Press release 

Montreal, March 15, 2020 - The Premier of Quebec has ordered the closure of all public gathering places. Given the extent of the danger, the urgency of the situation, and the solidarity required under such circumstances, the Executive of the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Quebec is recommending, effective today, the suspension of all celebrations and public activities in the churches of Quebec.

Pastors are asked to contact families who have planned a baptism, funeral or wedding celebration to ask them to postpone the event.

We also appeal to all priests exercising ministry in Quebec to remain available to and show pastoral creativity in the way they accommodate parishioners who communicate with them by telephone asking for a private meeting or a home visit.

We ask priests and their pastoral team to remain attentive to the needs of those who are alone or sick, and to offer them spiritual solace, including Communion at home and the Sacrament of the Sick. During these visits, they must adhere to the practices recommended by public health officials.

Where possible, it is desirable that churches remain open but for private prayer and personal devotion only.

We ask the faithful to appreciate that older priests will not be available for pastoral service during this period of voluntary confinement.

During this time of fear and uncertainty, we welcome Pope Francis’ invitation “to rediscover and deepen the value of the communion that unites all the members of the Church.” He also invites us to find solace in Christ, with whom we are united through prayer and spiritual communion in the Eucharist, a practice that is highly recommended when it is not possible to receive the Sacrament.” 

In the exceptional circumstances we are experiencing this Lent, we are invited to live this period of voluntary confinement and hardship recalling the forty days that Christ spent in the desert. When we fast, pray and mutually help one another, we remain united in Christ.

We join our prayer with that of all Catholics in Quebec, and we commend to God all the first responders working throughout the province taking care of us all. May the Virgin Mary, who is also our Mother, bring us comfort and support.

+ Christian Rodembourg
Bishop of Saint-Hyacinthe
President of the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Quebec


Please take note of the following events previously posted in The Grapevine
which have since been cancelled
or postponed until further notice:



Join us for a free, bilingual evening mini-retreat, as part of our Discover Soirée seriesfeaturing Fr. Peter Bisson, SJ, former provincial superior of the Jesuits in English Canada and long time advocate for justice and reconciliation committed to indigenous peoples.  All are welcome on Thursday, March 19, 7 p.m.-9:30 pm. at the Villa Saint-Martin (9451 Gouin Blvd. West, Pierrefonds, H8Y 1T1). A time for quiet reflection following the talk will give participants space to reflect and prepare themselves for spiritual conversation at the end of the evening. Your donations to support our mission are welcome!

For $20, you can join Fr. Peter Bisson and other participants for supper at 5:30 p.m. Register for the dinner at 514-684-2311 ext. 0.



This year, Fr. Lloyd Baugh, SJ, presents the ten films of Kieslowski’s Decalogue. Loosely inspired by the Ten Commandments, the films are consistent in their sharp focus on the absolute primacy New Testament commandment to “love your neighbour as yourself". Join him on Friday, March 20 at 7 p.m. in the parish rectory (6405 de Terrebonne, Montreal, H4B 1A8) to view the film "Decalogue Eight: Do Not Lie”.  Free admission and popcorn, with discussion to follow!  For information, contact Fr. Lloyd at 514-481-0267 ext. 232 or

*Please note that until further notice, all activities at St. Monica Parish are suspended. Please visit for information on cancellations



The Nature of Lent: God and Creation
Facilitated by Sylvester Tan, S.J. and Marc-André Veselovsky, S.J.
Friday, March 20, 5 p.m. to Sunday, March 22, 1 p.m.
(9451 Gouin Blvd. West, Pierrefonds, H8Y 1T2)

“Eternal life will be a shared experience of awe, in which each creature, resplendently transfigured, will take its rightful place and have something to give those poor men and women who will have been liberated once and for all.” - Pope Francis, Laudato sì, 243

God reveals the life God offers us through all of God’s works in creation, and our salvation in Christ is to be lived out by taking our rightful place among all of God’s creatures! Join us for this weekend retreat in which we seek to become ever more open to the new life that Christ offers us not merely for ourselves, but for the sake of the whole of creation, groaning for its redemption (cf. Romans 8:22).

Register now! Space is limited! The retreat price is $214, including meals, materials, and accommodation. Rooms with private bath are available for an additional fee.

To register, please contact Julie Lafontaine at the Villa Saint Martin at (514) 684-2311 extension 0 or e-mailing


Facilitated by Julie Lafontaine and the Villa Saint-Martin Team
Friday, March 20, 5 p.m. to Sunday, March 22, 1 p.m.
(9451 Gouin Blvd. West, Pierrefonds, H8Y 1T2)

“...delight to rest in his shadow” - Song of Songs 2:3

A retreat is a time to break out of the daily routine and connect with the One who loves us most… the source of our desire to serve. This retreat is specially designed for those who are in ministry, volunteer, and pastoral service but all who wish to deepen their relationship with God are welcome.

Cost: $234 or $246, depending on accommodation choice
Please bring a personal Bible and a journal if you are able.

To register, please contact Julie Lafontaine at (514) 684-2311 extension 0 or



Euthanasia and Vulnerability: A Catholic Response to MAiD
We welcome this year's speaker, Bishop Noël Simard of the Diocese of Valleyfield. Join us on Saturday, March 21, from 11 a.m.-12 noon (3484 Peel St., Montreal, H3A 3T6). Spaces are limited. RSVP by March 19 at


In Honour of the 75th Anniversary of Annunciation Parish

As befits such a special milestone in the life of the parish, there will be a Festive Sacred Music Concert on Wednesday, March 25, 7 p.m. (1020 Laird Blvd., Town of Mount Royal, H3R 2G9). The concert will feature "What a Choir!", directed and accompanied by Manuel Blais, well known by music lovers in the Town of Mount Royal for his concerts over the years while serving as music director at Annunciation Parish and later with the TMR Singers and other groups.
"What a Choir!" is a unique ensemble of over 30 choristers, including members of Annunciation Parish, Our Lady Gate of Dawn Lithuanian Parish, St. Malachy Parish, St. Patrick’s Basilica, and St. Basil Ukranian Catholic Parish.

The program will include a wide and interesting variety of well-loved and brand new inspirational music sung in English, French, Hebrew and Latin, such as Ave Maris Stella, Amazing Grace, How Great Thou Art, I Believe, Ose Shalom and Let There be Peace on Earth, all sung in four-part harmony. The music chosen is designed to appeal to anyone interested in choral music.
All funds raised will be designated for the benefit of the parish.
Tickets are $15 for adults, free for children, and can be purchased after weekend masses and at the door on the day of the concert. Contact this office at (514) 738-1080 or

A Public Lecture hosted by
the English Speaking Catholic Council (ESCC)


Despite being more technologically connected than ever before, Canadians are reporting higher levels of disconnectedness and loneliness. 

Join us on Thursday, March 26, 7 p.m.-9 p.m. at the Atwater Library Auditorium (1200 Atwater Ave., Westmount, H3Z 1X4) as Milton Friesen guides us through the data of this troubling trend and explores the possibilities of an authentic response by faith communities. The lecture will be followed by a panel discussion between community leaders.
Milton Friesen is the Program Director of Social Cities at Cardus. He has served a three-year term as an elected municipal councillor and is completing a Ph.D. at the University of Waterloo School of Planning that is focused on new ways to measure the social fabric of neighbourhoods.
Please RSVP to the ESCC by March 23rd at or 514-937-2301 x252.

Take the time to encounterhear
and respond to Jesus.

Themed "Lent-Slow", join preacher/homilist Fr. Allan MacDonald, CC in exploring the importance of slowing down to encounter, hear and respond to Jesus. All are welcome! Join us for three evenings, during the 7 p.m. Mass on:

  • Monday, March 30 - The Need for Structure
  • Tuesday, March 31 - The Beauty of Silence
  • Wednesday, April 1 - The Power of Surrender

Refreshments will be served after Mass each evening. For more info, contact the parish office at 514-366-0131, ext. 221 or


Sponsored by the Pillars Trust Fund

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