Perth Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB has called on Perth Catholics to reflect on the question of our own fidelity, in celebrating the Mass for Deceased Priests and Clergy.
Speaking Thursday 23 November at St Mary’s Cathedral, Archbishop Costelloe referenced the first reading from the Book of Maccabees.
“To our ears, sometimes it might sound a little bit extreme some of the things we read about what happened during this terrible time in the history of the Jewish people,” Archbishop Costelloe said, referring to the story of Mattathias and his sons.
“But I think we’re being invited to reflect on the quality of fidelity and to ask ourselves – particularly as the liturgical year comes to a close, and we celebrate the Feast of Christ the King on Sunday 26 November, and then the following Sunday 3 December, we begin the season of Advent – to reflect on the question of our own fidelity as we in our own particular situations with the complexities of our own lives, try our best to live faithfully to all that God is asking of us,” he said.
Archbishop Costelloe was joined for the 12.10pm Mass by Auxiliary Bishop Don Sproxton, Vicar General, the Very Rev Fr Peter Whitely VG, Episcopal Vicar for Clergy, the Very Rev Fr Minh-Thuy Nguyen, Cathedral Dean, Rev Dr Sean Fernandez and several other fellow clergy from across the Archdiocese.
Archbishop Costelloe continued by emphasising that as we reflect particularly on those priests who in the last 12 months have died, but also on the long, long story of bishops, priests and deacons in this Archdiocese, we’re also invited to reflect on this quality of fidelity.
“And to give thanks to God for all of those bishops and priests and deacons, who, in spite of their own frailties, and struggles and difficulties, were able to be faithful, and faithful to the end,” he said.
Archbishop Costelloe then invited those present to ask themselves, ‘What is it that God is asking of me, in my situation, at this particular moment, in my journey of life?’ and ‘How can I be faithful to what God is asking of me?’
“Even when we sometimes confront the reality of our own infidelity, it’s important for us to remember that though we may at times be unfaithful, God is always faithful,” Archbishop Costelloe reinforced.
“That’s why every time we gather to celebrate the Eucharist, we begin by acknowledging our sins and asking for the Lord’s mercy. It’s a prayer that we know we can always make with great confidence, because God never refuses his mercy and his pardon and his compassion for those who ask for it,” he concluded.