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Fr David Ranson, left, and Fr Paul Crotty (Supplied)

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference has named the two parish priests selected to attend a global gathering of 300 priests at the Vatican. Source: ACBC Media Blog.

Broken Bay Diocese Vicar General Fr David Ranson and Fr Paul Crotty of Port Pirie Diocese will attend the “Parish Priests for the Synod: An International Meeting” between April 28 April and May 2.

The gathering has been described as a “worldwide meeting of listening, prayer and discernment”.

Fr Ranson was the secretary of the Fifth Plenary Council of Australia and, as parish priest of Chatswood, he has pioneered a synodal pathway – Parish-in-Council – for discernment of the parish’s mission to “Bring the light of Christ to the city”.

“I am profoundly grateful for this opportunity and look forward to sharing both a national and local perspective on the important consideration of what it might mean to be a genuinely synodal Church,” he said.

“I am looking forward to learning from the experience across the Church.”

Fr Crotty is the parish priest of Coober Pedy in South Australia.

“For nearly five years I have been in the Parish of Coober Pedy Inland Mission, which is the size of France and comprises families in small towns, on cattle stations and on the Aboriginal APY lands,” Fr Crotty said.

“Effective ministry out here in the outback is being present to the people. Pope Francis would say ‘to have the smell of the sheep’.”

Fr Crotty will also share with other priests from around the world the experience of the Port Pirie diocesan assembly, which he said had for over 25 years “practised the rudiments of synodality – reflecting, praying and listening as Church”.

During the five-day meeting, the priests will participate in roundtable discussions, liturgical celebrations, workshops on pastoral proposals, and dialogue with experts. 

It is being held in the lead-up to the second session of the XVI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops to be convened in Rome in October.


City and outback voices to be heard at international meeting (ACBC Media Blog