During this past week, I was invited to attend an Open House at one of the schools that is associated with this parish. When I arrived (just a few moments before the scheduled beginning of all the festivities) there were so many other cars present that I had to search for what seemed an eternity to find a place to leave my car. Finally, I ended up parking around the block (something I’d never had to do on previous visits), and walk quickly toward the main entrance of the school. Because of crowd control, the teachers had locked all the other doors which might normally be accessible at other times of the day. By the time I managed to find my way to the gymnasium, there was almost nowhere to sit and it seemed as though all the students were present … and this time they had brought their parents along with them.
I wasn’t surprised to see the teachers. I wasn’t surprised to see the principal … I wasn’t even surprised when she invited me to join her at the podium so that we could begin the formal part of the evening. No, the surprise that was waiting for me didn’t happen until most of the students had left the gym and made their way to their respective classrooms, parents in tow. Since this time was primarily meant for parents to meet the teachers and to get an overview of the way things run from day to day in their children’s classrooms, I chose to stay in the gym, waiting for the eventual return of the masses. While I waited, I had a moment to chat with some of the other adults who were there: support staff, members of the Parent Advisory Council … and one other family.
I was standing near a table where various articles of clothing (which were being referred to as spirit wear) were on display. Parents were approaching along with their children in order to verify the sizes of sweatpants, long-sleeved tee shirts and hooded jackets (otherwise referred to as hoodies). The idea was that they would subsequently be able to order the articles they desired (presumably in the correct sizes). One mother approached the table accompanied by her son. She was asking questions about the sizes, but it was evident that English was not her first language. She looked curiously at the indications of sizes marked on the inside tags of the clothing: XL, M, S … there were no Ls for some reason. As I continued to listen from a distance, trying to assist her with her quest, I noticed that she would speak to her son (who I presumed from his size to be one of the students) in a language which sounded like Spanish (although they were speaking so quickly that at times it was difficult for me to be sure. A little while later, a man arrived and conversed with both of them in the same language. They spoke to each other in this language, but were careful to speak to me and to others around them in English. Finally, as they turned to go, I ventured a greeting: Mucho gusto! (Nice
to meet you!)
They all stopped and looked at me in disbelief. The father spoke first: Espanol? I told him that I speak fluently in a few languages, and that I’m hoping to learn more Spanish. We chatted for a while longer, and eventually parted with a promise that their child will help me to learn more Spanish if I help him to practice his English (and maybe even his French).
During the month of August 2014, a competition known as the Ice Bucket Challenge went viral. I had heard about this challenge but didn’t begin thinking seriously about it until my four-year-old-niece issued a challenge for me to pour ice-cold water over my head.
A few hours after the challenge had been issued, I came across an online post entitled Catholics and the Ice Bucket Challenge which points out that there may be some moral questions about how funds donated to the ALS Association are allocated. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), otherwise known as Lou Gehrig’s disease is a neurodegenerative disorder which is characterized by muscle spasticity, and rapidly progressive weakness due to muscle wasting which ultimately results in loss of speech, ability to swallow and to breathe.
The research into possible causes of this disease focuses on genetics and recent scientific discoveries have made it possible to consider stem cells as a possible source for the eventual cure of this disease. Stem cells are the precursors of all cells in the human body, possessing the ability to replicate themselves and to repair and replace other tissues. Since stem cells are undifferentiated, they can be manipulated in a laboratory to turn them into a number of different types of cells or tissues. Stem cells can be found in adults, in fetuses and in blastocysts – the precursors to embryos.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church lauds the value of such research: One must hold as licit, procedures carried out on the human embryo which respect the life and integrity of the embryo and do not involve disproportionate risks for it, but are directed toward its healing, the improvement of the condition of health or its individual survival (CCC, 2275) but the Catechism also goes on to say: It is immoral to produce human embryos intended for exploitation as disposable biological material.
The origins of pouring cold water onto someone’s head as a fundraiser for charity are unknown and have been attributed to various sources. In mid-2013, there is evidence of a Cold Water challenge but it wasn’t until mid-May 2014 that the idea of soaking participants with cold water and donating to charity were associated, but in its earliest evolution, there were many different charities involved. Some Catholics who have chosen to participate in the Ice Bucket Challenge choose to make donations to charities other than ALS, out of a concern that their donations might be used for research which involves practices judged to be immoral by the Church’s teaching authority.
Aware of this objection, the ALS Association offers various options for donations, thereby allowing the donors to determine how their gifts should be used, including the funding of ALS research or to assist ALS patients and their families who face the challenges of living with the disease.
By: Father Tony
ARISE Season 3 is coming soon…
The Parish CWL (Catholic Women’s League) is now making preparations for the Fall Tea, Bazaar & Penny Sale which will be held on October 18, 2014 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. Cost for luncheon is $5 per adult; $3 per child; and free for children less than 5 years of age.
We invite all parishioners to help us. We are in need of prizes for the Penny Sale table. Prizes (new items only) can be small appliances, electronic gadgets, hand crafted items, glassware, china, ceramics, personal gift packs, boxed games, hard covered books, framed pictures, sporting gear equipment or memorabilia, tool sets, bedding & sheet sets, blankets, Halloween & Christmas decorations, a collection of food items to make up food baskets, gift certificates for services and restaurants, and monetary donations.
We also need donations of knitting, sewing, craft items and baking for the Bazaar.
Please bring your Penny Sale prizes before October 15th to the Parish Office or call Marcelle at 705-475-1851 for pick up. All baked goods and food items are to be delivered to the church on Friday, October 17 between 9AM-1PM, or morning of Saturday, October 18.
This project is our ONLY FUND RAISER for the year. The proceeds go to many deserving charities. We know we can depend on St. Peter’s parishioners to help us make this Bazaar a HUGE SUCCESS!
ATTENTION 2014 HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES
The following bursaries, administered by St. Peter’s Catholic Women’s League, are available to any student that graduated in June 2014 from grade 12 (or who has already graduated in 2013) and is continuing their education for the very first time at a community college or university:
- Angeline McCarthy Memorial Bursary ($500)
- Agnes Dufaure Memorial Bursary ($500)
You may apply for both bursaries; however, you must be the daughter or son, granddaughter or grandson of a registered member of St. Peter’s Parish.
If you are interested in applying, bursary criteria and application forms may be obtained from the Parish Office. Closing date for submission of applications is Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 4:00pm.
The Sacrament of First Reconciliation and First Communion Parents Only Meeting (no children required) at St. Peter’s Parish Hall on Wednesday, September 17, 2014 at 7:00 pm
If you have children in Grade 3 or older and wish the Sacraments of First Reconciliation and First Communion for them, please plan to attend this meeting. If your child was not baptized at St. Peter’s, we will need a copy of their baptism certificate.
Students will soon be beginning another year of study!
The first day of the new school year will be Tuesday, September 2, 2014. JK & SK begins on September 8, with staggered entry for JK students
Nipissing-Parry Sound Catholic District School Board schools are open for registrations from August 25 to 29. For more information, visit www.npsc.ca
Welcome to our St. Peter the Apostle Parish Blog!
We are currently seeking parishioners to write blog posts for our website.
Not sure what to write about? Here are some suggestions:
- Upcoming events or news reports on events past
- Funny/Heart-warming St. Peter’s stories
- A good joke (be sure to attribute if you found it somewhere)
- What was your experience when you first came to St. Peter’s? Why did you stay
- Why did you get involved with a certain ministry? What has been the results in your life/the life of others? (ex. why did you do ARISE? Why do you sing in the choir? How did you become a lector?)
- Reflection on the mass readings for the upcoming week (be sure to get me this us well in advance (a few weeks) so Fr. Tony can have a look through!
- Reflection for certain liturgical seasons or feast days (ex. Lent, Advent, a special saint you want people to know about)
Sound interesting? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know what you are interested in writing! We can provide you editing, suggestions and clarification where needed. Happy Writing!