Weeding the garden in South Brisbane


On Saturday, I weeded my lawn. I had let it go for a long time, and during the winter it had turned into a field of lush, green onion weed. Yech. If I had left it any later it would have flowered. I understand that once this happens, the bulbs begin to multiply or something. Any way, a stitch in time saves nine, as they say. Better to be merciful and pull up the tares now, so that the lawn has a chance to grow come Spring.

Not withstanding Jesus’ own advice to leave the tares growing among the wheat until the last judgement, the weeding metaphor relates well to the pastoral ministry. Deal with a problem now, and deal with it properly, because if you leave it for later it will only come back ten times bigger to bite you.

It is a lesson that Archbishop Bathersby might well be pondering at this time.

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See further:

St Mary’s South Brisbane

The Courier Mail: Future of St Mary’s South Brisbane Church in doubt

Letter to AD2000

Cathnews article – which quotes a parishioner rather disingenuously saying that a “very right wing parishioner came and was offended by…an image of a praying monk which they mistook as a Buddha”

However, from St Mary’s own blogsite:From St Mary’s Blog site

MINDFULNESS MEDITATION GROUP In the Buddhist tradition of the Most Venerable Thich Nhat Hanh (Thây), Practices on Monday evenings in the Church from 6.45pm till 8.30pm. Contact Lyndall a/h on 33001855 for further info

Hmmm. So was it a “Buddha” or a “praying monk”? But wasn’t the Buddha a “praying monk”?

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More thoughts…

Isn’t this a rather strange way of handling the situation? I mean, effectively, His Grace appears to be suggesting (in the kindest possible way) that he intends to excommunicate the entire parish. And he says this in a letter, for goodness sake; a letter which doesn’t really spell out the procedure from here on in.

Now, I know this is really none of my business, but if you were the bishop, wouldn’t you simply move quickly to appoint a new orthodox parish priest? Nb. according to the letter, the current parish priest is in fact simply an administrator, not the “parish priest” as has been continuously said; and it appears that this administrator has permitted a priest from another diocese to effectively run the show. The current administrator has been in the parish for 28 years. A recipe for disaster. Long pastorates can sometimes lead to ensconced idiosyncrasies, whereas regular changes of pastors generally keeps a parish more conscious of the fact that it belongs to a diocesan church and is not a self-contained community. It was the same situation in Redfern in Sydney. Archbishop Pell dealt with that – although not with entirely happy consequeces to be sure.

Still. Have a look at that church building. Isn’t there going to be property issues if in fact the parish as a whole does accept the Archbishop’s ultimatum? And what will orthodox Catholic parishioners (those who are still there) be told to do? Travel elsewhere?

It all begs too many questions. I expect that we will hear more.

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