ARCHBISHOP John Bathersby of Brisbane spelt out the challenges facing the archdiocesan Church and the task ahead, especially for the laity, at the first preparation meeting for Synod 2003 on October 12.
‘Perhaps the world has never needed the Church’s good news more than it does today and surely such a time of need is the very best time to hold the synod,’ he told 600-plus synod assembly members.
The delegates met at Clairvaux MacKillop College, Upper Mt Gravatt, where the archdiocesan synod will assemble from May 1-5.
‘What we are hoping for from the synod is nothing less than the renewal of the archdiocese so that we can better face the challenges of the new century,’ Archbishop Bathersby said.
The challenges included a situation that would be resolved only by vigorous, prolonged dialogue between different religions, he said.
‘Social justice must be pursued in the hope that the gap between rich and poor, which, in the clash of civilisations, is an added cause of resentment, will be addressed,’ Archbishop Bathersby said.
Members were also addressed by Fr David Pascoe, who chairs the synod research and writing team, and Geoff Gowdie, who chairs the processes and procedures group.