Pastoral Message: Meeting Jesus in our Mission

Sunday 12th July 2020

As part of Hope in the Future Stage 3, we have been reflecting on our parish liturgies. Our final pastoral message and worksheet focusses on the concluding rites of the Mass and being sent out on Mission. It is designed for this weekend (11th/12th July – 15th Sunday in Ordinary Time).

You may wish to share the worksheet during the Mass and electronically on your parish website and social media for individuals and families to reflect on. Teams may wish to meet virtually to discuss or discuss at a later date.

The worksheet includes a pastoral message from Bishop John, teaching on this part of the Mass and discussion and reflection questions.

In the fourth worksheet of the series, Bishop John writes:

Having encountered Jesus in each other, in his word and in his body and blood we are called to go out from our parish communities and be the living Church. When we receive Jesus in the Eucharist, he lives in us and we live in
him. This is the source for our Christian lives and the source of our strength for the mission that Jesus gave us “to make disciples of all the nations” (Matthew 28:19). We are called to become what we have received and to be Jesus to others. We must speak to others of his love and mercy, we must serve our brothers and sisters around us and we must care for his creation, our common home, as Missionary Disciples and ambassadors for Christ. The parable which we have just heard, the Parable of the Sower (Matthew 13:1-9), underpins the Hope in the Future Programme. Our mission is to continue sowing seeds everywhere we go. Some seeds will fall on good soil and grow whilst others may not. If we continually share the Good News of Jesus with all those we meet – through our actions as well as words – we can leave the rest to God.

During these challenging days, we have had to be a missionary Church in different ways. It has been wonderful to see so many parishes live streaming Masses, offering online formation, and providing acts of service to their
communities. As churches reopen, we have a wonderful challenge of welcoming newcomers to our parishes.

Questions to Consider:

Personal Reflections

  • Do I feel nourished after holy communion? Do I feel a sense of relief that Mass is over?
  • Has the Mass strengthened our identity as a community?
  • Do people (do I) leave immediately after communion? Are there justifiable reason for this?
  • Do I leave Mass feeling different from when I arrived?
  • Do I take away a message, thought or prayer for the week?

Practical Considerations

  • Is the Concluding Rite cluttered? Are there too many notices?
  • How can we develop a sense of mission as we leave Mass on a Saturday/Sunday?
  • If we have been streaming Mass online, could this continue for the housebound? Could a message be
    added to the end of the stream encouraging those joining the stream to attend in person?
  • Is our parish website/social media up-to-date with the latest newsletter and prayer resources?

View the worksheet by clicking here

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