Dear People of the Diocese,

The Gospel passage proclaimed at Masses on the afternoon and evening of Easter Sunday is St. Luke’s account of the two disciples meeting and walking with Jesus on the road to Emmaus (Lk. 24: 13-35).  (This same scripture passage is proclaimed at Masses on the Wednesday after Easter and on the 3rd Sunday of Easter in the Year A cycle of readings.)  It is a beautiful passage of Scripture.  These two disciples are leaving Jerusalem depressed and dejected, their hopes in Jesus crushed.  As they walk along the road speaking of Jesus’ crucifixion and death, Jesus himself joins them and walks along with them, although they do not recognize him.  Jesus engages them in conversation and explains to them the prophecies about his suffering and death.  Only when he joins them at table and takes the bread and breaks it do they recognize who he is.  Immediately their sorrow and sadness is turned to joy and they return to Jerusalem that same day to share with the Apostles and their companions what had happened to them on the road to Emmaus.

It seems to me that this scripture passage not only provides us with the account of an appearance of the Resurrected Christ, but also invites us to reflect on the image of Jesus walking with each of us as we journey through life.  One of the messages this scripture passage gives to me is that I am never alone, that always Jesus walks beside me, wishing to share with me his love and explain to me his message of salvation.

Once the two disciples on the road to Emmaus had recognized Jesus, and he had then vanished from their sight, they said to each other: “Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road, while he was opening the scriptures to us?”  As we celebrate the Solemnity of Easter this year, I pray that each of us will be open to the presence of Jesus journeying with us.  Like those two disciples on the road to Emmaus, I pray we will be blessed both with feeling “our hearts burning within us” because of his presence, and with recognizing his presence and love for us in the Eucharist (i.e. the “breaking of the bread”).

Sincerely yours in the Risen Lord,

+Peter Hundt

Bishop of Corner Brook and Labrador

The Easter Triduum - from the evening of Holy Thursday to the evening of Easter Sunday - is the summit of the Liturgical Year of the Church. Though chronologically three days, they are liturgically one day, unfolding for us the unity of Christ's Paschal Mystery.

The single celebration of the Triduum marks the end of the Lenten season, and leads to the Mass of the Resurrection of the Lord at the Easter Vigil.

The liturgical services that take place during the Triduum are :

Mass of the Lord's Supper

Good Friday of the Lord's Passion

the Easter Vigil and the Mass of the Resurrection of the Lord

Each year on Good Friday, dioceses and parishes in Canada and around the world hold a collection for the needs of the Church in the Holy Land. In the celebration of the Lord’s Passion, Catholics pray for the needs of all the world and they remember in a special way the Holy Land and its people. Christians living in the Holy Land today are descendants to those who first believed and lived the Christian faith. The funds collected are used to support the work of the Catholic Church - providing Christian formation and education, conducting parish ministry, offering housing and food to the poor and maintaining the shrines of the Holy Land.

The Sacrament of Reconciliation, also known as Confession and the Sacrament of Penance, is a Sacrament of Healing in which we encounter and celebrate in a very special way the merciful love of God.  While it is especially important that we bring to this sacrament mortal sins, it is a precept of our Church that we celebrate this sacrament at least once a year.  Speaking of the beauty and benefits of this sacrament, even when we have no serious sins to confess, St. Francis de Sales, a patron saint of Confessors, said:  “By confession, you not only receive absolution from the venial sins you confess, but likewise strength to avoid them, light to discern them well and grace to repair all the damage you may have sustained by them. You will also practice the virtues of humility, obedience, sincerity and charity: in a word, in this one act of confession, you shall exercise more virtues than in any other whatsoever.” Lent is a wonderful time to celebrate this sacrament.  Please check  your parish’s confession times and consider celebrating this sacrament soon.

Each year on Passion Sunday the Church observes World Youth Day. This 33rd World Youth Day (WYD has as its theme "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God" (Luke 1:30). In the introduction of his annual message for World Youth Day, Pope Francis writes that it "represents another step in preparation for the international WYD due to take place in Panama in January 2019... and falls in the same year that the Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops will meet on the theme: Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment." He continues stressing that "the focus, prayer and reflection of the Church will turn to you young people, with the desire to receive and, above all, to embrace the precious gift that you are to God, to the Church and to the world." Read the Pope’s full message on the next page.

March 19th is the Feast of Saint Joseph, husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Saint Joseph is the patron saint of the universal Church, the patron saint of Canada and one of two patron saints of the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador.

Sunday, March 18th, is Solidarity Sunday, so-called because we are invited on this day to do something concrete to express our solidarity with those in the global south who struggle for dignity and justice. On Sunday, March 18th, there will be a special collection in all of our parishes in support of Development and Peace. We are encouraged during Lent to engage in alms-giving; the annual special collection in support of this organization provides us an excellent opportunity to do so.

Click here to watch a video entitled Lent: A Time for Sharing

The Mass of Chrism  will take place at the Cathedral of the Most Holy Redeemer and of the Immaculate Conception , 15 Mount Bernard Avenue, Corner Brook, on Wednesday, March 21 at 7pm.

Mr. Brian Buckle joined the staff of the Diocesan Pastoral Centre in the position of Diocesan Financial Administrator, effective Monday, March 5th.  He is taking over this position from Mr. Robert Hutchings.

“24 Hours for the Lord” is a Lenten initiative organized by the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization. It is to be observed on the Friday and Saturday preceding the Fourth Week of Lent, which this year is March 9-10.  The purpose of this initiative is to provide an opportunity for the faithful to encounter Jesus Christ in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and in Eucharistic Adoration.

Please check with your local parish for further details.

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