The Good News of Jesus Christ is for all times, all people and all places. The Holy Spirit, however, is always opening up new ways of expressing this timeless message in different generations and in different contexts. This week we share some stories to help us think about how the transforming power of the Gospel might continue to be unleashed, not just in our own lives, but in a world yearning for meaning and purpose.
This year Catholic Theological College celebrates 50 years of helping to educate and form not only our seminarians and religious, but also a growing number of lay people. Recently, at the College’s annual Knox Public Lecture, a panel discussed the topic ‘50 Years of Theological Education in Context: Then, Now, What Next?’ A common theme of the discussion was the hope that theological formation and biblical education might be made more accessible to ordinary people. As one panelist said, ‘The message really needs to go out more that everyone is invited, everyone can come and see how theological study can nurture one’s faith and relationship with God.’
Last Friday was the Day of Prayer for Anglican–Roman Catholic Reconciliation—a day of special significance this year as the Anglican and Catholic dioceses of Melbourne both celebrate their 175th anniversaries. As part of these celebrations, Archbishop Peter A Comensoli recently joined the Archbishop of Canterbury, His Grace Justin Welby, at St Paul’s Anglican Cathedral for a special service of ‘Evensong'. In his sermon, Archbishop Welby reflected on the adventurous early days of the Church in Melbourne, and also looked hopefully to the future, reminding us that when we put our whole trust not in human achievement but in ‘the God who is worthy of thanks’, real Christian unity and true transformation become possible.
In this spirit of ecumenism, and to mark Archbishop Welby's recent visit, we have also put together a short list of Christian ‘classics‘ by Anglican authors to enrich your Catholic faith.
Social media offers new and powerful opportunities to reach people with the story of God’s love. At a recent conference, Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle called social media ‘a blessing in the world’, but also encouraged us to think carefully about its formative influence on our lives—and especially on the lives of young people. We look at what Cardinal Tagle had to say, not just about how we might share the Gospel with social media, but how the world of social media itself might be transformed in light of the Good News of Christ.
Finally, as we prepare for Red Wednesday later this month, we are reminded that perhaps one of the greatest obstacles to the Church’s mission is the persecution faced by Christians in many places. We hear about the different ways Red Wednesday will be celebrated around the world this year, including at our own St Patrick's Cathedral, which will be lit red for a special Red Wednesday Prayer Vigil on 23 November.
May you experience the joy of the Gospel in your life this week, and may you discover new and surprising ways to share it with others.