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Our Lady of Victory / St. Malachy
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Our Lady of Victory
490 Charles Street
Gatineau, Québec
J8L 2K5

Mass:     Sunday   9:00 AM
            Thursday 10:00 AM

St. Malachy
3889 Route 315
Mayo, Québec
J8L 3Z8

Mass: Saturday 7:00 PM





Fr. Albanus’ Reflections on the Sunday Liturgy

Responding to God’s Call
The readings of this Sunday speak about the need for repentance and a prompt response to God’s call. The first reading tells the story of Jonah who tried to escape the mission he was given by God and how the people of Niniveh responded positively to the call to convert. God had to deal with the disobedient, fleeing prophet Jonah to turn him around (convert him), so that, repenting, he would go to Nineveh to preach repentance there. The wicked people of Niniveh accepted Jonah as God’s prophet at once, and promptly responded to God’s call for repentance as Jonah preached it. In the second reading, Paul urges the Christian community in Corinth to lose no time in accepting the message of the Gospel and in renewing their lives with repentance because Jesus’ second coming may occur at any moment. Paul does not invite us to despise all material goods and comfort but rather advises us to give earthly/material things their real importance. They are, no doubt, important but they are not eternal. Therefore he stresses the need for courageous choices and renunciations as regards them for love of our brothers and sisters. This love is far superior to all material goods. Earthly things pass away but love is eternal.

Today’s Gospel describes how Jesus came to Galilee and began preaching, challenging people to “repent and believe in the Gospel.” Like John, Jesus also called for repentance, meaning a change in one's mind or in the direction of one’s life, setting new priorities. Conversion/repentance means beginning to think according to God’s logic and place the needs of our brothers and sisters first, and not our own. Repentance also means hating sin, not just being sorry for the consequences of one’s sins. Believing in the Gospel demands from the hearers a resolution to take Jesus’ words seriously, to translate them into action and to put trust in Jesus’ authority. Jesus preached the Gospel, or Good News, that God is a loving, forgiving, caring and merciful Father Who wants to liberate us and save us from our sins through His son, Jesus. The Gospel describes the call of Jesus’ first disciples, Andrew, Peter, James and John. By this, today’s Gospel also emphasizes how we, sinners, are to respond to God’s call with total commitment by abandoning our accustomed style of sinful life. Jesus started his public ministry immediately after John the Baptist was arrested. According to Mark, Jesus selected four fishermen, Andrew and his brother Peter with James and his brother John, right from their fishing boats. Jesus wanted these ordinary, hard-working people as assistants for his ministry because they would be very responsive and generous instruments in the hands of God.

The disciples’ call does not come as they are praying or doing anything particularly important but as they are just going about their daily chores. This shows that the call is completely gratuitous. We have come to know and follow Christ because He chose to reveal to us the love of the Father without any merit on our part. The disciples in the Gospel answer their call immediately; they left everything to follow Jesus. They are not allowed any delay. They must reply at once, and such reply must be accompanied by a concrete giving up of their past way of life. Hence, every disciple has to make an immediate and final separation. Nothing should stand in our way when it comes to following Christ. Even legitimate love for parents and family, an attachment to one’s profession, a need for social and financial security, the wish not to lose one’s friends, these all must be given up if they are impediments to the life that Jesus calls us to. It is therefore appropriate for us to ask ourselves: what did we leave when we decided to follow Jesus? What links did we serve? What “nets” should we leave behind today when we decide to follow Jesus? (Armellini Fernando, Year B,p 173-174). We need to appreciate our call to become Christ’s disciples: Every one of us is called by God, both individually, and collectively as a parish community, to continue Jesus’ mission of preaching the Good News of God’s Kingdom and healing the sick. We are called individually to a way of life or vocation: – a religious commitment (priest, deacon, missionary, religious Sister or Brother, marriage partner or single person),plus a particular occupation arising from our talents (medicine, law, teaching, healing, writing, art, music, building and carpentry, home-making, child-rearing..). Our own unique vocation should enable us to become what God wants us to be (Kadavil, A). Happy Sunday!


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490 Charles Street • Gatineau • Québec • J8L 2K5
Telephone: (819) 986-3763
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