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Reflection – Fr Josh Whitehead Oct 6, 2023

Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
Fr Josh 2 minute homily
Fr Josh 2 minute homily

God speaks to us

I am consistently amazed (and grateful) at the different ways that God is revealing Godself to us in this parish. I recently had the opportunity to sit down for a coffee with a parishioner who wanted to share a significant Encounter experience – their very first. This parishioner experienced God both speaking (they heard something with the ears of their heart), and God’s powerful presence (they felt the supernatural power of God’s presence) in a way which led to the experience of healing in their life. Friends, this is something to celebrate because it means that Jesus is real; it means that the Holy Spirit really is here, helping us; and it means that God is alive and speaks to us through his Word, Jesus, with whom we can have a personal relationship! If that’s not good news, then I’m not sure what it…

 

This weekend, we celebrate the Patronal Feast of the whole parish, Our Lady of the Rosary (7 October). It’s an opportunity to celebrate unity in our parish as well as the many fruits which are emerging. These fruits – a greater desire to serve, give, and share the joy – are becoming observable as a direct result of people encountering Jesus in life-changing ways. Most of these people have been life-long, faithful Catholics, who’ve either had the desire for more in their lived experience of faith, or have simply been curious about the changes they can see in others.

 

In a special way, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to those who, over the last 12 months, have stepped up into leadership roles. While we are still very much within the implementation phase of our Strategic Plan, the fact that we are seeing fruit emerge in this early stage of the journey is testament to the hard work and dedication of those who are saying “yes”; those who are exercising their God-given skills, gift and talents for the purpose of building up the Body of Christ in our communities.

 

This whole-of-parish celebration is part of a much wider strategy to promote unity in our large and diverse parish. In fact, one of the major outcomes of our Strategic Plan is to advocate unity across all the communities of the parish. The Community Life Ministry Leadership Team have done much of the heavy lifting to organise the celebration this weekend, and we thank you! This team are also invested in supporting each community to celebrate the Feast Day of their patron each year and invite the whole parish. Next year, the principal whole-of-parish event will be the centenary celebration of the first Catholic church in Maleny on Sunday 4 February. Let’s get behind these whole-of-parish initiatives as we strive to be one, as Jesus both prayed during the last supper (Jn 17:21), and speaks to us here at this time.

 

May God Bless you

Fr Josh

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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