Check out what other churches have done over the past several years for Week of Prayer for Christian Unity:
This past week Pope Francis did something that may be surprising to some and inconsequential to others, but we should recognize how much work and prayer went into this move, no matter our feelings about the outcome.
With a Motu proprio released on Monday, January 11, 2021, Pope Francis established that from now on the ministries of Lector and Acolyte are to be open to women, in a stable and institutionalized form through a specific mandate. ~ Vatican
To many of us in Canada we may be surprised to learn that women ministering as lectors, altar servers and Eucharistic ministers was not already sanctioned by the Vatican, as it has been in practice for decades here. Some may think this step taken by Pope Francis is simply dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s on an already accepted practice. However, there is much more to it than that, and although the practical application of this move is already part of our everyday lives in Canada, the consequences in other parts of the world is much greater, and the theology and hard work that went into this final decision should not be overlooked.
The National Catholic Reporter has an entire series of articles on fratelli tutti, including this one by Brit Luby: “Pope Francis’ encyclical inspires me to speak boldly for interfaith inclusion”. In this Week of Prayer for Christian Unity we invite you to read the article by clicking here.
As we begin this Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, we realize that it will look different than other years. But while we cannot be together physically, the pandemic offers us a unique opportunity to join together even more powerfully in prayer.
Yesterday we posted a sermon by Amanda McCulloch, the Associate Pastor of children’s ministry and congregational life at Highland Baptist Church. If you missed it you can still see it by clicking here.
Throughout the week we will post more content about the Week, culminating with our own ecumenical service on Sunday January 24 using music from our sister churches in Forest Hill and Area. And on Monday January 25 Pope Francis and the World Council of Churches invites you to pray with Christians throughout the world in a live event at 2pm. We will post the link to that service next Monday, and you can read more about it by clicking here.
The Diocese of Hamilton is very blessed to own a Heritage Edition of the hand-illuminated Saint John’s Bible. We had one of the sections of the Bible visit St. Francis a few years ago, perhaps you were able to see the beauty and spirituality of it for yourself. We invite you to revisit that event and learn more about the Saint John’s Bible by watching the video below, and by visiting the Diocese’ website by clicking here.
In this SLHour podcast by Deacon Pedro:
In his new book, Let Us Dream, Pope Francis invites us to dream together for a post-COVID world. This week, book collaborator, Austen Ivereigh, gives us all the details. Billy has a question about Christmas, Mark Matthews tells us what’s good about computer graphics, and we meet singer/songwriter and teenager, Miley Azbill.
‘Fratelli Tutti’: With these words, Saint Francis of Assisi addressed his brothers and sisters and proposed to them a way of life marked by the flavour of the Gospel. In his simple and direct way, Saint Francis expressed the essence of fraternal openness that allows us to acknowledge, appreciate and love each person, regardless of physical proximity, regardless of where he or she was born or lives.” (FT#1) These are the opening words from Pope Francis in his latest encyclical, On Fraternity and Social Friendship.
Join us on Wednesday, January 27th for a 90 minute Zoom webinar to walk through of this beautiful document. Written by Pope Francis to “all people of good will.” Presented by Mrs. Teresa Hartnett, Director of the Family Ministry Office. Register by calling 905-528-7988 ext. 2249 or online at hamiltondiocese.com.