Bishop Ger Nash (pictured) of Ferns, along with priests of the diocese, met together last week for three days as part of the universal Church’s ongoing journey of synodality.
The assembly of priests worked with facilitators on pastoral development, Scripture, lay ministry, collaboration, synodality, pastoral area formation and leadership. Everyone involved acknowledged that the work of the facilitators, especially the lay participants, was deeply appreciated. All of this work complements the synodal meetings previously undertaken throughout the wider Diocese.
The clergy of Ferns also reflected upon the first drafts of a pastoral plan for the diocese, which is being currently developed by representatives from the Council of Priests and the Diocesan Pastoral Council. The plan grew from the synthesis of communal discernment that concluded Stage 1 of the Irish Synodal Pathway. The plan looks at ways of empowering people, priests and religious to work more closely together in the proclamation of the Good News.
In the context of the priests’ gathering, Bishop Nash said, “as we continue to discern together the way forward in a time of change for parishes, we pray that parish communities within pastoral areas continue to work together to reflect a reinvigorated communion amongst clergy and laity, an outward pastoral reach and a renewed evangelising mission.”