Year of Prayer and Advent

DIOCESAN YEAR OF PRAYER Having focussed in the past 12 months on ‘Mission’, the diocese now turns to the well-spring that gives us the energy and vision for Mission – to utter necessity of Prayer. Luke’s Gospel gives us particular insights into Jesus as the Man of Prayer, constantly turning to His Father, finding quiet spaces on hillsides (often in the dark hours of night) during which He would pray, enter afresh into His Divine Communion with Abba, Father through the bond of love that is the Holy Spirit within Him and between Him and the Father. He is our model of Prayer – a prayer that that drives us (inspires us) to action (mission) a prayer that is shaped by that action/mission! Let us deepen our prayer, our contemplative union with Father, Son and Holy Spirit this coming year.

ADVENT – THE VISION OF MISSION Advent is a time for ‘people with far-seeing eyes’ – awakened to the reality of our world, ready to listen and to gaze: in order to recognise where, when and how Jesus comes in the 21st century (in the poverty, among the oppressed, disguised as an addict or as homeless, crying out for acceptance and freedom in the asylum-seeker, yearning for peace among the women and children who are the greatest victims of our wars). But you have to have courage to see and to hear – and more courage to speak and to act! The Spirit of God unfolds a vision of Mission – to transform the deserts and wastelands of our world into places of hope, rich and fertile in humanity and justice, healing and freedom. Our Mission is world-challenging and world-changing. Let our worship empower our mission, as we gaze upon bread from the fields and wine from the hills being transformed utterly in Christ by the Spirit and the Word through the ministry of the Church!

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