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St. Columbkille, Patron of the Diocese of Pembroke

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"O Lord open my lips and my mouth shall declare your praise"  Sunrise at St. Hedwig's, Barry's Bay

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  • Venerable Pierre Toussaint
    <em>Tousssaint-Louverture</em> | flickr
    Image: Tousssaint-Louverture | flickr

    Venerable Pierre Toussaint

    Saint of the Day for May 28

    June 27, 1766 – June 30, 1853)

     

    Venerable Pierre Toussaint’s Story

    Born in modern-day Haiti and brought to New York City as a slave, Pierre died a free man, a renowned hairdresser, and one of New York City’s most well-known Catholics.

    Plantation owner Pierre Bérard made Toussaint a house slave and allowed his grandmother to teach her grandson how to read and write. In his early 20s, Pierre, his younger sister, his aunt, and two other house slaves accompanied their master’s son to New York City because of political unrest at home. Apprenticed to a local hairdresser, Pierre learned the trade quickly and eventually worked very successfully in the homes of rich women in New York City.

    When his master died, Pierre was determined to support himself, his master’s widow, and the other house slaves. He was freed shortly before the widow’s death in 1807.

    Four years later, he married Marie Rose Juliette, whose freedom he had purchased. They later adopted Euphémie, his orphaned niece. Both preceded Pierre in death. He attended daily Mass at St. Peter’s Church on Barclay Street, the same parish that Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton had attended.

    Pierre donated to various charities, generously assisting blacks and whites in need. He and his wife opened their home to orphans and educated them. The couple also nursed abandoned people who were suffering from yellow fever. Urged to retire and enjoy the wealth he had accumulated, Pierre responded, “I have enough for myself, but if I stop working I have not enough for others.”

    Pierre originally was buried outside St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral, where he was once refused entrance because of his race. His sanctity and the popular devotion to him caused his body to be moved to the present location of St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Fifth Avenue.

    Pierre Toussaint was declared Venerable in 1996.


    Reflection

    Pierre was internally free long before he was legally free. Refusing to become bitter, he daily chose to cooperate with God’s grace, eventually becoming a compelling sign of God’s wildly generous love.

Divine Office

Bishop M. Mulhall's Letter On Euthanasia

My Dear Faithful,

The events of the past year regarding euthanasia have been a very troubling experience. On June 17, 2016, Bill C - 14 received royal assent, making euthanasia and assisted suicide legal in Canada.  In supporting euthanasia,  both  private  and  institutional  voices  have  neglected  the intrinsic  value  of  life  and  have undermined  the  fundamental  value  of  individual  freedom  of conscience.  The program  of  support  for  euthanasia  has  been  marked  by  misrepresentation and  manipulation, which in turn has created significant frustration for many people of  good will.

Read more...
 

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