Saturday, August 17
The gentle smile and the joy of Msgr. Ocáriz, who came to meet some 200 women of Opus Dei and their friends, quickly chased away the clouds that covered the skies of Montreal.
His first words were an encouragement to welcome God in our lives, to spread the message and the joy of the Gospel "from sea to sea", respecting the freedom of each, according to the spirit of Opus Dei. He reminded the audience that people need joy and are attracted by the generosity and joy of their Christian friends.
The prelate recalled that this ocean of apostolic efficacy presupposes a soul - a life - given to God, nourished by his grace, and who collaborates with Christ, counting on him and giving him everything: thoughts, desires, work.
In his answers, the Father provided many examples of how to accompany others by widening one’s heart: in the dialogue with a person who does not share our ideas, the main objective is to cultivate friendship and express our point of view, while making clear that our disagreements do not separate us; in the face of suffering caused by infertility in a couple, never forget that God loves the couple and asks them to dedicate themselves to a larger amount of people, transforming this cross into life; as for grandparents, they have an important role to play towards their grandchildren - to be present in their lives, to give them advice, to be interested in their activities and their problems, and to be a bridge with their parents, encouraging confidence.
According to Msgr. Ocáriz, the key is to remain united to Christ and to identify oneself with Him, in order to build the Church through our ordinary life, seeking to sanctify our work and to aim for sanctity wherever we live.
After asking everyone to pray for the Holy Father, the Prelate was thanked by a family quartet who played a good Quebec reel (spoons included!): a potpourri of music by Gilles Vigneault. The spiritual "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands", sang by Kathleen, had preceded the performance.
The Father concluded by inviting the participants to pay great attention to fraternal charity, unity, service, joy and understanding, since this is the content of the New Commandment.
At 3:15 p.m. Msgr. Fernando Ocáriz had a get-together with more than a hundred and twenty men at the theatre L’Entrepôt, in Montreal. He started with a consideration about the motto of Canada “A mari usque ad mare” and asked everyone to pray for the Pope and for the Church, reminding them that Pope Francis always asks people meeting him to pray for him.
The get-together started with an ice-breaking intervention - literally. François, dressed as a hockey player, introduced the Father to one of the most popular sports in Canada, and wished the Father to score many goals at the get together. The Father gave a hug to François and reminded all present that the sportsmanship spirit that St Josemaria recommended for Christian life consists of an ongoing conversion, starting again and again as needed.
- Stay up to date on the latest news on the pastoral trip of the Prelate to Canada by following us on Twitter.