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Staying positive in challenging times


These are not the words I would like to be writing this month; they will have to wait for another time. Needless to say, these are difficult days, but there is much to be positive about in our Archdiocese.

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We have experienced the sad but beautiful passing of Archbishop Leonard Faulkner to eternal life. His funeral was an occasion for us to celebrate not only his life but the strength of our Catholic faith and the richness of our liturgical traditions. In the inimitable words of radio personality and columnist Peter Goers, it was a ‘remarkable event’.

The annual Marian Procession on Pentecost Sunday was another wonderful celebration – in honour of Our Lady – and a shining example of our vibrant and multicultural Catholic community.

The procession coincided with the announcement that Adelaide is to be the venue for the historic first Plenary Council gathering in October 2020. This will bring together hundreds of Catholic leaders and many more support people as the national Church contemplates its future. While there are geographical factors in the location choice, the decision to hold it in Adelaide is also testament to the expertise of the Archdiocese in staging major events such as the Australian Catholic Youth Festival in 2015.

Another important achievement for the Archdiocese was the recent pilot audit of our safeguarding policies and procedures by the new national body Catholic Professional Standards Limited. As our page 3 story explains, it was the Child Protection Unit’s ground-breaking work in this area that resulted in Adelaide being chosen for the pilot, which will assist the CPSL in the development of national standards. The safety of children and providing support to the survivors of child sexual abuse continue to be a priority for the Archdiocese.

On May 27 two young Adelaide seminarians received the ministry of acolyte, an important step in their journey to the priesthood and a great blessing for our diocese.

The renewal of our parishes and communities continues to move forward with more visitations planned for the second half of the year and discussions continuing with school personnel and other groups. The process of renewal will be closely aligned to the preparations for the Plenary 2020 as it involves listening to all voices with an open heart.

In addition to these major developments in the life of the Australian and local Church, there are also the ordinary but extraordinary, day-to-day good works being undertaken by individuals in our parishes, schools, charitable organisations and community service agencies.

There are big challenges ahead, but we face them with the knowledge that we have a strong foundation built on God’s command to love one another.


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