Thursday, June 18, 2009

Special night at St. Teresa's

Last night was a very special time. Redemptorists from all across Canada met at St. Teresa's for their provincial English-speaking meeting. I went to the Mass and reception afterward. There were 10 Redemptorist priests and the archbishop of St. John's, Martin Currie. It was especially touching at the end of Mass, when Archbishop Currie was speaking about his near-death experience. Earlier this year, his grace was at home when the area was filled with carbon monoxide. The bishop was asleep and would have died, only someone wondered why he was not yet at Mass. They rushed to his room and found him clinging to life. He was rushed to the emergency room of the hospital and later sent to intensive care.

The archbishop broke down, unable to control his tears, as he recalled how near death, Our Lady of Perpetual Help held out her hand and told him she would lead him. He said it was her intercession that saved his life. This reminds me of Pope John Paul II's assassination attempt. He also experienced a vision of the Virgin, this time as Our Lady of Fatima. He had a special devotion to her, and an M was on his emblem representing the Virgin. Martin Currie, bishop of St. John's and Grand Falls, is lucky to be alive and he believes it was due in part to Mary's intercession.

Another highlight of my night was the reception which followed Mass. We got to see many great priests who have been part of the St. Teresa's community for decades. Fr. Tom Kelly was celebrating his 55th year as a priest, and Fr. Jim Davis was celebrating his 65th year as a Redemptorist and 60th year as a priest.

At the reception, I had a great chat with Fr. Mark Miller, who is a bioethicist and moral theologian. We talked about everything from suicide, to euthanasia, to embryonic stem cell research, to Terry Shiavo, and more. It was very enlightening.

The priests who were there were as follows (from memory):

Fr. Mike Brehl
Fr. Tom Kelly
Fr. Steve Morrissey
Fr. Leo English
Fr. Tom O'Rourke
Fr. Charlie Goakery
Fr. Mark Miller
Fr. Remi Hebert
Fr. Jon Hansen
Fr. Jim Davis
Abp. Martin Currie

Last night also marked the first day for the Novena to Our Lady of Perpetual Help. It ends on her feast day on June 27th, the eve of my birthday. May Our Lady touch your life like she has touched the lives of Archbishop Currie and Pope John Paul II.

No comments:

Post a Comment