Sunday afternoon’s live-streamed Opening Mass from Perth with Archbishop Timothy Costelloe presiding, brought much joy, excitement, celebration and a sense of calm to begin this historic event of the First Assembly of the fifth Plenary in the life of the Church in Australia.
Sunday’s liturgy, the Opening address and the first day’s proceedings have inspired members’ hearts and minds to speak boldly, listen humbly and discern together about the future of the Catholic Church in Australia.
The first day of the Assembly presented the formalities and necessary stages and procedures of the Assembly followed by members voicing and reaffirming important matters and issues raised at local levels which needed to be put forward and to the attention of the Plenary.
Prayerful discernment within the spiritual conversation process is central to the Plenary process.
Time is set aside to allow the Holy Spirit to work within us, of which I am truly grateful. Participants have been grouped according to a preferred agenda topic and then have the opportunity in a smaller sized group setting to discern and engage in dialogue on the agenda question for discernment.
Being part of such a diverse group of faith-filled people is certainly a privilege; to be listening and learning from them is a gift. The fruits of our prayer will strengthen our response to the question - What is God asking of us in Australia at this time? Our journey continues ….
Photo: Cross given to Diocesan Plenary members to have with them for prayer during the Plenary Council, gifted by Bishop Greg.