Fire of World Youth Day 2008 set to be re-ignited in Sydney

27 May 2009

By The Record

Congress to re-ignite Australia one year on.


The Sydney Congress Embracing the New Evangelisation (SCENE) is set to engage the whole Catholic Church around Australia at St Mary’s Cathedral in the harbour city from July 18-26.
The event, timed to fall one year on from World Youth Day, has been designed to offer an environment for formation, teaching, testimony and practical insight for proclaiming the Gospel and living the life of Grace today, and will bring together a range of speakers from home and abroad.
It is a Congress for teachers, parishes, families, priests and religious, catechists, young people, communities, movements, retirees and all individuals.
You will see from the Program that the Congress consists of plenary Sessions in the Cathedral during the mornings, with a range of evangelisation events taking place in the city during the afternoons and evenings.
All Catholics of the Archdiocese regardless of age are invited to register as delegates for the whole or part of the week.
SCENE will open with a Family Congress on July 19, starting with Mass at 10.30am, lunch and workshops in Philip Park, concluding with an act of Consecration to the Blessed Mother in the Cathedral at 3pm. 
All the way from New Jersey, the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal (to which Fr Stan Fortuna belongs) will showcase their Catholic Underground apostolate which is taking America by storm as well as Ireland and the UK. 
The first part of the evening is Eucharistic Adoration and begins with Vespers (Evening Prayer).
The Holy hour ends with solemn Benediction. The second part showcases Catholic artists and musicians.
Finally, the evening ends as we began with the prayer of the Church, Night Prayer.
Groups of at least several parishioners from within a parish will be encouraged to register as delegates, so that they can be a presence within the congress and then discuss it with their parish.
A Vocations Expo, in the style of the one held during WYD, will be held in Martin Place, Monday to Wednesday, 10am–7pm, during the Congress. 
Perth-based Franciscan Friar of Mary Immaculate, Fr Joseph McShane will feature as a workshop leader in the afternoons on the topic of “Our Lady and the New Evangelisation” and “Media & Evangelisation/New Evangelisation through the Media (radio, internet, media)”.   A live radio broadcast of his radio station “Gate of Heaven” Catholic Radio, 107.9FM Radio (Perth), will be held from Martin Place in Sydney.
Organisers say that this is a timely opportunity for all of us to witness to Christ in the City.
“Sydney will once again witness the energy and excitement that brought the city alive during World Youth Day, as Catholics from across Australia are encouraged to join in the “Christ in the City” evangelisation events in the CBD proclaiming love, joy and above all, Christ,” organisers said.
Sydney Auxiliary Bishop Julian Porteous said that the Congress represents the next phase of the Evangelisation plan for Sydney and Australia to capitalise on the graces received during WYD08. 
Communities and movements involved in evangelisation works are encouraged to help delegates with practical hands-on experience of evangelisation during the week as well as gain the opportunity of learning from other delegates from Australia and abroad.
“World Youth day has significantly shaped the future of the Church in Australia and SCENE offers an opportunity to continue inspiring others in the great commission of Christ to proclaim the Gospel.  We should have a very fruitful and challenging interchange in the Congress’ afternoon workshops,” he said.
For more information contact Elizabeth Peoples on 9390-5996, Fr Richard Aladics on 0439 410 612 or visit