In the reflection for Corpus Christi, Mark McCormick speaks of service:
The Body and Blood of Christ, June 19, 2022
In my younger years, when I was full of zeal, just aching to discover my mission in life, I was accompanied by a spiritual director who encouraged me to discover God’s call by opening the Bible at random, and incorporating whatever lesson or command my finger happened to land upon.
It so happened, on this one occasion, that my finger landed upon Psalm 110 at the exact refrain of the psalm- “You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek” Well, like many a dutiful Catholic boy of the time, I had dreams of becoming a priest, so I received this as a thunderbolt from on-high, and took this as divine confirmation of my call.
I don’t remember which lesson or command I received next time I opened the Bible at random – but needless to say I did not go on to become a priest. Yet, the memory of this one occasion stuck, and if I was not to become a priest, I did discern a call to be priestly. – in the most generic sense of the term- to help others, and to encourage them to believe. I became a teacher!
Perhaps the disciples in the Gospel today felt similarly to me – as they watched Jesus speaking to the crowds about the Kingdom of God and as they witnessed Him healing those who needed cures. No, they realized, they could not be Him, but they certainly were full of zeal to be like him.
Indeed Jesus, who had just recently taken on this motley crew of fishers and tax collectors, encouraged them to follow his lead. “You”, he told them, “give them something to eat, now that they are tired and the day is drawing to a close.”
“But how”, they told him, “with 5000 people to feed, and only five loaves and two fishes, how are we to feed them?”
A good question indeed, for their times, and ours today as well…
Jesus responded with words and calls to action, in ways that community leaders have emulated ever since. “Can we divide this crowd into smaller groups of about 50 each? Then, they can sit down and chat among themselves, discover one another, while we prepare.”
Jesus then blessed the loaves and fishes, along with the people gathered before him. He looked to heaven, broke the food set before Him into pieces, and all were then fed and were filled.
The disciples would recall these words and actions a few short years later at the Supper before Passover when Jesus again took bread, blessed it, broke it and shared it with them, saying, “Do this in remembrance of me”.
A few weeks ago Father Jim spoke to us on Ascension Sunday about the two monks who set out to find the one hidden place on earth where heaven and earth touch. After an arduous journey they found that gated place and knocked, only to find the open door of their own monastery. If the location where heaven and earth meet is where God has placed us today, the exact moment in time that this happens we will experience soon, when we receive the Body of Christ.
In the Eucharist- we experience the precise moment where heaven and earth meet- Jesus with us and in us. This is surely why we are strengthened in the act of communion.
And strength for the journey is what we need. Like the disciples, we recognize our inability to feed 5000 with five loaves and two fishes. We cannot be Jesus, but we can certainly be like Jesus and model our life after him.
The drama of that day 2,000 years ago when bread was taken, blessed, broken and shared serves as model for the passion that Jesus would undergo – his destiny was yet to be fulfilled. This is our model too, as we in our smaller ways live out our passion.
We have been taken by Jesus, chosen to fulfill a mission unique to ourselves in service to one another.
At varying points in our lives we are blessed and confirmed in our mission, by one another and literally by God through the sacraments.
We too are broken through the vagaries of life and in the trials that we must face as part of life. And we depend on the love and service of one another to help us heal and put us back together again.
Most importantly, we are meant to share our gifts with one another in our small groupings of community. It is an ongoing journey of service that we take up from those who came before us.
In his recently published book, “Bytown 1847, Elisabeth Bruyere and the Irish Famine Refugees” written by parishioner Michael McBane, we learn about the visionary model of service and care that was established by Elizabeth Bruyere and her community of sisters through the establishment of a temporary hospital to care for the sick, the foundations of which became the Ottawa General Hospital and Bruyere Continuing Care.
World Refugee Day will be celebrated tomorrow, on June 20th. Did you know that St Joe’s Refugee Outreach Committee (ROC) is one of Ottawa’s longest-serving, volunteer-run outreach groups? Tomorrow will launch the publication of the book “Ordinary People, Extraordinary Actions- Refuge Through Action at Ottawa’s St Joe’s Parish”, which chronicles their ongoing journey of service to others in need.
These examples of service inspire us to contribute according to our gifts and capacity, with Jesus as our model and guide.
In my older years now, I may be a mite less zealous, but am still eager to uncover my ongoing mission in community. As I, and as we, receive the body of Christ in the Eucharist, may we feel deep inside ourselves the moment of communion with Jesus, the place where heaven and earth meet and the place where we are strengthened and consoled for the journey ahead.
We are asking for donations of individual school supplies and/or school bags filled with supplies for students in either elementary or high school. We are requesting that the school supplies be dropped off no later than Friday August 12th, 2022.
For drop-offs at the Women’s Centre, our hours are from Monday to Friday, 9:30 am to 3:30 pm. You also have the option of leaving the school supplies at the front desk of the Parish Office.
School Supplies Needed:
- School Bags (Elementary & High School)
- Lunch Bags
- Pencil Cases
- Pencil Crayons
- Glue Sticks
- Loose-Leaf Paper
- 3-Ring Binders
- Scientific Calculators
- French/English Dictionaries
- * Staples Gift Cards
Did you know?:
St. Joe’s Women’s Centre has a wonderful partnership with Staples! Each dollar donated (monetary or gift card) is approximately doubled!!
For more information please contact:
Jane Tenthorey, Program Coordinator,
St. Joe’s Women’s Centre.
613-231-6722 or [email protected]
Thank you very much for all your support!
New Children’s Choir and a New Staff Member
St Joe’s is happy to announce the launch of a new children’s choir program! Starting September 2022, all children ages 6 to 15 are invited to join the choir. No experience necessary! Fun-filled rehearsals will take place weekly after the 9:30am mass, and the choir will perform during 9:30am mass one Sunday per month.
The choir will be directed by Andrea MacWilliams who completed her Bachelor of Music in Composition at the University of Ottawa in 2017. In addition to her participation in St. Joe’s Music Ministry since 2012, she has sought choral leadership opportunities with positions such as Assistant Conductor of the Ottawa Catholic School Board children’s choirs and Apprentice Conductor of the Capital Chamber Choir. She is delighted to join the staff at St. Joe’s as Associate Music Director, to launch the brand new Children’s Choir in September 2022, and to continue developing the Young Adult Music Ministry at the University Mass. Reach out to her at [email protected] to ask questions or get involved.
Refugee Outreach Commeitte: Official Book Launch Invitation for Ordinary People Extraordinary Actions
Location: Outdoors on the Tabaret Lawn (555 Cumberland Street, Ottawa)
St. Joseph’s Refugee Outreach Committee (the ROC) is one of Ottawa’s longest-serving, volunteer-run refugee outreach groups. Since 1990, this group of dedicated volunteers has helped to welcome and support hundreds of newcomers and refugees in the city.
This event will honour the ROC’s impressive 30+ years of history, and prompt a larger conversation about how we can all get involved in welcoming refugees in pressing and meaningful ways today. It will also mark the launch of the book Ordinary People, Extraordinary Actions, which relates stories about how “ordinary people” in Ottawa, and particularly at St. Joseph’s Parish, have taken small and big steps to welcome people seeking refuge into their communities (see publishing details).
Formalities will run from approximately 2:30-3:15pm. This event will include brief remarks from:
- Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa
- Jacques Frémont, President of the University of Ottawa
- Louisa Taylor, Director of Refugee613
- Past and current members of the ROC
- Past newcomers with a connection to the ROC
- The authors of the book Ordinary People, Extraordinary Actions: Refuge Through Activism at Ottawa’s St. Joe’s Parish
All are invited! Come learn about Ottawa’s rich refugee history and about how to get involved.
For any questions concerning this event, please email [email protected].
YOUNG FAMILIES LOOKING TO SUPPORT ONE ANOTHER
Young families in our parish are hoping to get to know one another. Over the past 2 years many young families have not been able to attend in person events at St Joe’s for many reasons. People are talking about moving forward together and would like to meet other families. If you are interested in meeting other young families, please contact Kathleen Strader at [email protected] and leave your name and contact information with her.
Friday Evening Meditation
The Last two sessions before the summer break will be held on the 17th and 24th of June returning September 9. If you have any question, please contact Beth Smith at [email protected].
Offering for Sunday May 31, 2022: $4665
June 19, 2022 – Looking for something different to read this summer? St. Joe’s Library has over 3,000 titles covering church history, scripture, prayer, spirituality, books about Jesus, the saints and much more. The Library, located in the Sacristy, is open Mon to Fri 8:30 – 4:30, Sundays 10:30 – 1:00. Borrowing is on a self-serve basis, with a one month loan period. Use the Circulation binder in the Library to sign out books. The collection can easily be searched by Author, Title and Subject through the printed or online Catalogue.
Monday Christian Meditation Sessions have resumed in person at 9:30am in the Sacristy Library.
Wednesday Christian Meditation Sessions have resumed in person at 3pm in the Main Floor Meeting room. Please contact Chaplain Rick at 613-265-1652 for more information.
Friday Christian Meditation Sessions have resumed in person at 7pm in the Oblate Lounge. Please contact Beth at [email protected] for more information.
Volunteers Needed — English Conversation Circle
The English Conversation Group enables participants to have a one on one conversation with a volunteer who speaks English fluently. The Group’s goal is to enable English language skills to be improved in a supportive , friendly and enjoyable way. We hold Zoom and in person sessions each Wednesday from 7pm to 8:30 pm. We welcome any parishioners who would like to be a volunteer or a participant.
For further info contact [email protected]
Pastoral Volunteers wanted: Garry J. Armstrong Home, 200 Island Lodge Rd
The pandemic is slowing down, and our residents are looking forward to returning to some sense of normalcy. We are looking for Pastoral Volunteers that would be interested in visiting our Roman Catholic residents and enrich their spirituality.
Join our volunteer team here at Garry J. Armstrong Home and help make a difference in the lives of the residents! Orientation/training opportunities will be provided. Please contact Julien Roberge at 613 580 2424 ext. 22950 or [email protected] for more information.
Celebrating Indigenous Peoples:
It is important to recognize there are three different days in the secular and faith calendar to celebrate and remember Indigenous Peoples in Canada. To commemorate National Indigenous Peoples’ Day (June 21st) in Canada, we encourage parishes to remember Indigenous Peoples and highlight opportunities in the local community for parishioners to join in Indigenous-led initiatives and events to celebrate this day. June 21st is “National Indigenous Peoples Day” in Canada. This is a secular day and not part of the liturgical calendar, but parishes are encouraged to pray for the Indigenous Peoples of Canada in their daily Mass. You might wish to add a special petition in the Prayers of the Faithful such as “May the Indigenous Peoples in Canada experience God’s tender care and may we walk with our sisters and brothers in truth, healing and reconciliation, we pray to the Lord.” September 30th is the “National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.” The Catholic Church in Canada celebrates the “National Day of Prayer in Solidarity with Indigenous Peoples” on December 12th, the feast day of Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the Americas.
Ottawa-Cornwall Diocesan Council for Development and Peace – Caritas Canada Annual General Meeting:
This is a unique opportunity to learn about the local and global work of DPCC, to socialize with Development & Peace membership, and to have your say in DPCC’s democratic process. The new executive director of DPCC, Carl Hétu, will give the keynote address. Option to participate online by registering here (confirmation email will contain info about joining the meeting): https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZErdeypqTwtE9Y0GH3MlIzWq3nSDLKyCX1Y. Holy Canadian Martyrs Parish, 100 Main St, Ottawa, June 23, 6:00 pm. Info: [email protected].
If you have questions or require, 2021 Tax Receipts, 2022 Church Envelopes, or 2022 Missals, [please contact the Front Office at 613-233-4095 or [email protected].
Mass intentions are available on Wed., Thur., and Fri. during Noon Mass for a $15.00 donation. Please notify the Front Desk, [email protected] for arrangements. Thank you!
Wed. June 22nd, 2022: available
Thur. June 23rd 2022: available
Fri. June 24th 2022: available
To add a name to the prayers for Sick or those who have died: Email Kathleen in the Front Office, [email protected]. We pray for those who are listed during the Prayers of the Faithful.
Prayers for those who are ill:
Prayers for those who have died: Huges Jean, Cyril Winters, Dan Handfield, Dr Kwesi Baffoe,
Please contact Kathleen in the Front office ([email protected]) for questions, bulletin submissions or to add a name to the prayers for the sick & deceased.