Lenten Meditation  -  The Woman at the Well
In the story of the woman at the well, Jesus broke through the barriers of prejudice, hostility, and tradition to bring the good news of peace and reconciliation to Jews, Samaritans, and Gentiles alike. He demonstrated the universality of the gospel both in word and deed. No one is barred from the love of God and the good news of salvation. There is only one thing that can keep us from God and his redeeming love – our stubborn pride and wilful rebellion.

What is the point of Jesus’ exchange with the Samaritan woman about water?  The kind of water which Jesus spoke about was living, running, fresh, pure water. Fresh water from a cool running stream was always preferred to the still water one might find in a pool or reservoir. When the Israelites complained about lack of water in the wilderness, God instructed Moses to strike the rock and a stream of fresh living water gushed out (Exodus 17:6 ). Even though the Israelites did not trust God to care for them in the wilderness, God, nonetheless gave them abundant water and provision through the intercession of his servant Moses.

The image of "living water" is used throughout the scriptures as a symbol of God’s wisdom, a wisdom that imparts life and blessing to all who receive it. “The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life” (Proverbs 13:14).  "Living water" was also a symbol for the Jews in their thirst of the soul for God. The water which Jesus spoke of, symbolized the Holy Spirit and his work of recreating us in God’s image and sustaining in us the new life which comes from God. The life which the Holy Spirit produces in us makes us a "new creation" in Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).

Confirmation Meeting and Registration
The Confirmation meeting and registration will take place on Monday March 27 at 7:30. Our gathering will focus on an overview of the Sacrament of Confirmation. We would like parents/guardians and students to attend. The donation we are asking for this year is $50.00 to cover the cost of the student resources, the retreat and the gown rental.  **Please note that we require a copy of your child’s baptismal certificate at registration**

Offertory Envelopes & Tax Receipt
If you have not picked up your offertory envelopes and/or tax Receipts for the year 2016, please do so at your earliest convenience.  If you have moved and not informed the office please let us know, so we can up-date the information in our system. 

Mass and Stations of the Cross during Lent
Every Friday evening at 7 pm

I wish you all continued blessings in Lent!
                                                                                       Fr. Phil     

Second Sunday of Lent

What is the significance of this mysterious appearance? Jesus went to the mountain knowing full well what awaited him in Jerusalem - his betrayal, rejection and crucifixion. Jesus very likely discussed this momentous decision to go to the cross with Moses and Elijah. God the Father also spoke with Jesus and gave his approval: This is my beloved Son; listen to him. The Father glorified his son because he obeyed. 

The Lord Jesus not only wants us to see his glory - he wants to share this glory with us. And Jesus shows us the way to the Father's glory: follow me - obey my words - take the path I have chosen for you and you will receive the blessings of my Father's kingdom - your name will be written in heaven.

Jesus succeeded in his mission because he went to Calvary so that heaven would be restored to us once again. He embraced the cross to obtain the crown of glory that awaits each one of us, if we will follow in his footsteps.  As we will hear in the EXULTET at the Easter Vigil, heaven is wedded to earth.

Luke's Gospel account tells us that while Jesus was transfigured, Peter, James, and John were asleep (Luke 9:32)! Upon awakening they discovered Jesus in glory along with Moses and Elijah. How much do we miss of God's glory and action because we are asleep spiritually?  There are many things which can keep our minds asleep to the things of God: Mental lethargy and the "unexamined life" can keep us from thinking things through and facing our doubts and questions. The life of ease can also hinder us from considering the challenging or disturbing demands of Christ.  Prejudice can make us blind to something new the Lord may have for us. Even sorrow can be a block until we can see past it to the glory of God. Are you spiritually awake? Peter, James, and John were privileged witnesses of the glory of Christ. We, too, as disciples of Christ are called to be witnesses of his glory.  The Lord wants to reveal his glory to us, his beloved disciples. Do I seek his presence with faith and reverence? ( 2016 Servants of the Word)

EVERY FRIDAY DURING LENT – There is, in addition to the 8am Mass, a 7pm Mass followed by the Stations of the Cross. All are invited to attend Mass and pray the stations during Lent.

Parish Skating Party
In aid of our parish SHARELIFE Campaign 2017 – March 18th
The skating party will be held at Carmen Corbasson Arena, across the street, on MARCH 18. Ice time from 7:15 – 8:15. Then you are invited back to the hall for food and refreshments. We are asking that each person contribute $5.00 for this SHARELIFE fundraiser. There will be a donation box as you enter the rink area. This includes skating and after party. We are making every effort to reach our goal of $60,000 this year. Many people have told me that $5.00/person is too little for this event. Therefore, if you wish to contribute more than $5.00/person, you are, of course, welcome to do so. I hope you can attend this fun-filled family event for SHARELIFE.

Wishing you all a great week!
                                                                                       Fr. Phil   


Reflection for the First Sunday in Lent: Sin never shows itself in pure form—as raw evil. If it did, its ugliness would repulse us. Rather, it masks itself and hides under the guise of something good or attractive. This is how temptation works. The snake did not say, "Eat that fruit and you will be ashamed of yourselves and alienated from God." Rather it says, "You will be like gods." Now that's attractive! Satan came to the Lord Jesus in the same way, with apparent goods. You are hungry, make these stones bread; you are the Son of God, prove your trust in him; you could run the world. Jesus was tested in the same way that Israel was tested in the desert (see Deut 6-8). What distinguishes Jesus' response to the tempter from Adam and Eve's, or even ancient Israel's, is that he doesn't get lost in the apparent good, and he confronts seeming truth with real truth.
Jesus was tempted like us and he overcame sin not by his own human effort but by the grace and strength which his Father gave to him. He had to renounce his will for the will of his Father. He succeeded because he wanted to please his Father and he trusted that his Father would give him the strength to overcome the obstacles that stood in the way. Luke says that Jesus was "full of the Holy Spirit" (Luke 4:1). When tempted by the devil Jesus did not try to fight his adversary on his own human strength. He relied on the power which the Spirit gave him. Jesus came to overthrow the evil one who held us captive to sin and fear of death (Hebrews 2:14). His obedience to his Father's will and his willingness to embrace the cross reversed the curse of Adam's disobedience. His victory over sin and death won for us not only pardon for our sins but adoption as sons and daughters of God. Bread is not a substitute for God; you must not test God; you cannot trade obedience for power. To truly enter into the spirit of Lent is to grow in freedom, in discriminating wisdom, and in truth. It allows us to see through the cheap attractiveness of temptation and become inclined to the deeper truths that underlie our hearts' deepest, truest desires.
Meditation: What in my life attracts or tempts me to substitute truth for comfort, the status quo for conversion, apparent goods for the only true good in my life?
Prayer: Lord, it is so easy to be deceived. Give us wisdom to discern truth, and the courage to live that truth in our lives.
Additional Mass and Stations of the Cross:  Each Friday evening at 7 PM we will celebrate the Eucharist followed by the Stations of the Cross at 7:30 PM. This year we will pray the Stations of the Cross entitled: Everyone’s Way of the Cross. Copies will be available for you at the stations.  Please join us to celebrate the Eucharist and the Stations each Friday evening. 
Confirmation – Grade 7 – 2017
REGISTRATION  - Monday March 27th @7:30 in the hall. Please make sure that you have your child’s baptismal certificate at this meeting. This is required at the registration meeting.
PANCAKE WEEKEND – Many thanks to the Knights of Columbus and our ‘dream team’ ladies for all their hard work in making our pancake weekend such a success. I hope you had a great meal and some quality time with fellow parishioners. Thank-you to all those who were able to attend.

Our parish Sharelife campaign begins this weekend. Many thanks to our Chairs, David Bain and Irene Skinner-Bain and to all the people who signed up for the committee. We begin our campaign today with one of the 5 Sharelife videos.
Wishing you all a prayerful Lenten Season!              Fr. Phil