POPE FRANCIS HAS ACCEPTED THE INVITATION of the Bishops of Canada to visit the Church in Canada in the context of a pilgrimage of healing and reconciliation with our Indigenous sisters and brothers. The statement of the Holy Father was published on the Vatican News website. While no date has been established for the visit, it will build on three years of constructive dialogue between the Canadian Bishops, the Holy See, and Indigenous Peoples who have generously shared their experiences and stories about the sufferings and challenges that continue to this day. The delegation of Indigenous Peoples and Bishops to the Vatican in December will allow the Pope to hear directly from Indigenous people on the historic and ongoing legacy of Residential Schools, and discuss with them their hopes for the visit in service of ongoing reconciliation.
Heart to Heart - October 2021
Bishop Crosby's weekly letter to clergy and parishioners in the Diocese.
THE AMORIS LAETITIA YEAR of the Family was opened earlier this year by Pope Francis. A Pastoral Letter to the Diocese of Hamilton, dated today, was sent to Pastors and Parishes earlier this week for distribution to parishioners. Today is the Feast Day of Saint John Paul II, an appropriate day for such a letter. The sainted Pope was a great advocate of the family; he published Familiaris Consortio, which Amoris Laetitia draws from, and he wrote Theology of the Body. Many of his works relate to the importance of marriage and family!
THE OPENING OF THE SYNODAL PATH in preparation for the 2023 Synod took place last Sunday in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The homily of Pope Francis set out his hopes and expectations for the Synod: “Celebrating a Synod means walking on the same road, walking together. Let us look at Jesus. First, he encounters the rich man on the road; he then listens to his questions, and finally he helps him discern what he must do to inherit eternal life. Encounter, listen and discern. I would like to reflect on these three verbs that characterize the Synod.” Read the entire homily here. The Diocesan celebration for the beginning of the Synodal Path will take place at the Cathedral Basilica of Christ the King on Sunday, at the 4:00 p.m. Mass. In the coming weeks the Diocesan Synod Committee will send to our Parishes, Catholic organizations, and other groups and institutions an outline of the process the Diocese will follow to encourage the broadest possible participation in the consultation leading up to the Synod. We pray for God’s blessing on this important initiative of Pope Francis, and our Diocesan response.
ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI PARISH, KITCHENER marked the 60th Anniversary of the construction of its church with a special Mass of Thanksgiving. A procession outdoors followed, where a new and animated statue of the Saint joyfully praising God for creation has been erected! Timothy Schmaltz, the world-renowned artist who created the statue, was present for the blessing. Many Priests from the Congregation of the Resurrection, who have pastored the Parish from its establishment, were present for the gathering. Again, we offer our thanks and our congratulations.
POPE FRANCIS HAS ANNOUNCED that the next Synod of Bishops will take place in October 2023. The theme for the Synod is: For a Synodal Church: Communion, Participation, and Mission. It will be the culmination of a “three-year path” involving the People of God at every level of the Church. Pope Francis will officially inaugurate the event on the weekend of October 9-10. The first phase of the synodal path will take place in each Diocese beginning on the weekend of October 17th, under the leadership of the Bishop. This will be marked in the Sunday liturgies in all our parishes, and most particularly at the 4 p.m. Mass at the Cathedral Basilica of Christ the King. A Synod Committee has been established composed of David and Linda Dayler (chairpersons), Paula Dawson, Bishop Wayne Lobsinger and Monsignor Kroetsch. They will facilitate the synodal process so that as many parishioners as are interested in participating can be engaged. More information will be provided as the process gets underway.