Dear sisters and brothers in Christ,
The Second Assembly of the Fifth Plenary Council of the Catholic Church in Australia, which took place in Sydney between Sunday, 3 July and Saturday, 9 July 2022, in one sense brings to an end the long journey of the Plenary Council. After four and a half years, during which so many Catholics engaged in prayer, reflection and discussion, this final assembly discerned some important directions for the Church in Australia as we move into an uncertain future. The results of the Plenary Council, which will now be referred to the Holy Father, Pope Francis, for his reflection and advice, can be found on the Plenary Council website.1
Once the Pope has given his approval, the decisions of the Plenary Council will need to be implemented at the local level of each Australian diocese, including our own. In that sense the Plenary Council, although its formal sessions are completed, is only just beginning – for the Council will not be effective, and we will not have responded to the guidance of the Holy Spirit, until we bring the Council’s decisions alive in each local Catholic community and setting.
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