World Mission Sunday is celebrated on Sunday October 18 this year. Because of our baptism into the life and love of Jesus, each of us shares in the mission of the Church. Jesus described that mission of the Church as He ascended into heaven: “Go, therefore, make disciples of all nations; baptize them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teach them to observe all the commands I gave you.” (Matthew 28.19)
The Canadian Bishops have stated that “all parishes should take seriously their responsibility of all believers to spread the Gospel.” They suggested that prayer and acts of self-denial to deepen that prayer be offered for the missionary work of God’s people.
As we appreciate the Church’s mission and the call for each of us to be part of it, may we financially support with generosity the World Mission Day second collection. The Vatican has a group that spreads out the proceeds of this special collection to countries around the world to support missionary work. Canada receives some of this collection for our parishes in the North and in isolated places.
St. Paul encouraged Christians “to pray that the Lord’s message may spread quickly, and be received with honour.” (2 Thessalonians 3.1). Our celebration of World Mission Sunday helps us to do that. May we promote missions every other day as well for God’s glory and the salvation of every soul!
In our Catholic culture, October is the month of the Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary. We are encouraged as individuals, families and parishes to pray in this way.
Some people have asked why we offer the Rosary near Mass time.
One reason, of course, is that there’s more people that are in the Cathedral around that time. Praying together reminds us that God saves us through our participation in the faith community and not as independent free lancers.
Another reason is explained by Bishop Peter J. Elliott, a very wise liturgical expert. He explains that the Rosary is not primarily a Marian devotion. He says “it is a Christ centered method of meditation in the Marian form.” He further explains that the Rosary takes us through the saving mysteries i.e. the Incarnation, the Passion and Resurrection of Jesus Christ with and through His mother Mary.
Now in the Eucharist, the mysteries of joy, sorrow and glory are made present in the Lord’s sacrifice. So Bishop Elliott says that the Rosary in itself “can be related to the Eucharist.” Our heart is warmed up to cherish the service and sacrifice of Jesus as we pray the Rosary together.