Synod Working Party

Synod Working Party

‘The members of this preparatory commission are chosen by the Bishop from amongst the clergy and other faithful who are distinguished by their pastoral prudence and by their professional competence and who, in so far as possible, reflect the various charisms and ministries of the People of God. Some members should be expert in the disciplines of Canon Law and Sacred Liturgy.’ (Instr. III, B, 1)

Its tasks are principally:

  • to assist the Bishop in matters pertaining to the organisation and preparation of the Synod
  • in drawing up and publishing the synodal Directory 
  • in the designation of the synodal members and in his determining the questions to be proposed for synodal deliberation

Bishop Wright in consultation with the Council for Mission constituted the Synod Working Party as the Preparatory Commission in 2018. The members of the Synod Working Party are:

  • Teresa Brierley (Moderator)
  • Helen Belcher
  • Gary Christensen
  • Sr Patricia Egan
  • Bernadette Gibson
  • Lawrie Hallinan 
  • Fr Geoff Mulhearn 
  • Helene O’Neill
  • Michael O’Connor
  • Ben van der Wijingaart

Supported by:

  • Alyson Segrott (Pastoral Ministries)
  • Jenny Harris (Pastoral Ministries)
  • Brooke Cross (Communications)
  • Sarah James (Communications)

The following Focus Groups were established assist with the Planning and Research phase:

Foundational Guiding Principles

To develop a spiritually inspiring document that will reflect the vision of how we the Church of Maitland-Newcastle will work together to further Jesus’ mission in today’s world.

Discernment of Data

To process data relevant to the Plenary Council and Diocesan Synod that has been generated thus far within and beyond the diocese, and from that data develop recommendations for discernment by the diocesan community and in time by the Synod. 

Diocesan Directory

To compile and review all of the documentation that has provided direction for the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle since the last Diocesan Synod of 1992/93, and recommend the ongoing ratification or abrogation of that documentation.

Governance Guiding Principles and Documentation

To develop clear documentation concerning the governance structures of the diocese, parishes and agencies and the principles on which the diocesan community is governed both canonically and legally. There is a need to honour the principles of synodality, transparency, inclusivity, accountability and stewardship. 

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