Sunday, April 12, 2009

Beginning the Journey--Good Friday, April 10, 2009

The title of this blog is the journey of a bishop and it began with "the Way of the Cross" this morning from St. Patrick's Basilica through major sites in Ottawa (Sparks Street Mall, Parliament Hill) to Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica. Estimates by organizers from Communion and Liberation put the number of pilgrims somewhere between 800 and 1000: there was great devotion. Though we had to modify our path due to the protest by Tamils seeking Canadian government action for their relatives and friends in Sri Lanka, the close encounter of our two groups was peaceful. The drumming ceased as we prayed and sang and some of the demonstrators, being Christians/Catholics, joined our remembrance of the Lord's Passion briefly....

In the afternoon, the Office commemorating the Lord's Passion was extraordinarily reverent; I was moved to realize the honour of shepherding the hundreds who came to venerate the Cross in the cathedral, those who presented themselves for confession or stayed to pray. As I was praying one of the faithful asked if I would give him a rosary I had blessed; it was a joy to do so.