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LifeLink is another reason to ‘love the Church’, says Archbishop Costelloe


Perth Archbishop Timothy Costelloe speaks to representatives of secondary schools. Photo: Ron Tan.

By Matthew Lau

“Adapt yourselves no longer to the patterns of this present world, but let your minds be remade and your whole nature thus transformed. Then you will be able to discern the will of God and to know what is good, acceptable and perfect” (Rom 12:2).                            

Instilling Catholic students with a sense of responsibility for those less fortunate was the main message of this year’s Archbishop’s Forum for Secondary Schools. 

The annual event, which part of the ‘LifeLink Day for Catholic Schools Initiative’, provides an opportunity for the Bishops talk to the young people and for the young people to ask questions to the Bishops.

Representatives from 25 secondary schools from across the Archdiocese were present at the event, which was hosted at Aranmore College with Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB as the keynote speaker on 20 March.


Auxiliary Bishop Don Sproxton answers questions from the students. Photo: Ron Tan.

During his speech, Archbishop Costelloe challenged students to avoid modern day conformity, using Romans 12:2 as an inspirational tool.

“There is both what we might call a ‘secular’ meaning to this passage and also a religious one, which is the one of course which St Paul intended when he wrote it. The secular message is what might be considered simply good practical advice,” he said.

“Don’t let yourself be pushed and pulled unthinkingly by the general consensus you see all around you and which is presented to you by many of your friends, by the media, by politicians, and so forth. It may all be right, and good, and helpful, but it might also be wrong, and bad, and unhelpful. So be careful, be critical, think hard and only make decisions after careful consideration.”


Secondary school students from across the Archdiocese of Perth were given a platform to ask questions to Archbishop Costelloe and Bishop Sproxton. Photos: Ron Tan.

He said the religious message is invariable, except that it is based on the conviction that God is the creator of the world we live in.

“God knew what he was doing when he created the world; God has indicated his creative intention for the world in the very structure of the things he has created. In Jesus Christ and his Church, God has given us the means by which we can work our way towards a proper understanding of this mysterious, and complex, and beautiful, but also damaged world, and our place in it.”


Religious Education Curriculum and Teaching Team Leader Diana Alteri. Photo: Ron Tan.

Archbishop Costelloe said supporting LifeLink is a way for Catholic people to demonstrate their love for the Church.

“Our support of the LifeLink agencies allows us to say that because our minds have been remade and we now think like Christ, when we encounter people who are hungry, or out of work, or suffering mental illness, we don’t start criticising them or judging them for their lifestyle choices: we just want to feed, or clothe, or house them.

“Help your school community to be open to a divine remaking of its own way of thinking about life, and about our society, and about how the Church that we love can become more and more what God is calling it and needs it to be,” Archbishop Costelloe expressed.

Since its inception in 1999, Perth Archdiocesan Schools have collectively raised more than $1.8 million through the Archbishop’s LifeLink Day campaign, with all proceeds helping LifeLink agencies continue their mission of care to those most  in need in the community.


The 2018 LifeLink Forum for Secondary Schools was held at Aranmore Catholic College on 20 March. Photo: Ron Tan.

Last year, Perth primary and secondary schools raised $127,280, exceeding Archbishop Costelloe’s and Bishop Sproxton’s fundraising goal. In this special “Year of Youth” it is hoped that Archdiocesan schools will enthusiastically support LifeLink Day and achieve even better results.

The Official Launch of LifeLink Day 2018 will be Wednesday 6 June.