I spoke with Sister Reine Driscoll of the parish of Saint Augustine yesterday, and confirmed that I’ll be going once again to her small community up north to celebrate Christmas mass. The parish is a small fishing village near Labrador, which can only be accessed by plane or boat. I’ll be leaving December 22 and coming back December 28 (the only flight times available).
The last time I went I found my stay to be a wonderful chance to reconnect with meat-and-potatoes ministry. The people had not had a priest for months, so it was back to basics: mass; confessions; visits to the sick; a trip across the river to the Indian reserve; and so on. So I am looking forward to it. Yes, I will miss Christmas with my family (or at least it will be delayed a bit), but I called my parents yesterday to speak with them about it and they encouraged me to go. As I told them, I have a hard time saying no for Christmas to a community that only gets the Eucharist every 6 months (or thereabouts).