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Cardinal Thomas Collins poses with the graduating class from St. Augustine’s Seminary in March. Eight men will be ordained in Toronto June 27. Photo by Emanuel Pires

Canadian dioceses charting course for ordinations

  • June 20, 2020

The easing of COVID-19 restrictions and gradual re-opening of churches across Canada has allowed bishops to reschedule priest and deacon ordinations that were postponed in May.

In Toronto, eight men will be ordained to the priesthood on June 27 by Cardinal Thomas Collins at St. Michael’s Cathedral. Scheduled for May 9, the ordinations were originally expected to be delayed until at least August.

The archdioceses of Regina, Ottawa-Cornwall and Edmonton are also preparing for summer ordinations.

Regina is poised to be first out of the gate with the ordination of deacon candidate Christian Lindenbach on June 19. A date for the priesthood ordination of Andrew Lindenbach and Christopher Juchacz is still on hold, pending a further loosening on capacity restrictions in Saskatchewan churches.

Ottawa-Cornwall is planning to welcome Steve Gaudet to the diaconate on June 20 at Finnan’s Basilica in Alexandria, Ont. Jonathan Kelly’s ordination to the priesthood is scheduled for Ottawa’s Notre Dame Cathedral on Aug. 6.

The eight transitional deacons to be ordained in Toronto are Joshua Lobo, Martin Dicuangco, John Sutka, Neil Pereira, Michael Corpus, Ji-Hwan Cho, Andre Lima and Rafał Bartosiński. Attendance is by invitation only due to distancing restrictions that limit attendance in Ontario churches to 30-per-cent capacity.

The Archdiocese of Edmonton will ordain Curtis Berube and JD Carmichael as priests on June 29 at St. Joseph’s Basilica. Participants will wear face masks during parts of the event, said Fr. Kris Schmidt, the master of ceremonies for the ordination.

“Any time the ordinand and the Archbishop are interacting — there are a few points where there is close contact like the anointing of hands and the handing off of sacred vessels — they will be wearing masks,” explained Schmidt.

Schmidt anticipates less than 50 people will be allowed to attend. There will be no singing or instrumentation.

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