I have a dream … that the People of God across the diocese, from every parish and school and agency and community will stream to the Sacred Heart Cathedral on the afternoon of the first Sunday of Lent to welcome all the catechumens who will be baptised in their parishes at the Easter Vigil. [A catechumen is an unbaptised person whose search for meaning has brought them to the Catholic Church]
I have a dream … that the Rite of Election will become one of the wonderful liturgies of our diocese, like the Chrism Mass and the Called to Serve Mass. [The Rite of Election is the ritual at which those who have decided to be baptised gather to meet the Bishop and sign up for baptism]
I have a dream … that when the catechumens go up to the sanctuary to be presented to Bishop Bill, they will look out on a Cathedral full of people who have come to witness this wonderful moment and who will cheer and clap and offer their support and their prayer.
I have a dream … that the People of God, regardless of whether or not they have catechumens in their parish, would want to be at the Rite of Election because their hearts are lifted and their spirits renewed by witnessing people who in this day and age choose to become Catholic.
I have a dream … that everyone would stay for afternoon tea and engage in conversation with the catechumens, their sponsors and the members of parish RCIA Teams.
I have a dream … that the People of God go home from the Rite of Election reenergised and committed to strengthening or starting RCIA in their parish.
I have a dream … that all the People of God understand that the RCIA journey is primarily about the catechumens deepening their relationship with God and being accompanied by the whole parish community as they learn to live the Catholic way.
I have a dream … that I will see you at the Rite of Election on Sunday March 10, at 2.30pm at the Sacred Heart Cathedral, 841 Hunter Street, Newcastle West.
I have a dream … that huge numbers of people will RSVP to Sharon (4979 1134 firstname.lastname@example.org ) by Friday March 1.
My dream was reignited at the National RCIA conference last October when I listened to the stories of people who had recently participated in the RCIA. I invite you to listen to some of those stories now.