4-1. Next Steps on our Journey
At the request of Pope Francis, we started our Synodal Journey in Advent with an appreciation of our Parish Community as a people of prayer and purpose. We also had the benefit of the 10 Questions raised by the Archbishop in his Advent letter to us. (Click SYNOD1 to access Parish profile and SYNOD2 for the 10 Questions.)
We continue our journey together in the New Year by highlighting three elements of parish life before we turn our attention to the Universal Church. In other words, we start from home before venturing further afield.
As an essential part of our Synod preparations, we have been asked to share our views with each other and the diocese only after prayer, reflection and discernment.
To help us heed this essential advice we have for our constant reference a handbook entitled Vade Mecum prepared by the Holy See. It encourages us to listen to each other and to discern the will of the Holy Spirit for the Church in the Modern World and our Communion and Participation in it. (See SYNOD3 for full text of Vade Mecum.)
Accordingly, please read it as a prelude to offering your comments if you wish to do so.
We are aware that some parishioners would prefer to hear and express views in an open forum. So, Therese Warwick will arrange for meetings in the Parish Rooms, subject to COVID requirements. While open to all, they are important opportunities for those not on email to have their say. It is also an excellent idea to gather in small groups, as some are already doing.
Our Church in the Community
Just as there are, among others, both contemplative and missionary orders in the Church so our Parish is a community of prayer, listening to the Word of God and reflecting on it and it is a community charged with actively living our Christian life by what we say and do.
At the end of Mass, we are told to “Go” thus firmly placing on us, each in our own way, an obligation not just to go away and do nothing but to live out our Christian calling in our own way. There are many opportunities to bring a Christian perspective to our daily lives in our contacts with family, friends, neighbours, as well as in our studies, careers and in retirement.
As a Parish, in normal non-COVID times, we have historically been, and currently are, active providing support for each other and to wider society as evident from what follows in the attached document, 4-2: Church in the Community (also accessible on the website by clinking on the link SYNOD4-2). It is only indicative of the good work of our Parish Priest and parishioners and does not purport to be definitive. After all, good works are often known only by those involved.
The need for help in our community is great and so are the opportunities for us to do more. As one parishioner rightly said:
“We must each offer to help in accordance with our abilities, great or small”.
Your comments are welcome by email or in the “Synod” basket at the back of the church.
Sean Dunne, Parish Delegate to the Diocese, firstname.lastname@example.org