|As we mentioned in last week’s Bulletin, your inputs from the Christmas Masses were submitted to the Plenary Council website: in all, we contributed 205 submissions! Thank You for adding your voice to the Plenary Council Listening and Dialogue phase.
The last Listening and Dialogue sessions for St Thomas the Apostle Parish will be held in February:
– Friday 15th February @ 7:30 pm at St. Peter’s College
– Saturday 16th February @11:00 am at Blue Hills Chapel
– Monday 25th February @ 7:30 pm at St.Peter’s College
These sessions are open to everyone. You are encouraged to bring along any friends, family members and relatives: the Spirit speaks through us all and we want everyone’s voice to be heard.
The Listening and Dialogue phase ends on Ash Wednesday, and these 3 sessions will be our final opportunity to add our voice to help create the agenda, by allowing the Spirit to guide our response to the question:
What do you think God is asking of us in Australia?
HOME SESSIONS: As we mentioned in previous bulletins, we ask all parishioners to use the opportunity of the many gatherings in this festive season to hold Listening and Dialogue sessions in your homes with friends and family. To assist you in holding sessions, please pick up a copy of the guidelines that are on the tables at the entrances.
Responses can be submitted to the Plenary Council online, using the following link, or handed in into the Parish Office. May God bless us all.
Pope Francis (Gaudete et Exsultate – The Call to Holiness- 2018)
Five Signs of Holiness:
Perseverance is a special virtue because it helps us to meet a particular need. It can be easy to do something good once or twice. But to keep on doing good, for one’s whole life, is not easy. How often have started some effort toward holiness in a burst of fervour that then quickly dies out. Perseverance is the virtue that keeps us going even when things are tough.
Joy and a sense of humour: Pope Francis brings out the examples of Mary and the saints to stress that we have every reason to be full of joy. He writes, “Christian joy is usually accompanied by a sense of humour. We see this clearly for example in St Thomas More, St Vincent de Paul and St Phillip Neri. Ill humour is no sign of holiness.”
Boldness and passion: This boldness concerns the need to evangelize, to boldly proclaim the Gospel and bring Jesus to everyone. Pope Francis reminds us, “Look at Jesus. His deep compassion reached out to others. It did not make him hesitant, timid or self-conscious, as so often happens with us.
The importance of community: As Christians we are not isolated but part of the community of the whole Church, as well as the particular communities we belong to. This communitarian aspect is essential to us on our journey to holiness, for no one can go it alone. Pope Francis says, “The common life, whether in the family, or the parish is made up of small everyday things. This was true of the holy community formed by Jesus, Mary & Joseph, which reflected in an exemplary way the beauty of the Trinity. It is also true of the life that Jesus shared with his disciples and with ordinary people.”
Constant Prayer: This is essential, for prayer is our lifeline to God. Pope Francis says, “I do not believe in holiness without prayer, even though the prayer need not be lengthy or involve intense emotions.” Prayer transforms us into better disciples of Jesus.
WELCOME FR TONY who will be celebrating our weekend Masses while Fr Denis is away.
CATECHISTS REQUIRED: As our parish grows so does our need for catechists for primary school aged children. I am inviting parishioners to respond to our need by contacting the parish office.
DEACON AVINASH – Please continue to pray for Deacon Avinash George as he prepares for his Priestly Ordination on Saturday 5th January at his home parish of Mampoyil, in northern Kerala, India. Also, please pray that God will bless us with more vocations to the priesthood, especially from our own parish.
SUMMER SCHOOL OF EVANGELISATION – will be from 20-27 January 2019 in Kyneton. This event is run by the Disciples of Jesus Covenant Community. All young people aged 16-35 are encouraged to attend a week-long retreat of teaching, live music, Sacraments, prayer, praise and great speakers. We are also seeking sponsors for participants and will appreciate any contribution. The cost is $550 per participant. For more information, please visit email@example.com or summerschool.org.au or 0467 092 091.
PIETY STALL – Holy Beginnings piety stall opens every 2nd weekend of the month. Month of January is on the 12th & 13th. For orders and enquiries, call Rick & Anita on 0450 782 558.
FORMED.org is an online platform featuring the best Catholic videos, audio talks, eBooks and movies from trusted partners like the Augustine Institute, St. Paul Center, Marian Fathers, Lighthouse Catholic Media, Ignatius Press and Word on Fire. Catechism and Personal Faith Formation are at the fingertips of every parishioner. St Thomas the Apostle parishioners are very privilege to have free access to this. To get the parish code contact Parish Office: 5998 0947 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.