Thank you for your article on BECs in the Adelaide Archdiocese and Archbishop Faulkner's response, which contradicts articles which have appeared in the SA Catholic Newspaper - Southern Cross. (This is widely promoted by Archbishop Faulkner in the parishes and schools of the Archdiocese).
In referring to your AD2000 article, the Archbishop states: "Rather than re-creating isolated, self-reliant, missionary-oriented communities, as the article suggests, my pastoral letter sets out a vision for integrating BECs into parish life and structures". However, in the February 2000 Southern Cross, an article headed "People-Power Church Model Needs Clergy Support - UK Priest" discusses "A future model for running the Catholic Church in Adelaide: Basic Ecclesial Communities." The article states: "BECs break away from the traditional formal structure of the parish church with its parish council and instead rely on making and keeping contact with, and building communities around all Catholics in an area, whether or not they attend Mass."
The April 2000 issue of Southern Cross contained an article headed "A Quiet Revolution in Parish Life" in which Sr Catherine Seward discusses her role as pastoral director of the Mansfield Park parish. She states that "a pastoral director is a person who works in collaboration with a priest to provide pastoral care", but goes on to say: "It's a leadership role and a very caring role [but it is] a team model. It's not a lone leadership. And that's a good model alternative to a parish priest." She also states: "Eucharist is not going to be the only way that Jesus is going to be remembered [in the future]. And the shorter we get of priests, the more important it is for people not to feel they are being deprived of the presence of Jesus."
I believe these articles give the true picture of what is happening in the Adelaide Archdiocese.
Wynn Vale, SA