April 19, 2020

Good friends,

With the new extension of the stay at home order by the Governor until May 20th, it is time for me to address with you the ways in which we will continue to serve the parish of Our Lady of Grace. We will continue to have mass for you on the weekends which will be videotaped and aired by the parish website and on Facebook. We will continue to have private masses by me each day for the parish and for the intentions of those listed in the bulletin. We will continue to publish a weekly bulletin so that you will be informed and we will use calling post and email to give you information to give you spiritual strength during these next five weeks. We will continue to serve our people through ministry to specific groups within the parish. Our Faith Formation program will support our families with children by email. Our outreach to the homebound and the sick will continue with friendly phone calls and various support. We will begin exploring methods of bringing our parishioners together in small groups by video chat and other means. I have been trying to learn the process of video conferencing and video chats. If you wish to speak to me on a spiritual matter or for some guidance please call and we can make an appointment to either speak to you by phone or by video chat. I will be contacting the parish leaders and meeting with them to see if we can bring groups together like our catechists and our building and grounds committee using the video chat as a way to meet. I would like to thank all of you for your support, your many emails and phone calls of encouragement to me. Your prayers are always helpful and I thank you. And I hope that you will continue to support our parish and the work that is being done. You encourage me by your support! I ask God to bless you.

Msgr. Ryan

April 12, 2020

 Dear Friends, 

May I wish you a Blessed Easter! May the Risen Lord who we celebrate today hold you in His hands! I have had the Cross behind the Altar changed to the Cross of the Risen Lord! The Hands of Jesus are extended to you and your families. I offer you the hope that Jesus gives to the world. 

I am concerned for your health and ask you to take great care! I hope that you will read the bulletin or visit our website for your spiritual encouragement! 

I continue to offer Mass for you each day! Our Faith Formation families continue to receive weekly lessons, and our home bound are receiving calls. Please pray for all people in the parish. 

I will be contacting you after Easter with new opportunities in prayer and learning, Bible study. 

Confessions 

The Corona virus has changed our lives and customs. At this time of year, a priest finds many people seeking the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Sadly, our Penance room has no ventilation therefore should not be used during this time of Coronavirus. It does not allow for the proper social distancing! On Saturday, I have been meeting those seeking confession in the parking lot! You can also call for an appointment to meet. 

Please let me suggest some pastoral care to those, who might miss their confession during Holy Week and Easter. My father taught me about his seeking the Sacraments during his time in service during World War II. He would say a good Act of Contrition each day and speak to God from his heart with the intention to go to confession as soon as he was able! 

Adult Act of Contrition 

My God, I am sorry for my sins with all my heart. In choosing to do wrong, and failing to do good, I have sinned against You whom I should love above all things. I firmly intend, with Your help, to do penance, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. 

Children’s Act of Contrition 

Dear God, I am sorry for all my sins. I am sorry for the wrong things I have done. I am sorry for the good things I have failed to do. I will try to do better. Help me to show Your love. Amen

May the Love and Hope, of the Risen Lord be with you!

Msgr. Ryan

 

April 5, 2020

Dear Friends, 

On March 25, Bishop Caggiano notified us that he has extended the directive of “masses without Congregation to April 30th (this will apply to all parish events also). This will have a great effect on our Holy Week Mass, prayer, and traditions. I hope in working with a small committee we will be able to offer to you some spiritual time. The plan is as follows: 

We will continue to offer mass by videotape each weekend through our website. 

I will continue to send a daily spiritual word by robocall. 

There will be a weekly message to our Faith Formation and Bethlehem Families from Denise Bartelson. 

Our Homebound parishioners will continue to receive calls of greeting and encouragement. 

I will communicate with our parish leaders and their associates to continue to spread the word . 

I will need each one’s help to continue to feed the parish at this time. We are having some difficulty in communicating with some parishioners, please read the separate announcement for “those not receiving parish communication!”

I am attaching an article from Bishop Caggiano addressing questions people are asking. Please share this with others! click here

Thank you to those who continue to make their donations! We do operate on our weekly donations and the coronavirus has hindered our parish donations. You may make your donation through the mail, or by using the new drop-box to the left of the garage! We also invite you to use our on-line giving program. You can find more information by clicking on this link. 

Pope Francis sends this video message to Christians around the world as we prepare to celebrate Holy Week in an unusual manner due to the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. He prays especially for those suffering and for all the families whose lives have been upset in this difficult time. You may click here to view the video.

Palm Sunday will be celebrated on April 5th. The Mass will be celebrated in private. Palms will be blessed and the full Passion will be read by the Celebrant. The Palms will not be distributed at this time. They will be kept for a later date. Hopefully we will share the Palms on Pentecost! The Chrism Mass will be celebrated this year at the Cathedral by the Bishop and live-streamed! At this Mass the Bishop will bless the Holy Oils , and will renew the Promises of the Priests of the Diocese. If you are able, please watch the Chrism Mass on the Diocesan website

The Solemn Celebration of The Lord’s Supper (Holy Thursday), The Passion of the Lord, (Good Friday), and the Easter Vigil will be live streamed for the parish. Each Mass or ceremony will be adapted to fit this very difficult time. 

For the Lord Supper, there will be no washing of the Feet, and no procession to the Altar of Repose. 

For the Passion of the Lord there will be the full reading of the Passion and the Veneraion of the Cross. The Cross will be venerated by profound bow or genuflection.

Blessing of Food – There will be a link on the website for the Blessing of Food.

The Easter Vigil will be celebrated and will include the Blessing of the New Light, the reading of God’s word, The Blessing of the new water. 

Finally, Our Easter Sunday Mass will be live streamed on Easter Sunday April 12th at 10am. 

May the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus strengthen us and heal our Nation! 

Msgr. Ryan 

March 29, 2020

Dear Parishioners,

I hope and pray that your health is strong! I pray that your mind and heart is at peace! 

The March 29th bulletin can be found on the website on the Bulletin tab. There are also hard copies in the Church or the box by the rectory garage. 

The Fifth Sunday of Lent mass has been put on the website. You may view this weekend’s mass by clicking on the link above this message!.you can also view the mass on our YouTube channel, Our Lady of Grace Roman Catholic Church Stratford CT and if you have a smart TV on it’s YouTube channel. Please pray the Spiritual Communion prayer at Communion time you can find it in the Bulletin. 

If you missed praying the 5th Sunday Rosary, you can view and pray it here.

I am attaching an article from Bishop Caggiano addressing questions people are asking. Please share this with others! click here 

Thank you to those who continue to make their donations! We do operate on our weekly donations and the coronavirus has hindered our parish donations. You may make your donation through the mail, or by using the new drop-box to the left of the garage! We also invite you to use our on-line giving program. You can find more information by clicking on this link. 

Since the suspension of public Masses has been extended, our parish plans are changing almost daily, I will be emailing you soon with the plan for Palm Sunday, Holy Week and Easter. The plan will also be posted here. All other parish activities and events are cancelled until April 30th.

 

Knights of Columbus Palm Crosses can be picked up on Saturday April 4th between 9 am and 11 am. in the parking lot by the Parish Center

The Bishop called me on Thursday to check on my health. He asked me to convey to you his prayers!
Msgr. Ryan

 

 

Pastor’s Message – March 25, 2020

Dear Friends,

Bishop Frank J. Caggiano announced today that there will be no public Liturgical Celebrations for Holy Week, the Triduum and Easter or through April 30, 2020. To read the announcement please click here. As Bishop Caggiano sends the pastors updates, i will share them with you. We are looking into the best ways to share Sunday masses, Holy Week, the Triduum and Easter with you. We will keep you informed. As of now Bishop Caggiano has said, “Blessed palms can be distributed at a later date that will be designated; tentatively Pentecost Sunday, so all parishes can distribute blessed palms on the same day. The Diocese is also inviting everyone to join in Nine Days of Prayer. For more information and to join click here.

I continue to offer Mass each day for scheduled intentions and to remember you in my daily intentions. Our Church is open each day from 10am until 2pm for private prayers. Please practice social distancing We tried to videotape this weekends Mass but had some technical issues. We hope that you will find the weekend Mass on our website starting March 29th.

The parish office is closed to the public as we practice social distancing. We invite you to call and leave your messages. We will return your calls in a timely manner. The parish will continue to publish the weekly bulletin. We will email a copy to the 527 email addresses that we currently have on our census. If we do not have your email address please call the office so we can add you to the list. You may also view the bulletin on-line at our website <www. Olgstratford.com>. Bulletins are available outside the parish garage in a folder box. Please read the bulletin for Up To Date information.

Offertory Donation – To make donations during this time of masses being cancelled please consider:

1. Mailing your donation to the Parish directly.

2. Dropping off your donation in lock box that has been installed outside the garage located next to the rectory sidewalk.

3. Go online to our EFT/Online Giving and sign up temporarily. Click here for the link.

Please call Stacey at the Parish Office (203) 377-0928 x13 with any questions or concerns.

Click here to read Bishop Caggiano’s letter to us, the faithful of the Diocese.

]Msgr. Ryan