Series Of Meetings In Diocese On ‘Tomorrow’s Parish’

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Members of the Diocesan Pastoral Council Shane O’Donoghue, Eileen O’Mahony, Bishop Ray Browne, Jacinta O’Shea and Fr Ger Godley.

THE diocese of Kerry is inviting members to share their thoughts on the future of parish at a series of one-night meetings being held in different venues throughout the diocese.

All are invited to share how they imagine the parish of tomorrow can thrive, given the changing society in which we live. These meetings are the first stage of a planning process being undertaken by the diocese as it maps out a response to today’s needs.

Participants’ inputs will contribute towards the formation of a plan of action. Opportunities will also be provided for individuals and groups who wish to contribute their ideas.

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As the number of priests in parish ministry decrease, the diocese faces many challenges: how will funerals be celebrated in the future, who will support children presenting for first holy communion, who will offer pastoral care and support to the sick and the housebound over the coming years, will churches close and who will support couples wishing to marry in church?

If you would like to have your say, meetings will take place in Castletownbere on March 3rd; Kenmare on March 9th; Killarney on March 10th; Listowel on March 23rd; Dingle on March 26th; Tralee on March 31st and Millstreet on April 2nd.

All meetings begin at 8pm and will conclude by 10pm. Everyone is welcome. Further details on and parish newsletters.

Bishop Ray Browne in launching the planning process around ‘Tomorrow’s Parish’, on ‘Horizons’ on Radio Kerry, talked about the challenges of nourishing  faith and passing it on, alongside the decline in the number of priests and the fact that over the next five years a large number of our priests reach the age of 75 retirement age.

Bishop Ray says: “Lay ministry is real! It should always be with us. Lay ministry is simply people fulfilling their own baptismal calling”. He invites people to participate and have their say in these listening meetings.

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