This initiative consists of all parishes in the diocese offering the sacrament of Reconciliation on all the Wednesdays of Advent and Lent from 7:30-8:30pm in addition to other scheduled times for Reconciliation at your parish.
Below are bulletin reflections for Rejoice in God’s Mercy, the diocesan renewal of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Please insert these reflections into your parish bulletin each Sunday from Feb 11 to Palm Sunday.
- Note that Some parishes may need to extend the time to accommodate the number of penitents or speak about the initiative in advance to encourage parishioners to take advantage of the earlier dates. Make Reconciliation available at your parish on Wednesdays February 21, 28; March 7, 14, 21 & 28, from 7:30 – 8:30pm.
You might like to use this paragraph to advertise the initiative in your parish bulletin:
The Diocese of Calgary invites you to experience the peace, love, and joy brought by participating in the sacrament of reconciliation. In addition to the regular parish schedule, the sacrament of Reconciliation will be available at parishes throughout the Diocese of Calgary all the Wednesdays of Lent from 7:30 – 8:30pm.
In addition to the regular parish schedule, the sacrament of Reconciliation will be available at parishes throughout the Diocese of Calgary all the Wednesdays of Lent from 7:30-8:30 p.m.
February 11, 6th Sunday of ordinary time
Catholics celebrate the sacrament of Reconciliation because we recognise that sometimes we fail to do as we ought and because we believe in God’s mercy and forgiveness. Action: Share your faith in God’s mercy with others and let them know that it is available for them also.
February 18: Lent I
As we begin Lent, the desert is not a place for us to fear, but a place of encountering the Holy Spirit. The Spirit can reveal what binds us, as well as what steals from our freedom to be the person God created us to be. Action: Throughout the forty days of Lent, pray to the Holy Spirit to advocate for you and free you from whatever keeps you from greater intimacy with God.
February 25: Lent II
While Peter tells Jesus “it’s good to be here”, he is also genuinely terrified. The work of a Christian calls for our courage, trust, and faith. The challenges of Christian living bring us out of complacency and into authentic discipleship where we encounter Christ in one another. Action: Go outside of your comfort zone. Ask the Holy Spirit to identify Christ to you in people you may have overlooked.
MARCH 4: LENT III
Jesus is on His way to Jerusalem to celebrate Passover. He quickly responds to the appalling acts taking place in the temple with holy audacity, righteous anger, and consuming zeal. Just as Jesus clears the temple, if we are living temples of the Holy Spirit, we can also ask what abominations are taking place in us. Action: Pray to the Holy Spirit to identify what needs to change in your life. Dare to ask God for help and mercy.
MARCH 11: LENT IV
The image of the crucifix is itself a prayer for many Catholics. We are encouraged to rest our eyes upon the crucifix and see the One, who has created all things. As you ponder the meaning of the Cross, above all consider this: God chose that His only Son suffer upon the Cross that we might be healed. Action: Spend time in quiet in front of a cross or crucifix. Observe how this contemplation affects you.
MARCH 18: LENT V
A seed must die to produce new life. In dying to self we choose to trust and to exercise faith, hope and love. These virtues lead us into intimate contact with God and transform us into new life in the image of Christ. Action: What can you do to die to self during this week of Lent? Which virtues will help you to glorify God in this way?
With Passion Sunday we begin the final week of Lent and prepare ourselves to celebrate the Paschal Triduum. Rejoice in God’s Mercy has aimed to invite you to participate more readily and more easily in the sacrament of Reconciliation. Most parishes have a regularly scheduled time for Reconciliation throughout the year or by appointment. Jesus never said it would be easy to follow him but he also gave us this sacrament to help us own up to our failings, receive his strength, and start anew. Action: Take concrete steps to make the sacrament of Reconciliation an integral part of your life as a disciple of Christ.
A Hug from God is All you need
Even with the Extraordinary Year of Mercy behind us, doors across our diocese remain open for you to experience the peace, love, and joy brought by participating in the sacrament of Reconciliation. In addition to the regular parish schedule, the sacrament of Reconciliation will be available at parishes throughout the Diocese of Calgary all the Wednesdays of Advent from 7:30–8:30 p.m.
Nov. 20 • Christ the King
Catholics celebrate the sacrament of Reconciliation because we recognise that sometimes we fail to do as we ought and because we believe in God’s mercy and forgiveness. The priest can help you and you can trust the Holy Spirit to guide you. Even if you don’t know how you can change your life, showing up makes you open to the grace that the sacrament brings. The Diocese of Calgary invites you to re-discover the meaning of the sacrament of Reconciliation in your life. Action: Do you celebrate the sacrament of Reconciliation regularly? If so, share your positive experience with someone this week. If you are afraid to go to Reconciliation, speak about your reservations with a priest or someone you know who does participate in the sacrament.
Nov. 27 • First Sunday of Advent
The readings for this first Sunday of Advent remind us that the spiritual life is a journey. Any trip takes preparation and effort. It can be easier to stay where we are but the journey also brings rewards—new experiences, new friends, great photos, and transformation. Our pilgrim journey is no different. The prophet Isaiah compares the spiritual journey to climbing a mountain. It requires wakefulness and effort to reach the summit. The sacrament of Reconciliation might seem like an insurmountable peak especially if we have been coasting on the plains for a while but this effort need not be a burden if we keep in mind the purpose of the journey and what awaits us at the top. The real reward of the spiritual journey is union with God through Jesus Christ, which we experience as a deep peace. So this Advent put on your hiking shoes and take up your response to the Psalmist: Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord! Action: Stay awake and take note of the call to discipleship in everyday moments.
Dec. 4 • Second Sunday of Advent
Isaiah prophesies that Jesus will bring reconciliation between even natural enemies: the wolf with the lamb, the cow with the bear, even the small child with the venomous snake. Who are your enemies? Do not lose hope for reconciliation. Through Jesus we too can experience reconciliation in our lives and in our world. John the Baptist calls all people to repentance so that we can live in harmony with one another and welcome one another in the same way Christ has welcomed us. We can hope that through steadfastness and endurance we too can prepare the way for Lord’s healing of division. Action: Look in your community and among your neighbours, family, and friends. Where there is division, take the first step towards reconciliation.
Dec. 11 • Third Sunday of Advent,Gaudete Sunday
With God anything is possible. There is the danger to think that God will never forgive you or that you cannot change yourself or the world. In Advent we are reminded that we do not need to do everything ourselves. Jesus has ransomed us and we respond to the psalmist by crying out: “Lord, come and save us.“ It may be that the healing or the change for which we long does not come quickly enough for us. Advent is also about waiting. In Advent, we have to be patient and trust that the coming of the Lord is near. With God, the blind can see, the lame walk, the sick are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor receive good news! The Lord continues to do these things for us but we have to put aside all substitutes for God in order to see and receive the healing promised through Jesus Christ. Action: Look for the goodness of God in your life, in the people around you, and in the world.
Dec. 18 • Fourth Sunday of Advent
The problems of life are not always as they seem. Mary was engaged to Joseph but before they lived together she was found to be with child. What was Joseph to do? He planned to dismiss her quietly, but then an angel appeared and all his problems took on new meaning. The child is conceived by the Holy Spirit and he will be the Saviour! Joseph was afraid but had faith and did as the angel commanded. In difficult times you do not need to walk alone. Next week we celebrate the birth of the Christ child, Emmanuel, God with us. In times of trial, turn to prayer; invite Jesus, Mary, and all the saints to guide you and advocate for you. Action: The angel’s promise is fulfilled as we celebrate the birth of the Christ child. Amidst the trials of your life, be like Joseph; in faith and humility lay your turbulence in the manger and know that God is with you.
In this forum we will explore the sacrament of confession.
We will begin by learning what reconciliation is with Fr. Eric Nelson. Next we will learn why we confess and why it's important to us with Fr. Cristino Bouvette. And finally we will learn how to approach confession with Fr. David Meadows.
Reconciliation: A Gift for Life & Living
Bless Me Father: Why We Confess & Why it's Important
How to Go to Confession
In this forum we will explore the topic of forgiveness.