Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of April 17, 2006
Archbishop gives gratitude homily
Priests renew their commitment at Chrism Mass
- WCR photo by Bill Glen
With his wife Leanna and their son Keaton, Mark Hagman accepts the consecrated oils from Archbishop Thomas Collins on behalf of St. Agnes Parish in Mayerthope.
By BILL GLEN
WCR Staff Writer
Catholics in the Edmonton Archdiocese have much to be thankful for, says Archbishop Thomas Collins.
"We have perpetual adoration of the Eucharist at St. Andrew's Parish. There are many vocations to the priesthood and solemn professions to the religious life of a sister. The diaconate has been reinstituted within our midst. There are a number of people participating in the rich array of lay formation."
Speaking at the annual Chrism Mass at St. Joseph's Basilica, Collins described Newman Theological College as "a grace in our diocese that will grow and thrive for generations to come."
Seminary a blessing
St. Joseph's Seminary is a blessing, drawing men to the priesthood. And for 80 years, St. Joseph's College on the University of Alberta campus has let the light of Christ shine, he said.
The archbishop reflected on the state of the archdiocese during the April 10 Mass at which the holy oils were blessed for use in sacraments across the archdiocese over the coming year.
Along with the other Western Canadian bishops, Collins will report to Pope Benedict XVI and other Vatican officials during his ad limina visit to Rome in the fall.
With blessings come challenges, Collins said. The week before Easter is a time to express gratitude, but also when we should examine our consciences to see if we have responded to our mission as servants of Christ.
"The Lord began his public ministry bringing new life into the world and the light of God into the darkness," he said.
"On this day, we gather as a family of God's people in the archdiocese. Each one of us is given a sacred vocation from the Lord to let his spirit be upon us.
"He has anointed us to bring good news to the poor; to accept the downtrodden and set them free," the archbishop said.
About 100 priests, including Collins and Archbishop Emeritus Joseph MacNeil, renewed their commitment to priestly service.
Collins' recognition of the work performed by the priests, nuns, deacons and lay people in the archdiocese drew a hearty and lengthy ovation.
The archbishop blessed the Oil of the Catechumens as a sign of strength needed in all. The Oil of the Sick will be taken throughout the archdiocese for the Anointing of the Sick, to bring forth the healing presence of the Lord. And the consecrated Chrism Oil will be used in many sacraments, including two ordinations in the coming weeks.
Gary Lee will be ordained April 18, followed by Marc Cramer's celebration June 19. Both events will commence at 7:30 p.m. at the basilica.
Mark and Leanna Hagman received the oils on behalf of St. Agnes Parish in Mayerthorpe. Leanna said the oils will help to heal a community that is still coming to terms with the killing of four RCMP officers more than a year ago.
Said Leanna, "The members of the church have been praying for the victims, and for the (James) Roszko family. As Catholics, we believe the oils, with anointing, will bring healing."