Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Jubilees and Movies

On Sunday, October 29, three of us from our community attended Mass at 9:30 AM at St. Bernard's Parish Church on West Lawrence Avenue in Toronto. The parish was hosting the Mass for the 25th anniversary of religious profession for two Sister Disciples of the Divine Master, Sister Mary Emmanuel from the Philippines, and Sister John Paula from Poland. The Sister Disciples (or Pious Disciples as they are officially called) operate a large Liturgical Apostolate Center on Pine Street near Lawrence. They have an extensive selection of religious art and statues, religious pictures, rosaries and many other things, besides clerical vestments. The Disciples profess a special devotion to Jesus Master in the Holy Eucharist, to service to the priesthood and to the promotion of the liturgy. Some of the Sisters also help to train the children in the parish for sacramental preparation. The Disciples are one of our "sister" Congregations. The Founder, Blessed James Alberione, wanted the Sister Disciples to be a spiritual powerhouse praying on our behalf while we Daughters of St. Paul are busy about the communications' ministry. The Sisters also offer prayers in reparation for the evil caused by the misuse of the media. While we Daughters of St. Paul have a daily hour of Eucharistic adoration, the Sister Disciples spend two hours of adoration before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament every day. The Founder felt that the media ministry which we perform is so necessary and so urgent that more prayer is required to make all our work spiritually and materially fruitful.
I hope the Sisters will email us some photos so I can post them for you to see. Both Sisters were radiant with happiness on that jubilee day. During the homily, Father Paul (Raj--not sure how to spell his last name) asked the Sisters to say just a couple of words to describe how they felt. Both Sister Emmanuel and Sr. John Paula said "Jesus makes us happy!" That looked so obviously true.
The Sisters hosted a very nice reception at their convent which is above the Liturgical Apostolate Center. The Sister Disciples produce some very beautiful vestments and high quality altar cloths, etc.
Then on Monday night we had our October Movie--Faith and Film night. Sister Hosea Marie used the movie "Holes" as the discussion starter. She related the movie to a passage from St. John's gospel. We had about 50 people who came to see the film. It was nice to see a really wide variety of age groups present. The November movie will be "Ladder 49."
Have you seen any posters about the movie "The Nativity?" In case you haven't, the movie will be released in the USA (and probably Canada) on December 1. Our Sisters at our publishing house, Pauline Books & Media in Boston, worked closely with the film producers to publish two Catholic accompaniments to the film: a Nativity Film Guide, and a book on Mary. One of our Toronto Sisters, Sister Marie Paul Curley, has an article in the Mary book. A lay Pauline Cooperator, Marilyn, also contributed an article to the Marian title. (I forgot how to spell Marilyn's last name.) Be sure to see the movie!
When I get some more photos and information on the movies, I will be adding them to the blog.
Have a blessed day--Happy All Hallow's Eve, and Happy All Saints Day!

Friday, October 27, 2006

A Very Busy Week

This past week has been a very busy one. Last Thursday's talk had a nice turnout. People seemed very interested in knowing more about the Apostle Paul and the idea of his "living today" through our lives. As soon as I get some photos I will post them for you.
Our book center (centre is the Canadian way to spell it) is a very busy place. People have a thirst for good reading, and they know where to find it here on Dufferin Street. This has been a full week, and it is not over yet! Usually Saturdays are very busy. I take care of the Italian section of books and a/v's in our centre. We just received a large shipment of titles from Italy. I have been calling people whose Italian orders have finally arrived. Sometimes I watch Italian TV, news or other programs to keep my Italian "aggiornata"--up-to-date. Toronto has a big number of Italian immigrants and Catholic parishes which have Italian Masses and other Italian services. One website says that Italian is the unofficial second language of Canada. French, of course, is the "first" and official second language. In Quebec it is the first for many people. As soon as we drove into the Province of Quebec we noticed the street names were different. French is first there.
Toronto is a very cosmopolitan city. The transit system offers help in about 90 different languages. On the bus or subway one can hear all kinds of languages being spoken: Chinese, Arabic, Italian, Spanish and English! I think St. Paul would have enjoyed working in such a "global" city as Toronto. God bless you! Thanks for reading this news.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

More on St. Paul

As I prepare for my talk on St. Paul Living Today, I am getting to know more about Saint Paul, and others too. Sister Martha lent me a copy of a small book on the life of Sister Nazarena Mornado. She was the novice mistress of the Daughters of St. Paul in Rome for many years. Sister was also one of the first writers and editors among the Daughters of St. Paul. As you may or may not know, the Daughters of St. Paul were founded in 1915 to "Be St. Paul Living Today" by spreading the Gospel message with the media of today. The first modern media was the printing press. Johann Gutenburg never dreamed of the revolution he began back in the late 1400's with his moveable type printing press. In the early days of our founding, Italy was flooded with lots of newspapers and magazines that we would call today "The Yellow Press." (At least that's the name given to the phenomena by one of my history teachers.) The Founder Blessed James Alberione wanted to offset the harm done by sensationist and anti-clerical papers and magazines. He wanted people to have the best of news in front of them. His idea was not to picket and condemn media and journals, but to provide reading that would be wholesome and attractive.
Sister Nazarena grasped the idea of Alberione and ran with it. She also understood the spiritual foundation that sustained this work of "the Good Press" as it was called in the early days.
She said that the "Pauline Spirit" was really dedicating one's whole being to Jesus Christ, Way, Truth and Life. She said that we need to know, imitate and life the Divine Master Jesus Christ following the footsteps of St. Paul the Apostle and under the gaze of Mary, Queen of the Apostles.
On another topic, a priest friend showed me a nice, peaceful website which has meditation photos and musical accompaniment. Check it out (even though the words of in French it is still lovely): mariedenazareth.com

Monday, October 16, 2006

October in Toronto

Today was the beginning of another busy week. Sister Mary Martha who came from Boston held some meetings with our little community of five Sisters. We talked especially about communication styles among us. We are a group ranging from 36 to 64. That is a bit of a difference in age. But, usually it is not a problem. Sister Martha is a native of Louisiana, so we enjoy her Cajun good sense of humor too.
Sister Martha among other things is the person entrusted with the formation of our Sisters who are called juniors. A junior professed is one who has not yet made her perpetual vows. Sister Marlyn is one of our juniors, professed almost two years ago. (After the tim eof "juniorate" a Sister makes final vows--that is for life.
Tomorrow Sr. Marie Paul leaves for the City of Angels Film Festival in Los Angeles. She has a busy schedule there. Sister does some screen writing among her many duties.
I am trying to put the final touches on a lecture I will give on Thursday evening on "St. Paul Living Today." I will let you know more about this topic after I give the presentation! Here's a picture of St. Paul traveling with the gospel.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Paulines in Montreal

Here I am admiring the beautiful fixtures and the vast array of titles in Montreal.
Here's a glimpse of the book store's cafe.
This is Cardinal Turcotte speaking to the crowd.
I just realized one of the reasons I did not post much in September (zero posts) was that I made a trip with Sister Hosea to Montreal. Our Sisters have been in that city for more than 50 years. They recently had to move from their former address on St. Denis. They found a nice place on Masson. It has a kindergarten on the second floor. It's a whole new kind of neigborhood than the St. Denis locations. Although neither of us English-speaking Americans could handle French we ventured there for the grand opening of their new center -- or to spell it the Canadian way --centre. The place is very attractive--a bookaholic paradise! There is even a mini-cafe comploete with a chef to feed the body as well as the soul. There are computers throughout the store where the staff can check for a title's availability. About 150 or more people squeezed in to be there to cheer on the Sisters. They strive to evangelize the culture by having a very wide selection of books and music, both sacred and secular. If you are there in Montreal, stop in on Blvd. Masson near D'Iberville. (I hope I am spelling it right.)

Sr Anne Joan

I forgot to say that in September Sister Anne Joan flew in from Chicago to give a talk on Pauline Spirituality--specifically on the spirituality taught by our Founder, Blessed James Alberione. Sister Anne Joan has been in Rome for studies also. She gave a great presentation and used some power point slides to help us all remember her message.

Niagara Falls

Well, my last posting missed the Niagara Falls photo. This is a second try at the picture. Enjoy!

Hello I'm Still Here!

Here is a picture I took of Niagara Falls from "under the Falls." That was on my birthday in September. It happened to be a really beautiful clear Sunday. The other photo is of our Founder Blesseed James Alberione and of his assistant of many years, now Blessed, Timothy Giaccardo. During the past week's monthly Pauline Cooperator meeting, I explained with a power point something about the life of Giaccardo. He was the first young man ordained a priest in our Pauline Family's first order: the Society of St. Paul.
After I spoke, I handed the floor to Sarah who spent a week in our Metairie, Louisiana Convent in July 2006. She and two other young women are discerning a vocation to religious life--specifically to my community, the Daughters of St. Paul. The three young women along with Sister Margaret Michael, our vocation directress, wanted to do some kind of out reach with our media apostolate to the folks of the 9th Ward area. As you know from newscasts, that area of New Orleans is still reeling from the effects of Hurricane Katrina. The young women and Sister discerned that they could reach out to some of the residents in a couple of the shelters run by Catholic Sisters, as well as to the neighbors in the vicinty. They used song, photo slides and music to bring a message of hope to the people. In orer to advertise the events, they had to go door-to-door to hand out flyers. In some places mail service is not yet working, so the personal "on your doorstep" approach worked. Sarah had some songs from The Lion King musical which were just the right thing to accompany the pictures. All of us lisetening were very impressed at how three young women who had never before met worked so well together.
This week I am going to give a lecture or talk on a topic dear to my hear: "St. Paul Living Today." If you are in Toronto on Thursday night, Oct. 19, do come. I have a lot to share.