Church Renewal

Reimagining the Church - mission and structure

The Archdiocese of Melbourne is undergoing its own reform in relation to the mission and structure of parishes in the Archdiocese. Archbishop Peter Comensoli has met with both parish clergy and lay leaders to open up the idea of a new missionary thrust, calling for parishes to collaborate more closely in order to build vibrant and viable centres of Catholic life and faith. Archbishop Comensoli has issued an invitation to all parishes to join in the conversation as to how we can discern our common mission for the years ahead.   Further information on the process is available from Melbourne Catholic.

The accompanying image is of See Through Church in Borgloon, Belgium

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Begin the journey

Parish communities are invited to enter into a period of discernment and discussion about reimagining our local Church as mission communities.  Visit the Archdiocesan website for resources and to participate in any of the planned activities:

  • Regional Gatherings are taking place in early August for local communities to come together to discuss how we might respond to this missionary call.
  • Together we Pray is an invitation to pray for our Archdiocese during this time of discernment, and call on the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us.  Join weekly online prayer via Zoom.
  • Beginning the Journey workshop is an opportunity to ponder how each of us is being called by the Holy Spirit into a renewed way of belonging in our local Church.  Register to participate on Zoom.

Changes to governance of diocese and parishes

At the same time, the Australian Catholic Bishops commissioned the report, The Light from the Southern Cross: Promoting Co-Responsible Governance in the Catholic Church in Australia, following a recommendation of the Royal Commission into Institutional Response to Child Sexual Abuse. The report is set to be a major backdrop for deliberations on Church reform in Australia at the now 2021 Plenary Council.

In response to this report the Australian Bishops recently set three priorities for the work of the conference: formation, becoming more missionary and fostering collegiality.  The press release contains further details around these priorities. The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, is headed by Archbishop Mark Coleridge of Brisbane.