St. Thomas More is a Roman Catholic parish comprised of various economic, ethnic, and age groups dedicated to welcoming everyone into our parish family to share our lives, our love, the Sacraments and the Word of God.
8:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.
Tues., Wed., Thurs., Fri. -
(See Bulletin for Holy Day Mass schedules)
Sat. 3:45 - 4:15 p.m. or by appointment.
STAFF / CONTACTS
Msgr. James Farmer, Pastor
Mr. Michael P. McCoy, Permanent Deacon
Mr. Michael Baxter, Permanent Deacon
Mrs. Jane G. Brown, Music Director
Mrs. Ana Rosario Trujillo, Coordinator, Religious Education
Ms. Maria Boling, Office Manager
Parish Center 410-444-6500
Religious Education 410-444-6500
Cardinal Shehan School 410-433-2775
In the late 1950's the neighborhoods around Perring Parkway were burgeoning. To help alleviate the crowded conditions in the four surrounding parishes, twelve acres of land were purchased on McClean Boulevard in 1959, and the following year, plans were drawn up for a school, rectory, and convent before the parish had a name. Construction soon began with cornerstones for the church, parish center, and convent laid in 1960.
In January, 1961, the newly appointed pastor, Father Thomas Kelly, held meetings with volunteers in a rented store in the
Hamilton Park Shopping Center. With directories borrowed from other churches, lists of potential parishioners were established and St. Thomas More’s first Mass was celebrated on September 10th of that year. Classes at the school began that same week under the guide of Mother Charlotte Marie and the Sisters of St. Joseph of Chestnut Hill.
Pastors succeeding Father Kelly were Fr. Edward Staub, Fr. George Loskarn, Fr. Richard Murphy, Fr. Victor Galeone, Fr. John Cunningham, Fr. Brian Zielinski, O. Praem., Fr. Pete Literal (Temporary Administrator), and Fr. Richard Gray. Msgr. James Farmer is the current pastor.
With a dwindling population of children, St. Thomas More School was closed in June, 1988. The school and convent buildings were leased to The Children’s Guild in August of 1988 while the
Cardinal Shehan School was officially incorporated and merged with St. Thomas More and St. Matthew schools.
The parish mortgage was paid off in full to the archdiocese on January 10, 1997, and was celebrated later that year.
At 13 Thomas was placed in the home of Cardinal Morton, Archbishop of Canterbury and Lord Chancellor, displaying merry character and brilliant intellect. Sent to Oxford in 1492 with a bare allowance from his father, he mastered Greek, spoke Latin fluidly, studied French, history and mathematics, and learned to play the flute and viol. Recalled to London in 1494, he entered at New Inn as a law student, transferred to Lincoln’s Inn in 1496 and soon became a judge, attracting himself as a lecturer of law at other schools.
He also wrote poetry, cultivated acquaintances with scholars, translated Greek into Latin, and gave church lectures on St. Augustine between 1499 and 1503. He explored his possible call to priesthood, but after vigils, fasts, and prayer, decided to take on the married state.
In 1501 he was elected to Parliament, immediately beginning to oppose large and unjust exactions of money King Henry VIII was making on his subjects.
Thomas married Jane Colte in 1505 from whom were born three daughters and a son. Jane died in 1511. His second wife, Alice Middleton, a widow, was his senior by seven years and was devoted to the care of his small children.
Already famed as a lawyer, in 1510 he became Under-Sheriff of London and in 1514 was assigned to an embassy in Flanders. Anxiously sought by ministers and the king to service the King’s Court, in 1520 he was engaged by the king and a year later knighted and made sub-treasurer to the king. In 1523 Thomas was elected Speaker of the House of Commons, also becoming High Steward of Cambridge University in 1525. By this time the Lutheran controversy flowed through Europe. By 1529 More became Chancellor of England where he dutifully enforced the laws against heretics. A few months later, Henry ordered the clergy to acknowledge himself as “Supreme Head” of the Church. Thomas More’s firm opposition to Henry’s designs in regard to the divorce, the papal supremacy and laws against heretics, lost him the royal favor. In 1532 he resigned as Lord Chancellor, lost his income and some rental properties, and for the next 18 months, lived in seclusion. Having survived his disagreement with the crowing of Anne Boleyn, bantering with Cromwell, the new Chancellor, and the removal of his name from the Bill of Attainer introduced in the House of Lords for those against Anne Boleyn, Thomas could not survive the 1534 Act of Succession requiring all to take an oath acknowledging Henry and Anne as legitimate heirs to the throne. Because of his refusal, he was moved to the Tower of London, accused of treason, had his land grants removed. Approximately a year in prison, he endured more false accusations and trials which finally led to his beheading in July, 1535.
This sacrament renews our peace with God and neighbor.
Confessions are heard on Saturday from 3:45 to 4:15 p.m.
or by appointment in the Parish Center.
This sacrament makes us members of God’s family, the Church. Baptisms are normally scheduled for the second Sunday of the month at 4:30, 9:00 or 11:00 a.m. Mass.
(Only 2 baptisms are conferred at each Mass.)
Please call the Parish Office (410-444-6500 )to meet with the
Pastor to schedule the baptism and to arrange for a pre-baptismal conference.
Baptisms are not held during Advent or Lent.
This sacrament seals the love of a man and woman in a life-long commitment. Couples planning to marry should contact the Parish office (410-444-6500 ) at least 7 months prior to the date of the marriage.
Marriage preparation classes are required.
(If an annulment or a dispensation to a previous marriage is needed, no arrangements for the wedding can be made until the annulment or dispensation is granted by the Archdiocese. The annulment process could take a year or longer depending on the circumstances.)
Adults and children (7 years of age or older) are received into the Church either by Baptism or Profession of Faith following the completion of the Catechumenate Preparation (RCIA) or (RCIC) process.
Contact the parish office (410-444-6500 ) for information.
Altar Servers -
Young people and adults who have received First Holy Communion, assist the priest and deacon in the celebration of the Mass. Open to boys, girls, men and women.
Lectors (Readers at Mass)-
Proclaim the First and Second Readings at weekend and Holy Day Masses,and proclaim the Prayer of the Faithful in the absence of a deacon. Each lector receives personal training by the Coordinator of Lectors .
Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist-
Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist (EMs) assist clergy in bringing Holy Communion to the sick and home bound, whether in private homes, nursing homes or assisted living facilities. and assist the clergy in the distribution of Communion at Mass on weekends and certain Holy Days.
Music Ministry -
We have an Adult Choir that sings at the 11:00 Mass every Sunday from October through May. We have an Adult Contemporary Choir that sings at the 8:30 Mass. Rehearsals are every other Tuesday from 7:00 - 9:00 pm. We also have a Resurrection Choir that sings for funerals, requiring availability during the week and on Saturday.
Serve the congregation by greeting people before Mass, handling inquiries, distributing bulletins, escorting the gift bearers, and seating late comers. Ushers take up the collections, assure safety and give assistance to ill or handicapped parishioners or visitors. They also guide the lines of people going to Communion.
Gift Bearers -
They are the people who bring the bread and the wine to the priest during the offertory at Mass. The bringing of the bread and wine symbolizes us uniting our own gifts of time, talent and treasure with Jesus' sacrifice of Himself, which is offered for us on the altar.
For Young People
Religious Ed. is for children in every grade from Kindergarten through High School, and meets between 9:30-10:45 every Sunday from mid-September to mid-May. Classes are meant to help all of our young people know and love Jesus, and to know, love and live their Catholic Faith. Sacramental preparation for First Communion, First Reconciliation (Confession) and Confirmation is offered yearly for children who have either been in Catholic School or in Religious Education for one year prior to preparation for the sacrament.
Children's Mass -
On the third Sunday of each month at the 11:00 Mass, young people in our parish serve as lectors, ushers, greeters and gift bearers. This is an awesome opportunity for our young parishioners to become involved at Mass and in the life of our parish. It helps them to better learn the meaning of the Mass.
Scripture Studies - .
We currently have a Bible Study Group that meets every other Wednesday from Sept-May at 9:30 am in the Parish Center. We also have an Advent and Lenten Scripture Study Group that meets after the Rosary, following the 11:00 Mass during Advent and Lent. These are excellent opportunities to know our Lord more seriously, more personally and more deeply through his Word to us.
Why Catholic ? Group -
This group is for adults and meets on Sundays between September - May from 9:40 -10:45 am in the Parish Center, while our young people are in Religious Education classes. The purpose of this group is to help us understand why we are Catholic. It uses the Catechism of the Catholic Church and Holy Scripture to help us grow in our understanding of what we believe and practice.
Rosary Group -
This group prayerfully recites the Rosary following the 11:00 Mass, for public and private intentions. This is an awesome opportunity to seek our Blessed Mother's intercession for our parish, our community, our country and our world.
Provides an opportunity for men of all ages to come together for fellowship, mutual support, and spiritual growth. Meets second Saturday of the month from 9-10 am in the Thomas More Room.
R.C.I.A (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) -
These are Christian Initiation sessions for adults interested in becoming Catholic, or for baptized Catholics who have not received other Sacraments.
Beans & Bread Casserole Ministry-
Beans and Bread is an outreach local ministry of the St. Vincent de Paul Society that serves hot meals to the poor and homeless in Baltimore. Parishioners of St. Thomas More make casseroles and deliver them to Beans & Bread.
Perring Parkway Center Nursing Home Ministry -
Every other Monday afternoon, members of St.Thomas More go to the nursing home at the corner of Perring Parkway and Oakleigh Road to visit Catholic residents. A short worship service is held, and then volunteers visit and bring Holy Communion to residents who are in their rooms. This ministry brings the joy and the presence of Christ to the residents and to the parishioners who volunteer.
Baltimore Pregnancy Center-
Members of St. Thomas More volunteer at the Baltimore Pregnancy Center on Harford Road, which is a pro-life, non-profit organization that helps women and children in need. Our parish has a giving tree every year that yields gifts for women and children who go to the center.
Faith based support group providing practical, emotional and spiritual assistance to women facing a crisis pregnancy in a spirit of Christian solidarity.
Franciscan Center Support-
Parishioners collect nonperishable foods and seasonal wearable clothing on the second weekend of each month to take to the Franciscan Center.
St. Vincent de Paul Ministry-
Currently, we serve the poor of our community by offering gift cards from Shop Rite to individuals or families in need.
Hospitality & Decorating Committee -
Volunteers discuss, plan and organize social events in the parish, such as the Thomas More Feast celebration, and other social events. They also organize the decorating of the Church for Christmas & Easter.
Evangelization Committee -
Meets periodically to brainstorm, discuss and plan ways to strengthen the faith experience of our parishioners and to reach out to fallen away Catholics and those who do not have faith. This group hosts periodic series and events in the parish to help us grow as Missionary Disciples of Christ.
Widow and Widowers and Singles Group
Meets periodically to share fellowship among those who have lost a spouse. or are alone.