Go to Joseph!

Go to Joseph!

Go to Joseph!

What is my duty as a Catholic Christian man? That question has been on my mind for several months as we navigate this pandemic. I want to do God’s will in this situation and lead my family to Heaven, which is the end goal. If you read posts online, there is so much division about the Government’s approach to deal with rising Covid numbers. There is also division within our Church community on the approaches taken by our Bishops and priests to try and keep our churches open. I know that I have struggled with many of the decisions made by the above mentioned; the hardest one was not
being able to host my daughter and grandchildren for Christmas. Even harder is not being able to visit our newest Grandson born early December in Idaho Falls, due to the border closure!

One of the bright spots has been The Bible in A Year with Fr. Mike Schmitz, which has helped us realize that God works within the mess of life. When I contemplate the question what is my duty, Fr. Mike reads to us from Genesis 41:55 ‘When all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried to Pharaoh for bread; and Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians, “Go to Joseph; what he says to you, do.”’ I choose to go to Joseph.

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God Squad has made the decision to make our 24th annual conference a virtual one due to the trends at this time. The theme for this year’s conference is St. Joseph: Sanctifier of the hidden life! St. Joseph can help us understand that it is not our accomplishments in the world that define who we are but like Day 2 of the novena that we do every year says: O God, you love your people and bless the ordinary lives we quietly live. As you blessed St. Joseph, bless what I do, however hidden and simple it may be, and let all I do be done with love. Leading up to the conference, we would like to encourage Consecration to St. Joseph starting on February 15th and finish on March 19th . This will aid our journey to discover God’s will in these difficult times.

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We are looking to spread across Canada by making a truly Canadian conference with speakers from across the country: Bishop Scott McCaig, Andre Regnier, Jake Khym, and our own MC Fr. Cristino! Please look for information and registration on: https://godsquad.ca/ and please invite friends and family from across our nation as we attempt to honour the patron saint of Canada, St. Joseph!

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~Sean Lynn

2020 Christmas Message

2020 Christmas Message

2020 has been quite the year!

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One of my earliest memories of the year was when I realized how blessed I am to have a group of men to turn to for prayer and support. I lost two young men that I had worked with for years; one to a drug overdose on Christmas Eve whom I visited in the hospital before he passed. The other had been shot and I was planning on visiting him in the hospital only to hear on the news as I drove into work that he had passed, and it was too late. We were busy planning our 23rd Annual Conference and within seven days we went from planning a physical conference to creating a virtual conference; thanks to the intercession of St Joseph and the great team of guys that are part of God Squad. I’m sure, like many of you, it was very difficult not being able to go to Mass and being able to visit with fellow parishioners. It was hard to park the barbecue trailer and figure out what God wanted us to do. It was during this time as I was working from home and had to make it a more comfortable setting and our daughter was turning 18-years-old so we decided to finish our basement in a Pub theme that we had envisioned years earlier. Now our daughter was able to go to a pub for her 18th birthday in our basement.

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My son, who lives in Idaho, had suggested that I do a podcast which surprised me because it wasn’t something I had considered before. Since I had a new pub, I came up with the concept of, “A Dram With Friends, where we talk about faith, family, food, and fun”. To date, I have interviewed and shared a dram with 20 different guests, including two bishops, one priest, one deacon, one seminarian, and many other outstanding people of God. Around this time, I was also asked to be a Regional Director for the Catholic Men’s Leadership Alliance (CMLA) with the small task of finding Catholic leaders in every diocese in Canada. It was a short time later that I was invited to be on the Board of Directors with the CMLA. So much for a quiet summer of not doing any barbecues. Things didn’t stop there. Inspired by doing the Consecration to St. Joseph earlier in the year, I was visiting the new shrine in Canmore on the way out to BC, I had the inspiration to put the Litany of St. Joseph into song for the ages. After talking to the team and Carlos Foggin (2020 Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Emerging Artist Award), the team felt this was a worthy cause to pursue. We are trusting through the intercession of St. Brother Andre that this will come to fruition as a gift to the whole church.

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We had to cancel our annual motorcycle evangelization road trip 2020, but that did not stop me from riding several thousand kilometers, including some with our good friend Father Mariusz. Richard Beaulieu, a God Squad team member, bought a motorcycle and was given a God Squad patch to ride with us. The mission of evangelization has continued through the pandemic as we facilitated two group studies called,”Activated Disciple,” and, “The Search,” which were very well received in our zoom meetings. CMLA also launched Heroicmen.com as a great resource for men seeking a closer walk with God which offers inspiration to grow in faith and integrity.

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We are planning a major fundraiser for January 16th entitled, A Dram for St Joseph in hopes to raise the necessary funds to complete the project we have envisioned. We did not expect that Pope Francis would assist by declaring “A year of St. Joseph!” I know 2020 has been an extremely difficult year and some are struggling in many ways including financially, spiritually and mentally. With the government of Alberta announcing the new restrictions at the beginning of December caused me no little amount of frustration and sadness because we had plans to have our daughter and grandkids come and visit for Christmas. Being a Police Officer, I was trying to figure out a way around it. I was praying before Mass on the third Sunday of Advent and was given the thought that Jesus Mary and Joseph spent many Christmases in isolation during their time in Egypt, away from all that was familiar to them, including their family. I understood that I should use this opportunity to offer it up for the conversion of Souls and embrace what we have been given and blessed with. Please know that we are praying for you and your families as we walk together through these difficult times.

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I have to thank many of you who have been generous donors this year to keep God Squad going. Normally we do BBQ Outreach which is able to help us pay for many of the costs associated with running the charity. I also have to thank our dedicated God Squad team, Jonathan Gibson, Deacon Stephen Robinson, Richard Beaulieu, Lorand Szoka, Stephen Cross, Joey Paul, John Paul, and Stephen Kiap, for all they do to support the mission. I would like to especially thank Tim O’Connor for his countless years of service as a director!

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I do not know what 2021 will look like but I am excited given that it is a year of Saint Joseph, who has always been part of the God Squad team. He has looked after us and provided for us and I am so excited to partake in a year in honouring him. Our 24th Annual Conference is looking like it might be a virtual one, but it may be an opportunity for us to extend across Canada due to our new partnership with the CMLA (we will figure out a way to get you your Spolumbos). We will continue to do what is needed to continue our mission to men; encouraging them, praying for them, and reaching them wherever they are.

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“Finally be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might put on the whole armour of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil …… therefore take the armour of God that you may be able to withstand the evil day.” (Ephesians 6:10-13)

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“For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven on Earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with the might through his Spirit in the Inner man, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you being rooted and grounded in love, may have the power to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.  Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to do far more abundantly than all we ask or think, to him be glory in the Church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen” (Ephesians 3:14-21)

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May you and your family have a blessed and Merry Christmas!

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~Sean Lynn

We are still on a Mission!

We are still on a Mission!

For it is the God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

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But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, to show that the transcendent power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;  always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. For while we live we are always being given up to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So death is at work in us, but life in you. 2 Corinthians 4:6-12


It seems dark out there as we continue to deal with COVID-19 and what it is doing to our churches. Politicians at every level in our world spread fear of the opposition’s point of view. Many of you know that I am a Caucasian, Christian, Catholic, and a Cop — which, if you listen to the world, I am the evil one incarnate. This is the world view, and if we continue to listen to the secular and social media, we would spiral down into despair, wondering if anything we’re doing is making any difference.

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We still have the mission as men of God to be a light in the darkness of this world. When you call the Police needing help, you don’t care what stands in their way to get to you. We have a mission to complete, and need to adjust our tactics to complete it. A good example of this is my local Knights of Columbus Don Bosco Council #8146 where they had to cancel the Men’s Night Out (their major fundraiser), but knew the charities they support were still in need of funding support, now, more than ever. The KofC Council shifted its focus and created a Men’s Night In Virtual Event which included a whisky tasting; the tasting was very well received and as a result, the Knights were able to raise the much needed funds to support the charities in need. This is just an example of how resiliency in faith can and does make a difference to the lives of those we reach out to. We can all do even little things in our everyday lives to evangelize those around us. A kind gesture, an encouraging word, or just a smile can make a difference for a person who may be floundering.

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Evangelization is alive and well.  Here are just some of the tools that we can employ to reach out to people who may feel isolated from their community: 

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  • Catholic Men’s Leadership Alliance has launched heroicmen.com as well as the app which has great studies that are all virtual and is free to use. It is a tool that you can use to encourage yourself and other men. I know we can’t meet in the churches but we can still share our faith with others and we must!
  • I am starting the Consecration to St Joseph again, as it is a great tool. I have been reading scripture every morning after being challenged by The Activated Disciple study (Jeff Cavins).
  • I am using my whisky collection to try to reach out and encourage men with A Dram With Friends on heroicmen.com and YouTube
  • There is a summit coming up on November 21, 2020 at 10 am MST called the Catholic Fatherhood Summit that I would encourage you to invite a friend or two to join you. 

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God Squad has a couple of dates coming up that we would like you to save. First is January 16th, 2021, we are hoping to host a virtual whisky tasting fundraiser to raise funds and awareness for our St Joseph Litany project. If you have items to donate for our virtual silent auction please contact us at adram@godsquad.ca.

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Secondly, please save March 19th & 20th, 2021 for our 24th annual men’s conference which we are not sure how it will look at this time but will proceed to bring it to you!

~Sean Lynn


Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labour is not in vain . 1 Corinthians 15:58

St. Joseph Litany Project

St. Joseph Litany Project

Invitation to the Litany to St. Joseph Project

As many of you know, some of the most treasured hymns and prayers set to music in the Church are written by some of the most famous composers, such as The Mass in B minor by Bach, Handel’s Messiah, Requiem by Mozart, etc. These masterpieces were written for the centuries and are timeless. This is our goal with the Litany of St. Joseph; for people to recognize the beauty and full richness of the prayer. The God Squad Canada Core Team has felt a call to set the Litany of St. Joseph to song to share with the church. God Squad has always held St. Joseph in the highest esteem as our patron in our ministry to men in the Church. We wish to honour him through this effort.

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The vision is to have the Litany set to music by Carlos Foggin (2020 Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Emerging Artist Award, in 2019 was named by the Calgary Herald as a “Compelling Calgarian” for his work in community building, education, and outreach and was inducted as a Fellow of the Royal Canadian College of Organists) and recorded at Shrine Church of Our Lady of the Rockies in Canmore. We are working with Father Cristino and the seminarians as possible vocalists who will perform with the Rocky Mountain Symphony. This endeavour will include a video of the litany to share with the world and a 70 minute concert at the Shrine by the Rocky Mountain Symphony.

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We need to raise funds to complete this gift to our church. It will cost at least $35,000.00 to complete to the level we believe will give honour to St. Joseph, Patron Saint of Canada. All donations and prayers will assist us in reaching our goal. Donations are tax deductible and for anyone able to contribute a major donation, and would like to be recognized, we have created the following categories:

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  • $25 – $250  –  Zealous Defender of Christ – Recognition on the video.
  • $251 – $999  –  Pillar of Families – Recognition on the video and will be given early access to be able to purchase tickets for the concert.
  • $1000 – $2499  –  Patron of a Happy Death – Named on the commissioning of the music, recognized on the video, plus 2 tickets to the concert and a meet and greet.
  • $2500 – $4999  –  Terror of Demons – Named on the commissioning of the music, recognized on the video plus 4 tickets to the concert and a meet and greet.
  • $5000+  –  Protector of the Holy Church – Named on the commissioning of the music, recognized on the video plus 6 tickets seated with the God Squad team or dignitaries to the concert, plus a meet and greet and a picture with the symphony.

God Squad would like to have commitments for 60% of the funding after our A Dram for Saint Joseph Fundraiser on January 16, 2021, with the aim of having the funding completed in time for the Annual God Squad Men’ Conference in March of 2021.


Please DONATE to the St. Joseph Litany Project

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Or send your donations via e-transfer to:  donations@godsquad.ca


Please pray for this project.

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 PRAYER TO OBTAIN A SPECIAL FAVOUR THROUGH THE INTERCESSION OF SAINT BROTHER ANDRÉ.

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Saint Brother André, we celebrate your presence among us.

Your loving friendship with Jesus, Mary and Joseph

makes you a powerful intercessor with God, our Father.

Compassion carries your words straight to God’s heart,

and your prayers are answered with comfort and healing.

Through you, from our lips to God’s ear, our supplications are heard…

that you help us secure the funds to honour St. Joseph in this endeavour.

We ask to be made a part of God’s work, alongside you,

in a spirit of prayer, compassion and humility.

 Saint Brother André, pray for us.

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Amen

Catholic Men’s Leadership Alliance – 3rd Annual Summit

Catholic Men’s Leadership Alliance – 3rd Annual Summit

2020 CMLA Virtual Summit


You are invited to participate in the 2020 Catholic Men’s Leadership Alliance Virtual Summit featuring Dr. Tim Gray, Fr. Larry Richards, Matthew Kelly, Fr. Rick Heilman and Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers.  The Virtual Summit will be streamed for free on June 27th from 8:00am-3:00pm (CST).  This year’s theme is Knowing and Living the Post Covid-19 New Normal.  CMLA’s Virtual Summit will be a powerful day for reflection and action.

The format for the CMLA Virtual Summit is ideal for group and individual participation.  We will begin with Mass, celebrated by Archbishop Gregory Aymond of New Orleans, and then dive deeply into relevant, thought-provoking conversations such as Being the Church of the Future Today, and The Stakes are Higher and Opportunities Greater.  The CMLA Virtual Summit will feature engaging presentations from leaders across the US, round table discussions between clergy and lay leaders, small group discussion, and session summaries.  Afternoon sessions include Building and Nurturing the New Catholic Family, and Together in Battle: Spiritual Battle Workshop.  We will close out the summit by sharing relevant resources, followed by a call to action from Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers.

We anticipate many individuals and communities of men will participate in the 2020 CMLA Virtual Summit.  We hope that we can count you among them. Click here to register.

 

https://youtu.be/POReNgexSOc

Celebrating the New Year

Celebrating the New Year

“It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things which have now been announced to you by those who preached the good news to you through the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look.” 1 Peter 1:12


I am late with my Christmas message so I will focus on celebrating the new year. 2019 was a very busy year for God Squad. We had an awesome conference and made a new friend, Bishop Scott McCaig, the Canadian Military Ordinariate. The barbecue season was extremely busy, going almost every weekend in May and June, and then again in September and October.  We were able to support several Stampede breakfasts and Fr Troy’s first Mass BBQ. We undertook a new challenge by organizing and painting St. Henry’s church in Southern Alberta. This was very much appreciated by the community and Bishop McGrattan. Our evangelization motorcycle tour took us all the way to Montreal and Ottawa and back. We were able to visit St Joseph’s oratory (our patron saint) then visited the Canadian Martyrs shrine (Jeff thinks they are the North American Martyrs), which was extremely moving for all. it was great to be there as Jeff Cavins experienced it for the first time and appeared to be very moved and to hear Bishop Scott preach the martyrdom of St John De Brebeuf.

 

A rest was needed which led to the reason why a Christmas newsletter wasn’t sent out.  A brand new year brings new hope and optimism. We are excited to host our 23rd annual conference coming up March 20th & 21st. For the Saskatchewan fans out there we have keynote speaker, John Chick, CFL defensive superstar. We are also blessed to have Jane Adolphe, law professor from Ave Maria University and international law expert for the Vatican where she has worked for the last 8 years. I would imagine the barbecue season will be busy once again as the requests are already starting to come in. This past weekend we did a charity gala, roasting a whole pig in -27 degree weather. We are excited to promote a new book by Fr Donald Calloway called Consecration to St Joseph. Our host parish, St. Peters, will be running the 33-day consecration prayers culminating on March 19th.  These books will be available on our website leading up to the conference if you would like to obtain a copy for yourself.

 

The God Squad would like to wish you and your family all the blessings in the new year and that you follow God’s will as you tackle everyday living, Faithfully, fruitfully and loving your family and your community.

Sean Lynn

 

God Squad 2019 Motorcycle Ride

God Squad 2019 Motorcycle Ride

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart, 510 East First Street, Alkeny, IA

Dinner at 5 p.m., with talk by Jeff Cavins at 6:30 p.m.

 

Monday, August 5, 2019

Holy Family Catholic Church, 56405 Mayflower Road, South Bend, IN

Mass at 6 p.m. followed by Talk by Jeff Cavins

 

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Merciful Redeemer Catholic Church, 2775 Erin Centre Blvd, Mississauga, ON

Mass at 7 p.m. followed by Talk by Jeff Cavins