Dear parishioners, visitors and friends,
This Wednesday we celebrate Ash Wednesday, the start of the season of Lent, in preparation for the celebration of the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus.
In the early Church, public sinners were invited to perform public penance with prayer, fasting and acts of charity so that on Holy Thursday they were welcomed back into the community. The community journeyed with these sinners supporting them with fasting and prayer.
Over the past number of years, especially these last five years as the Royal Commission did its work, as a Church community in Australia we have been exposed to the most devastating stories of a large number of people who have suffered sexual abuse at the hand of priests, religious and lay people; those who had the duty to respect and protect our vulnerable children.
Lent is another opportunity for us as a Catholic community to pray in support of all victims of sex abuse, and their families. As we meditate on the sufferings of Jesus, we associate with the pain endured by these brothers and sisters. We pray in hope that God may help these victims of sex abuse find within themselves a space of healing.
Some laws have already been passed and both as Church and as parish community we are becoming more aware of the need to protect those who are vulnerable in our community. Perhaps one the ‘acts of charity’ that we can perform this Lent is to offer both support to victims of abuse, and also to continue discovering how better to offer protection to children and vulnerable adults in our midst.
Thank you, Fr Jude
To make this Lent a more meaningful time, consider taking part in any of the following available at our Parish:
Ash Wednesday: Wed 06 Mar Mass with distribution of ashes at 9:00am at the Paulist Centre with St James Primary, 12:45pm at St Clare’s Primary and 7:30pm in the Church.
The Way of the Cross: During Lent, time to reflect on the Stations of the Cross will be every Friday from this Fri 08 Mar at 7:30pm in the Church.
Project Compassion: Project Compassion promotes peace by pursuing justice. Please take home a Project Compassion box and/or a set of envelopes available in the Narthex this weekend and return by Holy Thursday.
Paulist Missionary Sponsorship: For $5 per month, you can help with the wellbeing and education of children in Pakistan, Peru and the Philippines. Brochures available this weekend.