The Pope has sent the following message to the Australian Church in relation to the forthcoming Plenary Council of lay people and Bishops about the future of the Church in Australia:

I extend cordial greetings and prayerful good wishes as the Catholic community in Australia joins in prayer to launch the immediate preparation of the forthcoming 2020 Plenary Council. Upon all taking part in the preparatory process, I invoke the Holy Spirit’s gifts of wisdom, harmony and openness to the Lord’s will for the future of his pilgrim Church in the Country. It is my hope that through patient dialogue and faith filled discernment, the conciliar journey will confirm the Catholics in Australia in a spirit of fraternal unity and missionary discipleship, thus enabling them to be a leaven of holiness, justice and reconciliation in today’s rapidly changing society. As a pledge of the sustaining grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, I willingly impart my Apostolic Blessing.