Synod ’17 – Update 1

The full update including Synod Calendar, can be viewed here.

Dear Friends

Work is going on in earnest in preparation for the Synod in
September. The Synod Committee has been making good progress in dealing with the many decisions and actions needed. With the new year well underway and parishes making plans for the year, we are sending you the first Synod Update so that you can factor the Synod timeline into your plans.
I said in the Decree of Convocation for the Synod:
“In convoking a Synod I am mindful of Pope Francis’ desire that we advance along the path of “a pastoral and missionary conversion which cannot leave things as they presently are”. He explains what he means by “pastoral and missionary conversion” when he writes: “Pastoral ministry in a missionary key seeks to abandon the complacent action which says ‘We have always done it this way’”. It means being bold and creative in rethinking the goals,
structures, style and methods of evangelization and service to the world in our Archdiocese with its diverse communities. In particu-lar, it means taking on board his message to “go out” to the wider world.”
The topics for the Synod are primarily drawn from the directions Pope Francis has been putting before us. The topics are:
the peripheries of society; our own peripheries; refugees and mi-grants; care for creation; ecumenism; accompanying the young; marriage and family. In addition there are two topics which reflect particular needs in the Archdiocese: leadership; bicultural and eth-nic diversity. These topics will be the subject of the diocese-wide consultation process which begins on 7 May.
Prayer and discernment will be critical factors in the Synod
process, and I have asked Fr Alan Roberts to look at how we can provide formation in discernment prior to the Synod. He will be talking about this at the Ministry Formation Day on 28 February.
As we journey together towards the Synod, we pray for one anoth-er and for the Archdiocese.
With prayerful best wishes
+John