An in-depth study of the whole Bible over six terms. Presented by Bethany Lutheran Church and supported by the Sunbury Christian Ministers Fellowship. See brochure at Welcome Desk for full details and registration or contact Pastor Jim Pietsch 9743 4643.


Course over six Tuesdays from 13 April at 6.00pm to 8.00pm, Thomas Carr Centre, 278 Victoria Parade, East Melbourne.
Cost $85.
Presenter: Fr. Chris Monaghan C.P.—a Biblical scholar. Enquiries—9926 5761.



BLUEPRINT is a series of workshop days organised by the Archdiocesan Office for Youth. The workshops seek to inspire and support leaders in youth ministry – be it in parishes, schools or communties. Spread throughout the year, each workshop day will focus on the various elements of ministry, from formation to resource sharing, recruiting and networking with other youth leaders.

Our office recognises that there are plenty of people out in parishes, schools and communities who work tirelessly to involve their peers in the life and mission of the Church. Sometimes it can be a challenging road ahead! Therefore, we hope that youth leaders who attend these sessions can walk away feeling refreshed, re-energised and motivated to continue in their ministry.

Saturday 27 March from 10am – 4pm

Get more info from the Archdiocesan Office for Youth website here.


This Program is for those in parish ministries and other settings to enable them to learn more about their faith and to assist them in their Christian ministries. Brochures of courses beginning in February are at the Welcome Desk.

The entire life of the disciple is marked by learning and growth. Life long growth in faith is an essential Characteristic of adult catholic life. John Paul 11


First Week

Several weeks ago on Tuesday night some of our parishioners drove to Kyneton and joined fifty to sixty more from Kyneton, Woodend, Romsey, Lancefield, and Castlemaine, including the new parish priest of Castlemaine, Fr Arsenio Tuazon, in St Mary’s Hall to listen to Bishop Tim Costelloe.

Bishop Tim Costelloe sounded pleased to be back in front of a room full of new (some of us less new than others) Theology students.

He spoke about himself a little and then was into the night’s subject starting with “What is Theology” which he explained as “Faith seeking Understanding”.  That raised the question (lots of questions in Theology but lots of answers as well) of “Understanding What?” Bishop Tim named the fundamental questions as:

  • Who is God?
  • Who is Jesus?
  • Who am I?
  • What about the Church?

Before heading further into the subject we heard about the Mystery and the Language that is used to try to give meaning to the Mystery, and also about the three ground rules or basic tests that any proposition or idea must pass. They must be founded in Jesus of Nazareth, reflect our Spirit-guided journey of faith, and be true to the reality of our world.

Having set the foundations, we moved on to “Who is God?” and heard how we can glean much about God in the scriptures we call the Old Testament. Bishop Tim took the first eleven chapters of Genesis, and begining with just the first paragraph showed us how much could be learned about God from this small beginning and even more from the rest of the creation stories. How God is a God who creates, who makes things, who gives life and who is a self-communicating God. A God who is bountiful and generous. A God who is close to us and who sets boundaries and is often, or maybe usually, misunderstood. A God of forgiveness. We looked at the God of Moses, Isaac, and Jacob and the God of some of the Prophets. We learned that the God of Micah was a God of Justice. Isaiah writes of a mighty and transcendent God. Hosea writes of a loving God acting as a loving husband to Israel, his unfaithful wife. And finally, of the Faithful God of Jeremiah. And then to the final and ultimate revelation of God, Jesus.

If you knew me, you would know my Father also.      Jn 8:20

That is the challenge for us as Jesus reveals to us, through the scriptures, the Triune God, and more. We now move into the question “Who is Jesus?” What do we know of Jesus from the scriptures? Who wrote the Gospels? Why?

Second Week

The second week has now arrived amid great storms and strong winds which kept many away from Kyneton but for those of us who were able to get to the hall there was much anticipation as to what Bishop Tim Costelloe would lay out for us.

Bishop Tim started the night refreshing our memories with what had been discussed on the previous Tuesday night, some of which can be found in the text above this. Tonight we continued where we had left of with the subject of “Jesus as revealer of the Triune God”. We heard again an anecdote from St Augustine on the understanding of the Trinity. To quote Bishop Tim’s remembering:

The Trinity is easy to understand, as long as you remember that one doesn’t necessarily mean one, three doesn’t necessarily mean three, and persons doesn’t necessarily mean persons.

So the Trinity can be thought of as a communion, as an interdependent community. This interdependence is stressed by the words we use for the Persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In other words there can be no Father without a Son and no Son without a Father. The word Spirit in Hebrew and Aramaic is generally feminine so it can be seen how that which was revealed by Jesus was developed over the first several centuries to become the Mystery that we now believe.

Now we were ready to tackle the question “Who is Jesus”.

Now when Jesus came into the parts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?”
They said, “Some say John the Baptizer, some, Elijah, and others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.”
He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”
Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven.” Matt 16:15

Bishop Tim led us to see how St Peter could be so right about Jesus and at the same time be so wrong that Jesus called him “Satan”. Jesus had said that the son of man must go to Jerusalem and be handed over to be killed but Simon Peter had protested. This led to a discussion on the significance of Jesus refering to himself as “the son of man” and nowhere refering to himself as “the Son of God”. It was pointed out that most scholars thought that the title was a reference to the book of Daniel which had four references. (It’s interesting that the scholars prefer Daniel with his four references but ignore Ezekiel with his eighty-six references to the phrase “son of man”)

We continued then with the Gospels. Who wrote them and why and when. I’m writing this from last night and having difficulties as although I remember the gist of it all and I write it down in order, various bits come to mind that must be out of sequence but anyone reading this will gain at least some of my own understanding of what was said and I know it will be different from everybody else’s recollection.

This is the “how” of the writing to some extent. The “who” may well come from popular attribution. Various collections attributed to different evangelists. The “why” was so that by reading the Gospels, we might come to believe. Bishop Tim took us through several of the parables of Jesus to show how it didn’t matter when they were told, or in what order, but were put together by the evangelist to show how, and I can’t remember The good Bishop’s exact words so I’ll use the words of Andrew Greely who is an author priest and sociologist,

It is not an exaggeration, then, but simply a literal interpretation of his parables to say that the God of Jesus is madly, insanely in love with his human creatures.

This then was about where the night ended and Bishop Tim said goodbye to us all and promised to try to do the next part at another time.


Due to the low numbers of those who signed up, the Life in the Eucharist program scheduled for next weekend has been cancelled. We thank Fr. Frank O’Dea of Box Hill and his team for their interest in us.

Why not leave a comment below and tell us what you would prefer. Whether having a seminar on Saturday as well as on Sunday is too hard for families in the parish due to all the taxi commitments with the children, or whether we should have set-up a different subject. This blog was set-up exactly so parishioners could give feedback and make comments on any subject they want. Here’s your chance to let us know exactly what you would like. Use a nom de plume and leave a comment.


Would you like to have a better understanding and appreciation of the Eucharistic celebration? L.I.T.E. (Life in the Eucharist) is an education program conducted by a team of Catholic men and women. It is a program pioneered by the Blessed Sacrament Fathers and Brothers. With the sponsorship and encouragement of the Blessed Sacrament Congregation, we invite you to the next Eucharistic experience on the weekend of 25/26 July 2009. As the program is continuous, we ask that you commit to attending both days to gain the full benefit. More information from the Blessed Sacrament Congregation website here.

Where: Our Lady of Mount Carmel School Multi-purpose Room
Dates: Sat 25 July Time: 9.30am to 4.00pm (Registration 8.45am to 9.30am). Sun 26 July Time: 9.30am to 2.30pm (Registration 9.l5am to 9.30am).
Cost: $10 for both days.

Registration forms are available at the Welcome Desk in St Anne’s Church and at the back of O.L.M.C. Church.

Bring your own lunch—tea/coffee provided.