Mass during lockdown

Because of the lockdown that started December 26 the local parish was not doing masses with the public. I thought that meant I would be celebrating Sunday mass in my sister's home, and so I contacted the pastor to see if I could borrow a "mass kit" and get some wine and hosts. Instead, he very generously allowed me to use the parish church for a private mass. On top of that, because we share a household bubble (and are less than 10 people) my family was able to attend -- how very appropriate for the feast of the Holy Family!

Thank God it's Monday!

OK, OK, I know most people think Friday is the best day of the week, but today brought with it something special: my first full day at the office, with our diocesan team. In some ways it was fairly mundane: for example, opening mail (see you can see today's crop of Christmas card in the picture) and getting my workspace (especially my computer) set up is just another one of those things we have to do. The thing is, I know that my work routines will affect those of all around me, so I want to get it right.

First mass at Christ the King

I had mass at Christ the King parish this morning. I was originally going to walk there, but I was a bit delayed (not all my stuff was yet unpacked), so I took my car. I received a warm welcome (after passing the mandatory COVID safety screening!) and thoroughly enjoyed worshipping with this community. The mass was broadcast live, but I don't believe a recording is available. As for my homily, I tried to focus on the notion of Mary as the new tabernacle of God's presence, and how we also can receive the Holy Spirit.

It's starting to feel like home

I spent the day today unpacking boxes. Felt good to start to make this place feel like home!

I find that we learn a lot about our priorities when unpacking. So, where does a geek like me start? With the computer, of course, and then the boxes and boxes and boxes of books. My library is starting to shape up! At least I was able to clear some space for the "exercise zone" I really want to have in my personal space. It felt good to do my stretch again, especially after all the heavy lifting today!

The journey to my installation as diocesan bishop of "the Soo"

Today I was installed as the new bishop of the diocese of Sault Ste. Marie in Ontario. It was the culmination of a journey that began on October 12 of this year, when I got the phone call from the Apostolic Nuncio informing me that the Pope wanted to appoint me to this diocese. I still remember how the Nuncio opened the conversion: "Thomas, I have good news! At least, I hope it is good news!"

He descended into hell

I got this message recently by Messenger:

Good morning Bishop! I have a question. Why do we say, He descended into hell in the apostles creed. This is brought up because my aunt of 98 had the Last Rights yesterday.

Here was my response:

Good question Joe. I am sorry to hear of your aunt being in distress.