Recent Addresses and Pastoral Letters

Pastoral Letter for Lent 2015

Monday 2 February 2015
 
Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I invite you to join me in our common pilgrimage to Jesus and to others, which is the season of Lent.

Through casting aside our own self-sufficiency and indifference we see once again the journey of Jesus through suffering to Easter and new life.

In the Church we are one with others who suffer and have a unity in holy things; the love of God revealed to us in Jesus and his gifts. We are invited to respond by being touched by this love, so that we can do something for those whom we could never otherwise reach, asking that we may be open to his plan of salvation.

In our parishes and communities, do we care for our weakest and insignificant members? We need to press beyond the boundaries of the visible Church in two ways:

First, the prayer of the Church on earth establishes a communion of mutual service and goodness: prayer; fasting, which focuses our mind and heart; a share in the Eucharist and in special times of prayer and Adoration – particularly the twenty-four hours for the Lord which will be observed throughout the Church on Friday 13 to Saturday 14 March. All will help us to see ourselves and our world as God sees us and to be the bearers of God’s hope and light.

Similarly, every community is called to go out of itself and to be engaged in the life of the society of which it is part, especially with the poor and those who are far away. Our mission is humbly to bear witness by our prayer and works of love, that Christ is the Lord of all and is present among us.

Our sharing in Project Compassion and other works of charity are a demonstration of our new awareness of each other and of the call to conversion which reminds me of the uncertainty of my own life.

Finally, Lent is an opportunity for formation of the heart. If we are merciful to others, we must have a strong and steadfast heart, open to God bringing love along the road to our brothers and sisters; one which realises our poverty and gives ourselves freely to others.

Through this journey together may we cast aside the indifference that we have and be more aware to the needs of others, more united to the vision of Christ to seek out our brothers and sisters.

Thank you for your prayer and generosity in this special time when we walk with Jesus to his resurrection.

+ Denis J. Hart,

ARCHBISHOP OF MELBOURNE.

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