Sunday, February 4, 2024

Glory be to Jesus Christ!

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Time is flying by so quickly!  There was a very short period of time between the announcement that I would become Bishop of the Saskatoon Eparchy and the actual celebrations.  Great Lent is right around the corner in one week, and Easter will be so early this year.

When we feel like life is getting away from us, it is important for us to stop and reflect on all that has happened.  These are a few reflections from me as I take a few moments to breathe.

For me, it is a great grace to be home in Saskatchewan as bishop.  I was enjoying my work in Toronto as Provincial Superior for all the Redemptorists in Canada, but God had different plans for me, a plan which included the great people of Saskatchewan.

I am so grateful for all the support I have received thus far.  The staff at the Bishop’s Chancery office in Saskatoon has been incredible in the work in the lead up to my consecration and now they are hard back at work to serve the people of the Eparchy.  So many people came to or watched online the celebrations during my consecration weekend – I heard there were even viewing parties.

I want to take this opportunity to thank the individuals, families, parishes, communities, and organizations for their generous gifts to me at my consecration.  I am overwhelmed with gratitude.  I only left Saskatchewan just over a year ago, but now I am beginning a new life here, a life for the long haul as your bishop, and it takes a lot to set up a new life now that I no longer live with my Redemptorist confreres in community.

Now, it is time to move forward.  Let us move forward together in a spirit of listening, openness, and learning.  Our Eparchy, from one corner of the Province to the other, is filled with people of good will, prayerful people, and talented people; let us come together as one in the Eparchy of Saskatoon to help build God’s kingdom on earth – a kingdom of love, a kingdom of peace, and a kingdom of understanding.

Bishop Michael Smolinski, C.Ss.R.