Building bridges at Mary Help of Christians Parish
With a busy year beckoning, Mary Help of Christians Parish, South Woden, recently took time out for a one-day retreat of parish leadership teams.
With its emphasis on fellowship and spiritual reflection, the retreat was an initiative of the MHOC Parish Pastoral Council to foster leadership support and training.
It was also an opportunity to induct fresh members onto the teams, including new youth minister, Nick Weir.
“I’m very much looking forward to being part of such a welcoming community and administering to the young people in the parish,” Nick said.
In addition to the PPC, other attendees also included representatives from the parish’s Finance, Acolyte, RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults), and Liturgy teams.
“With Nick and other new members coming on board, the day was all about getting to know one another on a deeper level,” said parish priest, Fr Richard Thompson.
“It was also all about working as one team and building a common vision,” he said.
The retreat was facilitated by the Catholic Education Office’s Paddy McGrath.
After Fr Richard’s Acknowledgment of Country, Paddy led attendees on a reflection of Pope Francis’s recent Apostolic Letter on Saint Joseph and the messages and lessons one might draw from the life of the Saint.
Later sessions included reflections on the importance of the church and the role of relationships in it for connecting with God and with each other.
The day concluded with a discussion of work underway in drafting the parish’s new strategic plan.
The retreat was highly successful, according to Parish Pastoral Council member, Anna Hayes.
“It was a great day and very nurturing,” she said.
“It provided a lot of bridges for all the teams to connect and Paddy was a great facilitator. He brought warmth, practicality as well as sacredness to the day.”