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Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Tomorrow the sixth Synod of the Archdiocese of Wellington will begin. Previous Synods were held in 1876, 1888, 1988, 1998, and 2006. Actually the Synod has already begun; it began when I convoked the Synod on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception last December. Much preparatory work has gone on over the intervening months; I thank you all sincerely for that, and especially the Synod Steering Committee. However an enormous part of the work has been done by you, laity, religious and clergy of the Archdiocese. In May there were two major gatherings, one in the South Island part of the diocese and one in the North Island. Then in May, June and July several hundred people participated in the consultation phase of the synod. This meant people gathering together, listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit, listening to others, and praying and discerning before responses were sent in an analysed in preparation for this week-end. The process of discernment has been appreciated by many people and I have been told by them that they have begun to use this prayerful discernment process in various meetings and gatherings. The same process will be used over this Synod weekend.
Almost two years ago Pope Francis said “it is precisely this path of Synodality which God expects of this Church of the third millennium.” Please pray that all participants at the Synod this weekend will enter the weekend with the intention of “journeying together.”
At the second session of the Synod on the Family (October 2015), which I was privileged to be at, the Holy Father said “The world in which we live, and which we are called to love and serve, even with its contradictions, demands that the Church strengthen cooperation in all areas of her mission.” I therefore ask for your prayers again. As you know this Synod is about being “Sent Out” on mission, reminding all the baptised that we have a task to do, the task is to take Christ and His Gospel into the world around us. What I therefore ask of all the readers of this newsletter is that you pray that we find a way to ensure “that the Church strengthen cooperation in all areas of her mission.” The formal part of the Synod begins tomorrow, the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows. We entrust the work of the Synod therefore to Mary who was given to us as
“As a Church which journeys together with men and wom-en, sharing the travails of history, let us cherish the dream that a rediscovery of the inviolable dignity of peoples and of the function of authority as service will also be able to help civil society to be built up in justice and fraternity, and thus bring about a more beautiful and humane world for coming generations. ” Pope Francis
our Mother as Jesus was dying on the cross and said to John and to us “This is your mother.” (John 19:26)
With thanks to you all for the support and prayers for this important event in the life of the Archdiocese. Every blessing.