Sunday Bulletin 9/20/20
From the Desk of the Rector
Pending Schedule Changes. Reviewing our weekend Mass schedule and other matters the following changes will occur on the dates given. Weekend Masses. Beginning the weekend of October 17/ 18 the schedule will be as follows: Saturday at 5:00 p.m. and Sunday at 8:30 am, 10:30 am and 12:30 pm Weekday Mass will be celebrated on Wednesdays at noon beginning on September 30th. Sacrament of Reconciliation (Confessions) General Absolution will be offered following each weekend Mass on Sept. 26/27, Oct. 3/4 and Oct. 10/11. As well General Absolution will be offered following Wednesday noon Mass on September 30, Oct. 7, and Oct. 14. After Oct 14, individual Confession will be available following the noon Mass each Wednesday until 1:30 p.m. Of course, the Sacrament of Reconciliation is always available by appointment. Information regarding General Absolution is available online. If you require a printed copy, please contact the parish office.
Education and Reflection. I recently read a message of Dr. Tim Rutledge, Unity Health Toronto’s President and CEO. It was sent to the Unity Health community comprised of St. Michael’s Hospital, St. Joseph’s Hospital and Providence Healthcare. It concerned the matter of racism in our society. In part, he said, “Inclusivity, community and compassion are three of our core values at Unity Health. Education is also a key part of our mission – and part of standing up against racism is educating ourselves and checking our own implicit biases. I know we can – and must – do better. We must listen and learn from those most affected and strive to be allies. It is up to all of us to do the hard work of undoing racism and effecting change.” Adding to this, John Lewis gives us all reason to think, be educated, pray and act. “I believe race is too heavy a burden to carry into the 21st century. It's time to lay it down. We all came here in different ships, but now we're all in the same boat.” Are we generous? Today’s Gospel speaks of being generous. Everyone of us has needs as we come before God. It may be forgiveness or healing. These uncertain days may see us needing courage and hope. The workers in the gospel wanted to be chosen. They were recognized and given work. God is generous to us beyond our expectations and like the call of the Gospel we are invited to be grateful and as generous to others in need. Am I always aware of God’s generosity to me? What gifts do I have that I didn’t earn? Who needs me to be generous to them? Fr. Jim Mockler
The Goodness and Generosity of God
“For several months, as a direct result of our troubled times, I have been moved to pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy which has an option for a closing prayer that includes this phrase “…increase Your mercy in us, that in difficult moments we might not despair or become despondent, but with great confidence submit ourselves to Your holy will…” There are elements in today’s reading that emphasize the call to submit ourselves to God. For example, in the first reading Isaiah exhorts us to seek the Lord wherever he may be found even in the midst of turmoil, the pandemic, civil unrest and political divide. St. Ignatius encourages us to see God in all things, in all people, yet our hardheadedness and stubbornness often moves us into despair. What we cannot see and understand fully—even control—leads us to doubt our faith and become despondent. Isaiah notes that God’s ways are “as high as the heavens are above the earth” emphasizing that God’s ways and thoughts are far above ours. The Gospel reading certainly reinforces the idea that God’s ways may be in conflict with our ways of thinking. The idea of “fairness” is front and center in most readings of the story of the landowner and the vineyard laborers. With our limited human eyes and flawed logic, it seems wasn’t fair for the same wage to be paid to workers who worked only an hour compared to those that worked all day. A critical message of this parable is that we are all equal recipients of God's gifts. The reality is that we often manifest a weakness in our personal faith journey and that we are often covetous and jealous when God's gifts of forgiveness and life are given to others in equal measure. Jesus’ parable highlights the goodness and generosity of God. As the ultimate “landowner,” God will use what has always belonged to the Creator for the good of all even if we humans fail to view the world through His eyes. The parable illustrates our own tendency to covet of what others receive from God. Or in another way, we may ask “why am I suffering so much when others have it easier”? The owner of the vineyard asks those who have worked longest and (presumably) hardest for him, "Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?" God's grace, mercy, and forgiveness are God's to give away as He sees fit. The recompense of reward will be given to the believers, but not according to the time of their conversion but indeed according to just their faith. This parable describes the state of the church in the world, and explains that the last shall be first, and the first last—regardless of, or despite the wisdom of man. If God gives grace to others or relief from pain and challenge, it is kindness to them, and no injustice to us. We must have faith that our portion of gifts or challenges are in tune with what God asks of us in our lives as we serve His kingdom. Life can be unfair, and life can be hard. In faith Praise the Lord!” Daily Reflection of Creighton University’s Online Ministries, 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sept. 20, 2020 https://onlineministries.creighton.edu/CollaborativeMinistry/092020.html
Missions Committee Update
In December 2018, the Missions Committee allocated some of the funds collected through the annual Missions collections to support Chalice, an organisation that works in impoverished communities around the world to help struggling families overcome the cycle of poverty. This week we received a letter of thanks from Dave MacKinnon, Donor Relations with Chalice, and an update on the project we helped to support. “Back in December of 2018 you made a very generous donation of $2,000 directed in support of the School Farming and Feeding Program in Africa (eRoots II). This major program placed emphasis on the use of locally available resources such as land and social capital to create resilient and sustainable food systems. The design incorporated long term projects that would allow schools to sustainably produce food even after the project came to an end; for instance, by planting of fruit trees that would provide fruits to children for many years to come; by setting up vegetable gardens that the schools would continue to maintain; by equipping the schools with irrigation equipment and improvement of food storage facilities. The school farm program was by far one of the most successful development designs to ensure that school feeding would continue to run efficiently in most schools. Attached a final report on this Phase II. I hope that you will take the time to look through this report (includes many photos) so that you can appreciate the impact that your generosity has had on these children and their families for now and into the future. They are grateful for your support. On behalf of Chalice, thank you for all your very generous and ongoing support for this project and all the work that we do to provide a hand-up to these people in need.
St. Vincent de Paul Update During the months of June, July and August, our parish Society of St. Vincent de Paul made 149 calls to the poor among us, helping 168 people and distributing $6780 in food gift cards plus vouchers for furniture. As several neighbouring parishes have not been able to continue to support their own St. Vincent de Paul chapter during the pandemic, we have on occasion made calls outside of St. Peter's parish boundaries. The generous support we have received in doing this work is quite remarkable. The donations people have made are what makes this work possible. In addition, we know that your prayers have been a crucial help to us. If you would like to assist us in this work, we would be delighted. Please call 519-434-5235 for detailed information. The 106th World Day of Migrants and Refugees: Sunday, September 27 With the title “Like Jesus Christ, forced to flee”, Pope Francis urges us this year to discover the reality of internally displaced people more deeply. Every month, a new video of Pope Francis and other multimedia materials delve into the sub-themes present in the message of the Holy Father: “To know in order to understand”, “To be close in order serve”, “To listen in order to be reconciled”, and “To share in order to grow”. These videos offer the real-life testimony of internally displaced persons and their struggles as they navigate the world. Click here for these inspirational messages and words of hope and encouragement from Pope Francis. 40 Days for Life 40 Days for Life is a peaceful prayer and fasting vigil and community outreach for an end to abortion. In London, we pray on the corner of Wellington and Commissioners in front of Victoria Hospital where they perform abortions. This year the campaign runs from Sept 23 to Nov 1 (including Sundays). St Peter’s Cathedral has been asked to cover one day, Fri Oct 16, from 7 am – 7 pm. Each person is asked to commit to one hour. This year, you are asked to bring your own sign. Signs will be available at the kick-off on Sept 22 (8-9 pm at Victoria Hospital), at the Life Chain (Oct 4) and Saturday mornings at the corner. To book your vigil time or for more information visit www.40daysforlife.com/london/ or call Judy: 519-641-4907. Come Pray With Us Join us each Sunday for our Sunday Prayer Service online. The service invites us into the Sunday scriptures and celebrates a time of prayer, music, and reflection led by members of our Pastoral Team. The service will be available at the following link each Sunday morning.