Last week I wrote about our honouring Fr Richard Shortall SJ, our Missionary of Mercy, at a farewell. I am now at my desk, having spent the afternoon with about eighty people who gathered to say thank you and to bid him a fond goodbye. We all had a lovely time of story-telling and sharing the wonderful moments of mercy, community and healing, experiences that will live on beyond Fr Richard’s time with us. What a grace and blessing the Year of Mercy and the Missionary of Mercy have been, and will continue to be for us!
One of the difficulties we have as Christian people living in a scientific and technological age is that we receive a vast amount of information through sources such as newspapers, magazines and television which are able to support this information with pictures and videos of the facts as they actually happen.
I hope that, by now, you are aware that our Missionary of Mercy, Fr Richard Shortall SJ, is finishing his mission with us and to us on Sunday 12 November. I also hope that you have received Bishop Bill’s invitation to his farewell, either by a notice in your church foyer, a bulletin notice or via our Dio Update. His farewell will take place this coming Sunday, 12 November, at St Joseph’s College, Lochinvar, commencing at 2.30pm, with a ritual and afternoon tea. All are welcome and I hope to see you there.
In an expanded “Frankly Spoken”, parish priest of Nelson Bay, Fr Kevin Corrigan, offers an overview of the words of Pope Francis as the deadline for the same-sex marriage plebiscite approaches.
I find this week each year to be an interesting one because we celebrate All Saints Day, then All Souls Day, and after that we begin our remembrance of the Holy Souls during the month of November. What continues to fascinate me are the events and costumes surrounding Halloween, on the eve of All Hallows Day, All Saints Day. I can’t imagine that I will ever think this to be a ‘normal’ part of our lives, here in Australia.
This week I begin my message with a quote I came across and read at the Two Bishop’s Dialogue a couple of weeks ago. The topic for this dialogue was Morals, Ethics and Decision Making.