236th SCOUT PANCAKE BREAKFAST
Sunday, February 26th, 2016 – after the 10 a.m. Mass in the large hall
It's an opportunity to bring parishioners together to build community
Pancake Breakfast Cost:
$6 for Adult
Youth 12 and under $4.00
Includes pancakes, sausage and juice
Coffee and tea will be available as usual.
Special fun for the kids: The scouts will put on free carnival type games for the children to have some fun. Special fun for the adults: The First Light Scout Band will singing and performing acoustical guitar. Come and join us.
All proceeds to help with the operating expenses of Holy Name Church.
4th Sunday - January 28th
As religious priests we take 3 vows. The vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. And the vow of poverty in a particular way invites us to a life of simplicity. I remember, as a seminarian in the religious community of Holy Cross, we were always told to lead a simple life. I tried to be faithful to that and I always tried to have as few possessions as possible. As life went on I realized that just having a few possessions will not guarantee that I will not have attachments and that I will be free to be at the service of the Lord.
It made me to reflect on the purpose of the vows and I came to a deeper understanding of my religious vows. Although the call for simplicity of life is important, the spirit behind these vows or the purpose of these vows is that we do not lose our focus or the purpose of our life. These vows remind us in our day today lives of our dependence on God. They remind us who is to have the prime place in our hearts and minds. I think a similar message is conveyed through the beatitudes that we heard today. The key to them all is the first “……”” All other beatitudes are ways to live out the first.
As we hear the beatitudes we might get the impression that that Jesus is glorifying human suffering and misery. We might be asking ourselves, how does one find happiness in poverty, sorrow and grief? How can a person who suffers or is persecuted find happiness? In the beatitudes it is not starvation and misery that are being blessed. What is being blessed is the reliance on God.
We like to believe that we can manage our lives, that we are self sufficient, that we can make it on our own. When we are poor in spirit we are not holding on to any illusion that my talents, possessions my time or my life are my own. So to be poor in spirit is to understand my relationship with God, to understand that I have nothing to offer God that is not first of all a gift from God.
You and I know very well that we are called to place our ultimate trust in God and not in other things or other people. Nor are we to place our ultimate trust in our own personal or professional accomplishments. That is not news to any of us.
Each of us has probably experienced times in our lives in which we have recognized our absolute dependence on God. I have experienced that as I ministered to people who are at the end of their life. For others it might be a time of struggle with school, deep disappointment in a friendship or other relationship, an experience of illness, or simply the recognition that even our best accomplishments do not fulfill us completely. At times like that, we may feel like the people in the Gospel who reach out to Christ in order to touch him and experience his presence and power.
This simple message, though, is one that we need to hear over and over again. It is just so easy for any of us to lose sight of where we are putting our ultimate trust. Amidst the pressures and temptations of life, it is so easy for us to transfer our trust to something (or someone) other than God.
But when we do make a conscious effort to orient our lives and our decisions toward God, we discover a deep joy and satisfaction that nothing else can replace. When we try to live each day with trust in Christ, asking for the strength and the grace we need for that day, other things in our lives tend to fall into their proper place. We find ourselves deeply rooted, like the tree planted next to the life-giving waters.
As we come to the Eucharist this Sunday, let us ask the Lord to remind us of the many ways in which he is faithfully present to us. Let us pray for the grace to live the Beatitudes as we experience the kingdom of God growing within us and within our community.
5th Sunday - February4th & 5th, 2017
The other day I was talking to one of my friends. It was a cold day and obviously the topic of weather came up. My friend said that he loves the winter and the cold weather does not bother him. Having born and brought up in Canada, he said he is used to the cold weather. I am not sure if one can get used to the cold weather. Winter is not my favorite season and I do not look forward to it. But I can very well survive the cold weather.
For me it is the cold weather that I do not like. And for many it could also be a dangerous time of year. There are the slippery roads, the low visibility, and the ice that forms. With those dangers come accidents, and hard falls. There are also the long, grey days that can bring people down. In that regard it is a difficult time of year for many.
With some of these dangers and drawbacks of the winter weather upon us, it is quite timely that today’s Gospel reading speaks of salt and light. They are both powerful elements that fight the problems of this season. Salt is a wonderful tool against the dangers of ice. The moment you scatter salt over the ice, it goes right to work.
Light too is a powerful tool in the battle against the gloom of winter. One of the most uplifting things in the middle of these winter months is a bright, sunny day. With the light reflecting off of the snow and the warm sun coming in through the window, one’s whole mood can take a turn for the better.
Of course, there are so many other good purposes that salt and light serve in our life. Salt is one of the most basic preservatives. We are also well aware of the great illuminating good that light provides. Among many things, its illumination provides vision, safety, and beauty. These two elements then, salt and light, provide safety, preservation, and illumination in our lives.
Now then, think about this with regard to these two powerful elements: In the Gospel, Christ tells his disciples that they are the salt of earth; they are the light of the world. Brothers and sisters, it goes the same for us as Disciples of Christ. We are the salt of the earth. We are the light of the World. We are the salt that the Lord scatters to break apart danger, to preserve those in need. We are the light that the Lord sends out to illuminate those in darkness, to give comfort to those who dwell in fear, to uplift those who are brought low.
As we reflect on what Jesus is saying, we need to ask ourselves, “Am I salt for the earth? Am I a light to people around me?”
It’s not hard to draw from today’s scriptures specific ways in which we are meant to be salt and light. Think back to what Jesus said last week in the beatitudes. More specifically, listen today to the reading from the book of the prophet Isaiah where Jesus drew his own commitment to hunger and thirst for justice.
Isaiah’s demands are as true today as they were in his day. As followers of Christ each one of us, in our own situation is called to loose the bonds of injustice, to let the oppressed go free, share our bread with the hungry, and take care of our own, especially those in need of our help.
Drawing inspiration from the Gospel reading of the day, Pope Francis said, Christians must be salt and light. “It’s curious – he continued - both salt and light are for others, not for oneself: salt does not give flavor to itself; light does not illuminate itself”.
Of course, he noted, you may be wondering how long salt and light can last without running out if we continue to give of ourselves relentlessly. That’s where the power of God comes in. The battery a Christian uses to generate light, the Pope explained, is simply prayer. Prayer is what lights up Christian life
So as we continue to celebrate this Mass, we pray for ourselves and for each other that Christ give us the strength and generosity we need to be salt and light to all those whose lives we touch.
6th Sunday - February 11 & 12th, 2017
In last Sunday’s Gospel, which is part of his Sermon on the Mount, Jesus calls his disciples, “the salt of the earth,” and “the light of the world.” In today’s segment of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus directs our attention to living the Law of our ancestors in a radically new way.
Today’s gospel passage like many passages in the gospel of Matthew is addressed to a community of Jewish Christians -- people who were Jews but has become followers of Jesus. In this Gospel passage, these Jewish Christians are reassured that Jesus hasn't abolished the Jewish law and that Jesus hasn't come to take that law away.
When Jesus says he has come to fulfill the law, what he says is that if you're going to follow me, then there's another whole set of values that go beyond those laws of the Old Testament.
This becomes very clear in an incident that is recorded later in Matthew's Gospel, where Jesus tells about a young man who comes up to him and says, "Lord, what must I do to gain eternal life?" Jesus says if you want to enter eternal life, keep the commandments." The young man says to Jesus, "I've kept all the commandments from my youth. "What more must I do to gain eternal life?
And Jesus says, "If you wish to follow me, go sell all that you possess. Give the money to the poor, and you will become the owner of a treasure in heaven. The young man, went away sad because he was a person of great wealth. So what has become very clear is that the commandments are important. But the kingdom of God, the reign of God that Jesus proclaimed has a different value system than there has been in the past.
We heard a couple of Sundays ago, the beatitudes: "Blessed are the poor. Blessed are those who are merciful. Blessed are the gentle. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for justice. Blessed are the peacemakers. Jesus says these are the values that belong to the reign of God.
Today's Gospel tells us more and more how: "You have heard that it was said, 'Hate your enemy.' I tell you love your enemy. You have heard that it was said of old, 'Thou shalt not kill. I say don't even be angry with your brother or sister.' This takes us far beyond the commandments." It's entering into our relationships of everyday life, and that we have to live according to a whole different set of values.
In order for us to live according to this new value system it's important for us, I think, to have a profound awareness of this truth about God: that God is a God who has loved our world into being, a God who has loved every one of us into existence, a God who continues to love us without limit.
Where do we learn about this love of God? We learn through the presence of Jesus in our lives and the Scriptures, but also we can learn about it from one another as each of us tries to follow the law of God's love. I think we can find our best example of this in the people we celebrate today.
The Archdiocese has designated this Sunday as “Marriage Sunday. we're celebrating people who have been married and who have nurtured married love within their lives. There is a prayer that is said at wedding. It's a beautiful prayer: "God, you have made the bond of marriage a holy mystery, a symbol of the love of God for God's people. What that prayer is saying is that married people are a symbol of the very love of God for God's people. And this love of God is unlimited, unconditional, and everlasting love.
That's what married people pledge to one another and try to live out in their married life. As they love each other, they bear witness to all of us of the truth that their love is simply a reflection of the love of God for all of us. If we are able to experience that, and try to follow in our own lives, then the reign of God will break forth even more fully in our world.
So we thank God for the married people in our midst today, and we pray that God will help them to continue to fulfill their vocation -- to be witnesses of the unending, unlimited, unconditional love of God for every one of us.
Weddings - please contact the parish office by phone 416-466-8281or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Ministry to the Sick - please contact the parish office by phone 416-466-8281 or email email@example.com
Holy Orders: please contact the Archdiocese of Toronto Vocations office by phone 416-968-0997 or email firstname.lastname@example.org