The Hyland family from the Catholic Diocese of Broken Bay in Sydney will represent the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference as their official family delegate at the World Meeting of Families (WMF) in Ireland this year.
Shane and Leanne Hyland are members of St Mary of the Cross Church, Warnervale Parish, and have three children Joshua, 12, Alyssa, 8, and Lachlan, 5.
Bishop Michael Kennedy said the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC) was delighted to be able to give an Australian Catholic family the opportunity to travel with their children to Dublin to attend the World Meeting of Families from August 21 to 26, 2018.
A focal point of the WMF will be the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia. Pope Francis has chosen as the theme The Gospel of the Family: Joy for the World for the 2018 WMF.
Bishop Kennedy, the Bishops’ Delegate for Marriage and Family, said Shane and Leanne were actively involved in their local parish where they had initiated and run the Family Group Movement.
Shane has a bachelor of theology and is studying to be a teacher while also working in the Maitland-Newcastle diocese as a prison chaplain.
Leanne is a teacher in the parish school and a member of the parish pastoral council.
Bishop Kennedy said the ACBC was pleased to have an official family-delegate at the international gathering of families and he encouraged other families to take part in the Australian pilgrimage to Dublin.
“It’s a wonderful way for Australian families to share their faith overseas as a local community, while at the same time learning and sharing from other like-minded Catholic families from around the world,” he said.
Shane and Leanne said they were overcome with joy to learn they would be the official family-delegate at the gathering.
“Our faith is of great importance to us and we are passionate about supporting people on their journey of faith,” they said.
“This will be an amazing opportunity for us and our children to be with other families from around the world who are committed to living a life focused on Jesus Christ.
“We look forward to learning from them and sharing our experiences back here in our own parish and school, as well as in the wider Catholic community.”