The first Assembly of the Fifth Plenary Council was also delayed; however, in October 2021 representatives were able to gather online in prayer and discernment. The Pope convoked the Sixteenth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops (Synod on Synodality) in October 2021: “For the first time in the history of the Church, this synod will invite all 1.37 billion Catholics to take part in the process of listening and discernment. The aim of this ‘journeying together’, the literal meaning of Synodality, is to bring Catholics closer to the mission of Jesus. In this ‘way of being church’ the whole People of God come closer together on the journey of bringing alive the Kingdom of God on Earth.”
Our Diocese and our nation have already begun the listening and discerning process at a grassroots level. While no major decisions can be made at a Diocesan level regarding the Synod until a new Bishop is appointed, we can still walk and journey together, listen and learn from one another.
As part of our continued synodal journey, we also encountered Christ within each other through the Advent mystagogical reflection process. Stories of faith and life experiences were heard in the ‘Churches without Walls’ series, highlighting how our local People of God are working towards building the Kingdom of God. Continuing our synodal journey, you are invited to come together in parishes, schools and across the Diocese, both face-to-face and online, to remain connected during the season of Lent. This resource provides the opportunity to encounter scripture and our synodal themes through the process of mystagogical reflection. As you encounter the mystery of God in the scripture, this may lead you to discover the mystery of God in one another through sharing of life and experience. This Lent as we encounter the Paschal Mystery, you are invited to sit with the scripture and the themes revealed through our synodal process. We encourage you to watch the reflections of the scripture and the ‘Church Without Walls’ series and reflect on how we, as people of the resurrection, can put our faith into action.
To access the resources, visit: https://www.mn.catholic.org.au/church-mission/catholic-life/liturgy/lent-2022/
The Diocese will be hosting Mystagogical Reflections each week during Lent, Monday mornings at 10.30am and Thursday evenings at 6.30pm.
To register, visit: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/o/diocese-of-maitland-newcastle-18080128129