Catholic men’s seminar launches to encourage all men in the faith

05 Aug 2021

By The Record

Launched 31 July, all dioceses across Australia are invited to participate in the 2021 Australian Catholic Men’s Gathering programme focussed on Saint Joseph.

The online conference began with a pre-recorded introductory session, three pre-recorded sessions, and a final commissioning, all available on YouTube.

A collaborative initiative of the Bishops Commission for Evangelisation, Laity and Ministry and the Bishops Commission for Life, Family and Public Engagement, the event follows the inaugural national Catholic Men’s Gathering held in August 2020.

Established to meet new COVID-19 norms, the initiative promotes small, local hosting sites or online gatherings, avoiding travel or large events. Utilising the online resources provided, gatherings will take place between July and October, or even later in the year, as the pandemic requirements permit.

Wollongong Diocese Office for Renewal and Evangelisation Director Jude Hennessy and menALIVE co-founder Robert Falzon provide the introduction with a recap of the 2020 event and an introduction to the material presented in the remaining sessions of the event. Photo: Sourced.

Wollongong Diocese Office for Renewal and Evangelisation Director Jude Hennessy and menALIVE co-founder Robert Falzon provided the introduction with a recap of the 2020 event and an introduction to the material presented in the remaining sessions of the event.

Archbishop Christopher Prowse, chair of the Bishops Commission for Evangelisation Laity and Ministry, said there was great anticipation building for the event.

“Whether you are a husband, father, brother, son, uncle, grandfather or friend, this event seeks to encourage all men in the faith and in their prayer life,” His Grace said.

“There has been strong interest in the event from right across the country, and I’m looking forward to joining with a group of men in my own archdiocese in fellowship and prayer as we participate in the gathering.”

Tomasz Juszczak looks at what it means to be men of God and how blokes can live that out in our lives. Photo: Sourced.

Tomasz Juszczak looks at what it means to be a Man of God and how – as men – we can live that out in our lives.

Using St Joseph as the ultimate model, Mr Juszczak shows how Jesus’ earthly father encompasses the fullness of what it means to be a man of God.

Mr Juszczak also shares his personal story, the successes and struggles of trying to live this more genuinely in his life. There are also some straightforward, practical tips on what we can do to more closely respond to God’s call of becoming men after His own heart.

The director of evangelisation for the Diocese of Broken Bay said the presentations built upon the Year of St Joseph and its focus on forming men of faith.

“As a man forced to flee his home, a man who faced questions about his place in the world, a man who toiled diligently in his work life and above all a man who trusted in God, St Joseph provides us with a wonderful model for our own lives,” he said.

“The Year of St Joseph is the perfect time for all men to participate in this event, which I believe will inspire them to a deeper faith and help them to grow in Christian character.”

Tim Davis shares the challenges facing men of faith to become men of service, as they try to navigate themselves and their families through this secular world towards a deeper relationship with God and authentic service and love of Him and our neighbour. Photo: Sourced.

Tim Davis shares the challenges facing men of faith and to be a Man of Service as they try to navigate themselves and their families through this secular world towards a deeper relationship with God and authentic service and love of Him and our neighbour.

“Through sharing his experiences and some strategies that he has learnt from other good role models in his life, Tim challenges us to respond honestly to the questions: Am I truly open to God’s will? What am I doing daily to give God opportunities to speak to me, nourish me and direct my service?” Mr Davis questioned.

Shayne Bennett explores what it means to be men of character as each of us is fearfully and wonderfully made, but our full potential as men of character is unleashed through a personal encounter with Jesus Christ and an active surrender to the Holy Spirit. Photo: Sourced.

Shayne Bennett explores what it means to be a Man of Character as each of us is fearfully and wonderfully made, but our full potential as men of character is unleashed through a personal encounter with Jesus Christ and an active surrender to the Holy Spirit.

“We know we’re not perfect, but don’t be discouraged by your own failures or limitations. We draw on the grace that God gives us. As men, we have to learn to face our weaknesses depending on God’s mercy and strength,” Mr Bennett expressed.

“Look at St Peter! Look at St Paul! These were not perfect men – they became men of incredible character – often through suffering, through making mistakes, through learning to be obedient – but always with the help of the Holy Spirit. The same Holy Spirit lives in us and wants to do a great work in and through us.”

A range of materials to assist in preparing for the event are available online, including promotional resources, a novena, and a hosting guide with several suggested programmes for hosting sites to use.

For more information about the event, to register, or to watch the videos, visit: https://nce.catholic.org.au/catholicmen