Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Christmas Mass with an Iraqi Catholic priest

Yesterday Fred and I attended St. Joseph Portugese Roman Catholic church in Oakville. It was a beautiful Mass, church and homily. They have no website.

The priest is an Iraqi Catholic. He explained that Bethlehem is made up of two words in Aramaic. "Beth" which means house, and "lehem" which means bread. Bread is universal. Jesus was born in the house of bread for all mankind.

They have three masses in this church, one in English, one in Portugese, and one for the Chaldean people:
"Chaldean Neo-Aramaic, or simply Chaldean, is a Northeastern Neo-Aramaic language spoken throughout a large region stretching from the plain of Urmia, in northwestern Iran, to the Nineveh plains, in northern Iraq, together with parts of southeastern Turkey."
The priest also told us why the shepherds were chosen as the first people to greet Jesus. In those days shepherds were the lowest strata of society. They had no rights, couldn't testify in courts, etc. They were the most marginalized. And they were chosen to bear witness to Jesus's birth.

There were only a handful of people present for this most amazing Christmas Mass I have ever attended. Others have no idea what they missed.

Our Lady of Fatima

Nativity scene. St. Francis if Assissi said we need to become part of the Nativity scene. You can see that sentiment in this amazing scene.

A beautiful mural of the three seers of Fatima and St. John the baptist to the right

St. Michael the Archangel crushing the head of the serpent. The Church really needs that in these days.

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