- Excellent St. Valentine’s Day Resources from the Diocesan Centre for Marriage, Life & Family:
- Prayer: The best waste of your time
- “The Holy Spirit”, Part 6 of the Knights of Columbus Hart Series. You can read or listen.
- Bishop Barron’s take on the new film “1917”, including a fascinating reflection on World War 1, so little known and understood
- Information on the upcoming parish mission with Fr. Larry Richards
- "What Catholics Believe: “Jesus Christ”, Part 5 of the Knights of Columbus Hart Series. You can read or listen.
- Why can’t Christianity be easier?
- Kobe’s Catholic faith
- ) "What Catholics Believe: “The Human Person", Part 4 of the Knights of Columbus Hart Series. You can read or listen.
- There is a push to expand assisted suicide (“Medical Assistance in Dying”) (see links on how to participate in the public consultation) or contact your MP.
- What is New York Encounter? “An annual three-day public cultural event in the heart of New York City, offering opportunities for education, dialogue, and friendship.” It’s free, no registration required.
- Our culture’s moral schizophrenia about suicide
- The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is coming up. Why can’t we all just be “Christian”?
- In my last homily, I spoke about the obelisk in the centre of St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City.
Here’s some facts on the golden globe on the top of the Basilica’s dome.
Photos of our young adults praying Vespers at a monastery in the Plateau and enjoying a holiday supper together
Photos of the two groups of Magi who visited on Epiphany Sunday
- “The Two Popes”, about the relationship between Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis, is a technically beautiful movie now on Netflix. Accurate? Not so much. Which is why Bishop Barron says it should be called “The One Pope”.
- Did someone you know get nicer Christmas gifts than you? Find out the difference between envy and jealousy.
- My Christmas e-card
- Christmas messages from:
- President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops
- Montreal Archbishop Christian Lépine
- Prince Charles’s message on the persecution of Christians for the Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need
- "What Catholics Believe: “Creation", Part 3 of the Knights of Columbus Hart Series. You can read or listen.
- Pope Francis honours Rome’s Filipino community
- December 9, 2019
Fr. Jomon of St. Joseph’s Oratory presiding at the visit of the relic of St. Brother André
Bosco at the very successful Knights of Columbus Christmas breakfast telling St. Nick what he wants for Christmas
- "What Catholics Believe: “God", Part 2 of the Knights of Columbus Hart Series. You can read or listen.
- Do you struggle with scrupulosity?
- December 2, 2019
A photo of Archbishop Christian Lépine blessing our Young Adults leader Russel Niere (kneeling in plaid shirt) and other parish youth ministers at the Cathedral during the Vigil of Christ the King, November 22.
- "What Catholics Believe: Faith", Part 1 of the Knights of Columbus Hart Series. You can read or listen.
- People ask about our use of “tinyurl”. It is a free service to shorten long/unwieldy links to a neat and uniform 27 characters. Check it out.
- November 25, 2019
A photo of the parish Catholic Women’s League members on November 17 at the reception of new and anniversary members and installation of officers. We are very proud of and grateful to these ladies who contribute to the life of the parish in countless ways.
- New diocesan investigation concerning the abuse of minors
- Excellent diocesan Advent resources:
- November 18, 2019
- A homeless shelter in Rome fit for a king
- Did you know that 75% of religious violence is against Christians, making them the world’s most persecuted group? Find out more in the Canadian Bishops “Statement on the Persecution of Christians”
- November 11, 2019
- Veteran Darroch Robertson and Knights of Columbus Guy Taillon and Joe Ojeda among those participating in our Remembrance Day ceremony at Mass yesterday.
- November is the month we reflect on the “Four Last Things”. Find out what Archbishop Fulton Sheen says about them.
- Did you know there is a World Day of the Poor? Here is Pope Francis’ message.
- November 4, 2019
- This Fr. Matthew Schmitz video on Mass is an investment of time (45 minutes), but as someone told me who saw it, “I will never see Mass the same way again”.
- Life of Christ, Part 6: “The Sermon on the Mount”
- October 28, 2019
- Dr. Peter Kreeft gives us some ideas on how to begin praying and meditating. I will suggest one of his books in next week’s bulletin.
- Was Pope Pius XII “Hitler’s Pope” during the Second World War, doing little or nothing for the eventual victims of the Holocaust? Get the facts.
- If you missed the parish giveaway of Bishop Barron’s book, “Letter to a Suffering Church”, you can you can purchase a Kindle copy here for 99 cents.
- October 21, 2019
- Friday of next week, November 1, is not only All Saints’ Day, but also First Friday, which means the Blessed Sacrament will be exposed from 9:00 a.m. to midnight. But what do we do during our time of Eucharistic Adoration, whether for a few minutes or a full hour? Elizabeth Scalia describes it beautifully.
- Bishop Barron recently visited Reddit (the hugely popular network of communities based on people's interests) for another #AMA (“ask me anything”) session. Over 15,000 comments poured in from young skeptics around the world, making it the third most-commented-on #AMA of the year (after Bill Gates and Bernie Sanders). Listen here.
- Save the date! Wednesday, November 13, from 7-9pm, is the first of ten sessions at the parish of an amazing new program called Sycamore. Stay tuned for details.
- October 14, 2019
- McGill University’s Richard Bernier’s compelling reflection on the canonization of John Henry Newman yesterday.
- See also Bishop Robert Barron’s recent film on the new saint
- The Catholic Register’s feature on Fr. Robert Assaly’s ordination.
- October 7, 2019
- Pope Francis has declared October “Extraordinary Missionary Month”. Find out what it means and how you can participate.
- Life of Christ, Part 5: “Who is this Man?”
- September 30, 2019
- A photo of Sunday’s Blessing of Pets
- A chart comparing each federal party’s position on life and family issues.
- As we prepare for the federal election, our Canadian Bishops Conference has issued an election guide. It does not support one party or another, but offers general principles Catholics should consider as they prepare to vote
- September 23, 2019
- Our congratulations to Fr. Robert Assaly on his priestly ordination Friday. Here are some photos of the event (click the link at the top of the page for a moving account of Fr. Robert’s path to the Catholic priesthood). He has been appointed to St. Thomas More Parish in Verdun.
- Read Pope Francis’ message for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, coming up on Sunday.
- Life of Christ, Part 4: Jesus’ ministry continues
- September 16, 2019
- Photos from the multi-parish young adults retreat up north I (and Bosco) assisted with on the weekend. Great young people serious about their spiritual life. The property was given to the Salesian Sisters by Jean Coutu.
- Life of Christ, Part 3: Beginning his earthly ministry
- September 9, 2019
- If you don’t read anything else in this week’s bulletin, read the piece “Not to Fall into Remorse”, something that applies to us all.
- Jesus said, “Call no man your father?” So what about Catholic priests? or Historical Development of Calling Priests Father.
- Life of Christ, Part 2: The Nativity and boyhood
- September 2, 2019
- Confession is a Place of Victory: Did you know that at St. Thomas à Becket, we offer the Sacrament of Reconciliation at every weekend Mass and any time upon request? Experience your victory.
- Life of Christ, Part 1: The Annunciation
- What’s Wrong with a Drive-Thru Parish?
- August 26, 2019
- Here is the longer part of the Anderson Cooper and Stephen Colbert interview I referred to in my homily yesterday.
- August 19, 2019
- Information on an upcoming conference
- An article on Quebec’s Bill 21 by Canada's former (and first) Ambassador for Religious Freedom and Head of the Office of Religious Freedom.
- What are your strengths? How can they serve your parish community?
- August 12, 2019
- Listen to Bishop Robert Barron respond to the most popular questions people ask about God: you might be surprised. Scroll down and click on the “Googling God” episode (WOF 191).
- “Protecting Our Children: A Family’s Response to Sexual Abuse”: an excellent video by the Knights of Columbus every parent should watch (scroll down for the video).
- Who knew? Natural Family Planning is catching on with millennials.
- July 1, 2019
- Happy Canada Day! The Collect from today’s Mass says it all:
whose reign extends from sea to sea and whose care endures throughout the ages,
hear our prayers for our country:
grant wisdom to those who govern it
and respect for human life and dignity to every citizen,
so that justice may flourish and all peoples live in unity and peace.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen
- A photo of our recent bowling evening for altar servers and families (and Bosco). Special thanks to Joe Ojeda for helping to organize it.
- Did you know there is an amazing Catholic conference this summer for those who experience same-sex attraction and those who love them?
- Summer in the city: camps, retreats, much more...and there’s more.
- Great news department: Archbishop Lépine will ordain Deacon Robert Assaly to the priesthood at our parish on Friday evening, September 20. Deo gratias!
- June 24, 2019
- Here’s a one-hour a day, 7-day retreat at home
- You can have your prayer intentions placed at the grotto at Lourdes
- June 17, 2019
- Yes, Father’s Day was yesterday, but it’s not too late to reflect on that wonderful vocation
- God’s Voice Within: a retreat at Villa St-Martin
- June 10, 2019
- Happy Pentecost! St. Basil the Great (+379, brother of St. Gregory of Nyssa) wrote about the Holy Spirit:
“Like the sunshine, which permeates all the atmosphere, spreading over land and sea, and yet is enjoyed by each person as though it were for him alone, so the Spirit pours forth his grace in full measure, sufficient for all, and yet is present as though exclusively to everyone who can receive him. To all creatures that share in him he gives a delight limited only by their own nature, not by his ability to give. The Spirit raises our hearts to heaven, guides the steps of the weak, and brings to perfection those who are making progress. He enlightens those who have been cleansed from every stain of sin and makes them spiritual by communion with himself.”
- Photos of the “Becket Believers” team at the June 1 Apostles Cup tournament.
- Information on next week’s “missionary evening” with Fr. Villeneuve. Call or email the parish to sign up.
- What’s wrong with IVF anyway?
- Bishop Barron asks if they forgot something important in the new movie about J.R.R. Tolkien.
- May 27, 2019
- Read Archbishop Christian Lépine’s statement on Bill 21.
- How can there be an all-loving and an all-powerful God if there is so much suffering and evil in our world?
- May 20, 2019
- An article on Envy and Jealousy: is there a difference? Does it matter?
- A fascinating personal testimony, “Conceived in Rape”, especially timely in the face of some new abortion laws in the U.S., opponents of which always referring to rape and incest (a red herring, since according to the NY Times, these cases involve only 1% of abortions).
- Bishop Barron was interviewed at Facebook, then at Google, and now at Amazon headquarters.
- May 13, 2019
- A photo of our group who participated in the National March for Life on Parliament Hill Thursday.
See these remarkable new photos of a child in the womb.
- If you or someone you know has had an abortion, check out www.rachelsvineyard.org, where many have found healing. The Centre for Reproductive Loss is another great resource right here in Montreal.
- What is the truth about Pope XII and the Jews?
- May 6, 2019
- A photo of our marriage jubilee couples.
- Are you a man who is grieving a significant loss---spouse, child, other loved one---and wishes to gather with other men in the context of faith? Or maybe you know someone in that situation you could tell about this: We are launching a Men's Bereavement Group Thursday this week, May 9 at 7:00 p.m. at our Cahill Hall. A second meeting is scheduled for Thursday, June 6. No charge, no obligation. The group will be facilitated by Bill Curran, a former bereavement facilitator at Maison Monbourquette. Bill recently spoke on the topic of grief as part of our Pastoral Home Care ongoing formation series.
- Get a free pass to see Bishop Barron’s latest production “The Pivotal Players”, exceptional videos on the life and influence of St. Francis, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Catherine of Siena, Bl. John Henry Newman, G.K. Chesterton and Michelangelo.
- April 29, 2019
- Here are two very different but excellent articles on Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris.
- Fr. James McDonald, the beloved second pastor of our parish (1980-1992), passed away on April 24. May he rest in peace. Here's a video remembrance of Fr. Jim from the parish archives.
- The Church has always taught the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. But what about the brothers and sisters of Jesus mentioned in the Bible?
- April 22, 2019
- This will help you prepare for Divine Mercy Sunday (April 28).
- Beautiful and deep Easter messages from:
- April 15, 2019
Some of our young adults at St. Patrick's Basilica on April 13 for the diocesan World Youth Day event.
- This week on Holy Thursday, we commemorate the institution of the priesthood and of the Eucharist.
Learn more about the Eucharist.
- April 8, 2019
- The re-scheduled and final dates for our pilgrimage to France. Amazing itinerary!
- A Pastoral Letter from Archbishop Lépine.
- This is the time of year when many people think about the Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation. Here’s a great resource in preparing yourself for that confession
- April 1, 2019
- Here is Bishop Tom Dowd’s statement to the press upon the sentencing of Brian Boucher last week.
- Learn more about the sacraments in this online course from the Liturgical Institute in Chicago. Half-price sale ends April 4.
- March 25, 2019
- “Strive: Quit Porn and Live a Better Life”: a step-by-step plan guided by expert Matt Fradd, in a 21-day detox beginning March 27.
- Yes, Lent’s almost half over, but it’s not too late to experience it more deeply with these free resources:
- Stuck in traffic? Boring commute or flight? Pass the time and exercise those brain cells with this powerful talk on doctrine by Bishop Robert Barron. Click on “Subscribe” to find out how you can listen to this talk as a podcast data-free anywhere.
- March 18, 2019
- The St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology (Scott Hahn) is offering a free Lenten Scripture study, “From Genesis to Jesus".
- Don’t we pray the Stations of the Cross during Lent? Yes, every weekday morning in church at 8:00 (before 8:30 Mass). Bishop Barron also has a great video about the Stations.
- To mark St. Joseph’s feast day tomorrow (March 19), you might want to check out the brand new documentary on the Oratory.
- March 11, 2019
- Lent is a good time to consider the Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation. Confessions are available at our weekend Masses, and by request at weekday Masses and at other times at the parish rectory. Here are some good resources to help you prepare.
- Making a good confession
- The Litany of Humility
- How to prepare
- Why not confess directly to God?
- More great resources
- Even if you missed the first session of the Lenten video series, “No Greater Love”, you are welcome to join us as we continue on Friday evening at 7:00 pm in Cahill Hall
- March 4, 2019
- Another look at Lenten fasting
- The Magnificat Lenten Companion 2019 is now available as an e-book/app
- February 25, 2019
- Photos from Friday’s diaconal ordination ceremony of Seminarian Robert Assaly (click on the arrows to see all the photos). More details here. Congratulations, Deacon Robert!
- The value of humility in relationships
- February 18, 2019
- My life is all about me, right? Maybe not, says Bishop Robert Barron.
- Upcoming men’s conference with Archbishop Lépine and the Band of Brothers team
- February 11, 2019
- Current programs from Villa St-Martin, local Jesuit retreat house
- Join nine days of focused prayer with the Novena for Purity, where you’ll ask God to strengthen you in various ways as you seek to live a life of purity.
- February 4, 2019
- Want to learn more about Catholic liturgy? Here’s a 5-hour online course that you take at your own speed.
- Canada’s abuse guidelines earn praise
- January 28, 2019
- Archdiocese reacts to Fr. Brian Boucher’s sexual abuse guilty plea last week.
- Why Does God Let Bad Things Happen
- Bishop Robert Barron’s new interview at Amazon
- January 21, 2019
- Last week we included a link to reading the Catechism in a year. As some of you discovered, it does not work in Canada. But here’s another that does work, and includes the Bible.
- Two abuse victims who came back to the Church
- January 14, 2019
- Information (Pilgrimage Highlights and Promotional Itinerary) and registration for our pilgrimage to the shrines of France at the end of May. Now that the holidays are over, we can look ahead to deepening our spiritual life at Lourdes, Chartres, Ars, Paris and many other places where God has acted, in the country known as “the eldest daughter of the Church”. A commitment this month is necessary so that we do not lose the block of seats.
- Daunted by the size of The Catechism of the Catholic Church? It’s easier in small bits, so you can sign up here to get one email each day (M-F) and cover the whole Catechism in a year. You can also learn about all the popes in a year by enrolling at: https://flocknote.com/popes.
- 6 practical steps to spiritual perfection
- January 7, 2019
- Are you “spiritual or religious”? Bishop Barron can help you discover the difference in this Epiphany reflection.
- Did you ever pray a novena? What is a novena anyway?Find out here.
- December 24, 2018
- Christmas greetings to Canadians from Pope Francis and to Montrealers from Archbishop Christian Lépine.
- Popular prayers and novenas on one website
- December 17, 2018
- Fr. Peter's Christmas E-card
- If you want a break from Christmas preparations, spend an hour with the latest Bishop Robert Barron interview.
- December 10, 2018
- Deepen your spiritual life this Advent with this guide to lectio divina and a holy hour.
- 60 Minutes with the latest research on the effect of screen time on children (including infants).
- December 3, 2018
- “Stephen Hawking: Great scientist, lousy theologian” by Bishop Robert Barron
- How to order the Magnificat Advent Companion app and other books and gifts
- November 26, 2018
- Religion is opposed to science, right? Maybe not: check out Bishop Barron’s great new website.
- The amazing story of the rabbi and the pope
- Which religion is most persecuted, and where?
- November 19, 2018
- Bruce Coupethwaite with his daughters Gwyneth and Madelyn who were baptized at the 4:30 Mass Saturday. Congratulations to our new Catholics.
- What’s the point of Eucharistic adoration? We have adoration at St. Thomas à Becket every Friday morning from 9-10 o’clock, and the first Friday from 9 a.m. to midnight. Why not stop in? St. Mother Teresa said: "The time you spend with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is the best time that you will spend on earth."
- Everyone’s welcome, right? Yes, says Bishop Barron, but ...
- November 5, 2018
- Lest we forget: the parish Remembrance Day ceremony will take place during the 11:00 Mass on Sunday, November 11.
- Reincarnation or Resurrection?
- The Lord's Prayer as spiritual weapon? Why not?
- October 29, 2018
- Checked your horoscope lately? Here’s food for thought.
- Know someone struggling with pornography? Here’s the Victory App.
- What is the new Word on Fire Institute? Find out here.
- October 22, 2018
- There is a lot of talk today about consenting to sex. But what does that really mean?
- The Canadian Bishops have issued a statement on the legalization of cannabis.
- Montreal, city of 100 bell towers
- October 15, 2018
- A PPT about the Angels of Mercy. To find out how you can help them help others,
contact Sarah Sajedi at (514) 827-6408 /
- Check out Shalom World, a truly global commercial-free, high-definition, Catholic family channel.
On their “Vocare” series is a recent interview with me.
- October 8, 2018
Yesterday’s annual Blessing of the Pets ceremony. There were no cats or rabbits this year, but the nine dogs were as well-behaved as any nine babies at their baptism.
- On this Thanksgiving Day, we might give thanks for the gift of our faith along with these joyful Nigerians.
- Next Sunday, October 14, Bl. Pope Paul VI, Bl. Archbishop Oscar Romero and several others will be canonized in St. Peter’s Square by Pope Francis. Learn more here.
- Follow the Synod taking place at the Vatican this month on Bishop Tom Dowd’s blog.
- October 1, 2018
- What to do when tempted to cheat on your spouse.
- Tomorrow is the feast day of the Guardian Angels. Learn fascinating facts about angels.
- October is traditionally “the month of the Rosary”. Learn more.
- September 24, 2018
- For those not present in church on Sunday, please find the parish survey follow-up questionnaire. You can scan and email the completed form or bring it to Mass next week.(Terrel Joseph of Pillars Trust presented the survey results on Sunday, and he will also be speaking about evangelization this week at the diocese. Thursday @ 7pm, 2000 Sherbrooke W.)
- Many people have become disillusioned with the Catholic Church lately, not surprisingly. But is the Church just another flawed institution or something more? Watch this brief video by the director of the Word on Fire Institute
- What’s the Catholic Professional Network Lecture Series?
- September 17, 2018
- A timely article on The Smoke over Medical Marijuana
- A lesser-known but great saint buried in Trois-Rivières
- September 10, 2018
- The Montreal Gazette on Saturday published an article on the abuse crisis by Archbishop Lépine.
- Bishop Robert Barron: "Why Remain Catholic? (With So Much Scandal)” People often say after the death of a loved one: “Now we have an angel in heaven”. But do we? Watch Peter Kreeft on “Do We Become Angels in Heaven?”
- September 3, 2018
- Here is a thoughtful and balanced article: “Let’s all take a chill pill”.
- Of special note in the bulletin is the Day of Prayer and Penance for the Healing of our wounded Church that we are proposing this Friday, which is the First Friday of the month. We suggest that you drop into church between 9:00 a.m. and midnight to pray before the Blessed Sacrament exposed, or take a few minutes to pray at home or even in your car; and also make an act of penance---reduce food intake, or skip a dessert, or do something else that might come to mind. Our prayers are powerful.
- Clergy abuse crisis resources (both were read at our Sunday Masses):
- Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops letter
- U.S. Bishops’ Prayer for Healing for Victims of Abuse
- Employment opportunities in the diocese
- August 27, 2018
- Clergy abuse crisis: I don’t normally publish my homilies, but since many people were away on holiday on August 5, I am attaching the homily for that Sunday. As distasteful as this subject is, it is not going away anytime soon, and I will continue to address it in various ways.
- Bishop Robert Barron released a video interview yesterday on the sexual abuse crisis: very clear and direct, helpful and hopeful both, worth your time.
- We all need to have our spirits raised in these difficult days. Here’s a short video of St. Teresa of Calcutta (Mother Teresa), whose anniversary of death comes up next week.
- August 22, 2018
- Here are some excellent resources to help you to understand and process the clergy sexual abuse crisis:
- This is a time in the Church that we need more than ever to develop our spiritual lives: Consider taking an online course in spiritual formation.
- August 14, 2018
- Archbishop Terrance Prendergast of Ottawa writes about 1968, the real summer of love.
- Should the Church sell her great art to feed the poor? It’s a valid question, with a thoughtful response here.
- August 5, 2018
- The fall pilgrimage to France I will be leading has been postponed to the spring, same great itinerary, same price. Attached are the details and registration form.
- July 2, 2018
- Note that the next bulletin will be published on August 5.
- There’s lots of talk about immigration these days. What principles does the Church offer to assist our thinking on this complex issue?
- If you are wondering where the Catholic Church got the sacraments, take a look here.
- Will a priest ever reveal what you say in confession?
- June 25, 2018
Our youth raising funds for their mid-July Steubenville Toronto youth conference.
- Check out the free Living with Christ app in iTunes or Google Play for daily Mass readings and other prayers.
- As promised on Sunday, “The Magical Birth Canal” video.
- Why does God allow evil and suffering? Bishop Robert Barron, as always, provides great insight. You can subscribe to his free WORDonFIRE Show podcast, and listen to his weekly show at home, or as I do, in the car or while walking the dog.
- June 18, 2018
- Why Confess My Sins to a Priest?
- What’s the meaning of the different colour vestments that priests wear?
- June 11, 2018
- This is a photo of some of our altar servers and families at our annual end-of-year bowling evening.
I did not get the highest score.
- Father’s Day is coming up on Sunday. Does it matter if dads don’t attend church with their children?
- The feast day of St. Anthony of Padua is Wednesday, and here are some brief reflections on his life and spirituality. You can watch one a day or all at once.
- June 4, 2018
- In the spirit of Corpus Christi which we celebrated yesterday, here are 10 amazing facts about the Eucharist.
- Friday, June 8, the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.Learn more about it. It is also the World Day of Prayer for the Sanctification of Priests, so please remember us in prayer.
- Free e-book: The Saints’ Favorite Books
- May 28, 2018
"Bon Voyage and Best Wishes, Fr. Tijo!
- Give yourself a spiritual boost: Join Archbishop Lépine and many hundreds of the faithful for the annual Corpus Christi Mass & procession downtown Thursday this week. Find out in the bulletin how to get a seat on the bus from Becket.
- With Corpus Christi coming up, see how to improve reception of Holy Communion.
- May 21, 2018
- For all you Bishop Robert Barron fans: his talk to Google & YouTube employees on how religion doesn't close the mind, but opens it to the fulfillment of our deepest longings.
- 8 things to know about Pentecost, which we celebrated yesterday.
- May 14, 2018
- Here's a photo from last week’s March for Life in Ottawa: with me among the 15,000+ participants are former Becket pastor Fr. Gilles Surprenant, parish warden Norm Cousineau and parishioner Paul Empsall. May every child in the womb be accorded the same respect and protection: society mourns a miscarried “child”, but ignores an aborted “fetus”. Does that make sense?
- For most couples who stick together, marriage gets better with time.
- How do you want to be remembered?
- Be informed: The youth leader in my former parish is interviewed by Evan Solomon on the summer jobs program.
- May 7, 2018
- Two-minute video accompanying Pope Francis’ “Gaudium et exsultate” (“Rejoice and be Glad”): Apostolic Exhortation on the Call to Holiness in Today’s World.
- "White lies" don’t really matter, right?
- April 30, 2018
- Did you know the Vatican has an official astronomer? Hint: his name is not Galileo.
- Find out about the saints and their angels.
- April 23, 2018
- Here is a photo of our jubilarian couples at the weekend celebration of their life in Christ between 20 and 50 years. Congratulations to all.
- If you were not in church this past weekend, here is the link to the parish survey, Access Code: DCE245F. It will be available until Friday. It is for those 18 plus years old who consider themselves part of our parish. It is recommended to complete on a laptop or desktop, as it is not formatted for mobile devices.
- There’s still time to register for the New Evangelization Summit.
- April 16, 2018
- Information on the parish survey taking place at all Masses next weekend, April 21/22. The survey will not make the Mass longer than usual.
- We have a new, improved parish Facebook page. Check it out and “like” it.
- Learn more about your faith online, for credit or personal interest.
- Adoration: when time stands still.
- April 9, 2018
- Should Pope Francis apologize to the First Nations people?
- Have you heard of Courage, a ministry to men and women who experience same-sex attractions and those who love them?
- 10 ways to stop gossip
- April 2, 2018
- Here’s a brief Easter greeting from Bishop Robert Barron, and also a link to a free e-booklet, “Did Jesus Really Rise from the Dead?” that will answer many of your questions about the Resurrection. Great stuff.
- Sign up to hear world-class speakers at the New Evangelization Summit at St. Kevin’s parish.
- Easter messages from:
- March 26, 2018
On the last night of His life, Jesus asked his disciples, “Could you not watch with me even one hour?” Let us respond to that invitation on Holy Thursday, following the 8:00pm Mass until early Good Friday morning in the Altar of Repose (Parish Hall). You can call the parish office to sign up, and of course you are welcome at any time during the night for as short or long as you wish to stay. There will be a security guard on duty all night.
- Learn about 7 deadly sins and click on Examination of Conscience to prepare for your Easter confession. And if you are wondering why you need to confess your sins to a priest, these might help: AskFrBarron or Catholic Precept #2
- Canada’s own Salt+Light Catholic Television network has extensive coverage of Holy Week ceremonies with the Holy Father in Rome. If you do not receive the channel on Bell or Videotron, you can learn how to sign up or else you can watch everything online.
- March 19, 2018
- Information on the upcoming pilgrimage to France
- On this feast of St. Joseph, the model of the just and righteous man,a 30-day men’s challenge begins today.
- Cardinal Collins on the summer jobs program
- March 12, 2018
- If you’re a Catholic who wants to get clear and confident about your faith, consider joining ClaritasU. More than 3,000 have already signed up.
- What is the virtue of magnanimity and how can I develop it?
- March 5, 2018
- See our children’s choir singing for Archbishop Lépine and many hundreds of others at Holy Spirit Day at the Cathedral last Sunday.
- Why Silicon Valley parents are raising tech-free kids
- When Your Heart is Troubled and Afraid
- February 26, 2018
- Are we living in an unhinged sexual culture?
- If You Really Understand Your Faith, You Should WANT to Go to Mass:
- February 19, 2018
- Destroying my Freedom---in the Name of Freedom?
- Last week’s BecketMail had an item on reading the Bible in a year.
Here’s a Bible already divided into 365 segments.
- Here are some resources to get you in the Lenten mood:
- Reading the Bible in a year is easier than it sounds. Here's a good plan.
A Catholic Bible has books that are often missing in other Bibles. Here’s a good one available : for your Kindle, or a mobile app.
- Why are teens so anxious and depressed? Here’s a possibility. And here’s some help. These excellent strategies from TIME are not just about saying “no”. Teens have to participate in and internalize the guidelines; otherwise they will have no self-control when outside your home and influence.
- Got 5 minutes? Receive the Gospel reading of the day and a brief reflection for free.
- Begin your week with some beautiful music by the Hillbilly Thomists, a group of young Dominican friars.
- Seven ways God is always with us.
- The federal government is discriminating against Catholic parishes and other pro-life, pro-family employers, excluding them from obtaining grants to employ students for the summer. See what the bishops say. Make your opinion known.
- Pope Francis invites the poor of Rome to the circus.
- Foundations of the Faith Part 12: What we believe about the four last things.
- A photo of some distinguished visitors at this past weekend's Mass:
- This promotional video for Bishop Barron’s Word on Fire contains some very moving testimonies. I think you will find it worth watching.
- Foundations of the Faith Part 11: Understanding the Communion of Saints.
- Archbishop Lépine is active over the holidays with prisoners, the homeless and others.
- Here are Christmas messages from the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops and Archbishop Lépine.
- My Christmas Wishes
- Parenting in the age of Weinstein
- The “Why (and How) of Daily Prayer”
- The CBC, supported by our taxes, seems to have made it their mission to aggressively promote assisted death. Here’s a way to protest.
- December 24 is not only Christmas Eve this year, but also the 4th Sunday of Advent. What does this mean for Mass attendance? The British bishops explain it well (what they say applies to every country): Do I have to go to Mass twice on Christmas Eve this year?
- Here’s a beautiful Christmas novena you can begin on Saturday.
- Catholic life in rural Kenya
- Here’s an Advent guide worth reading and passing on to family and friends.
- Foundations of the Faith Part 10: What it means to pray.
- World-renowned Theology of the Body speakers Christopher West & Jason Evert are coming to Montreal.
- Evolution & the Church: get the facts.
- Foundations of the Faith Part 9: The call to love.
- A photo of our 4th Degree Knights of Columbus, including Barry Adams, veteran, and our parishioner and veteran Darroch Robertson, who all helped to make last Sunday’s Remembrance Day Ceremony a memorable occasion.
- Animals help promote interfaith friendship.
- Foundations of the Faith Part 8: The Catholic conscience.
- A remarkable story of forgiveness and redemption.
- November is the month we pray in a special way for the dead. What does that mean? Here are 9 Truths about Purgatory.
- Foundations of the Faith Part 7: Christ as our moral compass.
- We talk a lot about saints, but what is a saint?
- Foundations of the Faith Part 6: Each Christian has a personal vocation.
- Hear Pope Francis’ address to Canadian youth and information on the upcoming Youth Forum in Montreal.
- Foundations of the Faith Part 5: What does it mean to belong to the Church?
- Ever thought of reading the Bible in one year? Click here.
- Did you know that there is a cloistered monastery of Benedictine women just across the river near Deux-Montagnes?See their website and video showing their way of life and how to visit.
- Foundations of the Faith Part 4: The Central Mystery of our Faith
- George Weigel, official biographer of Pope St. John Paul II, will be speaking in Montreal in a few weeks. The Irony of Modern Catholic History
- Foundations of the Faith Part 3: Navigating the Deposit of Faith
- Find yourself and others in Maria Purisima’s updated parish photomosaic.
- Blessing of Pets: October 9, 2017. About a dozen dogs and one rabbit showed up and exchanged a sign of peace.
- Foundations of the Faith: Part 2: God Revealed
- Did you know there are seven good reasons to pray? Learn from one of the great spiritual teachers of our day.
- Here are some photos from last week’s Welcome Sunday taken by Denise Weller and Dario Rivera
(click on “Slideshow”).
- Foundations of the Faith is a new series we will be following over the coming weeks. Each installment will focus on a core teaching of the Faith:Part 1: The one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.
- Here is a statement of the Canadian Bishops on the recent bill passed concerning gender identity.
- Below are photos of the young people awarded bursaries at the weekend Masses by our parish Catholic Women’s League. Congratulations to all these deserving and exceptional young adults, who are just a few among the numerous young and older volunteers who keep the parish humming.
- Bishop Robert Barron hits it out of the park again, this time at Facebook headquarters:
"How to have a religious argument."
- Here’s an inspiring story of the Salesian priest, kidnapped 18 months ago and recently released.
Pilgrimage group photo outside the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.
- A busy mother finds time for prayer.
Fr. Peter and Fr. Deepak celebrating Mass in the Duc in Altum chapel of the Magdala Centre (on the site of the village of St. Mary Magdalene), Israel. The altar is in the shape of a boat, and the tabernacle was blessed by Pope Francis. "Duc in altum" means "put out into the deep." (Luke 5:1-11)
- Instant Karma? See how Bishop Robert Barron explains the difference between karma and grace.
- After Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and with the 16th anniversary of the attacks on the Twin Towers tomorrow, Christians may naturally feel themselves a little stunned, wondering how a loving God could permit such tragedies and acts of horror. It's worth reminding ourselves of a line from Pope Francis: “There is no such thing as low-cost Christianity.”
- "Get clear about your faith". A new online program from Brandan Vogt, a well-known author and speaker and close colleague of Bishop Robert Barron. Registration closes on Thursday.
- As I head to the Holy Land on Thursday with pilgrims from greater Montreal, Toronto and Mexico, I ask your prayers that it might be a true and lasting conversion experience for all of us. We will bring your intentions to the holy places. If you have any particular intentions you would us to place in the Western (“Wailing”) Wall of the Temple of Jerusalem, or to pray at the tomb of Jesus or somewhere else, please email them to me as soon as possible.
- Pope Francis would like to hear from you as the Vatican prepares for the upcoming synod on “Young People, Faith & Vocational Discernment”.
- Sometimes it’s easier to forgive others than to forgive ourselves.
- Do you know what your kids are doing on the computer?
- "The Lord helps those who help themselves." Is that true?
- Need help preparing for Confession? Check out this app.
- Did you ever think of studying theology? Here’s a great online program.
- What’s the latest on theShroud of Turin?
- Is there such a thing as innocent gossip? See what Pope Francis has to say on the subject.
- Here’s an interesting review of a book on the rise of narcissism in our culture.
- Today the Church celebrates the memorial of St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (born Edith Stein).
Who was this remarkable woman?
- Today is the feast day of St. Thomas the Apostle. He is a patron saint of India, and so has special meaning for Fr. Tijo and others descended from the “St. Thomas Christians”. Did you know that Fr. Tijo is a priest of the Syro-Malabar Church, the second-largest of the Eastern-rite churches in union with Rome. Learn more here.
- Joan Hopkirk was a recipient in 2012 of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for her exceptional volunteer service to the West Island Palliative Care Residence, and was recently written up for her 35 years volunteering at the Lakeshore General Hospital. We are honoured to have Joan as a long-time daily communicant (one of the famous “Irish sisters”) and extraordinary minister of Holy Communion.
- Are your young children obsessed with electronic devices? Here is some help.
- Having an attitude of gratitude may not change your circumstances, but it does change you, so consider making it your summer spiritual goal.
- How to defuse a child’s tantrum with one question
- A beautiful reflection on Moses
- Bishop Robert Barron reflects on silence and the meaning of the Mass.
Do you agree with him? Let us know.
- On Sunday we will be welcoming missionary Fr. Sébastien Villeneuve, who will be sharing about his ministry in Peru at all the Masses.
- Here’s a beautiful video of last week’s diocesan Corpus Christi Mass and procession.
- How to Find Your Soulmate without Losing Your Soul. A video especially for young women but worthwhile for all.
- Were the Middle Ages really so dark?
- Give yourself a spiritual boost: Join Archbishop Lépine and many hundreds of the faithful for the annual Corpus Christi Mass & procession downtown Thursday this week. Find out in the bulletin how to get a seat on the bus from Becket.
- Every Christian should visit the Holy Land---where Jesus walked, and Rome---the centre of our Catholic faith---at least once in their life. You can do it this year on our fall pilgrimage. Learn more here.
- Take 18 minutes to watch this profound, moving and very personal video just released by Christopher West: Cry of the Heart.
- Extend your celebration of Pentecost with this great two-minute video.
- And follow up with this powerful theme song of the Rouah festival held at the Cathedral on Saturday (Rouah or Ruach is Hebrew for breath, wind, God’s spirit)
- Recently at Mass, Fr. Peter mentioned the incorrupt body of St. Zita. Here is more on that subject.
- Bishop Barron on Why the Ascension of Jesus Matters
- Here is some information on the fall parish pilgrimage to the Holy Land and Rome, including a chance to see the newly renovated Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem and to participate in a Wednesday audience with Pope Francis. (Registration Form)
- Are Catholic families different?
- To receive the free weekly newsletter of the English sector of the Archdiocese, The Grapevine, send your email address to
- To receive the weekly official diocesan Newsletter, subscribe here.
- Pope Francis often refers to the devil. Here is a brief article from the Vatican newspaper outlining how he is presented in the Bible.
- We don't have bells at St. Thomas à Becket, but we can listen for them around the city on Wednesday.
- A most beautiful TED video on the miracle of human life: “From Conception to Birth”
- Mother’s Day is Sunday, so here’s a great website just for mothers.
- Take a break from your busy day for a moment of sacred music in this story of a Montreal priest and his community.
- Are faith and reason opposed?
- Did you know that Pope Francis recently gave a TED Talk?
- Lent is over and so are meatless Fridays, right? What about alligator? Read a hilarious and informative article.
- We have reached 10% of our goal to help feed the kids of Malawi through Mary’s Meals. It just takes a moment to contribute.
- When God chisels the dead weight out of our lives it can be quite painful
- Pope Emeritus Benedict turned 90 on Easter Sunday. Here’s a fascinating interview with his personal secretary.
- Here is a great app for those who want to pray the Liturgy of the Hours, with many other features. It is also available for Android and other operating systems.