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Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving Feb 23, 2024

Second Sunday of Lent
LENT_Fr Josh reflection
LENT_Fr Josh reflection

Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving

This last week, we were incredibly blessed to have Jo Hayes with us for our annual three-day Lenten Mini Mission. Over the last three years, we’ve had some extremely talented speakers in Fr Richard Leonard, Br Damien Price and Bsp Tim Norton – we can now add Jo Hayes to that list. Jo’s main aim was to open the 80 participants’ hearts to a greater desire for hearing the voice of God, and thus pray in such a way to be in a dialogue with God through the daily practice of reading the Bible. Daily reading of the Scriptures, coupled with Silence, Solitude and Stillness are, as Jo shared, the four essential elements to hearing God’s voice. God is inviting each one of us to daily, personal, private prayer with the Bible.


How is your fasting going this Lent? Are you fasting from something, or have you taken up something. Both practices are designed to lead us into a deeper relationship with both Jesus and other people. I, myself, realised that my fasting from alcohol during Lent was more about health than a concrete manifestation of my desire to know and love God/others in deeper ways. It is certainly not too late to make an adjustment to your Lenten fast.


You may remember last year, Fr Francis and I preaching about an increase in financial giving during Lent for two weeks for the purpose of hiring some key staff. I’m delighted to announce that, having now had the benefit of one year since then, we are in a position to hire both a new parish secretary to assist Vicki and the office volunteers (see page 3), and a full time Director/Coordinator of Evangelisation. If Evangelisation is our reason of existence as a Church – something Pope Paul VI wrote about in 1975, and which Pope Francis has reiterated time-and-again – then deliberately investing in Evangelisation is essential to our mission. Indeed, Evangelisation – inviting others into a relationship with Jesus – is the mission!


After advertising for someone to employ to lead our parish in evangelisation, I received six applications but none had any track record of actively accompanying people to encounter Jesus. I changed tact and began to pray about it more, acknowledging to God, “This is your parish, please reveal the right person.” Low-and-behold, I think my prayers have been answered! I may have found the right person and while it’s far too early to reveal any details at this stage, I simply wanted to acknowledge and thank those of you who have both continued to give, and those who were able to actively responded to the invitation to increase your giving to this mission we’ve been given. Your continuing generosity is not taken for granted; thank you.


The person I’m discussing this role with lives in Brisbane and while hiring them would be an absolute coup for our parish, their ability to take up the role of Director/Coordinator of Evangelisation for the parish very much relies on the availability accommodation. Do you, or anyone you know, have a one/two bed unit available to rent? I’m very much aware of the housing crisis in our part of the world but I’m also convinced that God will place it on the heart of someone who has a unit to rent to offer it (come Holy Spirit).


Peace and blessings

    Fr Josh  























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