Do to others as you would have them do to you.
(Matthew 7.6, 12-14)
MESSAGE FROM THE BISHOP
Catherine Doherty’s insight on evangelization: first of three parts
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Last week, I informed you of my intention to share with you a wonderful reflection given by Catherine Doherty on evangelization. I am sure you will appreciate the great value of what she has to say, and that you will be able to draw wonderful spiritual fruit from it. Many of you already know Catherine as the founder of the Madonna House community located in our diocese, in Combermere. Today, I present the first of three parts of Chapter 7 of her book, The Mystical Body of Christ.
Sincerely yours in Christ our Redeemer,
+Guy Desrochers, C.Ss.R.
Bishop of Pembroke
Evangelization—good news as gift
Chapter 7, The Mystical Body of Christ by Catherine Doherty,
© Madonna House Publications 2013
Sadness and despair are rampant in our world, and we possess the Good News that can alleviate this anguish—we have a gift to give. Each of us who is baptized is called to evangelize, and there are innumerable ways we can do this—some new, some perennial. (There are also ways of ‘evangelizing’ that do not bear good fruit, pitfalls to avoid.) It is imperative that we ourselves live what we speak, that we seek to be on fire with love of God and become like Christ, imitating his humility, gentleness, empathy and self-sacrificing love. Friendship is a powerful prelude to evangelizing.
Evangelization is…the deepest identity of the Church; she exists in order to evangelize.
Pope Paul VI, December 8, 1975
Becoming like the One who puts fire in our hearts
We are in a new era of witnessing to Christ, of evangelization. To me it is simply God entering ever deeper into our Godless society. It is our being on fire with the love of God that sets sparks in the hearts of others. Even a few drops of love, of charity, are significant in a sea of complacency, indifference, or poverty. We are called to be a bridge on which others may travel to God.
To evangelize means that we love the God who sent us to evangelize. We need to speak as, act as, and imitate Jesus Christ. To evangelize, we need to be in love with God. However, not everybody can be immediately in love with God. One of the young men here said, “It seems to me that falling in love with God doesn’t happen all of a sudden.” True, I think for the majority of us God draws us gradually. But he does draw us, like a magnet.
And the Man/God who surrendered everything for me wants me to surrender everything to him. He wants a total commitment.
God asks tough things of us. Do you want to fall in love with a Person who asks tough things of you? Yet all the time something intangible draws you; you can’t help it. The liturgy, the reception of the most holy Body and Blood of Christ are the focal point that draws you. Slowly, inexorably, you move toward this magnet.
Then, somewhere along the line you answer “Yes!” When this happens, then the world changes and everybody changes because everybody becomes Christ: “Whatsoever you do to the least of my brethren, you do to me” (cf, Mt 25:40). Love of God and neighbour begins to grow in your heart, and becomes joy.
The disciples on the road to Emmaus were so taken up with the explanations of this Stranger who walked with them, who was Jesus Christ, that they found their hearts were on fire, and they asked him to sup with them because they wanted more (Acts 24: 13-35). Our hearts too, need to be on fire.
We also should be like the One who puts the fire into our hearts! That’s evangelization. It demands that I decrease, and the Christ in me increases, because really he alone evangelizes. When his voice mingles with my voice, then people will listen.
To be continued…
FROM THE DIOCESE
Please note that the Diocesan Offices will be closed Thursday, July 1st and Friday, July 2nd.
Summer Office Hours
The Diocesan Offices will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Thursday, and will close at noon every Friday from July 5th to September 3rd inclusively.
Yvette Bourque, Director of the Family Life and Youth Ministry Office will be reducing her hours of work from 30 hrs./week to 10 hrs./week and primarily working from home starting July 19st, 2021. Her responsibilities will be reduced to include coordination of the Diocesan Young Adult Ministry, overseeing upkeep of the Diocesan website and assisting in the discussion/initiation of evangelization efforts/initiatives with the Catholic School Board members and staff. She can be reached at 613 585-6301 or email@example.com.
James and Ellie Hrkach of Braeside will be overseeing the English Diocesan marriage preparation programs that normally take place. Their contact information is 613 279-1496 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Couples will register the same way as usual, either by mailing in a registration form or via the website.
If you have further questions, please contact Yvette Bourque.
THE EVANGELIZATION TEAM
Small Groups and Evangelization
By Pierre-Alain Giffard, Director of Pastoral Work
Evangelization experts say that if one desires his church to grow, one must keep the front gates wide open, create many side doors, and tightly shut the back exit. In this expression, the front gates are the weekend services welcoming the non-believers, the side doors are small groups contacting and hosting non-believers, and the back exit is an organization keeping the new believers within the church.
Dynamic small groups are always present in growing churches. And these small groups are usually intentionally focused on evangelization. A way to do this is to encourage relationship witnessing, meaning that small group members are invited to witness to people they already know. Research shows that a great majority of people who start attending church for the first time or who come back to church were invited by friends or family. This means that people are effectively introduced to Jesus Christ through friends and family.
Small group members invite non-believers to their houses and build loving relationships and invite them to the church at a proper time. Small groups are places that make people feel comfortable because they are not too formal. They are convenient for people who are evangelizing since they do not require special facilities and allow for faith studies (this can be easily done by presenting a video followed by a discussion). A church that desires to evangelize needs to develop this type of structure to accomplish its missional purpose.
A Message from the Evangelization Team
As many of you may know, the great project of evangelization of our diocese has been underway under the direction of Bishop Desrochers and the Evangelization Team members. In order for this to become a success, we need your help. The following prayer has been written and adopted by our Evangelization Team, and we ask that you pray this prayer for the success of this project and for the benefit of all the people of our diocese. Please click on the link. Prayer cards will be arriving early in autumn in your parishes.
Deacon Adrien Chaput
FROM THE CCCB
Prayer for National Indigenous Peoples Day 2021 – Monday, June 21, 2021
In honour of National Indigenous Peoples Day, the Canadian Catholic Indigenous Council released the prayer entitled Prayer for Tolerance, Forgiveness, Reconciliation.
Message from Deacon Adrien
I know this has been a difficult year with the COVID-19 Pandemic and with the lockdown restrictions. I know it made it difficult for Sacramental Preparation. I know I helped some of you get connected with on line Sacramental Preparation and at home preparation with parents. As we look ahead I want you to know that I am here to assist you with Sacramental Preparations. Please contact me at 613 732-7933 ext. 206, or at email@example.com.
St. John Bosco Conference Livestreamed Session
Calling all catechists, Catholic school teachers, youth ministers, evangelizers, RCIA coordinators, and anyone who hands on the faith to others! This is your time, your place to come be renewed in mind, heart, and skills. Experience many engaging speakers, moving worship, and outstanding fellowship that will rejuvenate you for life and mission. July 14, 6:45-9:00 p.m. Offered by Steubenville Conferences. Cost: free. https://steubenvilleconferences.com/.
MARRIAGE, FAMILY, YOUTH & YOUNG ADULTS
Steubenville Toronto Summer Youth Conference
The Office of Catholic Youth in the Archdiocese of Toronto has made the difficult decision to cancel the Steubenville Toronto conference that was scheduled to take place July 9-11, 2021 as well as the LEAD retreat scheduled to take place July 5-9, 2021. However, they ARE looking forward to gathering again next summer and hope that you will consider joining them at Ontario Tech University on July 15-17, 2022! This year, Franciscan University IN Ohio is holding a virtual “retreat” type of day that parishes or groups can host virtually either at a parish or individuals can register. The link to register is: https://share.steubenvilleconferences.com/toronto.
Our Lady of Lourdes Parish Mass Times
Sunday Mass during the summer months will be at 7:30 a.m. at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, 280 Lourdesview Drive, Pembroke. Visit the website at www.lourdesparish.ca.
Low Masses in the extraordinary form will be offered at St. Columbkille Cathedral at 9 a.m. on the first Saturday of each month beginning July 3rd.These Latin Masses will be in the form of the Liturgy as it was celebrated at the time of the Second Vatican Council—the same form which nourished the faith of many of our ancestors. English translations of the entire Masses are provided.
First Step Options “Baby Bump” Party!
What is a baby bump party, you may ask? Well, for the month of June, it is a COVID-friendly opportunity to gift the First Step Options Centre with items that are currently needed by our clients, minus the cheesy games and delicious treats! You can choose an item to purchase from a list and drop it off at First Step Options, or, if you can’t get out to shop, or don’t like to order online, no problem! You can still simply choose an item(s) from the list and mail in a cheque or send an e-transfer with the amount and the choice of the item(s) you wish to donate. For a complete list of items, or to donate, please call FSO at 613 635-7440, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You do not want to miss out on the amazing feeling of knowing that you have supported and helped to educate a family right here in your community!
OTHER CATHOLIC EVENTS
CCRSO YouTube Channel
The Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services of Ontario (CCRSO) have a YouTube channel called “Holy Spirit”. For example, a recent talk by Bishop Scott McCaig can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49tOrQ3Q4Bk&t=8s. We encourage everyone to subscribe to this channel as the more subscribers they have, the better visibility these talks will have on YouTube.
Development and Peace Diocesan Council Meeting & Fratelli Tutti Workshop
Join us and Bishop Guy Desrochers for our Development and Peace Diocesan Council meeting and Fratelli Tutti Workshop! On Friday, June 25th at 6:30 p.m. Please register at https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYtd–opzoqHNwIxZ6lH1F1zaZ2s3RrwWUH. If you don’t have computer access, you can still join us! Contact Tara Hurford at 613 738-9644 ext. 224.
Cradle of Hope – “Let us be born of the Spirit” John 3:5
On-Line Conference, Saturday, June 26th at 10 a.m. Hosted by Catholic Charismatic Renewal Council Toronto. For more information please go to https://ccrctoronto.com/events-news.
Camping with the Holy Spirit – Children’s On-Line Conference
Holy Ghost stories, camp fire songs, etc. on Saturday, June 26th at 7 p.m. Email email@example.com for more info.
“Mary’s Way of the Cross”
Sponsored by the Committee of the Annual Pilgrimage to Ste-Anne-de Beaupré and Cap-de-la Madeleine from pilgrims of the Dioceses of Ottawa-Cornwall, Gatineau, Pembroke, Mont-Laurier and Kingston. First Friday of the month on July 2, 2021 starting at 6:45 p.m. Special guest Bishop Guy Desrochers along with animator Sylvie Rollin. Zoom info: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87971621691?pwd=aDhOVVp0WjZVL3VMR2FYQTN3SzFoUT09. Contact Mike Budge at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Dialogue with God – An 8 week prayer journey
July 7th to September 1st (Notice sent through CCRSO). Whether you are new to prayer or are experienced in “mental” or meditative prayer already, the “Dialogue with God” course has the potential to lead you into deeper intimacy with God. $58 registration includes: Unlimited access to the “Dialogue with God” online course and bi-weekly Zoom meetings to share experiences and ask questions. Register early to receive access to the course by July 1st. Space is limited. First Zoom meeting: Wednesday, July 7th (7-8 p.m.). For more information and registration: https://ourladyofdivinefire.regfox.com/dialogue-with-god-group-journey (Kingston).
Encounter School of Ministry – Ottawa Campus
Summer Intensive from July 26-29, 2021 – 6:30-9:30 p.m. On-site and on-line! The Summer Intensive Conference is an evening school that provides a survey of the content offered in the first four quarters of the Encounter School of Ministry over a fast four day period. The content covered includes Identity & Transformation, Power & Healing, Hearing God & The Prophetic Gifts, Inner Healing & Freedom. Visit here.
Defending the Faith Livestreamed Session
During these trying times, God wants to give us bold and confident hearts to share his truth and love with joy! Live Streamed session includes a thought-provoking keynote, Rite and Just: The Power of Worship, by presenter Dr. Scott Hahn, a meditative time of Eucharistic adoration, and special guests. July 31, 2021, 6:30 – 10:00 p.m. Put on by Steubenville Conferences. Info: https://steubenvilleconferences.com/events/dfc/#!/livestream.
52nd International Eucharistic Congress – 5-12 Sept. 2021
You are invited to attend this very special event of the Catholic Church in Budapest, Hungary. The Congress will include a full program of events including daily Mass, testimonies, catechesis by various Cardinals, workshops, youth evening, Festival of Families, Eucharistic candlelight procession and closing Mass with Pope Francis. For complete program details and list of all speakers go to www.iec2020.hu/en/program.
Archdiocese of Ottawa-Cornwall – Financial Controller
The Archdiocese of Ottawa-Cornwall is looking for a Financial Controller to help lead the finance team. The Financial Controller, under the direction of the Chief Financial Officer (CFO), will primarily be responsible to assess both accounting and administrative controls and prepare reports for the management team regarding corporate compliance and internal policies and procedures. This position will facilitate any auditing conducted by third parties to ensure effective resolution and swift closure of auditing activities. This role will also ensure organization utilizes ethical accounting practices and standards. Full description: https://en.archoc.ca/financial-controller. Application deadline: July 23rd.
The Writings of St. Teresa of Jesus of the Andes
As a Secular Discalced Carmelite since the year 2000, and an educator since 1998, I, Barbara Haight Garcia, OCDS, edited a book entitled: The Writings of St. Teresa of Jesus of the Andes. St. Teresa of Jesus of the Andes wrote a diary and letters, during her teenage years, about her love for Jesus Christ, her vocation discernment, her work as a catechist, and her work among the poor in Santiago, Chile during the early 1900’s. She was also a scholar, an athlete, and a musician – and excellent role model. I believe that this eBook would be a great addition to the curriculum for the Pembroke Diocese. This eBook can be read on a personal computer, Kindle, and other electronic devices. Cost is: $5.00 CDN. Please check out the Amazon link.