Mass readings, reflections and activities for the fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time
Mass Readings | Believing God Who Protects. Proclaiming God’s Word can be costly. For the grueling work of prophet Jeremiah, God declares he will not be alone. In proclaiming Good News in his home town, Jesus is faced with reproach and the threat of being thrown over the cliff. Proclaiming Good News is the task of each of us because of Baptism into Christ. So, how do we do it? As faithful, hopeful, loving Christians.
What words of faith will I share with others this week?
What is part of the great hope I have in believing in Christ?
Because God keeps me safe in a protecting embrace, how can I love? Whom will I love – even those who are not “one of us”? (Source: Diocese of Springfield)
Resources for children:
Gospel Reflection: Sometimes we can be like the people of Nazareth; we don't want to trust Jesus' message because we find his words challenging. We don't want to do what he says. But we can trust his words to us and can rely on his guidance in our lives.(Loyola Press)
Kid's challenge this week: Write/Draw something extraordinary that they or another person has done. Or write the qualities that they think make people special such as kindness, generosity, courage or faith. (CAFOD)
In this week’s show with GodSquad Canada "A dram with friends" Sean welcomes Fr. Jonathan Gibson into the virtual pub. Listen as Sean and Fr. Jonathan discuss their experiences of the Bible in a Year with Fr. Mike Schmitz (BiaY), the challenges of living in our world, and the impact that the BiaY has had on them. Watch show
Joy Gregory, a writer, cradle Catholic, and long-time parishioner of St. Peter’s, shares her thoughts on why the Synod on Synodality process matters—and how Catholics in the Diocese of Calgary can (and should) participate. Read now
Lectio divina or “sacred reading” is an ancient method of praying with sacred texts that dates to the fourth century. The basic idea is to spend time listening deeply and intently to what God might have to say to you through the text—almost as if the sacred text were a much-cherished love letter from God. Download this handy "Lectio Divina for Families" guide, and learn how you can walk even young children through the basic movements of lectio divina.
Catholics, or Christians in general, can sometimes forget that we are both body and soul as human beings. Learn from Christopher West on the unity of the body and soul to understand how we should understand and see ourselves according to the teachings of the Church. Read more
The Coldest Night of the Year (Feb. 26) is a winterrific family-friendly walk to raise money for local charities serving people experiencing hurt, hunger and homelessness.
Virtual CNOY Day This is your own self-organized walk on February 26 (or whatever day in February you decide to walk). Gather with your covid-safe bubble (or on your own) and figure out a safe 2-5 km route.
The CNOY Toque Walkers who raise $150+ (adults 18 and over) or $75 (children/youth 17 and under) will receive a CNOY toque as a thank you! Just so you know, it's always a different toque style each year and they're so collectible!
Many of Feed the Hungry's guests come to our Sunday's dinner site after walking through harsh weather conditions. By participating in Coldest Night of the Year, we invite you to not only help us raise funds to operate our program, but also to experience a small taste of what it means to experience homelessness during Calgary's often brutally cold winter nights. Let's team up, walk and fundraise! It's cold out there... but there's no place like home.
Since the pandemic began, front-line workers, first responders, personal support workers, and many others have put their lives on the line to support people in their care. Essential workers and businesses held their course to ensure that the needs of their community endured the effects of lockdown restrictions.
The National Centenary Committee encourages members to print and use a CWL Gratitude Card (above) to extend gratitude to all those who have nobly helped their community in any way. Recipients could include individuals, health care facilities, senior care centres, nursing homes, businesses, etc. Personal delivery of the cards would be especially meaningful.
inside of card
Instructions Calgary Diocesan Council formatted the gratitude card as a stand-up tent card, 8.5” wide x 5.5” high. The cards print beautifully on white 65-lb cardstock – one card per page. Print them double-sided and flip the paper on the "short" edge. Fold the cards in half horizontally, so that the image is on the bottom front and the text is on the inside bottom.
Personalize your cards by writing the recipient’s name on the line at the top of the inside; and the name of your parish council (and location) at the bottom. e.g. St. Joseph CWL – Magrath.
To print cards for your council, download them here.
After careful assessment of the uncertainty and potential health risks surrounding international travel amid the recent spread of the Omicron variant, the Canadian Bishops, Assembly of First Nations, Métis National Council, and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami have jointly decided to reschedule a delegation to the Vatican in December 2021 to the earliest opportunity in 2022.
Residential school survivors, Indigenous elders , knowledge keepers and youth to meet with Pope Francis
The Catholic Bishops of Canada are pleased to announce that 25-30 First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Elders, knowledge keepers, residential school survivors, and youth will meet with Pope Francis at the Vatican from December 17-20, 2021, accompanied by a small group of Canadian Bishops.
The delegation has been planned through ongoing dialogue with the Assembly of First Nations, the Métis National Council, the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, and other Indigenous leaders. While specific travel plans and itineraries are being coordinated with the delegates directly, representatives from the Vatican have confirmed that the Holy Father will participate in private meetings with First Nations, Inuit, and Métis delegates respectively to hear their personal stories of the lasting legacy of residential schools. Delegates will also have the opportunity to speak with the Holy Father about their hopes and expectations for his eventual pilgrimage to Canada.
The Catholic Bishops of Canada are grateful that Pope Francis has accepted their invitation to visit Canada on a pilgrimage of healing and reconciliation. The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops has invited the Holy Father to make an apostolic journey to Canada, also in the context of the long-standing pastoral process of reconciliation with indigenous peoples. His Holiness has indicated his willingness to visit the country on a date to be settled in due course. The Holy Father’s full statement on the matter can be found here.
In anticipation of this visit, the planned delegation of Indigenous survivors, Elders, knowledge keepers and youth will travel to the Holy See, where they will have the opportunity to speak to Pope Francis about the timing, focus, and themes in preparation for his future pilgrimage to Canada.
During the past months we have been given the blessing of time to contemplate what is important in our lives and in our society. Many of us are prioritizing the importance of a health care system that cultivates a culture of care and love for people at all life stages..
This is an opportune time to use our letter-writing energy to urge our government to seriously hear our concerns about two issues: (1) the providing of palliative care for all Canadians who choose this option near the end of their lives; and (2) the suggested removal of safeguards to Bill C-7.
We encourage everyone to contact government leaders on the following two concerns.
Palliative Care: In 2017 the Federal Government put forward the Framework on Palliative Care in Canada. The government promised to invest $3 billion into national home care services including palliative care. Has funding been made? How can Canadians make informed decisions about their end of life treatment when quality palliative care is readily available to only 15% of Canadians (2018 Health Canada Report)? On May 17, 2020 Zi-Ann Lum published “Will the Pandemic Finally Make Us Talk About Palliative Care?” in the Huffington Post, Canadian Edition. I encourage you to read it if you want more information.
Bill C-7, Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD): There are concerns about removing some of the safeguards placed in the existing legislation. First, the government is proposing to remove the mandatory 10 day waiting period before a patient can receive medically assisted death stating that the waiting period may unnecessarily prolong suffering. Second, the government is proposing to remove the need for two witnesses. Both safeguards exist so that patients can make an informed decision about their end of life care without pressure and with appropriate verification. Presently the Bill has undergone two readings. There is still time to write letters and email the government to express our concerns about the removal of these safeguards.
Sample letters to the Prime Minister, Justice Minister, Health Minister and Member of Parliament are posted under Legislation Tips and Tools. Adjust them as you wish. See the Forms and Resources page for our letter writing guide and contact information for MPs and MLAs.
Through faith, we have a moral compass that guides our actions daily to help and protect the vulnerable in our society. May our Lady of Good Counsel guide you as you work for God and Canada.
During this pandemic, our faith community needs us even more. Please remember to keep supporting your parish with weekly or recurring donations. If offering envelopes are not feasible at this time, you can support the parish through online giving, either on your parish's website or on the Diocese of Calgary website.
The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops released a Safe Environment Policy to protect children and everyone from sexual abuse in the church: Protecting Minors from Sexual Abuse: A Call to the Catholic Faithful in Canada for Healing, Reconciliation, and Transformation. Read the document here.
Break the cycle of silence. You can choose to talk about it and report abuse. The Diocese of Calgary has launched a Safe Environment web page. Talk to someone you trust or call the toll-free number at 1-833-547-8360.
There are many scams going around masquerading as your clergy (priests, deacons or lately, the bishop).
Please exercise caution when responding to email messages. If you receive unusual emails, check the sender's email address to see whether it is the person’s genuine address. Even if the sender's address looks correct, always verify suspicious emails by phoning the sender. There have been many similar scams reported by several parishes in our diocese and across Canada.
Note that these scams do not stop at emails. Those in social media should stay vigilant when responding to friend requests or to other compelling posts requiring a response. There are many fake Twitter, Facebook and other social media accounts trying to impersonate people you know and our church leaders. Some scammers may take the time to build a relationship with you to gain your trust, before trying to extort money or other things like gift cards.
Please exercise vigilance when you are being charitable. Use the channels you are most familiar with and avoid becoming victims of a scam. For samples of scam emails see Diocese of Calgary