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Each year, on December 8, the Church celebrates the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. This Feast actually refers to the dogma that Mary was without original sin from the very moment of her conception and does not celebrate Mary’s conception of Christ through the action of the Holy Spirit, as many people mistakenly believe.

Today George Smith was sentenced for a crime of sexual assault involving one victim during the years 1978 to 1981 from his time of ministry as a priest in the former Diocese of St. George's.

Any allegation of improper conduct by a priest is an extremely serious matter.  The Church feels intensely for the pain of the victims, their families and all those who have been affected by such crimes.

The penalty of Dismissal from the Clerical State was imposed upon Mr. Smith in January of 2014 by His Holiness Pope Francis.

Dear People of the Diocese,

On the first Sunday of Advent in 2014, I wrote to you about the beginning of a diocesan-wide pastoral planning process; and, I asked you to pray for its success at your Sunday Masses.  A great deal has happened since then.

In 2015, an initial comprehensive survey was sent to each of the 52 Catholic Communities of our diocese seeking basic statistical information and an overview of each community’s sense of vibrancy and health.  In 2016 and 2017, follow-up questionnaires were sent to each community seeking ratification of the initial survey results and updates on each community’s situation and development.

The season of Advent, which marks the beginning of the Church’s new liturgical year, begins on Sunday, December 3.  The word Advent comes from the Latin word adventus, which means “coming” or “arrival”. The season of Advent begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas Day and ends on Christmas Eve.

On Sunday, November 26, we celebrate the Feast of the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. This Feast is celebrated on the final Sunday of Ordinary Time,  marking the end of the liturgical year.

On Sunday, November 19, Roman Catholics will celebrate the first annual World Day of the Poor. This new world day of prayer was officially announced by Pope Francis in a letter dated June 13, 2017 and is to be observed annually on the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time, the Sunday preceding the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. The theme this year is “Let us love, not with words, but with deeds”, inspired by the First Letter of John (3:18).

Development and Peace – Caritas Canada is responding in Bangladesh at the border area with Myanmar in the district of Cox’s Bazar. It is supporting a food distribution program with its partner Caritas Bangladesh.

The Canadian government announced on October 31st, 2017 that it will match admissible donations made before November 28th to an eligible Canadian charitable organization, which includes Development and Peace.  To donate go to the Myanmar Crisis Relief Fund.

We are pleased to welcome to our Diocese Reverend Mathew George, CFIC, a member of the Congregation of the Sons of the Immaculate Conception, who arrived in the Diocese on October 31. Please join in welcoming Father to the diocese and praying for God’s blessing upon his ministry.

The Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed, more commonly referred to as All Souls Day, is observed annually on November 2. This is a day set aside for honoring the dead and praying for the souls of the faithful departed; it is not a holy day of obligation.

November 1st is the Solemnity of All Saints, a day dedicated to all of the saints of the Church, both those known and unknown.

In the early years of the Church, the tradition was to celebrate the martyrdom of saints on the anniversary of their martyrdom. However, when martyrdoms increased during the persecutions of the late Roman Empire, many local dioceses instituted a common feast day in order to be certain that all martyrs, both known and unknown, were properly honored.

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