Христос воскрес! Воїстину воскрес!
Christ is Risen! Indeed, He is Risen!
April 14, 2018
“Do You Love Me…Feed my Sheep”.
Caring for ALL that God Has Given Us.
Every Shepherd has sheep. This became abundantly clear to me a few days after my ordination as Bishop. My cousins who were living on a farm gifted me with a sheep. It took me back to 1980 when I visited a farm in Scotland for a summer exchange experience where we tended over 400 sheep.
This also gave me an insight into why Jesus chose the image of the Shepherd and Sheep when he wanted to explain the relationship between Christ and all of us who follow Him. The Shepherd, Jesus Christ, is willing to lay down his life for his sheep. In the First letter of John we read, “We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us – and we ought to lay down our lives for one another.” (1Jn3:16)
When Jesus asked Peter, “Do you love me?” and Peter said “Yes”, Jesus Christ said “Feed my sheep!” It appears that this is the ultimate sign for Peter to show his love. In other words, this seems to be a measure or an indication of our love for Jesus. So, I ask myself and I ask all of you, “Are you feeding His sheep?”
The theme of the 2018 Annual Eparchial Appeal is “Do You Love Me…Feed my Sheep”. Caring for ALL that God Has Given Us. In other words, we are called to show our love for Jesus and our gratitude for the many gifts that God has given us. Jesus wants us to use the gifts He has given each of us, together, in a way that says profoundly,
“I do love you Jesus. I am feeding your sheep”.
An overview of the initiatives to be funded by the 2018 Annual Eparchial Appeal include:
- Our Ukrainian Catholic Religious Education Centre continues to reach many of our faithful through the ongoing Adult Faith Formation Programs in Saskatoon, Regina and Yorkton. In addition, “Christ Our Pascha”, the Catechism for the Ukrainian Catholic Church, continues to be made available throughout the Eparchy with the assistance of Hieromonk Gregory Hrynkiw.
- The Human & Environmental Program being delivered throughout the Eparchy by Dr. Lesya Sabada provides our faithful with information about our personal habits of consumption and how this may have impact throughout the world.
- The Family Life Office provides programming touching the lives of our seniors, those with special needs and family members that may need assistance. In addition, the Eparchy has been called upon to provide support to our families in crisis. The Family Life Office can provide spiritual direction in our lives where some agencies may not be able to do so. The marriage preparation program entitled “Crown Them with Honour & Glory” focuses on our Ukrainian Byzantine traditions and spirituality and aids 21st century couples on their journey into marriage.
- We are pleased to offer nine pod casts where reflection is provided for both young and old as we journey through our lives. We can examine our faith in relation to marriage and family life in today’s everchanging society. These are accessible on the Family and Life website, http://skeparchy.org/flo/
- World Youth Day will be held in Panama in 2019! We are supporting our youth as they travel to meet with Pope Francis and participate with other youth from across the world in Christian life and values.
- Two new initiatives from the Youth Ministry are also being undertaken. A new Lenten Project for the Youth is in the developmental stages, as well as a global initiative entitled “Dyven Svit”. The latter project will enable young people throughout the world to strengthen their world Christian community. The Eparchy has been asked to represent the entire UGCC at the Papal Synod being held in Rome, October 2018. The theme will be “Youth, Faith & Vocational Discernment”. It will dialogue with the future leaders of our Church.
- Communication is key for any venture to succeed. The continuing need for an Eparchial News for all people across the Eparchy is a must, and the initiative of Livestreaming our Divine Liturgies and other church services to those that are not able to access the Liturgical Services in their community for a variety of reasons is integral.
- We ask that you consider making a charitable donation to the Bishop Budka Eparchial Stewardship Society Inc. in order to keep our initiatives and programming viable and available to all people within Saskatchewan.
For a full list of initiatives to be funded by the 2017 Annual Eparchial Appeal, please refer to the “2018 Annual Eparchial Appeal Fundraising Goals”.
Your local parish family may have set goals that can be reached in addition to the initiatives listed for this year’s Annual Eparchial Appeal. With your continued support, we can assist and benefit everyone in our Eparchy and within our parishes.
Thank you for your generosity!
Yours in Christ,
+ Bryan Bayda, CSsR
Eparch of Saskatoon