Pope Francis and the challenges of the church today

Bishop Vincent Long Van Nguyen OFMConv, bishop of Parramatta, delivered this address at the Annual Ann D. Clark Lecture given at Penrith Leagues Club on August 18 this year. Bishop Long Van Nguyen has laid out a vision for an inclusive compassionate church in Parramatta diocese. 

Paper cutout of an inclusive communityFriends. What a difference the Holy Spirit can make! When Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI announced his resignation in early 2013, we were adrift like I was adrift in the Pacific Ocean during my epic voyage. Why? Because in 600 years, there had not been a papal resignation. There had not been any hint of it prior to the announcement that surprised everyone, even the cardinals who had been summoned to the Vatican for the consistory. They were absolutely flummoxed and speechless. Holy smoke and holy chaos! The Barque of Peter was truly launched into uncharted waters. We Catholics felt we were in dire straits.

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