Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Feast of the Glorious Cross - New Bishop for St. Catharines - Commemoration of the Faithful Departed

O God, who willed that you Only Begotten Son should undergo the Cross to save the human race, grant, we pray, that we who have known his mystery on earth, may merit the grace of his redemption in heaven. Through our Lord.

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Pope Benedict XVI has moved swiftly to provide a new shepherd for the Diocese of Saint Catharines, naming Hamilton Auxiliary Bishop Most Reverend Gerard P. Bergie, 61, as fifth Bishop of the beautiful "Vineyard Diocese" that includes Niagara Falls.

The St. Catharines see has been vacant since the resignation of Bishop James Wingle in April, 2010.

Ad multos annos, Your Excellency!

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Many of the country parishes hold a Mass or prayer service in their cemeteries during the summer or the early fall.

Indeed, the timing of the Solemnities of All Saints and All Souls at the beginning of November does not present the best weather conditions for our climate.

For those grieving the loss of loved ones buried in our two large archdiocesan cemeteries, we schedule a Liturgy of the Word on Sunday afternoons in the early fall.

The first of this year's ceremonies took place in the Church of Notre Dame de Lourdes (Vanier) on Montreal Road on Sunday afternoon; the rainy conditions did not permit a visit to the cemetery itself for many of those who attended (cf. the photos that follow).

This coming Sunday, September 19 at 2PM, I will preside at the second ceremony at Hope Cemetery, 4660 Bank Street, South Gloucester.

Today's feast of the Triumph of the Cross point to our hope that Christ's victory will be our own in eternal life, while tomorrow's memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows underlines what it means to grieve, not like those who have no hope (1 Thessalonians 4:13), but in sorrow that trusts God to grant spiritual consolation to all who mourn (Matthew 5:4).

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