Dear members and friend of St. Barnabas,
At long last, the day we have been awaiting is finally here. After worshiping at the temporary altar in the undercroft for the past six months, we will celebrate our first Mass in the newly-renovated church this Sunday at 10:30 am. While work on the renovation is not quite 100% complete, it has sufficiently progressed to the point that we can emerge from the "catacombs", as it were. One of the most striking features of this project is likely the new ceiling in the nave, which now extends all the way to the peak of the roof. Another is the newly painted ceiling and walls throughout the church, and the new lighting. Most of the woodwork was been refinished, as has the floor beneath the pews. Those of you who have been upstairs in the past week have been able to see progress a little bit at a time, but now the overall effect of this transformation can be full appreciated. It is my sincere hope that all our parishioners, as well as many of our friends, will want to present for this historic occasion.
I am delighted that our choir, which has been on hiatus for most of the past six months, will return to the choir loft for the High Mass on Sunday. They will be under the direction of our new interim organist, Bernadette Smith, who will be playing the nearly-completed new organ. The installation of this instrument has been a long and complicated process, involving as it does the combination of a pipe organ by the distinguished Canadian builder Casavant with a state-of-the-art digital console by Rodgers. It's most fitting that it will make its debut on this our first Sunday back in the church.
As I've mentioned previously, with our return to the church, we are also launching our new Sunday schedule. There will now just be the one Mass at 10:30 am, a Sung or Solemn Mass depending on the day. Child care for small children will continue to be available during the Mass until the distribution of Holy Communion. Sunday School for children of all ages will now take place at 9:30 am, at which time instruction will also be offered for adults. Confessions will be heard at 10:00 am (as well as by appointment).
Finally, I am pleased to announce the launch of the new, completely redesigned St. Barnabas website, located at www.saintbarnabas.net. It will become our primary means of communication, so please be sure to bookmark it and visit it regularly for updates.
Yours in Christ,
Fr. Jason Catania