Select a Liturgical Ministry
The Altar Guild is a group of unseen angels who always get the job done. Love for the mass and a spirit of humble service prompts them to clean and dust the sanctuary (the front of the church where the altar is). They also wash the sacred vessels, altar clothes and altar linens, and keep the priests' vestments in good repair.
Contact: Helen Liscio
The servers are girls and boys (Gr. 4+) of this parish who assist the priest during Mass and are responsible for the preparation of the sanctuary before and after Mass. Monthly meetings are held to support and encourage servers in their ministry. Occasional social gatherings.
Becoming an altar server is a great way for children to learn about their faith and realize that they have an important contribution to make to the life of their parish.
Every year, the altar servers look forward to key moments of celebration, such as BBQ's and Christmas Party.
There is always a "Server of the Month" who is recognized within the parish for outstanding service.
At the annual Altar Servers' Awards Ceremony, hundreds of altar servers from across Toronto gather at St. Michael's Cathedral or at a designated parish to be recognized by the Archdiocese of Toronto. If you've ever wondered why some altar servers at St. Benedict were a cincture (rope around their waste), and not a white one, its to indicate that they are recipients of this Award.
Contact: Oswald Santamaria or Alberto Sala
An important part of the life of the parish is celebrating the life and death of our loved ones. Arrangements for funerals may be made through the parish office by family members or by the funeral director. Planning for your funeral liturgy is recommended. This may be done at any time by picking up a planning booklet from the parish office.
Funeral Mass Coordinator
The Funeral Mass Coordinator is a volunteer who ensures effective communication with everyone involved in preparing for a funeral Mass. The coordinator assists the family members of the deceased, the priest, the parish staff and funeral home director in the preparations. He or she meets with and helps family members plan the readings and music selections for the mass of Christian burial and assists at mass on the day of the funeral.
Celebration of Life Mass
At our annual Celebration of Life Mass, we remember and pray for all those whose mass of Christian burial took place at St. Benedict parish over the past year. The coordinator and other parish volunteers contact the loved ones of the deceased to participate in this mass. This mass is held on a designated Tuesday evening mass during the Easter season.
Contact the church.
The single most important thing we do as a parish is our liturgy; the work of praising God. Many people are active in these ministries that assist the community in its celebration of the Eucharist and Liturgies.
This committee is a gathering of the coordinators of the various liturgical ministries; altar servers, lectors, extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion, musicians, hospitality, environment and decorations with the pastor for ongoing liturgical formation and to plan for upcoming liturgical seasons and feasts.
This committee meets on average twice a year in order to plan and evaluate their animation of the different liturgical seasons.
Contact: Antoniette Pace
Ministers (Extraordinary) of Holy Communion
Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion (EMHC) are men and women who assist with the Eucharistic life of our community. They are called "extraordinary" ministers of holy communion because the "ordinary" minister is the ordained minister, namely, a deacon, priest or bishop.
EMHC are commissioned by the Pastor for a determined period of time, normally one year, which is renewable at the Pastor's discretion. The commissioning takes place in the presence of the community during mass.
EMHC are trained for this ministry and serve on a rotating schedule.
Helping with the Distribution of Holy Communion during Mass
EMHC assist the priest at Sunday or weekday masses, as required, in distributing holy communion to the assembly. Before mass, they prepare the communion wafers and wine that will be brought up during the offertory procession. After mass, they ensure that the sacred vessels (chalice, paten, ciboria) are carefully put away.
Taking Holy Communion to the Sick and Homebound
The most important service rendered by the EMHC is to take holy communion to parishioners who are sick or homebound. Because there are many parishioners who need this pastoral care, and very few priests to do it, the EMHC assist the clergy in this act of mercy, especially on Sunday morning when the priest is needed for Sunday ministry at church.
This concrete gesture of faith in action provides the homebound and those in hospital or nursing homes with a sense of community and belonging. Deeper still, it provides them the spiritual strength that only Jesus, present in the eucharist, can offer.
Contact: Doreen Colantoni
Ministers of Hospitality
The "usher" or "greeter" is more accuratley referred to as a Minister of Hospitality (MH). These volunteers are youth, men and women who welcome people and offer them hospitality when they arrive at church for mass or another functions.
We all know how important first impressions are, so the MH plays a very precious role in making sure the church appears to be what she is: a place where all are welcomed warmly and made to feel at home.
The role of the MH includes: offering people seating, choosing people to carry up the procession of the gifts to the altar in the offertory procession, taking up the collection, distributing bulletins as people leave after mass, as well as taking care of special needs as they arise.
Parishioners are trained for this ministry and serve on a rotating basis.
Contact: Carlo Sala
Ministers of Liturgical Environment
Ministers of Liturgical Environment (MLE) are volunteers who tend to the beauty, quality and appropriateness of the space where the Liturgy is celebrated. Beauty in art, symbols and colour contribute greatly to the assembly's full participation at mass.The physical realities that we can see can effectively draw us into the sacred mysteries we cannot see.
This team of parishioners work through the different liturgical seasons (Advent, Christmas, Lent, Triduum, Easter, Ordinary Time) to plan and decorate the environment.
Parishioners with artistic interest, creativity and talent are welcome.
Contact: Ann D’Souza
Ministers of Music
St. Augustine, the great doctor and bishop of Church, rightly proclaimed that one who sings, prays twice. St. John Bosco taught that a house without music is like a body without a soul.
With good cause then, do we take great pride in the rich array of music ministry that is available at St. Benedict Parish to bring life to our liturgies.
Each Sunday mass at St. Benedict enjoys its own musical style and repetoire. Our organists, musicians and leaders of song help lead the congregation toward full participation in the sacred liturgy.
Our parish musicians and choirs are available for ministry at weddings, funerals, and other parish celebrations upon request.
Adult Choir ~ 11:00 Sunday
Contemporary Christian Music Choir ~ 12:45 Sunday
Folk Group ~ 9:30 Sunday (Hall)
Italian Choir ~ 9:30 Sunday (Church)
Youth Choir ~ 5:00 Saturday
Ministers of the Word ~ Lectors
Lectors are men, women, and youth who proclaim the Word of God at Sunday and weekday masses. They are trained for this ministry and serve on a rotating basis.
For a lector to be effective as a minister of God's word, it is important that they have a personal relationship with the Sacred Scriptures which is nurtured by reading the bible on a regular basis, and ideally, meditating on the Word in private before they proclaim it in the midst of the worshipping assembly.
Requirements for this ministry include a clear, understandable voice, an ability to read well, and an ease with public speaking.
Contact: Natalia Ramnauth
Sacristans are men and women who derive their title from the room where they do most of their work, the sacristy. This is the room at the back of the church behind the sanctuary.
They do, as it were, all the "backstage" work that is necessary for mass to go well. They prepare the sanctuary (where the altar is) for the celebration of mass, they set up for funerals and such, and they make sure everying is put away properly after mass.
Often unnoticed when they do their job well, you definitely miss them when they are not there!
Contact: Carlo Sala
Planning a wedding is a joyous, but sometimes complex affair. Wedding Coordinators help keep it simple and focused on what is essential to the mass or ceremony.
They serve as a liaison between the parish priest, the bride and groom, and the various players who make their special day memorable. They assist the couple in the preparation of their wedding mass or ceremony, and welcome any and all of their questions. They coordinate the arrival times of florists. They welcome the guests as they arrive at church and tend to any unforeseen details.
Wedding Coordinators work miracles to keep the stress low, and enjoyment high.
Contact: Terri Lebrecque