December 10 was International Human Rights Day and the world’s biggest grassroots event for human rights, Write for Rights organised by Amnesty International. The Cathedral’s Amnesty Action Amnistie will meet in the Chapter House after the 10 am service on Sunday when you are invited to join in writing letters or signing postcards urging freedom for prisoners of conscience.
If you are unable to join us on Sunday, but would like to participate, please visit this link: http://www.writeathon.ca/ Click on “Take Action Now” and after you sign in you will be able to sign petitions. Your support not only helps free prisoners of conscience but also pushes Canadian leaders to protect and respect human rights at home and abroad. You can learn more about Amnesty’s work and how you can get involved.
In Canada support for human rights includes the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. Amnesty is mindful of all the families it has worked with for so many years as part of their No More Stolen Sisters campaign. We too remember these women in our prayers along with all the other victims of hatred, torture and unjust imprisonment.
Prayer is a powerful tool.
You are invited to join Evening Prayer for Climate Justice on the last day of COP21, Friday, Dec. 11th at 5:15 which will be followed by a time of silent public witness on the forecourt.
You might also like to be part of the Advent prayers for peace on Tuesday nights in Advent (Dec 15 and 22) from 5:45 to 6:00pm after Evensong. This is a time of quiet focused prayer seeking peace in the world and in our hearts.
The Cathedral is involved in outreach in many practical ways.
We saw this last Sunday when cheques were presented by SJAG representatives to RAPSIM (an umbrella organisation for groups working to help the homeless), Action Refugiés Montréal (currently working very hard to facilitate the arrival of Syrian refugees) and Montreal South-West Community Ministries (a group headed by Peter Huish which uses restorative justice principles to assist the reintegration of those who have been in prison) Each of these three groups received $1050. An additional donation of $3150 is given to PWRDF for its work overseas.
This money comes out of the cathedral’s annual budget, so thank you to all the people who have made their pledges for 2016 and a reminder to some that the stewardship committee hopes to receive all copies of the community survey and the pledge as soon as possible. Thank you to people who have made visits and people who have responded.
More thanks go to the many people who helped this year’s Fair Trade Christmas Boutique contribute the splendid sum of $708 to the Cathedral Refugee Sponsorship Ministry – thank you to bakers, sellers, buyers and all the other people who made this possible. Jonathan deserves a special vote of gratitude for his tireless organisation. Click here to find out the story behind one of the popular sellers at the Boutique, the handmade cards from Silence in Kolkata, an organisation which supports men and women with disabilities, as well as those who are deaf or hard-of-hearing
Thank you also to Jan and Janet who organised the silent auction which raised money to support the refugee family to be sponsored by the cathedral. They would like to thank both the contributors and the bidders.
Two important requests : for flowers and stewards.
Ø Let flowers speak your thanksgiving and love: Flower sponsors are needed for Christmas and beyond. (Cost: approx. $60). Contact Rob Wells.
Ø Stewards are needed for the Christmas services. There will be a sign-up sheet at the back of the church on Sunday, or you can contact the Cathedral office.
Invitations and reminders
Ø This Saturday at 4:30 The Sing along Messiah, one of the most enjoyable events of the Christmas season where professional and recreational singers share Handel’s wonderful choruses under the baton of Patrick Wedd. Four professional soloists and an orchestra of talented McGill music students.
Ø Pain, partage et prière, the French Bible study and prayer group will meet on Dec 13 at 2pm in the Hollis Lounge.
Ø Saturday, 19 December, 4:30pm : Organ recital by Patrick Wedd: La Nativité du Seigneur by Messaien.. For details visit http://loasismusicale2.blogspot.ca/
Ø Fair Trade Kiosque: Sunday December 20 in the Baptistery after the 10am Eucharist, featuring a small selection of last minute stocking-filler gifts from around the world!
Ø Music, Readings and Dance for Christmas at 4pm on Sunday 20 December – a splendid service of light, words and music. Also live on Radio Ville-Marie 91.3 FM & the internet.
Ø Those who would like to do so from the cathedral are invited to join the congregation of St John the Evangelist after their Christmas morning mass for a Christmas lunch. Voluntary Donation but numbers must be confirmed in advance. Let Paul know if you would like to join the Cathedral Group.
Ø Call for submissions of photos and artwork for an exhibition curated by Natasha Henderson for Nuit blanche on February 28. Contact Natasha or Ann or email the Cathedral office.
Ø Don’t forget to get your parking pass from the vergers if you are planning to park in the forecourt in 2016. If you currently have a parking pass it will expire on December 31, 2015. Starting February 1st the parking policy will be strictly enforced.
Ø LGBTI group meets for friendship, talks, films and food. For details speak to Jean-Jacques Goulet or contact Tania in the office.
Ø Epiphany Potluck Dinner: Save the date: pot luck party on Wednesday 6th January 6.30pm.
There is a special request from Rhonda relating to the Eucharist for all the family and Christmas Pageant Thursday 24th December at 4pm: Attention singers and bakers! Please help make this celebration full and joyous for the many people who will join us. Speak to Rhonda about joining the very casual choir or providing Christmas cookies
Finally a very important reminder about Cathedral Forum which will meet next Tuesday, December 15, in the middle of all these Advent and Christmas events. All congregation members invited.