Friday, December 27, 2013

Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God/New Year's Day Mass Schedule

The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, is a holy day of obligation in Canada.  A number of Masses are scheduled for this feast for the convenience of our parishioners and friends.  A special Holy Hour of Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is also planned to bring the current year to a close and to bring in the new one!  All are welcome to attend!
Tuesday, December 31, 2013
5:00 p.m. Anticipated Mass for Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God
11:00 p.m. New Year's Eve Holy Hour followed by Benediction
Wednesday, January 1, 2014  
The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God
10:00 a.m. Mass
7:00 p.m. Mass
The 7 p.m. Mass for the solemnity has been added this year especially for those who might not otherwise be able to make it to the other Masses.  Many blessings for a happy and holy New Year!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas Mass Schedule

Tuesday, December 24

5 p.m. Christmas Eve Mass with Children's Procession and Presentation. 
Carol singing will begin 15 minutes prior to Mass.
Midnight Mass with youth choir. 
Carols to begin at 11:30 p.m..

Wednesday, December 25

Christmas Morning Mass at 10 a.m. with carol singing beginning 15 minutes prior to Mass.

The Feast of St. Stephen
Thursday, December 26
Mass at 9 a.m.
The Feast of St. John, Apostle and Evangelist
Friday, December 27
Mass at 9 a.m.
The Feast of the Holy Innocents
Saturday, December 28
Mass at 9 a.m.
Feast of the Holy Family
Mass at 5 p.m. on Saturday, December 28,
and Sunday, December 29, at 10 a.m.
Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God  (Holy Day of Obligation)
Mass at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, December 31,
and Wednesday, January 1, at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m.
A Holy Hour of Adoration will be held from 11 p.m. until Midnight
on New Year's Eve (December 31).

A Christmas Prayer
May Christmas fill you with its song of hope.
May Christ make his presence felt on your many paths.
Throughout your hours of sadness and your hours of joy,
may you remain confident in the love of the Father,
the presence of the Son by your side,
and the support of the Holy Spirit in your life!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Mary of Nazareth...the Thunder Bay

Mary of Nazareth is coming to our town on Monday, December 16, at 7 p.m. at the St. Patrick's School Auditorium, 621 S. Selkirk Street.  Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased through our parish office.  Watch the trailer at .   

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Sweet Relief...

Our recent Christmas bake sale featured a scaled-down gingerbread replica of our church, thanks to the creativity and generousity of a couple of our parishioners. 
A raffle was held for the gingerbread church in support of the relief effort in the Philippines.  A donation of $200 on behalf of our parish will be made to support the cause.

"How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts! 
My soul longs, indeed it faints for the courts of the Lord;
my heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God.
Even a sparrow finds a home, and the swallow a nest for herself,
where she may lay her young, at your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God.
Happy are those who live in your house, ever singing your praise"
(Psalm 84:1-4)

Some Inspiration For Your "Advent Soundtrack"...


Friday, December 6, 2013

Blessing of Christmas Tree in the Home

To help make your preparation for Christmas more meaningful, here is a prayer of blessing for the Christmas tree as it is officially illuminated:

All make the sign of the cross as the leader says:   Blessed be the name of the Lord.

All reply: Now and for ever.     

One of those present reads a text of sacred Scripture, for example:  Brothers and sisters, listen to the words of the apostle Paul to Titus (3:4-7):  But when the kindness and generous love of God our savior appeared, not because of any righteous deeds we had done but because of his mercy, he saved us through the bath of rebirth and renewal by the holy Spirit, whom he richly poured out on us through Jesus Christ our savior, so that we might be justified by his grace and become heirs in hope of eternal life.

Or: Genesis 2:4-9—The tree of life in the center of the garden.
Isaiah 9:1-6—A son is given to us.
Ezekiel 17:22-24—I will plant a tender shoot on the mountain heights of Israel.

 The leader of prayer says the following prayer:    Lord our God, we praise you for the light of creation: the sun, the moon, and the stars of the night. We praise you for the light of Israel: the Law, the prophets, and the wisdom of the Scriptures. We praise you for Jesus Christ, your Son: he is Emmanuel, God-with-us, the Prince of Peace, who fills us with the wonder of your love.  Lord God, let your blessing come upon us as we illumine this tree. May the light and cheer it gives be a sign of the joy that fills our hearts. May all who delight in this tree come to the knowledge and joy of salvation. We ask this through Christ our Lord. All: Amen.

Or: Holy Lord, we come with joy to celebrate the birth of your Son, who rescued us from the darkness of sin by making the cross a tree of life and light. May this tree, arrayed in splendor, remind us of the life-giving cross of Christ, that we may always rejoice in the new life that shines in our hearts. We ask this through Christ our Lord. All: Amen.  

Conclude with the Sign of the Cross. 

Prayer adapted from: Book of Blessings by Prepared by International Commission on English in the Liturgy A Joint Commission of Catholic Bishops' Conferences, The Liturgical Press, Collegeville, Minnesota, 1989

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Uncovering the Past...

A surprise was in store after carpet was removed from the church sacristy as part of our ongoing renovations. A floor "mural" of the Slovak national emblem made from floor tiles is once again brought to light!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Christmas Bake Sale

The Annual Christmas Bake Sale organized by the Catholic Women's League of our parish will be held on Sunday, December 8, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. 

In conjunction with the bake sale, two raffles will be held.  The first is for a beautiful 11-piece Nativity set (pictured below), and the second is for a handcrafted gingerbread house.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Joy of the Gospel...

The full text can currently be found by visiting .

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Carmelite Info Night...

The Superior General of the Discalced Carmelite Order in Rome has approved the official canonical recognition of the Secular Order of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel Community here in Thunder Bay. 

We extend our congratulations to the members of the local community!

An evening of information about the Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites will be held on Tuesday, November 12, 2013, following the 7 p.m. Mass at St. Peter's Church for all who are interested.  Light refreshments will be served afterwards.  All are invited!

Memorial Sunday Momento

A couple of (somewhat fuzzy) photos (due to their being enlarged) from after the annual ceremony of remembrance for deceased parishioners and friends are posted below.  This ceremony is organized every year by members of our parish Catholic Women's League.

CWL Memorial Book alongside a vase with flowers presented by members and friends of the deceased loved ones.

The priest and the president.

Many thanks to all who assisted and took part in this year's service!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Remembering our Dearly Departed

This morning a small crowd of parishioners braved the coolness and joined in a prayer service at St. Patrick's/Mountainview Cemetery. 

The ceremony took place at the priests' plot, and afterwards individuals dispersed to make visits to their respective family plots. 

The monument at the priests' plot

The graves of two priests who served the East End for many years.

On Friday, November 8, at 10 a.m., a similar service will be held at St. Andrew's Cemetery.
This Sunday, November 10, a memorial service will be held just before the 10 a.m. Mass (at aprrox. 9:40) in honour of all whose funeral services have taken place over the past year through our parish.  All are welcome to attend.

Dinner is Served...

In what has become a twice-a-year-tradition, parishioners prepare a dinner for the local Shelter House.  Our trademark St. Peter's shepherd's pie is always a hit at the shelter where upwards of 500 meals are served daily.  Thanks to all our organizers and volunteers!

Peels of laughter!  Who new volunteering could be so much fun?!?

Mission Accomplished...

Our Year of Faith Mission on Living a faith-filled life wrapped up last week with some refreshments and social time in our parish hall.  Our guest presenter, Mr. Brian O'Neel, offered insights into the life of St. Peter, our parish patron, the stories of the saints, and the meaning of the New Evangelization.  Two books by O'Neel - "39 New Saints You Should Know" and "Saint Who? 39 Holy Unkowns" - can be found in our parish resource cabinet.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Mission Mass Schedule

With our Year of Faith Mission underway this week, our weekday Mass schedule has changed slightly.  On Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, Mass will be celebrated in the evening at 7 p.m.  See the post below for more details.  The rest of the week follows the normal schedule.

On a Mission

This week, the long-awaited Year of Faith Mission will begin! The three themes for the three evenings are centred on living a faith-filled life. 

Each evening Mass will be celebrated at 7 p.m., and the special presentation by our guest speaker, Mr. Brian O'Neel, will follow.  Come early and spend some time in prayer during Holy Hour beginning at 6 p.m.

Monday, October 28
"St. Peter: A Man of Courage and a Model of Faith"
Tuesday, October 29
"Holy Helpers: Saintly Inspiration for Today's Christians"
Wednesday, October 30
"Be Not Afraid: The Church and the New Evangelization"

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Two-Bit Time!

On Sunday, October 27, the Catholic Women's League of our parish is hosting its annual two-bit auction.  Tickets are $5 each.  Many great prizes to be won!  The fun begins at 1 p.m.. See you there! 

Friday, October 11, 2013

A Year of Faith Reflection...

Another weekend approaches.  Once again we will gather for the Sunday Eucharist. Once again we will recite the Creed.  The video below, from "Outside da Box," offers a few important questions for reflection: When you recite the Creed, are you being real or are you being a robot? Do you even know what you are saying? Is there a difference between believing there is a God and believing in God?

Happy Year of Faith!
Pray it.  Live it.  Love it.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Coffee Sunday...

Coffee is on us this Sunday, October 13, after the 10 a.m. Mass.  
Join us in the parish hall for some fellowship and refreshments!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

"So faith comes from what is heard..."

"and what is heard comes through the word of Christ....
For 'Their voice has gone out to all the earth,
and their words to the ends of the world'".
(Romans 10:17-18)

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Year of Faith Mission!

We are excited to announce an upcoming series on living a faith-filled life, to be presented in our parish by Mr. Brian O'Neel, author of "39 Saints You Should Know" and "Saint Why? 39 Holy Unknowns". 

Mr. O'Neel has appeared several times on EWTN and is a regular guest on both the Relevant Radio and EWTN Global Satellite radio networks.  A writer and editor who lives in the Philadelphia area, he and his wife are the proud parents of six children. 

The outline of themes for this special Year of Faith Mission is:

"St. Peter: A Man of Courage and Model of Faith" - Monday, October 28
"Holy Helpers: Saintly Inspiration for Today's Christian"  - Tuesday, October 29
"Be Not Afraid: The Church and the New Evangelization" - Wednesday, October 30

Each evening a Holy Hour will be held at 6 p.m. followed by Mass at 7 p.m. 
The special presentations will follow Mass. 
All are welcome!  For more information, please contact our parish office.

The First 6 Months... A Papacy in Review

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

September 7 Peace Vigil

Today, dear brothers and sisters, I wish to make add my voice to the cry which rises up with increasing anguish from every part of the world, from every people, from the heart of each person, from the one great family which is humanity: it is the cry for peace!....”  
(Pope Francis, Sunday Angelus on September 1, 2013)

Pope Francis has proclaimed that Saturday, September 7, the vigil of the birth of Mary, Queen of Peace, is to be for the whole Church a day of fasting and prayer for peace in Syria, the Middle East, and throughout the world.
You are invited to

A Prayer Vigil for Peace
at St. Peter’s Church, 615 Connolly Street,
this Saturday, September 7, 2013.

Eucharistic Adoration from 7 p.m. until Midnight.

8 p.m. Praise and Worship

9 p.m. Scriptural Rosary

10 p.m. Reading of Scripture


All are welcome.   Stay as long as you want.

Spread the word.  Pray for peace.

“Peace is a precious gift, which must be promoted and protected.”
Pope Francis

Ordinations to the Permanent Diaconate

On Saturday, September 7, 2013, at 5 p.m. at St. Patrick's Cathedral, Andre Nicol of St. Andrew's Parish, Larry Kurec of Our Lady Queen of Poland Parish, and Stephan Bilynskyy of St. Agnes Parish will be ordained to the permanent diaconate.  Natalia Bilynskyy will also be mandated in the Diocesan Ministry of Service at this Mass. Everyone in welcome to attend.  Please remember these men and their families in your prayers as they assume this new ministry for the Church.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Returning Home: Our Destination and our Starting Point

Special thanks to friends and family who prayed us home!
We arrived in good time and in good shape Sunday evening, thankful for the blessings of our pilgrimage but eager to return to the familiar!
Having completed the Year of Faith pilgrimage, we continue the pilgrimage of life.
Our lives as Christians is made a sacred journey by the gift of faith, the divine light which guides our footsteps in this life and allows us safe passage into the next.

Bon Voyage!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Day Seven...Homeward Bound

After a solid night's sleep at the Lord Elgin Hotel in Ottawa, we got the day rolling with a 7 a.m. Mass in a conference room that was set aside for our use.  Then we enjoyed a very un-penitential breakfast before boarding the bus to begin the journey home.  A couple of videos, moments of prayer and the occasional rest-stop helped pass the time. 
We are now in Sault-Ste-Marie, settling in for the night after our "official" wind-up banquet.  One thing we haven't lacked on our pilgrimage is solid nourishment, both physical and spiritual!  Tomorrow will find us on the road for most of the day.  We look forward to celebrating Mass in Nipigon before arriving back in Thunder Bay in the evening. 
Our overnight accommodations in Ottawa...

Taking on the ruff roads of life... 

Friday, August 23, 2013

Day Six... The Adventure Continues...

Today's journey was made that much more exciting due to a couple of missed turns on the free-way.  We found our way, however, to all our planned destinations, and then some!  The day began in the sanctuary of Notre-Dame-du-Cap with an early morning Mass followed by breakfast.  Then we were on the road again to visit the tomb of St. Kateri. 

We are now in Ottawa, spending some time resting, reminiscing and preparing for the next two days on the road.  Our pilgrimage has been a time a great blessing.  We have seen much and experienced even more.  As the end of the pilgrimage approaches, though, I think we will all agree that there is no place like home! 

With prayers....
     The Pilgrims

This morning's 6:30 a.m. Mass was celebrated in the
Stone Chapel of Our Lady of the Rosary at Notre-Dame-du-Cap...

Hungry pilgrims take in lunch at a restaurant close to St. Francis Xavier Mission in Kahnawake, Quebec, where the tomb of St. Kateri Tekakwitha is found.

This picture needs no caption...

The Steeple of St. Francis Xavier Mission

The interior ceilings of the Mission, decorated with religious art and murals.
Vivid Stations of the Cross, with inscriptions in the Iroquois language.

An ocean freighter sales Westward through the St. Lawrence Seaway while pilgrims watch on...
The stunning interior of Notre-Dame Basilica in Ottawa.

The twin towers of Notre Dame stand on guard over the national capital.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

On the road again...Day Five!

This morning we said our farewells to the beautiful shrine of Ste. Anne de Beaupre after celebrating a morning Mass in the Basilica Crypt Chapel of the Immaculate Conception.  We then boarded the bus for a quick drive into Quebec City where we visited the Basilica of Notre Dame du Quebec.  This Basilica is the oldest continuously running parish in Canada, and possibly North America.  Its congregation, in union with the Archdiocese of Quebec, is in the midst of preparations to celebrate its 350th anniversary. 

After praying at the tomb of Blessed Francois Laval, the first bishop of "New France", we all had a few hours to spend on our own, walking through old Quebec City and taking in the most of its "old country" charm.  We regrouped at the Basilica and re-boarded the bus, this time bound for the shrine of Notre-Dame-du-Cap which is situated on the outskirts of Trois-Rivieres.

We rest here overnight and look forward to taking part in a candle-light procession through the grounds of this amazing sanctuary.

Due to technical difficulties with the blogger's camera, today's pictures include a couple of images since our arrival at Notre-Dame-du-Cap.

The main Shrine of Notre-Dame-du-Cap

The Stone Church, dedicated to Mary, Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, and built in 1720.

Above the main entrance to the Sanctuary,
Holy Mary is pictured offering a welcome to the pilgrims.

A reflective pool on the sanctuary grounds.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Day Four...Our Day at Beaupre...

What a great day it was at Ste. Anne de Beaupre!  The day began in earnest with Mass in the main Basilica.  Much to his surprise, Fr. Terry was asked to be the main celebrant for the Mass!  It was an honour which will be long remembered.  Mass was followed by a tour of the basilica courtesy of one of the shrine volunteers.  We then went our separate ways in search of lunch and had free time for the remainder of the afternoon. 
Many of our group took part in an outdoor 3 o'clock Way of the Cross which was delayed slightly as a French-speaking group had arranged for the same devotion at the same time and the same place.  At the foot of the cross at the twelfth station, pilgrims place a small stone which they had carried with them from day one.  This stone represented the personal intentions each carried with them on the journey.
Around 8 p.m. we took part in a candle-light procession with the Blessed Sacrament to bring the day's program to a close.  Morning comes early, especially with Mass scheduled for our group at 7 a.m. in the Crypt Chapel of the Basilica.
As allows, here are a couple photos from the day:
Taking a stroll along one of the main streets of Ste. Anne de Beaupre

The shrine itself, dedicated to St. Anne, the mother of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
and built for the greater glory of God.

Preparing to make the Way of the Cross

Statue of Our Lady in front of the chapel of the Holy Stairs, which houses a replica of the stairs which Jesus ascended before being condemned by Pontius Pilate.  Pilgrims make their way up the stairs on their knees while meditating on the Lord's Passion.
Tomorrow, we say farewell to Ste. Anne de Beaupre and make our way toward Cap-de-Madeleine by way of Quebec City.  Depending on the internet service at tomorrow's accommodations we may or may not be able to post updates.  However, we will hope for the best!
With love and prayers....
The Pilgrims.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Day Three...Shrines of Quebec

Well, folks, it's day three and we're still going strong!  We've arrived now in Ste. Anne de Beaupre where we'll be staying until Thursday morning.  Many of our group are looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow.  We gather for the rosary at quarter to nine and will take part in an English Mass in the main basilica afterwards.

Today's journey included visits to the Oratory of St. Joseph in Montreal, the largest shrine to St. Joseph in the world, and the home of the tomb of St. Andre Bessette, also known as the Miracle Man of Montreal.  It was due to his great vision, faith, and devotion to St. Joseph that this shrine became a reality.

Before leaving Montreal, we drove by the Cathedral of Mary, Queen of the World, a scaled-down replica of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.  We also had the chance to visit and pray at the Basilica of Notre-Dame, a beautiful Gothic church and a monument to the faith of the people of Quebec.

Thanks again to everyone for your prayers!  Below are a few images from today...

A view of the Oratory from the Guest Centre

St. Joseph Oratory from the main entrance

Our pilgrims gather for a group photo...

Notre Dame Basilica, a view of the sanctuary...

Sustenance awaits at Ste. Anne de Beaupre...