Blessing of Pets

October 2


41160 Retreat Road

Pets of all religious backgrounds and their owners are welcome!

St. Francis gave special consideration to all of God’s creatures, calling them sisters and brothers.

Come and visit the grounds and Retreat Centre 2:30 – 4:00 PM.

Blessing Ritual at 3:00 PM

The blessing will take place on West side of Retreat Centre near the Statue of Saint Francis.


Pets must be leashed or in a crate.

Always With Me

                 – Br. Michael, ofm

“You are always with me.” (Luke 15. 31) the father says to the elder son in the parable of the prodigal son. The father is speaking to the sense of security and shelter which has been overlooked or taken for granted. Here the father reminds his son, of all that is his because he has remained present and faithful as his child. He also is reminding his son that he can be as generous as he desires. This is not shocking news for us who have read this parable many times.


What stands out for me in this simple line scripture of the dialogue between father and son is the invitation of God. God invites us to awareness whether I am the prodigal son lost in my own world or the elder son blinded to the bounty which is always offered to me. God’s abounding, bountiful and steadfast love always meets us where we are and transforms the heart. Here God is, always with us, with the invitation to step into God’s lavish love which is always extended no matter what. As the prodigal child it is mine to receive again and again. As the elder child it is mine to rediscover again and again. Regardless of which of the two sons we feel we are more like, the love of God declares, “you are always with me.” May this be our constant assurance in the week ahead.


God of Lavish Love,

you are always with us,

extending your generosity

and mercy each and every day.

If we feel lost this week

and separated from you

whisper into our ears, “you are always with me.”

If we feel defensive this week

from not feeling seen

whisper into our ears, “you are always with me.”

May our eyes, ears and heart

be opened to where you meet us

each and every day.







Season of Creation: Listening to the Voice of Creation

                 – Br. Michael, ofm


The Season of Creation begins on September 1 and continues to the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi on October 4. It is a season which Pope Francis and Patriarch Bartholomew have implemented and have encouraged. It is a time to not only enjoy the bounty of the earth but also to consider our actions or lack of actions towards safe guarding the environment.


Our sister Mother Earth continues to provide for us, and we (selfishly or not) receive her gifts. As we begin this month of listening to the voice of creation, I have to ask myself what am I grateful for in the small part of this sacred ground on which I live? And what is creation inviting me to do to help sustain her? I ask you these same questions as means of reflecting during this season.


I am thankful for the colours of sunrise and sunset, for the variety of produce coming in the from the garden, for the cool breezes after warm summer days, for the trees of all kinds and styles, just to name a few.


Creation is inviting me to pay attention to her rhythms and cycles, so as to set mine to be more in tune with creation. This is an invitation to use less energy and pay attention to times of rest before producing again.


May our common efforts, individual efforts and prayers continue to be a witness of giving glory and praise to our Creator God.


Creator God,

you call us co-creators and stewards,

stir up in our hearts

the courage to listen to creation

and so listen to you

in the messages of hope,

sustained life and beauty.


Bless those who daily work

for the good of the environment

and bring to our attention the

goodness of Mother Earth.




St. Francis of Assisi – pray for us.




Photo credit: Gabriel Jimenez