Saturday, 9 January 2021
Thursday, 17 December 2020
ADVENT LESSONS AND CAROLS
SOLEMN BENEDICTION OF
THE BLESSED SACRAMENT
FRIDAY, DEC. 18
Attend virtually by going to
CATHOLIC PARISH OF
ST. THOMAS MORE
Sunday, 6 December 2020
St. Bernard of Clairvaux outlined what he called the three comings of Christ:
1. The incarnation of Jesus as a human person – fully visible to all.
2. The intermediate coming – an invisible manifestation of God, the Holy Spirit, in the interior lives of those who are baptized and empowered by God to declare the Good News of salvation to all people.
3. The final coming of Christ will also be visible “and all flesh shall see the salvation of our God.”
According to Isaiah, the time of exile— the separation of mankind from God due to sin—is about to end. This is the good news of the first coming of Christ proclaimed by St. John the Baptist in today’s liturgy.
Isaiah in today’s First Reading promises Israel’s release and return from captivity and exile. But as today’s Gospel shows, Israel’s historic deliverance was meant to herald an even greater saving act by God—the coming of Jesus to set Israel and all nations free from bondage to sin, to gather them up and carry them back to God.
God sent an angel before Israel to lead them in their exodus towards the promised land (Ex. 23:20). And God promised to send a messenger of the covenant, Elijah, to purify the people and turn their hearts to the Father before the day of the Lord (Malachi 3:1, 23–24).
St. John the Baptist quotes Isaiah’s prophecy, to show that all of Israel’s history looks forward to the revelation of Jesus. In Jesus, God has filled in the valleythat divided the sinful from Himself.
God has done all this not for humanity in the abstract but for each of us as St. Bernard emphasizes. The long history of salvation leads us to this Eucharist, in which God again comes: our salvation is near.
Each of us must hear in today’s readings a personal call. Here is God, Isaiah says, who has been patient with you as St. Peter says in the Epistle.
Like Jerusalem’s inhabitants we have to go out to God, repenting our sins, all the self-indulgence that can make our lives a spiritual desert. We must allow God’s grace to straighten our lives so everything leads us directly to Christ in our hearts and in our relationships.
Today, we hear the Gospel and commit ourselves to lives of devotion to proclaim the Good News of Christ’s coming.
Isaiah 40:1–5, 9–11
2 Peter 3:8–14
Monday, 16 November 2020
It has been said: Remembrance Day informs today of what we hope tomorrow will look like.
Remembrance Sunday is not just a national or a global observance. It is not just a day to remember history, to memorialize the participants in war. In Canada today there are 750,000 living veterans, 250,000 with disabilities of various forms. It’s been discovered that in any war psychiatric casualties outnumber deaths 3-1, meaning a soldier is three times as likely to become mentally injured as he is to be killed.
The incidence of PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, is not only being seen more frequently but so are its enduring effects . . . broken marriages, homeless veterans, ruined lives. War has a devastating cost.
In Israel graduating High School classes are taken to the top of the mountain called Masada and there they solemnly proclaim, ‘Never Again’. Never again a holocaust, never again will they be found defenceless.
Remembrance Day is a “Never Again” declaration. Not “never again will there be a war”, but rather “never again will the world be found defenceless against tyranny.” Two thousand years ago Jesus made this observation, “But when you hear of wars and rumours of wars, do not be troubled; for such things must happen, but the end is not yet.” (Mk13:7)
Clearly, “Never Again” is not yet. In Romans 5:7 St. Paul writes, “For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die.”
We will scarcely find a person who will be willing to lay down his or her life for a complete stranger, even though that stranger is a good person. In the military, men and women do lay down their lives for others as their training has readied them to do if necessary. They go into harm’s way with a sense of duty, even ultimate duty.
The Hebrew word ‘righteous’ that St. Paul uses can also have the meaning “innocent.” The Hebrew for ‘good’ can also have the connotation of worthy, upright or honourable. We remember and pray for honourable soldiers who give their lives for the innocent.
St. Paul says that scarcely will someone die for the innocent or righteous and perhaps for a good or upright person somebody might even dare to die. In Romans 5:8 he says, “But God demonstrates His own love towards us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” The term sinners implies those who are against God, at enmity with God.
When we were not worthy in any sense of the word, Jesus died for us. All our attempts at justice and compassion are really pictures of the compassion and justice that God offers when His Son, Jesus, lay down His life. He paid the price of our sin and in the Mass we participate, as the Body of Christ in His eternal life even as we pray for those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for us. We are strengthened to offer our lives for the sake of others in whatever way we can.
Today we remember that there is nothing glorious about war. Today we remember those who pursued hope and faced fears and carried the scars that we might live in freedom. Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord, and let light perpetual shine upon them.
Sunday, 18 October 2020
Every ruler needs to know what God tells King Cyrus in today’s First Reading: “I have called you . . . though you knew me not.” (X 2)
As we cast our eyes south of the border we hear many voices predicting and speculating about flawed human leaders. We must pray that those elected will be instruments of God for life as well as for liberty.
The Roman occupation during Jesus’ day was, in a similar way, a judgment of Israel’s unfaithfulness. Jesus’ words in today’s Gospel are a powerful reminder of this: “Render unto Caesar and unto God what is God’s.” We are exhorted to keep our allegiances in priority because everything belongs to God.
The Lord alone is king and the Kingdom of God is in this world but not of this world.“My Kingdom is not of this world,” Jesus tells us as recorded in John ch. 18; but it begins here in His Church which reflects God’s glory among all peoples. As citizens of heaven (Philippians 3:20), we are called to be a light to the world (Matthew 5:14)—working in faith, labouring in love, and enduring in hope, as today’s Epistle counsels us.
The secular government is there to show concern for the common good and obedience to laws—unless they conflict with God’s commandments as interpreted by the Church (Acts 5:29). So we must pay taxes but we must not submit to the anti-life policies which threaten all humanity.
We owe God everything. Yes, the coin bears Caesar’s image but we, his baptized people, bear the image of God. (Genesis 1:27). We owe God our very lives—all our heart, soul, mind and strength, offered as a living sacrifice of love (Romans 12:1–2) in the Body of Christ.
We pray for our leaders that, like Cyrus the Great, they do God’s will (1 Timothy 2:1–2)—until from the rising of the sun to its setting, all humanity knows that Jesus is Lord.
Readings: Isaiah 45:1,4–6
Friday, 9 October 2020
Monday, 13 July 2020
|The Sower, Vincent Van Gogh|
Saturday, 11 July 2020
Monday, 29 June 2020
Tuesday, 23 June 2020
Sunday, 21 June 2020
We have Covid-19 protocols in effect. Please see the attached bulletin for details.
You may print and bring the bulletin with you since we are not allowed to pass our bulletins at this time.
You will find a PDF version of the bulletin here:
STM PATRONAL 2020
God bless and keep you all.
Tuesday, 19 May 2020
Here is said or sung the Veni Creator Spiritus:
Come, Holy Ghost, our souls inspire,
and lighten with celestial fire,
thou the anointing Spirit art,
who dost thy sevenfold gifts impart.
Thy blesséd unction from above,
is comfort, life, and fire of love,
enable with perpetual light
the dullness of our blinded sight.
Anoint and cheer our soiled face
with the abundance of thy grace.
Keep far our foes, give peace at home;
where thou art Guide, no ill can come.
Teach us to know the Father, Son,
and thee, of both, to be but One;
that through the ages all along,
this may be our endless song:
Praise to thine eternal merit,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.
OUR FATHER, who art in heaven; hallowed be thy Name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
HAIL MARY, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of our death. Amen.
Here is said the Proper Prayer for the Day:
Come, O Holy Ghost, the Lord and Lifegiver; take up thy dwelling within our souls, and make of them thy sacred home. Make us live by grace as adopted children of God. Pervade all the energies of our souls, and create in us fountains of living water, springing up unto eternal life.
Come, O Spirit of Counsel, help and guide us in all our ways, that we may always do thy holy will. Incline our hearts to that which is good, turn them away from all that is evil, and direct us by the path of thy commandments to the goal of eternal life.
Come, O Spirit of Fortitude, and give courage to our souls. Make our hearts strong in all trials and in all distress, pouring forth abundantly into them the gifts of strength, that we may be able to resist the attacks of the devil.
Come, O Spirit of holy Fear, penetrate our inmost hearts, that we may set thee, our Lord and God, before our faces forever; and shun all things that can offend thee, so that we may be made worthy to appear before the pure eyes of thy divine Majesty in the heaven of heavens.
Wednesday, 13 May 2020
The Epistle of Mathetes to Diognetus (A.D. 130) points to Christians -- the Body of Christ, the Church, as the persecuted witness to truth in the world but not of the world.
Christians are indistinguishable from other men either by nationality, language or customs. They do not inhabit separate cities of their own, or speak a strange dialect, or follow some outlandish way of life. Their teaching is not based upon reveries inspired by the curiosity of men. Unlike some other people, they champion no purely human doctrine.
. . . . And yet there is something extraordinary about their lives. They live in their own countries as though they were only passing through. They play their full role as citizens, but labour under all the disabilities of aliens. Any country can be their homeland, but for them their homeland, wherever it may be, is a foreign country . . . . They live in the flesh, but they are not governed by the desires of the flesh. They pass their days upon earth, but they are citizens of heaven. Obedient to the laws, they yet live on a level that transcends the law.
Christians love all men, but all men persecute them. Condemned because they are not understood, they are put to death, but raised to life again. They live in poverty, but enrich many; they are totally destitute, but possess an abundance of everything.
They suffer dishonor, but that is their glory. They are defamed, but vindicated. A blessing is their answer to abuse, deference their response to insult. For the good they do they receive the punishment of malefactors, but even then they rejoice, as though receiving the gift of life. They are attacked by the Jews as aliens, they are persecuted by the Greeks, yet no one can explain the reason for this hatred.
To speak in general terms, we may say that the Christian is to the world what the soul is to the body. As the soul is present in every part of the body, while remaining distinct from it, so Christians are found in all the cities of the world, but cannot be identified with the world. As the visible body contains the invisible soul, so Christians are seen living in the world, but their religious life remains unseen.
. . . . the world hates the Christians, not because they have done it any wrong, but because they are opposed to its enjoyments.
Christians love those who hate them just as the soul loves the body and all its members
. . . . It is by the soul, enclosed within the body, that the body is held together, and similarly, it is by the Christians, detained in the world as in a prison, that the world is held together.
The soul, though immortal, has a mortal dwelling place; and Christians also live for a time amidst perishable things, while awaiting the freedom from change and decay that will be theirs in heaven. As the soul benefits from the deprivation of food and drink, so Christians flourish under persecution. Such is the Christian’s lofty and divinely appointed function . . . .
Tuesday, 12 May 2020