page loader



Dear Friends in Christ,

For our Church, the new year does not begin on January 1st, but on the first Sunday of Advent. What do we hope for? And what do we promise ourselves to be and to do in this coming year?

At the end of last year, I invited everyone to watch and pray as the Pope’s Synod in Rome began to unfold. It has now had its first assembly; and invites the whole Church to reflect on the ideas that have come from that, as we prepare for the concluding session late in 2024.

We will attempt to pick up this developing work in our local church; and so revive the way of walking together (“synodality”) that we began in 2013, until Covid slowed us down for a while.

The themes for the Synod in Rome are ours, too: Participation; Communion; and Mission. They are interrelated, of course: but without participation, it’s hard to get started on communion and mission! As I wrote last year:

One of the struggles of our synodal journey so far…is that an ever-smaller number of people are shouldering the responsibilities that everyone should be sharing. Even the basic obligations of joining the parish community for Sunday Mass and supporting the parish financially are being neglected. And not enough people are ready, when able, to give time and talent for our works of Word, Worship and Service. Those happy few who do, cheerfully and generously, are already blessed and we thank God for them.

Finally, as we get ready to celebrate Christmas this year, our heartfelt prayers are for the suffering people, Jewish, Christian and Muslim, of the land where Jesus was born. May his justice bring forth his peace!


+Michael McKenna
Bishop of Bathurst