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Milestone for Plenary Council


The journey to the historic Fifth Plenary Council of Australia has reached a significant milestone with the release of the instrumentum laboris (working document).

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President of the Plenary Council, Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB, said the document drew heavily on the voices of more than 220,000 people who participated in the Listening and Dialogue and Listening and Discernment phases of the Council, as well as from other key sources.

Entitled Continuing the Journey, the document “seeks to offer an account of what the People of God have expressed as an invitation for ongoing discernment”, and will help create the agenda for the assemblies.

The first assembly of the Plenary Council will take place in October with a combination of online and face-to-face participation. It was originally planned to be held in Adelaide last October but was postponed due to COVID.

Some of the themes identified in the instrumentum laboris include renewing a Christ-centred Church that heals wounds and warms hearts; the call to co-responsibility in mission and governance; renewing and supporting the ordained ministry; promoting discipleship in parishes, families and young people; renewing the Church’s solidarity with First Australians and those on the margins of society, and promoting an integral ecology of life for all.

Plenary Council facilitator Lana Turvey-Collins said a reflection guide has been developed to help people throughout the country engage with Continuing the Journey.

“In this particular time of changing norms in society and the emerging reality of post-COVID life, it is increasingly important to have as many faith communities, groups, agencies and individuals participate in this continued discernment as possible,” she said.

“Every single person is needed for God’s mission today.”


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