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From the Pastor's Desk Jan 28/29 2022

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Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time 2023

Last night, numerous parish youth, their families and older parishioners and I went to the movies.  Mayra is to be commended for her coordination and leadership.  The documentary was outstanding and the Knights of Columbus have outdone themselves on this new production of “Mother Teresa – No Greater Love”.  It’s difficult to describe but the love of Christ that Saint Teresa taught and exemplified in serving the poorest of the poor, poured out of the film and penetrated our hearts.  At times I was moved to tears and inspired to pray for the grace to become a more saintly son in the Son of God.  But that means becoming the best version of ‘me’ (not Mother Teresa) as Fr. Paul used to quote Matthew Kelley so often.  I know there’s a difference too between a parish and an order like Mother Teresa’s Sisters of Charity, but I wonder if our parish could or should do more, or do things differently to embrace with the love of Christ the poorest among the Westshore.  And as mentioned in homilies before, let’s thank God for the work and witness of St. Vincent de Paul. 

Today, I write on the memorial of St. Francis de Sales and he really illuminates the necessary distinction of particular charisms and gifts for the good of the mission of Christ’s body, the Church.  “The practice of devotion must be adapted to the strength, the occupation and the duties of each one in particular…. Therefore, in whatever situation we happen to be, we can and we must aspire to the life of perfection.”  (Introduction to the Devout Life).   And just as individuals will have particular callings within the universal call to holiness, so will our parish of OLOR have a particular mission within the universal mission of the gospel.  Our prayer must always seek, find and enact that mission.   To baptize, bury and marry is part of the ordinary mission of the Church and this week I’ll take the funeral for Stephania Gruenheit on 25th.  God willing, Colin Spurling will enter holy matrimony with Megan Haney on Saturday the 28th with Deacon Dion presiding… congratulations to the newlyweds and families.  And speaking of baptisms, there are too many to mention in preparation for the 11 a.m. February 5th Mass, prior to my sabbatical departure February 12th.  Combined with our overflow numbers and burgeoning youthful congregation, I’m anticipating holy and joyful chaos as babies and children enter the waters of Christ’s regeneration.  If you were ever tempted to visit the Saturday Mass from the Sunday 11, this may entice you. 

My last visit to Pacheedaht First Nation for awhile will be Tuesday the 31st following the last gathering of Holy Land pilgrims on the 29th.  There’s a lot of loose ends to tie up and in the midst of it all, I’m grateful for numerous invitations to join families in their homes.  Sometimes this includes a meal and other times a home blessing but regardless I’m trying to fit all requests into the calendar and really enjoy a relationally rich time getting to know my flock a bit better.  The social freeze of the pandemic is very quickly thawing pastorally.  While Frs. Sean and Frank will serve you well at Masses and Deacon Dion will assist in coordinating ministry with Roland and Cynthia, and Mayra and Kevin will continue in their roles of service, the parish will need to scale back expectations in my absence.  While much good can be accomplished without me, and the grace of God will certainly be evident in new ways, we cannot expect the same pace of ministry without an active Pastor.  Take it easy on the leadership, and remember the dictum of St. Anselm: “In essentials unity, in non-essentials liberty, and in all things charity”.      Peace be with you.

Blessings in Him,

 Fr. Dean

MASS TIMES:

Tuesday: 9 am 

Wednesday: 9am 

Thursday: 9am 

Friday: 9am 

Saturday: 6pm

Sunday: 9am & 11 am

New office location: 2756 Claude Road Victoria BC V9B 3T6

Office hours: Mon-Fri 9:30am – 3:00pm

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