Forming of Local Animators for the Listening and Dialogue Encounter

Dear Diocesan and Community Leaders,

You are being asked to identify and invite those people in your parish, agency, school, organisation or group who could be formed as Animators for the National Plenary Council and the Diocesan Synod.  Local animators will be trained and asked to assist in the listening and dialogue process associated with both of these important processes.  

I am sure you are aware of the call from the Bishops of Australia to hold a Plenary Council for the Church of Australia. This is an important and significant moment for our church and our diocese. The Plenary Council provides us with an opportunity to listen to God and each other, to share our stories, to repsect and hold our difference, and to be transformed and expanded by what we hear. The agenda for the Plenary Council will be created through our listening and dialogue in response to the question:

What do you think God is asking of us in Australia at this time?

Bishop Bill Wright has also indicated his desire to hold a Diocesan Synod, a formal assembly of representatives of the whole diocesan community: clergy, religious and lay people. Diocesan Synods, like Plenary Councils, are important instruments and occasions for effecting renewal.

In order for our diocesan community to prepare for both the Plenary Council and the Diocesan Synod, all Catholic organisations, within the diocese, are encouraged to be invovled and assist. As the leader of your respective body, please find attached the process in which the diocese wishes to engage. Your assistance is critical in leading this spirit-led moment for our diocesan church and the wider Church of Australia.

It is hoped that more than one animator will be identified from within each organisation.  The document below provides you with some basic information about the Plenary Council and dates for local animator training and formation sessions. Please think about who you could invite to be formed as part of this significant listening process.

The timeline for our participation and response is not extensive, hence the need to call upon yourimmediate co-operation and support. It is important that as many conversations as possible be held across the whole diocesan community, with the intention of maximising the number of people who participate.  There is a real desire to hear the voice of those connected with the Catholic Church and those whose sense of connection may be tenuous.  Feedback from these conversations needs to be recorded on the Plenary Council website so that our contribution is made to both the Plenary Council and Diocesan Synod.

Also below is the Listening and Dialogue Encounter, the suggested process for engaging in small groups. Every person’s story and experience of faith, and the Church, is important and it is essential that every effort is made to reach out and include as many people as possible, as we endeavour to listen to what the Spirit is saying to the people of God.

Please share the information about the Plenary Council and Diocesan Synod as widely as possible within your organisation and among your networks.  Videos and promotional materials are available the Plenary Council 2020 website.

Once your local animator/s is/are selected, please invite them to identify themselves by filling out the submission form online at Local Animinator Submission Form.

We look forward to meeting with them.

Thank you for considering this invitation to assist the diocese and the Church of Australia in listening to what the Spirit is saying.

Yours sincerely,

Teresa Brierley

VICE CHANCELLOR PASTORAL MINISTRIES

Local Animators

To assist in the listening and dialogue process, some people will be invited/chosen to take up the role of “Local Animator”. Animators will simply be tasked with animating a group i.e. leading, encouraging, guiding the listening and dialogue.

Open conversations and animator training and formation for the Plenary Council process will be conducted in the following locations:

Locations

Date

Location

Place

Time

Tuesday

21 August

Booragul

St Paul’s College Hall
Primrose Street

Street parking only for evening session as carpark generally pretty full during the day.

Session 1 - 1.00pm – 4.00pm

 

Session 2 – 5.30pm – 8.30pm

Thursday

23 August

Raymond Terrace

St Brigid’s Parish Hall
52 Irrawang Street,

Street parking

Session 1 - 1.00pm – 4.00pm

 

Session 2 – 5.30pm – 8.30pm

Wednesday

29 August

Maitland

All Saints College, St Mary’s Campus Hall
Bent Street, Maitland

Plenty of street parking and in staff carpark off Bent Street

Session 1 - 1.00pm – 4.00pm

 

Session 2 – 5.30pm – 8.30pm

Thursday

30 August

Taree

Our Lady of the Rosary Parish Hall
Albert Street

Parking in Albert St and also behind St Mary’s hall (via laneway off Albert Street)

Session 1 - 1.00pm – 4.00pm

 

Session 2 – 5.30pm – 8.30pm

Tuesday

4 September

Gateshead

St Paul’s Primary School Hall
66 Felton Street

Street parking or carpark off Felton Street

Session 1 - 1.00pm – 4.00pm

 

Session 2 – 5.30pm – 8.30pm

Wednesday

5 September

Newcastle West

Cathedral House
Murray Room
841 Hunter Street

 

Session 1 - 1.00pm – 4.00pm

 

Session 2 – 5.30pm – 8.30pm

Thursday

6 September

Aberdeen

St Joseph’s High School Library
49-53 Segenhoe St

Carpark off Segenhoe St. Overflow next door to school with driveway adjacent to church

Session 1 - 1.00pm – 4.00pm

 

Session 2 – 5.30pm – 8.30pm

Sunday

9 September

Newcastle West

Cathedral House
Toohey Room
841 Hunter Street

 

Session – 1.30pm – 4.30pm

(5pm Mass at the Cathedral)