Outreach, Community and Mission

Featured Image: Wikimania2009 Ariel Kanterewicz, CC BY 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons  people arriving

“This theme reflected the desire to be an outward-looking, inclusive community, welcoming others in and helping those in need (local and abroad), as well as being part of the wider Catholic Church. Being more involved in the local community was often mentioned as was offering social events to build (re-build) the community post-Covid, and not just coming to Mass. Groups who might need extra effort, the lonely, single people, mothers and babies were mentioned. Youth groups and Catholic young adult social events were also suggested. ‘Mission’ was mentioned specifically by some, along with Good Works. “Catholicism should be accessible to all, not just in church”…”nurturing the community”.

If you are using this prayer by yourself at home, then remember that you are not alone. You are a valued member of this group, you are sharing this retreat together. Each person will pray and ponder in their own time and place, but the Spirit is with each and every one and all of you. You are together in God.

A:       God, you have gathered all your people in Synod, We give you thanks for the joy experienced by those who decided to set out to listen to God and to their brothers and sisters, with an attitude of welcome, humility and siblinghood. Help us to enter these pages as on “holy ground”.

A: Creator of the world, eternal God,
B: we come together from our own places for a little while.

A: Redeemer of humanity, God with us,
B: we have come with all our differences seeking common respect

A: Spirit of unity, go-between God,
B: we have come with stories of our own to a place where stories meet.

A: So here, in this space, let us take time together. for when your people gather and stories are shared, there is much to celebrate and honour.
B: In your name, three in one God, pattern of community. Amen.

Adapted from “Iona Abbey Worship Book”, 2001. copyright © WGRG, Iona Community, Glasgow, Scotland. wildgoose.scot. Reproduced by permission.

Summary of the Diocesan Report

  • “Catholicism should be accessible to all, not just in Church, nurturing the community”.
  • There was a strong desire to be an outward looking, inclusive community, welcoming others and helping those in need at home and abroad and evangelising.
  • Suggestions included more social events with extra effort to reach e.g. lonely, mothers and babies, single people, young, and recognising the gifts and needs of the elderly.

A. First impressions

  • What I like about this summary is ………
  • What I do not like about this summary is ……..
  • This summary makes me feel ……..


Luke 9 1:6

When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. He told them: “Take nothing for the journey—no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra shirt. Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that town. If people do not welcome you, leave their town and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.” So they set out and went from village to village, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.

Points to Ponder

  • The mission of the 12 is the mission of the church today.
  • The urgency of the mission – Go now!
  • Jesus insists the missionaries go in a vulnerable state – they are to be dependent on their host community.  How do we welcome and encourage this vulnerability in our leaders?

Reflect, Respond. Share

B. Reflect

  • In this passage Jesus is saying to me …
  • My response to this is …
  • This makes me feel …

C. Respond

  • If I was to review my responses to parts A and B I would say …
  • Something I have discovered is …

D. Share

  • A few days later, read what you have written for C. Is there something that you are comfortable to share with the group? It could be what you have written, or maybe a poem, painting or photo could better express what you want to say.

Closing prayer

A: As we continue in our retreat together, in this day and in our lives
B: May we be grateful for the blessings of this day, today and each day.
B: May we be grateful for the new stories and new ways of thinking we have explored, today and each day.
B: May we be grateful for kind company, heedful to God, heedful to ourselves and heedful to each other, today and each day

A. We pray for God’s eloquence
B. As we speak of the Good News of the Gospel
A. We pray for God’s vulnerability
B. As we reach out in welcome
A. We pray for God’s courage and energy
B. For those who encounter apathy or aggression
A. We pray for God’s empathy and respect
B. As we reach out to those we regard as different to ourselves
A. We pray for God’s Wisdom
B. As we discern together the way forward towards justice and inclusion.
A: God from whom all gifts come, who shares our adventure, and delights in our friendship
B: We thank you for your presence with us as we continue in our retreat this day, and each day of our lives. Amen