The instruction titled, ‘The pastoral conversion of the Parish community in the service of the evangelising mission of the Church’ places evangelisation at the centre of a parishes purpose.
Evangelisation through the Eucharist is a central theme in the document encouraging parish communities to move away from a self serving ministry which engage only a small group to a relational model where the poor are placed at the centre of our communities. The instruction is challenging the body of Christ to look outwards into our communities and bring the message and person of Jesus Christ to others – not keep Him for ourselves!
Building communities for mission will be central to our church over the coming decades as we recognise the changing nature in our own diocese. A decreasing number of priests has prompted prayer to discern the will of God as we prepare for the next phase of the Church of Jesus Christ.
Within this new instruction, a change of culture is recognised as younger Catholics do not attend the Church which is geographically suitable but where they are fed or feel most welcomed. The parish boundaries, although importantly defined by a bishop, are not restrictions on attendance of a specific parish. In younger ages groups particularly, boundaries are not even recognised as a distinguishable feature of their faith life.
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