Wednesday, 2 December 2020

Happy Advent!!
Check out the Virtual Advent Calendar put together by Good Shepherd Parish with the help of some of our students!! 


Good Shepherd Virtual Advent Calendar 




Friday, 27 November 2020

Advent

Advent 2020

Sunday, November 29th, we begin the season of Advent by celebrating the 1st Sunday of Advent.  Advent is our time of preparation and time of waiting for the coming of Jesus. It is a rich and powerful season of the Church year.

We often miss Advent's power because these December weeks are full of secular Christmas parties and preparations for Christmas. Each year, the busyness of this season serves to distract us from having an Advent season that truly prepares us for the celebration of Christmas, with all its meaning.

We must see through the eyes of Faith when we look at our Advent preparations for Christmas rather than the screen of Society.  The computer screen, the phone screen, the tv screen or the movie screen.

Through eyes of Faith, we see the birth of the Christ-child, Emmanuel, Prince of Peace. We see those in need, the homeless and the hungry.  The screens only block our view of the truth and keep us separated from what is real. During this Advent Season make special effort to put down, turn off or close out the screen when you are able and connect with family and the Christ child.

Let us begin with the sign of our faith.  

In the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

1st Week of Advent, Hope

Dear Jesus, you are the hope in our messy world. This Advent, help us slow down, listen to your voice, and focus on what’s really important. We place our hope in you as we prepare our hearts to celebrate your birth on Christmas. We ask this through Christ of Lord. Amen.

 

2nd Week of Advent, Love

Dear Jesus, may the light of your love always shine in our hearts. As Christmas draws closer, we marvel at your great love for us. Let your love transform every aspect of our lives and touch everyone we encounter. Our hearts are open to you, Jesus. We ask this through Christ of Lord. Amen. 

 

3rd Week of Advent, Joy

Dear Jesus, help us focus on you during this busy season. May we stay aware of the joy you bring into our lives. We want to find you in the everyday moments and come with hearts of gratitude to your manger on Christmas. We ask this through Christ of Lord. Amen.

 

4th Week of Advent, Peace

Dear Jesus, you entered our world on Christmas as the Prince of Peace. This Advent, as we strive to become the-best-version-of-ourselves, fill us with a deep and abiding peace. Help us share that peace with everyone we encounter, especially those who need it most. We ask this through Christ of Lord. Amen.

 

Advent Prayer for Families

Heavenly Father, your son, Jesus, is your greatest gift to us, a great sign of your love. Guide us as we strive to walk in that love together as a family this Advent. As we prepare our hearts for Christmas, bring us closer to each other and to your son. Give us the grace and strength we need every day. Help us to always trust in you. Come, Lord Jesus, lead all people closer to you. Come and dispel the darkness of our world with the light of your love. Amen.

Tuesday, 24 November 2020

News From Good Shepherd Parish


Good Shepherd's Confirmation registration is now open. Registrations are being accepted now with the preparation small groups to begin in early 2021. Students and families can find more information at GetConfirmed.ca

Get linked to their Facebook Page Here > Get Confirmed! 

Friday, 30 October 2020

Treaties Recognition Week 2020

November 1-7, 2020

Treaties are legally binding agreements that set out the rights, responsibilities and relationships of First Nations and the federal and provincial governments. They form the basis of the relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

Although many treaties were signed more than a century ago, treaty commitments are just as valid today as they were then. First Nations were the original occupants of this land we call Ontario. The British Crown (government) and First Nations negotiated and signed treaties with the intent of delivering mutual benefits. First Nations signed as independent, self-governing nations. 

 Ontario is covered by 46 treaties and other agreements. Use the interactive treaties map to find out which treaty applies to any location in the province. Native-Land Interactive Map Despite the promise of early treaties and the mutually respectful partnerships they established, Indigenous peoples were targeted by colonial policies designed to exploit, assimilate and eradicate them. Today, the Ontario government is working to rebuild trust and relationships with treaty partners and Indigenous peoples. Part of that effort includes educating Ontarians about the role treaties play in our lives and relationships with each other today.

Here are some links to help in our journey together because... 
"We Are All Treaty People"





Hayden King on Treaties

Hayden King is Anishinaabe from Beausoleil First Nation on Gchi'mnissing, in Huronia Ontario. Hayden has been teaching Indigenous politics and policy since 2007 with academic positions at McMaster, Carleton and Ryerson Universities. His research and commentary on Indigenous nationhood and colonialism in Canada is published widely.

Hayden has also served as the Senior Policy Advisor to the Ontario Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs, Director of Research at the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business, and Scholar-in-Residence at the Conference Board of Canada. He is a Senior Fellow at Massey College, adjunct professor at Carleton, and the co-founder of the language-arts collective, the Ogimaa Mikana Project.


Wednesday, 28 October 2020

What's Going On

These Covid times have changed so many things for us and we are experiencing things in a different way right now, that's for sure!!  One of the things that might be challenged but doesn't have to change is our FAITH!!


Included in this post are the online happenings and the in-person happenings at our local parishes. And man... they have been hard at work putting together so many things for their faith communities.  
Take the opportunity to pop in, join, scroll or twitch !!



St. Anne's Parish

On facebook, we livestream Masses, the family rosary, periodic "shows" by our priests etc....)


Our Instagram: @steannechurch

Our website with resources, bible studies, access to FORMED (sort of a Catholic Netflix)

Most importantly of interest to our students would be our all new Twitch stream.   Ste Anne's Fr. Robert @Fr_Roboto and St. Michael's (Leamington) Fr. Steve Marsh @padrepwnag will be hosting "Just Business" a video gaming live stream where they go head to head, and take questions from the viewers. 
Just Business: Friday Night Twitch Stream
To easily hop on the stream here is the link: https://www.twitch.tv/padrepwnage  and https://www.twitch.tv/fr_roboto
Our newly elevated Blessed, Blessed Carlo Acutis - patron saint of computer programmers and video gamers will be mentioned.

Weekend Mass Times: Ste. Anne’s Parish

www.SteAnneParish.ca
Sat 5:30pm - In-person or live stream
Sun 8:00am - In-person or live stream 
Sun 10:00am - In-person
Sun 12:00pm - In-person or live stream 
You can watch live on Facebook. In-person attendance requires reservations online at BackToMass.com


Good Shepherd Parish

Like & Subscribe at:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeYOjORDxLN_ZRUK3FyYDsQ

https://www.facebook.com/GSLakeshore/


  Refuel Thursdays – In Person or online



 





Alpha – It is not too late to join

www.GSLakeshore.com/Alpha

 

AV Team – Great opportunities for high school students to volunteer

Image and description: https://www.instagram.com/p/CGNEK3ynXqF/

Sign up at GSLakeshore.com/AV

Podcast (Weekly Homilies) available on all platforms:



 Sign up to help with our online children’s ministry:

https://gslakeshore.com/childrensministry

 Serve in new ways at:

www.GSLakeshore.com/Serve


Weekend Mass Times: Good Shepherd Parish

www.GSLakeshore.com
Sat 5pm - In-person or live stream
Sun 9am - In-person or live stream
Sun 11am - In-person or live stream
Sun 7pm - Replay on live stream
You can watch live on YouTube, Facebook, or Twitch. In-person attendance requires reservations online at BackToMass.com

Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Sunday, 31 May 2020

Good Shepherd Parish invites you...

Is COVID-19 turning you into a monster? Do you feel like a zombie? Unemotional? Slow? Lethargic? Non-communicative? Join us as we spill the tea.

This is not your average youth group event. This one-hour event happens at your home with 15 other teens. You will not want to miss this "Monster Tea Party". 
Sign up to save your spot!


Friday, 22 May 2020

A Year of Prayer

A Year of Prayer


A year ago at the Mass of Chrism, Bishop Fabbro announced that beginning on Pentecost Sunday, 9 June 2019, and lasting until the next Pentecost Sunday, 31 May 2020, we would observe a special Year of Prayer for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on our diocese as we seek to be “a mission-oriented Church that forms disciples of Jesus”. 
On the day of Pentecost, the disciples were all together “in one place”. We cannot be together physically during the pandemic, but we can be united spiritually during these days which are meant to be an intense preparation for the Great Feast of Pentecost. 

Bishop Fabbro is asking that we mark these days, which will bring to a conclusion our Year of Prayer, by a novena to the Holy Spirit. The novena will begin on Friday, 22 May, and continue until Saturday, 30 May, the Vigil of Pentecost. His hope is that all the faithful of our diocese, all our parishes and our families will unite in prayer each day of the novena, and that all of us will include in the different prayers we use, a daily recitation of the common prayer for the Year of Prayer (below).


Link to the Bishop's letter
A Letter from Bishop Fabbro



Year of Prayer
Send forth your Spirit, O Lord,
and fill the hearts of your people
with an ardent desire to follow Jesus,
to be his missionary disciples.
Fill us with joy and a desire to know your word.
May we boldly proclaim the Good News to others;
for when we help others to know that God loves them,
they will know true happiness.
Fill us with a deep desire for the Eucharist.
May we recognize Jesus
in the proclamation of the Scriptures
and in the Breaking of the Bread;
for when we are united with Jesus,
joy is constantly born anew.
Fill us with a true love of neighbour.
May we seek opportunities for reconciliation,
and with big hearts serve those in need;
for in serving them, we know we are serving your Son.
With the help of the Holy Spirit,
may we commit ourselves
to loving you and doing your will.
We make this prayer
through Christ our Lord. 
Amen.

Wednesday, 20 May 2020

In Light of The Recent Announcement

In light of the recent Ministry of Education announcement, I share with you a prayer written by my colleague, Mrs. Erin Malone Walls, Campus Minister at St. Joe's High School.


Lord, we pray for all staff and students who learned with finality that we won’t return to school this year.

We pray for daycare kids and preschoolers
who are too young to understand
why they can’t see their teachers and friends,
who miss the stories being read,
the songs being sung and all the creativity of play.

Engaging children with prayerWe pray for the elementary students
who miss their teachers and friends.
For children who will miss their classes and opportunities,
who thrive through being challenged,
who depend upon school meals,
who have learned to socialize and flourish.

Prayer 101: How to Start Talking to God - LifeTeen.com for ...We pray for high school students
who miss their teachers and friends.
For those who struggle with the loss of spirit and belonging.
For those who miss the competitions in the classrooms,
in the gyms, on the stage.
For those who have spent the year finding themselves
as musicians, athletes, artists, socialites, scholars, and more,
but now feel stuck at home
without a place to fully share who they want to be.
We pray especially for our grade 12 students
who have been planning and looking forward
to the traditional prom and graduation ceremony,
who now have to cope with lost dreams and feelings of disappointment.

We pray for the vulnerable.
For families without options of daycare.
For parents who feel ill-equipped.
For students who depend on the structure of school
in an otherwise chaotic life.
For the children with special education needs.
For those without technology, that have been given unequal opportunity and are feeling left behind. 

We pray for all of our staff
A Prayer for Our Children's Teachers - Blessed Is She
who miss the daily interaction with students and colleagues.
Who worry about our students,
who aren’t able to reach out to our students in need,
who don’t get the opportunity
to celebrate our students’ achievements,
who didn’t get to say goodbye. 

All-knowing God, losing a school year hurts.
Teach us to live in the reality of our feelings
yet hold on to hope.
Shelter the vulnerable, help those who are broken,
comfort those who mourn.
Be our hope and our strength.
Help us to be that hope for one another.
Amen


Erin Malone Walls, Campus Minister, St. Joe's High School

Monday, 11 May 2020

A Reflection on Mary, 

Mother of God and Mother of All of Us


6 Fascinating Facts about Mary, Mother of Jesus - Beliefnet
During these unprecedented times in our world, there are so many hidden heroes who are quietly working behind the scenes and literally saving the lives of strangers. These “front line” workers have been called to  … as St. Teresa of Calcutta says “do small things with great love.” Our world has become very aware of the value of these individuals and the work they accomplish each and every day. 


Our faith also has a person who shares in the similar qualities of our front line workers. This person is our Blessed Mother Mary. We are invited to think about Mary’s life, as it was during her time on Earth. A young girl who was given the task of bringing new life into the world and a life that would change the world. Her “YES” to the plan God presented to her not only changed her life, but changed the world.

Imagine this young girl, unaware of how God’s plan would be fulfilled. Imagine her fear of the unknown, her own doubts about her ability to succeed and raise her son to be the person God called him to be. 

She had to trust in the plan God had for her and she promised to fulfill that plan to its completion. Day after day, our front line workers face the same uncertainty. These men and women have to trust in their own skills that God gave them and, have faith and hope in their own actions while they struggle to save lives. 

The Solemnity of Mary, the Holy Mother of GodHoly Spirit Catholic ...We also have a plan. We are called to trust in our own abilities to succeed at what we have been asked to do. Many of us are experiencing anxiety, depression and frustration. We long for days to be together again. Like Mary, we are people who have been called to change our world for the better. Our actions today are altering the course of human history and years from now, people will look at us to see how we coped with the reality of our human existence. 

This week, we can reflect on Mary’s life and the lives of our front line workers. These are people of courage who bring hope. These are people of faith who shine light into the darkness. During Education Week, we looked at “igniting hope” in our world. This week, may we challenge one another to keep the flame of hope alive in our hearts, minds, homes and communities. 

Reflection by Campus Minister, Jeff Gendron

Sunday, 10 May 2020

Student Reflection Friday

The Life of a Teen in Isolation

By Siobhan O’Donoghue

The ordinary life we all knew has changed before our very eyes and it can be overwhelming with so much uncertainty.  This is a time in history that we will all remember.  This pandemic has affected all of us in our own ways and it is through this tough time that we are being challenged to improve.
I can’t quite pinpoint the hardest part of this pandemic.  Obviously not getting to see my friends is a struggle but I would rather do my part now so that hopefully this can reduce the length of the restrictions we are currently under.  School has definitely taken a turn however I don’t mind online classes so far.  Personally my biggest struggle is not being able to visit my family who live out-of-town.  My grandparents require more help as they are getting older and I worry for them.  Being so far and unable to run errands or do simple chores for them isn’t easy.  
Even through these tough times I am still working part-time which is both a blessing and a curse.  I’m happy to do my part to serve the community and it helps to get out of the house.  However putting myself at risk by interacting with so many people seems to go against all the other steps I have been taking to stay safe. Customers also tend to be more intolerant which adds to unneeded stress and frustration.  
Throughout this unprecedented period, I have found myself turning to God more than usual.  My family and I usually go to church every Sunday.  With churches being closed we “go to” church via live stream.  It’s definitely a different feeling being just the four of us rather than a whole faith community but it means a lot to still be able to hear the sermon and nurture my faith.  
With so much darkness in our world right now I have found myself more grateful for the little things.  I don’t want to say that God is trying to punish us but I think that he is trying to readjust our thinking to make us more grateful.  We took advantage of being able to go places and to see our families and friends but when everything is over, I hope that people will be more appreciative.  God gave us one life and it is our job to make the most of it.
It’s quite simple to be lazy while being stuck at home.  Having extra free time has led me to do more of the things I enjoy but didn’t make time for previously.  This is a unique opportunity we are being given and should do those things we “never have time for”.

The world may seem like a dark place at the moment but it is important to remember all of our blessings and that there is still good going on in the world.  Together we will get through this. And as a great poet once said “You can’t have a rainbow without the rain.”

Monday, 4 May 2020

Sunday, 26 April 2020

Student Reflection Wednesday

What I am looking forward to after isolation
By Nolan Bergeron

When I first walked through the doors of Saint Anne’s in September, I never imagined that my second semester would be spent mainly inside my house. Most grade nines spend their whole year learning at school, but that all changed when Covid-19 broke out; the first world pandemic since the 1918 Influenza outbreak. From my perspective it seemed like events kept getting worse and worse gradually. By March 14, it seemed like someone had pressed pause on the world. Sporting events were postponed, churches and schools were closed, and all school trips were canceled.

This was extremely shocking news for me, as Saint Anne’s band trip to New York City was planned for April 22-25. I had been looking forward to this trip ever since it was announced in September. I knew the trip would have been an amazing experience, as I had attended the 2019 Nashville/Memphis band trip, which was a blast. New York would have been an awesome trip, but I’m sure many others can agree with me that it’s one of the last places we want to be right now.

Though these are very uncertain times, we can still be optimistic and look forward to doing the things we love. I am most looking forward to seeing my friends and family, as well as continuing to play music with all of my friends in the band. I am also eager to start learning in person with my teachers and classmates, since Google Classroom isn’t my ideal choice of education.

Despite all the churches being closed, there are still many ways we can connect with God. Thankfully, there is a way to watch mass on YouTube livestreams. My family and I tune into a stream every Sunday, and I can say it feels good to still have faith and a connection with God amidst all of this.

In conclusion, I think we can all say that we are looking forward to getting back into routine with our normal lives. I would like to thank all of the healthcare workers on the front lines who are risking their lives to save others. I know that we are all in this together, and that we will overcome this virus very soon.

I will end off with a quote of hope that reads: “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift of God, which is why we call it the present.”


Student Reflection Thursday

A Reflection On Hope
By Noah Gascon

2020 will forever be known as the year our world stopped turning. None of us have ever experienced anything like this crisis in our entire lives.
For many, what started out as a school closure announcement on a Thursday evening before march break, has exploded into one of the greatest challenges our society has faced in decades. Life as we know it has been put on hold. The most vulnerable members of our community are being affected the most. Our economy is treading on thin ice. These are definitely not normal times.

However, this crisis has brought the best out of so many of us. As I go for my walks everyday, kids in my neighbourhood are drawing “Thank you” messages for our frontline workers in their driveways with chalk. People around the world have been coming outside at 7pm every night to give a thunderous applause to our healthcare superheroes.  Neighbours are checking up on one another to stay safe. Volunteers are stepping up to help keep our communities fed. Friends and family have helped in keeping our small businesses afloat. Nurses and Doctors have provided patients of all stripes with compassionate care even in these emotionally straining times.

These actions are what truly represents our God given human spirit. All of these wonderful things have been happening because of the unique spirits that God has instilled within all of us. I have never believed that good things happen out of thin air. There is always a spiritual presence that lies within our decisions to do good in our everyday lives. Churches being closed have cut many people off from traditional ways of being with God. However, I’ve always believed that God lies in places beyond the church. His spirit is what is causing us to come together even when we’re apart. Today, many more people are living in the image that Christ always wanted for all of us. He wanted a world where people looked out for one another and that’s exactly what we’re seeing today, you just have to look out your window.

In addition to this, we’ve all had the opportunity to have deeper reflections on our personal lives and what really matters to us. This pandemic has exposed us to our collective blindness of what we used to take for granted. The trip to the grocery store, the visit with Grandma, the night at the movie theatre, seeing friends and extended family or even being able to go to school are all things we never thought would vanish.

Although I’ve missed all of those things, I’ve realized that there is a deeper meaning to life and we must appreciate every moment we have with each other. I mourn with all the families who have lost loved ones to this deadly virus and won’t have the opportunity to do that.

I look forward to being reunited with friends, family and co workers when this is all over. This is a major storm but God would never put is through something that us and him could not weather together. A very wise person once told me that life wasn’t worth living if there wasn’t hope. The fantastic news is that there is so much hope every day even when it may not seem like it.

You just have to look at how God is working in ways that we wouldn’t expect. I promise, we will get through this... together.