Also, you can access an online copy of the newsletter *here*
"Peter answered, 'You are the Messiah.'" (Mark 8: 29)
Shutterstock licensed Image ID: 137303555- ROME - APRIL 4: Mosaic in the Saint Peter Cathedralin the Vatican on April 4, 2013, in Rome, Italy. St. Peter's Basilica is considered the largest Christian church in the world. By Pierre Jean Durieu)
PASTOR'S POST: Just Say "NO"
While Fr Peter recovers from Illness, here is another gem from our archives:
"No, you may not". "Why not?" "Because I said so . . . ."
How often did I have that conversation, or rather monologue, with either of my parents for most of my childhood? Although it was not a satisfying outcome, it usually meant the end of any further discussion. For me then, and now, 'NO' was a non-negotiable directive and it was usually respected.
Somehow, over the years, 'no' got to be seen as 'maybe', particularly when accompanied by whinging and whining and especially effective when followed up with "but everyone else is allowed to". I recently heard a parent saying that they had great difficulty getting their 11-year-old to Mass on Sundays. Their child apparently said, "It doesn't interest me, and other parents don't make their kids go". Well, kid, sometimes it doesn't interest me either, but fortunately, someone, many years ago, said "no" to my belief that my needs were superior to everyone else's, and I eventually came to understand that often we need to do things that are not always about my enjoyment, but more to do with the needs of others. I appreciate that it is particularly difficult for parents to juggle respect and authority these days, but I am sure the parent instruction manual says somewhere your children won't understand why you do some things till they become parents themselves.
Frequently "no" is not easy to say because we are afraid that someone won't like us when we say it. Well, I know that Jesus said love your enemies, he didn't say don't have any. Of course, people might not like hearing "no", but people who always say "yes" end up building a lot of resentment towards others, and they get tired of always putting others first. "Yes," people feel that they are not in control and always trying to please everyone else catches up with them, and they try to avoid being with these demanding people.
The hardest part of saying "no" is doing it for the first time. We anticipate the worst and expect outrage from the person making the request. In learning to say "no", the following pointers may help.
First, be brief and quick with your response. To hesitate and ramble often sends a message of uncertainty. Be sure that "no" is the right and truthful response, not simply an avoidance response.
Secondly, don't burn your bridges. If you think that in the future you may wish to say "yes" to another invitation or request from that person, simply say "thanks for asking but I cannot do it at the moment, thanks for asking."
The third pointer is to separate the request from the person. You are not rejecting the person, simply to request they are making at the moment. "No," said with concern and respect, should be understood in the same way. If not, then perhaps it is nothing you can do anything about.
May those who love us, love us.
And those who don't love us, may God turn their hearts.
And if God doesn't turn their hearts, may he turn their ankles,
So that we will know them by their limping. (Traditional Celtic Lore)
Fr Peter Dillon. PP (From a Pastor's post originally published 10.09.17)
BLESSING OF THE GROUNDS OF NEW SCHOOL, STAR OF THE SEA:
Although the last lockdown cancelled the official Blessing of the school site, originally scheduled with Archbishop Mark, Fr Paul Kelly from Surfers Paradise Parish visited on the Feast of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Blessed the school site at Merrimac. Fr Paul is pictured with Principal Tony Barron, and Maree Wright, the Assistant Principal Religious Education. Fr Peter Dillon send his best wishes and prayers as he is recovering from illness. Fr Paul was very excited to see building progress and growth of our school in the coming months and years! Blessing of the site was prior to major construction work beginning next week. The Blessing occurred around 11 am on Wednesday the 8th September 2021. The Feast of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary. A fitting date and a perfect birthday present to Our Lady, Star of the Sea, the school's Patron Saint.
STARTING NEXT YEAR - NEW PRIMARY SCHOOL WITHIN OUR PARISH
Star of the Sea - Merrimac
Initially Prep to Year 3, and then extend
From Archbishop Mark Coleridge of Brisbane
The Queensland Parliament, in the next few weeks, will be debating and voting on controversial laws to make euthanasia and assisted suicide legal in the state.
These laws, if passed, will overturn foundational principles that have underpinned our medical and legal systems for centuries – the ethic of 'do no harm,' and the prohibition on killing. We need to do all we can to protect Queenslanders rather than assist them to die. Euthanasia and assisted suicide laws undermine the fundamental relationship of trust that should exist between a patient and their doctor. They have the potential to put vulnerable Queenslanders who are elderly or terminally ill at risk of wrongful death, including placing pressure on them to take their own lives so as not to be a 'burden' on their family and friends. We have seen this occur in countries overseas that have gone down this path.
I am asking you to take two important steps today.
First, I ask you to sign this petition to the Queensland Parliament, asking them to reject this euthanasia and assisted suicide law. The petition is sponsored by HOPE, a single-issue coalition of groups who oppose euthanasia and assisted suicide.
Petition link: https://www.noeuthanasia.org.au/petition_2108_qld
Second, I ask you to email your Queensland State Member of Parliament and urge them to oppose the introduction of these laws.
Send an email to your MP link: https://www.noeuthanasia.org.au/protect_life_qld
This matter is now urgent.
Vulnerable sick and elderly people in Queensland need your help to ensure these lethal laws are not passed in this state. I urge you to sign the petition and email your MP today and ask friends and family to do the same.
As always in the Lord,
Archbishop Mark Coleridge
ARCHDIOCESE OF BRISBANE
The Italian Community of Brisbane and Gold Coast invites all devotees of Saint Padre Pio of Pietrelcina to the Annual Pilgrimage to Marian Valley, Canungra, on Saturday 18 September 2021. Program: 10.30am Rosary, 11.00am Way of the Cross, 12.30pm Mass, followed by procession to the Chapel. All services will be in Italian. BYO lunch. A bus will be departing Holy Cross, Wooloowin. Places are limited, please contact Nerina La Spina on 3357 1220 for bus bookings.
It's never easy to find the right balance between sitting quietly and attentively on the sidelines and joining in the scrum of life's adventures. Our life of prayer helps us to discern how best to hold these together and to respond with love for ourselves and the common good. Saint Gregory the Great was a Benedictine monk of the late sixth century and loved his life as a contemplative. Yet, when called upon to take the helm of a church suffering from the fall of Rome and the plague, he stepped up and found his calling expressed in new ways through prayer, caring for those in need, and leading compassionately. Let us all find the right balance between action and contemplation. ("In him, all the fullness was pleased to dwell," Colossians 1:15-20)
STEWARDSHIP REFLECTION - 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time
"Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me." Mark 8:34
Living a stewardship lifestyle means not only being responsible for my own life but for the lives of others as well. We realize that our gifts are not intended for ourselves, rather they are meant to be shared with others. "Taking up my cross" means doing things when someone else needs me and not when it's convenient for me. The vision of Stewardship speaks in every aspect of life, inviting everyone to be thankful, generous and accountable for what each has been given.
NEXT SESSION - SUNDAY MORNING 12TH SEPTEMBER 2021
In-person at the Parish Hospitality Centre and also coming to you on ZOOM!
10 AM TO 11:30 AM IN THE PARISH HOSPITALITY CENTRE OR ON ZOOM
If you want to connect from your home, we can assist you in joining (ring 0409 486 326).
If you are already familiar with Zoom, access to the ZOOM Meeting is ID 743 836 7833
This exciting 20-part (20 hours) DVD series takes you through the major people, places and events that make up the history of the Catholic Church. You will see the glory of the Church founded by Christ and understand where you fit into this Epic story.
You will study:
The major people, places, and events of the past two thousand years in Church history.
Learn the twelve time-periods of Church history
Grasp the true story of the Crusades
Recognise the rationale for the medieval inquisitors and the Spanish inquisition
See the revolutionary character of the Protestant Reformation
Understand the real story of the confrontation between Galileo and the Church
Discover the massive persecution of Christians in the twentieth century
Discern the workings of the Holy Spirit throughout Church history
We have at least one study set available (but can order more if need be) so come along to the next session, you are most welcome. The Study Set will cost $44.99 (no mark up - just the internet advertised cost - freight is on us) and includes everything you need to participate and complete the 20-part study.
If anyone is desperate to be a part of this but cannot afford the $44.99 or is able to just afford some of it - please DO NOT let this stop you - we are very happy to have you participate.
FOR YOUNG AND NOT SO YOUNG AND IN-BETWEEN
This weekend, the Catholic Church in Australia marks Safeguarding Sunday, on which we pray for those who have been abused, their families and supporters. We recognise and apologise for the harm done by priests, religious and lay people in Church settings. We recommit to practices that support survivors and make the Catholic Church and its ministries the safest possible place for children and people at risk.
You can find out more about the Church's work in this area at: www.catholic.org.au/ safeguardingsunday
Grant us, Lord God, a vision of your world as your love would have it: A world where the weak are protected, and none go hungry or poor;
A world where the riches of creation are shared, and everyone can enjoy them;
A world where different races and cultures live in harmony and mutual respect;
A world where peace is built with justice, and justice is guided by love. Give us the inspiration and courage to build it, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
Confirmation Preparation has begun!
The children and their families have started their "At Home Preparation for Confirmation" and we are excited to have already received this image of the prayer space that one family has created together.
The Surfers Paradise Parish will celebrate the Sacrament of Confirmation on October 15. We ask all parishioners to keep these children and their families in their prayers. May they open their hearts and minds to the light and love of God as they seek to learn more about the gifts of the Spirit. May our whole Parish family be inspired by the power of the Holy Spirit alive among us, today and always.
105 Surfers Paradise Parish children celebrated their First Holy Communion on May 30 and June 6, 2021. For your child to be included in next year's preparation group, please go to the parish website www.surfersparadiseparish.com.au and complete an online enrolment application. Please use the drop-down menu under Sacraments and click on First Holy Communion (under Sacraments). Then scroll down to and click on CHILDREN'S SACRAMENTAL PROGRAM APPLICATION FORM (in the blue box).
In the Archdiocese of Brisbane, Reconciliation follows the Sacraments of Initiation. That is, Reconciliation, also known as Penance, follows Baptism, Confirmation and First Communion. The Surfers Paradise Sacramental Team's plan for Reconciliation is to prepare a program similar in style to the Confirmation and First Communion Preparation Programs. This will be a lengthy task, we are unable to provide an exact starting date, but we urge all parents and caregivers to continue to check our newsletter for updates.
We are in need of volunteers to man the library before and after mass during the weekends. If you are called to help in the library, we shall appreciate it if you can contact Esta Mostert by texting / WhatsApp her on
+61 410542427 or email her: email@example.com
Please text your name, WhatsApp or phone number and/or your email address to her as well as the times that you will be available. Alternatively, write your name on the Library Volunteer list at the back of the church. Ezekiel 2:9 Then I looked, and behold, a hand was extended to me; and lo, a scroll was in it. Source: https://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/Books
THE LIFE OF MARY AS SEEN BY THE MYSTICS: Book Review. By Paul Mullins.
The following book is part of the Parish Library collection. Compiled by Raphael Brown, this is a book on the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary compiled from of the private revelations to four great Catholic mystics being St. Elizabeth of Schoenau, St. Bridget of Sweden, Venerable Mother Mary of Jesus of Agreda and Sr. Anne Catherine Emmerich.
Beginning with the backgrounds and lives of Mary's parents and grandparents, the book combines the visions into a chronologically correct and coherent story that reads like a novel and includes many direct quotes of the Blessed Virgin from the journals of the four mystics. As such, it provides insight into the inner workings of Mary's own heart. Readers will gain a wonderful understanding of many details concerning Mary, Jesus and Joseph as the Holy Family.
The book reveals many marvellous, surprising and interesting details about events in Mary's life including the Annunciation, the Nativity, the Flight to Egypt and life in Egypt, the hidden life of Jesus, St John the Baptist, the Wedding at Cana, her special relationship with St John and many more.
A useful book for those who maybe seeking new ways/words to pray to God and/or for new intentions to request. It is also a wonderful lesson in humility as Mary was herself God's most humble creature and did not consider herself worthy to be chosen as the Mother of the Redeemer.
The book also offers answers to questions such as why is Mary is mentioned only fifteen times in the Gospels, why we pray "now and at the hour of our death" in the Hail Mary and how Mary influenced the formation of the Apostles' Creed.
"Prayer is the place of refuge for every worry, a foundation for cheerfulness, a source of constant happiness, a protection against sadness." Saint John Chrysostom
"If you cannot find Christ in the beggar at the church door, you will not find Him in the chalice." Saint John Chrysostom.
"Happiness can only be achieved by looking inward & learning to enjoy whatever life has and this requires transforming greed into gratitude." Saint John Chrysostom
"Be ashamed when you sin, don't be ashamed when you repent [To repent means to have a change of heart and mind. It is not simply a feeling of sorrow, but a spiritual growth away from evil/death and a turning to God/life]. Sin is the wound, and repentance is the medicine. Sin is followed by shame, and repentance is followed by boldness - [Boldness means to beg God for undeserved mercy]. Satan has overturned this order and given boldness to sin and shame to repentance." Saint John Chrysostom
"Not to share our own wealth with the poor is theft from the poor and deprivation of their means of life; we do not possess our own wealth, but theirs." Saint John Chrysostom.
"The bee is more honoured than other animals, not because she labours, but because she labours for others." Saint John Chrysostom
"Why not learn to enjoy the little things- For there are so many of them." Saint John Chrysostom.
"You cannot have God for your Father if you do not have the Church for your mother…. God is one and Christ is one and His Church is one; one is the faith and one is the people cemented together by harmony into the strong unity of a body…. If we are the heirs of Christ, let us abide in the peace of Christ; if we are the sons of God, let us be lovers of peace."…St Cyprian from The Unity of the Catholic Church.
"You who are envious, let me tell you that however often you may seek for the opportunity of injuring him whom you hate, you will never be able to do him so much harm as you do harm to yourselves. He whom you would punish through the malice of your envy may probably escape but you will never be able to fly from yourselves." St Cyprian of Carthage (190-258)
"Charity is that with which no man is lost, and without which no man is saved." Saint Robert Bellarmine
"On the last day, when the general examination takes place, there will be no question at all on the text of Aristotle, the aphorisms of Hippocrates, or the paragraphs of Justinian. Charity will be the whole syllabus." St Robert Bellarmine
"Freedom of belief is pernicious, it is nothing but the freedom to be wrong." Robert Bellarmine
"When we appeal to the throne of grace we do so through Mary, honouring God by honouring His Mother, imitating Him by exalting her, touching the most responsive chord in the sacred heart of Christ with the sweet name of Mary." Robert Bellarmine
(Some taken from - https://www.azquotes.com/author/21940-Saint_John_Chrysostom ) (Image - Shutterstock license: ID: 219218182 -Ravenna, Italy - CIRCA AUGUST, 2013 - 1500 years old Byzantine mosaics of the apostles holding wreaths at the St Apolonaire church in Ravenna.-By Michal Szymanski)
THE GOSPEL THIS WEEKEND - "You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns." (Mark 8:33)
This weekend in the readings, we are reminded that our faith must show itself in ACTION, and flow into good works. And in the gospel, Our Lord reminds us that following him is not about self-interest, but about denying ourselves and taking up our cross and following him, in HIS ways of service, sacrifice and compassion. No wonder the three theological virtues are so important and go together... Faith leads to hope, and hope leads to love that shows itself in practical action.
A Dramatic series of events in today's Gospel. Jesus firmly says: "You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns." (Mark 8:33)
We are reminded again that if we truly want to know Jesus, and WHO he is, we need to understand what he DOES. Truly believing in Jesus will always lead to practical actions, particular behaviours and specific attitudes, just as the truth of Jesus' identity led to wonderful (and often surprising and challenging) actions and attitudes from Our Lord himself.
Once Saint Peter correctly named WHO Jesus is, when Jesus asked his disciples "who do you say I Am?" – St Peter says, "you are the Christ" (God's anointed one, the Messiah). Jesus immediately sets about teaching them what "being the Christ" will mean. And, this is what utterly shocked them, as it still challenges us today. Jesus, God's own Son, the anointed one, the Christ, the one who will save the people – must suffer grievously, die and then rise again. What an astounding thing! It would be an understatement to say that St Peter and the apostles didn't think that was the role of the Messiah when using the term. They would have thought he was some kind of warrior King who would banish the Romans and be completely victorious in a human sense, as a conquering leader and who would then go on to set up a new earthly Kingdom of God. Jesus was the hero, and the Hero does not get mistreated and die a horrible, humiliating death, (not in most people's books).[i] But Jesus said that you must let go of those concepts and listen to my teaching of how "The Christ" really should act and be.
Also, just as importantly, Jesus shows us the priorities and values of God's anointed - he healed the sick, forgave sinners, welcomed outcasts, he looked for the lost. He invited all people to be part of God's Kingdom. This was a "re-ordering" of values and priorities according to God's values. And it was bound to cause a lot of anger and hatred from those who liked things just the way they were – because those people were benefitting from the present status quo (at the expense of a lot of others who were trapped in terrible situations, unable to get out). Jesus had to take on those opposing powers and resist them until they threw everything possible at him. He knew that they would try to kill him and succeed, and then, only then, would God's victory over their evil be revealed in its fullness. Because you cannot bury God's plans and priorities and you cannot silence God's anointed one. But Jesus had to crucify all the opposing powers by taking the poisonous fruits of their values and actions and defeating them on the cross.
This was, most clearly, the narrow and troubled road, but it was the only true road that Jesus, and all who would follow him, must take.
"The Messiahship of Jesus is one of service, of suffering love and of self-giving love. There will be no triumph apart from the Cross. To be a disciple is to walk this same path of service, suffering and self-giving love."[ii]
The readings this weekend bear a lot of deep reading and reflection. Take for example the astounding first reading: From Isaiah, also proclaimed in Holy Week. The Lord is my judge, not the court of human opinion or popularity. It doesn't even matter if others think I am (or am not) a faithful servant of God, all that matters is what God thinks, and God is faithful and just. And more: "The Lord comes to my help so that I am untouched by the insults." Notice this very important sentence; God does not take away the insults and the wrongdoing and the troubles.. (neither does God desire these things, though), but God does come to us to abide with us and support us, so that the shocks, tragedies and insults of this world that we endure because of our following of the narrow path, or because of the terrible things that come up on the journey of life, so that we can at all times be at peace endure through these things that we find we cannot change, in order to come through victorious on the other side. God gives us the grace and peace and endurance to go through whatever may come. That is God's greatest gift to us. It does not control the outer environment or "stay the hand" of those who use their freedom to be destructive, but it does give the power to oppose and defeat all the empty and hateful ways that contradict Jesus' WAY.
And finally, I love today's second reading. It says things so clearly. From Saint James: if you say you follow Jesus but your actions and attitudes don't SHOW that in practical ways, then faith is quite dead and useless. It is like that modern-day, witty statement: "If Christianity was a crime, would they have enough evidence to convict you???"
Actually, you know what? I think for most Christians, (here in this community and throughout the communities of the world)…. there would indeed be ample evidence of their faith, by their lives and actions. But most of it would never be proclaimed from the rooftops, let alone mentioned except for quietly… because we need not prove it to anyone else but God, for these practical actions are not done to win popular admiration. But so many wonderful people daily do the most beautiful acts of kindness, love, forgiveness and practical charity for others ...... in big and small ways… (Many of these acts of kindness and love are so natural, so automatic and so humble that most people never even heard of it, but they are being done. And thanks be to God for all the wonderful people, living their Christian values. Faith showing itself in practical action!
Ironically, Saint Paul is the New Testament writer who has given so much to the Christian world about the meaning of Christ's death on the cross…. It was such a scandal and stumbling block for the early church that the Messiah, God the Son, the chosen one, could be allowed to die in what looked like abandonment and failure in the eyes of the world and even in the eyes of many of his followers….
It is initially surprising to see that Saint Paul should reflect so much on Christ's DEATH because he only ever met the RISEN lord! Paul never met Jesus when the Lord walked on the earth and preached the good news. Paul only came on the scene and encountered Jesus when Paul, (or Saul as he was at the time), was travelling along the road to Damascus to persecute these new "followers of Jesus," and it was only then that God said… "Why are you persecuting me?" and Paul realised at that moment, that the only person he was persecuting was the so-called criminal Jesus, whom he thought was dead and whose followers he considered a remnant dangerous to orthodoxy. Only then did he realise that he was completely on the wrong track. This leader, who had died, was alive and risen as they had said he was, and that in persecuting his followers, Saul was persecuting Christ, his Lord and God.
But, if St Paul found it challenging to understand the meaning of Christ's Cross… It explains why those apostles who walked with Jesus on earth and listened to his teaching, found it even more difficult to comprehend Jesus teaching in this gospel today. WHY should God's chosen one have to suffer? HOW CAN it be that this man of truth and life MUST die????... HOW could this be any kind of victory??? How will it achieve Anything????
Jesus wants to make it clear to all who are following him…. (as if to say…) …"I am not the one who is making false promises of success….. It is the liars and false prophets who promise worldly success and its trophies…. wealth, money, gold, earthly kingship, success, health and happiness in this life….. I am not offering this to you… I am offering you the way of the Cross…. The path of suffering, self-forgetting love and service… even to giving one's own life. Be under NO misapprehension about what following Christ means…." But also, trust that this path will gain the vindication, the stamp of approval from God the Father and it truly the way of everlasting life.
Right at the halfway point of Mark's Gospel… And it is THE HIGHPOINT of the whole gospel……Jesus asks the question "who do you say I am?" - He asks this question just outside a town that has monuments to the Roman Emperor, regarded by the pagans as like a god, and at the foot of the hills where the source of the Jordan River originates. This same River is the one in which Jesus was baptised by John, and the river is associated with the people being led into the promised land, under God's guiding hand.
Peter had rightly worked out WHO JESUS IS>>>>>////that Jesus was the Christ…. A word which means, anointed one… Messiah….God's Chosen King…. But the reason Jesus silences him as soon as he says this truth about him, and then shortly after rebukes Peter when he misunderstands what the next steps in Christ's mission will be… is that Jesus now has to set about carefully teaching them….Re-educating them into the RIGHT understanding of what "God's Messiah" actually means… It is NOT an earthly King… it is NOT a revolutionary who will bring war and retribution upon the Romans….. it is NOT one who is offering earthly success… in the eyes of the world…. And this goes against the common expectations and understandings of the time…. And it's going to be hard to get those mistaken concepts out of their heads. And Our Lord is wise and understanding; He knows that many will ask: "Who would want to follow someone who only promises the CROSS, suffering, failure, death!" But it is only those who believe and trust in Him, and who can trust that this path leads to the TRUTH, and to the fullness of life, who are capable of making the giant but the necessary leap of faith.
Jesus calls us to follow him and not try to lead him. St Peter tried to LEAD Jesus in today's gospel, and Our Lord quickly set him straight. Get behind me. Not in front of me. Follow me, don't try to lead me.
It is possible to believe in WHO Jesus is, but then spend all our time trying to water down his message to suit ourselves. To try to take the challenging edges off it. Jesus wants us to acknowledge the presence of the cross in our life, and in the lives of every person. Not denying the cross, not avoiding it and not pretending that life is capable of being lived without the crosses that each of us, (uniquely) must live. Our Lord didn't go looking for crosses, he embraced the crosses that came his way in fulfilment of his mission of faithfulness to the Father. To avoid them would be to thwart the ultimate victory His Father was creating.
Jesus wasn't desiring to suffer. He wasn't demanding the cross for its own sake. He wasn't welcoming difficulty in his life, any more than he would wish us to suffer - And he did go about healing people and assisting them. But being faithful to the truth of the gospel's values means burdens and suffering. Jesus knew that each person has their own cross to bear…. For each of us, there are some things that cannot be avoided without losing the things that matter most. So we are invited to live with these crosses in ways that are loving, giving, hopeful, and which shows grace and gentleness throughout. Allowing God to transform the crosses into means of life and love. To try and evade the Cross in our life is to live dishonestly. It is a hard concept to pin down…. Naturally, we are meant to do everything to heal, to help to reduce other's suffering and burdens. That truth continues to be abidingly important. But there are some burdens that if we try to avoid, it would mean selling out on very values that really matter. Or it would mean not really living fully; not being prepared to pay the price for standing up for justice, forgiveness and support for those in practical need. And for all of us, eventually, there will be one definitive cross that each of us cannot escape, at different times and in ways not of our choosing. Christ shows us the way through them to lasting victory.
Ultimately, the teaching of Jesus about the cross is actually a lesson in hope. Jesus is giving us the best message we could hope to know. No matter what happens in life, even if everything goes pear-shaped and doesn't seem to be ending well, Our Lord is calling us to put our trust in him, that the difficult journeys that we all are called to take through life, will eventually be greeted with resurrection and eternal life in Christ. And that gives us all the strength we need to endure whatever comes, following the example of Jesus.. who goes ahead of us through it all…
(references: FR. PAUL W. KELLY; 2009 – A BOOK OF GRACE-FILLED DAYS. BY ALICE CAMILLE; SHARING THE WORD THROUGH THE LITURGICAL YEAR. GUSTAVO GUTIERREZ; THE DAILY STUDY BIBLE. GOSPEL OF MARK. (REVISED EDITION). BY WILLIAM BARCLAY; St Paul Sunday Missal. 2009. Paper edition; Celebrating the Gospels. Gaynell Cronin; The Summit. Archdiocese of Melbourne. Vol 39. Number 3, Aug 2012).
(Image - Shutterstock licensed - ID:47848003 - Saint Peter - By Zvonimir Atletic).
To listen to the whole Sunday Mass each week (including homily) from Surfers Paradise Catholic Parish, please visit this link: Liturgy for you at Home (by SPCP) - https:- soundcloud.com/user-633212303/tracks
POPE FRANCIS: Pope Francis is preparing a radical reform of the church's power structures
In October, Francis is set to inaugurate a three-year synodal preparation process that has the potential to revolutionize the way decisions are made in the Catholic Church and promote a more decentralized structure of authority.
In 2001, Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio was a rapporteur for the summit of bishops at the Vatican — and he did not like what he saw.
The Catholic Church had adopted a top-to-bottom approach that stripped local churches of any decision-making power, and the synod of bishops was reduced to nothing more than a stamp of approval for prepackaged conclusions made in Rome.
When Bergoglio emerged as Pope Francis in the 2013 conclave, the synodal process was high on his list for reform.
"There was a cardinal who told us what should be discussed and what should not," Francis said about his experience at the 2001General Synod in an interview with the Argentine newspaper La Nation in 2014. "That will not happen now," he added.
On Oct. 9 and 10, Pope Francis will inaugurate a three-year preparation process for the 2023 Synod, which will focus on reforming the synodal process. The preparation process and the 2023 Synod, with the theme "For a Synodal Church: communion, participation and mission," have the potential to revolutionize the way decisions are made in the Catholic Church and promote a more decentralized structure of authority.
"If people just think about this as a meeting on meetings, they are so missing the point," said the Rev. David McCallum, executive director of the Program for Discerning Leadership of the Gregorian University in Rome and a member of the Synod Commission on Methodology, in an interview with Religion News Service.
The three-year synodal review process will take place in three phases: a local phase at the diocesan and parish level, a continental phase engaging bishops' conferences around the world and a universal phase when bishops and laypeople will convene in Rome to discuss the findings and topics developed in the first two phases. To coordinate and guide the entire process, Pope Francis created a five-member steering committee flanked by two commissions on methodology and theology.
The hierarchical structure Pope Francis eschewed at the Vatican in 2001 is currently reflected in Catholic dioceses around the globe. Throughout history "it became very natural that bishops, who were often the most educated and prepared leaders in the particular region where the church was, exercised their leadership as a mayor would," McCallum explained.
Speaking to La Nation, Francis said church governance "is in my hands, after I receive the necessary advice." Far from an authoritarian imposition, synod organizers say the role of the pope is that of guaranteeing unity, which helps distinguish synodality from a parliamentary debate.
The goal of the methodology commission in the first phase is to provide dioceses and parishes with guidelines that promote spaces for dialogue among all members of the community — lay, religious and the disaffiliated. Bishops will be asked to appoint a reference person whose job it is to facilitate and create opportunities for encounter. By instructing people on individual and communal discernment "the synod will have a formational quality to it before people enter it," McCallum said.
In Venezuela, Rafael Luciani, a full professor at the Andrés Bello Catholic University in Caracas and extraordinarius at the School of Theology and Ministry of Boston College, tackles synodality in the Latin American context.
Luciani is a lay theologian and a member of the synod's Commission for Theology. His job, ahead of the inauguration of the synodal process in Rome, is to coordinate seminars that engage the whole Latin American church. By placing a magnifying glass on local parishes, Luciani hopes to find an engaging model that can then be applied to dioceses and bishops' conferences worldwide.
Ultimately, the 2023 Synod will likely change power dynamics and relationships in the Catholic Church, but the change "has to come from local churches, not from Rome," Luciani told RNS.
Inverting the pyramidal structure of the Catholic Church may be frightening for some, proponents admit, raising concerns the Vatican will become nothing more than a bureaucratic step in the church's decision-making process or — worse still — akin to a nongovernmental organization.
Instead, the new synodal process is "a spiral," Luciani explained, where at every phase the decisions are sent from the dioceses to the episcopal conferences to Rome and then back again. "For the first time there is an interaction, it is not a linear way of proceeding," he added.
This "new ecclesial culture" is the real novelty of the synod, according to Luciani, but doubts remain in the local churches, where the "biggest question," according to Luciani, "is the question of authority."
Authority is closely tied to clericalism, a "perversion of the priesthood" as Pope Francis puts it, which also induces laypeople into believing those who have received the priestly ministry are above the fold, especially in the exercise of power. Financial corruption, immorality and sexual abuse by clergy are just a few examples of the consequences of an untouchable clergy. With synodality, Pope Francis hopes to break from a tradition that has inexorably tied power in the Catholic Church to members of the clergy.
Synodality sets out to renew the power structures that have characterized the Catholic Church for centuries, but to do so it must achieve a far more ambitious goal: teaching faithful, lay and religious, to come together in dialogue at a time when entrenchment and polarization have turned Pope Francis' "culture of encounter" into a quasi-utopian and — ironically — divisive concept.
In this effort, the synod "goes beyond Pope Paul VI's vision and Pope John Paul II's and Pope Benedict XVI's different ways of proceeding and even beyond the first synods of Pope Francis," Luciani said.
Nation-states also struggle to reconcile the differences of local realities with an increasingly centralized world. Countries such as Hungary, Poland, Brazil, Russia, the Philippines and even the United States have shifted "toward a more authoritarian way by trying to establish order as a defense against chaos and uncertainty," McCallum said.
"The church, an organization rooted in faith, needs to have a better track record than resorting to top-down authority," he added.
Members of the synod commissions are hesitant to say which structural changes will take place at the October Vatican summit. It would defeat the purpose of coming together if there wasn't "a sense of unpredictability and also of possibility," McCallum said.
Pope Francis understands the synod is more about "starting processes" than getting immediate results. Reforming seminaries is essential to promote the formation of clergy capable of overcoming differences and finding common ground, according to McCallum.
"We realize it's a generational process," he said.
While this conclusion may seem underwhelming, the synod is not the first step in this process. It builds on the Eastern Orthodox experience of the Synod of Jerusalem in 1672 and the transformations set in motion at the Second Vatican Council of 1962-1965, as well as the latest synods under the last three popes. Synodality has already worked before. "It has been the witness of bishops already that they change," Luciani said, citing examples of prelates who were transformed in their beliefs during the synods at the Vatican on Young People in 2018 and the Pan-Amazonian region in 2019.
The Latin American bishops' conference, CELAM, has a head start in its application of synodality. Before the 2007 Aparecida meeting, where the cardinal Bergoglio played a key role, the church in Latin America has engaged laypeople and local communities in lively consultations aimed at promoting shared responsibility and dialogue. Luciani, an expert adviser to CELAM, said this synodal process offers profound insight on how to "go back to a model of the church as the church of churches."
"It's not just about who makes that decision," Luciani said, "but about how we reach that decision together."
Pope Francis' gamble to act as an Ignatian spiritual director to 1.2 billion Catholics in the world — if successful — could become a countercultural statement for a new way of reaching decisions that other institutions might take note of.
Synodality "needs to demonstrate to the world that we have faith that the ultimate truth and goodness that God calls us to is not going to be established by secular power, the kind of power of unilateral control," McCallum said. "It's going to be manifest when we express our love and affection for one another with authenticity when we live with the integrity of our values and behaviours."
(Image - Shutterstock licensed Image- ID-1524254294 -Vatican City, October 6, 2019. Pope Francis -By Riccardo De Luca - Update ). (Source: September 2, 2021, By Claire Giangravé from https://religionnews.com/2021/09/02/pope-francis-is-preparing-a-radical-reform-of-the-churchs-power-structures).
The Annual Golden Wedding Anniversary Mass will be celebrated with Archbishop Mark Coleridge on Saturday 25th September commencing at 11.30 am. The invitation is extended to family and friends. Unfortunately, due to the COVID restrictions, refreshments following the Mass will not be offered. Bookings will be available from Monday 13 September and can be made via the following link: https://goldenweddinganniversarymass.eventbrite.com.au or telephone the Cathedral office on 07 3324 3030. Many thanks for your support.
Your support is needed to help our Parish continue valuable pastoral activities and to provide ongoing sustainability. To assist you to support the Parish, you can give via here.
If you are able to continue to support us, we would be most grateful. For all those who have been making payments via credit card and those who have donated directly into the parish account, we thank you. The pay-wave or tap-and-go machines on the timber stands in our Churches are also a safe and handy way to donate to the Parish. God bless you for your support. If you would like confirmation of your donation or a receipt emailed to you please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. To join planned giving, please contact the Parish Office: (07) 5572 5433 (9 am–12 pm Mon-Fri).
MASS TIMES: SURFERS PARADISE MASS TIMES
Worldwide Marriage Encounter
A weekend experience for married couples, priests and religious, away from the distractions of everyday living.
Take time out of your busy schedule, to invest in your most precious asset and revitalise your Sacrament. This is a unique opportunity to reconnect, rekindle and refresh your relationship. It gives you the opportunity to grow in your relationship with your spouse or your community. Our next COVID-SAFE live-out weekend will be held from Friday evening 15 October to Sunday afternoon 17 October (including Mass) at Trinity College, Beenleigh (south of Brisbane) – going home on the Friday and Saturday evenings. Contact Maria and David Murphy: (07) 3342 1456, email@example.com
Information website: www.wwme.org.au
Please watch a Youtube clip about Marriage Encounter by Archbishop Mark Coleridge, here. It is a powerful testimony.
SACRED HEART AND ST VINCENT'S RELIGIOUS GOODS SHOPS
Orders are now being taken for the annual 2022 Liturgical resources.
Year C 2022 Break Open the Word $12 (subsidised cost to readers) otherwise $27
All rostered readers in the Parish are expected to have their own copy of this book. As in previous years, the parish continues to subsidise Break Open the Word.
2022 Daily Mass Book $27
2022 ORDO $20
2022 God's Word $20
Please email the Parish Office with your order 'firstname.lastname@example.org'
SURFERS PARADISE CATHOLIC LADIES:
Due to the current restrictions with the wearing of masks indoors, the bingo scheduled for the 16th September will not take place.
Please check our Parish News sent by Father Paul each week for our notices. Ring Maxine Sela 0421051193 or Wendy Webb, 0412237832 to find out what will be happening in October.
THE SACRED HEART BRIDGE CLUB
Meets at the Sacred Heart - Parish Hospitality Centre, Fairway Drive, Clear Island Waters.
Playing Bridge keeps your brain active and increases your social network! So why not give us a try?
Learn to play Bridge at "Our Friendly Club" - Free Lesson. "Introduction to Bridge"
Easy to learn format, no previous card playing experience necessary. All are welcome.
For more information and to enrol, Please phone: Cheryl 5538 8821 or Mob 0417 772 701
YOGA AT THE PARISH HOSPITALITY CENTRE
Come join us for our friendly class in the Parish Hospitality Centre next to the Parish Office. Classes run every Tuesday at 10:45 am. Learn to relax, yet gain greater flexibility, inner strength, body awareness and concentration. All while increasing your breath support and general wellbeing. Ruth is an IYTA accredited instructor with wide experience and runs a caring, carefully monitored one-hour session costing $10 (new attendees need to arrive by 10.30 am to prepare adequately for class). For more information, call Ruth on 0421338110.
FAN THE FLAME PLENARY COUNCIL REFLECTION
'If anyone wants to be a follower of mine,
let him renounce himself and take up his cross and follow me.' Mark 8:27-35
There can be no shortcuts, no bypassing the cross or the tomb, to encounter the resurrection. For new life and new hope to emerge, we need to acknowledge that we are a broken, hurt and traumatised Church… by standing in solidarity and compassion with each other, particularly the wounded, the poor and the traumatised. ((Humble, Healing and Merciful – Discernment Paper pp. 12 and 18)
JOBS AROUND THE ARCHDIOCESE
Position Vacant – Booval Parish
Applications are open for a position at the Booval Parish. A person with excellent administration and secretarial skills is required for a part-time 3-year contract position of Parish Secretary for 20 hours per week, 5 hours on a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday. Closing date – 22 September 2021.
For additional information, please visit the Archdiocese of Brisbane website- https://clientapps.jobadder.com/68451/aob-internal-career-opportunities/350411
Position Vacant – Youth Ministry Coordinator. Albany Creek.
Applications are open for a position at the Albany Creek Catholic Parish. A person who is able to establish and develop a youth ministry program within the parish is required for 15 hours per week.
Application close: 30 September 2021
Position Vacant – Pastoral Associate- Sunnybank.
Applications are open for a position at the Sunnybank Parish. The Pastoral Associate will be required to coordinate children and their families preparing for the Sacraments. The applicant will also be involved in Liturgy preparation, Adult Education and Pastoral Care of Parishioners. The applicant will require recent study and practice in the Sacraments of Initiation and Theological qualifications are essential.
The position is permanent part time 28 hours per week (Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Sunday)
https://clientapps.jobadder.com/68451/aob-internal-career-opportunities/355466/pastoral-associate-sunnybank-parish. Applications close: 1 October 2021
FOR THOSE WHO ARE SICK: Sr Mary Teresa (NZ- sister of Caroline Moulden), Bert Devich, John Davis, Peter Cotton, Bobby Courtney, Lisa Mangan, Doreen Slater, Christina Hendriksen, Diane Land, Robyn Skein, Sharyn Lucas, Kye Oh, Irene Carney, Michael James, Bill Gilmore, Olga Hamshari, Roy Ferraro, Margaret Haerse, Rosalind Lee, Milka Barac, Mary Ashton, Kurt Hillesheim, Bill Goodrem, Rodney & Norma McLennan, Lois & Doug Wood, Duncan Dawson, Sam Maxwell, William Franklin, Gerry Stoffels (Capetown, SA), Maria Mihalic, Annie Scicluna, Anne Logan, Dymphna Hogg, Margaret & Louise Thompson, Patricia Moor, Helen Bohringer, Peter O'Brien, Angela Duvnjak, Rachel Raines, Savannah Ayoub, Gus Reeves, Baby Maeve Lombard, Kathy Kiely, Rosslyn Wallis, Arthur Haddad, Jean Di Benedetto, Michael & Denise Tracey, Joanne Mooney, Joanne Parkes, Michelle MacDonald, John & Molly Robinson, Mary Kerr. And all suffering from Covid-19 and its effects.
RECENTLY DECEASED: Dawn Grigson, Bruno Chiera, Jeanette Edna James, Sr Margaret Finnan, Danny Connelly, Des George, Elizabeth Grippo, Bruno Chiera, Jeanette James, Adelina Ochoa, Monica Bokeyar, Marilyn Casey, Bernice Camilleri, Noel John Ancrum, Shirley Ann Appleby, John Francis Paul, Justin King, Mark John Nussbaum.
ANNIVERSARY OF DEATH: Barry Larbalesteir, Fr Sean Nugent, Janina Momont, Mario Pase, World Trade Centre Terrorist Attack 20th Anniv (11/9/2001), Patrick Mulcahy, Briggita Kelleris, Harry Kelleris, Edna Foy, Neville John Coorey, Andre Joerg Lenz, Natalie Dundon, Joseph Patrick Condon, Leo Isidore Josephson, Jane Bird, Paul Damian Wyatt, John Maurice Quilligan, Liberata Mario (Lib) Meo, Barry Harth, Tom Killin, Keith Smith, Kazimierz Zolerowski, Lee Cross, Noeline Davies.
You can visit the Stay Connected page on our website to find an extensive list of information and resources.
Liturgy for you at Home (produced by SPP): https:- soundcloud.com/user-633212303/tracks
Weekly Homily (produced by SPP): https:- homilycatholic.blogspot.com
Surfers Paradise Parish Facebook: https:- www.facebook.com/surferscatholic/
Breaking Parish News (SPP Blog): https:- news-parish.blogspot.com/
Commitment To Child And Vulnerable Adult Safety
"The Archdiocese of Brisbane holds that children and vulnerable adults are a gift from God with an intrinsic right to dignity of life, respect and security from physical and emotional harm. They are to be treasured, nurtured and protected from any harm." As a Parish Community, we pray for a change of heart, that we respond to our grief by reaching out to one another in truth and love.
Acknowledgement of Country - This is Kombumerri Country - The Traditional Custodians of this region.
We respectfully acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the First People of this country. We pay our respects to the Kombumerri people, who are the traditional custodians of the land, waterways and seas upon which we live, work and socialise throughout this Catholic Parish of Surfers Paradise. We acknowledge Elders, past and present and emerging, as they hold the memories, traditions, culture and hopes of our Indigenous people. We pay tribute to those who have contributed in many ways to the life of the community. We affirm our commitment to justice, healing, and reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples.