International Mission 2016 Report
Mission Council chose 7 projects to help people in need in five different countries
- Darjeeling Jesuit Province for direct involvement in evangelization
- Save Trust for mining children in Magara, Guntur
- Vellore Diocese - for carpentry tools for the vocational training of young boys
- Multipurpose Social Service Society of the Cuddapah Diocese - for vocational skill training in tailoring and embroidery
- Eritrea: To finish off the Church in Hamedey
- Democratic Republic of Congo: For furniture in the chapel of Notre-Dame University of Kayasi
- Sri Lanka: Happy Life for drug prevention and awareness program, and practical leadership skills in Mirigama
- Nepal: Aid to rescue young women from prostitution through Servants Anonymous in Calgary
As we conclude this Jubilee Year of Mercy, I’m reminded of the words of Pope Francis at the beginning of his papacy: “Let us be renewed by God’s mercy and let us become agents of this mercy, channels through which God can make justice and peace flourish.” For the past seventeen years, the people of our diocese, through Mission Mexico, have been agents of God’s transforming mercy in the lives of many of the poorest of the poor in southern Mexico. As they have benefited from our corporal works of mercy, so we have benefited from their spiritual works of mercy on our behalf. The corporal works of mercy have borne fruit this past year in northern Mexico near Tijuana. The Trinitarian Sisters of that outreach have reciprocated in spiritual ways that have profoundly benefited members of our diocese. The Table of Mercy project was made possible by both your financial donations and time and labour of many Alberta volunteers.
As Bishop Henry has so well noted: “What an example of reciprocal mercy with which to conclude the Jubilee Year of Mercy!”
Gratefully yours on behalf of Mexico’s poorest of the poor,
Fr. Fred Monk, Founder, Mission Mexico
Table of Mercy
John Paul, Table of Mercy Project Coordinator
St. Mary’s Parish, Cochrane, Alberta
“In April 2016, a group of us visited a monastery in Tecate, Mexico and met the Trinitarian Sisters of Mary. They had been praying for many years for God to send someone who could help them construct a soup kitchen/community meeting place at their convent/retreat centre. Thus began Mission Mexico’s Table of Mercy project. Many volunteers from our diocese have answered the call to come and build our special kitchen for the sisters. This beautiful, generous and loving group of nuns that minister to thousands of the poor and hungry each year, have demonstrated to all of us what it means to love as Christ loved us.
Each of us has brought home to Alberta a special gift in our hearts that we never expected.
If God calls you to assist in Mission Mexico projects, don’t be afraid to answer that call. His generosity knows no bounds and you will be given back more than you can fathom.”
Mission Mexico Onsite Representative
“Here in the mountains, there are so many needs in so many different places, and Mission Mexico is a trusted partner in the struggle for life. It isn‘t that Mission Mexico can resolve all the problems of the poor, but it has a proven track record of accompanying the poor as they strive to build a world of greater justice for themselves and others. The people are so noble and the hopes are so tangible that it seems like the greatest blessing on earth to be allowed to journey with them.”
Mission Mexico is an outreach project of Catholics in the Diocese of Calgary. Our goal is to provide funding for micro-economic, education, health and human rights projects in one of the poorest regions in the state of Guerrero, Mexico.
For more information visit : www.missionmexico.com
One of the Mission Council’s mandates is Home Mission. Home Mission in the Diocese of Calgary consists of the four First Nations’ Reserves. Three of these churches have their own parish priests and administration, parish council and various ministries. One church is a mission of a city parish. These First Nation churches are becoming more self-reliant and less isolated, forming bonds with one another and nearby parishes.Kateri Council
Kateri Council is made up of representatives from the four native churches and meets bimonthly. The council was formed because Bishop Paul O’Bryne saw the value of the native voice being heard at diocesan level and he opened a path for this to happen. It is the forum for sharing successes and failures, discussing difficulties and seeking solutions together. This is a truly native council. The natives themselves asked for their pastors to attend the Kateri meetings because they wanted to work with them for their people and not separately.Beginning of the Missions on the Reservations
The voyageurs and missionaries came from Montreal to the North West through the Red River in 1818, to Fort Edmonton in 1843, and to what was later the Calgary Diocese in 1873.
- 1881 – Bishop Vital Grandin, bishop of the Diocese of St. Albert, “visited the Southern Missions and brought with him two lay brothers, Boone and Alexandre Lambert to built residences on the three principle reserves.”
- November 1881 – Father Legal, O.M.I. (later Bishop of St. Albert) came to the Southern Missions as Temporary Superior.
- August 1881 – Father Albert Lacombe, O.M.I. came to Calgary as Superior of the Southern Missions.
- The Catholic mission activity in Southern Alberta was entirely the responsibility of the Oblate Order until the Diocese of Calgary was formed in 1913, and all the mission work with the Indians and on the reservations has been their work from the beginning in 1873 until 2012.
[Book Reference © 1973 • From the Buffalo to the Cross: A History of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Calgary]Locations of the Reservations
Settled “on a tract of land on the Bow River at Blackfoot Crossing.”
Settled “at the foot of the Porcupine Hills near Pincher Creek.”
Settled “between the St. Mary’s and the Belly Rivers.”
Were “given a tract between the Elbow River and Fish Creek” in 1878 after they asked “to be separated from the Blackfoot” and given their own reservation.
The Blackfoot Reserve
In the spring of 1881, the Oblate lay brothers built a small mission residence at Blackfoot Crossing. Bishop Grandin visited it and on Trinity Sunday of that year, blessed it and called it the Mission of the Most Holy Trinity. The mission was visited from Calgary until 1883 when Father Doucet went there as resident missionary and remained until 1887. Father Doucet and Father Legal spent most of the summer of 1882 with them and baptized 143 Indians.
The first house was washed away in a flood in 1883. Father Lacombe visited and had a new mission built with the help of the Indians. It was then that Father Doucet began to live permanently at the Blackfoot Reserve [ibid].
St. Paul’s Parish in Brocket, AB is a thriving community with a mission to be “fully devoted to Jesus by opening our arms to those in search of the truth.” Fr. Roy’s gentle presence brings more people to the Church, as there are more requests for children’s Baptism. There is hope for the community and each individual’s contribution makes the community alive.
On September 2016, the new flooring project at St. Paul’s has been completed. The old carpet caused many issues such as health problems, smell, dust, etc. Fr. Roy and the parishioners are happy with this new and clean floor to celebrate the Mass.
PO Box 68
Brocket, AB T0K 0H0