had a talk on Affirmations, which are positive ways to
love others and to help others be happy, plus our usual safe sharing
small group discussions, a fun ice breaker game, and socializing.
Stephen Robinson gave us an great talk on "Truth and Lies,"
including that the truth is important, there are many lies on the
Internet and in the media today, Jesus is the ultimate truth, and
ultimately you will have to decide if you believe in faith of the
had a great meeting on the Joy of Volunteering. Jim and Matthew
shared some of their volunteer experiences, followed by everyone
else. It was beautiful! And we had a great ice breaker game, safe
sharing small group discussions, and fun playing after the meeting.
Jonathan gave a great talk on "How can we say God exists in a world
like this?" He taught us about physical evil (in events) and moral
evil (from free will), and that God allows evil in order for it to
create a greater good. Jesus experienced the full weight of human
moral evil, and is the counter weight to all the evil in the world.
Sr. Helena Burns, fsp, gave us an awesome talk on the amazing Theology of the Body. The Theology of the Body is the why to the Catholic Church's sexual teaching, and so much more. It starts with human body and leads into theology and philosophy. It's all about what it means to be a human person - body and soul - and what comes next when we get our bodies back at the Resurrection of the Body!
Here are the three handouts that Sr. Helena sent us for the meeting:
On Wednesday, June 23, 2021, Sr. Helena also did a second presentation to our whole Parish. And, after that, she also generously sent us these two great list of excellent resources:
Cristino gave us a great talk on How to Pray. He taught us that
prayer is a relationship with God, and gave us many ways to build
this friendship, by sharing our thoughts, feelings, and concerns
with God. And he gave us some great tips and examples on how, when,
and where to pray every day.
McGinn talked about how to get a great job in tough times. He gave
us lots of tips, and encouraged us to go for our dream job at our
dream company, to get the job you really want, and that you can
really use your gifts to help people.
Dominique Ma, gave us an awesome talk on "Overcoming Fear" with lots
of tips to deal with day to day stress, fear, and anxiety, and how
our Catholic Faith can also really help us with overcoming fear and
having a great life. If you have any questions for Dominique, you
can reach through her website: www.dominiquema.ca.
Fr. Jonathan gave us a great talk on the 4 levels of happiness. Here is a PDF of his presentation on Four Levels of Happiness.
therapist Mark Kolodziej gave us a great talk on "Depression and What
We Can Do About It." He taught us do something when you don't feel
like it, set goals and find purpose, be thankful for all your many
graces, and do emotional self-care for one hour minimum per day. He
also showed us how these are all taught in the Catholic Faith, and he
explained how and why these work. If you would like to reach Mark, you
can reach him through his website: www.martha7.com.
We had an awesome presentation and discussion from Dr. Bob Schulz ("the" Dr. Bob!) on "Leadership and Purpose in Your Professional Life." He taught us, with lots of great stories and examples, and with his great energy of course, that most of leadership is doing what you would want others to do to you, and to look and see if you are making other smile.
We had an
inspiring Lenten prayer and message from Pope Francis. Then Fr.
Jonathan explained how Lent is not just a time for giving up things,
but in giving up some things to make room for generosity of spirit,
giving of your time, generosity towards others, and through prayer,
generosity towards God.
shared our favourite photos, we had our usual "safe sharing" small
groups for interesting discussion and socializing, and we played
Skrblio at the end.
Here is the
poster of the beautiful Prayer for Lent from Pope
Francis, and the inspiring Message of His Holiness Pope
Francis for Lent 2021.
Wright explained the geography of Israel and the Middle East, and how
it affected many wars and conflicts in the Old Testament. He also
included many photographs of the area to show us what it was like for
Jesus and before him in the Old Testament, and he explained some very
powerful symbolism in the language Jesus used, and why it was so
powerful at the time.
Our Deacon Tom O'Toole gave an inspiring talk on "Sacramental Praxis in a Pandemic."
Deacon Stephen Robinson gave us a great talk on "In the Fullness of Time, The Real Meaning of Christmas" and all the hope that our Catholic faith gives us at Christmas, and that hope is faith extended forward in time.
Fr. Cristino gave us an inspiring talk about Advent and the process the Church goes through before canonizing a saint.
We also watched this short video on Advent in 2 Minutes.
Fr. Arjay told us his personal story of how he became a priest. It was an inspiring talk.
We also launched our 2020 Advent Bible Prayer Challenge. Click here for the 2020 Advent Bible Prayer Challenge - Check List.
Bishop William McGrattan gave us a great talk on "Rejoice and Be Glad, On the Call to Holiness in Today's World," a summary of the Holy Father’s Apostolic Exhortation on the call to holiness. Here's the PDF with his power point slides.
Fr. Jonathan did a great presentation on "How to Pray." He showed us some of the Biblical basis of prayer, the main types of prayer, and he explained Lectio Divina. His hand out is here: Lectio Divina Handout.
Then Jim went over Fr. Mario's basic step-by-step guide on how to do daily prayer. His hand out is here: How to Do Daily Prayer, Step-by-Step.
Fr. John Wright showed us how incredibly connected the Old Testament and the New Testament are, and that God has been working throughout history to bring about our salvation.
Fr. Jonathan did another great Bible study with us on Philippians 4, the final chapter of the "Letter of Joy."
Fr. Cristino gave us a very interesting talk on "What is the Church an Expert In?" including humanity, what an expert is, and that an expert helps you to become an expert.
Fr. Jonathan did a great Bible study with us on Philippians 3, the "Letter of Joy."
Deacon Stephen Robinson gave a great talk on "We are called to be in relationship to God and others. It's in our DNA. How does our Catholic culture influence our relationships?"
Fr. John Wright gave a great talk on how, in this very chaotic world, we find enormous joy, which is much better than happiness, in finding out what God wants us to do, and doing it. God says, "Do not be afraid." Read the Bible and find out what Jesus wants you to do, and do it, and you will have great joy!
We had a workshop on Discerning Your Purpose, that gave everyone an opportunity to work on discerning their life purpose. It was beautiful.
We also had a challenging and fun Bible Quiz game at the beginning of our meeting.
Fr. Louis Madey, from the SS. Cyril & Methodius Seminary in Michigan, U.S.A., did an awesome and loving talk introducing the Ten Commandments.
Fr. Jonathan did a great Bible study with us on Philippians 2.
And of course we did some other fun things, as usual!
Fr. Cristino spoke to us on vocation, on what is your true purpose in life. He showed us the philosophical proof that God loves each of us and that God created us each with a purpose or purposes in mind.
Fr. Jonathan did a Bible study with us on Philippians 1.
Fr. John Wright spoke to us on Hope. He showed us how hope is infused into the Bible in to both the Old Testament and the New Testament, and how this affects us today.
Fr. Jonathan spoke on "Living our lives from the Mount when we feel way down in the Valley." Here are Fr. Jonathan's notes from the meeting.
And here is the link to the God Squad webpage with Fr. Jonathan's talk on the four levels of happiness.
And here is the link to the website with the list of Masses that are Streamed all over the world, at different times. The times are in our local time (check the clock in the upper right area to verify it is our time zone).
This meeting was cancelled due to the COVID-19 situation.
Fr. Jonathan gave a great talk on Forgiveness and the
Sacrament of Reconciliation. Here is the document he gave us:
Examination of Conscience - 7 Deadly Sins.pdf
And here's a link to the humorous video we watched: Crisis at the Confessional.
The movie we watched was San Paolo, from the formed.org website. If
you want to watch the movie, ask us and we will tell you how to access
it (for free).
Fr. Jonathan introduced the Bible, Part 1 (Part 2 coming soon). We will be posting notes from this talk.
Here are the videos from the presentation:
Here are the two videos from the presentation:
This is quite a big presentation, with a lot of
details. If you missed the meeting, you should go through this
presentation. It's really worth it. The main presentation was "Why would
an all-loving God allow Suffering?" from Fr. Robert Spitzer's website.
This link goes directly to the presentation:
As with our previous meeting, there are 3 guides on the webpage for this presentation (which is Presentation 19). Here are the links to them:
2. Little Book - Volume 19 (43 pages).
3. Big Book - Volume 19 (119 pages).
We also watched a video clip of Bishop Robert Barron,
on "Religion and Happiness." If you want to see it again, it is here:
On a different topic, here's a good article, by Fr. Michael Cummins, on the Word on Fire site:
Dear Young Adults: 6 Reasons Why You Need the Church
This was a very powerful presentation. If you missed
the meeting, you should go through this presentation. It's really worth
it. The main presentation was "True Happiness" from Fr. Robert Spitzer's
website. This link goes directly to the presentation:
There are three other documents that go with this presentation.
1. Presentation Guide 13 has copies of the slides, the Personal Reflection handout, and a few other details. The double sided handout we gave out at the meeting, is on page 19 and 20 of this PDF. Or you can click here to get a PDF of just the double sided handout.
2. There is also a PDF called "Credible Catholic, Little Book - Volume 13, Four Levels of Happiness." This book is 47 pages, and it has lots of details about the topic, and detailed instructions on how to change yourself to have more happiness. The single page handout we gave out at the meeting, is from page 12 of this PDF, and the multipage handout from Fr. Jonathan is from pages 17 to 29 of this PDF. Or click here to get a PDF of just the single page handout, or click here to get the multipage handout.
3. There is also another PDF, called "Credible Catholic, Big Book - Volume 13, Four Levels of Happiness." This book is 80 pages. It covers the same material as the Little Book, but in more depth.
If you want to really apply the lessons from this presentation, get the Little Book or the Big Book and work thought it. If you find yourself getting confused or stressed out while working on this, contact Fr. Jonathan and make an appointment to discuss it with him.
The main presentation was "Why be Catholic?" from Fr.
Robert Spitzer's website. This link goes directly to the presentation:
We also watched a video clip of Bishop Robert Barron, called "Called by God: Bishop Barron in Washington, DC." If you want to see it again, it is here:
The main presentation was "Proof of Jesus’
Resurrection and Divinity" from Fr. Robert Spitzer's website. This link
goes directly to the presentation:
In the large group debriefing, after the small groups, we also discussed some ideas, which are presented by Peter Kreeft (among others) in this excellent article, The Divinity of Jesus Christ:
There are also a number of excellent articles on Peter Kreeft's website.
The main presentation was "Evidence of God's
Existence from Philosophy" from Fr. Robert Spitzer's website. This link
goes directly to the presentation:
We also had a sneak preview of Emily Wilson, who was speaking at One Rock this year, called 30 Non-Relgiouis Reasons for Not Having Sex Before Marriage.
The main presentation was "Medical Evidence of a
Soul" from Fr. Robert Spitzer's website. This link goes directly to the
We also had a sneak preview of Ken Yasinski, who was speaking at One Rock this year, called How to Get Motivated (Quickly).
The main presentation was "Scientific Evidence of
God's Existence" from Fr. Robert Spitzer's website. This link goes
directly to the presentation:
If you have any more questions on any of the presentations, or the discussion at a meeting, or any other questions about the Catholic Faith, or about life, or any difficulties you are having in your life, please ask your questions.
You can ask your questions in the group at our meetings, you can write your question down and put it in the Question Box at our meetings and this can be anonymous (Fr. Jonathan will answer your question to the group at a meeting), or you can ask me, Fr. Jonathan, directly. I would be happy help you with any questions you have.
Brilliant theologians have been studying the questions of life for many centuries. This may be hard to believe, but it is extremely unlikely that your question or a variation of it, hasn't already been studied intensely. If I don't already know how to answer your question, I can get the answers from our great experts in the Catholic Church.