News

Ash Wednesday, which is celebrated this year on March 6, marks the beginning of the season of Lent, a season of prayer, fasting and alms-giving which prepares us to celebrate Christ’s Resurrection on Easter Sunday.

While Ash Wednesday is not a Holy Day of Obligation, all Catholics are encouraged to participate in the Eucharist on this day in order to mark the beginning of the Lenten season.

Each year, during Mass on Ash Wednesday, a special collection is taken up in support of Catholic Missions In Canada. The stated mission of this group is to sustain and extend the Catholic Faith in isolated, poor and hard-to-reach areas in Canada. Many parishes in our diocese have received financial assistance from this group in the past and continue to receive funding from them. You are encouraged to be as generous as possible in supporting this special group.

MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS 
FOR LENT 2019

 

For the creation waits with eager longing 
for the revealing of the children of God
” (Rm 8: 19)

 

Dear Brothers and Sisters

Each year, through Mother Church, God “gives us this joyful season when we prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery with mind and heart renewed… as we recall the great events that gave us new life in Christ” (Preface of Lent I). We can thus journey from Easter to Easter towards the fulfilment of the salvation we have already received as a result of Christ’s paschal mystery – “for in hope we were saved” (Rom 8:24). This mystery of salvation, already at work in us during our earthly lives, is a dynamic process that also embraces history and all of creation. As Saint Paul says, “the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God” (Rom 8:19). In this perspective, I would like to offer a few reflections to accompany our journey of conversion this coming Lent.

1. The redemption of creation

The celebration of the Paschal Triduum of Christ’s passion, death and resurrection, the culmination of the liturgical year, calls us yearly to undertake a journey of preparation, in the knowledge that our being conformed to Christ (cf. Rom 8:29) is a priceless gift of God’s mercy.

When we live as children of God, redeemed, led by the Holy Spirit (cf. Rom 8:14) and capable of acknowledging and obeying God’s law, beginning with the law written on our hearts and in nature, we also benefit creation by cooperating in its redemption. That is why Saint Paul says that creation eagerly longs for the revelation of the children of God; in other words, that all those who enjoy the grace of Jesus’ paschal mystery may experience its fulfilment in the redemption of the human body itself. When the love of Christ transfigures the lives of the saints in spirit, body and soul, they give praise to God. Through prayer, contemplation and art, they also include other creatures in that praise, as we see admirably expressed in the “Canticle of the Creatures” by Saint Francis of Assisi (cf. Laudato Si’, 87). Yet in this world, the harmony generated by redemption is constantly threatened by the negative power of sin and death.

World Day of Prayer is an international movement of Christian women of many traditions who come together to observe a common day of prayer each year, and who, in many countries, have a continuing relationship in prayer and service. World Day of Prayer, initiated and carried out by women in more than 170 countries and regions, is held internationally on the first Friday of March. In 2019 that will be March 1st.  The women of this year’s host country, Slovenia, have chosen the theme “Come – Everything is Ready” (Luke 14:15-24).

We are pleased to welcome to our diocese Reverend Sunny Sebastian, a priest of the Diocese of lrinjalakuda, Kerala, lndia. Father Sunny arrived in our diocese on
February 2,and has been appointed to ministry and enculturation at the
Cathedral of the Most Holy Redeemer and of the lmmaculate Conception.

Father Sebastian was ordained to the priesthood in Lourdepuram, India in 1992. Since then he has ministered in various parishes and capacities in India, as well as serving in the Archdiocese of Edmonton, Alberta from 2007-2010.

Please join in making Father Sunny welcome in our diocese and in praying for God's blessings upon him as he begins his pastoral ministry here.

The Roman Catholic Church celebrates World Day of the Sick annually on February 11, the commemoration of Our Lady of Lourdes. This year, for the 27th World Day of the Sick, the main Eucharistic celebration will be solemnly celebrated in Calcutta, India.

This day of prayer, which was instituted by Pope John Paul II in 1992, has three themes. First, it reminds the entire Church to pray for those who are sick. Second, the celebration invites all Christians to reflect on and respond to human suffering and pain. Third, this day recognizes and honours all those who work in health care and serve as caregivers.

The message of Pope Francis for this World Day is “You received without payment; give without payment” (Mt 10:8)

You are invited to join with the rest of the Church in praying for those who are sick and for those health care professionals and caregivers who minster to them.

Dear People of the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador:

This coming Tuesday I will be installed as the Archbishop of St. John’s.  On that same day, I will be officially appointed the Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador until the installation of a new Bishop of the diocese.

I will share information regarding the appointment and installation of the new Bishop as it becomes available.  However, I expect it will be several months yet before those announcements are made.   In the meantime, I will try to spend some time each month in this diocese; and, be available when needed. The diocesan staff, both here and in St. John’s, will be able to contact me whenever necessary.  Once the appointment of the new Bishop is announced, I will invite you to join me for a Mass of Thanksgiving to mark the end of my time in this diocese; and, to publically express my gratitude and farewell to the priests, religious and people of the diocese.

The Office for Evangelization and Catechesis (English Sector) of the CCCB recently developed a new resource on Family Catechesis. The resource provides insight into the value of family catechesis as a means to evangelization not only of children, but of adults who accompany them.

The resource is available online (in PDF format), free of charge, from the Office for Evangelization and Catechesis (English Sector).  The resource includes three embedded videos from dioceses that have introduced new models of family catechesis.

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is celebrated annually around the world from January 18 (the Feast of the Confession of Saint Peter) to January 25 (the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul). During this week, Christians around the world are invited to celebrate a week of prayer for the unity of all Christians, to reflect on scripture together, to participate in jointly-organized ecumenical services, and to share fellowship. The resources for this year’s week of prayer have been prepared by an ecumenical team in Indonesia. The theme which they have chosen for this year is “Justice, and only justice, you shall pursue … (Deuteronomy 16: 18-20)”. Christians around the world are invited to celebrate God’s reconciling grace, to recognize the pain of the deep divisions which afflict the Church and to become ambassadors of Christ’s message of reconciliation.

On Sunday, January 13, the Church marks the end of the Christmas season with the celebration of the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord.

Over the season of Christmas, the Church celebrates three feasts which mark the revelation of God to humanity: Christmas as the Incarnation of God, Epiphany as the revelation of God to the Gentiles through the visitation of the Magi and the Baptism of Jesus as the revelation of the Trinity (Jesus Son of God present at the baptism, the descent of the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove and the voice of God the Father announcing that this was His Son in whom He was well pleased).

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