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CFC PAYS COURTESY VISIT TO BISHOP ROBERT HARRIS
Wednesday, April 25, 2018

CFC Canada had a joyful and affirming meeting with His Excellency the Most Reverend Robert Harris, Bishop of Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada on February 26. The CFC team, headed by Jun Clarito with his wife Malou, CFC Atlantic Region Coordinators; and Henjie San Juan and Martin Angeles, fulltime pastoral workers for Canada’s Atlantic region, were accompanied by Fr. Rolando Suplido, mission volunteers and local CFC leaders. 

 

The meeting, primarily intended to give updates on the different activities of CFC in the diocese, quickly turned into a spirited discussion about the revitalization of the church in the archdiocese of Saint John. The bishop and the group agreed that there is a dire need for evangelization throughout the archdiocese. However, what people need to realize is that it starts with one’s own personal love story with Jesus Christ.


Upon hearing the testimonies and personal journeys of those present at the meeting, His Excellency expressed his hope to start a movement within the archdiocese that truly sparks and rekindles the personal relationship between people and God. One of the things Couples for Christ shared was the success of the recent Evan-gelization Rally and Leaders Assembly, which happened on February 25th in Blacks Harbour, New Brunswick. The rally brought people of all ages from across the different Atlantic Provinces under one roof, fuelled by the fire of God’s love and what it means to be evangelizers. 

 

There were exchanges of sentiments and concerns about the dangers of Catholics losing sight of what it means to evangelize, thinking evangelization is less of a Catholic practice. His Excellency noted, however, that the opposite is true as evangelization is very much a Catholic mandate as the faithful is called to go and make disciples of all nations. Moreover, evangelization always starts inside the home. 

 

To the delight of everybody, Bishop Harris expressed his love for Filipinos and even narrated that he would always know if a parishioner is a Filipino: “When somebody takes my hand and touches his forehead to it, I know he is a Filipino. Such act of respect is admirable.” He also commented that the coming of CFC into his diocese is very timely for the revitalization of the Church.

 

He gave the group some insights on how CFC can proclaim God’s work in simple ways, such as, “Do not be shy in saying grace before meals in public, cancel and rearrange plans to keep Sunday Mass free, or don’t run away when someone asks you about Jesus or the Catholic faith. These are a few ways we can evangelize in our everyday lives.” 

 

The Bishop likewise gave very inspiring tips on what Catholics can do during the season of Lent: “If you are not confident enough in proclaiming God’s love and His word, spend time reconnecting with the Lord and challenge yourself to read more scripture or learn more about the teachings of the church.” The prelate added, “Much like how people seek recommendations on restaurants, books or the latest apps and technology, they also seek guidance in life to help fill the deeper desires that the secular world cannot provide. That is, they seek the love of God, and as Catholics, once we’ve experienced that love, how could we not share it? In fact it is our duty to share that love and truth, and simply put, that’s exactly what evangelization is.” (Meagan Webb, CFC Mission Volunteer)




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