St. Philip Parish and St. Clare Mission https://www.stphilips-church.com Serving the Catholic communities of Richmond and Dwyer Hill, Ontario, and surrounding areas since 1819 Wed, 23 Sep 2020 01:52:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 138624500 Bulletin-September 27, 2020 https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/24/bulletin-september-27-2020/ Thu, 24 Sep 2020 18:39:00 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=5187 Here is the bulletin for September 27, 2020

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Here is the bulletin for September 27, 2020

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Live-Stream of Masses- Fundraising Appeal to Purchase Equipment https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/22/live-stream-of-masses-fundraising-appeal-to-purchase-equipment/ Tue, 22 Sep 2020 12:32:37 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=5173
Click Here for More Details of this Exciting Project!
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Click Here for More Details of this Exciting Project!
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Register to Attend Masses September 26 & 27 and September 28 & 29 https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/21/register-to-attend-masses-august-15-16-and-17-18/ Mon, 21 Sep 2020 13:00:00 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=4905 For the next number of weeks, in order to keep to the limits identified by the province, we are asking parishioners to register for the mass of your choice by clicking the Mass time below. Please feel free to share this information. One registration can be done per family – just indicate the number of seats you will need (include babies and children who will attend with you). We regret that once all the seats are spoken for, we cannot make more seats available. Click on the following links to the Mass of your choice:

4:30 pm Saturday September 26, (St Philips)

9am Sunday September 27, (St Clares) – Click this link to find out how to register.

10:30am Sunday September 27, (St Philips)

12:30pm Sunday September 27, St Philips – Charismatic Mass with the Lift Jesus Higher Community – Register at the door – First come, first seated

7pm Monday September 28 – Register at the door – First come, first seated

7pm Tuesday September 29 (St Clares) – Register at the door – First come, first seated

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For the next number of weeks, in order to keep to the limits identified by the province, we are asking parishioners to register for the mass of your choice by clicking the Mass time below. Please feel free to share this information. One registration can be done per family – just indicate the number of seats you will need (include babies and children who will attend with you). We regret that once all the seats are spoken for, we cannot make more seats available. Click on the following links to the Mass of your choice:

4:30 pm Saturday September 26, (St Philips)

9am Sunday September 27, (St Clares) – Click this link to find out how to register.

10:30am Sunday September 27, (St Philips)

12:30pm Sunday September 27, St Philips – Charismatic Mass with the Lift Jesus Higher Community – Register at the door – First come, first seated

7pm Monday September 28 – Register at the door – First come, first seated

7pm Tuesday September 29 (St Clares) – Register at the door – First come, first seated

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Fr. Bob’s Homily for Sunday, September 20, 2020 https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/20/fr-bobs-homily-for-sunday-september-20-2020/ Sun, 20 Sep 2020 12:17:46 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=5032 What a friend we have in Jesus!

In the northern part of London, England, where I had my first parish experience, there was a strong Irish population. In one of the towns there, it was customary for these Irish men to turn up in the main square early in the morning, waiting to be offered jobs by the construction companies that drove by, looking for labourers. The scene was not unlike that described in our gospel parable today.Since the work was hard and often required a great deal of strength and agility, digging, climbing up scaffolding whilst holding on to your tools and other equipment, obviously the people most often chosen from the line up were those who fit the bill. The weaker, less agile, and older men were usually turned away.

Without a doubt, if those men chosen first, who had worked hard all day, discovered as they turned up at the end of the day to get their wages, that other men had also been employed for fewer hours and less onerous duties and been given the same wages as they, there would have been severe ructions and the construction company would have found fewer men willing to be employed by them the next day. In these days of unions, shop stewards and workers’ right , that company would have gone out of business very quickly.

But in Jesus’ day, there was no such thing as unions and bargaining rights. Nor was there any welfare, so if you didn’t work, you didn’t eat, nor did your family. Which meant the landowner called the shots. He could lay down whatever terms of employment he wanted. If you didn’t like it, there was no union nor court you could take the matter to. It was either work, whatever the conditions, or starve, and see your family starve. Like it or lump it, as we would say in England. Clearly, Jesus well knew the conditions facing his fellow Jews at the hands of the rich and powerful members of society, and of the Roman occupying power. He moved among them in his itinerant ministry, his father had been a carpenter, which was a catch-all term for many construction skills, and Jesus himself, of course, had worked as a carpenter alongside his father, until he was 30. Many of his disciples were laborers, rather than management or owners, they were at the bottom of the ladder, not at the top. The situation Jesus described was one with which many of his followers could identify.

Jesus, in his parable of the workers in the vineyard, is not endorsing the unjust situation faced by the workers in the vineyard, not at all. He is focusing on just one aspect of the situation that he wanted his disciples to concentrate on and imitate. He states it quite clearly at the end of the parable: “The last will be first, and the first will be last.” Jesus actually quotes that statement earlier in the gospel (19:30) when he describes who will be counted worthy to become his disciple. The first will be last, and the last will be first . But now the parable describes what life will be like in the kingdom of heaven. Who will be the first to be welcomed into heaven? Not the strong, nor the rich, nor the people of influence . . . this would be astounding to many of Jesus’ hearers. They had been brought up to believe that it was precisely those classes of people who were blessed by God, so obviously they would have the front places in heaven. Why did they believe this? Because the rich and the powerful, and the men of influence of their day, which included their spiritual leaders and betters, such as the scribes and Pharisees, told them so. They also believed that the weak, the poor, the disadvantaged, the disabled, the defective in any way, including the tax collectors and the prostitutes, would be lucky to scrape into heaven at the judgement on the last day. As for the pagans, the Gentiles, forget it. God had no time or interest in what happened to them.

So when Jesus says that, in the kingdom of heaven, the people considered the least, the pathetic, the marginalized, would in fact have a better chance of getting in than the obvious candidates, the rich and powerful elites, including the scribes and Pharisees, he would have caused a sensation among his listeners. They would not have believed their ears, and that would have included the scribes and Pharisees among the crowds listening to Jesus’ words. They would have been scandalized. No wonder they wanted to kill him, or have him killed. He was fomenting revolution! He was turning their world upside down! Whereas the disciples of Jesus, which included the poorest, the weakest, the ordinary working class, would have been astonished but also delighted. Having been told by their religious leaders, over and over again, that they didn’t really count in God’s eyes as worthy of a place in his kingdom, here was Jesus, a man respected and admired by all kinds of people, and clearly one who knew God very well, telling them that what their religious leaders had been saying to them was all baloney, nonsense, not the way that life in heaven was at all. Not only that, but even the pagans, even the Romans, would be coming into the kingdom of heaven as well as they. And since most of us, before we became Christian, were pagan, i.e not Jewish, that is good news for us . What a friend we have in Jesus.

We are Church, brothers and sisters. Church is not the building, it is the community, you and I. The Church is, or should be, the best example of what life in the kingdom of heaven is all about. Those looking in on us from outside, should be able to see from the way we treat outsiders, the weak, the poor, those who do not fit in anywhere else , the marginalized, disabled, and so on, that there is a home and a welcome for everyone, no matter their race, their colour, their social and economic background, their weaknesses. That will encourage them to feel that there could also be a place for themselves as well. That is the best and most effective way to evangelize, by the way we live with others, including the misfits, how we behave towards one another, including the ones who irritate us the most. “See how those Christians love one another and also love others, who are not Christian” should be what they say about us. And if Jesus is the reason why we behave in such a loving way, won’t those looking in also be able to say: “What a friend we have in Jesus?” Can we say that this is true about our parish community , brothers and sisters? If not, why not?

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Fundraising Appeal to Purchase Equipment to ‘Live-Stream’ Masses https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/19/fundraising-appeal-to-purchase-equipment-to-live-stream-masses/ Sat, 19 Sep 2020 19:10:00 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=5011 Friends, our parish finds itself in the situation where we need some equipment in order to ‘Live-Stream’ Masses online. Read the Story here! The need has never been greater for our parish community to gather to celebrate Mass … and until COVID-19 is eradicated, the streaming of on-line Mass is the solution to bring us all together. We are fundraising to purchase the equipment to do just that. We need 81 people to donate $50 each; will you consider helping? We also need people to be a part of our ‘Mass-Streaming Ministry’ – training will be provided (and this new equipment will make it simple for anyone to do!).

Click here for more information on how to donate and volunteer.

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Bulletin of September 20, 2020 https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/19/bulletin-of-september-20-2020/ Sat, 19 Sep 2020 17:26:00 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=5008 Happy Fall Everyone! Here is the Bulletin of September 20, 2020 … with some exciting news to share! Remember to join in on our online Mass … which will be posted at 10:30am on Sunday. Many thanks to Pat and Tom who are so generously donating their time to video the Masses.

Happy Fall first day of Autumn quote
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Happy Fall Everyone! Here is the Bulletin of September 20, 2020 … with some exciting news to share! Remember to join in on our online Mass … which will be posted at 10:30am on Sunday. Many thanks to Pat and Tom who are so generously donating their time to video the Masses.

Happy Fall first day of Autumn quote
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Join Us (Again) for Sunday Masses Online! https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/14/join-us-again-for-sunday-masses-online/ Tue, 15 Sep 2020 01:00:48 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=5000 Well, after a summer hiatus, the parishes’ volunteer video production crew is rested and ready to begin another “season” of recording Sunday Mass from St. Philip Church and bringing it to the parish community (and beyond!) via the magic of YouTube and the Internet!

The recording of Sunday Mass from St. Philip Church and streaming it online will resume starting Sunday, September 20, 2020.

A link to the recorded Mass will be available right here on the website by Sunday, 10:30am. You can also view the Mass through the YouTube app on your tablet, mobile phone (Android, iPhone, etc.) or on your smart TV and visiting the parishes’ YouTube channel.

Please note that the Sunday Mass is available online for a limited time only. So be sure to tune in Sunday mornings to participate in Mass, brought to you from St. Philip Church in Richmond.

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Fr. Bob’s Homily for Sunday, September 13, 2020 https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/11/fr-bobs-homily-for-sunday-september-13-2020/ Sat, 12 Sep 2020 00:00:12 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=4991 The story is told of two tribes in medieval Scotland who were always feuding, the Kildares and the MacDuffs. One day, a gang of the Kildare tribe came across a smaller group of MacDuffs, and chased after them, intending to set about them and kill them. The MacDuffs managed to reach the sanctuary of a local church and ran inside, slamming and locking the door behind them. The Kildares surrounded the church, intent on waiting it out until the MacDuffs would be forced by starvation to come out. A couple of hours later, a chieftain of the Kildare tribe came upon the scene and took it in. He, being a religious man, thought it a terrible thing to be fighting on holy ground. So he called into the MacDuffs, telling them to come out and promising not to harm them. Of course, they stayed inside the church, not believing for a moment the chieftain’s promises. Finally, he ordered his men to make a small hole in the wall of the church and he stuck his arm in through the wall in an offer of friendship and trust. After what seemed an eternity, one of the MacDuffs took hold of the proffered arm and shook it. Then they opened the door and came out and the two tribes reconciled.

You can imagine the scene, I’m sure. The risk that the Kildare chief took in putting his arm through the hole, when it could have been chopped off by a MacDuff sword. And the risk that the MacDuff took in shaking the hand of his enemy and the risk taken by all the MacDuffs in coming out of the church. This story, whether true or not, is the basis for the old saying “to chance your arm”, meaning to take a risk.When we begin a new job, or start up a new venture, or invest our savings, or ask someone to marry us, or agree to surgery , we are “chancing our arm”, for there is an element of risk in all these situations: things may or may not go well for us. I am sure, during the recent coronavirus scare, we have had to “chance our arm” to a certain extent. Even coming here to Mass has involved us in a certain risk, despite all the precautions we and you have taken to minimize the risk. Nothing is certain, of course , but we have decided to take the risk out of love for God and the Mass, trusting in God that He will honour our “chancing of the arm” and protect us from infection. But in all situations where we are required to take a risk, if someone does not step up and chance their arm, we are left stuck, paralyzed by fear and uncertainty, there is no movement forward , no opportunity for a growth in character, no new discovery to be made. We took a risk in opening up the church again for Mass; you took a risk in coming out from the safety of your own home to come to Mass. We are recovering our sense of community, of normality, of hope.

Nowhere is the need to “chance our arm” more evident than when it comes to reconciliation between two people where hurt has been caused and offence taken. Indeed, there is risk that needs to be taken on both sides. The one who caused the hurt or offence has to go to the other and ask forgiveness. This can be a significant blow to one’s pride, a humbling and sense of shame. The one who was hurt has to take the risk of forgiving, and abandoning their right to hold onto their anger and sense of betrayal. Sometimes the matter is not so clear cut. It may be that both parties feel they are the ones offended against- there may be wrong on both sides. But unless one or the other decides to “chance their arm”, and stretch out their arm in an offer of reconciliation, both sides are stuck in their anger and unforgiveness and both are the poorer for it , in terms of moral character and courage. And their families and communities are the poorer for it, because of the unhealed crack in relationships that continues .

I remember years ago telling a lie to a friend of mine, and he believed me. Even though years had passed and we had drifted apart, with me being here in Canada, and he remaining in England, I was often troubled by the shadow on our relationship caused by my betrayal of him. I tried to pretend it was no big thing, that it should be left in the past, but the trouble was that God would not leave it there, knowing it was a poison to my heart, and he nagged away at me through my conscience to own up to my sin and confess to my friend. For a long while, my pride and my shame got the better of me, then at last I could not bear it anymore and I decided I had to do something about it. My soul shrank from speaking to him by phone, or in person on one of my trips back to England. Then I remembered the blessed invention of the internet, and wrote an email to him, confessing my fault and asking for his forgiveness. I went to bed that night, somewhat relieved. But of course, the next day I had to face up to going to my computer and wondering if my friend hadreceived the email and how he would respond. Finally, after a few days , he did respond with great graciousness, saying he was disappointed that I had lied to him, but he did forgive me and was willing to leave the whole incident in the past . Wow what a relief, I had regained my friend, but also I had humbled my pride, and removed the shadow between us, and between me and God. I had stepped up to the plate and chanced my arm, and been rewarded. I could have stayed safe and alone with my sin, but I would not have known a moment’s peace, I am sure, So long as I wanted to stay in relationship with God, he would continue to search my heart and plague my conscience, not out of any sort of malice or revenge, but because he knew that secrets are the devil’s playground, and Satan would continue to mock me and my desire for holiness by reminding me of my failure from the past over and over again. Now that my sin was confessed and guilt owned up to, and forgiveness received and reconciliation made, the devil had no more power over me in that area, and any distance between me and my friend, and between me and my God, caused by my sin had been erased.

You remember the story, told in Luke’s gospel, of the two criminals crucified right and left of Jesus , and how one of them cursed Jesus, but the other rebuked him, reminding him that, while Jesus was innocent, the two of them were criminals, being justly executed for their crimes. Then, he turned to Jesus and asked him to remember him when he came into his kingdom. At that moment, he was “chancing his arm”, stretching out his hand, as it were, towards Jesus and asking for forgiveness for his sins. And Jesus, you remember, said to him “Today you will be with me in Paradise”. Jesus, in turn was stretching out his arm ,as it were, to that criminal, and taking hold of his hand and saying “I forgive you.”

Today, brothers and sisters, let us consider if there is someone in our lives that we need to forgive and make that decision to chance our arm and take the risk of forgiving, first in our hearts, then, if necessary, by approaching the one who has hurt us to seek reconciliation. But for now, let us look to the cross and see Jesus stretching out his hand to us, offering us the strength to take the step of forgiving the one who has hurt us, as Jesus has so often taken the step of forgiving us for our many sins against him. Will we take his hand and ask for the grace to reach out in forgiveness to the one who has hurt us?

Or perhaps we are the one who has caused hurt or offence to another, and , as we face the cross today, let us make the decision to seek out that other and, whether in person, or by phone, or even by email, ask forgiveness from them. Let us also stretch out our hand to Jesus, seeking his strength to chance our arm and take the courageous, humbling step of admitting to another that we are guilty and ask for their forgiveness.

Let us not forget, either, that the whole drama of “chancing our arm”, of confession and forgiveness, is re-enacted for us each time we come to celebrate the sacrament of reconciliation. Over the last few weeks, I have been moved by the many who have come to me to celebrate this sacrament, and I know that God has indeed been busy in your hearts through this whole coronavirus pandemic and he has used this time of slowing down and restriction on our movements to lead us to a deeper searching of our hearts and desire for a closer, deeper relationship with Him, untroubled by the shadow of past sins.

St Louis Marie de Montfort once wrote “We will never do anything great for God unless we are willing to RISK for him.” Brothers and sisters, we will never do anything greater for God than “chancing our arm”, taking the risk of reaching out to another, either in confession of guilt or in forgiveness for hurt done to us. Don’t we have this saying in our culture: “To err is human, but to forgive is divine”?

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Bulletin-September 13, 2020 https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/09/bulletin-september-13-2020/ Wed, 09 Sep 2020 14:48:43 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/?p=4975 Here is the September 13, 2020 Bulletin, which includes a brand new ‘Fr. Bob Writes’ for this week.

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Here is the September 13, 2020 Bulletin, which includes a brand new ‘Fr. Bob Writes’ for this week.

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Parish Bulletin for Sunday, September 6, 2020 https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/03/parish-bulletin-for-sunday-september-6-2020/ Thu, 03 Sep 2020 16:43:34 +0000 https://www.stphilips-church.com/2020/09/03/parish-bulletin-for-sunday-september-6-2020/ Please see the Parish Bulletin for Sunday, September 6, 2020.

Have a great Labour Day weekend!

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Please see the Parish Bulletin for Sunday, September 6, 2020.

Have a great Labour Day weekend!

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