Diocesan Assembly 2017

Our 2017 Diocesan Assembly was held in Bathurst at the end of October and was attended by the Bishop, appointed Diocesan Pastoral Council (DPC) members, deacons, seminarians and Chairs of our various Diocesan councils. The Assembly gave all those is attendance the opportunity to share experiences, ideas and hopes for our wider Diocesan community.  

The Assmebly was facilitated by Mr Daniel Ang, Director of Evangelisation for the Diocese of Broken Bay. Daniel was with us for the 2016 Assembly working with participants on ‘our task as missionary disciples’. Daniel provided practical and useful guidance during this formation time.

There was a buoyant atmosphere at the Assembly, created by the positivity and optimisim of those present. This was further encouraged by the wonderful music provided by Seminarian Karl Sinclair who performed contempory hymns that provided the ideal setting.

Delegates listened to reports on what’s happening in the Diocese in various areas, including Catholic Schools Youth Ministry Australia, the Ministry Formation Program and the Diocesan Youth Plan.

Each working group has met a number of times during the past 12 months, developing and delivering objectives to the Diocese. Through their work during the year, each of the workgroups presented one specific and practical proposal on which it would like to focus in the coming year. There were opportunities for individual groups to express thoughts around the proposals, ensuring everyone had the opportunity tho share their thoughts with the wider group.

Deacon Josh Clayton said "The Assembly offered a chance for people who are alive in the spirit and eager to see renewal in our church come together and express their hopes and dreams for our Diocese and our parishes".

"With our church being at a crossroads, the gathering offered an opportunity for all members of the DPC to reflect on the meaning of who we are as a community of followers of Jesus Christ, and the call that he has for each of us to go out to the margins and help others experience the love and hope that comes from knowing Jesus Christ", said Josh.  

Sr Alice Sullivan rsj, Executive Secretary of the DPC said, "The annual Assembly expresses the hope and the passion that so many people in our parishes have for our communities, wishing them to continue to grow and to find new ways of engaging with others about the message of Jesus and the joy that comes from knowing him. While the Diocesan Assembly won't solve all the problems of the church, it does give committed Catholics an opportunity for their voice to be heard and to learn more about how they can take up their role as disciples of Christ, willing to work for the building up of God's kingdom in this place and time".

During the Assembly, the delegates attended the Parish Mass in the Cathedral at 10.00am on Sunday 29th October and were presented by an icon of "Our Lady of the Central West" as a token of thanks for the ongoing efforts of the DPC members.

Bishop McKenna said he was very happy with the outcomes of the Assembly and looks forward to working with all the groups over the coming months to deliver many of the initiatives discussed over the two days.

More photos from the 2017 Diocesan Pastoral Council Assembly can be viewed HERE>

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