By Fr. David Purcell, C.Ss.R.
“The Spirit is a-movin” in the larger centres. Confreres at St. Patrick’s monastery in Toronto hosted a Come and See Retreat on the 7th & 8th of June.
Again, what generosity! The SERVE program was ending; there was a big Sunday BBQ in the courtyard for all the families involved with First Communion and Confirmation from St. Patrick’s parish; Our Lady of Mount Carmel parish is in the middle of a big archdiocesan fundraising project; and the novitiate community was serving at the Mass on Sunday.
In the midst of this, they all made space and time to advertise in their bulletins, and make personal invitations for men to come and enquire about the Redemptorists. Five men attended the weekend retreat. As you may know, two of these men, Christopher (2nd from right in picture above) and Andrew (second from left in picture above) will be Live-in Enquirers at Redeemer House in September.
Our Grande Prairie community was also very animated by the Holy Spirit. Without my direct help and presence, they planned, made personal invitations, and then hosted a Come and See evening on the 13th of June. Three men sat down with our confreres to talk about religious life over supper. This is a great act of generosity – again in the midst of busy lives – to devote all that time and energy to promoting our missionary vocation in Grande Prairie. Not only is that a big help to me as the co-ordinator of vocation ministry, but ultimately it is a great gift to our whole community of Redemptorists and to the Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan. We know for example, that two young men who have been encouraged by the Redemptorists through previous vocational discernment activities will be studying this fall in the seminary for the Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan.
I thank the Edmonton community for their continual prayers. Ever faithful to hourly prayer and devotion, these men are continually interceding for our ministries and especially for our vocation ministry. During my visit, they were especially praying through the Novena to Our Mother of Perpetual Help during the last days of June.
They are shown here (except for Fr. Joe Murphy, Fr. Alan MacGregor, and Fr. Ed Kennedy who live away from Villa Marguerite) with Sisters of Charity of Montreal and some other residents of Villa Marguerite in their small chapel. Every Sunday they pray for more people to join the Grey Nuns and the Redemptorists.