A Journey of Discernment: The Plenary Council
The last six months of the Plenary Council Journey has required many unplanned changes due to COVID-19. This included the decision to postpone the Plenary Council gatherings to 3-10 October 2021 (Adelaide) and 4-9 July 2022 (Sydney).
What hasn’t changed though, is the heart of the journey – the discernment process.
Archbishop Tim Costelloe SDB has written a paper reflecting on the genesis of the Plenary Council, retracing the journey so far and offering insights into the period leading up to the assemblies in 2021 and 2022, as well as the implementation phase beyond. In it, he likens the celebration of the Plenary Council to St Francis’ “San Damiano moment”, where the saint received a calling to rebuild God’s Church.
‘We are being invited to rebuild the Church, to restore it so that its true nature and identity, and its beauty, can be seen again,' Archbishop Costelloe says.
'We are being called to walk together again the path of true fidelity. But if we are, together, to do this we need to understand the gift we have been given, rejoice in it, love it, and be ambitious for its future. ... The key lies in a careful consideration of what fidelity to the Lord and the Lord’s will for the Church really looks like.'
New reflection guide for Plenary Council thematic papers
A new reflection guide has been prepared to help people engage further in the discernment process, respond prayerfully to what has emerged and to listen deeply to the voice of the Spirit and to one another as preparations for the Plenary Council continue.