St. Leonard Catholic Parish
Manotick, Ont

"Where disciples grow"
E-Newsletter for Sunday, Dec 20th
This Sunday marks the Fourth Sunday of Advent. Only 5 days until Christmas Day! There are very few seats available for the Christmas Eve Masses due to our Covid-19 seating capacity restrictions. You can make reservations by visiting https://stleonardsparish.ca/Mass/ or by calling the parish office at (613) 692-4254.

If you have a reservation and have decided not to attend, please cancel your reservation to provide seating for someone else. Please check the reservation system or the Parish Office for any last minute availability.
Pastor's Message
The Annunciation and Mary's "Yes"

In case you hadn’t noticed, with everything else going on around us this year, Christmas is almost here. Christmas week really begins with today’s Gospel message of the Annunciation of the Lord from St. Luke. As we light the fourth Advent Candle this Sunday we are called to focus on love and faith. Mary, the future Mother of God, provides a wonderful example of these two qualities that are in such short supply in our world today.
 
We all know the story well. The angel Gabriel comes to a little town in Galilee called Nazareth, and to a little virgin girl, betrothed to a man named Joseph of the House of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary. He lays out for her the divine plan in which she is to play a critical role: “And now you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the most high.” (Luke 1:32) Given what she knows, Mary responds, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” (Luke 1:34) What the angel has told her does not conform to her expectations, and she is, understandably enough, perplexed.

Then the messenger says: “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the most high will overshadow you.” (Luke 1:35). In other words: someone much more powerful than you will overwhelm your physical, moral, intellectual, and spiritual capacities, and in the measure that you cooperate with this intervention, you will come to a life you hadn’t imagined. Gabriel reminds Mary of her cousin Elizabeth’s unlikely pregnancy and adds, “Nothing will be impossible for God” (Luke 1:37).

Søren Kierkegaard, the Danish philosopher and theologian, said that authentic faith is a “passion for the impossible.” It is a surrender in love to that which the mind cannot see. When Mary says, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word,” she exhibits such complete and total faith. It is Mary’s “yes” to the impossible that makes possible the Incarnation of God. Without the Son of God taking on human flesh, the fullness of our redemption and salvation would never have taken place. Mary’s faith allowed God’s love to come into human form for the transformation of the world.

This Christmas we need to remember God’s great love for us and like Mary, believe in Him and place our trust in Him. The entire reason for Christmas is the love of God. God sent Jesus from Heaven to earth some 2000 years ago so that we could get to know Him and learn to trust him and love Him back. Jesus came to give us human beings what we really need most in life: hearts filled with love.

When you were a child on Christmas morning, do you remember how it felt when you received an incredibly special gift? For me one year it was the latest version of Nintendo, all beautifully wrapped under the tree with my name on it. I was both excited and elated at the same time. I felt joy and I knew in my heart that I was loved. Not sure if it was my parents or Santa Claus. 😊 But somebody had listened to my wish and cared for me greatly. I knew it for certain!

Today is a suitable occasion to look right into our hearts, to see where we stand with God. Do we fully appreciate just how much that God loves us? Like Mary, are we willing to place our faith and trust in Jesus? During the week we shall be keeping the feast of Christmas. The Baby in the manger (the greatest gift of all!) will remind us of what God has done and is still doing for us. What are we doing in return? Have we shown our gratitude by living as true followers of Christ? God is asking this of us today. Shall our answer be: "behold here I am Lord, your humble and grateful servant, let it be done to me according to your word”?

God bless you folks, Father Gerard
St. Leonard's Virtual
Children's Liturgy
As we continue to navigate the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, The St. Leonard Children’s Liturgy Team offers virtual Children’s Liturgy of the Word videos to keep our children connected to their faith! The videos include prayers, the week’s Gospel reading, lessons, all geared for our younger parishioners.
Worship
Christmas and New Year's Mass Schedule
Due to capacity and social distancing restrictions caused by the pandemic, ALL SEATING FOR CHRISTMAS EVE AND CHRISTMAS DAY MASSES WILL BE VIA PRE-REGISTRATION ONLY (ONLINE or Via TELEPHONE).
If a Mass is fully booked there will be NO WALK-IN SEATING allowed. Please note that only families living under the same roof may register together.

We appreciate your understanding as we strive to safely accommodate as many people as possible during this challenging time of pandemic.
You can make reservations by visiting https://stleonardsparish.ca/Mass/ or by calling the parish office at (613) 692-4254.

Thursday, Dec 24th: 4:00 p.m., 5:30 p.m., 7:00 p.m., 8:30 p.m. (Very few seats available)

Friday, Dec 25th: 9:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m.

New Year’s Day, Friday, Jan 1st: 10:00 am

Christmas Confession Times:

Sat.  Dec. 19  9 a.m. to 12 p.m.----2 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
 
Tue. Dec. 22  9 a.m. to 12 p.m.----2 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.----6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

How Do I Go to Confession?
Regular Mass Times

Registration is required for all Weekend Masses. Please note that no reservations are required for Weekday Masses. You can make reservations by visiting stleonardsparish.ca/mass or by calling the parish office at (613) 692-4254.  

  • Wednesday-Friday: 9 a.m.
  • Saturday: 4:30 p.m.
  • Sunday: 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.

Confession times

  • Saturday 3:00 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Office Hours

  • Tuesday – Friday: 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Masses Online

You are encouraged to join us in person for Mass this weekend if possible. As well, you can watch all Masses from St. Leonard online at the scheduled Mass times (listed above) by clicking here.
Bishop Barron's Sunday Sermon

Bishop Barron’s Sunday Sermons will air every Sunday morning at 8:15 AM Eastern Time. Click on Bishop Barron’s YouTube channel and then chose the Sunday you wish to view.

Reading 1, Second Samuel 7:1-5, 8-11, 16
Responsorial Psalm, Psalms 89:2-3, 4-5, 27, 29
Reading 2, Romans 16:25-27
Gospel, Luke 1:26-38
Evangelization
The Call Home: A Message From Our New Archbishop

I’m writing to share with you an exciting initiative for this Christmas. It’s a media campaign titled “The Call Home.” The campaign was created out of a concern that some of our brothers and sisters who come to Mass at Christmas don’t come at any other time of year. In years past we’ve been able to accommodate them but this year will be very different.

A wonderful group of Catholics from our archdiocese have created a message that we hope will reach those who know that Christmas is important but aren’t sure what it means for their lives. The Call Home uses local personal testimonies to present the basic message of the Gospel. Near the end of the video viewers will be invited to respond to God calling them to be at home with him. The video will conclude with a personal greeting from me. I encourage you to share this video with your family and friends.

As the Church of Ottawa-Cornwall, let us pray that despite the challenges of celebrating Christmas during a pandemic, we will see hearts converted to our loving God.

✠ Marcel Damphousse
Archbishop of Ottawa-Cornwall
Charity
Christmas Hamper Program
Just before Christmas the Amor Dei volunteers gathered to bring together 16 hampers of food, gifts and sundry items for needy families in our community. This year the Christmas Hamper program was lead by Roxy McCarthy and she is pictured below with team members Deltra Van Dongen, Catherine Stark, Father Gerard, Geri Ingham, and Norm Chapman. Stephane McNichol and Sean Hines were also key team members. They wanted to extend a big THANK YOU to all of those that supported the program through their time, energy, food and financial resources. What a great community effort!
Youth
Next Virtual Youth Alpha Night is Saturday, January 2nd 7-8:30 pm! 
Come hang out virtually with your peers and also take in Youth Alpha.

Topic: “Telling Others”
To join, email Colleen O’Mahony-Menton before 6:45 pm, Jan 2nd (colleen.menton@rogers.com).
Stewardship
Thank You For Your Financial Support!
Please remember your local parish during this Christmas Season. If you are able to provide financial support to St. Leonard's , please consider making a donation online or you can mail your envelope to the Church at the following address:
St. Leonard Roman Catholic Parish
5332 Long Island Road
Manotick, Ontario
K4M 1E8
Faith Formation
Celebrate Advent by Taking a Spiritual Journey to the Holy Land

On behalf of the Augustine Institute, we are offering Adventus: A Spiritual Pilgrimage for you and your family this Advent and Christmas season. In light of the separation we face as communities, this special documentary allows Catholics all around the world to unite and make a spiritual pilgrimage to the Holy Land to see the places associated with Christ’s birth. Click below to watch this inspiring presentation and please share with others!
Media Worth Sharing
Truly loving Mary will never lessen our faith in God, or take attention away from Christ. 
Parishioner Feedback: We Love Your Input!
Dear Parishioners we are very interested in your feedback. If have any comments and/or suggestions as it relates to any of our Parish activities, including the E-Newsletter, please click here. If you would like a direct response to your suggestion, please include your email address.
St. Leonard Parish
office@stleonardsparish.ca
www.stleonardsparish.ca