Bishop presents icon from Egypt to Frank Sartor
From left, front: Fr Tadros El-Bakhoumi; Fr Tadros Samaan, vicar general of the diocese; Bishop Daniel and Frank Sartor; back: Fr Mikhail Mikhail, director of the St Mary and St Mina Coptic Orthodox College, and Fr Jonathon Ishak
By Marita Franklin
Pope John Paul II’s call on the young to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth is an important inspiration, the Archbishop of Sydney, Dr George Pell, tells the young people of Sydney in his Pastoral Letter to them for the feast of Pentecost.
Archbishop Pell has chosen leadership as the theme in this year’s letter, to be issued on Sunday, June 8.
The model of leadership he presents draws heavily on the example of Jesus at the Last Supper, the day before he was crucified, when he washed the feet of his disciples using a basin and towel.
“You call me Master and Lord, and rightly: so I am. If I, then, the Lord and Master, have washed your feet, you must wash each other’s feet” (John 13-15).
Dr Pell addresses some of the qualities leaders need.
These include following clear goals, being courageous and having “grace under pressure” to stand for good and against evil.
“Leaders must like and respect their peers and those they serve and lead,” he says. This means being able to listen, to understand problems so that there is effective two-way communication. All good leaders strive to enhance a genuine sense of community.”
On Christian leadership, the Pastoral Letter tells young people: “Jesus also calls us to a conversion of faith. The first and greatest commandment is to love the unseen God, our Father. It is the second great commandment to love our neighbour as ourselves” (Mark 12:31).
Pope John Paul II is presented as one of the great leaders of the present age, and his call on young people through World Youth Days to be the light of the world, the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13-14) is an important inspiration.
The archbishop recalls that the Pope, in his Jubilee 2000 message, called on the young to be “saints of the new millennium”.
Dr Pell urges young people to be leaders.
“Older Catholics, bishops, priests and religious, teachers and politicians, grandparents are proud of the vitality and enthusiasm of our young leaders,” he says.
“More are needed. We support and encourage you. We want you to do God’s will more effectively than we have. This would be our greatest consolation.”
In preparing his Pastoral Letter, Archbishop Pell consulted students in Catholic schools as well as young adults involved in parish and ethnic groups in the archdiocese.
Copies of the letter will be available in all parishes this weekend and from the website of the archdiocese, www.sydney.catholic.org.au
Bishop Daniel, the Coptic Orthodox Bishop for the diocese of Sydney and affiliated regions (NSW, Queensland and the Northern Territory), presented the new State MP for Rockdale, Frank Sartor, with a Coptic icon of the Virgin Mary at a recent reception in Mr Sartor’s honour.
The hand-painted stained glass icon from Egypt was presented to Mr Sartor, the former Lord Mayor of Sydney, whose electorate includes St Mary and
St Mina’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral and a college, plus the bishop’s residence in Bexley.
The community also has a parish and a theological college in Arncliffe.
Also present on the night were the Egyptian Consul-General of Sydney, Ahmed Al Kowisini, Cr Angela Koutoulas of Rockdale Council and Coptic Orthodox clergy and lay leaders.