Sunday, March 31, 2013

Christ est allé dans le jardin, alleluia ! Photos of the Holy Thursday Mass and the Easter Vigil

Christ est allé dans le jardin, alleluia.

Christ a laissé lier ses mains, alleluia.
Christ a voulu souffrir la croix, alleluia.
Christ a laissé percer son cœur,, alleluia.
Christ a dormi dans le tombeau, alleluia !

* * * * * *


Last evening, we welcomed two new members of the Church through the Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Eucharist), Alisha-Lee and Mark.  We also received Douglas into Full Communion with the Catholic Church (he was confirmed and received Holy Communion), and one of our Catholic adults, Natasha, received  the Sacrament of Confirmation. 

The Easter Vigil, with the Light of Christ breaking into the darkness of our lives to see us free from sin and its attachments and consequences, is always a moving experience.  Our Cathedral Choir was in excellent voice, leading us to a profound engagment with our faith.

Thanks to Jean-Claude Grant for these photos and those of the Holy Thursday liturgy below.

Our catechumens prepare for Christian Initiation by professing their faith

* * * * * *


COMMEMORATION OF THE LORD'S INSTITUTION OF THE EUCHARIST & HIS COMMAND TO LOVE AND SERVE ONE ANOTHER (THE FOOTWASHING RITE).  After Mass, the Blessed Sacrament was transferred to the Archbishops' Chapel on the lower level of the Cathedral for adoration by the faithful until 11:00PM.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Ne descends pas dans le tombeau - Ottawa Priest Jubilarians 2013

Ne descends pas dans le tombeau,

Oh ! Jésus,
Ne descends pas dans le tombeau
Qu’ils ont creusé !
Si je ne descends pas dans le tombeau
Comme un froment,
Qui donc fera lever de vos cercueils
Vos corps sans vie ?
Je descendrai dans le tombeau
Pour y dormir.

* * * * * *


Above is a group photo of some of this year's Priest Jubilarians (65, 60, 55, 50, 40 and 25 years of priestly service) taken following the festive meal in the Parish Hall of Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica on Tuesday evening prior to the Chrism Mass at which the jubilarians were principal concelebrants. Others were unable to attend, several due to illness.

After giving a brief resume of each priest's life (with slides depicting highlights of each one's ministry), I presented them with a congratulatory letter and a gift on behalf of the Archdiocese.

Here are photos of the festivities and of some of the jubilarians honoured.  Photos: Robert DuBroy

Fr. Reginald MacNeil, 91, 65 years a priest

Emeritus Archbishop Marcel A. Gervais, 55 years a priest

Biblical scholar Pere Marcel Dumais, o.m.i., 50 years a priest

Reverend Robert LaPlante, 50 years a priest

Mgr Gilles Lavergne, 50 years a priest

Abbe Albert Mufwata Kaumba, 25 years a priest

* * * * * *


All-powerful and ever-living God, your only Son went down among the dead and rose again in glory. In your goodness raise up your faithful people, buried with him in baptism, to be one with him in the eternal life of heaven, where he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Ne laisse pas percer ton cœur - Tenebrae Service at Notre Dame

Ne laisse pas percer ton cœur,

Oh ! Jésus,
Ne laisse pas percer ton cœur
Par tes bourreaux !
Si je ne laisse pas percer mon cœur
Comme un fruit mûr,
Qui donc vous baignera de sang et d’eau
Pour vous guérir ?
Je laisserai percer mon cœur
Comme un fruit mûr.

* * * * * *


A Tenebrae service—an extraordinarily rich choral service with prayers and congregational singing— took place on Wednesday evening in Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica.

Tenebrae [which means "darkness"] is the name given to the celebration, with special ceremonies, of matins and lauds, the first two hours of the Divine Office, of the last three days of Holy Week. Originally celebrated after midnight, by the late Middle Ages their celebration was anticipated on the afternoon or evening of the preceding day in most places.

The structure of Tenebrae is the same for all three days. The first part of the service is Matins, which in its pre-1970 form is composed of three nocturns, each consisting of three psalms, a short versicle and response, a silent Pater Noster (Our Father), and three readings, each followed by a responsory. Pre-1970 Lauds consists of five psalms, a short versicle and response, and the Benedictus Gospel canticle, followed by Christus factus est, a silent Pater Noster, a devotional recitation of Psalm 50 (51), Miserere, and the appointed collect.

The principal Tenebrae ceremony is the gradual extinguishing of candles upon a stand in the sanctuary called a hearse. Eventually the Roman Rite settled on fifteen candles, one of which is extinguished after each of the nine psalms of Matins and the five of Lauds, gradually reducing the lighting throughout the service. The six altar candles are put out during the Benedictus, and then any remaining lights in the church.

The last candle is hidden beneath the altar, ending the service in total darkness. The strepitus (Latin for "great noise"), made by slamming a book shut, banging a hymnal or breviary against the pew, or stomping on the floor, symbolizes the earthquake that followed Christ's death, although it may have originated as a simple signal to depart.

Following the great noise, the candle which had been hidden from view is returned to the top of the hearse, signifying the return of Christ to the world with the Resurrection, and all depart in silence.

Photos: Jean-Claude Grant
* * * * * *


Remember your mercies, O Lord, and with your eternal protection sanctify your servants for whom Christ your Son, by the shedding of his Blood, established the Paschal Mystery. Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

2013 Chrism Mass Photos - Holy Thursday and the Lord's Supper - Ne t’étends pas sur cette croix

Basilique-cathédrale Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica – Ottawa, Ontario
The Chrism Mass, la Messe chrismale – le 26 mars, March 26, 2013
[Textes : Isaïe 61, 1-3, 6, 8-9; Psaume 88 (89); Apocalypse 1, 5-8; Luc 4, 16-21]

Mes chers frères prêtres, en particulier vous qui célébrez un anniversaire spécial cette année, mes chères sœurs et chers frères dans le Christ /My dear brother priests—especially you who are celebrating a special anniversary this year—and my dear sisters and brothers in Christ:


Today in the Gospel, we hear Jesus quote this passage from the prophet Isaiah. He applies its true meaning to himself. It foretold his divine mission, in his ministry, suffering, passion and death.

Tonight, the priests affirm again the promises they made when they were consecrated priests in union with our one High Priest, Jesus Christ. They serve in collaboration with the apostolic mission of the bishop. They carry on in the parish, the hospital, the jail, the long-term care facility, the same mission of Jesus Christ we heard about in the First Reading and the Gospel.

Les prêtres ‘’portent la Bonne Nouvelle aux pauvres, annoncent aux prisonniers qu’ils sont libres, aux aveugles qu’ils verront la lumière et aux opprimés la libération ‘’ (Luc 4, 18-19). Les personnes qui vivent en captivité à cause de leurs péchés sont pardonnées. Les personnes qui ne peuvent percevoir la présence de Dieu ressentent son amour. Aux personnes qui connaissent le désespoir, Jésus accorde sa miséricorde. Jésus Christ apporte à tous un espoir nouveau.

Le ministère du prêtre rend actuel la grâce qui sauve et qui transforme, la grâce que Jésus est venu apporter au monde. Cette force salvatrice nous est donnée par la Parole de Dieu et les sacrements de l’Église. Elle permet à chacun, chacune, des membres du peuple de Dieu de trouver les façons et la force de vivre en vrais disciples du Christ, d’en être ses témoins, de se mettre à son service.

L’Église utilise les huiles que nous consacrons ce soir pour préparer les catéchumènes pour leur baptême, oindre les nouveaux-baptisés, sceller les candidats à la Confirmation, consacrer les mains des prêtres et les évêques à leur ordination, pour guérir les malades et leurs apporter réconfort. Les huiles nous aident à révéler au monde l’amour de Dieu, Lui, le Tout-Puissant, qui continue de prendre soin de son peuple.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us that “anointing, in Biblical and other ancient symbolism, is rich in meaning: oil is a sign of abundance and joy; it cleanses (anointing before and after a bath) and limbers (the anointing of athletes and wrestlers); oil is a sign of healing, since it is soothing to bruises and wounds; and it makes radiant with beauty, health, and strength.” (CCC, n. 1293)

These three sacred oils that the bishop consecrates equip Christians for a life of discipleship: “the pre-baptismal anointing with the oil of catechumens signifies cleansing and strengthening; the anointing of the sick expresses healing and comfort. The post-baptismal anointing with sacred chrism in Confirmation and ordination is the sign of consecration. By Confirmation, Christians, that is, those who are anointed, share more completely in the mission of Jesus Christ and the fullness of the Holy Spirit with which he is filled, so that their lives may give off “the aroma of Christ” (CCC, n. 1294).

Marcher sur le chemin du Seigneur présente toujours un grand défi, peut-être aujourd’hui plus que jamais. À peine quelques jours après l’élection du pape François, certaines personnes avaient déjà commencé à le trouver trop ouvert aux changements, tandis que d’autres disaient qu’il n’apporterait vraiment rien de neuf. D’habitude, cela est un bon signe. Il faut savoir demeurer fidèle aux enseignements de l’Évangile du Christ tout en se donnant la liberté de lire les signes des temps.

Le bon disciple du Christ accepte de faire des sacrifices et d’autodiscipline. Il est fidèle à la pratique des sacrements – surtout les sacrements de la Réconciliation – s’adonne à la prière, lit les Écritures Saintes et cherche à suivre la volonté de Dieu.

Dans la première homélie qu’il a prononcé après son élection, le pape François rappela aux cardinaux réunis dans la Chapelle Sixtine que la Croix demeure au centre de toute vie chrétienne authentique : ‘‘Quand nous cheminons sans la Croix, quand nous édifions sans la Croix et quand nous confessons un Christ sans la Croix nous sommes mondains : nous sommes des prêtres, des évêques, des cardinaux, des papes, mais pas des disciples du Seigneur.’’

St. Paul reminds us that, as Christians, we are proud of what we believe. But, he cautions us, “May I never boast of anything except the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world” (Galatians 6.14)

The holy oils we use in the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, holy orders and the sacrament of the sick are beautiful, powerful, tangible outward signs revealing the action of the Holy Spirit. He cleanses, consecrates, and equips us to carry our cross with courage and conviction as Christian witnesses.

Our God-given mission in the New Evangelization is to proclaim the Gospel to a world hungry for Goodness, Beauty and Truth. Our world is hungry and thirsty for God. He alone can satisfy our deepest longings for love and meaning–the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Fr. Peter Monty, S.J. signs for the hearing-impaired

Le texte d’Isaïe et l’évangile de Luc nous parlent de la mission du Christ. L’Église, Corps du Christ, continue de porter cette mission au monde en notre temps. Elle accomplie cette mission à travers le ministère apostolique de l’évêque. Elle le fait à travers le ministère des prêtres rassemblés autour de lui et des baptisés qui collaborent chacun à leur manière à cette mission. Elle le fait au moyen des sacrements et de la proclamation de la Parole, cette Parole qui est ‘‘vivante et énergique et plus coupante qu'une épée à deux tranchants ’’ (Hébreux 4, 12). Elle le fait à travers le ministère de notre pape François.

Comme notre Bon Berger, notre Sauveur, notre ami et notre Seigneur, Jésus-Christ, nous pouvons dire, nous ses disciples, que nous aussi nous avons été consacrés pour ‘’porter la Bonne Nouvelle aux pauvres, annoncer aux prisonniers qu’ils sont libres, aux aveugles qu’ils verront la lumière et aux opprimés la libération ‘’ (Luc 4, 18-19).

Photos: Robert Du Broy, Paul Lauzon, Fr. Jonathan Blake
* * * * * *


Jacopo Bassano, The Last Supper (1542)
O God, who have called us to participate in this most sacred Supper, in which your Only Begotten Son, when about to hand himself over to death, entrusted to the Church a sacrifice new for all eternity, the banquet of his love, grant, we pray, that we may draw from so great a mystery, the fullness of charity and of life. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
* * * * * *

Ne t’étends pas sur cette croix,

Oh ! Jésus,
Ne t’étends pas sur cette croix
Jusqu’à mourir !
Si je ne m’étends pas sur cette croix
Comme un oiseau,
Qui donc vous gardera contre l’Enfer
Où vous alliez ?
Je m’étendrai sur cette croix
Comme un oiseau.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Ne laisse pas lier tes mains, Oh ! Jésus - Jesus is the Living One

Ne laisse pas lier tes mains,

Oh ! Jésus,
Ne laisse pas lier tes mains
Sans dire un mot !
Si je ne laisse pas lier mes mains
Comme un voleur,
Qui donc pourra détruire les prisons
Dont vous souffrez ?
Je laisserai lier mes mains
Comme un voleur.

* * * * * *

Easter Sunday (Year “C”) – March 31, 2013
[Texts: Acts 10.34a, 36-43 [Psalm 118]; Colossians 3.1-4 or 1 Corinthians 5.6b-8; Luke 24.1-12 or John 20.1-18]

Though the first reading is always taken from the Acts of the Apostles—Peter's summary of the post-resurrection experiences of the apostles—the other scriptural readings for Easter Sunday allow a variety of possibilit

The epistle reading may be the text from Colossians which invites believers raised with Christ in Baptism to “seek the things that are above, not the things that are on earth”. For already, in a manner that may only be apprehended by faith, Christians share the hidden life that Jesus, since his glorification in the completion of the paschal mystery, enjoys with God in heaven.

Alternatively, the second reading may be the striking passage from First Corinthians which proclaims that Christ, the paschal lamb of Christians, has been sacrificed. This calls disciples to a whole new way of keeping the Christian feast of Passover, that is, “with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth”.

[While in English, the name of our religious festival "Easter" comes from the name of the Germanic goddess of spring, other languages preserve a link with the Jewish feast of Pesach, e.g. French Pâques, Italian Pasqua, etc.]

The original participants in the Exodus ‘Passover’ were told to remove all leaven from their homes. Subsequently, among Jewish people a meticulous ritual evolved to systematically root out everything leavened. Somehow from this custom leaven came to represent false teaching or wicked conduct.

For Paul, the implications of the sacrifice of God's Son at the feast of Passover--whose death effected the forgiveness of sins—leads to consequences in the lives of disciples. Each Christian must, after undergoing Baptism which associates them with Christ's death and resurrection, commit himself or herself to living a life of upright conduct.

On Easter day, the gospel may be one of three choices: the proclamation of the resurrection featured at the Easter Vigil (this year the women and Peter's discovery of the empty tomb from Luke 24.1-12) or John's account of Mary Magdalene's encounter with the Risen Lord, whom she initially mistook for the gardener (John 20.1-18) or, at late afternoon or early evening Masses, the Lord Jesus' encounter with Cleopas and his companion on the Road to Emmaus (Luke 24.13-35).

Since the last-mentioned text will be featured on the Third Sunday of Easter, discussion of it will be reserved for then. For now, I will comment briefly on each of the other two gospel options.

All the resurrection accounts hint at the reversal of the tragedy of Jesus' death. The ritual of mourning and acts of respect toward the body of Jesus carried out by several faithful women turns to perplexity when they discover the empty tomb, then amazement at the angelic message and, finally, overwhelming joy when at last Jesus comes to meet them.

In Luke's account the message of the angels takes on a particular tone, “why do you look for the living among the dead?” There is an incompatibility now between Jesus and death. He shares eternal life with God and offers it to those who believe.

Then the angel reminds them that Jesus taught the divine necessity of his suffering (“Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners, and be crucified, and on the third day rise again?”)

The promise of God's power has been realized, but the story appears unbelievable to the disciples who probably thought the resurrection would come at the end-time. Peter, however, is unsure, for he has learned that Jesus' surprising sayings come true. He marvels at the linen grave cloths but does not yet come to faith. That must await his personal encounter with the Risen One.

The Fourth Evangelist suggests what this encounter means for each believer by elaborating Mary Magdalene's meeting with Jesus. We see the risen Lord is both different from the one Mary knew (she thought he was the gardener), yet the same person who knows her by name (“Mary!”). Jesus tells Mary that now she and others share a new relationship with God, who has become “your (plural) Father and your God”. Jesus commissions Mary as the ‘apostle (one sent) to the apostles’, to bring the good news of the resurrection to the entire world.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Tonight: Ottawa's Chrism Mass - Photos of the WYD Gathering

This evening, the annual Chrism Mass takes place in Ottawa's Notre Dame Cathedral. The holy oils that will be used for Baptism, Confirmation, Ordination of priests and bishops, the Anointing of the Sick will be consecrated.  Priests will renew the commitment they made at the time of their ordination in the presence of God's people.  Parishioners will come from across the Archdiocese to support the priests who are celebrating special ordination anniversaries this year; priests and people will be entrusted with the freshly-consecrated oils.

The following priests are celebrating significant anniversaries this year:

65 years of Ordination
Fr. Fernand Carrière May 16, 1948
Fr. Reginald G. Mac Neil May 23, 1948

60 years of Ordination
Fr. Jourdain Lavoie, O.P. May 31, 1953
Fr. Yvon Beaudoin, O.M.I. July 5, 1953
Fr. Gilles Leblanc, O.M.I. September 29, 1953

55 years of Ordination
Fr. Côme Chénier June 8, 1958
Archbishop Marcel A. Gervais May 31, 1958
Fr. Yvon Soucy May 18, 1958

50 years of Ordination
Fr. Marcel Dumais, o.m.i. March 9, 1963
Fr. Jacques Huppé June 8, 1963
Fr. Robert Laplante April 20, 1963
Fr. Bernard Lapointe June 8, 1963
Msgr. Gilles Lavergne, P.H. June 12, 1963
Fr. Marcel Léger June 13, 1963
Fr. William Marrevee, S.C.J. June 15, 1963
Fr. Kevin Milaney June 13, 1963
Fr. Jacques Desgrandchamps, O.S.M. August 25, 1963
Fr. Gilles De Grandpré, O.P. August 31, 1963

40 years of Ordination
Fr. Owen Carroll January 12, 1973
Fr. Simon Paul Cormier August 5, 1973

25 years of Ordination
Fr. Janusz Jajesniak, O.M.I. June 20, 1988
Fr. Albert Kaumba Mufwata August 20, 1988
Fr. François Kibwenge December 4, 1988
Fr. Robert Poole October 8, 1988

* * * * * *

Ne descends pas dans le jardin

Ne descends pas dans le jardin,
Oh ! Jésus,
Ne descends pas dans le jardin
Avant le jour !
Si je ne descends pas dans le jardin
En pleine nuit,
Qui donc vous mènera vers les soleils
Du Paradis ?
Je descendrai dans le jardin
En pleine nuit.

* * * * * *


Sunday afternoon's 5:15 Mass a Notre Dame Cathedral was designated a bilingual Mass to welcome youth from across the Archdiocese to our celebration of World Youth Day.

Following the Eucharist, there was a light supper served in the parish hall with a discussion on issues of faith of interest to the youth and young adults.  The evening concluded with a celebration of Night Prayer (Compline) in the Archbishops' Chapel.

Photos: courtesy of Paul Lauzon

* * * * * *


Almighty ever-living God, grant us so to celebrate the mysteries of the Lord's Passion that we may merit to receive your pardon. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.