Building Communities of Faith in Plumpton
On Thursday night (19th April) we gathered with the parishioners of Good Shepherd Parish at Plumpton for our tenth consultation of the year! Thank you to all participants for their warm welcome, overwhelming hospitality and enthusiasm toward the Diocesan Pastoral Plan.
Parishioners were eager to engage with the overview of the Diocese, commenting particularly on the potential of the Diocese given the youthfulness of Parramatta Catholics, the vitality of many parishes including at Plumpton and the availability of the Catholic school system.
The presence and energy of faith and life groups such as the Legion of Mary was noted, as well as the rich experience of ethnic and cultural diversity at Good Shepherd Parish which reflects to a great degree the vibrancy of the wider Diocese. The need to foster the integration of these diverse groups was raised as an ongoing challenge, with personal exchange being affirmed as critical to a shared sense of community and a unified mission. It was noted that many opportunities for strengthening spiritual and social bonds already exist within parish communities, and could be shared through the Diocesan Pastoral Plan as it engages the shared wisdom of the many communities consulted throughout the year.
The need to communicate better about existing programs and services was another focal point of conversation, with participants pinpointing the role of parish priests in this effort at weekend liturgies as well as more deliberate and structured promotion of events at a parish level. The importance of welcoming and a spirit of hospitality were identified as key to community growth and engagement, as was the need for prayer and reflection beyond the liturgy, in home groups and small communities of spiritual support and enrichment.
Thank you to all those who joined us, for your time and commitment to our Diocesan Pastoral Plan. Our thanks also goes to the hospitality and parish team for making the evening such a warm and vibrant gathering. Please keep in touch with us as the consultations continue. We look forward to our next consultation at Our Lady of the Rosary Parish, St Marys, on the3rd May!
Yours in Christ, Daniel