SEPTEMBER 27, 2020
The Theme for this year is “Like Jesus Christ, forced to flee. Welcoming, protecting, promoting and integrating internally displaced persons.”
In his message for this year Pope Francis says:
At the beginning of this year . . . I pointed to the tragedy of internally displaced people as one of the challenges of our contemporary world. . . . In the light of the tragic events that have marked 2020, I would like this Message, although concerned with internally displaced persons, to embrace all those who are experiencing situations of precariousness, abandonment, marginalization and rejection as a result of COVID-19. . . ..
Unfortunately, in our own times, millions of families can identify with this sad reality. . . .
We are called to respond to this pastoral challenge with the four verbs I indicated in my Message for this Day in 2018: welcome, protect, promote and integrate.
To these words, I would now like to add another six pairs of verbs that deal with very practical actions and are linked together in a relationship of cause and effect.
You have to know in order to understand. Knowledge is a necessary step towards understanding others. . . If we encounter them, we will get to know more about them. And knowing their stories, we will be able to understand them.
It is necessary to be close in order to serve. . . .
Fears and prejudices – all too many prejudices – keep us distant from others and often prevent us from “becoming neighbours” to them and serving them with love. Drawing close to others often means being willing to take risks.
In order to be reconciled, we need to listen. . . . A love that reconciles and saves begins with listening. In today’s world, messages multiply but the practice of listening is being lost. Yet it is only through humble and attentive listening that we can truly be reconciled.
In order to grow, it is necessary to share. Sharing was an essential element of the first Christian community. . . . We have to learn to share in order to grow together, leaving no one behind.
We need to be involved in order to promote. . . . We must find “the courage to create spaces where everyone can recognize that they are called, and to allow new forms of hospitality, fraternity and solidarity” (Meditation in Saint Peter’s Square, 27 March 2020).
It is necessary to cooperate in order to build. . . . To preserve our common home and make it conform more and more to God’s original plan, we must commit ourselves to ensuring international cooperation, global solidarity and local commitment, leaving no one excluded.
As the Pope proposes to us at the end of his message, let us take advantage of this day to show solidarity through prayer and actions that set us firmly on the “path of encounter” with migrants and refugees.
Read the full message >>>
SEPTEMBER 6, 2020
The season is observed annually, and runs from September 1, the Day of Prayer for Creation, and through to October 4, the Feast of St. Francis, who is the patron saint of ecology in many traditions. The theme of this year’s celebration is Jubilee for the Earth.
This season is a special time for the Creator and each other. Some of us pray, some of us do hands-on projects, some of us advocate. We all protect creation. The momentum continues long after the season ends. By seeding ongoing prayer, changes in lifestyle, and advocacy, the season grows hope in our communities each year. It’s powerfully good work that’s urgently needed!
Excerpt from joint statement issued by the presidents of The Council of Bishops’ Conferences of Europe (CCEE) and the Conference of European Churches (CEC):
“This year, the COVID-19 pandemic revealed how deeply the globe is interconnected. We realised more than ever that we are not isolated from each other and that conditions related to human health and well-being are fragile. Impact of the pandemic forces us to take seriously the need for vigilance and the need for conditions of sustainable life throughout the earth. This is even more important when considering the environmental devastation and the threat of climate change.”
For more information and ways to observe this season READ MORE >>
SEPTEMBER 6, 2020
Donations to Lebanon
If you have not already done so and wish to make a donation to assist those affected by the horrendous explosion in Beirut, you can make an online donation directly to Development and Peace – Caritas Canada.
As a member of the Canadian Foodgrains Bank, Development and Peace will be participating in the matching fund launched by the Canadian Government and the Humanitarian Coalition to help the people of Lebanon.
June 28, 2020
Our Capital Campaign continues throughout 2020.
Thanks to your generosity and to an anonymous donor who made an exceptional gift, we are doing very well.
If you have not made your Contribution as of yet, why not consider doing so at this time. Whatever the amount, it will be most appreciated and meaningful in helping us reach our goal. LEARN MORE >>>
Printed Psalm Sheets
Food Bank Donation
We have a new tradition in our parish to support the hungry on a more continuous basis. Over 860,000 Canadians visit food banks every month, with over 36% of the donations feeding hungry children.
During the COVID‑19 isolation, please leave your items in a bag at the door of the rectory. Donations will be delivered to St. Willibrord’s parish food bank.
See a list of suggestions for nutritious non-perishable items HERE >>>.