This Weekend Dec. 16 & 17
Second Collection: Church Boiler Replacement Fund & Retirement Fund for Religious (Snow storm makeup)


 The Lord’s Kitchen
           Our volunteers will be serving the meal at the “Lord’s Kitchen” on Wednesday, December 27. The volunteers ask your assistance by donating, toothpaste, toothbrushes, bars of soap and toilet paper. Please leave your donations by the Sacristy on the weekend of December 16/17.

 Bingo Food Service
         Janice and Stewart Markley will be retiring from our Bingo Team at the end of December. We thank them for their service to our parish.  We are looking for volunteers who would be willing to join our Bingo Team and lead the “Food Service” at our weekly Bingo.  If you are interested please contact Bill Soisson at 203-375-2851 or Deacon Rob at the Parish Office.

Homebound Parishioners
         Thank you to all the family members who have called to bring communion to their loved ones that are homebound in our parish. We have the pyx and prayer cards for you. Please pick up these items at the Parish Office during office hours. Any questions, please call George Zamary at the Parish Office, 203-377-0928.


  
From the Bishop’s Office

         Bishop Caggiano has requested us to inform our parishioners of the following guidelines regarding their upcoming Mass obligations.
         In order to fulfill your Sunday Mass obligation for December 23/24, you may attend one of the Vigil Masses at Our Lady of Grace on Saturday, December 23 at 4:00 pm or 5:30 pm or any Mass on Sunday morning, December 24 at 8:00 am or 10:00 am.
     To fulfill your Christmas Mass obligation, December 24/25, you may attend one of the Vigil Masses on Sunday, December 24 at 4:00 pm; 4:15 pm; 5:30 pm; or 10:30 pm. Or you may attend any Mass on Christmas Day, December 25 at 8:00 am; 10 am; or 12 noon.


IMPORTANT NOTICE!!!

Our Lady of Grace Severe Weather Policy 

             We have developed a policy that safe-guards our parishioners and will allow time for our parish contractors to clear the property during storms.
               Weekdays: When the schools are closed or delayed or the Town or State has advised against travel, there will be no weekday Mass.  The Mass intention for that day will be announced at Mass the following day.
               Weekends: When severe weather occurs during weekend Mass times, please check the local TV and Radio stations and our parish website for cancellations. It becomes very difficult to keep the sidewalks, driveways, and parking area clear if it snows during Mass time. Your safety is important to us!  Any Mass intention effected by the cancellation will be said during the next week.


Growing Up Catholic
         The “Growing Up Catholic” Ministry of our parish is a new outreach program to families who have children ranging in age from newborn to 5 years old. Melissa and Charlie Lembo have recently mailed a set of Christmas Blessings to each household. We invite families with children, newborn to 5 years old, to join us. You can contact Melissa and Charlie at baptismprogram@olgstratford.com.

Thank you
        On Saturday, December 2, 37 parish leaders attended our Parish Leaders Workshop, presented by Patrick Turner, the Director of Strategic Planning for the Diocese and Patrick Donovan, the Director of the Diocesan Leadership Institute. This interactive workshop presented the challenge of “being a parish lay-leader.” I want to thank all who attended!
 

Oplatki
         We are continuing the wonderful holiday tradition of providing Oplatki on the first weekend in Advent, Dec. 2 & 3. Each packet contains 4 wafers (3 white & 1 pink). We ask your donation of $4.00 for each packet. They will be available after weekend Masses in the Sacristy or at the Parish Office during office hours.

Special Notes and Dates:

  • Dec. 16/17 Blessing Prayer for your Christmas Tree.
  • Dec. 17 Grade 5 Class Mass, 10:00 am.
  • Dec. 18 Parish Penance Service, 7:00 pm.

Yearly Blessing of Homes
         It is a tradition within our parish to bless holy water and chalk on the Feast of the Epiphany! We will have holy water, chalk and a blessing for each household so that you can bless your home on the weekend of January 6/7.


Meetings and Events

2nd Collection: Church Boiler, Sat./Sun., Dec. 16/17.

* Blood Pressure Screening, Sun., Dec. 17, 9:30 am – 11:30 am (PC).

* Parish Penance Service, Mon., Dec. 18, 7:00 pm (Church).

* Head Ushers Meeting, Wed., Dec. 20, 7:00 pm (Church).

* Adult Faith Formation Class, Thurs., Dec. 21, 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm (MH).

* Parish Office Closed, Christmas Day, Mon., Dec. 25.

* No Bingo, Tues., Dec. 26.

* Solemnity of Mary, Sun., Dec. 31, Vigil Mass 5:30 pm.

* Solemnity of Mary, Mon., Jan. 1, Masses 9:00 am and 12 noon.

* Parish Office Closed, New Year’s Day, Mon., Jan. 1.

Please Note: Bishop Caggiano has said that the upcoming Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, is not a Holy Day of Obligation since it falls on a Monday (January 1). While the faithful are encouraged to attend Mass, it is not required.
         To celebrate the Solemnity of Mary, Our Lady of Grace Parish will celebrate a vigil Mass on Sunday, December 31 at 5:30 pm and Masses on Monday, January 1 at 9:00 am and 12:00 noon.

FF = Faith Formation Office
MH = Madonna Hall
PC = Parish Center
PO = Parish Office 


Parish Census
         We need your assistance. Please update your parish census information if your address, phone number, email address or number of people in your household has changed. You can update your information by calling the Parish Office at 203-377-0928 and speak with Stacey, Monday through Friday, 9:00 am – 12:00 noon or email staceybreyan@olgstratford.com
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Use of Parish Property
       We are blessed to have such a nice parcel of land for our parish.  We have beautiful green space and a large parking lot.  People are drawn to our property because it is well maintained and clean.
Lately, we have noticed that people are using the parish grounds as their private recreational area.  Please spread the word, the parish grounds are private property. Anyone wishing to use the field or parking lot, for whatever reason, must first get permission from the Parish Office.  The parish is put at great risk when unauthorized people decide to use the parking lot or field for their own use.  The Stratford Police have been notified to keep an eye on our property.