Category Archives: Cathedral News

Cathedral & Pastoral Area Bulletins & Other Related News.

The Cathedral Connection 9 July 2017

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Dear Parishioners

The other day I found myself in Cuba Street alongside the water buckets. As a child my mother would take us here and we would spend time watching how one bucket would fill up and then flow into the next one and so on. We were fascinated by these buckets. But this time what fascinated me was a sudden realisation that these buckets represented the constant outpouring of God’s great love for us. It never ends. The buckets just kept flowing. Each bucket didn’t fill up and then stop. It kept giving what it was receiving and pouring all it had out to the next bucket.

As this week’s Psalm reminds us: “The Lord is good to all.” But why is it then that it doesn’t always feel like this? We turn on the news. We hear about someone’s suffering or heartbreak. Life slaps us in the face. Where we ask is this goodness, this mercy, this love?

For me I believe it’s in the hearts of each and every one of us. It’s all in us poured into us from the minute we were born. It’s in the little things like when we smile at someone, help someone, take the time to just sit and be with someone. It’s there when we hold a door open for someone, give someone a compliment, ask them how their day is going, or cook them a meal. The list is endless. It’s in the bigger things when we are passionate about a cause and we set up something to help others. We all know of groups like this.

But one we may not know too much about is called The Apostleship of the Sea. Sea Sunday, as this Sunday is called, is an opportunity for us to become aware of a cause that may strike a cord in us to be that bucket of goodness and love that someone may need. It is always an outpouring of ourselves to one another. And the wonder of it all is that because we are in the flow we also become recipients of goodness and love.

With every blessing

Fiona Rammell, Lay Pastoral Leader

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The Cathedral Connection 2 July 2017

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KALEIDOSCOPE

The 2nd of July was a Sunday in 1967, as it is today. I was ordained a priest that day in my home town of Dannevirke by Bishop Owen Snedden. Today, 50 years later, I welcome the opportunity to give thanks for this life-time of ministry, and to share this day with some of my family and the people who have become family through my priesthood. I am grateful to God and to all of you.

I haven’t looked through a kaleidoscope for years, but I readily recall the thrill and the joy of doing so. The way the coloured shapes reconfigured as the tube was turned, sparkling and shining, always delighted me. The image returned when thinking about my life as a priest, and the experiences this life has brought me, especially among families.

The variety has been enormous, the situations a continual mix of happiness and sadness, troubled questioning and easy conversation, challenging times and wonderful companionship. These, and much more are the colours of my life, interlacing, locking for a time, expanding and suddenly reconfiguring – all the while carrying me on a journey of self-discovery and appreciating my place in the lives of others. Each of my several pastoral appointments have been like another turn of the kaleidoscope, presenting a new display of God’s wonderful creation, fascinating patterns weaving their way through real life stories.

Even though, at times, I have doubted my ability or worthiness, I realise I have never not delighted in the life I have known. Amid constantly changing circumstances, like the unexpected combinations in the kaleidoscope’s shapes and colours, being open to surprise and delighting in it all have given me roots and wings for pastoral ministry, for friendship and for personal growth.

Thank you, family of my past and present, for your part in it all.

Fr James

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The Cathedral Connection 18 June 2017

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Dear Parishioners

My adult children returned recently from walking the Camino through Spain. When I asked them the highlight of the pilgrimage they all agreed: meeting the people! It was the relationships established with the people they met that gave their walk meaning.

But as special as relationships can be, they can also bring us face to face with angst, discord and disharmony.

With all relationships there is an ebb and flow. They are never static. They are alive and so they grow and change.  Relationships are the means by which each of us grows. When I am on my own I can get along with everyone! But when I venture into relationship then I leave myself open not just for great joy but also great pain.

Relationships are never perfect. But they are the heartbeat of our lives.  Without them we are just beings that keep busy doing stuff rather than being. The hint is in the name: we are human beings, not human doings.

And so I come to “be” with you, to walk alongside you as we journey together. I look forward to all I can learn from you and to get to know your stories, your hopes and your desires.

As the Maori proverb says in reply to “what is the most important thing in the world?”…Te Tangata, Te tangata, Te tangata…it is the people, the people, the people.

My sincere thanks to you, the parishioners of Sacred Heart Cathedral, for being open to this opportunity for me to walk amongst you and alongside you. I look forward to getting to know you all.

With every blessing

Fiona Rammell – Lay Pastoral Leader

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The Cathedral Connection – 11 June 2017

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TRINITY – MODEL OF UNITY

All life is relational. Nothing and no one stays alive long without the means to live – whether that’s air to breathe or sun to warm or rain for growing or people to learn from or friends to hold. Relationships are the building blocks of every life form. This is especially so for human life in which love is crucial. Made in the image of God, each of us is a walking, jumping, thinking and talking expression of the Trinity. Drawn into relationship with one another, we can witness God’s presence simply by being true to ourselves and our nature.

God as Parent is creative, bringing into being and sustaining life. God as Son is the healer and reconciler, mending the brokenness in creation caused by the misuse of the gift of freedom. God as Holy Spirit is the encourager, the enabler, the one who breathes wisdom and joy into our efforts, unites and harmonises the variety of gifts, these aspects of our one God are highlighted in today’s readings: the Book of Exodus announcing the special relationship between God and humanity as the God of tenderness and compassion; the beautiful passage from 1 Corinthians, urging our faithfulness to this relation-ship by growing in unity and peace; and the Gospel, proclaiming God’s love for the world – so great that this God chose to experience life as a human person!

Those who attended the Lutheran/Roman Catholic service in our cathedral last Sunday, were moved by the sheer emotion of coming together after 500 years of separateness. Honesty and humility stood out starkly as Bishop Mark and Cardinal John led the nearly full cathedral in prayers of confession, hope and thanksgiving. A new relationship has been formed and the path to unity has become much clearer. Our Triune God, the model of unity, is worshipped and honoured in this open commitment to healing and renewal.

Fr James

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The Cathedral Connection 4 June 2011

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Dear Parishioners,

When a priest turns 75, he can either offer to retire or continue in pastoral ministry, perhaps with less responsibility. When my turn came late last year I informed Cardinal John that I was happy to carry on but I felt the need of some pastoral assistance. Because we now have fewer priests I did not anticipate this happening and was delighted to learn that a Lay Pastoral Leader would be joining our parish team.

Fiona Rammell began a 15 hours per week contract last Monday and will serve you, with me, the parish and school of Sacred Heart Cathedral. This time can only increase as she meets the pastoral opportunities and challenges here. Cardinal John will formally commission Fiona at the 10.30am Mass next Sunday, 11 June.

In welcoming Fiona, I present her as a partner with me in all things relating to our faith community. Soon she will take my place on our school’s Board of Trustees and her experience also makes her an ideal assistant to Angela Helbano in coordinating the Confirmation/First Communion programme. She will be a valued addition to our Pastoral Council and will be one of our delegates at the Archdiocesan Synod in September.

Fiona’s formation as Lay Pastoral Leader has meant a study and practical programme spread over eight years. She has already assisted the Archdiocese with re-writing the sacramental syllabus used in parishes and schools. As a wife and mother of four, Fiona brings a wealth of personal skills as nurturer and caregiver that will greatly benefit Sacred Heart Parish and school.

I have no doubt you will also welcome Fiona and give her every assistance.  Pray God’s blessing on her as she begins her commitment among us. She comes with Pentecost as a gift of the Spirit, a practical expression of the joy of the Gospel!

Fr James

The full newsletter can be viewed here.