Bohan celebrates opening mass
By Frank Flegel
WEYBURN, Sask. — Teachers and staff in the Holy Family Catholic School
Division gathered at St. Vincent de Paul Parish Sept. 10 for their opening
mass for the school year. It’s an annual event but the difference
this year was the presence of Archbishop Daniel Bohan who presided at the
mass, delivered the homily and after mass delivered a talk on stewardship,
the school district’s theme for this year (see related story).
Schools actually opened doors the week before, said Director of Education Shelley Rowein, but the mass was held on the 10th to accommodate the archbishop’s calendar.
Bohan said in his homily that the authority to make a change, have an
influence in the lives of people, especially students, comes from God.
He quoted St. Matthew’s Gospel in which Christ tells his disciples
to go and make disciples of all nations.
“We are teacher’s here, both you and I,” said the archbishop. “I am the teacher of the faith of the church founded on Jesus, the eternal Wisdom of God made flesh. You are teachers of young people who will build their lives on what you teach them. You want them to have better lives because of you; not only because of what you teach them but because of you.”
He related a story of encountering a young man who was a member of a Venture Scout group Bohan led as pastor in one of his parishes. The young man told him that he had made a difference in his life. What impelled him to have a positive influence on that young man, said Bohan, was his faith in Jesus Christ.
To truly make a difference, however, we must believe and truly live the faith. The greatest threat to Catholic education does not come from outside, he said. “It comes from us when we will not believe.” As he has done in recent homilies and other talks, Bohan referred to the Year of Faith proclaimed by Pope Benedict in which the pope said that faith is choosing to stand with the Lord as to live with him.
“Faith is not simply a list of beliefs,” said the archbishop, “it is the way we live.”
Holy Family Roman Catholic School Division is headquartered in Weyburn but it has five schools in four communities; Weyburn, Estevan, Radville and Wilcox.
The school division has a tradition of presenting Bibles to new teachers and this year following mass, several new teachers were introduced and presented with their Bibles.
It was a special day too for recently ordained Deacon Mau Nugyen who accompanied the archbishop. It was the first time he read the Gospel and the first time he dismissed the congregation at the end of mass.