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Since 1732, the Redemptorists — a congregation of missionary priests and brothers — have followed in Jesus’ footsteps, preaching the Word and serving the poor and most abandoned.
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From the missions: Sowing the seed of the Word

Please join us in praying for the more than 20 Redemptorists and lay missionaries from across North America who are preaching a regional mission in the Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan in Alberta, Canada during the next two weeks — November 5-17.

Redemptorists from the Provinces of Baltimore, Denver, Ste. Anne de Beaupre, Edmonton-Toronto, and Yorkton will be preaching the mission in English, Spanish, French, and Ukrainian. Mission services will be held in the city of Grande Prairie and the many smaller towns and villages throughout the area. The theme is “The Sower Sows the Word,” based on Matthew 13:4-9.

Baltimore Provincial Patrick Woods, as well as Fathers Thomas Deely, Richard Bennett, and Frank Jones will be participating. Several of them will be periodically reporting about their experiences. Check back often for updates.

Here is Father Woods’ first report:

Fr. Tom Deely (left), and
Fr. Frank Jones(fourth from left)
of the Baltimore Province during
one of the mission’s opening Masses.

The Redemptorist missionaries arrived from east and west, north and south late last week. On November 4, we had a day of study and prayer under the direction of Archbishop Gerard Pettipas (also a Redemptorist) at St. Joseph Church in Grande Prairie. The diocesan clergy and the Redemptorist missionaries attended the day, which included talks on the history of the Church in Alberta, the Redemptorist missions, and the Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan.

A moose in Alberta, Canada.

We had a Holy Hour and Mass and a marvelous dinner prepared by the parishioners. The missionaries also had individual meetings with the pastors of the parishes where they will be preaching.

There are priests in the Archdiocese from India, the Philippines, Nigeria, and Poland. There are few native clergy in this large and diverse territory. Native Americans make up 26% of the Catholic population and 13% of Catholics are French-speaking. There is a small Hispanic community (not a parish) that Father Tom Deely will lead in the mission. Tom also was the first to spot a moose. (See his blog for more photos.)

More From the Missions:

Following in Alphonsus’ footsteps (11/9/10)
Week 1 wraps up as the mission moves to McLennan (11/12/10)
An extraordinary experience (11/18/10)

Prayer for the Grouard-McLennan Mission

God, Our Father, we offer you praise and thanksgiving 
for all the many gifts You have given us 
through Jesus, Your Son. 
We thank you especially for the gift of this regional mission. 
Loving and gracious God, quiet the minds and hearts of those taking part,
that they may be open to the gift of Your truth.
Grant that this Mission may be:
a time of Grace for all,
a time of growth for the young,
a time of renewal for the old,
a time of union for families,
a time of healing for the broken,
a time of joy for the sorrowing,
a time of challenge for the complacent,
a time of forgiveness for the sinner,
a time of strength for the holy,
a time of homecoming for those who have been away. 
Grant, most Loving God, that this Mission
may bring down your richest blessings
on each and every member of the community. 
We pray through the intercession of Mary, our Mother, 
in the name of Jesus Christ, who lives with you and the Holy Spirit
now and forever. Amen.