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We welcome Pope Francis!



It is with great joy that the Diocese of Parramatta receives the news of the election of Pope Francis as the 266th Bishop of Rome. Bishop Anthony Fisher OP shared his delight and asked the people of Parramatta to pray for the newly elected pontiff:

 Habemus papam - we have a Pope! The Church in Parramatta cheers with the rest of humanity at the happy news. He is a deeply spiritual man who is highly respected as a theologian and an intellectual. He is a humble man and a great defender of the poor. In his first words as Pope, Pope Francis spoke of building fraternity, love and trust. Please offer your Masses and prayers for Pope Francis, today and in the days ahead.”

Pope Francis chose his papal name in memory of St Francis of Assisi (1182-1226), known throughout the generations as a man of peace, a champion of the poor, steward of creation and inspiration for Christian reconciliation. The life of this twelfth-century mendicant friar provides a fitting backdrop for the elevation of the Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Jorge Mario Bergoglio, to the Petrine Office. This ‘new’ Francis in our midst fills the Diocese of Parramatta with hope, for the renewal that the Church has undergone in every age.

Much closer to home, we hope and pray that our Diocesan Pastoral Plan will also be a source of renewal so that the Gospel we have received finds a true home in our families, parishes and vocations. There is a bright future for faith in our Diocese.

The then-Archbishop Bergoglio underlined the significance of our faith as something that is to be shared, remarking recently on the Year of Faith inaugurated by his predecessor:

“Benedict XVI has insisted on the renewal of faith being a priority and presents faith as a gift that must be passed on, a gift to be offered to others and to be shared as a gratuitous act. It is not a possession, but a mission. This priority indicated by the Pope has a commemorative purpose: through the Year of Faith we remember the gift we have received. And there are three pillars to this: the memory of having been chosen, the memory of the promise that was made to us and the alliance that God has forged with us. We are called to renew this alliance, our belonging to the community of God’s faithful.”

We pray and hope that our Diocesan Pastoral Plan will bring a renewed awareness and commitment to our faith as a living gift, as the life of Jesus Christ being received and passed on from one generation to the next.

We pray in gratitude and in hope for our new Pope Francis and for our Church!

Yours in Christ,

 Daniel Ang

Posted by Daniel Ang at 4:23 PM

Tags: Blog   March   Daniel Ang

Comments & Responses

I'm sure Pope Francis will be in agreeance with the ideals of renewed awareness and committment to our Faith being passed on from one generation to the next. That requires equality, help and understanding being shown to all children in our Catholic Schools, including our children with disabilities. All our children should have the right of a Christian education. Hopefully, Pope Francis will address these areas of concern in our system so that all Catholic children will have the same rights to be educated in an atmosphere of Christian values and ideals. In turn they will have the opportunity to pass their faith down to the next generation.
Posted by: Terri Casey on 15/03/2013 11:57:16 PM(Reply)
Thank you for your comments Terri! I wholeheartedly agree and trust that Pope Francis will continue the emphasis on faith inaugurated by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in the Year of Faith.

For our own part in Parramatta, we are conscious of the need to respond as a diocese and as parishes to the gifts and needs of those with a disability, especially children, and the important of Christian education in the passing on of the faith we have received.

You might be interested in the review taking place this year within the Parramatta Catholic school system to examine and ensure present curriculum and supporting materials are up-to-date. Bishop Anthony has shared his hope that "this review will assist us in evangelising and catechising smarter, better, deeper, so that the encounter with Christ may shape the hearts and the truths of the Gospel illuminate the minds of our young people to an even greater degree. It’s not just a side-project but a thorough examination of one of the most important things we do and I pray God will help us get it right"

You can read the full text here:

With thanks for your thoughtful comments and richest blessings, Daniel Ang
Posted by: Daniel Ang on 19/03/2013 1:11:38 PM(Reply)

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