Mission: One Heart Many Voices
This year Catholic Mission held their Mission Conference in Sydney from 13th - 15th May. The Ursuline Sisters were a proud sponsor of the conference and two of our delegates have provided their feedback from the three days spent engaged in all things mission.
It certainly was a gathering of many voices and a strong sense of one heart filled with energy for mission.
Moving among the hundreds of people, and attending different workshops, one picked up a sense that people are strongly involved in mission and on fire with their commitment.
I felt challenged by the young people who led us in the opening prayer, ‘A Christian Prayer in union with creation.’ Laudato Si. They presented issues that people confront from their perspective and helped us to focus differently and listen to them.
Bishop Paul Tighe led us through a session on Creating Culture and Communication for Mission. His focus was digital communication and how it is changing our culture, and the question of how we are going to be present/meaningful in the new culture, the digital world? These are questions we will need to delve into as we continue to find ways of being in relationships of quality yet communicating more and more in a digital world. Carol Zinn also presented excellent input on Leadership for Mission Today. Her notes and other keynote presentations can be found on mohmv.com.au/2019conference
I came away with a sense that the mission of the Jesus in the church is alive and well, being led by dedicated and generous people. As Michele Connolly said, “It is God’s mission – not mine. It is God’s energy in me. Relax and let what God’s mission in the world is – operate through me.”Helen Dyson osu
At the end of conferences, workshops or days of in-service, you are often asked to write down one or two things you can take away, that have impacted you or practical ideas you can use. The Mission: One Heart One Voice Conference presented me with ideas, resources and information, igniting a renewed passion for mission.
Below are just to a few things that were presented that really resonated with me…
• Throughout the experience the message of mission was presented in numerous creative ways using the Arts; music, media, song, dance, drama - ways we can engage not only our youth but us all.
• Leadership for Mission involves:
o choosing love over fear, every time, and everywhere.
o choosing mercy over judgement every time and everywhere
o choosing inclusion over exclusion, every time and everywhere. (Carol Zinn)
• Bishop Paul Tighe shared that the “Digital World” is real – it can affect and change people and we, the church, need to be present in this world – not by selling our message but by sharing and talking!
• When working with youth remember the 5 F’s: Fun, Food, Formation, Faith and Friends!
• Extraordinary Mission Month was also presented, something I knew nothing about and will investigate http://www.october2019.va
However, what has stuck with me most from the conference is the excitement I now feel for where our church is heading. We are being called to listen, to be passionate, and to be the ones who will instigate change; my one heart can listen, my one heart can be passionate, my one voice can ignite a fire, my one voice can instigate change. I just need to trust and allow the Holy Spirit to take me where she wants me to go!Bernie Ballie