Lent
Lent has been said by many to be the most spiritually profitable time of the year. By the three pillars of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, we are made more like Christ as we imitate His forty days in the desert, and as we prepare for the Sacred Triduum and Easter. A season of prayer and penance, we purify ourselves by moving away from sin, and seeking forgiveness. As a Parish, here are some of things we are doing, and the spiritual practices we observe, to live this holy season faithfully.

Ash Wednesday

The Ash Wednesday Mass will be held at 9:30 am and 7 pm at St. Stephen's Parish, and at 5pm at Maria Regina Parish. Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are both days of Fasting and Abstainance from meat.

Fasting

Fasting applies to anyone over 18, and under 60. Certainly, medical reasons such as diabetes, illness, and pregnancy, release one from the requirement to fast. Fasting is held to be having only one main meal, and two small snacks throughout the day. For many, fasting also means giving something up throughout Lent – some give up Facebook, others give up smoking or drinking, and other give up chocolate or some other favourite treat. This is an excellent practice for families to do with children.

Abstaining

From the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops: This form of penance needs to be seen as a near cousin of fasting. We may give up meat or other desirable foods on one or two days a week during Lent, especially on Friday, the day of Christ’s saving death on the cross. Our abstinence is another way of sharing in Christ’s work of saving the world. Throughout the year, every Friday is a day of abstinence from meat, obliging all Catholics who are 14 years or older, [and who are in good health.] We may also substitute other good actions for abstinence from meat. These could include special acts of charity (visiting the sick or aged, helping those in any need, contributing time or money to a work of charity) or other acts of piety (taking part in a service of worship with others, praying with our family, spending some extra time in personal prayer, especially with God’s holy word in the scriptures). Fish is of course the traditional substitute for meat, and eggs are certainly allowed.

Divine Mercy Chaplet

Every day, the Divine Mercy Chaplet will be prayed at 3 pm in the church at St. Stephen's. This short prayer is offered at the hour of Christ's Death on the Crucifix. This is a remarkably powerful spiritual practice.

Rosary

The Rosary will be prayed half an hour before Saturday and Sunday Masses, honouring the Mother of our Lord. While everyone is free to pray for their own intentions, the Parish intentions for these twelve Rosaries are: Sick of the Parish; Persecuted Christians; Success of the Parish Lent Mission; Deceased Members of our Community; Deceased Priests of the Diocese; Victims of Abuse; Spiritual Renewal of our Parish; Youth of our Parish; Holy Vocations to the Priesthood and Religious Life; For our Material Spiritual Benefactors; In Reparation for Sin; Mary's Intercession for our Diocese; We hope that you will join your community in prayer.

Stations of the Cross

Every Friday at 7pm St. Stephen's will be praying the Stations of the Cross. A different format will be used weekly. Every Friday at 6:30 pm Maria Regina Parish will be praying the Stations of the Cross. This will be followed immediately by Mass. This replaces the Thursday afternoon Mass.

Bible Study

Fr. White is conducting a Bible Study every Thursday during Lent, at 7pm in the Rectory. No experience is needed, and Scripture will be provided. Bring your questions and thoughts as we explore Holy Scipture. Snacks will be provided, of course.



Greetings to all.
Hope you are well and safe during this unusual time.

1. We now have 2 masses on the weekends, Saturdays at 6:00 and Sundays at 10:30. We are only allowed to have a maximum of 100 people to abide by the public health measure rules. Parishioners no longer need to call and make an appointment for mass. You may however, view daily Masses via live streaming on Facebook using ID “ Mekala Kris” or “Stephen Parish” at 10:30 AM.

2. If anyone is in need of the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick please call the parish office.

3. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is available by appointment only. Those wishing to receive the sacrament can call the parish office to book an appointment. Appointments will follow the social distancing guidelines.

4. If you have a Mass or Prayer requests you will need to provide the following information: Name of the person for whom the Mass will be offered. Identify if the mass is to be offered in honor of or in memory of your loved one. The date you wish to offer the mass and the name of the person offering the mass. This information can be emailed to: fatherchrisstsp79@gmail.com or you can drop the details off in an envelope to the parish. If you can’t send your Mass stipend right away don’t worry you can send it later by cheque in the name of St. Stephen’s Parish or by dropping it in mailbox.

5. I have received a number of inquiries from parishioners wishing to make their weekly contribution to support the parish financially. You can drop your envelopes off to the parish mailbox or you can send your donation by e-transfer to stephensparish@gmail.com. Don’t forget to write your envelope number in the comment section.

6. If you want to pick up your income tax receipts please call to the parish and we will assist you with your request.

7. If you wish to schedule an appointment with the priest please call 643-2523.

Thank you for your generous support and understanding.

God bless
Father Kris