They’re literally praying for the playoffs in Montreal

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Tim Thomas might be standing with the Catholics, but the Catholics are standing with the Montreal Canadiens.

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Via the Canadian Press:

When the power play stinks, the injuries are plentiful and the offense is anemic, there may be only one hope for a lacklustre NHL team to make the playoffs.

Help from God.

The Catholic church has placed an ad in Montreal newspapers today encouraging people to pray for an eight-place finish — and a playoff spot — for the Montreal Canadiens.

The ad shows the Eastern Conference standings with every team listed except the Canadiens. In eighth place, the final playoff spot, it simply says, “Let Us Pray.”

Now, hopefully it’s obvious that the church isn’t actually imploring everyone to pray for the Habs (though it couldn’t hurt). It’s just a cheeky piece of advertising to help fill collection plates.

It’s not the first time the church has grabbed attention by relating to an issue that’s important to Montrealers.

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Via the Canadian Press (April, 2011):

The Roman Catholic Church in Montreal is sending a message to motorists as they approach the city’s crumbling Champlain Bridge: Say Your Prayers.

The archdiocese of Montreal hopes the words — displayed on a highway billboard — will draw attention to the church and encourage people to fill collection plates over Easter.

But the archdiocese is also voicing its political views on the future of one of Canada’s busiest bridges, which is a hot federal election issue in the region.

“For sure we’re associating with those who are asking for a safe structure,” archdiocese spokeswoman Lucie Martineau said Tuesday.

“But we’re not going to delve any deeper into this issue. It’s really just to associate with them in a humorous way.”