Homily – November 7, 2021

November 6th, 2021

I don’t know if you’ve heard of the book, Angela’s ashes. It’s about the dire poverty and hunger of the poor in Limerick, in Ireland. When there was knock on the door at mealtime no one was ever turned away, they just a little more water to the stew.

Today’s scriptures tell the story of two widows, living centuries apart. The only thing they have in common is an open heart to the needs of others.

The prophet Elijah intruded into this widow’s life and asked for bread. She explained her own situation; she had handful of meal in a jar and a little oil for cooking a final meal for her son and herself. Elijah made her a promise; if she shared the little she had, then the jar of meal will not be emptied and the jug of oil will not fail until the drought is over.

Jesus praises the widow he sees in the Temple. She drops her copper coins into the collection basket, trusting they will be put to good use. It was all she had, but she was willing to help those who were worse off than herself. These two widows share a common kindness, an open heart to those who share their poverty.

This ever present pandemic has turned our lives upside down. We never imagined theaters closed, restaurants closed, family gatherings discouraged, weddings and funerals with limited attendance. Whoever imagined working from home would be the normal or teaching on line? What will the next normal be?

So many people are just stressed out waiting for new guidelines for the future.

We all want to discover new ways to reconnect, to be there for one another. A phone call, an email would be great.

I think we’re all familiar with the image of the lone wolf, the predator searching for its prey. But wolves never travel alone, they travel in packs and as they travel they bump into one another, nudge one another just to let one another know they are not alone, I’m with you.

Can there such a thing as a ‘lone Christian? I hope not.

Maybe this is one way of coming out of this pandemic, letting family and friends and strangers know they are not alone.

Many people’s financial security has been impacted by this virus. Bars and restaurants, small businesses were closed never to reopen.

Government was there to help, but that will change.

Here’s our reality as a parish.

From now on until Christmas you’ll be inundated with appeals for help. Just check the bulletin and see the appeals for Christmas food, Christmas clothing, and Christmas toys. Our St. Vincent de Paul men and women have so many requests for help at this time of year and the number of needy men and women and families never goes down. It’s the same for the Salvation Army, the Scott Mission, and The Good Shepherd Refugee.

Some people may resent all these appeals, ignore them. Our past Christmases appeals prove that’s not true here. Your past generosity gives great promise.

Today’s widows offer us an example. They had open hearts to the needs of others.

In these coming weeks before Christmas may we, as a parish family, be gifted with open hearts and open hands.

Homily – October 31, 2021

October 31st, 2021

Behold O Israel the Lord our God is one; you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. This prayer is called the Shema. Observant Jews say it many times a day.

You may see a little plaque on the doorpost of a Jewish home or apartment, this contains the Shema pray and people touch it as they enter or leave their home and pray the Shema.

This pray stressed the truth that God is one and that the Jewish people were not to be seduced into believing in the many gods in which their neighbours believed.

When the Scribe asked his question he was not trying to trap Jesus, he was just asking ‘what do you think?

Jesus’ answer was quick and to the point but he added words we need to hear today; you shall love your neighbour as you love yourself. The way John the Apostle put was, how can you say you love God, whom you have never seen, when you do not love your neighbour who you see? To put it another way; ‘how can you say you love God who you’ve never seen when you dismiss from your life the person sitting next to you on the bus or subway because of their color or the way they’re dressed or their mannerism?

We need to hear these challenging words of Jesus and John and ask ourselves how they challenge our own way of relating to other people of other faiths, other national origins.

There was article in the Star last week on the rise of acts of violence against places of worship; mosques and temple, synagogues and churches vandalized and defaced with racist slogans, what’s behind these actions. It’s usually fear of the different, the strange.

What’s the greatest commandment? Love God, love your neighbour. But love is the most over used, the most abused word in the English language. We flip around so easily that the word love has lost its meaning, its power.

The power of the words ‘love’ challenges our prejudges, our bigotry, our racism, even as we deny these realities in our lives.

Right here, right now we celebrate real and proven love as we make present to us the passion and death of Jesus, when Jesus handed over to us his body, his blood, his life and left us with these challenging words…love one another as I’ve loved you.

We all know there is a great difference between loving a person and liking a person. There are some people we will never like. We have personality clash with them, they turn us off. But we are challenged to love them; to wish them well and pray for their well being. That’s how we love as Jesus loved us.

Bulletin – October 31, 2021

October 30th, 2021

NOVEMBER IS THE MONTH OF ALL SOULS

BOX OF REMEMBRANCE

A Box of Remembrance will be placed on the altar for the month of November. You are invited to write the names of your deceased relatives and friends on a sheet of paper at home and bring it to place in the box.

Those whose names are in the Box of Remembrance will be remembered at all the Masses celebrated in November.

UPDATING OUR PARISH RECORDS

At this time, we would like to update our Parish records.

If you have changed your address, telephone number or email address, please let us know. Thank you for your cooperation.

DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME ENDS NOVEMBER 7th

Remember to set your clocks back one hour on Saturday evening November 6th before you go to bed!

ANNOUNCED MASSES

November 1st to November 7th, 2021

MONDAY – FRANK KENNY – Requested by Agnes Gaughan
TUESDAY – DECEASED MEMBERS OF THE INTINI FAMILY – Requested by Chiara Intini
WEDNESDAY – SOULS IN PURGATORY – Requested by the Nguyen Family
THURSDAY – SOULS IN PURGATORY – Requested by Mirian Fabra
FRIDAY – SOULS IN PURGATORY – Requested by Mirian Fabra
SATURDAY – INTENTIONS OF THE ROSARY GROUP – Requested by Linda Law
SUNDAY – 10:30 AM – JOAN RUEST – Requested by Ron Ruest
SUNDAY – 12:30 PM – BENJAMIN JOSE GIBERSON SR. – Requested by Joan Giberson

ALTAR SERVERS

The Altar Server Ministry invites children, 10 and above, who are interested in learning how to serve at Mass, to please email stgabrielsaltarservers@gmail.com with details of the Mass at which they would like to serve.

CHILDREN’S LITURGY – VOLUNTEERS NEEDED

At the 10:30 AM Mass from October to May each year, children ages 4 to 10 have the opportunity to gather as a group for the Liturgy of the Word led by parents who have volunteered.

We are in great need of more volunteers to assist this program.

For more information or to volunteer, please call Dawn Burke at 416 671-0561 or leave a message at the Parish Office.

SHARELIFE!

Double your impact on ShareLife Sunday

ShareLife Sunday is a special day for our parish, as we join together in support of those who are poor and marginalized. And we now have an opportunity to make an even greater difference with our donations. From now through November 15, our gifts to ShareLife will be matched by a generous donor up to a total of $750,000.

Our parish’s ShareLife goal this year is $187,000. To date we have achieved $170,875. Will you help us reach our goal?

“Thank you to each and every person who showed solidarity with those who suffer by making a sacrificial gift.”
– Cardinal Thomas Collins

Today is the final ShareLife Sunday of 2021.
Please give generously.

FOOD FOR ROSALIE HALL & THE GOOD SHEPHERD CENTRE

As you know, each week we collect food for Rosalie Hall and the Good Shepherd Centre.

Rosalie Hall assists young parents and their children to realize their potential through the provision of a wide range of child development, community, residential and educational services.

Good Shepherd provides hot meals and shelter for the homeless in our city as well as a chance to start again through the Resettlement or DARE Programs.

Your food donations are more important than ever as Covid 19 continues and numbers of needy people continue to increase. Please check the expiry dates before donating since we cannot pass on food that has expired. Thank you for your generous support.

QUEEN OF APOSTLES HEALING RETREAT

1617 Blythe Road Mississauga
Thursday November 11th from 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM

Queen of Apostles Renewal Centre is holding a Healing Retreat for those suffering with cancer.

Please join them as they journey through the challenges of living and dealing with cancer.

The cost is $40.

To find out more information or to register, please email office@qoa.ca or call 905 278 5229.

ESTATE PLANNING FROM A CATHOLIC PERSPECTIVE

Saturday, November 13th, 2021 at 9:00 AM

Join this webinar and learn about the importance of a Will, Powers of Attorney & Estate Planning as well as Catholic teachings and traditions around cremation.

The Archdiocese of Toronto estate planning team and Catholic Cemeteries & Funeral Services will share:
How to protect your loved ones with a proper will
How to ensure that your wishes are legally protected
– About Powers of Attorney
– Estate Trustee selection
– Finding lawyers and estate planning advisors
– Our Catholic traditions around wills, cremation,
burial and funerals

An estate planning guide will be mailed to all attendees at no cost.

To register, send them an email to: development@archtoronto.org

Please include ‘webinar on November 13’ in the subject line and provide your name and mailing address in the body of a message (otherwise they won’t be able to send you your copy of the Estate Planning guide!). Also, they would be grateful if, for the sake of their statistics, you could let them know whether you are planning to watch this webinar alone or together with a family member.

You will receive a link to the webinar on November 8th, and a couple of reminders closer to the date of the presentation.

NEW BEGINNINGS ONLINE SEPARATED/DIVORCED PROGRAM

Thursday November 18th at 7:00 PM

The Online Separated/Divorced Introductory Program offers both women and men a learning environment which is safe, welcoming and non-judgmental. The program provides 4 weeks of psycho-education which assists and accompanies the separated/divorced in exploring grief, experiencing healing and renewing faith. The program resources include PowerPoint, audio/video media and time will be allocated for group discussion.

Program Goals
• Understanding the fundamentals of grief and
mourning
• Explaining the transitional dynamics of loss
• Developing skills for emotional management and
practical car
• Renewing faith and rediscovery of personal
spirituality

Program Access
The ideal candidate is ready and able to participate in a group setting. Each candidate will be screened prior, to being considered for admittance into the program.

For more information and to register please contact: Arcangelo Limanni, MRE (416) 921-1163 ext. 2225 alimanni@cfstoronto.com

We welcome people from all ethnic, cultural and religious backgrounds

COME AND SEE RETREAT

Saturday, November 20th from 9 :00 AM to 3:30 PM

The Office of Vocations will host a Come & See – Day Retreat for men 18 years and older, at St. Augustine’s Seminary on Saturday, November 20th from 9:00 AM to 3:30 PM This day retreat offers men a way to discern a possible call to priesthood at our seminary. We encourage you to promote this retreat in your parish and during your livestream Masses. Thank you in advance for your generosity as we work together to build a culture of vocations.

Please register at www.vocationstoronto.ca.

For more information go to vocations@archtoronto.org

THE GARDEN SHED

LIFE IN THE GARDEN

With the temperature dropping and the leaves falling, it’s time to harvest the last crops, cover the boxes and mulch the beds before winter’s deep freeze. Nature is signaling that it is time to rest.

We in the Garden Ministry want to thank you for the comments and encouragement that you have shared with us and for your prayers for the well-being of the garden. St. Gabriel’s Garden continues to be an adventure, one that we share with our garden relations: flowers, grasses and trees, birds, fur bearers, insects and crawlers. To them all, we express our deep gratitude. Let us pray that we all overwinter in good health and return eager to begin again in March.

P.S. The young fox that I mentioned two weeks ago, was brought to the Animal Rescue facility in Downsview (thanks to Hélène and John in the office and the City) and is recovering well from a parasitic infection.

Homily – October 24, 2021

October 24th, 2021

The most interesting word in today’s gospel is the word ‘again’. Lord, let me see again, Again suggests that Bartimaeus did at one time have the wonderful gift of sight. We don’t know how he lost it but lost he did and now he is desperate to have that beautiful gift restored. Not even the crowd could keep him quiet.

With his sight restored Bartimaeus would see things with a deeper appreciation. Sometimes we hear things so often that we can lose sight of what is being said.

There was an article in a prominent Catholic magazine that claimed that about 60% of church going Catholics do not believe in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Holy Communion they receive at Mass. Is it a symbol, a memory, a figure of speech?

No it is a reality. Under the appearance of bread and wine Jesus is truly present. After the priest says the words of consecration; take and eat, this is my body, take and drink, this is my blood he sings the words, ‘The mystery of faith’.And you good people answer ; When we eat this bread and drink this cup, we proclaim your death O Lord, until you come again..

Like seeing things so often we can fail to see the depth of their beauty, we can reduce them to the ordinary, the unspectacular.

Hearing the words, this is my body take and eat, this is my blood take and drink we miss the other words of Jesus ’unless you eat the flesh of man and drink his blood, you cannot have life in you. Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood live in me and I live in them and I will raise them up on the last day.

The people who first heard these words of Jesus found them to be a hard saying and many of them walked with him no more…

The presence of Jesus in the Eucharist is a mystery of our faith. A mystery is something of which we cannot know anything; a mystery is something of which we cannot know everything. A mystery of faith, a trust that when Jesus said over the bread ‘this is my body’ and sharing the cup of wine, this is my blood

then bread is more than bread and wine is more than wine; they are the body and blood of Jesus.

A man asked Jesus to heal him and Jesus questioned him, do you believe I can do this. The man simply, honestly replied, ’Lord I believe, help the little faith I.’

As we receive Holy Communion at this Mass maybe our simple prayer of faith might be not, Let me see again but give me the eyesight of faith help me believe again in this wonderful mystery. that in Holy Communion I receive you, body, blood, soul and divinity my bread of life, my promise of eternal life. Lord, increase the little faith I have

Bulletin – October 17, 2021

October 17th, 2021

UPDATING OUR PARISH RECORDS

At this time, we would like to update our Parish records.

If you have changed your address, telephone number or email address, please let us know. Thank you for your cooperation.

MAKE SURE YOU ARE COUNTED!

Cardinal Collins has requested that a weekend Mass attendance count be conducted annually in all parishes and missions of the Archdiocese. This year the attendance count will continue on the weekends of October 16th /17th and 23rd/24th.

The purpose of the count is to have a more accurate assessment of the number of people attending Mass on a weekend. We realize that the parish headcount will reflect the allowed numbers during this ongoing pandemic; however, an accurate account of the number of people attending is very important nonetheless.

When you come in for Mass, you may notice a few “counters” clicking on tally counters at the doors of the church. The counters will be doing their jobs in a way as discreetly and non-intrusively as possible.

CHURCH BULLETIN ADVERTISING

Liturgical Publications is seeking advertisements for our church bulletin. This advertising helps to cover the costs of producing the bulletin each week. Please support our bulletin and advertise your product or service. Call Liturgical Publications at 905 624 4422 for more information.

ANNOUNCED MASSES

October 18th to October 24th, 2021

MONDAY – KOON TING LAU – Requested by Linda Law & Family
TUESDAY – SEE HIM CHIU – Requested by The Chiu Family
WEDNESDAY – ROMULO CHRISTIAN GONZALEZ – Requested by his Parents
THURSDAY KENG OWYONG – Requested by Helen Owyong
FRIDAY – ABANDONED SOULS IN PURGATORY – Requested by The Nguyen Family
SATURDAY – BIRTHDAY INTENTIONS OF LUCILLE YEUNG – Requested by The Yeung Family
SUNDAY – 10:30 AM – JUAN ANGELO MANGAHAS – Requested by Anna Mae Mangahas
SUNDAY – 12:30 PM – ALOYSIUS TELLIS – Requested by Brenda & Family

ALTAR SERVERS

The Altar Server Ministry invites children, 10 and above, who are interested in learning how to serve at Mass, to please email stgabrielsaltarservers@gmailcom with details of the Mass at which they would like to serve.

JUST A REMINDER

The Parent meeting for those whose children will receive First Communion in the spring is October 26th at 7:30 PM.

The Parent meeting for those whose children will be confirmed in the spring will be on October 28th at 7:30 PM

WORLD MISSION SUNDAY

October 23rd/24th

Since 1922, the Pontifical Missions Societies, through the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, have supported the temporal needs of missions and created awareness of the work of the missions throughout the world. Some examples of their projects include: building churches, pastoral centres, cathedrals, religious houses of formation, homes for the clergy; offering formation programs for lay missionaries; providing radio and television production and audio-visual materials to remote mission areas; and supporting pastoral work in various rural dioceses.

There will be a second collection on the weekend of October 23rd/24th for the Evangelization of the Nations, otherwise known as World Mission Sunday.

This is a worldwide collection for the missionary Church and it is our opportunity to assist at-need Catholic communities around the globe. Our offerings are combined with those of other Catholics around the world and distributed to missions and dioceses.

We are called to share from our abundance with those who are less fortunate and lack the basic essentials to know, love and praise God. Thank you for your support of this important work.

SHARELIFE

Living the Gospel by supporting seminarians

We must pray for good and holy priests. But we must also ensure they are equipped with an excellent educational and spiritual formation, which is why your gift to ShareLife supports St. Augustine’s Seminary. The future of our Church, and the essential pastoral care provided by our priests, depends on our generosity.

October 31st is the next ShareLife Sunday.

Please give generously during the special collection or anytime at sharelife.org.

FOOD FOR ROSALIE HALL & GOOD SHEPHERD CENTRE

Thank you for your generous support of Rosalie Hall and the Good Shepherd Centre during our Thanksgiving Food Drive. Your response was overwhelming!

Rosalie Hall assists young parents and their children to realize their potential through the provision of a wide range of child development, community, residential and educational services.

Good Shepherd provides hot meals and shelter for the homeless in our city as well as a chance to start again through the Resettlement or DARE Programs.

Your food donations are more important than ever as Covid 19 continues and numbers of needy people continue to increase. Please check the expiry dates before donating since we cannot pass on food that has expired.

BOOK DISCUSSION BUILDING ‘DELIGHT MUSCLES’

Wednesday, October 20th at 7:00 PM

A virtual event recommended by the Office for Promoting Christian Unity and Religious Relations with Judaism

The Institute for Islamic, Christian, and Jewish Studies (ICJS) provides lectures and discussions to build religious literacy among the public. Ross Gay will share insights from his recent book that explores the delights of the ordinary, especially the small actions of individuals that create community. These shared bonds lead to the rewards that come from a life closely observed. This poet and essayist will illustrate the importance of acknowledging joy and wonder in our life as a spiritual practice.

Register at https://bit.ly/BookOfDelightsDiscussion

WORLDWIDE Marriage Encounter

Virtual Online, October 22nd to October 24th

Live your best life in love! Restore your loving communication with your spouse and rekindle the romance. The Marriage Encounter experience is a skill-building enrichment program where you, as husband and wife, learn how to be the best couple you can be; a special weekend to spend in ways that normal, daily living tends to inhibit. No group discussion. Based on Catholic values but open to couples of all faiths. Rediscover the love in your relationship!

For more information and to register, contact Marge & Gerard McCauley at gerard.marge@rogers.com or (905) 792-1925. Website: wwme.org

ST. MICHAEL’S COLLEGE SCHOOL VIRTUAL OPEN HOUSE

Tuesday, October 26th and Thursday, October 28th at 7:30 PM

A VIRTUAL EVENT HOSTED BY ST. MICHAEL’S COLLEGE SCHOOL

Discover and experience St. Michael’s College School, an independent school for boys in Grades 7 to 12, near downtown Toronto. Explore robust academics, arts, athletics and activities programming and dynamic mentorship, leadership and experiential learning opportunities! Registration required.
To register go to www.applysmcs.com

THEOLOGY ON TAP – The Final Event!

Nudged by the Spirit: The Journey Continues.

Monday, October 25th from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM

After 16 years, the Young Adult Ministry of Faith Connections is drawing to a close.

As a congregation, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto reflected and prayed about offering opportunities for adults in our Church, and beyond, that were most needed and appealing. They invite you to celebrate with them as the Spirit moves them forward, from Faith Connections, to new paths that reflect their common Christian vocation.

Join them virtually on Monday, October 25th, for Faith Connections’ final Theology on Tap Central – “Nudged by the Spirit: The Journey Continues”. They are looking forward to celebrating the end of this journey with you with a special panel of speakers and reflections. Please go to faithconnections@csj-to.ca for more information.

THE GARDEN SHED

LIFE IN THE GARDEN

Fox stood tentatively on the curb beside the lavender bed, haunches low, eyes squinting as if holding them open cost too much effort. We assessed each other. It was young, scrawny and its attitude strikingly different from that of other urban foxes I have encountered. They projected a self-assurance and comfort in their environment; this fox was submissive.

Was it injured or starving? Should I call Animal Rescue? I threw some nuts to entice it to walk, which it did. Clearly not injured, I assumed it was hungry, emptied my snack pouch and left for home.

Although feeding wild animals is not a wise practice, in this case I felt it was justified. Did sly fox con me with its submissive performance? Maybe – this time.

Looking for adventure? Join the Garden Ministry: sgpgardenministry@gmail.com