This year, the Church celebrates the centenary of the apparitions of Our Lady to the three children in Fatima, Portugal. According to the witnesses in 1917, Our Lady appeared to Jacinta, Francisco and Lucia on the 13th of each month, from May to October of the same year, except in August when she appeared on August 19. The Fatima Apparitions are special in that their universal message of salvation is strongly connected to the Gospel. The message of Our Lady of Fatima calls us to prayer, reparation, penance and sacrifice.
In his Introduction to The Message of Fatima published by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI Emeritus) points out, “These manifestations can never contradict the content of faith, and must therefore have their focus in the core of Christ’s proclamation: the Father’s love which leads men and women to conversion and bestows the grace required to abandon oneself to him with filial devotion. This too is the message of Fatima which, with its urgent call to conversion and penance, draws us to the heart of the Gospel.” Cardinal Ratzinger also said that, “Fatima is undoubtedly the most prophetic of modern apparitions.”
By decree of the Bishop of Calgary and in honour of the Centennial Anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima, the faithful who visit Our Lady of Fatima Church in Calgary and who devotedly pray before the statue of Our Lady of Fatima, invoking her intercession from May 13, 2017 to December 31, 2017 will receive a partial indulgence provided that they are “baptized, not excommunicated, and in the state of grace at least at the end of the prescribed works” [CIC 996 §1].
By decree of Pope Francis, a plenary indulgence is also available to the faithful who meet the ordinary conditions — go to Confession and Communion, be interiorly detached from sin and in a state of grace, and pray for the intentions of the Holy Father — and “who visit with devotion an image of Our Lady of Fatima solemnly displayed for public veneration in any temple, oratory or adequate place, during the days of the anniversary of the apparitions (the 13th of each month from May to October 2017), and devotedly participate there in any celebration or prayer in honour of the Virgin Mary, pray the Our Father, recite the symbol of faith (Creed) and invoke Our Lady of Fatima” [ Jubilee Year of Fatima, Concession of Plenary Indulgence ].
The Church of Our Lady of Fatima will hold a mass and rosary the 13th day of each month at 6:30 p.m. After the mass and rosary, the chapel will be open for those desiring to further fulfill the conditions of the plenary indulgence.
An indulgence is a remission of sin before God of the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven. According to Saint John Paul II, through an indulgence, God grants the prayer of the Church that the temporal penalty for sin be remitted. By God’s grace, participation in a prayer or action that has an indulgence attached to it brings about restoration and reparation with God. “The Church has a treasury, then, which is ‘dispensed’ as it were through indulgences. This ‘distribution’ should not be understood as a sort of automatic transfer, as if we were speaking of ‘things’. It is instead the expression of the Church’s full confidence of being heard by the Father when, in view of Christ’s merits and, by his gift, she asks him to mitigate or cancel the painful aspect of punishment by fostering its medicinal aspect through other channels of Grace” [ St. John Paul II, General Audience, Wednesday, 29 September 1999, 4 ].
By celebrating the Centennial year of Fatima, we give thanks to God for all the blessings He spread over us. Our Lady of Fatima parish had its genesis in 1970. For many years Fr. Vozza of Holy Trinity Parish offered monthly masses for Calgary’s Portuguese Catholics. Then, Bishop O’Byrne appointed a priest to assist the Portuguese community. Fr. Franklin E. Trudeau was sent to Portugal to learn the language of the people. He was the first pastor of the Portuguese Catholic Mission and the masses were offered at the Croatian church. The mission continued to flourish in the 1980s, with St. John’s Parish extending assistance from 1979 to 1984 when the congregation acquired its own makeshift church. With the enthusiastic guidance of Fr. Valentino de Freitas, parish pastor from 1987 to 1995, the Portuguese community built Our Lady of Fatima Church. The Portuguese faithful of Our Lady of Fatima parish have kept the message of Fatima burning in their hearts and embodied in their worship since the earliest days. The event of Fatima has provided a spiritual compass that guides the faithful to Jesus through Mary.
(Our Lady of Fatima Church is open to the public from May 13 on every Tuesday 3:00 to 8:00 p.m., Wednesday 1:00 to 8:00 p.m., Friday 3:00 to 8:00 p.m., Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and Sunday 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. for those desiring the obtain the above partial indulgence or simply to pray)
In the May 2017 edition of The Carillon, an icon of Our Lady of Fatima was featured on the front page. The painter, sacred art artist Vivian Imbruglia, offers us an explanation of the icon and its symbols. CLICK HERE TO READ MORE
In 2015, the first Walk for One Rock took place over a period of two days. When Fr. Joseph Nagothu heard Bishop Henry’s request for priests to get more involved, he decided to respond to the invitation and began the Walk for One Rock to raise more awareness for the One Rock Festival. The desire was that many others would participate in this walk. The journey began at St. Rita’s Parish in Rockyford, Alberta, home of the first One Rock Festival. The participants made the 80 km journey by foot to St. Thomas More Parish in Calgary. This pilgrimage walk created the opportunity to spread the word about this great festival of faith, as well as to raise necessary funds for it. Together the pilgrims walked, sang and prayed, all rejoicing in the name of Jesus. Some walked the whole distance, and others the distance that their time would allow.
It was an enriching experience where we were able to spend time with others who believe in Jesus. While walking we met strangers on the journey, and shared bread together thanks to the generosity of volunteers who prepared sandwiches, and provided places for us to stop along the way to be refreshed. To journey together with love and faith in God, can be considered the reward for having had the strength to complete the journey. Not only was there a spiritual reward, but the participants were welcomed to a huge feast prepared by the parishioners of St. Thomas More Parish.
Inspired by the Lord and everyone who participated in the walk, we rejoiced! We all shared a memorable experience, and were not discouraged by the challenges that were encountered. Having the chance to dedicate your actions, your time and yourself fully to the most worthy cause in our lives ensured memories for a lifetime. Now you can be a part of the experience this year!
Another Walk for One Rock will be taking place on Friday, June 9, and for a $5.00 entrance fee all are welcome to join several priests of the Diocese for this occasion. Again, we will start at St. Rita’s Parish in Rockyford, and finish in Strathmore. The walk should be full of spiritual and physical rewards for all who participate. Those who wish to participate or donate please go to www.onerock.ca for more information.
The Most Rev. William T. McGrattan, Bishop of the Diocese of Calgary, has issued a decree of partial indulgence to be granted during the Jubilee Year of Fatima.
The partial indulgence can be obtained by visiting the Our Lady of Fatima Parish at 4747 30 St. SE, between the dates of April 18, 2017 and December 31, 2017 (see visiting times below). Those who seek to obtain this partial indulgence must "devotedly pray before the statue of Our Lady of Fatima," invoking her intercession.
In addition, the faithful must be reminded, according to the Code of Canon Law, the following:
- "To be capable of gaining indulgences, a person must be baptized, not excommunicated, and in the state of grace at least at the end of the prescribed works" (Canon 996 § 1)
- "To gain indulgences, however, a capable subject must have at least the general intention of acquiring them and must fulfill the enjoined works in the established time and the proper method, according to the tenor of the grant" (§ 2)
In addition, the Holy Father Pope Francis has also granted a plenary indulgence which can be obtained throughout the Jubilee Year, which began on November 27, 2016 and ending on November 26, 2017.
This plenary indulgence is granted through the following:
- By making a pilgrimage to the Shrine of Fatime in Portugal, and "devotedly participate in a celebration or prayer in honor of the Virgin Mary." In addition, the individual must also pray the Our Father, recite the Creed, and invoke Our Lady of Fatima
- By visiting, with devotion, and praying before an image of Our Lady of Fatima that is displayed for public veneration, during the anniversary days of the apparitions (the 13th of each month from May to October 2017). In addition, the individual must "participate there in any celebration or prayer in honor of the Virgin Mary" and pray the Our Father, recite the Creed, and invoke Our Lady of Fatima
- For the elderly and infirm: praying before an image of Our Lady of Fatima and spiritually uniting to God, through the Blessed Mother, all their "prayers and pains, or the sacrifices of their own lives"
To obtain the plenary indulgence, the faithful must fulfill the ordinary conditions: go to Confession, receive Holy Communion, pray for the intentions of the Holy Father, and be truly repentant and have firm resolve to be detached from sin.
Click here to read Concession of Plenary Indulgence, issued from the Shrine of Fatima, in full.
Our Lady of Fatima Parish: Centennial Celebrations and Visiting Times
Address: 4747 30th St. SE. Visiting times are the following: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday (3PM - 8PM). Saturday (10AM - 6PM). Sunday (8AM - 2PM)
- Wednesday, May 10, 2017:
- 6:30 PM - Rosary Followed by Holy Mass
- 8:00 PM - All Generations Will Call Me Blessed: A concert in honor of Our Lady in 5 languages
- Thursday, May 11, 2017
- 6:30PM - Holy Mass
- 7:30 PM - The Rosary Rediscovered: Experience the beauty of the Rosary in its choral recitation, live classical harp music, and teachings by recent Popes
- Friday, May 12, 2017
- 6:30 PM - Rosary followed by Holy Mass
- 8:00 PM - Dramatic performance of the Fatima apparitions (English)
- Saturday, May 13, 2017
- 5:00 PM - Rosary
- 6:00 PM - Solemn Mass presided by Bishop McGrattan, followed by candlelight procession
- Sunday, May 14, 2017
- 12:00 PM - Holy Mass, folowwed by dramatic performance of the Fatima apparitions (Portuguese)
On the evening of April 10, 2017 Bishop William T. McGrattan will celebrate one of the most significant liturgical events of the church year. Bishop McGrattan will gather with the priests, deacons, and laity of the Diocese at the Cathedral for the Chrism Mass. The gathering of a diocesan community around its bishop is the preeminent manifestation of the local church. The local church is one body made up of many parts with Christ as its head. The body is united with the crucified and risen Jesus — God’s anointed one — through baptism and as a community shares in the riches and consolation of Christ’s gift of the Holy Spirit through the sacramental ministry of its bishop and priests.
The Chrism Mass highlights the manifestation of the priests’ communion with the bishop. Here also, the bishop acknowledges the services of the priests and deacons, often recognizing significant anniversaries of ordination. As a sign of loyalty and obedience, the priests renew their commitment to their vocation and ministerial service, promising fidelity in fulfilling their office in the Church and to the bishop. In the Diocese of Calgary, the deacons similarly renew their commitment. The bishop asks the faithful of the Diocese to continue to support him, as well as the priests and deacons through their ongoing prayers and love.
According to the Early Church Fathers, the olive tree was an image of God, the Father. The fruits that sprout from that tree are seen as the image of God, the Son. The image of God, the Holy Spirit is the oil that flows out in every direction as the purest extract of both the tree and the fruit.
In earlier times, oil was used in cooking, particularly in the making of bread, as a fuel for lamps, and as a healing agent in medicine. Moreover, the Jews anointed the head of a guest with oil as a sign of welcome. Oil beautified one’s appearance, and oil was used to prepare a body for burial. When the Church uses the blessed oil in its sacramental celebrations, it represents the outward sign of the power of salvation, which comes from the Trinity. At the Chrism Mass, three different oils are prepared. Two are blessed and one is consecrated, following traditions that have existed from very early in the Church’s history.
The oil of the catechumens is used to anoint those to be baptized as a reminder of the ancient athletes who once fought in the arena with their bodies covered in oil so that their enemies were unable to grab hold and hurl them to the ground. The catechumens are anointed with this oil to remind them that the Christian life is full of struggle, most especially a struggle with Satan and sin.
The oil of the sick is prepared to fulfill the instruction from St. James who wrote, “Is there anyone sick among you? He should ask for the priests of the Church. They in turn are to pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. This prayer uttered in faith will reclaim the one who is ill, and the Lord will restore him to health. If he has committed any sins, forgiveness will be his” [Jas 5:14-15]. When administering the sacrament of the sick, the priest, anointing the forehead of the person, says, “Through this holy anointing, may the Lord in His love and mercy help you with the grace of the Holy Spirit,” and then anointing his hands, says, “May the Lord who frees you from sin, save you and raise you up.”
The Sacred Chrism is prepared in a special way. Chrism is a mixture of olive oil and balsam, an aromatic resin. In Old Testament times, the priest, prophets, and kings of the Jewish people were said to have been anointed. The biblical word for one who was anointed was Messiah. Translated into Greek, the language of the New Testament, Messiah becomes Christos, or Christ, who was anointed by the Holy Spirit. Being anointed means one is set apart, chosen, and directed to carry out the will of God. Therefore, this oil is used in the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, the ordination of priests and bishops, and the dedication of churches to set them apart for a special mission and purpose for God. During the consecration of the chrism the concelebrants at the Chrism Mass extend their right hands toward the chrism as the bishop says the consecratory prayer, signifying that in union with their bishop they share “in the authority by which Christ Himself builds up and sanctifies and rules His Body,” the Church [Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 1563].
At the end of the Chrism Mass, the oils that were blessed and the Chrism that was consecrated are distributed to representatives from every parish in the diocese for use in the celebration of the sacraments throughout the year. Individual parishes typically receive the holy oils in a procession at the beginning of the Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper later the same week.
In our spiritual journey, we have become joined to Christ through the celebration of the sacraments and are called, challenged, blessed, and anointed with the oils of gladness so that we too may become heralds of the good news by proclaiming glad tidings to the lowly, healing to the broken, liberty to those held captive, and comfort to the sorrowful.
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Calgary is honoured to welcome the Most Reverend Bishop William T. McGrattan as our eighth Bishop.
Bishop McGrattan was born in London, Ontario. His Excellency received his undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Western Ontario, followed by a Master of Divinity from St. Peter’s Seminary in London. Bishop McGrattan was ordained to the priesthood on May 2, 1987, with the Diocese of London. Following three years of service with St. Joseph’s Parish in Chatham, Bishop McGrattan continued his studies in theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, where he received a Licentiate in Fundamental Moral Theology in 1992. Bishop McGrattan served on the faculty of St. Peter’s Seminary in London as an associate professor, vice-rector, and dean of theology and was appointed as rector of the Seminary in 1997. He was ordained to the episcopate as Auxiliary Bishop of Toronto in 2009.
The Diocese is very much looking forward to celebrating Bishop McGrattan’s Installation Mass on Monday, February 27, 2017 at St. Mary’s Cathedral at 7:30 pm.
Special guests, including the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, have been invited to celebrate this special Mass alongside our own Diocesan Priests, Deacons, other Religious and members of the laity. We expect more than 1,000 people to be in attendance at this special occasion in our Diocese. We will also have a live stream over the internet through our Diocesan Website at www.calgarydiocese.ca. Please contact your parish as many are organizing viewing parties for the evening of February 27.
This is a ticketed event. Three hundred tickets were made available on the morning of February 7. The tickets were reserved in 30 minutes. The Diocese is carefully monitoring numbers to see if more tickets can be made available. The link below will be re-activated at that time.
Questions can be sent to INSTALLATION@CALGARYDIOCESE.CA.