'Be confident... risk new things...' (Closing of Year for Consecrated Life)


All the bishops serving in Botswana, South Africa and Swaziland gathered this morning at the Sacred Heart Cathedral (Pretoria). It was the official opening of our plenary session (which started on Thursday), the launching of the "Catholic Education Board" and the closing of the year of consecrated life. The Cathedral was packed to capacity with female and male religious from the Metropolitan Provinces of Johannesburg and Pretoria. Mass was presided by Arch. W. Slattery OFM while Bp K. Dowling CSsR gave the homily.


Following the message of the above banner inviting all to embrace the future with hope, Bp Dowling's concluded his homily with words taken from Saint Angela Merici:

“Do something, 
get moving, 
be confident, 
risk new things, 
stick with it, 
get on your knees, 
then be ready for big surprises!” 

Arch. Slattery OFM then invited all to light their candles and renew their consecration with these words:

"Gracious God,
in joyful celebration of the year
of consecrated life in the Church
and in remembrance of our religious profession
we renew the vows of Poverty, Celibacy and Obedience
which we made in the day of our first profession.

We do so in gratitude
for the life to which you have called us
blessing you for its fruitfulness
and asking pardon for our failures.

Let this renewal strengthen our faith in you.
Increase our hope in your promises,
and depend our love for all our brothers and sisters
especially those who are most in need
within the whole of your beloved creation"

Mass was followed by a lively "bring and share" of religious and bishops.

(Hope to soon be able to share both the homily and the words of Fr O'Connor at the launching of the Catholic Board of Education)
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Bishop of the Diocese of Manzini (Swaziland)

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