Eleventh Sunday of Ordinary Time. We continue to share the seeds of the Gospel, inviting our brothers and sisters to an encounter with the Risen Lord. This is one of the three main priorities this summer, as we prepare for a new Pastoral Year coming this Fall, in September, when restrictions continue to lift. I spoke briefly about this a couple weeks ago – Belong, Believe, Behave – our current goals, along with our new parish office and parish calendar, we are focusing on Parish Vitality. This was one of the themes in my meeting last week with the Archbishop and a few other brother priests.
The Presbyteral Council meets four to five times during the year, and we help His Grace, Archbishop Marcel Damphousse in his pastoral decisions for the Archdiocese of Ottawa-Cornwall. It was a difficult meeting: 1) discussions on the Residential School System, and more to come with a follow up on our Kateri Ministry, and their chaplain Fr. Daryold Corbierre, 2) certain decisions from different Catholic School Boards, and new ways to build trust between clergy, teachers, and parents – current chaplain to the Ottawa Catholic School Board is Fr. Gerard Monaghan, and he – and Fr. John Whyte – will be addressing the clergy in an upcoming conference on this topic, 3) the stress of COVID19 on clergy, and a few other things, including 4) a continuing conversation on Parish Vitality.
What is Parish Vitality? Where is there fruitful evangelization? What are tools used to measure parish vitality, and different standards? Indeed, what does it mean to be a healthy parish? It was a great discussion, and I look forward in sharing more with you all. Our main priority this Summer will be to address how this affects our Sacramental Preparation, reorienting our Ministries in the lens and viewpoint of Evangelization. Our meeting helped us to refocus our efforts on our mission, the Mission of the Church – making disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Let’s think of new ways to share the seeds of the Gospel, inviting others to encounter the Crucified and Risen Lord.
Of course, this was the very conversation at the heart of the CCO Multiply Conference last weekend. We’ll have access to the main keynote speakers until December, and in the following months some of our leaders will get together to discuss these talks, and to continue to share our goals, and best practices.
Finally, we continue to pray for vocations – especially every Friday, with all-day Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament – for Deacon Steven Gaudet who will be ordained to the Most Holy Priesthood August 4. Also, next time you see Fr. Gilles Marcil, please congratulate him on 55 years anniversary to the priesthood! WOW! Felicitations mon frère! Union de prière.
Have a great week. Peace.