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Save the Dates – Coming Up

You are invited to Three Sessions of Q and A in the Crypt:
“DO WE DARE TO DREAM?”

Weaving our Conversations into Possibilities.

The Crypt, St Patrick’s Church, Grosvenor Street, Sydney
1.30—3.00pm (Doors open 1.00pm)

Sunday, March 31st – Stephanie Lorenzo, Voices of Faith & TBA “Women Dare to Dream – Share Your Dream”

Sunday, 23rd June – “Ongoing Response to Child Sexual Abuse”

Sunday, 22nd September – “Plenary Council 2020 Update”

YOU ARE MOST WELCOME. NO NEED TO BOOK.
DONATION APPRECIATED.

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2018 Calendar

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Make this Advent a season of True Conversation (4)

prepared by Fr Michael Whelan sm

It is well nigh impossible to have true conversation at speed!

Slow down – with yourself and with other people.

Choose to do some ordinary things each day deliberately:
Making a cup of coffee.
Setting the table.
Eating a meal together.
Washing your face.
Walking along the street.
Making the bed.
Learn to wait upon the moment. Dwell. Abide.
Listen with the ear of the heart!

“Nothing is ever completed … Incompleteness is a part of nature and it takes
great art or great wisdom to know when to lay down the brush …
we should always avoid perfectionism.”
(Jean Monnet, Memoirs, Trans. Richard Mayne, Doubleday, 1978, 521.)

Advent Prayer
(To be said each morning)

“Lord, keep my heart always set on You today,
so that from it will flow the springs of life.
Protect me from crooked speech,
and put devious talk far from me.
Let my eyes look directly forward,
and my gaze be straight before you.
Keep straight the path of my feet,
and all my ways will be sure.
Let me not swerve to the right or to the left;
turn my feet away from evil. Amen”
(Adapted from Proverbs 4:23-27)

“When you visualized a man or a woman carefully, you could always begin to feel pity — that was a quality God`s image carried with it. When you saw the lines at the corners of the eyes, the shape of the mouth, how the hair grew, it was impossible to hate. Hate was just a failure of imagination.”
(Graham Green, The Power and the Glory, Penguin, 1971, 131)

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Make this Advent a season of True Conversation (3)

prepared by Fr Michael Whelan sm

The art of asking open questions can help with true conversation.

An open question is a question which I ask but do not answer.

Learn to just listen!

Practice asking yourself open questions as you go about your day:
What is happening here?
What is happening inside me?
What is happening between us?
What am I feeling?
What might he/she be feeling?

Open questioning will often surface obstacles to relationships.
Simply face what surfaces, ask the next open question and listen.
Resist the temptation to analyze.
Trust the truth of it.

The truth will set you free!

“Life is not so much beginnings and endings as it is middles, middles that don’t measure up — and our happiness depends on how we come to terms with the pale reflections of our dreams.
(Paul D. Zimmerman, “Middles and Muddles,” Newsweek, September 27, 1971, 106)

Advent Prayer
(To be said each morning)

“Lord, keep my heart always set on You today,
so that from it will flow the springs of life.
Protect me from crooked speech,
and put devious talk far from me.
Let my eyes look directly forward,
and my gaze be straight before you.
Keep straight the path of my feet,
and all my ways will be sure.
Let me not swerve to the right or to the left;
turn my feet away from evil. Amen”

(Adapted from Proverbs 4:23-27)

“We exist solely for this, to be the place He has chosen for His presence, His manifestation in the world, His epiphany.”
Thomas Merton: Spiritual Master – The Essential Writings, edited by Lawrence S Cunningham, Paulist Press, 1992, 425

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Make this Advent a season of True Conversation (2)

prepared by Fr Michael Whelan sm

Read this poem out loud thoughtfully several times:

Out in the dark, I know, sing a thousand voices;
and the owl, the poet’s bird, and the saint’s white moth
blunder against my window, the frog in the rain rejoices.
I pledge to the night and day my life’s whole truth.
And you, who speak in me when I speak well,
Withdraw not your grace, leave me not dry and cold,
I have praised you in the pain of love, I would praise you still
In the slowing of the blood, the time when I grow old.

(Judith Wright, “Prayer” in Judith Wright: Collected Poems,
Angus & Robertson, 1994, 229)

“At that time I will change the speech of the peoples to a pure speech,
that all of them may call on the name of the LORD
and serve him with one accord.”
(Zephaniah 3:9)

Advent Prayer

(To be said each morning)

“Lord, keep my heart always set on You today,
so that from it will flow the springs of life.
Protect me from crooked speech,
and put devious talk far from me.
Let my eyes look directly forward,
and my gaze be straight before you.
Keep straight the path of my feet,
and all my ways will be sure.
Let me not swerve to the right or to the left;
turn my feet away from evil. Amen”

(Adapted from Proverbs 4:23-27)

“Set the believers an example in speech and conduct,
in love, in faith, in purity.”

(1Timothy 4:12)

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Twelth Sunday in Ordinary Time 2017

Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time
“Can you not buy two sparrows for a penny? And yet not one falls to the ground without your Father knowing…So there is no need to be afraid; you are worth more than hundreds of sparrows.”
Matthew 10, 26-33

One of the very clear messages that Jesus gives in today’s gospel is that we really matter to God. If God cares for the sparrows, God will care much more for us, who are worth more than hundreds of sparrows.

I have to admit that I’m really not an admirer of Facebook. That’s because I struggle to use it, and, besides, it takes too much time. However, I discovered recently that the chief operations officer of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg is rated as one of the most visible and successful women in corporate America. Just three years ago, her husband, Dave, died of a heart attack while they were holidaying together in Mexico. In April this year, a book Sheryl Sandberg co-authored with psychologist, Adam Grant was published. The book is entitled: Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy, and is an account of how she and her two children – a 7-year-old daughter and a 10-year-old son – dealt with their grief and loss. Early in the book, Sandberg, reflecting on the inability of friends to offer comfort or even acknowledge Dave’s death, had this to say:
“People continually avoided the subject. I went to a close friend’s house for dinner, and she and her husband made small talk the entire time. I listened, mystified, keeping my thoughts to myself. I got emails from friends asking me to fly to their cities to speak at their events without acknowledging that travel might be more difficult for me now. Oh, it’s just an overnight? Sure, I’ll see if Dave can come back to life and put the kids to bed. I ran into friends at local parks who talked about the weather. Yes! The weather has been weird with all this rain and death.
Many people who had not experienced loss, even some very close friends, didn’t know what to say to me or my kids. Their discomfort was palpable, especially in contrast to our previous ease. As the elephant in the room went unacknowledged, it started acting up, trampling over my relationships. If friends didn’t ask how I was doing, did that mean they didn’t care? My friend and co-author Adam Grant, a psychologist, said he was certain that people wanted to talk about it but didn’t know how. I was less sure. Friends were asking, “How are you?” but I took this as more of a standard greeting than a genuine question. I wanted to scream back, “My husband just died, how do you think I am?” I didn’t know how to respond to pleasantries. Aside from that, how was the play, Mrs. Lincoln? (Remember, Abraham Lincoln was assassinated at the theatre.)
…Until we acknowledge it, the elephant is always there. By ignoring it, those in pain isolate themselves and those who could offer comfort create distance instead. Both sides need to reach out. Speaking with empathy and honesty is a good place to start.” Sheryl Sandberg & Adam Grant, Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy, Penguin Random House, New York, April 2017

Posted by superadmin in Sunday Readings Reflection, Uncategorised

About

About Catalyst for Renewal

In July 1994, ten Catholics met over lunch in a private house in Sydney to talk about renewal in the Church. The discussion continued over the second half of 1994, so that by the end of the year the name Catalyst for Renewal had been chosen and our mission stated in the following way:

“We are believers who are attempting to establish a forum for conversation within the Catholic Church of Australia Our aim is to prompt open exchanges among the community of believers, mindful of the diversity of expressions of faith in contemporary Australia. This springs explicitly from the spirit of pope John XXIII and Vatican II: “Let there be unity in what is necessary, freedom in what is unsettled, and charity in any case.” (Gaudium et Spes, n.92)”

Catalyst for Renewal was incorporated as an Incorporated Association in 1996.

Over the subsequent years, Catalyst for Renewal has successfully pursued its mission, establishing forums for conversation including:

  • Spirituality in the Pub (initiated at Paddington in Sydney in 1995);
  • The Mix (1996 – 20nn);
  • Catalyst Dinners;
  • Forums, including Bishop’s Forums;
  • Q & A in the Crypt;
  • Reflection Mornings and Retreats.

Within Catalyst, we use the word ‘conversation’ with specific meaning. As expressed by Michael Whelan SM, “That meaning is derived from the word’s etymology, which it shares with two Latin words, conversari, meaning “to dwell,” “to keep company with” or “to abide,” and convertere, meaning “to change,” “to convert,” “to alter,” “to refresh” or “to turn.” The first of these two movements – the conversari – is a movement towards the other. I, as a given subject take the initiative and make a choice to be with you in some positive and creative way. The second – convertere – is a movement towards myself. I, as a given subject, open myself to discovery and change in and through this encounter… Our future depends on our ability to engage each other in conversation.”

Today Catalyst continues to support over 20 SIP venues across NSW and Victoria, Dinners, Forums and other opportunities for spiritual reflection and conversation. We also auspice the Rosemary Goldie Lecture. Information about our activities will be found throughout this website.

 

Michael Whelan SM, 2007, WAYS OF KNOWING: CLEARING THE GROUND FOR CONVERSATION
http://www.acu.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/92536/Ways_of_Knowing.pdf

Profile of Catalyst, date unknown
https://catalystforrenewal.org.au/profile-of-catalyst/

 

Financial and Operating Information:

CfR_Annual Accounts_2020

CfR Management Report 2020

CfR_Annual Accounts_2019

CfR Management_Report 2019

CfR_Audited Accounts 2018