St. Philip Neri Parish in Toronto was the scene of the Mass and reception to mark the 105th World Day of Migrants and Refugees. The day began with Mass celebrated by Archbishop Lawrence Saldanha, the homily by Bishop Wayne Kirkpatrick and many concelebrants. In his homily Bishop Kirkpatrick spoke about the gospel passage describing the story of the rich man and the poor man named Lazarus. The rich man did not enter the kingdom of God but the poor man did – he gave service to another. We are like the poor man when we help settle refugees and immigrants to Canada. He also mentioned the Mission Trip to Bangkok Thailand from the Office for Refugee in the Archdiocese of Toronto (ORAT).
Deacon Rudy Ovcjak was the leader of the trip. They managed to interview several families for sponsorship and coming to Canada. The Archdiocese of Toronto will sponsor some of these families, and the Christian Churches in Canada are being asked to sponsor some as well.
Archbishop Saldanha gave a presentation on the situation in Pakistan at this time. He described the political strife, the economic difficulties, and the deterioration of family life. He is very thankful to Canada for being a country to step up in support of Christians from Pakistan.
The video “Stressful Reality” showing the conditions in Pakistan was screened.
Following the presentations some refreshments were served.