News

The Executive Committee of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops encourages all Catholics in Canada to vote in the upcoming federal elections. In preparation, the faithful should reflect on their concerns and aspirations, familiarize themselves with the different party platforms, as well as with the candidates in their respective ridings, and come to a decision about whom to vote for with a free and informed conscience.

Click here to read the statement.

We are sorry…  and we apologize… (Part 2)

The Catholic Church’s relations with the indigenous people of this land pre-dates the Indian Residential School System.  Though fraught with its own difficulties, this relationship was seen as mutually beneficial and engendered a sense of respect and understanding.  Missionaries took the time to learn the various spoken languages and helped in developing a series of Indigenous Alphabets to facilitate translation.  Missionaries also served as mediators and/or translators in a number of treaties and agreements.

Considering the fair amount of trust between the Early Missionaries and the Indigenous Peoples of this land, the Catholic Church’s involvement in the Government of Canada’s Residential School Program was a betrayal of that trust.  Far from the original treaties that the Church helped to broker between the Indigenous Peoples and the Crown, the Catholic Church was made complicit in what the Truth and reconciliation Commission’s Final Report describes as “the central goals of Canada’s Aboriginal Policy”:

“To eliminate Aboriginal governments, ignore Aboriginal rights; terminate the Treaties; and through a process of assimilation, cause Aboriginal peoples to cease to exist as distinct legal, social, cultural, religious, and racial entities in Canada.  The establishment and operation of residential schools were a central element of this policy.  The federal government’s residential schools were part of a horrendous assumption that it was in an Indigenous child’s interest to be taken from his or her parents and to be culturally and linguistically reconstructed.”

(For a more detailed understanding of what happened, please read the Truth and Reconciliation Report: nctr.ca/records/reports, and scroll down to “Honouring the Truth, Reconciling for the Future”.)

We are sorry… and we apologize…

In this series of bulletin announcements, the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador not only wants to apologize for the Catholic Church’s involvement in Indian Residential Schools, we want to provide the necessary education that the Truth and Reconciliation Report asks us to provide to our people.  It is hoped that greater knowledge and sensitivity to what happened will help in the ongoing work towards reconciliation.

To begin, I, the Bishop, and we, the Church in Western Newfoundland and Labrador, echo the words of one of the original apologies made by the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate in 1991:

“We apologize for the existence of the schools themselves, recognizing that the biggest abuse was not what happened in the schools, but that the schools themselves happened…  We wish to apologize in a very particular way for the instances of physical and sexual abuse that occurred in those schools…  Far from attempting to defend or rationalize these cases of abuse in any way, we wish to state publicly that we acknowledge they were inexcusable, intolerable and a betrayal of trust in one of its most serious forms.  We deeply and very specifically apologize to every victim of such abuse and we seek help in searching for means to bring about healing.”

(For a more detailed understanding of what happened, please read the Truth and Reconciliation Report: nctr.ca/records/reports, and scroll down to “Honouring the Truth, Reconciling for the Future”.)

Dr. Anne Jamieson appointed to Vatican Council | St. Francis of Assisi  Parish
On Thursday, September 16 @ 7pm All Hallows Church, 109 Humber Road, Corner Brook join Dr. Anne Jamieson for a 1 hour session on:
Family Matters
"Not all lessons come from books. How we live, play, eat, talk to one another, celebrate, and forgive are all ways we teach our children about our deepest beliefs - who and whose we are. Join us as we consider how the 'stuff' of our lives matters. It's not about one more job for already busy parents/grandparents/catechists - it's about being more intentional in all we do."

Dr. Jamieson, is a wife, mother, author, teacher and life-long learner. She loves to share stories and practical tips for joyful sharing of the faith.  She is currently Executive Director of the Institute for Catholic Education in Ontario and was recently appointed to the Vatican Council on Religious Education.

If you cannot attend in person, join us on Facebook for the livestreaming of the event.

 

As Bishop of the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador, and in solidarity with our Indigenous People, Bishop Bart has issued a response to the Catholic Church's involvement in the running of Residential Schools in various parts of Canada.  The letter can be read by clicking here.

First World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly

The CCCB Standing Committee for Family and Life has released a short video message for the First World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly, which will take place on Sunday, 25 July 2021.  It will take place each year on the fourth Sunday in July, close to the feast of Sts Joachim and Anne, Jesus’ grandparents

"The video message brings to life the theme chosen for this day, “I am with you always” (cf. Mt 28:20). It seeks to encourage young people, families, and communities to draw near and to spend time with grandparents and the elderly, cherishing their essential role for the Church and society.

Pastoral care of the elderly is an urgent responsibility of the Christian community, calling us to spend time with one another relating and sharing in intergenerational conversations. Young people are especially encouraged to enter into dialogue with older generations and find time to dream together about our hopes for a better world." (CCCB July 19. 2021)

The video and other resources are  available by clicking here.

Returning to normal:

Provincial Health regulations are changing to allow an increase in numbers (with proper physical distancing) and with a majority of eligible people being fully vaccinated we can anticipate a return to some form of "normal" not too far into the future.

"With a return to normal...the dispensation from in-person attendance at Sunday Mass will be lifted, as each parish prepares to welcome its people home.  Live-streamed Masses will also be limited to a central venue serving those who, due to illness or old age are considered shut-in..."

Bishop Bart's letter is available by clicking here.

World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly: July 25Pope Francis has deemed Sunday, July 25 the first World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly.   In the future this day will be celebrated on the 4th Sunday of July each year.

The theme this year is “I am with you always” (cf. Mt 28:20), which conveys the closeness of God and the Church to the elderly and emphasizes the intergenerational closeness between the young and the elderly.

Pope Francis' message can be found by clicking here.

The prayer for the first World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly can be found  here.

In a statement on Tuesday, June 29, the Bishops of Canada said that a delegation of Indigenous People is scheduled to meet with the Holy Father from 17 to 20 December 2021, “to foster meaningful encounters of dialogue and healing.”

Pope Francis extended an invitation for personal encounter with each of the three distinct groups of delegates – First Nations, Métis and Inuit - as well as a final audience with all the delegates together on the last day of the visit.

The statement from the CCCB is available here.

Fr. Andrew White has been appointed as Diocesan Director of Vocations in order to continue the  work of promoting vocations to the priesthood and religious life.

Bishop Bart thanks Fr. White for graciously accepting this appointment and for establishing a greater prominence and cohesion in this important ministry.Father White is pastor of St. Ann's Parish in the Codroy Valley and can be reached there at 709-955-2250.

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