Weekly Update 9/23/2020
Celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Mercy September 24th, 2020
A Day of Prayer and Penance in the Diocese of Columbus
Bishop Brennan invites us to join him in a day of prayer and penance on Thursday, September 24th the feast of Our Lady of Mercy. Let us this day, join our prayers in solidarity for our wounded and troubled world, with those of our Blessed Mother, Our Lady of Mercy who gathers us together under her mantle and brings us to Jesus.
Mary under the title of “Our Lady of Mercy”
Devotion to Our Lady dates back to the second century after Christ, and it developed widely during the Middle Ages. Mary is venerated as the Mother of God, Queen and Mother of countries, nations, cities, religious orders, religious and secular organizations, and as the Mother of every human being. The devotion to the mercy of Mary first developed in the East, and was then adopted by the Church in the West, which gradually developed the devotion, deepened it and gave it its own form visible in the areas of devotion and iconography. In the late eighteenth and nineteenth century, the idea of Mater Misericordiae began to dawn and it can be seen most clearly through the theological reflection in St. Pope John Paul II’s encyclical “Dives in Misericordiae”. (Taken from https://www.saint-faustina.org/in-the-church/)
Take some time on Thursday, September 24th to pray the Rosary or Chaplet of Our Lady of Mercy for the healing of our communities. Make an act of Penance by meditating on the Passion of Christ, denying yourself some treat or privilege, holding your tongue, offering a compliment, etc.
- Together, let us ask Mary to intercede on our behalf and bring us to the font of all Mercy, her Son, Jesus. The Chaplet of Our Lady of Mercy, along with other Marian prayers and devotions can be found at https://columbuscatholic.org/marian-feastsdevotions
More information can be found at https://www.actsxxix.org/national-day-prayer-fasting
Weekly Update 9/17/2020
Feast of Saint Robert Bellarmine
Monday, September 21st, we begin the new shared Daily Mass Schedule with Saint Nicholas at Saint Nicholas Church.
Monday Mass at 8:00 am
Tuesday Mass at 9:00 am
Wednesday Mass, with the school children, at 9:00 am
Thursday Mass at 8:00 am
Friday Mass at 8 :00 am
Since the Activity Center needs to be used by the Preschool during the week, and our Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel is really too small to accommodate the current requirements of “social distancing,” for the time being, Saint Nicholas Church is the appropriate place for our daily Mass in Zanesville.
Ordinarily I will celebrate the Masses on Tuesday and Thursday. Father Ralko will celebrate the Monday and Friday Masses, and he and I will alternate the Wednesday Mass with the school children.
I will offer a private Mass in the Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel each Monday, and the Wednesdays I am not able to concelebrate. The Masses which were scheduled to be celebrated on Fridays at Saint Thomas have been moved to other days of the week which didn’t have a Mass Intention. With this schedule in place all the Daily Mass Intentions at Saint Thomas will be satisfied by me, either in the Immaculate Heart of Mary Chapel or the Masses I celebrate at Saint Nicholas.
Based on your response to the proposals for new Saturday evening and Sunday morning Mass times, I will be informing you soon of my decision.
Saint Nicholas Church does not have the capacity to livestream the Daily Mass. Here at Saint Thomas we will continue to livestream our Sunday 11 am Mass each week. We are planning to increase livestreaming options at Saint Thomas by providing the Rosary on a more regular basis. We also have plans to livestream a weekly catechetical session which will be our RCIA program for now, and also provide other livestreamed adult education opportunities. The connection livestreaming affords us as a community has been invaluable during this unique moment. We want to continue this connection with you as we support each other and come together virtually as Saint Thomas Aquinas Parish.
From my heart to yours, in the hearts of Jesus and Mary—
Peace and blessing,
Mass Location Changes
With the start of preschool this Monday, August 24th, Daily Masses will be held in the Chapel in the Parish Center. Masses this upcoming week will be held at 8:30 am with Father Thomas as Celebrant as Father Sullivan is on vacation.
Due to social distancing protocols by the Governor and the Bishop, attendance will be limited in the Chapel for Daily Masses to approximately 12 people. Please accept our apologies, however, these Masses will be Live Streamed so that all may participate.
Weekly Update 9/9/2020
Feast of Saint Peter Claver
As the new school year begins– whether live, virtual or hybrid–and the parish’s activity starts up again, I want to take a moment to thank you for your patient endurance and steadfast devotion to Saint Thomas Aquinas Parish during this “new normal.” These days have been difficult for all of us, and your perseverance through it all has been a true blessing and witness to me, the staff of Saint Thomas and the greater community of Zanesville and Muskingum County.
Special thanks for your dogged remembrance to bring your missalette to Mass each weekend. Thanks, too, for remembering to sanitize your hands upon entering the Activity Center. Also, special recognition to all of you as together we wear the face masks! Its not easy–I know–but your commitment to this inconvenience is a great witness to your love of neighbor and concern for the common good.
I also want to commend those who stay after each Mass to help sanitize the chairs and doors, and points of entry. As they say, “Many hands make light work!” This past weekend was a great example, as we need a number of volunteers after the 11 am Sunday Mass to stack up the chairs and put in place the dividers to ready the gym for the Pre-School during the week. What took one person two hours was done by twenty individuals in 15 minutes!
Bishop Brennan, and the Bishops of Ohio, have informed us that the Dispensation from the Obligation to Attend Sunday Mass will be in place for the foreseeable future. I am happy we are able to provide the livestreamed Mass on Sunday to those who aren’t yet comfortable returning to public worship. I receive comments quite often from folks who really appreciate the opportunity to stay connected to the life of Saint Thomas Aquinas and our worship through these electronic means. I am happy we are able to provide this virtual connection to the Saint Thomas Aquinas Community and beyond.
We are doing everything we can to make our worship environment safe. I ask you who are healthy, those who have returned to work and to school to consider returning to Mass in person. We are all sanitizing. We are all wearing masks. We are all social distancing. Consider giving it a try. We would be happy to welcome you home!
From my heart to yours, in the hearts of Jesus and Mary—
Peace and blessing,
We are asking for a handful of volunteers Friday 9/11/2020 @ 3 p.m. to help set the gym up for weekend mass. With a handful of volunteers it should only take about 15-30 minutes. Thank you in advance for your help!
With the start of pre-school, the Activity Center can no longer be used for daily Mass. This requires that the Activity Center be dis-assembled at the conclusion of the Sunday 11 a.m. Mass. We are asking for a handful of volunteers to help with this process, it should only take about thirty minutes. Thank you in advance for your help!