The call for reform of diocesan and parish governance at the first session of the Maitland-Newcastle Diocesan Synod will strongly influence planning for future sessions. Source: MNnews.Today.
A Governance Focus Group is evaluating diocesan governance structures and processes and will prepare documents and recommendations for the next Synod session in 2021.
It is one of several working groups preparing documents for the Diocesan Synod’s 2021 sessions and is made up of clergy, senior diocesan staff and lay members.
Lawrie Hallinan, chair of the Synod’s Governance Focus Group said the group had embraced the recently released national report on diocesan and parish governance, The Light from the Southern Cross: Promoting Co-Responsible Governance in the Catholic Church in Australia.
This report was recommended by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
“The concerns and hopes expressed at our Diocesan Synod are echoed in many of the themes and recommendations of The Light from the Southern Cross report,” Mr Hallinan said.
“Some of the report’s recommendations are already established practice in the Maitland-Newcastle Diocese, such as a functioning diocesan pastoral council (locally known as the Council for Mission) and a publicly available annual report (including financial report).”
Mr Hallinan said the focus group was grateful for the report’s theological explanations of governance, which emphasise all the baptised fulfilling their right and responsibility as missionary disciples.
The Maitland-Newcastle Diocesan Synod will take place over three sessions. The first session was in November 2019, with further sessions planned for May and November 2021.
Diocesan Synod to draw on National Governance Report (MNnews.Today)