Blessings of Hope at Easter Triduum

Lenten Reflections with Br. Michael Perras, ofm


During these sacred days we pray with

St. Francis of Assisi:


Blessed be the Lord, God of Israel,

who has redeemed the souls of his servants

with his own most holy blood,

and will not abandon those who hope in the Lord.

– Psalm Six – Office of the Passion of St. Francis


Peace and All Good

to bless you and your home

during this Easter Season.


Easter Blessings and Greetings

from the Friars and Staff at Mount St. Francis

High Stakes Humanity: Holy Week Perspectives

Lenten Reflections with Br. Michael Perras, ofm

               As we journey into this Holy Week let us be attentive to the tensions and movements of the heart of not only those who lived with Jesus but also our own and those who live with us. Holy Week is time to consider the perspectives of high stakes humanity.

The shouts of “Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord” bring us into this week. We add our voices of praise for we know the rich blessings of Christ. Do we live from a place of blessing and gratitude?

In the gospels for each day of Holy Week we see and hear many different characters. We begin with Pilate and the tension he carries. He feels torn and, in the end, lets pride lead the way. When tensions arise in our life or community do we hold firm in our blinded ways or are we willing to listen to truths we have not considered?

We again encounter Martha, Mary, and Lazarus. They offer a space for Jesus to gather with those dear to him. During this time Mary anoints the feet of Jesus. When we see actions for the good of others which challenge our norm do we get uncomfortable and defensive, or do we take note and let our heart be transformed?

Peter also plays a key role in the unfolding of the week, as does Judas. One denies and the other betrays. We too know the pain these actions cause in our lives. Denial cuts to the heart and betrayal leaves one feeling abandoned. How do we not let moments of denial and betrayal destroy our living in Christ? How do we rise above?

As we enter the Triduum we are invited to table with Jesus and his disciples. At this table not only are we gifted the life-giving bread and living cup, we are also shown what it means to be of true service and to lay down one’s life for another. Who do we need to be gathered at table with during the season ahead? Who do we need to thank for their acts of service? No matter where we are in the journey of life are we willing to lay down our life for another through sacrifices and service?

As we come to Good Friday, we again hear the cries of “Crucify him!” The angry jeers of the crowd. We cannot remain here; we must move to the foot of the cross. Here we see the deep care of Jesus as he gifts John to his mother and his mother to John. The early church will know it is anchored. We too must note the actions of Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus. Their care for Jesus calls us to be care givers for the Body of Christ. How can we do this in these holy days and in the season ahead?

We then we enter the silence of Holy Saturday. A perspective which we often ignore. How can we incorporate even a moment of holy silence into our daily living?

Holy Week is indeed high stakes. Let us enter earnestly, paying attention to the movements of the week and the movements of our heart.


We glory in your cross, O Christ for it is the way to life.



Photo Credit: K. Mitch Hodge

Renewal: The Essence of Lent

Lenten Reflections with

Br. Michael Perras, ofm

Week 5


Throughout the season of Lent we have heard scripture which speaks of renewal and being anchored in Christ. As we begin this Fifth Week of Lent the scriptures for Sunday are an invitation for our hearts to be made new as we journey towards the great Easter Feast.

The prophet Jeremiah (31.31-34) ascribes to God, “I will be their God and they shall be my people… from the least of them to the greatest.” These beautiful words speak of the deep covenant bond God has with us. Each day this covenant is renewed and refreshed. This covenant is sealed with the love of Jesus Christ poured out for us and each day we must embrace it as a way of living out God’s law of love.

The Fifth Sunday of Lent is also known as Solidarity Sunday. It is a reminder of the covenant we share with all of God’s people from the least to the greatest. To be in solidarity with each other is to see all as valued members of the covenant. As Christ came to serve, we too are called to follow him by serving him through service to the poorest of the poor and those who do not know they are valued members of the covenant. This speaks of renewal. When we encounter the poor, the sick, or the hurting are our hearts created anew or are they hardened? Do we embrace the essence of Lent as an opportunity not only for our renewal but also for the renewal of the church and all people?

This is not a lofty goal set aside for the Pope and theologians, it is the core of who we are as Christians. Each one of us gives witness to Christ and is a messenger of renewal. It is in this witnessing we can then understand the grain of wheat falling into the earth and dying to bear much fruit (John 12.24). If we consider the seed renewed in the way it gives its all to bear fruit, we are encouraged in the renewal of this season. If we fail to see the seed as renewed through it’s giving, we end up feeling cut off, caught up in our stuff and lacking the trust needed for covenant, growth, and renewal.

In this Fifth Week of Lent let us note the moments of renewal and how we have lived in solidarity with each other this Lent. In prayer let us ask for awareness of where we need to be renewed in our living and in our efforts for solidarity. The days of Lent draw short, the Season of New Life is on the horizon, let us be drawn into the heart of Christ. Let us trust renewal is happening as our hearts are made new even in the smallest of ways. Let us trust our God is with us, for he sent his Son who is our “source of eternal salvation” (Hebrews 5.9).


Renew us O God, for we are your people.


Photo Credit: Kai Pilger





(Temporary Contract: May 1 – August 30, 2024; 40 hours a week)

Summary description: This Summer Position primarily attends to groundskeeping, minor repairs and maintenance and setting up and cleaning up of various events. This position reports directly to the Franciscan Local Minister and works closely with the Maintenance Manager.

Specific duties include:


  • Maintaining lawns by mowing, trimming and edging
  • Pruning, trimming plants and trees
  • Raking leaves, cleaning debris, performing general clean-up of landscaping area
  • Working with crew in maintaining trails
  • Operating landscaping equipment such as riding mowers, trimmers, chainsaws

Repairs and Maintenance:

  • Performing routine and preventative maintenance, e.g. painting, repair fences, posts, outdoor benches, moving furniture as needed

Set up and Clean up:

  • Performing routine custodial and cleaning duties of the outdoor grounds and indoor facility
  • Performing particular duties for the 75th anniversary celebration in August

Job Requirements:

  • Ability to work both under general supervision and independently
  • Take pride in your work
  • Have sufficient stamina and strength to do the requirements of the position
  • Have steel toe safety boots
  • Ability to work some evenings and weekends as required
  • Have reliable transportation to work
  • Have a full class five driver’s license


The preferred candidate is a post-secondary student

Salary: $17.80 hour, less required payroll deductions

Please submit your resume and cover letter by April 5th to:



Love: The Depth of God’s Heart

Lenten Reflections with Br. Michael Perras, ofm – Week 4

Love is an action word which is used loosely and also has a lot of power. When used loosely it does not carry strength in it’s meaning, for example: “I love chocolate chip cookies.” However, when love carries power, it sounds more like, “Until my dying breath I will love you” and these words are followed through with actions which show the power of this love.

The Fourth Sunday of Lent is known as Rejoicing Sunday because we are over the half point in our Lenten journey. We may be rejoicing because our Lenten practices are going well or we may be rejoicing because soon it will be Easter and our feeble attempts of Lenten disciplines can fade away until next year. Regardless of where we are this Rejoicing Fourth Sunday of Lent the depth of love is at the forefront of the scriptures.

In the story from Chronicles even in the unraveling of the people and their unfaithfulness, God meets them with compassion to stir their hearts. Even when they do not respond God remains faithful to the power of love. Where have we encountered the love of God in our life? When we feel like life is unraveling do we trust the love of God is meeting us, strengthen us, restoring us?

“For God so loved the world he gave his only Son” is one of the most quoted pieces of scripture. It’s nice to quote, but it must be more than a tag line in our Christian experience. Like Nicodemus we have a choice when we hear these powerful words. We can raise our eyes to see the promise of eternal life through the cross and resurrection or simply leave it as nice story told once a year. We can believe we are saved through the gift of Christ with us or not. We can trust his light is infused in us and enables us to serve others or we can ignore the light. It is good to ask ourselves: Why do I believe? Where has the light of Christ been made present to me? Where have I encountered the depth of God’s heart? What are my reasons (or the cause) for rejoicing this week of Lent?

We are “made alive, raised up with Christ and gifted with eternal life” (Ephesians 2.4-10), these alone are gifts to rejoice in. The challenge is to consider where in our living and in the lives of others do we see these gifts. St. Francis of Assisi once said, “where there is love (charity) and wisdom, there is neither fear nor ignorance.” Let us lean into power of love for from it comes the wisdom to live well, to preach the gospel with our lives and to rejoice in the depth of the love of God which is always for us.


By your Love, O God, you have gifted us Eternal Life. 


Photo Credit: Anna Kolosyuk


The Cross: An Invitation To Begin Again

Lenten Reflections with Br. Michael Perras, ofm

Have you ever had one of those Lents which felt like you were stuck in traffic in a construction zone? Start. Stop. Start. Stop. Move a bit forward. No movement. If so, you are not alone! I know for myself and a few others this Lent has felt this way. It’s not because of a lack of a plan or resources. Sometimes those plans get sidelined, other times they get railroaded. The Third Sunday of Lent is a good time to refocus. St. Francis of Assisi is known for saying, “Let us begin again for up to now we have done very little.” He made this statement near the end of his life. If he could say it then surely we can use it as an invitation to step into this Third Week of Lent.

The very familiar Exodus text of the Ten Commandments gives us some encouragement to begin again as it reminds us to look at our relationships. Who am I in relationship with? How is my relationship with God? Which relationships need healing and forgiveness? How is my relationship with creation and sabbath time? The Ten Commandments are not punishments to live by rather they are our guideposts which can lead us into the depth of relationship. They help us to hear the Lord’s words of everlasting life (Psalm 19) spoken into this season and into our living; inviting us to begin again.

The Season of Lent obviously draws our attention to the Cross, with its “message of the foolishness of the power of God” (1 Corinthians 1.18). St. Francis spent many of his days caught up with his attention on the foolishness of the Cross and Passion of Christ. We may not be able to spend our whole day caught up reflecting on the Cross like St. Francis, but we can begin again each day to contemplate its wisdom and strength. It may be as simple as signing ourselves with the cross as we get out of bed, or considering each street intersection we go through in a day as a reminder of the cross. It may be as we go for a walk and notice branches in a tree or strewn on the ground or take note of the streaks in the sky calling us to praise God for gift of the Cross.

The cross branded onto us in Baptism and Confirmation is not just a one-time moment. It is a being claimed in Christ which is to then live in the Paschal Mystery. The temple of our body is signed with Christ not to be destroyed by the ways of death and destruction of the world, rather to be transformed into the likeness of who we truly are as children of God. May we be consumed this week with courage, goodness and zeal for this Lenten journey whether it is already going well or as we begin again.


By your Cross and Resurrection, Lord Jesus, you have set us free.



Photo Credit: Eberhard Grossgasteiger