Sixth Sunday of Easter. It is also Mother’s Day. Mothers are so important, that even God wanted one! During the month of May, let us ask Our Lady, the Blessed Virgin Mary, to intercede for us! As our Holy Father, Pope Francis, invites us to a marathon of prayer, let us pray daily the Rosary asking Mary, our Mother, to help us remain in God’s love.
No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.
“Guess who’s back? Back again?” Deacon Steven’s back. Tell a friend. I am very happy to have him back here, staying at the rectory until his ordination to the priesthood. We are still waiting for the official date from the Archbishop’s Office. Let us continue praying for him as he prepares for the Holy Priesthood. Also, let us pray for Deacon Diego Rebeles who will also be ordained to the priesthood at Paroisse St-Joseph, Orleans. As well, let us pray for Marc Gaudet (Deacon Steven’s older brother), Kevin Burgess and Connor O’Hara, who will all be ordained to the Transitional Diaconate this summer – in preparations for the priesthood next year. As the Gospel this weekend reminds us, “It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you.”
This week I had another great Zoom meeting with our Deanery. Even during these restrictions our brother priests are trying to new things, especially when it comes to the digital mission. Fr. Sean Wenger, Episcopal Vicar, reminded us about the next Consecration window to St. Joseph for July 1 – praying especially for the end of the pandemic in Canada. We are all eager as well to think about possibilities for our parishes, and parishioners in the post-pandemic. Fr. Louis is already planning what he calls Gatherings in the Upper Room (aka Alexandria Pizzeria). Monthly gatherings, and talks on different themes of our Faith, with different keynote speakers.
Finally, this week was all about Catholic Education! I enjoyed the article in the Catholic Register by John B. Kostoff, who spoke of the reality of needing Sacramental Programs that help our children, but also their parents, grow in Faith. Our NGP Pastoral Council will be focusing on this as well this summer, planning for our Fall Registrations for Baptisms, First Communion, and Confirmation. If you know families who are searching, and asking about these questions, please have them sign up through the website.
Mr. Kostoff wrote about the reality that sometimes we expect too much from our young people, and at other times, not enough. He says, “survey after survey says that if you want to increase the Catholic content and practice of our students, then you should be addressing their parents. Most children reflect their parents’ level of participation, understanding and the lived-out experience of faith. We should not expect more from our students than we do from their parents. It is parents who are in need of evangelization, so that their fire can be passed on to all. This is not to say families aren’t trying, especially during this pandemic, but they need help.”
Indeed, he goes on to encourage our schools to find new ways this year to encourage families, and to support them on their journey of Faith. There has always been a close connection between families, school and parish. That is another reason why we hope to invite new volunteers, and parishioners in these ministries – Baptism, First Communion, and Confirmation, helping our parishes with new programs. Part of our mission is to help families gain more confidence, be engaged in the community, and to lower their stress as they help their children on the journey of faith, the journey of holiness.
Have a great week. Peace.