559 - October 2015
September 10th, 2015 - October 12th, 2015

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CANADA-UNITED STATES

Central Government meets with Canada-US Region

The leadership of the Canada-US Region met with the Superior General Fr. Louis LOUGEN and the Oblate Central Government on September 13-18, 2015, at the Sanctuaire Cap-de-la-Madeleine in Trois-Rivières, Quebec, Canada. The local Oblates of the Sanctuaire and the Reine des Apôtres communities welcomed the participants of the joint session with warm Oblate hospitality and fraternity. The joint-session meeting included an afternoon visit to Quebec City where the local Oblates hosted a special liturgy and reception at the Saint-Sauveur parish church and also where the joint session participants were able to visit some of the historical sites important to the religious history of Quebec and the Canada-US Region.


The theme of the gathering was: "Call to Conversion: Discerning Our Region’s Future”. The general objectives of the session were to build stronger bonds among the Oblates and to experience shared leadership; among the stated specific objectives was a desire to develop a global perspective about the future of the Canada-US Region. Overall, throughout the week there existed a positive fraternal spirit of unity and a desire to journey together as Oblates and collaborators in the Canada-US Region now and into the future.

Attending the joint session from the Region were the four Oblate provincial superiors of Assumption, Notre-Dame-du-Cap, OMI Lacombe and US provinces, and members of their councils with the provincial treasurers; altogether around 40 Oblates and 2 Oblate associates attended.

The president of CROCUS, Fr. William ANTONE, US provincial, helped to oversee the planning and execution of the meeting, which was coordinated by an ad hoc planning committee with representatives from the four provinces and chaired by Fr. Remi LEPAGE, of Notre-Dame-du-Cap province. The executive secretary of CROCUS, Ms. Danielle Brisson, helped to coordinate the logistics of the meeting and the transportation. The weeklong meeting was ably facilitated by Fr. Pierre-Olivier TREMBLAY and Ms. Lorene Ste-Marie who kept the discussions on track and lively. Providing reflection and feedback on the presentations and discussions were Fr. Marcin SERWIN and Ms. Carol Kuzmochka who served as reflectors. Well prepared and inspiring liturgical prayer at the beautiful historic sanctuary chapel provided moments of reflection and worship and helped to serve as the unifying center of the meetings.

The focus of the reports prepared by the provinces was given from a future perspective of the next 5 to 10 years. After hearing the reports of the 4 provinces, a reflection was given by Fr. General and 3 members of the Central Government covering the topics of finance, formation and mission as related to the Canada-US Region. Fr. General noted that as the Oblates in the Region looked to the future, they could see that several lived Oblate values helped to hold them together: community life, generosity and availability in the renewal of mission, a commitment to vocation and youth ministry and ongoing formation through the Oblate Triennium. Fr. General challenged the Canada-US leadership to do something together and to find at least 2 projects in which they could collaborate for the good of the Region and its future. The group entered into several sessions of discussion and discernment in which the participants honestly shared their dreams and their fears about future collaboration.


Following several sessions of discussion and reflection in both small and large group gatherings, the participants proposed four projects they would work on in common for the Region: a meeting of the young Oblates of the Region, a regional Vocation and Youth Ministry, animation and formation of superiors, and regular meetings of the provincials and their councils.

At a meeting of the CROCUS regional conference on Saturday following the joint session the provincials and vicars provincial of the Region decided on a process to begin to bring to life these projects in the months to come. In his homily at the closing liturgy of the joint session, the Superior General expressed gratitude to those who had prepared the meeting and shared his hopefulness for the future of the Oblate presence in the Canada-US Region. He closed his homily quoting the words of the Blessed Archbishop Oscar Romero prayer: "…We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs. We are prophets of a future not our own.” (Fr. Warren BROWN, General Councillor for the Canada-US Region)




Archbishop Peter Sutton, OMI: 1934-2015

On September 5, 2015, the Archbishop-emeritus of Keewatin-Le Pas, Peter SUTTON, died at the Oblate infirmary in Richelieu, Canada.

Born in 1934, he pronounced his first vows as an Oblate in 1954 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1957. In 1974, he was ordained as bishop of the Diocese of Labrador-Schefferville (Quebec), where he served until the Holy See decided that he should "go west.” He was appointed Coadjutor Archbishop of Keewatin-Le Pas (Manitoba) in January 1986; he succeeded Archbishop Paul DUMOUCHEL in November of that same year and he retired in 2006.

The first bishop of the Vicariate of Keewatin was Servant of God Bishop Ovide CHARLEBOIS, appointed in 1910 and installed in 1911.

Bishop Sutton’s remains were brought to Ottawa to the Church of the Canadian Martyrs on September 20 where there was a prayer service presided by Fr. Kenneth FORSTER, Provincial of the OMI Lacombe Province. On the next day, Bishop Douglas CROSBY of Hamilton, ON, presided at the Mass of Christian Burial.




Oblate elected President of CCCB

On September 15, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops elected Bishop Douglas CROSBY of Hamilton, Ontario, as its next President.

Born in Marathon, ON, in 1949, Bishop Crosby professed his first vows as a Missionary Oblate of Mary Immaculate in 1969 and was ordained a priest in 1975. Before being called to the episcopacy, he served in various parishes in the former St. Peter’s Province in Canada. He also served as vocation director and coordinator of provincial services before being named Provincial of his province, during which time he also served as President of the Oblate Conference of Canada. Subsequently, he became the Director of the CCCB Missions Office and English-language General Secretary of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Ordained as Bishop of the Diocese of Labrador City – Schefferville in 1998, in 2003, he also became Bishop of St. George’s, Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador in 2007. Three years later, the Diocese of Labrador City - Schefferville was formally suppressed and became part of the new Diocese. The new Diocese is called the Diocese of Corner Brook and Labrador. Bishop Crosby became Ordinary of the Diocese of Hamilton in 2010. He has been CCCB Vice-President since 2013.

 




An unusual jubilee


St. Maximilian Kolbe church in Mississauga

A priest complained to Mother Teresa that because of the amount of work he has, he has absolutely no time for adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. In her reply, she stated that the best medicine for that is to double the amount of time spent before the Blessed Sacrament.

There is a certain logic to this seemingly absurd advice. For the time spent on adoration is not just a time given to God, but it is also a time we give to ourselves. The quiet contemplation is not only conducive to prayer, but also helps us organize the countless day-to-day affairs we must deal with. The experience of God gradually dies with us when we do not have time for prayer, for adoration. The lack of adoration, the lack of prayer make us waste a lot of time and energy on alleviating our anxieties and fears. Time devoted to adoration will make our lives – including our emotional, professional, family, and community life – more orderly.

Without a doubt, our immigrant life is not without stress. For many, the cure is to entrust them in prayer to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. Residents of Mississauga and the surrounding area are fortunate in that for the past 20 years they have been able to pray at the Perpetual Adoration Chapel at St. Maximilian Kolbe church in Mississauga.


The very idea of creating such a chapel was born in 1995, and a great advocate of this project was the parish pastor, Fr. Tadeusz NOWAK. For the past 20 years, Barbara and Andrzej Chmura have been dutifully looking after scheduling regular attendants. But the chapel serves not just those who regularly come here to pray; it is visited by hundreds of passersby who entrust their daily affairs to Divine Mercy. In 2012, a statue of the Merciful Jesus was placed at the entrance of the Divine Mercy Chapel. It was donated by a parishioner, Mr. Tadeusz Dobosz, and blessed by Bishop Antoni Dlugosz from Czestochowa.

A jubilee Mass commemorating the 20th anniversary of the Perpetual Adoration Chapel was celebrated by Archbishop Wojciech Polak, Archbishop of Gniezno, Poland. In his homily, the Primate of Poland stressed the importance of maintaining a close relationship with God before the Blessed Sacrament. The Eucharist was concelebrated by numerous Oblates and guest priests. (by Wojciech Porowski in Assumption News and Views, July-August 2015)




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