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Toronto Catholic District School Board

Religion/Chaplaincy Department
Department Head: A. M. Lacaria
Current Department Members: M. Doyle, M. Greco, D. Hasznos, C. Kunanec, W. Nowak, A. Saunders, J. Simoes
Celebration of the Sacraments: Students at SJMP celebrate mass all together at least four times a year.  Namely, the Holy Eucharist is celebrated at Thanksgiving, during Advent, Lent, and near school end.  For the past couple of years, and through the generosity of Blessed Trinity Parish, Mass has also been held on Ash Wednesday, along with the distribution of ashes.  These opportunities for Mass supplement and strengthen students’ weekly Sunday partaking of the Holy Eucharist in their own local parishes.
Community Outreach: On an individual basis and as the need arises, Chaplaincy is available to meet with students to help with personal matters within a Catholic faith framework.  Students in all grades get involved in social service work, helping the needy in our community and in the world.  SJMP students raise funds and donate generously to those who struggle with poverty in Toronto and in developing nations.  Students appreciate this opportunity to live out their call to bring God’s love and justice to the world, under the leadership of Liturgical Ministers and their helpers.
Special Liturgical Services: At certain times of the year, special liturgical services and devotions are planned.  Students have participated in such prayer services as the Rosary during October and/or May, the Angelus Prayer and/or Wreath Lighting during Advent, and the Stations of the Cross during Lent.  These activities are often initiated by student leaders, under the direction of Chaplaincy or other staff members.
Other Special Activities: Students and Chaplaincy plan other celebrations such as Liturgical Services for Ash Wednesday, Holy Thursday, Respect For Life Week in May, and events on special religious days.  Students use their creative talents to plan and participate in these additional events.  Liturgical Ministers and their helpers often join special groups formed to celebrate religious days and/or support other co-curricular activities, such as Remembrance Day.  In addition, Liturgical Ministers play a vital role in leading SJMP in daily morning prayers prepared by Chaplaincy, over the P.A. system.  These daily prayers and reflections dovetail with the Church’s Liturgical Seasons and the TCDSB’s special initiatives.
SJMP’s Religion Teachers and Chaplaincy work closely and effectively with students to foster a dynamic and faith-centred program of instruction and co-curriculars, rooted in Catholic Christian principles.