Happy Feast of St.Blaise

Feb 2 – St.Blaise

Saint-Blase The legendary Acts of St. Blaise were written 400 years after his martyrdom in 316. According to them Blaise was a good bishop, working hard to encourage the spiritual and physical health of his people. Although the Edict of Toleration (311), granting freedom of worship in the Roman Empire, was already five years old, persecution still raged in Armenia. Blaise was apparently forced to flee to the back country. There he lived as a hermit in solitude and prayer, but he made friends with the wild animals. One day a group of hunters seeking wild animals for the amphitheater stumbled upon Blaise’s cave. The bishop was kneeling in prayer surrounded by patiently waiting wolves, lions and bears.

The legend has it that as the hunters hauled Blaise off to prison, a mother came with her young son who had a fish bone lodged in his throat. At Blaise’s command the child was able to cough up the bone.

Agricolaus, governor of Cappadocia, tried to persuade Blaise to sacrifice to pagan idols. After refusing several times he was finally beheaded. St.Blaise is the patron of throat ailments.

Blaise is seen as one more example of the power those have who give themselves entirely to Jesus. As Jesus told his apostles at the Last Supper, “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask for whatever you want and it will be done for you” (John 15:7). With faith we can follow the lead of the Church in asking for Blaise’s protection.

“Through the intercession of St. Blaise, bishop and martyr, may God deliver you from ailments of the throat and from every other illness. In the Name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Blessing of St. Blase).

-taken, in part, from americancatholic.

They will never take our…FREEDOM!

What is true freedom about? We need only to look at the Scriptures to see it spelled out, and we see that it clearly is about living our lives in truth, from the heart!

In Deuteronomy 18.15-20 we hear Moses as he speaks of the responsibility of a prophet to speak God’s truth, and also the responsibility of the listener, that they will be held accountable to live out in action what they hear.

Paul’s words, to the Corinthians (1 Cor. 7.32-35), tie in very closely to this, as he urges them to have “unhindered devotion to the Lord”, that they may be free from the aniety of the world; that a devotion to the Lord would lead them to true freedom to follow His ways.

And then, what a powerful image we see in the Gospel, Mark 1.21-28; while teaching in the synagogue Jesus casts out a demon from the man and calls this man to freedom, through His name. Imagine how this man may have felt. He had been tormented by an evil presence, perhaps for years. Maybe you have had a similar experience, or maybe someone close to you has/is experiencing this, maybe not in such an intense way, but something that was/is holding it’s grip, hindering peace and joy. Perhaps while this man was listening to Jesus in the synagogue he felt the agitation of the evil spirit within himself. Perhaps he could sense that the demon felt threatened. Perhaps he moved closer to the Lord, drawn by a mysterious subconscious hope. Suddenly the spirit exerts itself, taking over control of the man’s body. With a mere word Jesus silences him, and orders him to depart. The man is thrown to the ground in a fit of fury, and then silence. Peace. Could he believe it? He opens his eyes and knows that he is now himself again. His eyes meet Christ’s… what gratitude fills his heart. What love and gladness he finds in the glance of Jesus!*

Jesus Christ came to bring new life and new hope to every human heart, and he rejoices whenever we move towards Him and let Him have His way.

Whenever I think of the word ‘freedom’ I always think of the line from the movie Braveheart. There is a speech given by the warrior-leader William Wallace to his rag-tag army of Scottish rebels as they are lined up to fight the vast army of England for their country (quoted in part):

“Every man dies, not every man really lives… Would you be willing to trade all the days… for just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they’ll never take… our FREEDOM.”

This is a powerful scene. You see someone passionate and speaking with conviction, willing to put his words into action. This is how I envisioned Jesus in this scripture passage, as he “speaks with authority”, casting out the demon from this man. Freedom for us, as believers in God, is unique. Jesus tells us in John 8, “You will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” The Catechism of the Catholic Church, in defining freedom, gives somewhat of a mouthful of a definition, but it is an important definition: “Freedom is the power rooted in reason and will to act or not to act, to do this or that, and so to perform some deliberate actions on one’s own responsibility… Human freedom…attains to perfection when directed toward God, our beatitude.” CCC 1731

So the way we truly become free is in living our lives in the truth (of God), so that we choose the good. The way that we most fully become human is to always choose God, our creator, and His ways. When we fail to choose the good we become slaves, held in the bondage of evil and/or sin.

In our world today there is a real misunderstanding of freedom. How crucial it is for us, as followers and believers in Christ, to be living witnesses to freedom. So (as we come to this celebration of God’s love for us, to be fed with His life and truth), let us take to heart these readings from Scripture and their wisdom for us. Let us reflect upon how we are called to be faithful disciples. Jesus has revealed to you and to me what it means to be free. He shows us what it means to do the will of the Father and we are called to imitate His discipleship and walk in the same freedom. Let us also reflect on this connection we see between freedom and truth, between freedom and holiness, between freedom and discipleship. And as we take this truth into our heart we pray that the wisdom, the power, and the love of God and His son, would draw us in and transform us from within to be His true disciples each and every day; to live in FREEDOM!


* Italics in this particular paragraph taken, in part, from “The Better Part”, by John Bartunek, pg 350.

Happy feast day of Pope Saint John Paul II

Just wanted to wish you all a happy feast day of Saint John Paul II. This year will be the first year we will be celebrating his feast day, as he was just canonized a saint earlier this year.


Click here for a short summary of His life. There is also a really good editorial here.

For those of you interested in the process of how someone becomes a saint, click here.

For those of you with little ones, here is a link to a free colouring page for today. We printed some off for our little ones:)

Have a wonderful and blessed day as you reflect on the life of this amazing person, and amazing saint!

Installation Mass

Today was a very exciting day. We were able to celebrate our first Mass here, with the community, since our arrival. Fr.Kieran drove down from Whitehorse to celebrate Mass in Iskut, Dease Lake, & here, in Telegraph Creek, at 5 pm. Half the day was spent in preparing the community supper, firing up the wood furnace in the Church, and just making sure we had everything together for the celebration of Mass & Reconciliation.

During the celebration of the Mass we were installed as the Pastoral Administrators of St.Theresa’s Catholic Mission. It was a very beautiful installation with us promising on our part that we would seek to support and nurture the parish community in a spiritual manner and the community, on their part, would support us. There were 11 other community members present.

Afterwards we were able to join at the Parish house for supper and fellowship and we were able to meet some members of the community whom we had not yet met.

The Lord is truly blessing this time! We wish we could write more, but we wanted to leave you all with something as we will be leaving early in the morning for Whitehorse. We will be spending Tuesday to Thursday at the pastoral study days for the Diocese of Whitehorse, and then our Holy Family Apostolate meeting on Friday, to arrive back here Saturday evening!