Catholic Register Staff

Catholic Register Staff

Church leaders from Canada, Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America will gather in Toronto for an ecumenical conference on mining from May 1-3.

Hosted by KAIROS and several of its member institutions in partnership with Norwegian Church Aid, they will be joined by indigenous partners, social partners from the Global South, Church members and agency staff.

The gathering is meant to develop alliances between leaders from the North and South in an effort to achieve mining justice around the world.
Canada goes to the polls on May 2ndWith so many promises being made in the lead-up to the May 2 election, it can be easy to lose track of the issues that matter.

Here are the promises the Liberals, Conservatives and NDP are making to young people, straight from their party platforms.

The Liberal Party


- To encourage youth getting hired, a Youth Hiring Incentive will give small and medium-sized businesses a full rebate on Employment Insurance premiums for every Canadian youth — between the ages of 18 and 25 — hired.

- Addressing the costs of post-secondary education, the Canadian Learning Passport will provide $1,000 a year (or $1,500 a year for low-income families) over four years for every high school student to use towards college or university.

Health Promotion in Schools
- Through the proposed Canadian Health Promotion Strategy, the Liberals will work with the Council of Ministers of Education to set targets for physical activity in schools and encourage education and promotion of healthy foods in primary and elementary schools.

- Initiate a Canadian Services Corps to financially support Canadian youth wishing to do volunteer service abroad.  
- The Canada Service Corps will forgive $1,500 in student loan debt for young Canadians who donate at least 150 hours of service in a year, in a Canada Service Corps volunteer position, after graduating from post-secondary education.

The Conservative Party


- Extend support for the Canada Youth Business Foundation, which provides loans and mentoring to young entrepreneurs.

- Enhance the Canada Student Loans Program for part-time students to respond to increased demand for assistance in career transition through post-secondary education.
- Double the work exemption for Canada Student Loans to allow students to benefit more from part-time employment.
- 30 industrial research chairs will be established at colleges and polytechnics so students can interact with innovative researchers.

Youth Crime
- Propose to make permanent its Youth Gang Prevention Fund to help at-risk youth avoid criminal activity.

New Democratic Party

- The NDP proposes to increase the funding to the Canada Student Grants Program by $200 million a year, targeting accessibility for aboriginals, disabled and low-income students.  
- Make post-secondary education more affordable by directly attacking rising tuition costs with an $800-million transfer to the provinces and territories to lower tuition fees, as per the NDP’s Post-Secondary Education Act.
- Raise the education tax credit from $4,800 per year to $5,760 to help with increasing education costs.

- Re-introduce the federal minimum wage law to set a national standard of earning for those who make the lowest wages in the work force.

To access the party platforms, see

(Compiled by Sarah Gagliano and Vanessa Santilli.)

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Nathan Andrew SirayEditor’s note: this is the final instalment in our series of profiles of the men who will graduate from St. Augustine’s Seminary this spring and be ordained to the priesthood for various dioceses.

Growing up next to the Rocky Mountains in Alberta, Nathan Andrew Siray said there were two choices of what he would do with his life: be a doctor like his dad or a professional snowboarder.

“There was no place for the priesthood in this young boy’s mind,” he said.

But when Siray attended World Youth Day in Paris in 1997, he was inspired by Pope John Paul II to deepen his faith.

“I remember coming home thinking I was going to be a more zealous Christian soul,” said Siray. “But then high school came and I decided, ‘Well, let’s just have fun.’ Religion can wait.”

The winner is... Twelve-year old Agustin Andres Villegas is undecided if he should be an artist or an archeologist when he grows up. Meantime, we sure do dig his drawing.

Villegas’ portrait of the Resurrection is the colourful image we selected to grace the cover of The Register’s 2011 Easter edition.

It was one of 370 entries submitted to the children’s Easter drawing contest conducted by The Register and Joseph’s Inspirational Inc.

Toronto Catholic District School BoardTORONTO - Ann Perron, the Toronto Catholic District School Board’s director of education, announced her retirement on April 14.

During her tenure, Perron’s accomplishments have included the “implementation of a balanced and sustainable multi-year budget plan, a review of school board governance and the initiation of a three-year pastoral plan to ‘Nurture our Catholic Community Through Word, Worship and Witness,’ ” the TCDSB said in a statement.

Perron began her career as a teacher with the board in 1983. She taught in elementary and high schools and also worked as an elementary school principal. She has served as the provincial co-ordinator for the Institute for Catholic Education. From there, she became a superintendent with  the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario.

Perron also served as strategic advisor to the deputy minister of education in 2008. Perron returned to the Toronto board to take on the director of education role in  March 2009.

The board is seeking a new director of education for September.

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King’s University College at the University of Western OntarioLONDON, Ont. - Sauro Camiletti has been appointed the new academic dean at King’s University College at the University of Western Ontario.

Effective July 1, the appointment follows an intense international search and a broad consultative process within the King’s community.

“It is a great privilege to serve as a leader in an academic community that is recognized for the quality of its degree programs, the teaching ability and scholarship of its faculty, its Christian values and the services it provides its students,” said Camiletti.
Hezuk ShroffHezuk Shroff says he has been blessed with not one, but two vocations.

Born in Calcutta, India, in 1971, Shroff was raised in the Zoroastrian religion. When he came to Canada to attend McGill University in Montreal, he discovered the first of those vocations, a conversion to the Catholic faith.

While exploring his faith and the possibility of becoming a religious brother, Shroff was sent to Cebu in the Philippines to do missionary work. It was there he found his second and deeper vocation, a call to the priesthood.

“Father doesn’t have time for us,” said the youth of Cebu, according to Shroff. “Father is too busy running the parish.”
April 15, 2009

Easter Contest 2011

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Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Press the play button in the centre of the slideshow to view. Use the small icon in the bottom right corner of the player to view in full-screen mode.

Ages 6-8 Part 1


Ages 6-8 Part 2


Andrew MacDonald will be ordained a priest for the diocese of Charlottetown this spring. (Photo courtesy of the archdiocese of Toronto)When he was six, Andrew MacDonald blessed himself like a priest following Mass one Sunday. At 31, he is now becoming one.

“The Lord was slowly opening my heart to the reality of the priesthood,” he said.

“I had no idea at the time, but that’s the case.”

God continued to gently lure MacDonald to the priesthood throughout his youth, when he attended a number of retreats in Prince Edward Island, where he was born and raised. Attending public school in a Protestant community, MacDonald was “blown away” by being with so many other passionate Catholics.
Eric Mah’s call was reignited after attending Confession after a 15-year absence. (Photo courtesy of the archdiocese of Toronto)Whenever Eric Mah thought of the priesthood in his Grade 9 year of high school, he felt an “enduring sense of peace and joy and consolation.” But he spent more than a decade ignoring this feeling, however, before choosing to follow it.

While studying law in university, Mah was invited by his friend to a Lenten reconciliation service, where he had his first Confession in 15 years.

“After hearing the words of absolution, I remember feeling this huge weight lifted in my heart,” said Mah.

He was later asked by another friend to visit the seminary


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Charles Lewis: The papal office deserves a defence 

"I believed that criticism of the papacy was a sport for non-Catholics or perhaps disgruntled Catholics who were always at odds with Church teachings. Then a few things happened," Charles Lewis writes.


Pope's homily

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Read the latest homily given by Pope Francis.