Hope is always reborn

Taste silence and prayer

Whew! The crisis caused by the new Corona virus has not yet completely disappeared, but we can certainly breathe a sigh of relief. A sigh of relief, we must admit, after months of restrictions and misery. A period that seemed to last forever.

It certainly seems to us that an eternity has passed since the closure of Saint Joseph’s Oratory of Mount Royal on March 18. At least in our minds, everything seemed to have been planned for a very special pastoral year at the Oratory, when this pandemic came which would disrupt our personal, family, social and ecclesial lives. In fact, this situation only reminds us that we do not control all the variables in our life.

Of course, even though these were hard times for all humanity, we knew that we were sustained and enlightened by the faithfulness of the Lord, who “will not forsake his people; will not abandon his heritage.” (Psalm 93:14).

God always surprises us. He reaches out to us, renews us and always invites us to keep our gaze fixed on him with full confidence. This is what the apostle Peter understood perfectly when he states in his first letter: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Peter 1:3).

So here we are; the time has come, after these months of confinement, to resume our religious gatherings and sacramental practices, all the while ensuring the appropriate rules of social distancing. And with joy, and an attitude of profound thanksgiving, we celebrate at the Oratory the 10th anniversary of the canonization of Brother André, founder of this jewel of Canada’s spiritual and cultural heritage, dedicated to Saint Joseph.

What a joy it will be able to welcome you once again this summer at Saint Joseph’s Oratory of Mount Royal! We rarely take advantage of moments to recharge our faith, to grow spiritually, to find peace and to discern what really matters. Brother André, through the magnificent witness of his life, is a sure friend to help us in our Christian life to adopt an attitude that opens us to trust and hope. That is why we invite you, in the exuberance of the 10th anniversary of his canonization, to come and nourish your hope and strengthen your faith with others, through prayer and listening to the word of God. As Pope John Paul II said, “Where there is hope, prayer is born. Where prayer is born, hope recovers.” (Apostolic Journey to the Netherlands, 18 May 1985).

So, come on over!