Category Archives: Cathedral News

Cathedral & Pastoral Area Bulletins & Other Related News.

The Cathedral Connection 8 September 2019

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Tirohia, Wānangatia, Mahia

 Do to others what you would have them do to you…

 The above Te Reo phrase See, Judge, Act, is the catch phrase for this year’s Social Justice Week, with Fairness the theme.  In today’s Gospel Jesus tells us that to be his disciples we must take up our crosses and follow him.  Luke constantly uses vocabulary that indicates that the disciple’s cross is not a singular event, but a way of life.  Jesus implores us to be intentional disciples.

Pope Francis recently called for a ‘’revolution of tenderness’’: a love that comes close and real; a movement starting from the heart which flows to the eyes, ears, and hands.

As disciples, the source of love and peace must be at the centre of all that we do.  When we love someone, we show this by being loyal, by seeking to do the right thing for them, and giving preference to them.  Showing love comes naturally with our family and friends, those already known to us.  The real challenge comes as we seek to show love to those other around us.  The New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference encourage us to use this Social Justice Week as an opportunity to reflect and take action on social justice issues in light of Catholic social teaching.

Next month Pope Francis has called an Extraordinary Month of Mission.  Over the past two months your Pastoral Council has been reflecting on practical opportunities for fostering a spirituality of service that will invite you to, as Pope Francis has asked ‘’get off the couch’’ and respond daily, taking up your cross and following Jesus.

Individually, as intentional disciples, this week may we be inspired by St Teresa of Calcutta “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love”.  How will you mark this Social Justice Week?

Debbie Matheson
Lay Pastoral Leader

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The Cathedral Connection – 1 September 2019

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One of the important measures currently being considered by Parliament is the Zero Carbon Bill, which sets out a way forward for this country to reduce its net emissions of carbon dioxide to zero by 2050. There is no doubt of the importance, and urgency, of action to address climate change, and the Archdiocesan Commission for Ecology, Justice and Peace made a submission to the Select Committee considering the Bill, representatives appearing before the committee last Monday.

In preparing its submission, commission members were very much guided by Pope Francis’s 2015 encyclical Laudato Si’: On care for our common home. Laudato Si’ is a rich and rewarding document, readily available online.  In his usual plain language, Francis reminds us that environmental issues are ethical and spiritual issues. The whole universe ‘speaks of God’s love, his boundless affection for us. Soil, water, mountains: everything is, as it were, a caress of God… When we can see God reflected in all that exists, our hearts are moved to praise the Lord for all his creatures and to worship him in union with them’.

We need to remind ourselves that ‘the world is a gift which we have freely received and must share with others’, including future generations.  In urging action to deal with climate change, pollution, and the extinction of species, the pope stresses that technology alone will not be enough. He encourages politicians and diplomats to work co-operatively for a global consensus.

Francis encourages us all. ‘For all our limitations, gestures of generosity, solidarity and care cannot but well up within us, since we were made for love’. These themes have been evident in our recent parish discussions. With the coming of spring, may we continue to give thanks for the earth that sustains us and continue to care for it and for each other.

Jim McAloon
Chair, Parish Pastoral Council.

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The Cathedral Connection 25 August 2019

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In the Sunday’s Gospel Luke tells us about the entrance into the kingdom of God and how there is no such thing as automatic entry. While Jesus is making his way to Jerusalem, someone asks him about the number who will be saved. Rather than speculate about the number who will deserve salvation, Jesus give practical advise on how you might enter: ‘Try your best to enter by the narrow door, because I tell you, many will try to enter and will not succeed.’

The door is a narrow opening so believers must strive to enter it. It is a warning against presumption. Salvation depends on the favour and grace of God and the honest struggle to follow God completely in his ways.

On a personal note on St Bartholomew’s feast Day I will have been six years a priest.

Fr Stephen Rossetti in ‘The Joy of Priesthood’ wrote;
“My brothers, you are a sign of hope. In a world of darkness, your presence, which is the presence of Jesus, is a light for the world. Despite your frail humanity, or because of it, the light of Christ shines more brightly.”

That powerful statement has resided in my heart from the day I read it in the Seminary. I have also realised I would not be the priest I am if it wasn’t for the people I serve, who have allowed me into their lives so generously and genuinely as their priest.

My Prayerful thanks

Fr Doug

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The Cathedral Connection 18 August 2019

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Jesus – Bringer of Peace or Division

 At first sight, today’s Gospel is confusing. This doesn’t seem to be the Jesus we all know! Preachers and people alike find it hard to reconcile these passages with other passages of scripture.

One explanation is that the language of Jesus’ time was not as ‘robust’ as modern languages and nuances get missed. So, in those days, in order to say, ‘I like Mary more than Jane” I would have to say, “I love Mary, I hate Jane.’ Hearers and readers would understand, but we would say it differently as our languages are more developed.

There has also been unnecessary division amongst the followers of Christ, and even Christians relationships with those of other faiths. This goes against the words of Jesus in John 17/21 – ‘Father, may they all be one, as I am in you and you are in me!’ Yes, some of our divisions have been both unnecessary and unjust, and often a scandal.

But I think Jesus’ message here is really about passion. From the 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time, we follow Jesus’ journey from his Galilean home towards his death in Jerusalem (Luke 9:51-19:27).  There is an urgency about Jesus’ message.  In numerous passages about discipleship and judgment day, Jesus warns against stocking worldly wealth, as we read a fortnight ago about the rich fool building barns for a retirement that he did not have. The decision to follow Jesus or not will separate people.

So, the real point of the gospel is the decision to follow Jesus completely now – Yes or No.  Some points for reflection —  Is there an urgency and passion in my life? If so, what is it for? What are the costs to follow it: peace, money, time, relationships, etc.? What would be the cost if I do NOT follow that passion now?

Fr Ron Bennett, Moderator.

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The Cathedral Connection 11 August 2019

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Initiation to the Christian life

It is both a privilege and an opportunity for personal growth when you accompany people on their journey to explore our Catholic faith. The parish currently has two people wanting to embark upon a journey through a Rite of Christian Initiation (RCIA) formation programme that starts at the beginning of September. The piece below, written by Joe Green, the Archdiocesan RCIA Co-ordinator, explores te ara (the pathway) of the RCIA programme and the role of the parish.  We hope Joe’s reflective questions will encourage you to attend an information evening on how you can become involved in various aspects of this year’s programme (see notice inside for details).

The initiation of catechumens is a gradual process that takes place within the community of the faithful’ (RCIA #4). This simple sentence sums up the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, the ‘RCIA’. It is this sentence that is driving a sea-change around the world in the way catechumens, those who are not baptised Christians, are initiated to Christian life (not to be confused with the baptised who wish to become Catholic).

And what is the Christian life? The RCIA (#75) outlines four major components: worship and prayer, word, community and mission and service.

Since the RCIA was revitalised following Vatican II it has tended to be seen as a class-based introduction to Catholicism, heavily loaded with learning dogma and doctrine.

Dogma and doctrine are important, but they are only one small part of the process. More important is participation in the life of the parish: liturgies, prayer, social groups, service such as communion to the sick, foodbanks, St Vincent de Paul, community committees, support to refugees and migrants, Catholic social action.

As a parish community do we live this Christian life? Why would someone want to join us? How do we help them grow? What would keep them here?

Debbie Matheson, Lay Pastoral Leader

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