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Day Four: More on our trip to Assisi

Last updated on October 22, 2012

I said yesterday it was a long bus ride, and it was, but interrupted with a pit stop in some little unnamed community with a small confectionary and many bathrooms. It was obviously set up to provide services to people on their way to Assisi. More on the young “Miracle” boy we serendipitously met while at the stop. I don’t know how we found out he was on board the Seattle Diocese bus but when we did many from our bus had photos taken with the boy, his parents and grandparents. I spoke with Father Jim Sauer who, at the time Jake Finkbonner became afflicted with Flesh Eating disease, was pastor to three parishes on the Indian Reserve (they still call them that in the U.S.A) to which the Finkbonners belonged.  Father Sauer told me, “The people on that reserve have a particular devotion to Blessed Kateri and when I heard what happened to Jake, I asked all three parishes to pray to Blessed Kateri on behalf of the boy.”  The boy is now 11 and has undergone numerous surgeries to repair...

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Day Four: Trip to Assisi

Last updated on October 19, 2012

Spent the day in Assisi, a three hour bus ride from Rome. Fog most of the way so didn't see much of the country side. Fog cleard while we were inside and had good views of the outside of the basilica and the countryside below. Assisi is built on a hill. Visited St. Francis basilica where Archbishop Bohan, Fathers, Keiter, Danolo and Wojciech con-celebrated mass. Then over to St. Clare on the other side of Assisi. Very impressive place. I'll add more tomorrow when I believe the schedule will give me more time.

At a pit stop on the way to Assisi, we met a group from Seattle and discovered Jake Finkbonner was among them. He is the boy whose parents and community prayed to Blessed Kateri when he contracted Flesh Eating Disease after a basketball accident. He was not expected to live, had the last sacraments administered and was ready to die. He didn't. Medical people had no explanation and the Vatican declared it a miracle and it was that miracle...

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Day Three: Pilgrimage To Rome - The Coliseum

Last updated on October 19, 2012

A fast train ride, and I mean a fast train ride, to Rome. The train hit 300 kms an hour several times and made the almost 500 kms trip to Rome in 3.5 hours. We were supposed to admire the scenery while travelling through the Tuscany area but what we saw mostly was blur. I exaggerate. We did see some lovely villages located on hilltops, lovely vineyards and other fields, located in picturesque hills in between nodding off to catch up on some sleep. A nice surprise awaiting us in the Rome hotel lobby was Archbishop Bohan who warmly greeted everyone.

Getting on the train was a hassle. The Milan central train station is huge, I mean really huge. Think Union Station in Toronto and quadruple it at least, beautiful architecture and of course, like most other buildings, marble. Our herder, Luigi, that really is his name, does a great job of keeping us together, despite the penchant of a few to wander off. He had to leave us at the Coliseum and retrieve his family who were arriving...

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He’s 97 years old and had to sit in a chair but as he spoke he become more animated and his voice became stronger. He is Monsignor Capovilla, former secretary to Pope John XXIII and he was a surprise guest when we visited the summer home of Cardinal Angelo Roncalli who became Pope John XXIII. He resides in what is now a museum dedicated to Pope John. The visit with him was a highlight of the day as we spent the morning visiting sites where Roncalli was born, baptized and lived as a child and the afternoon in Brescia where St. Angela Merici, foundress of the Ursuline Order lived and died.

It was a long day of walking. Buses are not allowed in the city centre so we walked to our destinations.

Pope John lived in a compound owned by his father and an uncle, both sharecroppers who worked the nearby fields. It must have been a lively place because there were 10 children in one family and nine in the other. Like many other residences here, the street entrance is an archway...

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Day One: Pilgrimage To Rome

Last updated on October 17, 2012
Witnessing the canonization of Blessed Kateri Tekakawitha

Hello from Bergamo, Italy. We’re about an hour out of Milan somewhere near the boyhood home of Angelo Roncalli, better known as Pope John XXIII, who called the Catholic Bishops of the world together in 1962 for Vatican II.

Before I tell you about the trip so far, I want to describe to you the Duomo, the world’s third largest church which we saw today.  Awe inspiring is an understatement. Constructed entirely in marble it dominates Duomo square in central Milan, Italy.  Its white spires, all 135 of them along with some 3,400 statues, all carved in marble except for one, it took some 500 years to complete. The lone non-marble statue is a four meter tall gold leaf-on-steel rendering of Mary, the Mother of God to whom the cathedral is dedicated but everyone calls it the Duomo. It rises about 10 meters above anything else. Its magnificent stained glass windows are hundreds of years old; the tomb of St. Bartholomew is...

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Bl. Kateri Tekakwitha on Salt and Light.

Last updated on October 12, 2012

Father Thomas Rosica CSB reflects on the life of Bl. Kateri Tekakwitha in honour of her feast day on April 17(Canada) & July 14 (USA). Illustrations from Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha. Published by Novalis, 2011. Anne E. Nueberger, Author with illustrations by Kevin Davidson. Additional images courtesy of Catholic News Service

Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha: Mohawk Mystic of North America Model of the First Evangelization and New Evangelization

Bienheureuse Kateri Tekakwitha - Sainte le 21 octobre 2012


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I will be among a delegation of 27 people from the Regina Archdiocese and the Saskatoon Diocese on a pilgrimage to attend the canonization of Blessed Kateria Tekakawitha and six others: Pope Benedict XVI will canonize 7 new saints, including 2 with American connections, on October 21.

Tekakwitha was a young Mohawk woman who converted to Catholicism. She will become the first Native American canonized as a saint. Blessed Marianne Cope, a German nun who followed St. Damien of Molokai in ministering to lepers in Hawaii. Also canonized in the same ceremony will be: Jacques Berthieu, a French Jesuit; Pedro Calungsod, a Filipino lay catechist and martyr; Giovanni Battista Piamarta, an Italian priest; Maria del Carmen (nee Maria Salles y Barangueras), the Spanish foundress of the Conceptionist Missionary Sisters of Teaching; and Anna Schaffer, a German lay woman. “ 

 The purpose of my attendance is to provide a series of web site stories as the pilgrimage proceeds from Milan...

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by Frank Flegel

Two Regina men were conferred with Papal Knighthoods of the Order of Pope St. Sylvester during the September 5, 11:00 A.M. mass at Holy Rosary Cathedral. The knighthood is conferred on Roman Catholic Laymen, although it can also be conferred on non-Catholics, who are actively involved in the life of the church as it is exemplified in the exercise of their professional duties and mastership of the different arts.

Paul Hill is CEO of the Hill Companies that operates in real estate, broadcasting, insurance, oil and gas, manufacturing and technology in Canada and the United States. His biography lists his association and activities in a multitude of national and international business, educational, charitable and voluntary organizations. 

Dale M. Scrivens is Managing Partner with the Regina law firm of Bertram Scrivens Macleod. His biography also lists many and varied business, professional and charitable organizations. Both men...

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Last updated on July 18, 2011

by Frank Flegel

Sometime this fall Regina Archdiocesan parish councils will, if they haven’t already done so, split into two councils; a parish pastoral council and a parish finance council. They will be two separate identifiable bodies both answering to the pastor. “That’s a very important point,” said Fr. John Weckend. “Both the parish pastoral council and the finance council are consultative bodies. The pastor is still the one who makes final decisions.” 

Weckend emphasized however, that in the new guidelines Archbishop Bohan spends a great deal of time explaining how ‘consultation’ is to be understood. “Consultation requires an ongoing disposition to be open to change. Yes, you do need to have a person who makes an ultimate decision but it does require that it be a decision based on the wisdom of the community and the person who ultimately then makes decisions based on that should have taken into serious consideration the advice and consultation he has been given...

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