On Friday evening, St. Joseph’s Parish, Paroisse Sacré-Coeur across the street from us and the Christian Reformed Chaplaincy held a bilingual and ecumenical Thanksgiving Dinner for students — many of whom were international or away from home for the holiday weekend. Some of the international students celebrated Thanksgiving for the first time. As organizers, we faced a good problem: we expected 30 people and ended up with over 55. Thankfully, five turkeys did the trick (along with stuffing, mashed potatoes, salads and a range of homemade pastries).
The evening began with a bilingual Mass hosted by Sacré-Coeur Parish and celebrated by Fr. Andrzej Jastrzębsk — an Oblate priest originally from Poland. The music was offered by Sister Marie-Pierre Delorme — who sings and plays a variety of instruments. Participants then walked across Laurier Avenue East to the St. Joe’s Women’s Centre of St. Joseph’s Parish, where we hosted a traditional Thanksgiving Dinner and board games.
The evening was a good example of collaboration between two Oblate parishes in Ottawa, between two languages and across denominational lines.