As World Mission Sunday was celebrated in parishes and communities around the world on 21 October, Catholic Mission is calling on Australians to cast their hearts and minds to the missionary work of the Church in places of need.
The mission agency’s dual-focus World Mission Appeal draws on the message of Pope Francis for World Mission Sunday, in which he says: “Every man and woman is a mission. That is the reason for our life on this Earth”.
In parish appeals that happened all around the country, Australians will heard inspiring stories of mission work changing lives in Myanmar, India, and other parts of the world.
Pope Francis has emphasised the importance of young people in the life and mission of the
Church in his message for the 92nd World Mission Day.
World Mission Day is held each year in October across the world witnessing the missionary commitment of Catholic communities and individuals to building a better world for all of
For several years, Catholic Mission’s collaboration with the Church in this growing Asian country has been specifically directed toward the growth and fostering of the educational gifts of young people.
Fr Brian Lucas, National Director of Catholic Mission, spoke of the importance of young and vibrant hearts leading in areas of evangelisation and development.
“World Mission Sunday is the ultimate global celebration of mission,” he said.
“Building on the very successful Australian Catholic Youth Festival in Sydney at the end of last year, our challenge as a Church in Australia is to engage with young people and help them become the missionary disciples Christ is calling them to be.”
Fr Lucas emphasised the partnership that Catholic Mission has created with the Young Christian Students and Workers (YCS/YCW) movement in assisting young people to find opportunities for reflection and action in bring Christ to their world.
The Pope’s message draws on previous works such as Redemptoris Missio and the words of St John Paul II in a letter that promotes a Christian faith that remains “ever young when it is open to the mission that Christ entrusts to us”.
Pope Francis writes of the history of the Pontifical Mission Societies in his message and addresses it to young people as they prepare for October’s Synod on Young People.
“This coming October, the month of the missions, we will hold the Synod devoted to you.
It will prove to be one more occasion to help us become missionary disciples, ever more passionately devoted to Jesus and his mission, to the ends of the earth.
“No one is so poor as to be unable to give what they have, but first and foremost what they are. Let me repeat the words of encouragement that I addressed to the young people of Chile: ‘Never think that you have nothing to offer, or that nobody needs you. Many people need you. Think about it! Each of you, think in your heart: many people need me’.”
Ultimately, this message reminds us that we give what we are, not what we have. In his first Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis wrote, “I am mission on this Earth” [EG 273], emphasising that by not only sharing what we have, but our hearts and minds for Christ, then we will truly be missionary disciples.
Thoughts will quickly turn to October next year, which Pope Francis has declared an Extraordinary Month of Mission.
“Catholic Mission looks forward to working closely with the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, and the local bishops, parishes and religious congregations to make October 2019 a time for all Australian Catholics to recommit to their baptismal calling to be missionaries of Christ’s saving message,” Fr Lucas said.
For more information about the 2018 World Mission Appeal, visit: www.catholicmission.org.au.