Christmas Crib Competition

Thanks and congratulations to all the children who entered our recent Christmas crib competition. You demonstrated a range of artistic and highly imaginative skills. Below are a sample of the children’s work. You can see more on our parish Facebook page and the cribs are all on display in the narthex.

What just happened at the Synod?

On Friday 10th November, Austen Ivereigh, the well-known writer on Catholic affairs and papal biographer, came to visit us to share his reflections on the recent Synod gathering in Rome. This meeting of the global Church happened throughout October. Austen had a key role as one of the ‘scribes’ tasked with recording emerging thoughts and themes.

More than 100 parishioners and visitors from nearby parishes enjoyed listening to Austen’s engaging talk. This was followed by an opportunity for all present to ask questions and add their own observations.

Austen explained that the role women play in the Church is becoming one of the Synod’s most important focuses. Although female ordination is not within the remit of the current Synod, urgent attention is being given to how women can play a bigger part in the life of the Church, including its leadership.

Austen also highlighted three points:

  1. The Church can create new ministries and these can be used to empower people to contribute more fully to the mission given to us by Jesus. This mission must be central to all we do: ‘The Church does not have a mission – the mission has a Church.’
  2. This mission increasingly takes place in the digital space, especially for younger people. The Church already has a presence online but this needs to grow.
  3. The Synodal process has shown us the importance of listening to help us discern the prompting of the Holy Spirit. Future decision-making in the Church should always begin with listening, as we endeavour to become a truly Synodal Church.

The current Synod on Synodality concludes with a second gathering in Rome in October 2024. In the meantime, we are all encouraged to read and reflect upon the synthesis from the recent meeting. As parishes do this, we are encouraged to try new approaches and gain experience that can be shared with the Synod gathering next year.

You can see Austen’s talk below or on our YouTube channel here (although unfortunately the audio does not begin until about 14 minutes).