Monthly Archives: April 2020

St. Bernadette Newswire: Messages From St. Joseph Pastoral Team

Good Evening,

Here are two messages from Father Brian and the Pastoral Team at St. Joseph Church….

It is a pleasure on our feast day, May 1, to send you, in attachment, a short reflection on St. Joseph the Worker, our patron. May he guide and protect us and, through his powerful intercession, may God bless us and our country with gifts of unity and peace.  St. Joseph Feast Day

Happy Feast Day!
Fr. Brian and pastoral team


Dear Parishioners of St. Joseph,
This Friday, May 1st, the Canadian Bishops, in solidarity with many dioceses and countries throughout the world will formally consecrate the Church of Canada to Mary, Mother of the Church.

This formal consecration will be done in order to seek her maternal intercession during the Coronavirus pandemic.  Bishop Crosby will celebrate a Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of Christ the King in Hamilton on Friday morning at 9:30 a.m. and consecrate our Hamilton Diocese to Mary then.

We, your priests, will celebrate our daily Mass for St. Joseph Parish at 8:00 a.m. that same morning and consecrate our parishes to the Mother of God.

It is recommended that we use the Consecration or Canada and Prayers of  General Intercession that  are provided for this celebration.  Both prayers are attached for your convenience.  They will also be posted on our Parish Website and other social media forms.     

I invite families and individuals to consecrate themselves and their homes to Mary, Mother of the Church as together we pray for her maternal protection during this pandemic.

Let us confidently entrust our homes and our parishes, our diocese, our province and our country, to Our Blessed Mother.  What a beautiful way to begin this month of May, dedicating ourselves to Mary by this consecration and praying the rosary daily.

Mary, Mother of the Church, pray for Us.
Be blessed abundantly by God and be blessings to your family and friends!


St. Bernadette Newswire – Letter to Parents from the Ministry of Education

Please click on the letter attached penned by the Ministry of Education outlining information about the following:

  • Extension of closure to May 31, 2020
  • Standards for instruction
  • Converting PA Days into instructional days for students
  • The partnership of Rogers Communication, Apple and the Government of Ontario for the Connected for Success Program and Connecting Families Initiative so students have access to devices and internet
  • Mental health services available

Minister letter to the parents v9 FINAL EN – April 28 2020

St. Bernadette Newswire: St. Joseph Parish Update April 25th

Dear parishioners of St. Joseph Parish,

In attachment, you will find the special bulletin special April 26.  It includes the Mass Intentions for the week (you will remember that we priests still celebrate Mass daily for you) and the prayer intentions, besides other information that will keep you abreast of what’s happening at St. Joseph.  Though our parish Church and parish office are closed, and all physical activities curtailed, our life as a community of faith continues. We stand together in this tremendous time of great suffering for many.

Some information and updates:

Our St. Joseph/St. Anne Youth Group, under the direction of Youth Minister, Mary Forcier, continues to meet on Zoom every Tuesday and Friday evenings for discussion, prayer, and fun and games.  They are a wonderful group of young people and we are all proud of them and their families.

After careful consideration and in discussion with many families and leaders, we have had to make the tough decision to postpone this year’s  Vacation Bible School until next summer. We know our younger children will be disappointed but the ongoing uncertainty about numbers of people being permitted to gather and our utmost concern for the safety of the children dictated this decision. However, new initiatives are being planned for the older youth, those who would have been the leaders of the VBS. Stay tuned for further information.

You are certainly aware that our parish Sunday Mass is celebrated on social media and can be followed on our parish Facebook page and on Youtube.  We are delighted that so many parishioners join us for the 10 am Mass.

The number of parishioners that follow our daily Scripture Reflection is also a great source of encouragement. These reflections are prepared every day by one of our priests on a rotating basis and sent out by email. If you or someone you know would like to be added to the list and receive these written reflections, please send me an email at

A special “shout out” to Mr. Al Simoes, Principal, and to the entire staff of our St. Bernadette School for the excellent job they are doing with our children through distance education. Without it, I think most of you, parents and grandparents, would have gone crazy weeks ago.

Of course, we are grateful for technology but it is not the same as the physical presence and warmth of the teacher in the classroom (and neither is a videotaped Mass: “You can’t eat an apple online or give a hug”) but we continue to take all the necessary precautions that will keep us all safe in this pandemic. So, please don’t ease up on the restrictions. Maintain the 2-meter social distancing, the regular handwashing with soap, the disinfecting, and, most importantly, stay at home, unless you have to go out for essential work, for groceries or to the pharmacy.

Above all, take care of one another, especially the most vulnerable among us. Pray for those affected in any way by this COVID-19 virus: those on the frontline who risk their lives taking care of the sick,  those who have died, their grieving families unable to give a proper farewell to their loved ones. and those who are sick with the virus and all other impacted adversely by it.

If there is anything anyone of us can do for you, please call the parish office: leave your message and we will return your call as soon as possible.

Day follows the night! be hope-filled followers of the Risen Lord.


Fr. Brian and parish pastoral team

St. Bernadette Newswire: Update April 25th

Good Morning Bears,

I wanted to take a moment by thanking all of you – parents and students!  We realize that this is a challenging time for all of us, and all the staff at St. Bernadette wanted to let you know that we are so proud of your efforts over the first three weeks of distant learning, and so thankful for your teamwork!  This would not be a successful endeavor without you.  Many of you parents are still working and trying to balance that with so many added pressures at home – we see this and say THANK YOU!  Many of you students are working so hard, connecting with their teachers, completing and submitting tasks and facing the challenges of learning independently.  THANK YOU!

The entire staff hopeful that this method of teaching and learning will end soon and that we can all be back at school together in the near future.

Next week will begin week four of distant learning.  Please remind your child(ren) to check in with their Google Classroom or D2L site everyday, ask questions of teachers when needed and keep a good pace of work.

Remember we are looking for a minimum of an hour per day for JK – Grade 6 and 2 hours of work from our Intermediate Grade 7 and 8 friends.  You can do it!

If you are struggling with distance learning, or you are feeling overwhelmed or you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to your teachers or myself.  We are here to help!

Grants you may be eligible for:
If you live in a Co-operative housing, see the Connected for Success program.
Families who currently receive the maximum Canada Child Benefit are eligible for the Connecting Families program.  Both programs offer $10/month residential internet service.

Here is a link that I thought I’d share. This might be very helpful for some of our parents:  Special Services At Home

Missing everyone and hope to see you soon!




St. Bernadette Newswire: April 22nd Update

Good evening Bears,
We hope week three of distant learning is going well. We are hopeful that we can get back to “normal” soon and that we can all meet again at school to finish the year.  However, with the Ministers announcement that we will NOT be back on May 4th, we are again focused on moving the learning forward from home.

This week is National Volunteer Week which gives us a unique opportunity to express our gratitude for those volunteers at our school who make a difference in the lives of our students and families. It is the caring volunteers who help our students to learn and make our school better. I invite you to join us in celebrating and applauding our amazing volunteers at our school.

We wanted to share some information with you to keep you informed. As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.

  1. Our school yearbook will be cancelled this year. We know this will be disappointing news for many of our students and their families. We will be working through the process of refunding monies paid for the patron page and advertising.
  2. Families who received school Chromebooks for distant led learning are reminded to complete the tech request form via School Cash online. It is important we receive this form for our records. This also serves a reminder for our community if you have not signed up for School Cash Online, please do so. If you require help with the registration, please do not hesitate and call the school at 519-743-1541 .Leave a message and someone will get back to you.  The instructions can be found at  School Cash Online Instructions  
  3. The Canadian Emergency Response Benefit is available for families who have lost their jobs due to COVID-19. You can apply for the $2000.00 per month if you have made more than $5000.00 in the previous month. If you have any questions, please contact Here is the link:  agency/services/benefits/apply-for-cerb-with-cra.html
  4. The next meeting of the St. Bernadette Catholic School Advisory Council is scheduled for Tuesday, April 28th at 6:30 p.m. As a result of the current State of Emergency resulting from the COVID-19 epidemic, this meeting will be held remotely on the Microsoft Team platform. To access the meeting,
    Link: Join Microsoft Teams Meeting
    Or teleconference at +1 226-241-2413   Canada, Kitchener-Waterloo (Toll)
    Conference ID: 132 837 136#
  5. We are pleased to announce that His Eminence, Thomas Cardinal Collins will be celebrating the province-wide Catholic Education Week Mass scheduled for Wednesday, May 6, 2020 at 10:00 a.m. EST. All students, families, staff and the broader Catholic community are invited to participate “virtually” in this celebration of the Eucharist by clicking on the link at the scheduled time:
  6. Kindergarten registry is still open:
  7. Please advice if your child(ren) will not be returning to St. Bernadette for the 2020-2021 school year. Whether you are moving or your child(ren) are changing schools, advance notification enables us to effectively plan for the upcoming school year.
  8. For those families who may be in need during this time, there are a couple of companies that are offering Free Learning Devices for students. These devices can be accessed at the following link:   Free Devices for Families in Need

Thank you for your attention to the items about and remember to reach out if you need it. We are here for you!

St. Bernadette Newswire: Supporting Children After a Tragedy Resource

Good Evening Bears Nation;

As you are probably aware, there was an awful incident that occurred in Nova Scotia over this past weekend.  Due to this event and our current pandemic situation, some of our students may have questions or concerns regarding their safety.  We have attached a resource that you may use to answer some of their questions and support them if needed.  The bottom two boxes in the infographic has links/contact information for supports that are available to you.

As always, we pray that you continue to stay safe and healthy, and we look forward to the time when we can all be together again.  God Bless you and your family.

St. Bernadette Newswire: Happy Administrative Professional Day

Hello Bears Nation,

Today, April 22nd is Administrative Professional Day.  Please join us in extending our thanks to Ms. Hanley and Mrs. Ciupa for all she does to support St. Bernadette school and our awesome community.  Both Ms. Hanley and Mrs. Ciupa goes above and beyond daily to support our students, our staff and our families.  Their patience and kindness are noticed and appreciated by everyone.

Thank you Ms. Hanley and Mrs. Ciupa for being you and all you do.


St. Bernadette Newswire: Updates Friday, April 17th

Good Afternoon Bears!

As we await an announcement from Education Minister Stephen Lecce to follow Premier Doug Ford’s announcement that students will NOT be returning on May 4th, we are hopeful that we will still have the
opportunity to gather as “normal” at school at some point this year.

We want to keep you updated with what is happening from the St. Bernadette School perspective.

  1. Every student is expected to be engaging with their teachers and completing work that is assigned.  Please make sure that you are encouraging your children, and if you need any help, please let me know via email:
  2. We are doing our best to ensure that Chromebooks are available to each family that requires one.  There have been three opportunities for pick-ups, and at this time there are no more scheduled pick up dates.
  3. Welcome to Kindergarten Night for new JK students coming to school in September will be postponed until we can confidently select a new date.
  4. The opportunity to receive Sacraments through the Church is on hold for now. Any questions about receiving sacraments can be directed to the Church.  When we return and we are in contact with the Church again, we will let you know.
  5. All school trips currently booked for this year are cancelled and money has been refunded via SchoolCash Online.
  6. Pizza Money has also been refunded to you via School Cash Online for orders that were prepaid.

As shared with you earlier in the week, please take a look at these links in order to help you stay connected!

  1. Umbrella Project Webinar – UP-WCDSBWebinarWorksheet-2
  2. COVID WCDSB Thought Exchange –
  3. WCDSB Pray@Home – The WCDSB Pray@Home portal is up and running via the WCDSB Learn@Home Please visit it to check out some of the resources available to your family there.
  4. A message to parents from Elmo’s dad

As always Bears, if you have questions or comments, please do not hesitate to reach out!

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