St. Joan of Arc in Toronto, Canada, is a vibrant parish where Pastor Fr. Dan Callahan, SA, and Associate Pastor Fr. Bob Langone, SA, live out the parish mission: “Living and Proclaiming the Gospel through Stewardship, All are Welcome.”
Gospel Stewardship is inspired by Fr. Paul’s “Union that Nothing Be Lost” prayer, which calls parishioners to invest all of their time, talent, substance and opportunities to the Glory of God, the good of neighbor, and participation in the welcome and evangelization of all. This style of ministry was first introduced to the parish by the Atonement Friars 21 years ago, and continues today in the many liturgies and events taking place at the parish. Recently, Fr. Dan shared a few of the ways that the parish has been living out their mission.
- This past Easter Vigil brought several new souls into the Catholic faith at St. Joan of Arc. Three adults were baptized through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA), four children received the Sacrament of Baptism, and four other adults received Confirmation and their first Holy Communion. The joy of the parishioners and their priests was evident throughout the whole evening as they celebrated unity of faith, a key tenet of the Atonement charism.
- This Spring, St Joan of Arc extended their sponsorship of an Interfaith Garden on shared space between their parish and the Redeemer Lutheran Church next door. All the parishioners work together to grow vegetables for the local soup kitchens and homeless shelters, which serve people from all walks and manners of life. The parishioners also volunteer weekly at a local soup kitchen.
- In celebration of the 100th Anniversary of St. Joan of Arc parish, a special evening mass was celebrated at a local venue with seating to accommodate 300 people, and was immediately followed by a gala dinner dance. His Eminence Thomas Cardinal Collins, the Archbishop of Toronto, celebrated a Eucharistic Liturgy which was projected on monitors throughout the venue.
St. Joan of Arc parish is a testament to the commitment of both the people of Toronto and the Atonement Friars. The Friars are active all over the world in the daily lives of others, demonstrating the love and fellowship Servant of God Fr. Paul Wattson, SA, set out to share.