Ellen Bennett

Reflection – Who Taught You To Pray?

On Mother’s Day, 2003, I attended mass at the Shrine of the Most Holy Redeemer, a church, but not a parish, strategically located amid casinos and hotels on The Strip in Las Vegas.  19 years later, I can still remember the homily from the presiding priest, who shared the story of the very first Liturgy he had ever presided on Mother’s Day in his home parish, parents and siblings proudly sitting in the front pew.  “Now,” he said, “I knew ...

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Reflection – Those Who Wander

On January 19th, a family of four were found frozen to death on the Canada-US border in Manitoba.  It was a shocking and startling headline I spotted when perusing the CBC app on my cell phone.  I felt sick.  How could such a thing possibly happen in this land of opportunity?   A land which had called the Patel family to immigrate, just as it had called my ancestors and the ancestors of any of us not of Indigenous descent in this country.  Since then, I ...

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Reflection – When We Believe

What do we believe? If we allow the words we effortlessly recite at every Sunday Eucharist during the Creed to resonate within us, we should know.   In this Sunday’s Gospel for the 4th Sunday of Advent, Elizabeth says of Mary, “Blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her by the Lord.”  Blessed is she who believed.  That resonates with me this week.

It has been a tough week for our province – ...

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Reflection – Are You Able to Drink the Cup that I Drink?

Be careful what you wish for.  That’s what popped into my head on reading the Gospel this week.  

It’s a little startling to hear the request James and John make of Jesus – this apparent grab for power.  Even more startling if you read the verses prior to the ones we hear proclaimed from Mark’s Gospel.  

“You do not know what you are asking,” Jesus says.  But in fact, they SHOULD know what they are asking, because they have JUST been told.  “Jesus took the 12 ...

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Reflection – Another Mystery of Faith

Bridging us from the great 50-day season of Easter to Ordinary Time, are a couple of significant feast days in the Church’s liturgical calendar.  One of these is the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity or Trinity Sunday, which we celebrate today.  In the eyes of the Church, “a solemnity is a feast day of the highest rank, celebrating a mystery of faith.”  In other words, a solemnity is kind of a big deal.

The Trinity is kind of a big ...

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Reflection – Set the Example

Today we begin the holiest week in the Church’s calendar, aptly entitled Holy Week.  Despite being seen by many Christians as such, it is not Christmas but Easter, which is the highpoint of the Church’s liturgical year.  In a few days we will celebrate Triduum – Three Days that commemorate the Paschal Mystery of Jesus Christ and move us from Lent to this great season of Easter.  Triduum is a three-part continuous liturgy – Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter ...

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Reflection – Sitting in the Belly of the Whale

Jonah was a reluctant prophet to put it mildly.  In that short book of the bible, a mere four chapters, we read his story.  In the proclaimed excerpt, we do not hear of his initial reluctance to take on the task which God calls him to.  Jonah was the guy who ended up in the belly of the big fish, traditionally a whale, when he is thrown overboard by the sailors of the ship he has taken to elude God, ...

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Reflection – Living as a King

Christ the King Sunday, and Matthew provides us a description of king: one who looks after ‘the least of these brothers and sisters’ when they are hungry, thirsty, naked, sick, imprisoned, strangers.  Or one who may himself be experiencing some of that.  Hard for us to reconcile our image of kingship with the image Matthew offers … no signs of palaces, crowns, riches in these images. 

Through Baptism, we become part of the Body of Christ, “anointed priest, prophet and king” ...

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Reflection – The Unfairness of It All

I was in high school (a Roman Catholic all girls high school) and dating the captain of the boys’ Roman Catholic high school hockey team.  There was an eagerly anticipated big game scheduled for the weekend.  However, I was in the school choir, who were in the midst of the Kiwanis Music Festival, kind of a big deal in music circles in St. John’s, NL in the 1970’s.  Our director, who knew a thing or two about teenage girls, and what was going on in the ...

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Reflection – To Be Understood, As To Understand

In the mid 1990’s, singer Joan Osborne sang What If God Was One of Us, which asked the question: “If you were faced with Him in all His glory, What would you ask if you had just one question?”  Then, and now, I am with Solomon – understanding and wisdom. 

When charged by God with “Ask what I should give you,” Solomon responds “an understanding mind to govern your people able to discern between good and evil.”  You have before you a woman who has ...

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