Skip to content

Reflection: The Joy of the Gospel Apr 26, 2024

Fifth Sunday of Easter

The Joy of the Gospel

The “joy of the gospel” is the theme of Pope Francis’ 2013 apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium. The very first words from that document – “The joy of the gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus” – carry much weight in the context of our parish’s mission: to be a vibrant community that actively accompanies people to encounter Jesus. Encountering Jesus is often described by people as the experience of being filled with or given something that wasn’t previously there: joy, love, peace, or hope. Many people describe this experience as being filled with the Holy Spirit – in whose power lies these wonderful gifts, and by whose power we are transformed.

Friends, the transformation of our lives in order to be conformed to Jesus is the name of the Catholic-Christian game. This theme of transformation utterly pervades our Gospel this weekend. Jesus’ words, “I am the vine, you are the branches,” speak to the necessity of being pruned (transformed) into people who produce fruit. Indeed, grape vines, like all fruit trees, require pruning/cutting back so that they bear more fruit. This fruit in our lives is nothing other than leading others to encounter Jesus. But that’s a difficult, even impossible, thing to do if we aren’t sure that we have ever encountered Him ourselves.

For most people (not all, but I’d hazard a guess, most), who have encountered Jesus, however, it wasn’t something that just happened to them. They weren’t walking along the street and were magically zapped with joy, love, peace, or hope. For most people, their experience came as a tremendous gift which started with a desire in their hearts for more. They began to satisfy their desire for more by investing in their faith through prayer and learning by seeking to understand the gift of faith they already possessed; this caused a new openness in their hearts for the more that Jesus desired for them.

Faith & Formation Ministry in our parish – like the other five ministry areas – is an indispensable part of our Mission going forward. The ministry’s mandate is to guide and facilitate the
development of faith and discipleship in all adult parishioners through providing opportunities for spiritual and prayerful accompaniment, formation experiences, and open dialogue. In our parish (and as we continue to implement our five-year plan), there are people who are embodying many of our values by courageously, generously and joyfully using their gifts to offer Faith & Formation opportunities for others. They do so in a way which communicates their desire to be relationship-centred with others and which also becomes an expression of their desire to also be authentically Christ-centred. As well as people serving these ways in the Faith & Formation Ministry, we also have a growing stable of parishioners who, in this new season of our parish’s journey, are both courageously, and joyfully engaging in opportunities to learn and grow in their faith and formation. Ultimately, these opportunities create a space for transformation in hearts that desire more, and, therefore, lead to a desire to be more Christ-centred and relationship-centred.

Friends, these are our Parish Values and so as we continue our journey to the celebration of National Volunteers’ Week, I would like to conclude by inviting you to celebrate others when you see them living our Values in outward ways.

Peace and blessings,

Fr Josh 

Sponsors Of The Parish Newsletter:

Share This Post:

Recent Releases

Recent Posts

Pentecost Sunday

Pentecost Sunday: Happy Birthday to Us, the Church!

Happy Birthday to Us, the Church! There are currently 64 young people on the Sacramental Program preparing for ...
Pentecost Sunday

Ministry Update

Worship The solemnity of Pentecost holds profound significance for the Catholic Church, symbolizing the descent of the Holy ...
Pentecost Sunday

Parish News

Due to a Staff Retreat, the Parish Office will be closed this Wednesday 22nd May.  Thank you! Thank ...
Pentecost Sunday

Parish Diary

This Week in Our Parish Monday 20 May:  9.00am Mass Our Lady of the Rosary, Caloundra. 9.30am Adoration Our ...
Scroll To Top