PRAYER FOR THE APPOINTMENT OF OUR NEW BISHOP
Shepherding God you reveal your way of unfailing love in the image of the Good Shepherd who seeks the lost, shows compassion knows and is known by the sheep and lays down his life for them. We your people of Maitland-Newcastle are without a bishop to shepherd us. We ask that your Holy Spirit who moves through this great south land inspire the choice of our new Bishop empower his ‘yes’ and open our hearts in hospitality and love. We make this prayer through Christ our Lord, Amen. Our Lady of Perpetual Help pray for us Mary Mackillop of the Cross pray for us.
Reflecting on the ministry of a Bishop
On 22 November, Pope Francis shared eight ‘Beatitudes for Bishops” with the bishops of Italy.
Blessed is the bishop who makes poverty and sharing his lifestyle, because with his witness he builds the Kingdom of Heaven.
Blessed is the bishop who is not afraid to wet his face with tears, so that in them may be reflected the sorrow of the people, and the work of priests, and who finds God’ consolation in the embrace with those who suffer.
Blessed is the bishop who considers his ministry a service and not a power, who makes meekness his strength, gives everyone a right to a place in his heart, so as to give the promised land to the weak.
Blessed is the bishop who does not shut himself up in government buildings, who does not become a bureaucrat more attentive to statistics than to faces, to procedures than to stories, who seeks to fight alongside people for God’s dream of justice because the Lord, encountered in the silence of daily prayer, will nourish him.
Blessed is the bishop who has a heart for the misery of the world.
Who is not afraid to dirty his hands with the mud of the human soul in order to find the gold of God there, who is not scandalized by the sin and fragility of others because he knows his own misery, because the look of the Risen Crucified One will be the seal of infinite forgiveness.
Blessed is the bishop stays away from the duplicity of the heart, who avoids every ambiguous dynamic, who dreams of the good even in the midst of evil, because he will be able to rejoice in the face of God, finding His reflection in every puddle in the city of people.
Blessed is the bishop who works for peace, who walks along the path of reconciliation, who plants the seed of communion in the hearts of priests, who accompanies a divided society along the path of reconciliation, who takes every man and woman of goodwill by the hand to build fraternity: God will recognize him as his son.
Blessed is the bishop who is not afraid to go against the current for the Gospel, and hardens his face like Jesus going to Jerusalem, without letting himself be stopped by misunderstandings and obstacles because he knows that the Kingdom of God moves forth against the world.