Over the past three years (2015 – 2017), we have been faithfully united as a community to bring our vision and mission statements: “Towards Strengthening Our Faith Community” to a completion. It was a spiritual journey that we made through our collaboration and prayers. Every one of us was committed in one way or another and played our roles in fostering and revitalising our community of faith. In each formation, event, activity and fellowship we ensured that Christ’s values were present and enacted in our community and family. There were times when we encountered some hiccups and misunderstandings but overall, we supported one another and shared our joy in living out our Christian values each day in our community and families.
On Saturday, 2nd December, about 12 of us came together in prayer to set our pastoral priorities and vision/mission statements for the next three years (2018 – 2020). A few values and core needs were discussed, especially on the current realities and challenges in our parish community and society at large. With these in mind, we look forward to working together with true commitment and zeal, in order to establish the mission of our parish. We realise that as Catholics, we should share the Light of Christ and bring His presence to our non-Catholic friends and lapsed Catholic bothers and sisters, by inviting them to know our faith.
In today’s digital world, our parish should be able to communicate the Good News very clearly, share the faith of Christ more profoundly and speak of Jesus more effectively. We should be able to form relationships within our community and build bridges with everyone, including people of other Faiths. We have to find ways in expressing our faith and to ensure that the Good News of Christ reaches and touches the hearts of everyone within our parish and every part of our world. Through communication, the message of Christ will strengthen our authentic witnessing of our Church and Christ Jesus.
When we take others seriously, and show our respect for them and consider their opinions, we avoid any form of maneuvering and manipulation, then we can share a witness to our faith in Jesus. Every parishioner of St. Joseph’s, Sentul, should know our faith and inspire our parish community by serving and sharing the love of Christ with one another. We need to put in our effort in strengthening family unity in the new spirit of evangelisation, as we bring light, hope and joy of the Gospel to a deeper meaning and understanding.
As Pope Francis has stated: “The Church must be a place of mercy, freely given, where everyone can feel welcome, loved, forgiven and encouraged to live the good life of the Gospel,” (Evangelii Gadium/The Joy of the Gospel, No. 114). Every one of us has a commitment to proclaim Jesus, in our way of life, in each and every culture, in every reality and in every language. In keeping with these sentiments, we have establish the following pastoral strategies and priorities:
VISION: COMMITTING OURSELVES TO NEW EVANGELISATION
PASTORAL PRIORITIES FOR THE YEARS 2018 – 2020
2018 YOUTH: Empowering Transformational Youth
2019 EIRD: Engaging in Ecumenical and Inter-Religious Dialogue
2020 PIHDM: Embracing the 5Ls (Lost, Last, Least, Little and Lonely)
MISSION STATEMENT: As disciples of hope, we the parishioners of St. Joseph, commit ourselves to sharing the light of Christ by building bridges with EVERYONE, including people of other Faiths, respectfully and joyfully.
Fr. George Packiasamy