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Reflection – 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time Jun 28, 2024

13th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Fr Isaac

As I get closer and closer to that inevitable time when I will one day have to leave this magnificent parish and venture out on my own, I have been thinking a lot about what exactly a parish is, and what role it should play in your lives, the faithful. The Catholic Church has a rich tradition of outlining the mission and responsibilities of the faithful within the parish community. Let’s take a closer look at what the key Church documents have to say:

Proclaiming the Gospel: The principal objective of the parish is to spread the good news of Jesus Christ. The faithful (you the parishioners) are not just passive recipients of the faith but are actively called to witness to the Gospel through your lives and words. The parish is meant to be a centre of the new evangelisation, which equips and empowers the faithful to bring the message of the Gospel to the world. Such evangelisation initiatives in the parish include formation opportunities for men, women, young adults and youth group (starting soon), as well as the Net Team.

Participating in the Sacramental Life: The parish is also where the faithful regularly celebrate the sacraments, especially the Eucharist, which is the vital and community-forming activity. Through active participation in the sacramental life, the faithful receive the grace to live out their baptismal call. The parish’s responsibility is to provide catechesis and sacramental preparation to help the faithful grow in their understanding and living of the faith. These initiatives include a wide range of devotions, daily Eucharist, and Saturday confession.

Engaging in Works of Charity and Service: The mission of the faithful also includes engaging in works of Christian love and service. The parish community is meant to be a place where the diverse gifts and talents of the faithful are contributed for the common good. Through acts of charity and service, the faithful imitate the example of Christ by bringing the power of the Gospel to the world. This initiative is our Friday night homeless BBQ.

Cooperating with Church Leadership: Finally, the faithful are called to cooperate with the parish clergy and Church leadership, working in unity for the Church’s mission. While the laity have their own proper role, they are to do so in communion with the pastoral guidance of the clergy. This spirit of co-operation and unity is vital, as the parish is organically connected to the universal Church and the particular diocese.

In summary, the Church documents paint a clear vision of the faithful’s mission in the parish – from proclaiming the Gospel to celebrating the sacraments, from engaging in works of charity to co-operating with Church leadership. By living out this mission, the faithful not only deepen their own relationship with Christ, but also contribute to the renewal and vitality of the parish and the wider Church.

 

Fr Isaac Falzon

 

 

 

 

 

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