One of the things the Council has been focused on for some years is mentoring new and younger people into liturgical ministry, particularly diocesan liturgical ministry which has its own unique focus and character. Please interpret ‘younger’ broadly. Anyone younger than me is young!
This is a critical need, not just here, but across the country. It is a recurring item on the agenda of the National Liturgical Council. Most – not all – of us are of an ‘age’ shall I say when our ‘used by date’ is fast approaching.
This local Church of ours has been blessed with a long story of a rich liturgical life that has been nurtured by very gifted liturgists. I am thinking in particular of our Clare Tobin rsj and Fr. John Woods. I remember when I was young and discovered to my surprise that I had a capacity and gift for liturgy, that both those people nurtured and encouraged me. They stood beside me as I picked up various aspects of liturgical ministry, offering guidance and encouragement. I learnt so much from them. That they, and others did this, not just for me but for many of us has enabled our local Church to continue to grow our rich Catholic liturgical heritage. I am not exaggerating when I say that many other ‘country’ dioceses across the country envy the liturgical tradition, life and opportunities we have.
The Diocesan Liturgy Council (DLC) and I have been entrusted with the stewardship of this rich legacy. It is now our turn to engage with and mentor those who have the gifts and capacities for this ministry and feel a call to new ways of participation.
Diocesan Liturgy Council
If you love liturgy and know you have a liturgical capacity and skill set that you are interested in developing, if you are open to growing your liturgical understanding, if you feel a call to serve our local Church of Maitland-Newcastle in this way, then I invite you to consider this invitation and complete the Expression of Interest Form. The accompanying letter gives you more information. You may also like to read the Diocesan Liturgy Council Statutes.
Praying to eradicate Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery
The second opportunity is focused on this issue.
The feast of St. Josephine Bakhita on 8 February has become the focus of the Church’s prayer and reflection on the need to eradicate violence and injustice, particularly as it manifests itself in modern slavery and Human trafficking.
The Diocesan Liturgy Council is seeking to establish the St Josephine Bakhita Working Party to explore ways we can highlight and celebrate this feast. We are looking for Expressions of Interest from people who have the appropriate gifts and skills, and feel called to this area of liturgical ministry. For more information about the Working Party please read the mandate. If you are interested in being a member, please read the accompanying letter and complete the Expression of Interest form.
The closing date for Expressions of Interest for both the Council and Working Party is Sunday 18 July.
We are looking forward to being inundated with interest for both groups. The Diocesan Liturgy Council will review all Expressions of Interest. For the Council it will discern those who have the gifts needed to complement existing DLC members. In the case of the Working Party, it will discern those who together will form a representative group whose gifts and skills complement each other and will enable the Working Party to fulfill its task.
Members will be appointed by the DLC via a letter. Everyone who expresses interest will receive a response.
Please don’t leave this to the ubiquitous ‘someone else’. You might be exactly who God needs and wants in this space. I invite you to listen and discern and act!
Acting might mean drawing someone else’s attention to these opportunities. Personal invitation is always best. So, if you are thinking, ‘I know just the person’ then catch up with them and encourage them to act.
I am excited by these opportunities and trust the Holy spirit is flapping around and will nudge people to respond.
Image: © Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle. All rights reserved.