The clergy, religious and laity are co-responsible for the mission of the Church.
There are 160 priests in the Archdiocese of Singapore as of 2016. Many are getting old, with nearly a third of them having been a priest for over 30 years. Paying attention to their welfare, keeping them healthy and ensuring their continual development is an important part of the vision. There is also the challenge of encouraging more lay people to discern and respond to the calling to priesthood.
The archdiocese is blessed with a diverse range of men’s, women’s and mixed religious congregations involved in many areas of service. The archdiocese hopes to foster more vocations to these religious congregations, as well as encourage deeper collaboration between priests and the various religious congregations.
According to the 2016 Singapore census, there are over 373,000 Catholics in Singapore. The laity, in fact, forms the majority of the Catholic Church. However, a recent survey conducted by the archdiocese has revealed that some 64% of Catholics in Singapore do not attend Mass every weekend. As such, a significant majority of the archdiocese’s efforts to realise its vision is directed towards reaching out to lay people. It is through them that the Church may truly be the salt of the earth and light of the world.
“The laity are called in a special way to make the Church present and operative in those places and circumstances where only through them can it become the salt of the earth.” (Pope Paul VI, Lumen Gentium).