Articles

Stewardship Resources

Spirituality of Stewardship: Lenten Mission

During Lent of 2017, the Office of Stewardship presented Spirituality of Stewardship, a three-day Lenten Mission in the Diocese with Fr. Daryl Befort from Wichita, Kansas. The Lenten Mission focused on a threefold Call of Discipleship: Deny Youreslf, Take up Your Cross, and Follow Christ.

The True Meaning of Being a Steward of Christ

Catholic speaker, author, and stewardship coach Tracy Earl Welliver explains how we do not merely volunteer for Christ when we serve Him in different parish ministries, but that we give our lives to Christ by serving in the Church because we truly love Him. This talk series is entitled "The True Meaning of Being a Steward of Christ", conducted in the Diocese of Calgary on September 2016.

Disciple's Response

This resource contains discussion questions that can be used in small group study. The document helps individuals grasp with the heart the meaning of stewardship. I recommend that parish councils and stewardship committees (also prayer groups in the parish) work through the text once a week for 5 weeks with a 6th week for making an action plan. The stewardship office has hard copies available for $10.

Deus caritas est (God is Love). Pope Benedict XVI's first encyclical.

The theology and principles in this resource are a wonderful formation tool for stewardship spirituality. Part one offers a speculative reflection on love. Part two is a reflection on the meaning of charitable giving. The Stewardship Office has hard copies available for $5.

Exploring Deus Caritas Est

Exploring Deus Caritas Est is a 4-part process for small groups. Written by Anthony Garascia and published by Ave Maria Press, the study guides are available as free downloads. They are also included here for easy access by your parish groups:

Stewardship: 'Well done, good and faithful servant.'

A Pastoral Letter by Thomas Collins, Archbishop of Edmonton

This document is shorter than Disciple's Response but still offers some discussion questions at the end. It is a very good resource and introduction to stewardship. The stewardship office has hard copies available for $0.50 a piece.

Stewardship and Teens

Cardinal Mahoney, Archbishop of Los Angeles

The Little Burgundy Book: Six Minute Reflections.

The diocese of Saginaw, Michigan has published three out of four of these books, one for each Gospel, based upon the writings of the late bishop, Ken Untener. So far, they have Mark, Luke, and John available. Those who have used these books find them invaluable and an easy but significant way of bringing stewardship into the prayer-life of busy people.

There are a few copies available in the diocesan stewardship office.

Pray Always and Never Lose Heart: A Treasury of Private Prayers for the Christian Steward

National Catholic Stewardship Council, Inc. 1998.

This collection of private prayers is available at the Resource Centre library.

Copies are available for purchase at the stewardship office ($15).

Stewardship: Disciples Respond. A Practical Guide for Pastoral Leaders.

Catholic Stewardship Council, Inc. 1997, 2004.

This book is filled with ideas for implementing stewardship practices in your parish.

It is available at the Resource Centre library. Copies for purchase are available at the stewardship office ($10).

Related Offices Stewardship
Related Themes Stewardship Discipleship Giving Resources Christian Life

Holy Week Mass Times

Mass times in the Diocese of Calgary during Holy Week.

ParishCityLenten PenitentialPalm SundayHoly ThursdayGood FridayEaster VigilEaster Sunday
Ascension Calgary March 9th 7:30PM   8:00PM 12:00PM & 3:00PM At Notre Dame HS 8:30PM At Notre Dame HS 9:00AM & 11:00AM At Notre Dame HS
Canadian Martyrs Calgary April 4th 7:30pm   7:00PM 3:00PM (Syro Malabar Community Good Friday Liturgy: 10:30 PM) 8:30PM 10:00AM
CorpusChristi Calgary March 14th, 7:30PM Sat: 5:00PM, Sun: 9:00AM & 11:00AM 7:00PM ONLY 3:00PM ONLY 8:00PM ONLY 9:00AM & 11:00AM ONLY
Holy Name Calgary April 5 at 7:30pm April 8 at 5:00pm April 9 at 9:00am and 11:00am 7:00PM 3:00PM 9:00PM 9:00AM & 11:00PM
Holy Spirit Calgary March 14th, 7:30PM Saturday 5pm, 7:30pm (Spanish), Sunday 9:00am, 11:00am and 7:00pm (Sunday 11:30am at Our Lady of Peach Church) 8:00PM 12:00PM(In Spanish) & 3:00PM(In English) 9:00PM 6:00AM (Spanish), 9:00AM, 11:00AM and (11:30AM at Our Lady of Peace Church)
Holy Trinity Calgary            
Mary, Mother of the Redeemer Calgary   9:00AM (Italian), 11:00AM (Engilsh), 1:00PM & 6:00PM (Spanish) 5:00PM (Italian), 6:30PM (English), 8:00PM (Spanish) 10:00am: Way of the Cross 1:00pm (English) 3:00pm (Italian) 5:00pm (Spanish) 6:00pm (Italian) 8:00pm (English) 10:00pm (Spanish) 9:00am (Italian), 11:00am(English) & 1:00pm (Spanish)
Our Lady of Fatima Calgary            
Our Lady of M. Bistrica Calgary            
Our Lady of Perpetual Help Calgary     7:30PM 3:00PM 9:00PM  
Our Lady Queen of Peace Calgary            
Sacred Heart Calgary    7:30AM, 9:00AM, 11:00AM, 5:00PM  7:00PM  3:00PM 8:00PM  7:30AM, 9:00AM, 11:00AM, & 5:00PM
St. Albert the Great Calgary April 6th 7:30pm Saturday, April 8th 5:00pm, Sunday, April 9th 8:45am, 11:00am & 5:00pm 7:00PM 12:00PM & 3:00PM 8:30PM 9:00AM, 11:00AM & 1:00PM
St. Anne Korean Calgary            
St. Anthony Calgary     6:30PM 3:00PM 9:00PM  9:00AM and 10:30AM (English), 7:15AM and 12:30PM (Latin)
St. Bernadette Calgary April 5th, 7:00PM Saturday 5:00PM, Sunday 9:00AM & 10:30PM 7:00PM 3:00PM 9:00PM 9:00PM & 10:30PM
St. Bernard Calgary            
St. Bonaventure Calgary March 14th 7:30PM   9:00AM & 7:30PM 9:00AM, Noon & 3:00 PM 9:00AM, 10:00AM, 8:00PM 7:45AM, 9:00AM, 10:30AM & 12PM
St. Boniface Calgary            
St. Cecilia Calgary            
St. Elizabeth of Hungary Calgary            
St. Francis of Assisi Calgary            
St. Gerard Calgary            
St. James Calgary April 4th 7:30PM   7:00PM 3:00PM & 6:00PM 8:00PM ONLY 8:30AM, 10:00AM & 12:00PM
St. Joseph Calgary April 4, 2017 at 7:30 PM April 8 at 5PM, April 9 Sunday at 9AM, 11AM & 5PM. 7:00PM 12:00PM & 3:00PM 9:30PM 9:00AM, 11:00AM & 5:00PM
St. Luke Calgary April 5th   7:00PM 3:00PM & 6:00PM 9:00PM 8:30AM, 10:30AM, 12:30PM, 5:30PM & 7:30PM
St. Mark Calgary            
St. Mary's Cathedral Calgary            
St. Michael Calgary April 4th, 7:30PM   7:30PM 10:00AM & 3:00PM 8:00PM 9:00AM & 11:00AM ONLY
St. Patrick Calgary            
St. Peter Calgary            
St. Pius X Calgary March 29th, 7:30PM Saturday 5PM, Sunday 9AM, 11AM & 7PM 7:30PM 12:00 & 3:00PM 8:00PM 9:00AM & 11:00AM
St. Thomas Moore Calgary            
St. Vincent Liem Calgary            
Ste. Famille Calgary            
St. Paul Airdrie     7:00PM 3:00PM 9:30PM 9:00PM, 11:00AM & 7:00PM
St. Mary's Banff n/a n/a 7:00PM 3:00PM 8:00PM 9:00AM
Holy Trinity Blairmore            
St. Paul Brocket            
Our Lady of the Rockies Canmore     7:00PM 3:00PM 9:00PM 9:00AM & 11:00PM  
St. Gabriel the Archangel Chestermere            
Christ the King Claresholm            
Holy Trinity/St. Mary Cluny            
St.Ambrose/St.Catherine Coaldale St. Cath - March 16 7:00 pm St. Ambrose March 30 7:00 pm   St. Ambrose 6:00 pm, St. Catherine 8:00 pm  St. Ambrose 3:00 pm, St. Catherine 6 pm  St. Ambrose 9:30 pm  
St. Mary's Cachrane April 6th at 7PM Sat. April 8 at 5PM & Sun. April 9 at 10AM 7:00PM 3:00PM 9:30PM 10:00AM
St. Anthony Drunheller            
Holy Cross Fort Macleod            
St. George Hanna            
St. Francis de Sales High River 7:00PM   SFDS: 7:00PM & Vulcan: 7:00PM SFDS:3:00PM SFDS: 9:30PM SFDS: 11:00AM & Vulcan: 9:00AM
St. Martha Lethbridge April 5th at 7:00PM   7:00PM 3:00PM 8:00PM 9:00AM & 11:00AM
All Saints Lethbridge 10:00AM All Saints at Assumption   7:00PM Catholic Central High School East Campus. 3:00PM Catholic Central High School East Campus. 9:00PM 9:00AM & 11:00AM only
Holy Family Medicine Hat March 22nd 7:00PM Sat: 5:00PM Sun: 8:30AM, 10:30AM & 6:00PM 7:00PM 12:00PM & 3:00PM 8:00PM 9:00PM & 11:00AM
St. Patrick Medicine Hat March 29th, 7:00PM Sat Apr 8 5:00 pm Sunday April 9 9:00 am & 11:00 am 7:00PM 12:00PM & 3:00PM 8:00PM 9:00AM & 11:00AM
St. Peter Milk River March 24th 7:00PM          
St. James Okotoks April 4th at 7:00PM   7:00PM 3:00PM 9:00PM 9:00AM at St. Michael's & 11:00AM St. James
St. Catherine's Picture Buttee March 16th, 7:00PM          
St. Michael Pincher Creek     7:00PM 3:00PM 9:00PM 10:00AM
St. Rita/St.Mary's Beiseker Rockyford            
Immaculate Conception StandOff            
Sacred Heart Strathmore            
St. Augustine/St.Joseph Taber March 1st 9:00 am – Clearview Lodge - Taber 5:00 pm – St. Joseph’s – Vauxhall 7:00 pm – St. Augustine’s Taber   7:00PM at Both Parishes 9:00 am Cross Walk - Taber 3:00 pm Good Friday Services – at both St. Augustine’s and St. Joseph’s Taber/Vauxhall 9:30 pm - at both St. Augustine’s and St. Joseph’s Taber/Vauxhall 9:00 am at St. Augustine’s Church – Taber 11:00 am at St. Joseph’s Church - Vauxhall
St. Joseph's Vauxhall March 13 7:00PM          
Related Offices Office of Liturgy
Related Themes Lent

Project Rachel - Post Abortion Healing

Project Rachel is an ecumenical ministry of healing and reconciliation for people of all ages who are suffering distress from a past abortion experience.

The ministry was launched throughout southern Alberta in November 1998

Project Rachel is a sensitive, private and confidential program. We offer support to anyone, regardless of gender, age, or faith. Not only women who have had the abortion, but also men and family members who experience post-abortion grief are welcome to contact us. Our counsellors recognize abortion as a traumatic experience, and address its psychological and physical symptoms. In addition, they offer the unique opportunity to integrate spirituality into the healing process.

  • Teams of trained therapists or clergy are available to see clients on an individual basis. Our counselors are readily available; there are no long waiting times.
  • This is a confidential and ecumenical ministry.

For more information, click here

Project Rachel Brochure

Upcoming Events

Project Weekend Retreats are available. This is an opportunity to journey with others who are also seeking healing from a past abortion experience - under the guidance of two professional counselors. For more information or to register, contact the Project Rachel office at 403-218-5506 or (Toll Free) 1-877-597-3223 or email at info@projectrachelsa.ca

A Song For Rachel

'A Song For Rachel' is held annually as a fun-filled, family fundraising concert that has been established in 1999. A silent auction was added in 2003.

The next Song for Rachel concert will be held on April 27, 2018 at St. Michael's Parish, 800 - 85 St. SW, Calgary. The silent auction will open at 6:00 pm and the concert begins at 7:00 pm. The price is $15.00/person and $35.00/family.

Call now to reserve: 403-218-5505.

Contact us!

Related Websites

Related Offices Life & Family Resource Centre (LFRC) Related Programs Project Rachel
Related Themes Abortion Contraception Life Issues Prolife Family

Health Care Facilities

Priest Emergency Paging: 403-231-9505

Should you or your loved one need a priest in an Emergency Medical situation for sacraments such as:

  • Anointing of the Sick (Last Rites)
  • Reconciliation (Confession) or
  • Viaticum (Holy Communion for the dying);

Within the city of Calgary please call our
24 Hour Priest Emergency Paging System at (403) 231-9505
and ask to have the On Call Priest paged. For all other cities and rural areas, please click to view all facilities below.


Calgary Facilities

Hospitals

Children's Hospital, 288 Shaganappi Trail NW

Foothills Medical Centre, 1403 - 29 St NW

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Ephrem Kardouh (403) 205-0121 Pager
  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Michael Storey (403) 703-5407 Cell
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Peta Collings (403) 944-1681 Bus

Peter Lougheed Centre, 3500 - 26 Ave NE

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Stefan Ganowicz (403) 219-4415 Pager
  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Tewelde Paulos (403) 370-2089 Cell
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Wendie Pilkington (403) 943-4947 Bus

Rockyview General Hospital, 7007 - 14 St SW

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Terry Connolly (403) 219-4462 Pager
  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Tewelde Paulos (403) 370-2089 Cell
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Micheline Pare (403) 943-8750 Bus

South Health Campus Hospital, 4448 Front St. SE

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Clauber Lima (403) 796-7296 Cell
  • Roman Catholic Contact: Jack Teunissen

 

Nursing Homes in Calgary

Agecare Glenmore, 1729 - 90 Ave. SW

AgeCare LAKE MIDNAPORE, 500 MIDPARK WAY SE

  • Roman Catholic Contact: Rita Gerwing (403) 254-6878 Church (St. Patrick's)

AGECARE Walden Heights, 250 Walden Drive SW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: Rita Gerwing (403) 254-6878 Church (St. Patrick's)

Bethany Care Centre, 916 - 18A St NW

Bowcrest View Nursing Home, 5927 Bowness Rd NW (403) 288-2373 Bus

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Bernard's Parish (403) 283-3746

Bowview Manor, 4628 Montgomery Blvd NW (403) 288-4446 Bus

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Bernard's Parish (403) 283-3746 

Brentwood Nursing Home, 2727 - 16 Ave NW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Bernard's Parish (403) 283-3746

Care West - Colonel Belcher Care Centre, 1939 Veterans Way NW

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Nathan Siray
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Bernard's Parish (403) 283-3746

Care West - Glenmore Park, 6909 - 14 St. SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinators: Gill Fagnou (403) 258-7650 Bus

Care West - Royal Park, 4222 Sarcee Rd SW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: Catherine Peet (403) 243-2680 Bus

Care West - Signal Pointe (Dementia) 6363 Simcoe Rd SW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: Elaine Brackenbury (403) 249-7764 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: Holy Name Parish (403) 249-7764 

Cedars Villa, 3330 - 8 Ave SW

Chinook Care Centre, 1261 Glenmore Trail SW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Anthony's Parish (403) 252-1137

Clifton Manor

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Marie Muyers
  • Roman Catholic Contact: Holy Trinity Parish (403) 272-1258

Dr. Vernon Fanning Centre - Care West, 722 - 16 Ave NE (403) 230-6937 Bus

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Joseph's Parish (403) 289-2591
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Yvonne Hayne (403) 700-7470 Cell

Evergreen Manor, 2220 - 162 Ave SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Rosalie Cote Vandermeer (403) 254-6878 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact:  St. Patrick's Parish (403) 254-6878

Fr. Lacombe Nursing Home, 332 - 146 Ave SE

  • Site Pastoral Care Coordinator: Cassandra Coster (403) 254-6282 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Patrick's Parish (403)254-6878

Forest Grove Care Centre, 4726 - 8 Ave SE

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Mary Adele Nedelec (403) 272-1258 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact:  Holy Trinity Parish (403) 272-1258

Garrison Green - Care West (Garrison Green Seniors) 3108 Don Ethell Blvd SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Catherine Peet (403) 243-2680 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. James' Parish (403) 243-2680

George Boyack Nursing Home, 1203 Centre Ave NE

  • Roman Catholic Contact: Our Lady of Perpetual Help (403) 265-7926

Glenmore Park Auxiliary, 6909 - 14 St. S.W.

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Gil Fagnou (403) 258-7650 Bus

Holy Cross Manor, 70 Eveanspark Manor NW

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: De-Anne Richter: (587)230-7070 Bus (587) 230-2708 Direct Line

Mayfair Nursing Home, 824 Collicut St SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Mary Sylven (403) 252-5202 Bus

McKenzie Towne Care Centre, 80 Promenade Way SE

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Albert the Great Parish (403) 257-6053 Church

Millrise Place, 14911 - 5 St SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator:Rita Gerwing (403) 410-9155 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Patrick's Parish (403) 254-6878

Revera Evergreen, 2220 - 162 Avenue SW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Albert the Great Parish (403) 257-6053 Church

Royal Park - Care West, 4222 Sarcee Rd SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Catherine Peet (403) 243-2680 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. James' Parish (403) 243-2680 

Shawnessy Lodge, 30 Shannon Pl SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Rosalie Cote Vandermeeer (403) 254-6878 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Patrick's Parish (403) 254-6878

Southwood Care Centre, 211 Heritage Way SE

Spruce Lodge, 1055 Bow Valley Dr. NE

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Terry Connolly (403) 219-4462 Pager

Staywell Manor Village, 174 Ypres Green SW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. James Parish (403) 243-2680

St. Marguertie Manor, 110 Evanspark Manor NW

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: De-Anne Richter (587) 230-7070 Bus (587) 955-9788 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Caroline Johnson (403) 275-2240 Church

Trinity Lodge, 1111 Glenmore Trail SW

  • (403) 253-7576 Bus

Wentworth Court, 5717 - 14 Ave SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Yvonne Beaubien (403) 249-0423 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Nidia McIntosh (403) 280-8744 Res
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Michael's Parish (403) 249-0423

Wentworth Manor, 5709 - 14 Ave SW

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Yvonne Beaubien (403) 249-0423 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Nidia McIntosh (403) 280-8744 Res
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Michael's Parish (403) 249-0423

 

Hospices within Calgary

Agape Hospice, 1303 - 8 Ave NW (403) 202-6588 Bus

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Joseph's Parish (403) 289-2591

Chinook Hospice, 1261 Glenmore Trail SW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Anthony's Parish (403) 252-1137

Dulcina Hospice, 110 Evanspark Manor NW

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Giovanni Di Vincenzo (587) 230-5639 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Caroline Johnson (403) 275-2240 Church

Rosedale Hospice, 920 - 7A St NW

  • Site Chaplin: Darrin Parkin (403) 289-5195 EXT. 332
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Joseph's Parish (403) 289-2591

Sarcee Hospice -  Care West, 3504 Sarcee Rd SW

  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. James Parish (403) 243-2680

Southwood Hospice, 211 Heritage Dr SE

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator:  Freda Abday (403) 252-2790 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Cecilia's Parish (403) 252-2790

 


Health Care Facilities Outside Calgary

 

LETHBRIDGE

Lethbridge Regional Hospital, 960 - 19 Ave South, Lethbridge

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Alphonse Narisetty (403) 952-7581 Cell
  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Annella Wehlage (403) 388-6024 Bus

St. Michael's Health Centre, 1400 - 9 Ave South, Lethbridge

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Alphonse Narisetty (403) 952-7581 Cell

St. Therese Villa, 253 Soughgate Blvd, Lethbridge

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator:  Sr. Josephine Keyzer (403) 332-5300 Bus

MEDICINE HAT

Medicine Hat Regional Hospital

  •  Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Francis Tran (403) 977-4656 Cell 

St. Joseph's Home for the Aged

  • Roman Catholic Chaplain: Fr. Francis Tran (403) 977-4656 Cell

BLACK DIAMOND

High Country Lodge Retirement Home, 707 Government Road, Black Diamond

  • Roman Catholic Coodinator: Barbara Zimmer, (403) 933-4697 Home
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. James Church, Okotoks (403) 938-3122

Oilfields General Hospital, 717 Government Road, Black Diamond

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Barbara Zimmer, (403) 933-4687 Home, (403) 933-2222 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. James Church, Okotoks (403) 938-3122

Rising Sun Nursing Home, 717 Government Road, Black Diamond

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Barbara Zimmer, (403) 933-4697 Home
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. James Parish, Okotoks (403) 938-3122

BANFF

Mineral Springs Hospital, Banff

  • Roman Catholic Hospital Contact: St. Mary's Parish (403) 762-2603

CANMORE

Canmore Hospital, 1100 Hospital Place

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Margaret Bleakney (403) 678-5536 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: Sacred Heart Parish (403) 678-5022

COCHRANE

Big Hill Lodge, 98 Carolina Dr

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator:  Margaret Ellenbroek (403) 932-6422 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Mary's Parish (403) 932-2944

Bethany Care Centre, 302 Quigley Dr.

  • Roman Catholic Coordinator: Martha Stocker (403)932-6422

HIGH RIVER

High River Hospital, 560 9 Ave SW, High River

  • Roman Catholic Site Chaplain: Virginia Battiste
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. Francis de Sales Parish (403) 652-2203
  • Roman Catholic Contact: Luella Wojcik (403) 652-7291

Medicine Tree Manor, 815, 9 Street SW, High River

  • Roman Catholic Contact: Luella Wojcik (403) 652-7291

OKOTOKS

Foothills Country Hospice

  • Roman Catholic Contact: Ron Nelson (403) 938-3122 Bus
  • Roman Catholic Contact: St. James' Parish (403) 938-3122
Related Offices Health Care
Related Themes Health Care Confession Death and Dying Annointing of the Sick

The Most Humbling Act

Mandatum novum do vobis: I give you a new commandment.– John 13:34

One of my favourite words is Maundy. Growing up I never knew what Maundy Thursday meant. I just knew that it was a pretty serious time during Easter. For a while I used the word interchangeably with maudlin, and came to think of the maundies as relating to sadness and gloom. So it was with some surprise that I eventually learned that it meant commandment, from the Old French mandé, and from the Latin, mandatum. Its connection to church practice comes from Christ’s own words: “Mandātum novum dō vōbīs,” or “I give you a new commandment.”

We celebrate Maundy Thursday during Holy Week, during the Mass of the Lord’s Supper. It was there that Jesus washed the feet of his disciples. You will remember the dramatic retelling of this episode in John 13 when Jesus not only identifies Judas as his betrayer, but also humbles himself to wash the feet of his disciples. Peter appears to bristle at the intent, but Jesus explains: “If I do not wash you, you can have nothing in common with me.” The point of the gesture, and one that Jesus insists on, is that this is a moment of communion with the other that must be passed on through all our relationships. “I have given you an example so that you may copy what I have done to you.”

The obvious contemporary parallel to this behavior has been modeled by Pope Francis, who time and again has chosen to wash the feet of the other, first at a youth detention centre, then prisoners and then women. More than his decision to live outside the Papal palace or to eschew luxury vehicles, the Pope’s washing of the feet is a deeply symbolic connection to Christ’s demonstrated ministry. It is also an example of servant leadership, where the most humbling act brings the highest and lowest to the place of common bond where God first placed us.

It is perhaps because of this that Maundy Thursday matters so much, but also that we need to move past the bristling that Peter showed, especially when we look at those who are not like us: the outsider, the marginal, the struggling and the lost. Our need to look beyond formal rules and regulations and reach out, despite whatever fear or strangeness separates us, is not only important, but mandated. Christ did not come to make us comfortable; he came to make us grow. So when He calls, who are we to turn away?


The Carillon

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.

Related Offices Carillon
Related Themes Lent Catholic Education
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