Meeting day for priests

Meeting day for priests
Meeting day for priests

Tuesday May 14, 2024, at the invitation of Mgr Philippe Ballot, the priests of the diocese met at the major seminary of Metz for a meeting to reflect on the organization of ecclesial life.

By opening the morning’s work, after prayer, Mgr Ballot wanted to thank the priests for their support during the interim period he provided in Strasbourg. Looking back on this period, he highlights the similarities that unite the two Concordat dioceses, and expresses his hope of continuing interdiocesan work on certain issues. He also wanted to highlight the pilgrimage of young people to Lourdes, and the support that we must put in place to help them strengthen and testify to their faith.

The Presbyteral Council considered a new diocesan organization of governance, mainly around the “intermediate levels”. Father Patrick Bence, vice-president of the Presbyteral Council, who presented the subject, underlined the spirit of the reflection: an outgoing, missionary Church, close to the field.

The governance structure would become more synodal, with the bishop coming to meet the territories. No new structure will be born, the circumscriptions will only be tools for the bishop’s visit. The exchanges and feedback will crystallize during these episcopal visits, while retaining a purpose of encouragement and comfort. The bishop plans to spend two days each year in each of these new circumscriptions, which brings together between three and six archpriests.

A debate, mainly around governance, allowed the priests to express their questions in this area. Mgr Ballot defended the proposal, indicating that it was above all a new way of walking together. On the subject of governance, he indicated that he was still thinking, in order to be more adjusted to current issues.

After a break, several information was given on a new version of the itinerary towards the first communion, the Mission Congress and the Pastors according to my Heart training.

The morning ended with a meal together, before the archpriests met again and continued this working day.

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