Today's entry is a bit later than usual and will be rather shorter, as things return to normal now that the Youth Summit 2010 has wrapped up.
The torch has been thrown to the Archdiocese of Montréal for May 18-21, 2012. Indeed, the decision was taken last fall that whenever an international World Youth Day gathering takes place, our focus would be on that; thus Madrid's WYD XXVI will take our undivided attention for youth ministry in 2011.
On Saturday, besides the activities of MJ, I was part of the re-creation of Bishop Guigues' visit to Paroisse St. Joseph in Orléans in 1860: a boat trip on the Ottawa River from the Ottawa Boating Club dock to the landing near Villa St-Louis where I was met by the pastor Mgr Peter Schonenbach, les Soeurs de la Charité, local citizens and an RCMP mounted escort, then riding a landau to a marshalling yard near Place d'Orléans for a parade with marching band and floats to St. Joseph's Church (with many wearing period clothing).
This day's sesquicentennial festivities were closed with the Mass on the Vigil of Pentecost and a reception in the parish hall.
Mgr Peter Schonenbach, Abbé Daniel Berniquez, André Dufault, diacre permanent
Abbé Berniquez, who accompanied me to the parish, then drove me to the residence where we changed into alb, stole and cope for the procession from St. Joseph's cathedral in Gatineau, across the Interprovincial Bridge to Parliament Hill and then eucharistic adoration and Taizé Prayer, confessions in the basilica and on the landing outside.
Yesterday, I had two celebrations with Confirmations of adults and adolescents at noon in English and at the 5:15 francophone Mass: some 30+ at each occasion.
Then the Christian concert in one of the halls at Lansdowne Park featuring Matt Maher (ex-Newfoundlander now living in Arizona), the French-Canadian cultural band Chakidor and the Chorale Gospel de l'Outaouais.
Matt Maher and I chat after the concert as he autographs albums, etc.
This morning, Mgr Paul-André Durocher gave a moving bible study to encourage us to let ourselves carry on the mission of Jesus in reaching out to others in witness and service, followed by the closing Eucharistic litury, the blessing of all by the Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Pedro Lopez Quintana and the handing over of the Ark of the New Covenant to Mgr André Gazaille and the Montréal delegation.
Everyone I spoke to went away boosted in their faith and commitment to the gospel. I was thrilled by how everything turned out so well, grateful for the many blessings we received through Montée Jeunesse and the many graces we witnessed being given by the Lord to others.
Further photos will be posted later in the week. Meantime, these photos are a foretaste of those to come.
Chorale Gospel de l'Outaouais