Fourth Sunday of Lent. A couple weeks ago, I wrote an article in the Glengarry News explaining why real men wear pink. It was an article discussing the problem of intimidation and bullying in schools. This weekend we do not wear pink, but rose! Rose is a symbol of JOY and HOPE in the middle of this somber season. We see rose-coloured chasubles – vestments – only two times during the liturgical year: on Gaudete and Laetare Sunday. Gaudete Sunday occurs on the third Sunday before Christmas during Advent. Laetare Sunday is today, the fourth Sunday before Easter. Rose, according to Church tradition, symbolizes an anticipatory feeling toward significant events on the Church calendar; rose vestments and decorations are outward displays of the Church’s anticipation of Christ’s birth and His resurrection. Our joy continues to be experienced in our faith with God in Our Lord Jesus Christ. As the Gospel Acclamation reminds us, “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so everyone who believes in him might have eternal life.”
As we do our common examination of conscience for the COVID-19 One Year in Review, we must ask ourselves what brings us joy? How do we grow in our joy during the ongoing pandemic? This week was a great week! I got to confess my sins in the Sacrament of Confession, thanks to Fr. Louis Groetelaars’ hospitality! Also, this weekend is all about our ALPHA retreat, – for our ALPHA Team -, along with 60+ candidates from our parishes, and a few parishes in Montreal. We have combined efforts to bring the best for our parishioners, helping them find joy in our faith in God in Our Lord Jesus Christ.
I have found much joy sharing online in the past few months, especially in the past few weeks in our share groups, and breakout rooms with respect to ALPHA, and our Consecration to St. Joseph (March 19). This pandemic was difficult on me as well, still preventing me on visiting our families as much as I would like. However, this new tool of evangelization, has helped me be connected with a few of you online! Again, let us continue to pray for one another. Spring is beginning next week, and I do look forward to more restrictions lifting, and more visiting family and friends!
Finally, Amazing Parish is in da house. I have continued the conversation with Alan, our consultant offering us coaching on new ways to evangelize. I have two more scheduled calls in April, then hopefully another one in May with our new Leadership Team. Also, I have continued these talks with Fr. Rob, from Annunciation of the Lord, via our weekly video chats. We discuss leadership, vision and mission in the Church today. Last week was all about priests being faithful to their day off.
So, what brings you joy? Have a great week! Peace.
ps. Don’t forget to signup for all things Holy Week, and Easter!