I am 7th in the family of 11 brothers and sisters, born on May 6th, 1976 in a village (Punjab, Pakistan)of over 20 thousand people with only 20 Christian families. My parents are still enjoying the earthly life by the grace of God. As a kid I have studied in boarding hostels up to grade 10. After that, I joined St. Thomas the Apostle minor seminary, Faisalabad in 1992(known for textile industry) for 4 years. I completed my philosophy studies from St. Francis Xavier major seminary, Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan for 3 years. I then was sent to Christ the King major seminary, Karachi, Sindh (which is on Arabian Sea) to study Theology for 4 years. In 2004 I completed my seminary formation for 11 years however while I was in the final year of my theological studies my bishop (who is Cardinal now) gave me to the new diocese which is in the South of Pakistan (Balochistan). I was ordained to the priesthood on December 10th, 2004. I was interested in being a missionary to learn about other cultures, I requested to leave the diocese and with the help of an Oblate Priest (OMI) who has worked in the Diocese of Calgary with the native communities, I landed in Canada August 2011. I worked for one year in Holy Spirit Parish, Calgary, 1 yr. in the NWT to help the Diocese of McKenzie-Fort Smith. And back to Calgary, St. Michael’s Catholic Community for 3 yrs. and then to St. Albert the Great Parish, to serve for 2 yrs. And now Holy Family Parish, my 5th move in 7 years. I believe in the saying of Jesus “say we are unworthy servants and we only did what we were supposed to do” and that has strengthened me in priesthood to do any and everything with commitment and sincerity of heart.
God has blessed me with many gifts such as photography, cooking, calligraphy, painting, sewing, needlework and many others. Lastly English is my 6th Language.
I would love to work together to make Holy Family Parish a family of love, care and support remembering the words of St. Paul “ But we have this treasure in the clay jars, so that it may be made clear that this extraordinary power belongs to God and does not come from us” (2 Corinthians 4:7)
Blessings… Fr. Iqbal
It is a joy to introduce myself as Naveed Arif and my Baptismal name is ‘John the Baptist’. I was born in a very traditional Roman Catholic family in Khushpur (Catholic Village-Faisalabad, Pakistan) and I was Ordained as a Roman Catholic Priest by Cardinal Joseph Coutts for Dominican Province of Son of Mary Pakistan on 11 November 2010. As a religious, I have taken the vows of Poverty, Chastity and Obedience.
My father, Walter Saleem (RIP) went to the Lord and my mother ‘Victoria Mukhtar’ is still living. We are five brothers and two sisters; I am the eldest among them. It was a privilege for me to be formed and educated in the best possible educational institutes. I finished my STL from Angelicum (Rome) in 2015. In Rome, I was privileged to live and work in General Curia of Dominican Order and Vatican in Rome (Italy). I have served the ‘people of God’ in Pakistan, Italy, Ireland, England and some other parts of the world, with dedicated and faithful heart. I had an opportunity to work as a Vocation Director, Justice and peace, community syndic (responsible for finances). Teaching and preaching are ‘charism of Dominicans’ and so is mine. For the fulfillment of this mission, I have been serving the poor, needy, mentally challenged, seniors, street children, orphanages, choirs, people of all ages, regional, cultural and social groups, Interfaith dialogue, Inter-religious Dialogue, ecumenical dialogue, Justice and Peace commission Pakistan, hospital and Jail Chaplain.
“Laudare, Benedecre, Predicare”, To priase, To bless and To preach is my ‘hobby’, my goal and centre of my life. I have been preaching retreats, giving recollections and seminars on theological topics. I have taught dogmatic theology at National Catholic Institutes of theology and have delivered other papers in different parts of the world.
Currently, I am the Associate Pastor of Ascension Parish, Calgary. It is a joy to be here and serve the people of God. Our Lord Jesus Christ is the only influencer in my life. My favorite quote is manifesto of Christ the Savior. In general, Sacred Scripture is my favorite book/verse. In particular, I like “…..The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me, to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” (Lk 4:18-19). I would say to all of you: ‘keep the faith and share it’. If you want to know more about me, please ‘invite me for dinner’ (LOL) or ‘Come and see’ (Jn 1:39). Blessings and peace.
I have been serving the Catholic community of Medicine Hat in various ministries for the last 27 years – 17 of those as a Permanent Deacon. Presently my parish ministries consist of baptismal preparation, (pastoral care) ministry to the aged, funeral ministry, men’s ministry (TMIY), and preaching. Outside of the parish I am serving as a trustee for the Medicine Hat Catholic Board of Education and have been employed with Good Year in Medicine Hat for over 34 years. My wife Helena and I have been married since 1990 and have four children; Amelia, Derrick, Isaac, Isabella and one Grandchild Olivia. I enjoy spending time with family and friends, serving the people of God, reading, woodworking and spending time outdoors.