St Mary Star of the Sea

Roman Catholic Church, Mississauga, Ontario

FRom Fr Neil's Desk

Blessing For Our Home

We resolve to allow this trust in God and in God’s blessing to allay fear, to dispel hopelessness, to curtail despair. Knowing that all we shall do and say and attempt and become in the year ahead will lie securely under God’s loving benediction.

Perhaps we can resolve as well to bless our own as we go forth from this blessed assembly and return to our homes, our workplaces and our daily lives. Perhaps we who are renewed in the blessings of God can try once again to be blessings for one another.

To that end and with the able inspiration afforded us by Fr Edward Hays, a current spiritual writer, we might pray the following words of blessing in our homes and over those we love as family and friends.


Lord our God, You whose home is in heaven and on earth and in that undiscovered beyond, come and bless this house which is our home.

Surround this shelter with your Holy Spirit.
Encompass all its sides with the power of your protection so that no evil or harm will come near.
May that divine blessing shield this home from destruction, storm, sickness and all that might bring evil to us who live within these walls.

The prayer proceeds to bless each room in the house. You want to prinkle holy water in each of the rooms being blessed so that all the home is sanctuary of God’s peace. It concludes with these words dedicating our homes to hospitality.

May our door always be open to those in need, the neighbour as well as the stranger.
May all who come to us find our door and our hearts open to them and their needs.
May god’s holy presence shine forth here and bless all who live here and all who come to our door.

Amen


Msgr Joe Shiels
Your gift to God

What you are is God’s gift to you. But what you become is your gift to God.


These words have been tucked away in my drawer for a while and I can’t recall when I heard them. But every so often I read them and I reflect on the message they project.

God’s grace fills us with the strength to be the best version of ourselves. The gifts of the Holy Spirit given to us during our Baptism and affirmed and accepted by each of us in our Sacrament of Confirmation fill our inner toolbox with everything we need to discern, act and communicate in the way Jesus taught us. All of us have been given the gifts of wisdom, understanding, counsel, knowledge, fortitude, piety, and wonder of the Lord. It is how we use these gifts that become our gift to God.

But God knows he has also given us our own talents, personalities and strengths. We are individuals and we have a freedom to decide our own directions. This isn’t about the direction on what career we choose, which house we buy, what sports we play – but the direction on who we will become, what values we embrace, how we interact with others, what words we speak. “We should invest the gifts that God has blessed us with wisely. We should use our gifts and abilities to honor God and to bless, encourage and strengthen others in love.”

I would encourage each of us to reflect on what we have become. In God’s eyes, have we used our gifts wisely? Is there one thing – right now – that we can do to bring us closer to God? Is there one gift given to us by God that we can nurture to help us become the best we can be – our own gift to God.

Father Neil




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