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Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)

Dear Parishioners, I thought it would be good to present a little bit of the ‘brothers’ life. We are not the same as diocesan priests, we are called religious priests.  There are several core differences; a diocesan priest gives his life to serve in a diocese, a religious priest gives his life in a community to God.  A diocesan priest does not take vows, rather he promises chastity and to not go against the Church, while a religious priest makes vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. Though diocesan priests often live together in community and help each other out, a religious is by its very nature in a community.  A diocesan priest stays in one diocese while a religious goes wherever his community asks him to go. Some practical details of our lives that may interest you: the five of us, on average spend three to five hours together praying and with all of our weekly recreations, community meals, community studies, Bible sharing’s, meetings (which we call chapters), we often spend up to seven hours a day together. Over time we really get to know each other, and by God’s grace we (usually!) get along quite well. 😀 On an average day the brothers’ schedule looks like the following: 6:00 am – Wake 6:15 am – Silent adoration in St Teresa’s Church 7:00 am – Pray the morning prayer (chant the Psalms and listen to a passage from the Bible) 7:30 am – Breakfast 8:00 am – Personal time for reading the Bible, preparing homilies etc. 9:00 am – Each brother goes to his separate work 12:00 pm – Mass and midday prayer 1:15 pm – Lunch in community 5:00 pm – Pray evening prayer (chant the Psalms and listen to a passage from the Bible)  5:30 pm – Adoration at St Teresa’s Church 7:00 pm – Meetings, dinner, personal time, visit families etc. 9:30 pm – 15 min of night prayer in community Hopefully this helps you to get to know a bit better who we are and what our life is like.  Please do keep us in your prayer. In Him, Fr Michael Therese 

Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)

Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of Victory, Saint Teresa and Saint Bernadette. The words of Jesus today speak of the incredible calling put upon each one of us as members of the body of Christ.  We are to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world!  It is through us, that God’s grace preserves the world from falling into tastelessness and into darkness.  We are a people set apart but also inserted right into the middle of this beautiful world.  To be the salt and the light we are to keep peace with one another, be gracious in our speech, to be true, to fight for justice, to be merciful, and most of all to love one another as God’s loves us.  This is our calling!  This is our mission!   And we are in this together. We are glad to start this time of transition and merging of our churches into one parish.  The brothers of Saint John look forward to getting to know you all and joining forces. Here is a quick introduction of the current brothers living in Christchurch: Father Michael Therese:  Born and raised in Northern California USA, Father Michael has spent his time as a religious in France, India, and Texas, USA before coming to Christchurch.  He is now the Parish Priest and Prior.  Father Sean Mary:  Born and bred in Brazil, Father Sean has spent his religious life in Texas and New Jersey, USA, the Philippines, France, and Switzerland before coming to Christchurch.  He is our Assistant Parish Priest. Father Philip: Hails from Indiana, USA.  As a religious ,Father Philip has lived in Illinois and New Jersey, USA, and France, before coming to Christchurch.   He will be a supporting parish priest and will head up the chaplaincy for the Universities of Canterbury, Lincoln, and Ara.   Brother Jan:  Raised in the great city of London, Brother Jan, after spending several years in France with the community has come to Christchurch for his ‘apostolic years’ in which he helps with formation programs, runs bible studies, and supports parish ministries.    Brother Jerome was born, bred, and raised in the Philippines, he is our most recent arrival, just coming in November 2019.  Brother Jerome has spent his religious life in the Philippines (Cebu), and France before coming to Christchurch for his apostolic years.  Among other activities brother Jerome will help lead our Youth Ministry Program. From all of us, know of our prayers and our desire to journey together with each one of you.   God bless, Fr Philip L to R Fr Philip, Br Jan, Fr Sean Mary & Fr Michael Therese