Objectives

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[toggle title=”Celebrating our faith”]

Celebrating our faith

“Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks…” 

     – 1 Thessalonians 5:18-20

Objectives

  • To promote joyful, conscious, full and active participation in the liturgies and the sacraments.
  • To enable reverent and relevant celebrations and create sacred spaces through music, spoken words, and visual environment.
  • To express our faith in diverse ways through prayers, rituals, symbols and silence.
  • To offer liturgical celebrations that motivate, challenge, strengthen and sustain us to live our Christian lives each day.

New Activities Foreseeable by 2020

  • develop ways to create integrated liturgies that bring together the roles of several ministries (presider’s assistants / altar servers, lectors, music, Eucharistic ministers) – perhaps offer seasonal preparation sessions involving these ministries.
  • display something in the Liturgical environment that was created by the children – perhaps as an activity during the Advent and Lenten fairs.
  • coordinate and/or host ecumenical celebrations with Christian churches nearby.
  • host spiritual retreats during Advent and Lent – half days set aside for prayer,
    reflection, spiritual reading, along with music, candles, icons and symbols.
  • walk the Solidarity Way of the Cross – during Lent.

New Activities Planned for 2016-2017

  • explore how to enhance and expand the celebration of the Saturday evening Mass – begin by hosting a “get to know” what the community seeks in the liturgy.
  • encourage and enable participation by youth in Sunday Mass:
    volunteering on the projection team;writing and leading the Prayers of the Faithful.
  • explore joint celebrations with the Malagasy and Saint René Goupil communities.
  • offer evening prayer, Wednesdays, before the course on Understanding the Bible.

Continuing Activities

  • participating in preparations toward liturgies for special feasts and celebrations, spearheaded by the liturgy committee, with significant support from our community:Community Mass (monthly); Feast of Canadian Martyrs; Commissioning of Ministries; Memorial Mass; Reconciliation (Advent and Lent); Anointing of the Sick; Christmas, including children’s pageant; Baptisms; Rite of Enrolment; Solidarity Sunday; Passion Sunday; Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil); Easter Sunday; Pentecost; Confirmation and First Eucharist; Mass on the Grass.
  • supporting the presider for each Saturday evening / Sunday morning Mass, by the laity:assisting in the liturgy – presider’s assistant or altar servers;
    selecting and leading the congregation in the Psalm and hymns (gathering, offertory, communion, closing) – adult and children’s music ministries;

    • leading in singing (at least one Mass each month) – children’s choir;
    • proclaiming the Word – first and second readings – lectors;
    • preparing the Prayers of the Faithful – members of the community;
    • leading the congregation in the Prayers of the Faithful – lectors;
    • selecting the visual images projected on the wall – liturgy committee;
    • adapting the church environment via symbols and flowers to reflect liturgical
      seasons, feast days and themes of the Mass readings – liturgical environment team;
    • operating the projector – technical support team;
    • (Sundays) following the final blessing – children’s percussion section.
  • participating in Mass weekdays – supported by a lector and a Eucharistic minister.
  • praying the Rosary weekdays prior to Mass – by a small group of parishioners.
  • sharing in conversational prayer – evenings, at beginning and end of Scripture study.
  • walking the Way of the Cross – youth-led, during Holy Week.

Continuing to encourage joint efforts among ministries. Recent examples:

  • liturgy committee, liturgical environment and Development and Peace have worked together, for several years, on themes and symbols for Lent.

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[toggle title=”Learning about our faith”]

Learning about our faith

“I want their hearts to be encouraged and united in love, so that they may have all the riches of assured understanding and have the knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ himself, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom…”  

    – Colossians 2:2-3

Objectives

  • To encourage and support one another in growing together in faith in Christ.
  • To share, enrich, and learn from our individual and communal spiritual life.
  • To raise awareness and increase understanding of Church tradition, teaching and practice relating to:
    • (i) scripture, creeds, liturgy, and sacraments;
    • (ii) human dignity, God’s mercy, and life in Christ;
    • (iii) evangelization, social justice, and service to persons in need;
    • (iv) prayer.
  • To enable discussions and discoveries about matters of faith in relation to events and situations in our world today.

New Activities Foreseeable by 2020

  • launch home-based, small groups for Scripture study, prayer, spiritual growth, fellowship, encouragement toward outreach, plus of course, tea and cookies.
  • offer RCIA program, on ‘as needed’ basis.
  • Faith formation – present, teach, and foster discussion on the Catechism of the Catholic Church, looking at three themes during 2017-2020:(i) Christian prayer, (ii) Sacraments of healing, and (iii) Profession of Faith.

New Activities Planned for 2016-2017

  • offer faith-sharing in small group(s), weekday evenings, engaging in reflection and discussion based on Scripture texts and spiritual readings, with aid of a study guide.
  • present a course Understanding the Bible – What? Who? Where? When? How? Why? – historical context, translations, how the writings were compiled – Fall 2016, 10 sessions, Wednesday evenings, with Pierre LaViolette, lecturer at Saint Paul University.
  • present a session on the family (perhaps as Lunch & Learn), drawing upon Amoris Laetitia, the follow-up document to the two synods convoked by Pope Francis.

Continuing Activities

  • Advent and Lenten fair – twice per year – discovering and growing in faith through crafts and activities for children.
  • Scripture Study – roughly 15 sessions per year, weekday evenings –
    reading, reflecting, and sharing responses and insights about our faith in God, based on Little Rock Scripture Study series (commentary, study guide and DVD): – gospel of John – Winter-Spring 2017, before Lent and/or into Easter.
  • Children’s Liturgy of the Word – three Sundays per month, in two groups – discovering and discussing faith in God, from Scripture readings for Mass.
  • Youth activities program – monthly, Friday evenings – exploring and discussing faith and spirituality, focusing on a theme for the year.
  • Lunch & Learn – monthly, after Mass – presenting and discussing topics of interest to parishioners, with a view of living our faith in the world. Requested topics include: (i) aging parents; and (ii) death and funerals – what every Catholic needs to know.
  • Development and Peace – Fall Education – presenting talks or a workshop as a forum for reflection and discussion, and offering written materials (theological reflections, campaign backgrounders) on a theme in social and/or ecological justice.
  • Development and Peace – Share Lent – distributing written materials –
    bulletin inserts, theological reflections, information about development programs with partners in the Global South.
  • Preparation for Baptisms – approximately 3 sessions (1 per family), evenings – offering workshops with catechesis, prayer celebration, reflection, and review of liturgical rites, for parents and godparents.
  • Preparation for Sacraments – approximately 16 sessions, evenings –
    offering formation for children and parents; sharing in prayer celebrations; discovering the mystery of God’s love, through crafts, stories, readings, and rituals; experiencing and reflecting on rites and symbols that connect Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist.
  • Faith Formation – two sessions, Saturday mornings – teaching on the selection and meaning of the readings for Advent and Lent, with Fr. Normand Bonneau, OMI.
  • Faith Formation – three sessions, Saturday mornings – hosting presentations by scholars (Saint Paul University professors) – theme for 2016-17: who is Christ?
    God’s salvation, evangelization, social justice, based on Evangelii Gaudium – The Joy of the Gospel, and the Catechism of the Catholic Church (Part Three – Life in Christ).


Continuing to encourage joint efforts among ministries. Recent examples:

  • youth group made use of Development and Peace resources materials in one of their activities and discussions during Lent;
  • faith formation combined efforts with Development and Peace to present brief talks on Laudato Si’ and climate change, after pizza supper and as Lunch & Learn.

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[toggle title=”Bringing our faith into the world”]

Bringing our faith into the world

“Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to all creation.”           

– Mark 16:15

“You are the light of the world… let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.” 

–  Matthew 5:14-16

Objectives

  • to act on opportunities to serve the poor.
  • to promote social justice and stewardship of God’s creation.
  • to share the good news of our faith in God’s love with our neighbours.
  • to focus our efforts, develop meaningful partnerships, and direct some of our financial resources to Oblate missions and ministries.

New Activities Foreseeable by 2020

  • adopt a strategic approach to missions, food collection and charity.
  • participate in Open Doors Ottawa.
  • explore community events that will bring people “in” to our parish centre; perhaps a regular luncheon, ecumenical in nature, for people in the neighbourhood.
  • appoint a parish representative to S.L.O.E. (Sustainable Living Ottawa East), reporting back regularly to pastoral council about interests and concerns in the neighbourhood.
  • focus our efforts and develop meaningful partnerships with one local (Canadian) agency active in social justice – e.g. OMI Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation.
  • focus our efforts and develop meaningful partnerships with one ‘global South’ mission that directly serves people in need – e.g. OMI mission in Kionyo, Kenya.

New Activities Planned for 2016-2017

  • design and install a new sign in front of the church on Main Street.
  • develop a supplemental leaflet about Canadian Martyrs Church, drawing upon the “stories” written by our parishioners (through consultations in 2015) about what we value and treasure about our community, and how we experience God in our midst.
  • distribute invitation leaflets (parish brochure and supplemental insert) in Ottawa East, including the new residential developments on the former Oblate lands.
  • invite a member of the OMI Lacombe Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation office to speak in our parish about social justice activities.
  • explore options for partnering with the OMI mission in Winnipeg (via Fr. Nicanor), to increase our understanding of Indigenous peoples and to offer the mission our support.
  • take up a special collection to support the OMI mission in Kionyo, Kenya.

Continuing Activities

  • Operation Christmas Child – sending gift boxes to bring joy to children living in poverty or areas devastated by extreme events in Latin America, Africa and Asia – office volunteer prepares decals, parishioners provide items, youth write cards and fill boxes, coordinator delivers boxes to depot.
  • Ottawa Food Bank – sorting and packing food items at the central depot for distribution to food banks throughout Ottawa, by youth and adults of the parish.
  • Share Lent collection – fundraising for development programs with partner agencies in Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East, via Development and Peace.
  • emergency response collections – fundraising for humanitarian aid programs in areas affected by droughts, typhoons, earthquakes, tsunamis, etc. by Development and Peace.
  • DREAM Team – supporting students from Immaculata High School, for a two week project serving the poor in the Dominican Republic.
  • Food Drive during Lent – parishioners donating non-perishable items, coordinators delivering these to Shepherds of Good Hope and Centretown Churches Food Bank.
  • Centretown Churches for Social Action – having a parish representative who attends monthly meetings, reporting back to our parish about current needs and initiatives.
  • donations approved by Pastoral Council from interest on Tobin estate – providing financial support to local and international organizations.
  • action campaigns – seeking signatures of support (postcards) toward political change on concerns in social and ecological justice, through Development and Peace.
  • activities of the OMI Lacombe Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation office – signing petitions, participating in letter writing campaigns, and attending symposia and special liturgies, related to First Nations, mining industries, and ecology and climate change.

Continuing to encourage joint efforts among ministries. Recent examples:

  • a parish dinner was combined with missionary work, in fundraising for DREAM team;
  • youth activities program and preparation for Confirmation joined forces for an apostolic activity to serve the poor, by volunteering at the Ottawa Food Bank.

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[toggle title=”Being a community of faith”]

Being a community of faith

“For where two or three are gathered in My name, I am there among them.”           

– Matthew 18:20

“And let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds.” 

–  Hebrews 10:24

Objectives

  • to create a welcoming environment in which every person feels valued.
  • to act with compassion and care toward one another.
  • to enjoy meaningful friendships and have fun being together.
  • to enhance our appreciation of being an Oblate parish.

New Activities Foreseeable by 2020

  • establish a healing ministry.
  • help our needy parishioners in the same way we supported two new Canadian families.
  • explore various formats and menus for community meals:
    • perhaps an international pot-luck supper, featuring foods from a wide range of
      cultural and ethnic traditions;
    • perhaps with healthy, home-cooked / home-baked foods, from sustainably-sourced food choices, via contributions from all participants.
  • introduce “youth making decisions for youth” – group discussions and workshops for (i) teens and (ii) young adults… around activities and issues which matter to them.
  • explore a “bartering service” in which adults may ask the youth for help with tasks (e.g. social media) and, in exchange, offer to provide a service (e.g. mentoring).
  • host a retreat – a special event for members of our community to deepen our understanding of what it means to be part of an Oblate parish.
  • encourage our Oblate associates to share their spirituality with the parish.

New Activities Planned for 2016-2017

  • offer support to the two Syrian (new Canadian) families whom we are sponsoring, toward learning English and finding employment.
  • have a prayer service that would enable people to name and grieve the losses they have experienced in their lives, and to experience healing.
  • explore partnering with Saint Joseph’s parish for activities relevant to youth.
  • develop a “twinning” initiative between the youth of our parish and youth related to the
    Oblate mission in Kenya (via letter writing, Skype meetings, sending shoeboxes, etc.)

Continuing Activities

  • visiting parishioners in their homes, hospitals, assisted living or seniors’ residences, by trained pastoral care ministers.
  • writing thank you notes, get well cards, and sympathy cards to parishioners, as a sub-ministry of pastoral care.
  • bringing Communion during visits to parishioners, by Eucharistic ministers.
  • providing transportation for our elderly parishioners – to and from Mass, parish
    luncheons and groceries shopping, on as needed basis, by individual volunteers.
  • greeting people at each entrance to the church before Saturday and Sunday Masses, by the welcoming ministry.
  • arranging decor on small tables in breezeway, by liturgical environment team.
  • providing coffee / tea / juice and cookies after Sunday Mass – each week –
    setting out cups, brewing coffee / tea, and cleaning up by hospitality team.
  • parish clean-ups – two per year, spring and fall –
    obtaining supplies, coordinating teams, scrubbing / sweeping / raking / pruning etc.
  • enjoying social activities among youth (e.g. bowling, pizza night) – 2 per year.
  • hosting coffee houses with music – 1 or 2 per year.
  • coordinating and hosting various community meals, each involving setting up tables, coordinating chefs, buying and preparing and serving food, cleaning up afterwards:
    • pizza suppers – monthly;
    • parish luncheons – 4 per year;
    • lunches following parish clean-up – 2 per year;
    • snacks during Lunch & Learn – monthly;
    • hospitality after special Masses – roughly 10 to 15 times per year;
    • parish BBQ after Mass on the Grass – once per year, in June.

Continuing to encourage joint efforts among ministries. Recent examples:

  • youth preparing for Confirmation have taken part in the parish clean-up several times, and on one occasion, they helped to prepare, serve and wash dishes for lunch afterwards;
  • the lunch following one parish clean-up was prepared according to the guidelines for sustainable farming as presented in education materials by Development and Peace.

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[toggle title=”Stewardship and leadership”]

Stewardship and leadership

“Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God…”                     

– 1 John 4:7

“Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God,
serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received.” 

–  1 Peter 4:10

Objectives

  • to promote involvement of laity in the Church.
  • to encourage parishioners to discover and develop their gifts and to offer them opportunities to grow through service.
  • to support and nurture members of our community who are active in ministry.
  • to foster liaison and collaboration among ministries and committees, with the pastor and Oblate leadership, through shared information and joint efforts.
  • to strive for balance among the spiritual and social dimensions of Christian life, based on love of God and love of neighbour.

New Activities Foreseeable by 2020

  • identify, inventory, and develop a resource base of materials (books, websites, brochures, church experiences, parishioners’ input to pastoral planning) that may be drawn upon for designing pamphlets and web pages for welcoming and outreach.
  • provide “in service” teaching via guest speakers, set up a resources shelf in the library, and hold combined retreats for debriefing, sharing, and reflecting on experiences,
    to strengthen links among volunteers who serve in children’s ministries.

New Activities Planned for 2016-2017

  • gather together lectors and Eucharistic ministers to determine what motivates them, what sustains them, how they can be supported in their ministries.
  • provide formation sessions and training workshops for liturgical ministries – Eucharistic ministers, lectors, altar servers, Presider’s assistants.
  • host an event to recognize and thank children and youth who volunteer in ministries.
  • pastoral council will listen to the observations and input from visits and interviews with ministries and committees, in a retreat setting, to learn what motivates and sustains our volunteers, and how pastoral leadership might support these ministries.
  • recruit, build teams and provide training or mentoring for new volunteers, including the younger members of the parish, for:
    • preparation for Baptisms;
    • preparation of the prayers of the faithful;
    • projection (slides during liturgy);
    • liturgical environment (decor);
    • parents to assist with the Christmas pageant;
    • lunches and hospitalities;
    • distribution of leaflets in our neighbourhood(s).
  • pastoral council will have a standing item for communications on the agenda of our monthly meetings, in which we review the meeting’s discussions to identify topics that should be communicated more widely than just through minutes.
  • hold a joint retreat for members of pastoral council and finance committee to see how we can work better together.
  • return to the practice of having an Annual General Meeting.

Continuing Activities

  • being a Eucharistic community under the leadership of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, a style of leadership that “walks with the people”.
  • proclaiming the gospel and delivering a homily, by a priest, at every Mass.
  • serving Communion under both species, bread and wine, by priest(s) and Eucharistic
    ministers, at every Mass.
  • providing resources for volunteers in ministries and parishioners seeking to grow in faith: workbook for lectors; booklets with daily meditations, reflections, and prayers during Advent and Lent.
  • offering orientation to opportunities for volunteers – annually, via Ministry Fair.
  • hosting appreciation events for volunteers in committees and ministries.
  • fostering communication – weekly bulletin, articles in the Epistle, parish website.
  • pastoral planning – annually reviewing our current activities, and refocusing or refining our priorities for the next year, via dialogue among ministries in April-May, followed by value-guided decision making and discernment through prayer in May-June.

Continuing to encourage joint efforts among ministries. Recent examples:

  • prayer group facilitated a Saturday morning retreat for pastoral planning;
  • sponsorship of two Syrian families has brought together many initiatives, an outpouring of support and incredible financial generosity from the whole parish.

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