One main word in Lenten season is “forgiveness”. Pope Francis explained the difference between asking for “forgiveness” and “apologising”
In order to ask the Lord for forgiveness a person must act as is written in the “Our Father”: repentance of their sins with sincerity in the knowledge that God forgives always and forgives others with equal generosity and joy. A closed heart can in a way also block God’s omnipotence. A closed heart is a heart that does not know forgiveness and is not willing to give it. Today the Pope concentrated on the Gospel story which recounts how Christ explains to Peter that we must forgive “seventy times seven”, that is “always”, stressing that the forgiveness of Lord God grants men, and the forgiveness people grant their neighbours are closely linked.
It all starts with how one presents oneself to God to ask for forgiveness. Prophet Azariah asks for mercy for his people who are suffering but are also guilty of abandoning the Lord’s law. Azariah does not complain to God about this suffering but admits the mistakes the people have made and repents: asking for forgiveness is different, it is not the same as apologising. I made a mistake? Sorry, I made a mistake….I sinned! They are two completely different things. Sin isn’t a simple mistake. Sin is idolatry, it is worshiping idols, the idol of pride, of vanity, of money, of oneself, of wellbeing….. We have so may idols. And so Azariah does not apologise, he asks for forgiveness. But this request for forgiveness must be sincere, it must come from the bottom of the heart and at the same time it must be given. Just as the master does in the parable told by the Son of God, the master forgives and cancels a servants debt after the latter entreaties. But, the servant does not do the same with another fellow servant who owes him money: he shows no mercy and allows him to be sent to prison despite the trivial sum he owed. Forgiveness is that which the Lord teaches in the Our Father: Jesus teaches us to pray to the Father in this way: “Forgive us our debt as we forgive our debtors” If I am not able to forgive, then I am not able to ask for forgiveness. ‘But, Father, I confess, I go to confession….’ ‘And what do you do before you confess?’ ‘Well, I think of the things I did wrong.’ ‘Alright’ ‘Then I ask the Lord for forgiveness and promise not to do those things again.’ ‘Okay…and then you go to the priest? Before you do, however, you are missing something: have you forgiven those who have hurt you?’ Basically the forgiveness, God will give you requires the forgiveness that you give to others: “This is what Jesus teaches us about forgiveness: first, asking forgiveness is not a simple apology, it is to be aware of the sin, of the idolatry that I have committed, of the many idolatries; second, God always forgives, always—be He asks me to forgive (others). If I do not forgive, in a sense, I close the door to God’s forgiveness. ‘Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.’
Sincerely in Christ
Fr Nicolas Tumbelaka
SECTION TWO – Article 1
IV. “YOU DID NOT ABANDON HIM TO THE POWER OF DEATH”
410 After his fall, man was not abandoned by God. On the contrary, God calls him and in a mysterious way heralds the coming victory over evil and his restoration from his fall. This passage in Genesis is called the Protoevangelium (“first gospel”): the first announcement of the Messiah and Redeemer, of a battle between the serpent and the Woman, and of the final victory of a descendant of hers.
FROM OUR ARCHDIOCESE
- Give Us Time! On Friday, Feb 6, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the Criminal Code of Canada prohibition on assisted suicide & gave the federal government one year to draft a new law. It is urgent that we as Catholics show we support new legislations & urge the government to obtain sufficient time by invoking the notwithstanding clause. With a federal election this fall, one year is not enough time to draft effective legislation. Help us call on the federal government to invoke the notwithstanding clause now to give Parliament more than one year. Please visit giveustime.ca to download & sign the postcard to urge the Federal government to invoke the notwithstanding clause so Parliament can draft effective assisted suicide legislation.
- Public Way of the Cross in Downtown Vancouver: Join in praying the Solidarity Way of the Cross at Cathedral Square in downtown Vancouver on Sat, March 28 at 3:30pm. As pert of the events for the 30th World Youth Day in the Archdiocese of Vancouver, join other young adults and those involved with Development & Pease in prayer & witness. For details visit www.rcav.org/wyd.
- Chrism Mass: Join us for the Chrism Mass, one of the most solemn & significant liturgies of our Church where the blessing of the oil of catechumens, the oil of the sick, and the oil of chrism takes place. Wed, April 1st, Mass at 5pm, at Holy Rosary Cathedral, Vancouver.
- The Easter Story: Our Lady of Fatima ecumenical choir is presenting our annual Lenten/Easter Story Musical in songs and readings on Palm Sunday. No charge, free will offering accepted. Sunday, March 29th from 2 to 3:20 pm at Our Lady of Fatima Church, Coquitlam.
- World wide Marriage Encounter Weekend: Make your good marriage better by attending an intimate weekend with your spouse. Hear testimonies from three couples and a priest in a series of talks that will get you communicating in a new way! There is no group sharing. Friday, April 17th to Sunday April 19, Holiday Inn, 700 Old Lillooet Road, North Vancouver. Please call Steve and Mary Bohnen to register at 604.876.7298 or email [email protected] or visit www.wwme.org
- Lenten Talks at Our Lady of Mercy Church: All are invited to Lenten talks starting February 20th to March 27th. There will be different topics with great speakers:
- Mar 27th: Joseph of Armathea “The Secret disciple who was exposed” By Fr Tien Tran
- CWL wishes to Thank You: The ladies of Catholic Women’s League who hosted a “Soup Sunday” on February 22nd, wish to thank all those who supported them. They raised $575/- for their effort with your help. Thank You.
- Pilipino Mass: There will be no Pilipino Mass on Sunday, April 5th at 7 pm which is Easter Sunday.
- Invitation for Young Adults: We are beginning a new ministry for all young adults in their 18’s, 20’s and 30’s, single and married alike in our parish. We invite everyone interested in fellowship and growing in their faith, to participate in the life of our parish through service, social and spiritual events with other young adults. You are welcome to join us at the 11 o’clock Mass on Sunday, March 29th to worship together. We have reserved the pews in the center isle closer to the altar. You might even want to consider joining and being a member of this important ministry. Please invite your friends. To learn more about Our Lady of Mercy Youth Adult Ministry, please call or text Gustav Jr @ 604.441.2657 or Patryk @ 778.837.7560 or Patrizia @ 604.355.7571
- Advertising in Our Lady of Mercy Church Bulletin: We are accepting advertisements for our church bulletin. There are only two spots left so please contact Jean @ 604.522.5733, if you are interested as soon as possible. The advertisement will run in the bulletin every Sunday for one year (i.e. April 2014 to April 2015). The cost is $300/- for a business card size and $500/- for two business cards. Payment should be made before April 1st 2015 to Our Lady of Mercy Church, either by cheque or cash. Thank you for supporting our church.
- Please collect your tax receipts for 2014. If you have any concerns please contact the parish office be-tween 8:30 am to 3:30 pm (12 to 1 is lunch break) at 604.522.5733
- Domestic Abuse Services: Help Line 604.640.7549
MASS TIMINGS / NOVENAS PRAYER / GROUP MEETINGS
Mass Schedules: Weekend: Saturday: 9 am, 5pm (anticipated)
Sunday: 9 & 11 am
Weekdays: Monday to Thursday: 8:15 am
Friday: 9 am & 7 pm.
Stations of the Cross: Friday at 6:30 pm
Public Holidays: 9 am
Confession: 30 minutes prior to Masses or upon request.
Perpetual Adoration Chapel: Open every day. For more info please call the parish office.
Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament every Friday: 9:45 am to 6:00pm , with Divine Mercy Novena/Chaplet at 3:00 pm & Benediction at 6:00 pm. (only during Lent)
Novena to Our Mother of Perpetual Help: Wednesday at 6:30 pm.
Infant Baptism: Baptisms are on the 2nd Sunday of every month at 12:30 pm. Instructions are on the last Thursday of the month at 7pm in the Church. It is mandatory that parents & God parents attend.
Please Note: The Baptism form must be filled before attending the instructions. The form is available in the parish office.
Marriage: Contact the pastor at least four months prior to the date of your marriage.
Bible Study: The group meets every Tuesday at 7:00pm
Children’s Liturgy: Children are taken aside during Mass and taught the liturgy, thereby helping parents to hear Mass better.
Catholic Women’s League: Meet every second Tuesday of the month at 7pm in the children’s room.
Couples for Christ: Helps couples strengthen family bonds
Hand Maids of the Lord: Meet every Sunday at 2 pm -basement
Indonesian Mass: 6:30 pm every (1st & 3rd Saturday)
Knights of Columbus: Meet every first Thursday of the month at 7:30 pm in the church.
Legion of Mary: Meet every Saturday at 12.30 pm (except 1st Sat)
Junior: Every Sunday at 12:00 pm
Legion of Mary, Spanish : Every Wed at 3:30 pm in the church.
Mustard Seed Group: Every Monday from 7 to 9pm
– do Healing Service: Every 2nd Saturday after 5 pm Mass.
Opus Dei—Ladies: Meet every 4th Wednesday at10:00 am
Opus Dei-Gents: Meet ever 2nd Monday at 6:00 pm
Parish Religious Education Program (PREP): This program is for Catholic children attending non-Catholic schools. Religious classes are offered every Wednesday from 6:30pm. To enroll please contact the parish office.
Philipino Mass: 7pm every 1st Sunday of the month.
Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA): For non-Catholics who want to join the church, and Catholics who want to deepen their faith.
Youth Ministry: 1st & 3rd Saturday of every month from 1 to 5pm.
Our Lady of Mercy School—Principal: Neva Grout , Telephone 604.526.7121;Fax 604.520.3194, E-Mail: [email protected]
PLEASE REMEMBER TO PRAY FOR THOSE WHO ARE SICK AND IN PAIN
Linda Walker, Brian W. Daniel McCarthy, Lourdes Andal, Sonia Burrow, John C. Walker, Elizabeth Keobke, Amiceto Rabang, Patrick Jonathan Manghi, Delima Ngui, Patrick Tranquilino, Carol Ann, Annalyn Richardson, Joven Labandelo, Edilberto & Efrenia Larga, Jenny Walker & Victoria Tyndall, Leon Landry, Edgar Arellano, Sydney Shanti, Joseph Rivera
Holy Communion: Any one who is shut-in and wishes to receive the Eucharist please let us know. If you have a loved one who is sick and needs our prayers, and would like to insert their name in the bulletin, kindly contact the office.
PS: Due to limited space in the bulletin, the names will appear for two weeks only. If you require to extend, please call the office. Thank You .
Mass Schedule & Intentions
Sat. Mar 21, 5:00 pm † Marie Rosario Cayanan
Sun. Mar 22, 9:00 am † Leo Marinas — DA
11:00 am † Anthyma Fernandez-Guevas
Mon. Mar 23, 8:15 am † Hendrika Post Frits
Tue. Mar 24, 8:15 am † Leonardo III/Marjorie Prades
Wed. Mar 25, 8:15 am † Gisele Rabold
Thu. Mar 26, 8:15 am † Chris Bohmer Grada
Fri. Mar 27, 9:00 am Miguel & Maria Vales– Int, 6:30 pm Stations of the Cross, 7:00 pm Therese—Int
Sat. , Mar 28, 9:00am Joseph Westgeest—Int
Catholic Women’s League—CWL: Please note that the ladies of the Catholic Women’s League will meet on the 3rd Sunday of every month at 10 am in the children’s room.
Reminder on Confessions at Our Lady of Mercy
There will be confessions at our Church on Tuesday, March 24th from 7 pm onwards.
“I will be their God and they shall be my people.” – Jeremiah 31:33. What does it mean to be God’s people? It means we recognize that everything we have and everything we are belongs to God. We aren’t “owners” of anything, we are merely “stewards” of the gifts God has given us. It means we are willing to us our gifts and our lives to care for our neighbours and the world, just as God cares for us.