Disciples in Mission

11-07-2021Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

As you may know, our parish is in Phase 7 of the Archdiocese of Boston’s Pastoral Planning Process called Disciples in Mission. With a hiatus necessitated by the Covid-19 pandemic, our parish has recently begun working on the development of a local – parish pastoral plan to be submitted eventually to Cardinal Sean for his approval.

Disciples in Mission is focused on building up and fortifying the ministerial and material infrastructure of our parishes so that stronger evangelization can take place, while accommodating the demographic, financial and vocational challenges present within parishes. With more vital, stable and mission oriented parish communities, our Archdiocese will be in a better position to fulfill Jesus’ Great Commission to “Go and make disciples.”

Pope John Paul II, in his apostolic letter, Novo Millenio Ineunte, at the close of the Jubilee Year 2000, proposed that holiness be a special focus in formulating a pastoral plan. “To place pastoral planning under the heading of holiness is a choice filled with consequences. It implies the conviction that, since Baptism is a true entry into the holiness of God through incorporation into Christ and the indwelling of his Spirit, it would be a contradiction to settle for a life of mediocrity, marked by a minimalist ethic and a shallow religiosity.” (emphasis added)

With the understanding that maintaining things as they are is not possible, both structurally and spiritually, our global Church is calling for a renewal that necessitates a change in the way every Catholic approaches the practice of their faith. Each of us will need to examine how we can grow in holiness and be more faithful to Jesus’ call to “make disciples,” i.e., draw more people to Him and His Church.

Here at Holy Family, we’ve brought together representative lay leaders under the direction of staff member, Jeanne Cregan, to work with me in developing a pastoral plan for our parish with these imperatives in mind. We’ve already begun the process of consultation, prayerful reflection and discernment as we examine various aspects of our parish life. This process is expected to take many months.

And so, I ask you to join me in praying for a fruitful outcome of this process that will, with God’s help, revitalize the nature of how we go about living our Catholic faith, individually and communally. Keeping these goals in mind, if you would like to share your insights about areas of strength, challenge and opportunity that exist here at Holy Family, please send them along to Jeanne Cregan at jcregan@holyfamilyduxbury.org. Thank you in advance for your openness and cooperation.