Articles from Parish Newsletter


Volume 2009, issue 18 (September 6, 2009)

     Parish Youth Day

 

Volume 2009, issue 12 (June 14, 2009)

    Plenary Indulgence Offered for Year for Priests

 

Volume 2009, issue 10  (May 17, 2009)

    NO ---Alphabet Soup

 

Volume 2009, issue 4  (February 22, 2009)

    WOMAN ABUSE CONFERENCE (cont'd)

 

Volume 2009, issue 3  (February 8, 2009)

    WOMAN ABUSE CONFERENCE (cont'd)

 

Volume 2009, issue 2  (January 25, 2009)

    WOMAN ABUSE CONFERENCE

 

Volume 2008, issue 25  (December 14, 2008)

    Youth Power

 

Volume 2008, issue 23  (November 16, 2008)

    A Sacred Mission to Serve God

 

Volume 2008, issue 13  (June 29, 2008)

    Internet

Internet                                                                                                                                      ~ Catherine

In this world of advance technology, communication is unbelievable.  It only takes a few seconds to upload information to the Internet and it could be accessed throughout the world. 

In order to take advantage of the information infrastructure, our parish has established our Website back in 2005.  All the information about our parish had been uploaded to the Internet so that they are at the fingertips of the parishioners and also as a mean of evangelization.

When parishioners enter our Website at www.sotwccc.com, there is the language choice of English or Cantonese.  The Website consists of WebPages, the information of which are more stable, such as ‘Home’, ‘Our Parish’, ‘Parish Groups’, ‘Gallery’, ‘Links’ and ‘Contact Us’.  There are also WebPages which are updated more frequently, such as the ‘Daily Bible Verses’, updated monthly, and ‘Announcement’, updated weekly.  The all-new ‘Event Calendar’ is an interactive page, so as to bring the most up-to-date information to our parishioners.

The scrolling marquee on the ‘Announcement’ page is designed to highlight the currently most important information to parishioners.  This would be used to notify parishioners of any cancellation or postponement of mass or church events due to adverse weather conditions or otherwise.

Parishioners are invited to check out our Website at www.sotwccc.com.  If you have any comments, please do not hesitate to contact the Webmaster at sotw_church@sotwccc.com. ‘Our parish is our home, we all care about it!’, let’s work together to build a more efficient WebSite, a better parish, and a more comfortable home!  God bless!

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A Sacred Mission to Serve God                                               By The Altar Server Group

Early Saturday morning on November 8, 2008, three Altar members from our parish were nominated to receive the Cardinal Carter Altar Server Award.  It is an award for Altar servers who have shown a sense of leadership, responsibility and dedication in serving God.  Chosen by our pastor, Father Lung and the Altar Committee, the award recipients from our church were Matthew Hon, Gloria Ng and Victoria Wan.  Congratulations!

This annual award ceremony was organized by Archdiocese of Toronto Serra Clubs.  Although it was the 23rd Annual Cardinal Carter Altar Server Award Ceremony held in Ontario, it was the first time that this was presented in the Greater Toronto West Region.  The mass and ceremony took place at St's Martha & Mary Parish in Mississauga and was celebrated by Bishop John Boissonneau.  There were over 40 parishes and more than 130 award recipients to receive the gold medals.  It was an honour to represent our church attending the celebration.

The purpose of the award is to encourage, acknowledge and reward Altar servers for their sacred mission in serving God.  It is truly a calling to be the shepherd of Jesus because the role of Altar server plays an important part at the mass.  Since this award is presented annually, we hope it will encourage more Altar servers to continue to love and serve God with all our heart.

As Bishop John Boissonneau said, being the followers of Jesus, we should always be generous and have more giving and sharing.  Serving God at the Altar is the best opportunity for young people to be closer to God.

 

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Youth Power                                                                            By: Simon Lau

God has a plan.  God definitely has a plan for the youth of SOTW.  I am so convinced after attending the December Eucharistic Adoration on December 5, 2008.

The Youth Ministry was responsible for the music and reading of the prayers for the December Eucharistic Adoration.  They were so well prepared.  The music was flawless.  The reading of the prayers in Cantonese, Putonghua and English was from the heart so much so that a prayerful atmosphere was achieved for the entire evening.  A couple of parishioners came to me afterwards and told me that they were moved to tears as the prayers were read.  They were brought to the deep mood of praying.  This is wonderful.  This is what Eucharistic Adoration is all about and our youth led the congregation to achieve this!  Well done youth!

As the prayers were read, I prayed earnestly to God that our youth could be more involved in the evangelization and spiritual promotion activities of our Parish.  All of a sudden, I realized that our youth have indeed been involved.  We have youth participation in the five choirs for the five Masses, in the Youth Faith Forum choir, in the St. Luke Youth Choir, in the Children’s Choir, in the St. Cecilia Youth Orchestra, in the Youth Faith Forum, in the 1st Mississauga Scout Group, in the Table Tennis Club, in the Altar Servers, in the Liturgy Group as lectors for the English Mass, in the Promotion of Faith Group as Sunday School Assistants and in the Parish Council. 

Yes, our youth are very involved in our Parish.  They are the future leaders of our Parish.  The “Youth Power” is at work.  I am confident that they will be more and more involved in the evangelization and spiritual promotion activities of our Parish.  God will look after the youth of SOTW.  The Holy Spirit will work with them and guide them along.  Our Parish will flourish with the keen participation of our youth.

Lately I have been watching a lot of cartoons for toddlers.  In a popular cartoon series, “Bob the Builder”, Bob has five animated trucks that help him to get his job done.  Every time they set out to complete a job, they chatter aloud, “Can we do it?”  And they all respond loudly with great emotion, “Yes we can!”  I pray that God will send the Holy Spirit upon the youth of SOTW and make them leaders in our Parish to continue the good work we are doing. 

“Can we do it?”  Of course! “Yes, we can!”

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ARCHBISHOP THOMAS COLLINS

OPENING REMARKS

WOMAN ABUSE CONFERENCE

OCTOBER 18, 2008

It is indeed a very great honour to be with you to reflect on the issue of the abuse of women, particularly within our community, at the same time remembering that this issue goes through whole society. While there are different forms of abuse and many people being abused, today we reflect on violence against women and the terrible evil that [this] is in our whole society.  

I would like to begin as we begin all of our prayers with the sign of the cross. In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen. That prayer is so common in our lives that we Catholics look upon it as an indication that we are going to start praying in a while, whereas, in fact, it is a profound prayer, a prayer in itself which we need to reflect upon in the light of our faith: the love of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, the one God joined in relationship of personal love. This is the heart and centre of all that we live for and all that we are. I will reflect on the implications of what it means not just to pray in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, but also to live in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

One implication of a life lived in the name of the Blessed Trinity is that we recognize that each one of us is a precious child of God. Each person must be treated with reverence, because we are children of God, made in the image of God. We are not things only, we are persons. We do not relate to another as a “what”, but as a “who”. And if that is what we do, then the whole of our society will be all the much better for that.

The foundation of the social teachings of the Catholic Church is that persons must not be treated as things, disposable, to be used or abused, for personal gain or anything else. Persons must never be treated as objects or things to be dismissed, or to be treated with contempt or disdain, or to be acted against with violence. Persons are precious created in the image likeness of God. They must always be treated with reverence living in relationships of generous love, in the name of the Blessed Trinity.

That is the vision that inspires us in all our relationships, whether in our wider society, where we cannot dismiss people as objects, as things to be used, but most especially and profoundly in the intimate and immediate relationship of our families. We are called to treat each person as a “who” not a “what”; not someone to be dominated or used as an object for personal gratification or control, but as a person to be treated with love and reverence.

When that does not happen, when people are treated as things in any way, then it is evil. When violence is used, when the possession of brute force is used as an excuse or as a vehicle for dominating or hurting another person, as happens too often so sadly, then that is an evil. It cannot be excused: it is evil. It is treating a child of God, a person of dignity who should be treated with reverence, as an object on whom one can vent a desire for control and domination or anger or anything else.

This can be shown in many different ways, but today in particular, I call to mind the utter evil, which is so real in our society, in which women are treated as objects to be abused. Often, this happens out of the sight of the world, but those who experience it, experience enormous grief and pain. There is no justification, no excuse, for violence or anything that treats any person as an object and not as someone to be treated with reverence. It is a rejection of the fundamental law of love which is found in the message of Jesus and in the very fundamental gift of creation. Each person deserves reverence and love. To treat another person as a thing is evil. Simple and clear evil.   (to be continued)

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ARCHBISHOP THOMAS COLLINS

OPENING REMARKS

WOMAN ABUSE CONFERENCE

OCTOBER 18, 2008

(Continued from last issue)

And so I want to express too in a very real way my appreciation for those who day by day seek to reach out, to help, to be an ear to listen and a heart to love, to people who are experiencing this in their lives. To be attentive is essential. I think we all need to appreciate in our hearts those who do this day by day and are aware very much of this reality.

All of our social teaching of Catholic Church is based upon this: a vision of life lived in imitation of the Blessed Trinity, in the imitation of Christ. Domestic violence is too often an unseen social evil that causes immeasurable grief. Our goal is to create broader societies and the most intimate society of family itself where each person can grow and flourish as God intends in relationships of generous love and respect can grow flourish as God intends in relationships of generous love and respect reflecting the love of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. And when we fall short of that, in our broader, wider community or personally, then we need to respond with a repentant heart and with the wisdom that comes with natural reason and common sense and from the supernatural vision of faith. That is what we are called to do.

As we look forward to what is a path ahead, I call to mind the three words at the heart of the Catholic Worker Moment: See, Judge, Act.

The fist step is to see; to be attentive; to see and notice those things around us that are not as they should be. We have to see, to recognize what is there. This is true when we reflect on this particular serious and profound issue. The first step is to see.

The second step is to judge, but not in the sense of being judgmental. Judge in the sense of understand, assess, have some standard for saying what do we do. It is not enough to know what’s happening, the wrongs that are there. We have to say, “What is the context that allows us to understand this and see a path forward.” To judge in the light of human reason, to judge in the standard of the gospel that help us to navigate through this would and respond rightly to the things that we see before us.

And finally, to act, to do something. It is not enough to see what is there, to understand it more fully by judging it rightly, and that move on. We are called to act. Not necessarily to act dramatically, but to act effectively, carefully, thoughtfully.   (to be continued)

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ARCHBISHOP THOMAS COLLINS

OPENING REMARKS

WOMAN ABUSE CONFERENCE

OCTOBER 18, 2008

(Continued from last issue)

As we reflect on domestic violence and violence against women, because it often occurs out of sight of the world, it can be assumed that it does not exist or that it is a minor reality. So, the first step of seeing is to realize the extent of what is truly there. The blindness must change. We must see what is there.

Statistics can help; they give us a sense to some degree. Personal witness can help us to see. This is more powerful that statistics, but the two of them are needed. Personal witness tells us of an immediate situation. Unless we know what is truly there and measure it rightly, then we cannot go further.

The second step is to judge. We use our human reason to judge and to recognize that each person must be treated with dignity. We use reason and we use divine revelation to help us to judge and set the standard. We look at the teachings of our Lord Jesus, we look at the parables, we look at the question He asked, “Who is my neighbour?” And we recognize that it is not right to pass by on the other side when there is someone suffering, experiencing violence nearby, unnoticed.

We look at the example of Jesus to give us a standard to judge by. We find this as well in the rest of scripture. St, Paul speaks to us also of reverence and love. We think of the relationship of men and women in the Acts of the Apostles and in the life of Paul. We think of Pricilla and Aquilla, the husband and wife team who love together the community and were examples of that love which is the model of us all.

Sometimes phrases from St. Paul can be taken out of context. Just like a little piece here, a little piece there of scripture, and they are distorted and twisted. [People hear] the first part where St. Paul speaks of the relationship of a wife to a husband, but they forget the second part where he speaks of the relationship of a husband to a wife. When somebody takes a little piece of scripture to justify violence that is just wrong: to use the Word of God in a way that is false. So, we need to look to the sacred scriptures, to the full reality there, to the message of love which is found there, and use that to help us to judge, to understand.

After that, we need to act. For it is not enough to understand the situation or to know where we should go, that seeing and the judging, we have to ask, “What do we do next?” Here are some suggestions that I would offer.

The first is to make people aware of the reality of this problem. I think it’s important that priests preach on this issue: that this is mentioned from the pulpit. I think that we need to speak about this so that people will not feel that they are not heard or not noticed, and that what is in their heart does not resonate beyond them, that they are alone. If this is spoken publicly, it helps people put it into the context of the message of the Gospel.

Secondly, I think a reality that could be helpful is to develop within our parishes and within our whole diocese and support those who are assisting with this terrible evil. To help people recognize signs of abuse, to help those know where to call, how to take the next step. Making information more and more available is a thing that I think is important.    (to be continued)

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Volume 2009, issue 10  (May 17, 2009)

NO ---Alphabet Soup                                                      by Sucan McCarthy Peabody

 “No” is a shaking of our head, a thumbs down, a scowl, a negative word, or an angry tone of voice. The word “no” can have positive or negative effects, whether on the personal or social level. On the one hand, a “no” together with our refusal to believe something we cannot see can rock someone’s world and bring dreams crashing to the ground. With our “no,” we may refuse love to someone who needs us desperately. With our “no,” we may burden shoulders and spirits and deflate balloons. With our “no,” we may give voice to anger and teach our children to express anger destructively. We can burn piles of books, destroy buildings with a shake or our head or with a simple “no.” We have so much power!

             On the other hand, used properly, “no” can be one of the most valuable words in the English language. A simple “no” to a teenager might move him or her to resist drugs, cheating, lying, or other hurtful behaviour. While describing the wording of the Ten Commandments as they have been originally given to the people, Thomas Cahill (The Gifts of the Jews) suggests they were one negative word each: “a verb in the imperative form preceded by a negative prefix of one syllable….utterly primitive, basic injunctions on the order of ‘No-kill, No-steal, No-lie.’ These Ten Words [word be] easily memorized by even the simplest nomad.” The wording is basic as the people were basic, very simple and very clear.

             The word “no” sets boundaries that can save lives and protect those who can’t take care of themselves. We call need boundaries. We need to say “no” when we mean “I don’t want to do that; it’s not good for you or for me.”

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Volume 2009, issue 12 (June 14, 2009)

Plenary Indulgence Offered for Year for Priests

Jubilee Marks 150 Years Since Death of Curé de Ars

VATICAN CITY, MAY 12, 2009 (Zenit.org).- The Vatican is offering a plenary indulgence for all faithful on the occasion of the Year for Priests, which is set to begin June 19 and last one year.

The decree was made public today and signed by Cardinal James Francis Stafford and Bishop Gianfranco Girotti, respectively penitentiary major and regent of the Apostolic Penitentiary.

The Year for Priests marks the 150th anniversary of the death of St. Jean Marie Vianney, also knows as the Curé de Ars.

The decree noted that Benedict XVI will preside at the opening liturgy June 19, the solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, "a day of priestly sanctification." He will celebrate vespers before the relics of the saint, brought to Rome for the occasion by the bishop of the French Diocese of Belley-Ars.

The Year will end in St. Peter's Square, in the presence of priests from all over the world "who will renew their faithfulness to Christ and their bonds of fraternity."

For priests, the plenary indulgence can be gained by praying lauds or vespers before the Blessed Sacrament exposed to public adoration or in the tabernacle. They must also "offer themselves with a ready and generous heart for the celebration of the sacraments, especially the sacrament of penance."

The plenary indulgence, which under current norms must be accompanied by sacramental confession, the Eucharist and praying for the intentions of the Pope, can also by applied to deceased priests.

Priests are granted a partial indulgence, also applicable to deceased priests, every time they "devotedly recite the prayers duly approved to lead a saintly life and to carry out the duties entrusted to them."
 
For the faithful, a plenary indulgence can be obtained on the opening and closing days of the Year for Priests, on the 150th anniversary of the death of St. Jean-Marie Vianney, on the first Thursday of the month, or on any other day established by the ordinaries of particular places for the good of the faithful.

To obtain the indulgence the faithful must attend Mass in an oratory or Church and offer prayers to "Jesus Christ, supreme and eternal Priest, for the priests of the Church, or perform any good work to sanctify and mould them to his heart."

The conditions for the faithful for earning a plenary indulgence are to have gone to confession and prayed for the intentions of the Pope.

The elderly, the sick, and all those who for any legitimate reason are unable to leave their homes may obtain the plenary indulgence if, with the intention of observing the usual three conditions as soon as they can, "on the days concerned, they pray for the sanctification of priests and offer their sickness and suffering to God through Mary, Queen of the Apostles."
 
A partial indulgence is offered to the faithful when they repeat five times the Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be, or any other duly approved prayer "in honor of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, to ask that priests maintain purity and sanctity of life."

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Parish Youth Day                          

On Saturday, August 29th, 2009, a group of youths gathered at the church's basement for a day full of fun activities and interesting discussions. The theme of the Parish Youth Day was "How to achieve a happy life?". I am sure many people want to know and wonder how we can obtain a happy and successful life. Two of the main points that Fr.John - our speaker, had presented to us was: to have a goal in life and to have good temper. These two things are very important in our lives, if we do not have these two factors, we can ultimately follow the wrong path in life, such as, doing drugs, hurting ourselves physically and mentally, creating family problems, having troubles socializing, etc. If we follow these two simple guidelines - have a goal and have good temper, we can easily obtain a happy and successful life. After attending the Parish Youth Day, many of us have gained more knowledge from Fr.John about how to achieve a happy life. The Parish Youth Day was great, there were some awesome activities and a few deep discussions. It is a day for youths to learn, meet new people and have fun at the same time! And most importantly, this event was FREE, so I am sure there are many youths out there that are looking forward to another Parish Youth Day! :)

                                                                                             ---Gloria Ng

 

On August 29, I had the opportunity of attending the youth day at the church hall. At first, I had to admit that I had no idea with what I was about to take part in. I had thought of this day as another boring church liturgy. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the events that Father and the other adults had planned for us. The day consisted of food and several games that were done to help the youth interact with one another. Everyone had a great time as we got to learn more about ourselves and meet new friends. Later on, we were also treated to a presentation from Father about how to truly live a happy life. He gave us guidance about making the right choices and the things we must avoid to live a fulfilling life. I would say that this year’s youth day was definitely worth attending and I hope to see more teens come out next year. God Bless.      

                                                                        --- Gary Tong

 

One day, I received an e-mail inviting me to go to a Youth Day event that was being held at our church. It claimed that it would be a great way to spend my weekend. Curious to find out what this was, I went to church that Saturday and to my delight, there were others waiting to get started when I arrived.

To begin the event, we watched a video on the life of the pope, and talked about what we learned. Then, we listened to Father John speak about achieving a happy life by having a good temper and setting goals. We then listened to people talk about their experiences like travelling to a pilgrimage in Medjugorje. To end the event, we played a game that taught us about the values in our lives.

Throughout the day, I learned a lot about setting and accomplishing goals, achieving a “happy life”, and our religion. It was truly an amazing day. I got to meet many new people and we talk about our experiences. My experience at the Youth Day motivates me to work harder to reach my personal goals and to be a better individual. I hope, next Youth Day, more people will join and share their thoughts with us and the rest of the youths in our church community.

                                                                  - Adrienne Wong

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