Hope in the Future: Stage Four SpotlightTuesday 4th October 2022
As we embark on the fifth and final stage of our Hope in the Future programme, we take a look back at Stage 4 to celebrate the success stories of some of our parishes.
Stage 4 of Hope in the Future launched in October 2021, with a Holy Hour held in parishes across the diocese.
The Holy Hour provided a wonderful opportunity to renew our commitment to our relationship with the Lord Jesus, to give thanks to God for the generosity of the many volunteers who kept our churches safe during the pandemic, and to ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen our missionary endeavours.
Stage 4 of the Hope in the Future programme had a unique focus on “Proclaiming the Good News”, and during this time, people across the diocese have been working hard to live out this mission.
A key part of this stage was to develop links between our schools, parishes, and families. We also wanted to explore more about how we can better share the Good News with people we come into contact with through different celebrations, liturgies, and sacraments, as well as rebuilding our parish communities following the pandemic.
As such, parishes and schools right across the diocese have been working hard to achieve these goals and create closer, more interconnected communities.
One parish and school community has been working with Bolton FM to provide faith-themed content during Advent and Lent, in addition to celebrating the rich cultural diversity of the parish through special Masses and events.
Another parish has been reaching out to housebound parishioners and new neighbours, whilst another has held special events to welcome refugee families to the local community.
Many of our parishes have been working more closely with schools and families, particularly through revitalised Sacramental Programmes.
Now, our diocese moves to the fifth and final stage of the Hope in the Future programme, entitled “Sharing the Hope”, which launched in October 2022.
This fifth stage follows on from the work of Stage 4 by establishing our newly-connected parish communities as “beacons of hope” for the wider local area.
Our mission comes at a time when hope can be hard to find; when our world faces a wide range of troubling challenges, affecting those in our own diocese, as well as our brothers and sisters around the world.
However, we pray that our faith can be a light in the darkness, for all in our parishes and schools, as well as the wider community.
Bishop John said: “I would like to thank priests and parish teams for their ongoing dedication to Hope in the Future.
“As we embark on the fifth and final Stage of Hope in the Future, entitled ‘Sharing the Hope’, we turn our attention to putting our faith into action through caring for those most in need in our local area and caring for our common home.
“Stage 5 follows naturally on from Stage 4 where, as ambassadors for Christ, not only do we share Him in word but also by our good works and actions.
“I look forward to continuing this journey with all of you.
Stay with us, Lord, on Our Journey.”