• RESOURCE:

    The Advent of Grace

    A range of resources to assist parishes during the Season of Advent, including weekly reflections, prayer card templates and more. 
News and Resources

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Exploring the practicalities and possibilities of RCIA in your parish/school

Tuesday 13 August --- We are offering two RCIA workshops this August—one focused on the planning, preparation and promotion of RCIA in the parish and the other on adapting the Rite for the preparation and initiation of children. These workshops are suitable for those new to and interested in the RCIA and those involved in catechetics or sacrament preparation (particularly the sacraments of initiation). Both workshops will be offered twice, to enable as many coordinators to attend. 
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Everyone Leads: A seminar for parish pastoral leaders

Thursday 5 September --- Drawing on decades of leadership experience, bestselling US-author Chris Lowney will examine the profound challenges facing the global Catholic Church, share real-life stories of Catholics making a difference, and offer practical suggestions for change. Chris will not only outline the challenges but also map the path forward. 
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Watch talks from the 2019 Christian Leadership Series

The Christian Leadership Series is an annual offering for parish leaders and all those interested in exploring what Christian leadership looks and feels like in the context of 21st century Australia. This year’s four-week series offered participants a survey of key books, themes and figures from our biblical tradition. Guided by some of the country’s leading biblical scholars, a range of topics were explored from creation through to the prophetic movement, the Lukan narrative and the Pauline letters. Missed the series? Watch them online >
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Six national themes for discernment announced

More than 222,000 people participated in listening and dialogue encounters and contributed 17,457 submissions during the first stage of preparation for the Australian Plenary Council. The voices of the faithful help all of us to understand something of the historical experience and the current reality of the Catholic Church in Australia. The six National Themes for Discernment are inspired by the data and call us toward the future.

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Articles from The Summit Online:

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Fall in love and stay in love

Rev. Dr Elio Capra SDB talks about the period of mystagogy, which takes place during the fifty days of Easter. "For those who have gone through the RCIA journey, this is the period for ‘mystagogy’. It is a time for mystagogical catechesis, not only for the ‘neophytes’ (the newly baptised), but also for the rest of us, the ‘old-phytes’. We are all on a mystagogical journey which only finishes ‘when our lives return to their source in the inexhaustible mystery of God’ (Nathan Mitchell, in Assembly: A Journal of Liturgical Theology, 2000). This is a theological way of saying that we all need mystagogical catechesis until the day we die and meet Jesus Christ face to face."
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Celebrating the Paschal Mystery: From Ash to Flame

Every moment of human life is subject to the play of multiple rhythms of time, some daily, others weekly, monthly, yearly or seasonal. Annual rhythms include the calendar year, the financial year, the school year, the sporting year and the cycle of nature’s seasons. For Christian believers, there’s another, more fundamental rhythm. It’s the calendar of faith, the annual cycle of feasts and seasons by which the church celebrates the mystery of Jesus Christ. The proper name for this is the ‘liturgical year’, though this expression only became current in the twentieth century. 

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Is it really Lent without catechumens and the scrutinies?

Rev. Dr Elio Capra SDB reflects on the original meaning of Lent: 'a time when God calls us into the desert so that through a process of purification and enlightenment, [so] we will once again fall in love with Christ and make him the centre of our lives. ... The process of purification and enlightenement becomes evident and alive through the celebration of the scrutinies. They are rituals celebrated during the third, fourth and fifth weeks of Lent to prepare those who are to be initiated (the elect) during the Easter Vigil (RCIA §133).'

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The Lent environment

'From the moment we hear the cry from the book of Joel on Ash Wednesday, "Now, now—it is the Lord who speaks—come back to me with all your heart, fasting, weeping, mourning" (Joel 2:12), we are invited to plunge into a different world, a different way of being. Cathy Jenkins writes about the "Australian colour of Lent"—a Lent that, in this part of the world, takes place amidst the changing of seasons from summer into autumn, thus encouraging an invitation to 'cultivate a Lenten spirit'. She offers insights into the colours, symbols, prayers and sounds of Lent.

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Stations of the Cross: One of Catholicism’s most identifiable traditions

The Stations or Way of the Cross are one of the most identifiable devotional practices in Catholicism. As Dr Paul Taylor writes, "The Stations of the Cross serve a similar role to the passion narratives in the gospels: they invite us to contemplate and draw strength from the suffering and death of the Lord Jesus. The stations connect us with the early church, whose members looked forward with eager hope to Christ’s coming again in glory. When we look at the stations now, we are called to reflect upon Christ’s example of giving himself totally in his suffering and death, and we are invited to follow his path of love, self-sacrifice and service in our lives." 

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Luke: The Missionary Disciple

This Advent, as the church embarks on a new liturgical cycle, we turn our attention to the Gospel of Luke. It is timely, then, to pause and reflect on some of Luke’s rich insights, and to acquaint ourselves better with a gospel that speaks directly to our humanity, consistently reminding us of the joy and mercy to be experienced not only during Advent and at Christmas, but throughout our journey of discipleship. On a rainy October evening, parish and school liturgy teams from across the Archdiocese of Melbourne gathered to do just that in the first of two Advent preparation sessions. Their guide was Ria Greene.

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