HARRISBURG, Pa. – Most Rev. Ronald W. Gainer, Bishop of Harrisburg, will celebrate a Mass to close the Diocesan phase of the Synod on Synodality at 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 29, at Holy Name of Jesus Church, Harrisburg. During the Mass, Bishop Gainer will be presented with the synthesis of responses from the faithful on the Synod topics.
The Synod opened in Rome on October 9, 2021, followed by the opening in each diocese on October 17 of that year. This process is calling together all the people of God – clergy, religious and laity – to listen, dialogue, discern and pray. The goal of the Synod is not to create a new pastoral plan, but rather to be present with each other, learn from each other, and grow closer to the Lord and His Church.
The Diocesan phase of the Synod process concluded this spring, with a synthesis of the opinions, thoughts, and prayers of the faithful being sent to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The next phase, the continental phase, will begin in September, leading up to the end of the Synod with the XVI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops at the Vatican in October 2023.
In addition to the closing of the Diocesan phase of the Synod, Bishop Gainer will also honor several lay Catholics with the Lorica Award. This award recognizes lay members for their exemplary service to the local Church, who have “bound to your heart” the strength of the Triune God through integrity of faith and generosity of service. The Lorica Awards were established in 2019, but have been delayed for the past two years because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The award derives its name from the Latin word for breastplate, which is the name given to the famous prayer composed by our Diocesan patron, Saint Patrick.
All are invited to attend the Mass in person or join us via live stream on the Diocesan YouTube channel, www.YouTube.com/hbgdiocese.
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The Catholic Diocese of Harrisburg was established on March 3, 1868. It covers 15 counties in south and central Pennsylvania, is home to 89 parishes and 35 Catholic schools, and has nearly 230,000 Catholics.