Fr. Rodney Letter to the Catholic Community of North Attleborough

9 June 2019
Solemnity of the Pentecost
Dear Parishioners,
As a Church today we celebrate the birthday of the Church when the Holy Spirit was thrust into the world enabling us to be the unified and holy people of God.
I write to you as I begin my transition as your new pastor. I realized when I said yes to Bishop da Cunha to becoming the pastor of Saint Mark’s, Saint Mary’s and Sacred Heart that I was undertaking a major task and I want to do so in the best way possible.
As I evaluated the unique situation of these three parishes I realized that Father Jack Schrader and I will not be able to continue with the current Mass schedule. To that end, I convened a meeting earlier today with representatives who had been identified as parish leaders by Father Costa, from all three parishes, to discuss a change and reduction of the number of Masses that currently takes place at each church. Change is never easy. I know that. However, I write to you, with the unanimous support of all who were in attendance to present to you the new Mass schedule that will be implemented starting the weekend of June 29/30, 2019.
Please know that this conversation was not taken lightly and we tried to accommodate, to the best of our ability, the needs of each church. Father Schrader and I can only celebrate two Sunday Masses and by exception a third per Canon 906, 2 of the Code of Canon Law: If priests are lacking, the local ordinary may permit priests, for a just cause, to celebrate two a day and even, if pastoral need requires it, three times on Sundays and holy days of obligation. Since we will not have the assistance of outside help, this is going to have to be the model we employ. As your new pastor, it is my fervent hope that I will be available to all parishioners and the current Mass schedule simply does not allow for this. It is my prayerful hope that moving ahead, this new schedule will allow for that to take place.
In the coming weeks and months, we will enter into dialogue as a united community so that the future of the Catholic Community of North Attleborough will be a bright one. Please be assured of my prayers for each of you and for our community of faith in North Attleborough. I eagerly anticipate this new and exciting chapter in my own life as a priest and in the life of our local Church.
With every best wish, I remain Sincerely yours in Christ, Fr. Rodney E. Thibault (Rev) Rodney E. Thibault, JCL Pastor – Saint Mary’s, South Dartmouth
New Mass Schedule Catholic Community of North Attleborough Effective: 29/30 June 2019 4:00PM Saint Mary’s 8:00AM Saint Mark’s 9:30AM Saint Mary’s 11:00AM Sacred Heart 5:00PM Sacred Heart (September-May) Saint Mark’s (June-August)