All kinds of good things are happening.
Firstly, the pilgrimage to Our Lady of Namacpacan is upon us. This Friday, June 29th, the statue of Our Lady of Namacpacan will arrive. We will celebrate this opening of our summer of pilgrimage to Her with a mass of welcome at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, presided by His Grace, our archbishop, Michael Miller, with ten priests or so concelebrating. This eucharist will be followed by a reception in the church basement. The programme of the summer will be available on leaflets, and on the parish website. Since we will be a church of pilgrimage for two months, we will extend our opening hours for the church as much as we can. It will be open all day Saturday and Sunday, and weeknights from 6:00 until 9:00 p.m. The pilgrimage will conclude with a thanksgiving mass at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday August 25 and a banquet in the evening on the same day. I lift this venture up to the Holy Spirit, that it might be a grace-filled summer for a multitude of people.
Mr. Barry Desmond is stepping down, after several years of very devoted, very generous service as coordinator of our Hands of Veronica ministry group. This ministry has grown under his leadership. We provide a monthly service of either eucharist or anointing of the sick with communion in no fewer than six residences, not counting the L’Arche community. We are also, slowly but surely, trying to establish a ministry of friendship with people – Catholic or not – who are most alone in our residences. On behalf of the entire parish, I want to thank Barry for the wonderful work he has done. I also want to thank all the members of this ministry for their fidelity to this labour of love. And I want to thank those who have accepted to assume, together, a part of the coordinating work assumed by Barry alone in the past years. Finally, I want to thank Fr. Gabriel for accepting to assume the position of over-all coordinator for Hands of Veronica.
Finally, last Sunday’s appeal for Vanspec has been an unhoped-for success. No fewer than ten children have been signed up for one-on-one catecheses, and no fewer than eighteen people have signed up as catechists! This unexpected success represents a challenge for us, but it is a very, very good problem! Thanks be to God for all the generosity that constantly manifests itself in St. Mary’s Parish.
So as you can see, much is happening, and all is well in St. Mary’s Parish. May God continue to grace us with his generous Providence.