Bishops Receive Reports from the Catholic Organization for Life and Family, Development and Peace, and the Canadian Catholic Aboriginal Council

Wednesday, September 17 2014

(CCCB – Ottawa)… The third day of the Plenary Assembly of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) opened with Mass in the Maronite Rite. The principal celebrant was the Most Reverend Paul-Marwan Tabet, Eparchial Bishop of Maronite Catholics in Canada.

Later in the morning, the Bishops received reports from the Catholic Organization for Life and Family (COLF), the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace (CCODP), and the Canadian Catholic Aboriginal Council. In addition, they received the 2013 financial statements and began their review of the 2015 budgetary provisions. In the afternoon, the meeting of the Bishops of the English Sector was held, while an opportunity for media training was offered to the French Sector Bishops with the collaboration of Salt + Light TV.

In his report, the Chairman of COLF, the Most Reverend Noël Simard, Bishop of Valleyfield, announced that COLF, with the support of the CCCB, will shortly launch a National Campaign for Palliative and Home Care, and against Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide. COLF will offer resources which will be available at no cost on a new Website to be dedicated exclusively to the national campaign. The resources will include a video, a prayer card for life, and suggested prayers of the faithful. The CCCB’s support of the campaign is related to its National Pastoral Initiative for Life and Family, launched in 2011. The CCCB webpage for the Pastoral Initiative already includes a special section with resources and links to other websites on euthanasia and assisted suicide.

The Most Reverend John Boissonneau, Auxiliary Bishop of Toronto, presented the annual report of the CCCB Standing Committee on Development and Peace, as well as the activities report by CCODP. The Development and Peace activities report detailed its response to the emergency situation in Syria, as well as describing the solidarity visits over the past year to Ethiopia and most recently to the Philippines. Bishop Boissonneau pointed out that the Plenary Assembly later this week will receive a Bishop from Haiti who will speak about hunger and food shortage, the theme for the 2014 CCODP fall education and action campaign. The Most Reverend Paul-André Durocher, Archbishop of Gatineau and CCCB President, thanked the members of the Standing Committee for their excellent work in accompanying CCODP, and in assisting in communications and collaboration between the Conference and Development and Peace.

Cause for the Beatification of the Venerable Marie-Élisabeth Turgeon

At the beginning of the day, the Most Reverend Pierre-André Fournier, Archbishop of Rimouski and President of the Assembly of Québec Catholic Bishops (AECQ), shared the joy of his archdiocese at learning that earlier this morning Pope Francis authorized the promulgation of the Decree recognizing a miracle attributed to the Venerable Marie-Élisabeth Turgeon. Mother Marie-Élisabeth was a Canadian woman religious (1840-1881) who founded the Sisters of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary (Soeurs de Notre-Dame-du-Rosaire). The promulgation had been approved by the Holy Father following an audience with His Eminence Angelo Cardinal Amato, S.D.B., Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.