Archbishop John Dew
The last weekend in August will be an important weekend in the life of the archdiocese. We host our first Stewardship Institute in the hope and the prayer that this will make a big impact on the way we live the gospel, on the way we make conscious choices every day to live the life of a disciple.
I was privileged to be a member of the Synod for Oceania in Rome in 1998. I remember when the theme for the synod was announced thinking that in some way the words of the gospel were applying in some special way to the people of Oceania.
The theme was ‘Jesus Christ and the Peoples of Oceania – walking his way, telling his truth, living his life’. These words continue to challenge us and stewardship will enable us to be more intentional about choosing every day to walk his way, tell his truth and live his life.
The institute at the end of this month will be important, not just for the life of the diocese, but for us as individuals who are called by name through our baptism to be disciples of Jesus and therefore to be an active Catholic community.
This means that we are called to be an inclusive and respectful community, to be people who care for and love those in need. We acknowledge too that we are part of a wider community called to work cooperatively with all people for the good of society.
A day for prayer
Because of all this we are not just going straight into the working days of the Stewardship Institute. I have invited people of the archdiocese to come to the cathedral during the day on Friday 26.
Not all will be able to come – most will be at working – but for those who are able to come this will be a day of prayer and a day to learn more about various aspects of prayer. We could spend the days at the institute making plans for the future, organising, arranging and making decisions about what we will do in pastoral areas. But, unless that begins in prayer, it will remain as organising, arranging and planning.
The PrayLive day is a day for personal prayer, to give thanks to God for all the gifts we are blessed with, to reflect on our own discipleship and how ‘I’ am responding to my baptismal call.
Our personal and our community lives are founded on prayer. As the psalmist says, ‘Unless the Lord builds the house, in vain do the builders labour’. (Psalm 127:1) or as St Mary MacKillop once said, ‘All depends on prayer. Begin and end with it’.
The title of the day is PrayLive, reminding us of the fact that we cannot live without praying, urging us to live our prayer – not just to babble as the pagans do [Mt6:7].
PrayLive calls us to live as disciples and reminds us that our discipleship response is nourished from the strength we draw from praying the Eucharist and the scriptures and participating prayerfully in the sacraments.
Welcome to the cathedral on August 26 for as short or long a time as you like. As well as time for personal prayer and reflection, there will be five different inputs on prayer throughout the day. All are welcome.
Come and give thanks to God for graces and blessings received, come and pray for the success of the institute.