I am the Bread of Life

19th Sunday Reflection

The link between bread and life is obvious. In the Middle East, bread was an essential part of every meal. But food is also associated with the idea of living forever. Greek philosophy held that the gods had material existence, like humans, but lived forever because they were incorruptible. They enjoyed this state of incorruptibility because they were able to feed on ambrosia, the nectar of the gods, which enabled them to overcome the usual forces that dissipate atoms causing material things to decay. So incorruptibility, or immortality, is a divine quality; only the gods are immortal. When considering human existence, the Jewish author of the Book of Wisdom presents an interpretation of the two creation accounts in Genesis 1-3.

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Who can satisfy human appetites?

18th Sunday Reflection

Appetites are good things. Sometimes in Catholic history they have been regarded as something to be suppressed, but actually they tell us what we need as human beings. Our appetite for food and drink is a good thing and must be satisfied or our bodies will collapse through malnutrition. Our appetite for affection and acceptance is a good thing and must be satisfied or we disintegrate socially. If we are fortunate, we will find companionship which satisfies that appetite.

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From the Dean

Change ahead for St Patrick's Cathedral Parramatta Parish

My dear fellow parishioners,

After six years here as Dean and Administrator, Bishop Anthony has appointed me as the Parish Priest of St Finbar’s Church, Glenbrook. The appointment is to take effect from 16th August.

Fr John McSweeney, currently the Parish Priest of St Finbar’s, has been appointed by the Bishop to take my place as the new Dean and Administrator.

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The hand of the Lord feeds us

17th Sunday Gospel reflection

Today we are reminded of God’s providence. We live in a world that feeds us and shelters us and supplies us with everything that we need to grow and to thrive, and all of this comes to us from the hand of God. It is usually when we are in desperate straits that we become painfully conscious of our dependence on God, but this dependence is always there. God does not merely intervene when we are helpless; God's providence operates in our lives at all times.

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Statement of the Bishop of Parramatta

STATEMENT OF THE BISHOP OF PARRAMATTA TO THE PEOPLE OF THE DIOCESE

My Dear People,

Today’s readings open with the words: “Doom for the shepherds who allow my flock to be destroyed and scattered – it is the Lord who speaks!” (Jer 23:1). They are challenging words to hear at any time, but in our current context they echo forcefully around our parish churches.

We were all shocked by the terrible story of ‘Fr F’ reported recently on Four Corners. It has resulted in public scrutiny of his behaviour while serving in his home Diocese of Armidale, of his time in our own Diocese of Parramatta, and of the adequacy of the Church’s response to allegations about him. It has reignited public condemnation of clerical abuse and criticism of the way it has sometimes been mishandled.

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