01 Jun 2021
Prayer campaign for Plenary Council
The Southern Cross | June 2021
Australian Catholics are being invited to join a month-long prayer campaign in the lead-up to the first assembly of the Fifth Plenary Council of Australia, starting on October 3.
Launched on the Feast of Pentecost last month, Fan the Flame will involve engaging with Scripture, papal writings and documents prepared for the Plenary Council to bring a focus to their prayers for the October assembly and beyond.
Due to COVID-19, the first Plenary Council assembly, originally planned to be held in Adelaide, will now be conducted in a multi-modal format across Australia, combining online and face-to-face aspects, with the second assembly being held in July 2022 in Sydney.
Perth Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB, President of the Plenary Council, said prayer has been central to the journey of the Council over the past three years.
The Fan the Flame campaign invites “prayer partners” to invoke the Holy Spirit’s ongoing guidance.
“Drawing upon the wisdom of a national liturgy committee and the powerful experience of local prayer campaigns, Fan the Flame provides resources for individuals or groups of any size and type to pray for the Council,” Archbishop Costelloe said.
The campaign material has resources for each week from Pentecost until the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time – the final weekend before the first assembly of the Council.
The materials include multimedia files, weekly reflections, bulletin notices and suggested musical choices.
There are also decals to allow dioceses or parishes with Plenary Council candles to renew the candle’s appearance.
Centre for Liturgy Perth Director Sr Kerry Willison RSM, who is leading the national liturgy committee, said while the Plenary Council prayer in use since 2018 retains its significance to the journey, Fan the Flame resources find inspiration from a range of sources.
“There is such rich material being developed during the life of the Plenary Council, and we have seen how Scripture, the popes and other Catholic wisdom is shaping the way forward,” she said.
“We hope that, through these resources, all people will find ways to enter more deeply into their own prayerful preparation for this national event, and to pray for those with special roles during the Council assemblies.”
Access the Fan the Flame material at www.plenarycouncil.catholic.org.au/fantheflame/