Lay Pastoral Leadership Training
Lay people are trained as pastoral leaders to lead their community in the celebration of their faith in the absence of a priest.
Lay formation programs ensure that in the absence of a priest, community leaders are qualified to lead liturgies, catechesis and sacramental preparation classes.
Being with God’s People: A Visit to the Beaufort Delta Missions
By Father Steve Morrisey, C.SS.R.
Paulatuk and Tuktoyaktuk are two small communities that border on the Beaufort Sea. They are also two communities filled with God’s grandeur.
Upon arriving at the mission trailer (my home during my stay), I was invited and given a quick tour of the mission office then over to a parishioner couple’s home for a wonderful caribou meal. Pastoral leader Marlene Wolki and her husband Hank showed me incredible hospitality. The caribou meal was followed by a tour of the community.
Saturday afternoon was filled with the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and then evening Mass for the Fourth Sunday of Advent.
Sunday morning began with Mass and then I was blessed to meet more wonderful people as Marlene asked me to bring Communion to a few shut-ins. The day continued with several hours of meeting people who are all full of laughter and joy. It did not take long to go from there to the preparations for Christmas Midnight Mass.
Mass on Christmas Eve saw most of the small community coming together. Christmas Day was met with the morning celebration of the Eucharist and a wonderful turkey meal. Boxing Day saw the entire community gathering for drum dancing, a big feast, and conversations until late in the evening.
The following day was filled more joy and levity. It was then that I had an opportunity to bless the community youth centre and meet a few more who call Paulatuk home.
In Tuktoyaktuk, catechism and faith development classes, baptisms, a very active St. Vincent de Paul Society, and the Sunday Eucharist to celebrate the Holy Family were just a few of the activities that led up to an amazing New Year’s Eve celebration. The days in Tuktoyaktuk saw great celebrations of faith, several baptisms, one celebration of First Reconciliation and First Communion, and many blessings.
Redemptorist Father Steve Morrisey is associate pastor of St. Mary’s parish in the Diocese of Saskatoon and is a member of St. Mary’s parish/Redemptorist Evangelization Team. In addition to his hospital, school and prison ministry, he is also chapter chaplain of the Knights of Columbus in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.