( No Mass on Easter Sunday Evening)
0-05-2020—Fifth Sunday of Easter
Before joining the faith community here at Holy Family Parish, I had been in Rome studying a licence (something like a Masters degree) in Spiritual Theology, specialising in vocational formation, especially the formation of future priests. It is an important area of study as the task of forming future priest is of fundamental importance for the future of our church. I must admit that I missed a trick in last week’s reflection, and failed to mention that last Sunday was “Good Shepherd Sunday” and therefore a special time of prayer for vocations to the priesthood. Happily, this weekend’s second reading provides a theme around priesthood, though with a twist! But before that, I encourage you to pray for vocations to the ministerial priesthood, without which the sacraments would be impossible. In this time of Covid-19, where many are sorely missing the opportunity to participate in the sacramental life of the Church, we are provided with a taste of what the future holds, unless young men step forward, and are encouraged to step forward, and follow Christ in His ministry of shepherding the flock. But now for the twist! In the second reading the priesthood that St Paul refers to is not the ministerial priesthood, rather it tis the priesthood of the baptised! No doubt many of you have heard of this idea before, but perhaps some have not. All of us, by virtue of baptism, exercise a fundamental priest-hood. Thus, St Paul can proclaim to the whole Church that they are “a holy priest-hood that offers the spiritual sacrifices which Jesus Christ has made acceptable to God”. This is not the ministerial priesthood, that presides at the sacraments, but rather the priesthood of all believers, whose very faith and lives are the acceptable sacrifice offered through Christ to the Father! Space and time do not permit a fuller expounding of this reality today, however, it is a theme very dear to my heart- and something that features in my thesis (which I am scrambling to finish in the next 10 day! – so please pray for me.) But it suffices to say, I believe that the best way to facilitate an increase in vocations to the ministerial priesthood, is to bring about a growth in the understanding and living out of this fundamental priesthood, which is the vocation of all the faithful. So, let us pray for an increase in priestly vocations – firstly for the vocation to the ministerial priesthood! Lord send us priest, send us many priests, send us many holy priests. But secondly- lets pray that all of us may understand and live the calling which is far more fundamental and important in the life of the Church, the call we all share, to be the priestly people of God. God bless, Fr. Michael Grace .
THE REFORMATION TODAY: AN ECUMENICAL PERSPECTIVE
2017 marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Many historians consider the Reformation one of those epoch changing events in the history of the Western world. But what does it mean for people in Australia 500 years later? Was the Reformation just a series of pointless disputes which have little relevance to the church today? Or is the church today the living legacy of the Reformation, and if so, what does this mean for us? Join us as we ask these questions together.
Dr. Chris Hanlon — The Reformation a Catholic perspective, 8 August 7:30pm Holy Family Catholic Church, Indooroopilly