2021-2022 Elementary Pastoral Plan MMARY .NOV 2021 (1).pdf
The Story of Sts. Martha and Mary
"Now as they went on their way, He entered a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed Him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what He was saying. But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to Him and asked, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.”
But the Lord answered her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her."
We are called to follow Jesus, like the early disciples. The scripture story of Martha and Mary remind us of the importance to listen to the word of the Lord, and not to busy ourselves with the distractions of life.
Martha and Mary were deeply devoted to Jesus during his earthly minstry. The were sisters of Lazarus, with whom Jesus rose from the dead.
A Summer Prayer
May you breathe in the beauty of summer with its power of transformation.
May you seek and find spaces of repose during these summer months. May these moments
refresh and restore you.
May you be open to times of celebration and recreation that are so much a part of summer.
May you find happiness in these times of play and leisure.
May your eyes see the wonders of summer colours. May these colours delight you and
entice you into contemplation and joy.
May you feel the energy of summer rains penetrating thirsty gardens, golf courses, lawns
May these rains remind you that your inner thirst needs quenching; your inner self needs to
be refreshed, restored and renewed.
No one enjoys summer like children. They do not yet work in offices. They do not own
calendars with tasks crying to be done. And so, when school is out, look for the child who
lives inside you and rediscover the gifts of summer.
Thank You Lord
Lord, we thank you for making us life-long learners.
We have finished another year of education and we thank you for all the opportunities you have given us to expand our knowledge.
We thank you for our parents, teachers and clergy from whom we learn.
This summer, help us to relax, to enjoy our families and friends and to have fun.
Help us to remember to play safely;
Help us to learn from our summer experiences;
And most of all,
Help us to speak with You frequently especially when we encounter You in Your wonderful creation.
"Commnication is essential to building parent engagement. What parents know and perceive about the school depends on what they see, hear and read."
About the Sacraments
Sacraments are celebrations of special moments of encounter between God and human beings. They are not, obviously, the only occasions when human beings consciously respond to God who is forever offering His love and friendship, but they are times when, the Catholic Church teaches, a person's relationship with God is assuredly initiated or deepened or strengthened or healed.
The Sacrament of Baptism
Baptism is the first of the sacraments of initiation into the Catholic church. It makes us adopted children of God, incorporates us into Christ, pardons all our sin, and forms us into God’s people. It confers a permanent relationship ("character") with Christ and his Church which lasts even should one cease to be an active member of the Catholic community. For this reason a validly baptized Christian is never re-baptized and has the right to a Christian funeral.
Bishops, priests and deacons are the ordinary ministers of baptism, although anyone with the right intention may administer the sacrament in case of imminent death. The words for conferring baptism in the Latin Church are: "I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit".
Christian Initiation of Children
Baptism of infants takes place within the first few weeks after birth in the parish Church. It is highly desirable that baptisms take place during Sunday Eucharist when the parish community is assembled for worship. Otherwise, baptisms are scheduled by the parish staff, as required. It is important to recall that this sacrament is a church and not a family celebration, that the parents must have the intention of raising the child in the Catholic faith and that both parents and godparents are to be instructed on the serious responsibility they take upon themselves when they present their children for baptism.
The Sacrament of Confirmation
"... by the Sacrament of Confirmation, [the baptized] are more perfectly bound to the Church and are enriched with a special strength of the Holy Spirit. Hence they are, as true witnesses of Christ, more strictly obliged to spread and defend the faith by word and deed" (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1285). All baptized persons who have not been confirmed and only they are capable of being confirmed. It is required, if the person has the use of reason, that he/she be suitably instructed, properly disposed and able to renew his/her baptismal promises (canon 889).
In the Archdiocese of Toronto, the Cardinal Archbishop has recently delegated authority to pastors to confirm their parishioners due to the large size of the diocese and to enable young people to be Confirmed on or close to the Feast of Pentecost.
Sponsors for this sacrament are ideally, the same persons who served as one’s baptismal sponsors. They are intended to be models of faith and so must be Confirmed themselves, be practising their faith, and be mature enough (usually sixteen years or older) to carry out the role of sponsor. A sponsor can be either male or female. Parents cannot be sponsors for their own children (canons 874 and 893).
Young people in the Archdiocese of Toronto are ordinarily Confirmed in their grade eight year. This applies as well to children of catechetical age (7 to 14 years) who were not baptized as infants but as young children.
The Sacrament of Eucharist
"The holy Eucharist completes Christian initiation" (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1322). "The Eucharist is the ‘source and summit of the Christian life’. The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1324).
If from the beginning Christians have celebrated the Eucharist and in a form whose substance has not changed despite the great diversity of times and liturgies, it is because we know ourselves to be bound by the command the Lord gave on the eve of his Passion: "Do this in remembrance of me."
We carry out this command of the Lord by celebrating the memorial of his sacrifice. In so doing, we offer to the Father what he has himself given us: the gifts of his creation, bread and wine which, by the power of the Holy Spirit and by the words of Christ, have become the body and blood of Christ. Christ is thus really and mysteriously made present.
We must therefore consider the Eucharist as:
- thanksgiving and praise to the Father;the sacrificial memorial of Christand his Body
- the presence of Christ by the power of his word and of his Spirit.
(Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1356, 1357, 1358).
The decision concerning an individual child’s readiness to receive First Communion rests in the first place with the child’s parents in consultation with the child’s parish priest and teacher(s). However, it is the duty of the parish priest to see to it that children who have not yet reached the use of reason, or whom he has judged to be insufficiently prepared, do not come to Holy Communion (canon 914).
Adequate preparation (in the Archdiocese of Toronto) is understood to be the successful completion of the initial preparation for this sacrament (either in a Catholic school or in a parish) and of the immediate preparation provided by the parish for all First Communion candidates (e.g. enrolment of all candidates for First Eucharist and, where these exist, additional classes). (Norms for Sacramental Preparation, Archdiocese of Toronto, 76)