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The Light of Christmas - Fr Peter Fr Jomon Youth Speaks Thoughts of a Young Catholic Christian NET Ministries Shaping the Young The Catholic Church in Australia: Our Future Stewardship Council Stewardship Finance Committee Preparing for Discipleship Farewell Fr Andrew Pope Francis declared 2018 as the Year of Youth, The Atrium of the Good Shepherd hence our cover page for the annual magazine. Religious Instruction in State Schools “Where’s Christmas?” you may ask. Not only are we St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School now preparing for the joys and hopes of Christmas but for a Church of the future, guided by the St Mary’s Catholic Primary School discussions of the young and old. St Patrick’s Catholic Primary School Shalom Catholic College We’ve asked several young people to tell their Chaplaincy Outreach / Widows’ Support experiences of Church and where they’d like to see it Ecumenism heading in the future. Enjoy reading this year’s MenALIVE publication with its theme “Be Prepared”, listening to the young people speak. United Hearts Prayer Group Passionist Family Groups Archives Bundaberg CWLA Dreams and Visions: Blanket Buddies / Post Funeral Support Mater Hospital St Vincent de Paul The Gift and Bookstore Children’s Activity Christmas Cooking
Holy Rosary Church,
(Mass with Children) St Patrick’s Church
Holy Rosary Church
Holy Rosary Church
St James’ Church, Bargara
Holy Rosary Church
St Mary’s Church
The Light Of Christmas In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while the spirit of God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, “let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from darkness. (Gen 1:1-4) LIVING IN THE TIME OF THE GOSPEL OF LUKE The Gospel writer Luke lived in dark times. He had gathered the stories of Jesus from the reliable witnesses of the region. The dynamic of firsthand storytelling is far more impressive and informative than when the story is read. Storytelling asks you to look the person in the eye and engage with them. Luke addresses the story to Theophilus around 60-70 CE. It is the time of the horrendous war raging in Palestine. The Jews rebelled against the occupying Roman forces in 66 CE. The retaliation was tragic. So many people tortured and killed with their homes and towns decimated. In the midst of this darkness the story, for which so many had longed, was told. The great high priest, Zechariah, is told that his son will herald in a new age. Elizabeth, in her old age, will have a child, who will be called John, and he will point out the coming of the Christ. The Christ will be called Jesus and he will be born of the young virgin, Mary of Nazareth. God’s Holy Spirit will come upon her and the child will be holy. In the Visitation of Mary and Elizabeth we have the great coming together of the young and the old carrying the hopes and dreams that live as a little but significant light of hope. A dynamic created in each one of us leading us to the revelation that life is more than existence. Mary and Elizabeth meet with their story of hope so magnificent they sing the ancient, ancient song of Joy. This is a song with the story of the new creation that reveals beyond imagination. It is the coming together of the new heaven and the new earth. It is a Song so profound, promised and sung for all and by all ages. How the Song awakens within you the music of the reality of God. How deep is the beauty and mystery of motherhood!
Let us Pray Come Holy Spirit, Fill the hearts of your faithful And kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And you shall renew the face of the earth. Amen.
LIVING IN THE TIME OF TODAY It is important we do not read scripture as a basic historical account. It is far more than just fact. Be open to “the historical meaning of faith and the deep inter-relation of both event, and mystery.” (Kenneth Craig All Saints Episcopal Cathedral, Cairo, Egypt, 1977). There needs to be a belonging in both mind and soul. We engage in the spirit of the reality. Today we live in a time of darkness. A time when the veil of darkness attempts to cloud and smother the great Song. Our great institutions and forms of leadership are being suffocated by their own lack of credibility and their search for power and importance. So often the leadership of our institutions select the power of titles and status, structures, language, clothing, exclusiveness, and bow to the god of economics. In response so many people turn away and prefer the addictions of entertainment, the numerous forms of social media and the popular trends of self-importance. And when they fail, swamped by the noise of the day, they seek self-help. Our Church is one such institution that has failed the people. Like King Herod the focus has been on self-image, power and clericalism. The Church is now struggling to live amidst its sinfulness. It is time to listen to the people in the fields who come to seek Christ in the manger. It is time to listen to those who have travelled great distances to offer their gifts. It is time for silence. A time of true silence that allows God’s Word to be heard in its fullness, forgiveness and mercy. It is in the silence of the night that we experience God’s Word made flesh. Dwell in the midst of the silence and experience the beauty and mystery of the light that reveals beyond human intellect and teachings. Experience the presence of the divine today for we are all created in the image of God. Emmanuel: God is with us! Our diocese has its own Assembly next year in preparation for the wider church Plenary in 2020. We have the God-given opportunity to open our minds and souls to the great Song of all ages. Wake up! Stand up and Sing! The Christmas Song of Joy is here. God’s Spirit will sweep over the waters of darkness and the motherhood of the Church will be seen in a new light. A church that gives food to the hungry, water to the thirsty, welcomes the stranger, clothes the naked and visits the sick and imprisoned. (Matt 25: 31-46).
Fr. Peter GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 1
I arrived in Rockhampton, the beef capital of Australia, on June 6th 2017. Like any other missionary, I have been called out of my homeland and sent to preach the good news in a culture that is significantly different from my own. I had many daily difficulties on arrival and it wasn’t easy for me to live here but I took it as a challenge and more than that I believed it was God’s plan that I work in the diocese of Rockhampton as a missionary. The anthropologist, Oberg, in his Book, Cultural Shock: Adjustment to New Cultural Environments, identifies four stages of cultural shock. It begins with a sense of excitement in the presence of a new experience (the honeymoon stage). This is followed by a sense of frustration due to the complications that limit one’s ability to excel in the new environment (the crisis stage) until the newly arrived begins to invest efforts to overcome his frustrations (the recovering stage). Finally the newly arrived eventually begins to excel in the new culture (the adaptation stage). Every person who comes to a new country undergoes these stages in their new life. The first days in Australia were really amazing. All were welcoming and very cordial to me. Bishop Michael, priests, laypeople all were encouraging and motivating. I was taken to different places and parishes. They were beautiful and joyful days. After a few months I was placed in the Parish of North Rockhampton to begin my ministry. Then the problems arose. Even though I had ten years of experience in priestly life, I was struggling to cope up with the culture, food, language etc. For example, my parish priest told me to wait and talk with the people after every mass which was not easy for me. I struggled to mingle with the people, not because I didn’t love the parishioners but the problem was my language. Sometimes we couldn’t understand each other. I saw this as a challenge because I knew that this was a good opportunity to meet the parishioners, become friendly with the people, understand the culture better and develop my English skills. In India the people would not come to priest; rather he would go to them in their homes. I never expected I would go abroad and minister there because, normally, diocesan priests work in the territory of their particular diocese. To be honest I deliberately chose the diocesan priesthood rather than a religious order because of my eldest sister who is a nun. I was in a dilemma; which life would I choose? Religious or diocesan ministry? My sister insisted that I better choose the diocesan life because I could minister in the territory of Cochin City (where my diocese exists) so we can come and see you always. But God’s plan was different. On March 2nd 2016 the bishop of Cochin visited my parish to give the inaugural message in the Parish Lenten Retreat. After he spoke he sat down on the stage while I was standing with the people. He called me to the stage and asked me to sit beside him. Then he told me for my ears only that he was going to send me overseas. “Are you ready to go?” Of course, I was shocked, but as I offered obedience to bishop on the day of my priestly ordination, I told him, “Yes, I am ready.” Life is a gift from God. It is not our will but, “thy will be done” as we pray in the beautiful prayer, the Our Father.
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Fr. Jomon Poothara
YOUTH SPEAKS Tell us a bit about yourself. What is your experience of Church? What needs to happen to make this happen? What is your vision or dream for the Church in the future? Hi! My name is Maddison. I recently graduated from Shalom College in 2017 and am now working as a teacher assistant. Outside work I train in dancing most afternoons and am currently studying at CQU as a distant ed student. I am heavily involved in the parish life as a children’s liturgy leader and being a Stewardship Council member. I devote my time on the weekends to helping out with many different things around town both in the Shalom community and parish. I started going to church as a very young child with my grandparents. Although I never truly understood the meaning of the Mass then as I have grown up I have begun to truly understand the importance of the parts of the Mass. For me, Church makes up two very important aspects in my life. The first being family. Going to church on Sunday is an important way to connect not only with my own family but my parish family. The second is my faith. As a child I did not really understand the concept of a personal faith but as I have grown and experienced challenges, I have learnt that faith is not only about celebrating mass but making connections with others and living my faith. Making our Catholic faith real and accessible for young people is very important to me. I believe that we need to relate to young Catholics in a language that makes sense and provide events and activities that would begin to see more teenagers involved. Once we start looking at what the young people are hoping and wanting they might be more open to growing their own personal faith. Children and teenagers need to brainstorm ideas on ways to reach out to other young people. Everyone speaks his or her ideas. Hopefully the group will connect and gather some exciting plans for a start.
Hi! My name is Nicholas and I am in grade 8 at Shalom College. I love drama and hanging out with my friends. I’m involved in a lot of afterschool activities including drama coaching and some sport. I usually attend 5:30 mass and I sing in the choir. I love going to youth group before mass. When I picture Church, I used to only think of Sundays and prayer but as I grow older I am gaining a better appreciation of what Church actually is. My favourite thing about this parish is its strong feeling of being a community. I would love to have more events for young people so that there would be more things for us to do. My dream for the parish and Church is for the community to understand what the youth need and want. I think by having more youth-dedicated Masses and getting the younger kids involved it will help engage them in the Mass. I also think that maybe having activities that help kids and teenagers understand the Mass from their perspective would be a great way to get more youth interested.
My name is Allen from Shalom College. I am in year 12 this year. I have been a Catholic my whole life. My favourite things are food, basketball and tennis. I attended ACTS camp and youth pilgrimige. I usually attend either 5.30pm or 9.00am Mass. I initially found Church boring, but I grew to have a deeper understanding of my faith and now enjoy the Mass. My favourite thing about the parish community is the continuing effort they put into organising different types of masses, particularly at the 5.30pm Mass. My vision for the Church, especially locally, is for it to focus on being more ‘youth-orientated’ so that it can continue to appeal to young people. I believe that we need to start by holding some youth events like small rallies, where our young people can gather together. I think it would be great to hire a Youth Coordinator for the youth to have someone to assist them and look up to. I also would love to see some of our older youth visiting the parish schools and running activities, so they can train youth leaders.
My name is Kenneth. I am currently a year 12 student at Shalom Catholic College Bundaberg. I am 17 and have grown up in a supportive Catholic family. One of my favourite things is playing soccer. All my family go to church. We look to opportunities to get involved as much as we can. I enjoy going as it connects me to my family, so this means I go as often as I can. My dream would be to see more involvement from the youth in the Church at Mass and at Church events. I think that by encouraging the youth to take part in Mass in many different ways we might see more interest from them.
My name is Michael and I am currently studying a Bachelor of Education at CQU. I recently graduated from Shalom College in 2017. My whole family are Catholics and we attend Mass on a regular basis. My experiences with Church have not been that exciting due to the fact that not many people my age attend. I find it hard to attend Mass sometimes because of this. My dream for the Church is to make the youth groups or any other planned activities more inviting and exciting, to attract a larger audience into the parish. I think we need to sit down as a group of young people and work out some ideas for new ways to attract more young people. I believe that individually we all have some good ideas but need a combined effort.
GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 3
THOUGHTS OF A YOUNG CATHOLIC CHRISTIAN 1. What is your understanding of Church? Who/what is the Church? The Catholic Church is an all-encompassing community that welcomes all who believe and have faith in the message of Jesus Christ. We are all part of the Church. Each one of us is a building block, all made with a purpose, that builds up the very foundations of the global Church community. We are all one with each other as we are one with God. 2. “The Church” has provided this opportunity of a Year of Youth. What does the Year of Youth mean for you? The Year of Youth means a time for young people to be on the forefront of changing and innovating the way forward for the Church as it continues to grow and change. In this day and age, we are availed to so much opportunity and information and we are able to interact with so many people who come from different places, cultures and perspectives. Now, more than ever, young people are exposed to so many different parts of the world, so it is up to us to make the change we want to see in the world. We can see the issues so it’s our responsibility to apply the teachings of the Church and act with compassion, love and humility to contribute to a better future for all. So, for me, the Year of Youth is about making a change for the better. 3. Is the Year of Youth making a difference for young people? And how? I believe that the Year of Youth is engaging young people to come along, check out the church, and explore their individual faith journey further. I feel that focussing on youth has helped open the door to young people who never really thought of the Church as something that they can do or that they are interested in. It is not just for old people and it is not about being held back and being ‘boring’, but it’s about opening a whole other realm of opportunity. In my experience, youth are always welcomed and praised with open arms and people love the breath of fresh air and to have something different. 4. Who can help you take advantage of the Year of Youth? This year? Into the future? I know that Shalom is an amazing place with endless opportunities to get involved with the life of the Church if you choose to accept those opportunities. In particular Mrs Petersen is always encouraging me to get involved and always asks me if I am coming to Church or other youth events involved with the Church.
Outside of school there are so many wonderful people at our parish who are always keen to mentor young people and help them to get involved and understand the Church better. The parish’s NET team has also been a wonderful tool in helping youth take advantage of the Year of Youth. 5. As a young person would you like to comment on the importance of belonging to a Church community? What are the benefits? The benefits of belonging to a Church community are not just the connections and the support networks that you create, which can be made anywhere, but these connections are deeply rooted in something higher and more powerful than just a simple human connection. When the basis of your friendships and relationships with others are deeply rooted in God, there’s not much that can tear you apart. It’s a whole other level of understanding, compassion, and love which isn’t always often found. I know in my most difficult times that I can always reach out to people in my Church community and I’m met with forgiveness, love and kindness. 6. Would you agree that young people have a responsibility to shape the Church of the future? Certainly. As the next generation it is becoming our turn to step up and show the world what we think is important. We now have the opportunity to continue to share the values of the Church and not let this become a dying art or let the Church become a thing of the past. It’s our job to immerse our friends, families and even our children and our children’s children into the life of the church and show them how the love and compassion of God can exponentially change the course of their lives. 7. Do you think Pope Francis is making a difference for young people today? I think that Pope Francis has been an amazing advocate for young people in speaking to and about issues that we can relate to and are relevant to our lives. He also has a way of calling us out as young people for what we aren’t doing so well and calling us to be better (couch potatoes), to be more, and to go out into the world and spread the message of the Gospel and do good in the name of God and the Church. In doing so, he has enabled young people to be able to relate and interact more closely with the Church as they are beginning to feel a sense of acceptance and are more able to open up in ways they haven’t felt they were able to do before.
Emily Obst – Yr 12 Student
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NET MINISTRIES PREPARE YOUNG PEOPLE
“Be Prepared” has been our constant refrain for the past year. Almost a year ago, we prepared to start our training with NET Ministries (National Evangelisation Teams). For some of us, this meant booking flights and applying for visas. For others, it meant leaving home for the first time. All of us, however, packed a suitcase, grabbed a backpack and set off into the unknown. Before leaving, however, we all did one thing—we prayed. As much as we can fill out forms and pack a suitcase these things can only hint of what’s to come. Honestly though, that’s like most aspects of life. We can’t know what will happen until it comes. We can, however, be prepared. On a sunny January afternoon at a camp near Noosa on the Sunshine Coast, five unsuspecting strangers became a team, the Bundaberg NET Team. Yes, that’s us. The next month was filled with training to prepare us for our time in Bundaberg. As much as training was good, it is by doing that one truly learns.
This year, we have been able to run RE classes at Shalom College on topics such as Forgiveness, Social Justice, Teamwork and Self-Image. It is with hopeful hearts that we share our personal experiences, to help prepare students for the future and to have them ask important questions such as Who am I? Who do I want to be? Who is Jesus to me? What does faith mean to me? We have also explored these questions in our youth groups this year, preparing the youth to continue the groups in the years to come. We have encouraged youth to step up and be leaders, so that youth ministry might continue engaging and flourishing even after we depart in November. Only God knows what the future may hold. We, however, can hope, pray and prepare for whatever is to come. In the years to come we pray for the Church in Bundaberg, and we particularly pray for the youth, that they may grow in faith and be prepared to step up to be the present as well as the future of the Church.
We arrived in Bundaberg at the end of February and were immediately welcomed with open arms by the parishioners and community. We continued to prepare for our ministry and events. As the last NET team in Bundaberg, we knew that we also needed to prepare for the future. Thus, even from the start of our year, we have been thinking, asking and praying about what we’re doing and how it builds the future of youth ministry in The Catholic Parish of Bundaberg. NET’s motto is “encouraging young people to love Jesus and embrace the Church.” In July, we had the privilege of attending the Deanery Assembly in Gladstone. This was an opportunity to listen and dialogue about issues concerning the Church today, in preparation for the Plenary Council in 2020. We participated in these discussions, offering our voices, views and experience, especially on the question of youth engagement in the Church. Youth need to be met where they’re at, and we must be prepared to go there—to schools, to hangouts, to social outreach—to make faith accessible and relevant.
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GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 5
THE CATHOLIC CHURCH IN AUSTRALIA: OUR FUTURE Are we prepared for the journey? In 2018 we, as members of the Catholic Church in Australia, have begun a journey. It is a journey without a clear destination, without a GPS, without “Siri”. It will be “messy” and may be disruptive! We are on a “journey” to review all the structures, systems and practices of the Catholic Church in Australia, in the light of the teachings of Jesus Christ. We are journeying as a “Synodal Church”, that is a Church that Listens to its people, the People of God. We must listen to all people from all cultures, to those on the margins, to the poor and needy. We are not journeying alone. Prayer will be very important, real prayer, not just saying words, but Listening! We listen to the Holy Spirit and to the Word of God before we say anything. Our journey is to prepare us for a Plenary Council. “Plenary” means “All Together”. We travel together. The last Plenary Council was held in Sydney more than 80 years ago. This Council will be significantly different. The last Council involved only Bishops and Priests. This time one-third of the delegates will be lay women and men. Australia will be the first country to hold a Plenary Council with an “open agenda.” Our journey to the Council involves: 1. Preparation A Planning Committee has been established to look at new ways of engaging all people, both in our Church, and in the diverse society of Australia in which we live. It is a time for open listening and dialogue! The Planning Committee has set up a web page for the interaction and listening to all submissions. Check the webpage. Your submission would be most welcome. Go to plenarycouncil.catholic.org.au
The Major Questions Raised by The Southern Deanery of The Diocese. (By approx. 150 Parishioners from Bundaberg, Gladstone, and The Valleys) Led by the Dean of the Southern Deanery, Fr. John Daly, we have met four times to clarify the key issues regarding the future of our Church. Bishop Michael McCarthy played an active “listening” role at each session and will finally present a Diocesan submission to the Plenary Council. Of the 250 issues raised, the top 5 issues are: 1. Leadership of the Catholic Church for the Future. Guided by their Baptismal call, with the unique gifts of the Holy Spirit, how can lay women and men learn to be coresponsible with our priests for the leadership, organisation, and management of the local church, our parish? 2. Discipleship As a community of disciples, how can we follow the Way of Jesus Christ more actively and joyfully in our Church today, and into the future? 3. Adult Faith Formation and Education How can we help adults and families learn more about their faith? 4. Youth and Young Families Why are many of our young families “missing” from our church pews each Sunday? 5. Marketing and Technology How can we use social media to promote the Gospel message, and the contribution the Catholic Church makes to the Australian society?
2. Celebration The coming together of 300 delegates for the first meeting, 4th October 2020.
Conclusion My hope for the future is that the Plenary Council will arrive at a model of Church, more closely aligned to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and focused on the flow of the Holy Spirit, so that the Catholic Church of Australia becomes an expression of hope for all people.
3. Implementation This is not finalised at this stage.
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PARISH STEWARDSHIP COUNCIL The Parish Stewardship Council has had a busy and successful year. Be Prepared is certainly apt for us as we prepare our new Parish Pastoral Plan. This year has been a time of transition, as some members have resigned, for personal or business reasons, and we have welcomed new members. It has also been a time of transition for our priests. We farewelled Fr Andrew and welcomed Fr Jomon. This year we invited various Prayer Groups to lead us in Prayer before our meetings commenced. We realised the rich diversity of prayer groups that gather in our Parish, daily, weekly or monthly, and the great work of praying for the needs of our local Church and the world that they do. The Parish Stewardship Council is taking an active role in preparing for the Plenary Council in 2020. The focus is the involvement of laity in our Churches and we appreciate the work being done and consideration being given to our feedback and input. As we approach Christmas, our energy has been focused on the activities in our Parish at this important time: the Masses themselves, the Sacramental programs, and the part we play in the wider community. Events such as Pageant of Lights, Bethlehem Live and the Christmas Giving Tree, show our faith in action and the generous hearts of our parishioners. I would personally like to thank every member of the Parish Stewardship Council who has given so generously of their time and talents this year and the leadership shown by Fr Peter, Fr Andrew and Fr Jomon. Wishing everyone a happy and blessed Christmas.
Chair â€“ Parish Stewardship Council
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GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 7
STEWARDSHIP - PREPARING FOR THE FUTURE 2018 has seen our Parish take part in a “Stewardship Renewal”. The renewal commenced in June with two weeks of prayer. Two publications were distributed next. In Volume One - Discovering Our Gifts for Ministry, we completed a Self-Assessment Inventory and in Volume Two – Ministry Opportunities, we were provided with information to highlight our spiritual gifts and also ministries in which we can apply these gifts. After this process, over 400 parishioners completed forms indicating where they wish to use their time and talents for Ministry. These forms allowed us to commit to Liturgy and Prayer, Pastoral Care, Adult Formation and Education, Administration Finance and Maintenance, Outreach and Youth activities using our God-given Spiritual gifts. Our church is in the process of change. Part of this change will happen with outcomes from the Plenary Council in 2020. As a faith community we started to prepare for this change in 2008 when a number of the team attended a Stewardship conference in Sydney presented by two parish leaders from the United States who had been doing Stewardship in their parish for 20 years. It has been proven that Stewardship can take this long to become a way of life for parishes.
As our Pastoral Focus states, we are a stewardship parish gifted by God, grateful of heart, using our gifts and talents to serve. God is asking us to be co-responsible for the call to serve. The face of our parish is changing. There are more elderly seeking connection with the church outside of the traditional scene of ‘church’. We have seen an increase in those people wanting to visit the elderly at home, or in nursing homes. We have seen an increase in those participating in Indian Catechesis as this community builds. Children have answered the call to become Altar Servers. With this year’s magazine focussing on being prepared, it highlights to me that now is the time to be looking forward and planning for areas of parish life that we see growing in the next 10 years. Next year I can’t wait to see all who responded to this year’s Stewardship Renewal to be fully trained, fully active and fulfilled in their service. I look forward to the future where all parishioners will work together to build up the Body of Christ, bearing Christ’s love in the world.
Carmen Wyatt Time & Talents co-ordinator
10 years later we are half way through our parish ‘Stewardship Journey’. This journey has given us a great foundation with our Ministers already gaining confidence in their ministry roles. Some ministers are performing roles that they never dreamed of doing, but with careful discernment and training, have responded to the call of Jesus. As an outcome, these people have found great joy in ministering to the community.
David BATT MP Member for Bundaberg WIN Tower, Cnr Quay and Barolin Streets, Bundaberg Qld 4670 PO Box 935 Bundaberg Qld 4670 07 4111 3100 email@example.com DavidBattMP
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my Peace, joy and love from family to yours for a happy and holy Christmas
FINANCE - “ALWAYS PLAN AHEAD” When I think of the theme of this year’s magazine “Be Prepared”, I am reminded of Richard Cushing’s words: “Always plan ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark.” Your Parish Finance Committee conducts its planning and preparation processes on two fronts: the fiscal and the physical. The fiscal planning is based on the fact that we need to wisely manage our income and expenses to ensure the long-term financial viability of the Parish. Secondly, we need to take care of the physical by ensuring that our assets are fit for purpose, and are available to be used, by our parishioners and by the broader community. This physical aspect of the Parish has, however, a much more important facet to it and that is the physical presence and involvement of people who are committed to Christ’s teachings, and who want to see these teachings come alive in the way we reach out to and show love to those around us. After all a Parish that is financially secure can be pastorally bankrupt if our churches were to be continually empty. Thank heavens they’re not! Mindful of these parameters your Parish Finance Committee continues to prepare for the near future when we could have less priests available, partly balanced with increased involvement of lay people. This prospect necessitates strong and active parish ministries for Liturgy, Stewardship, Pastoral Care and for the Youth, as well as having an effective management and administrative team who shoulder the non-pastoral responsibilities for the parish. It is a blessing that over 300 parishioners recently nominated for volunteer Stewardship roles. I would like to acknowledge the remarkable contribution of one volunteer Tom Launchbury who, for years, assisted with our property management. Tom was forced to retire from that position within the Finance Committee due to ill health. Thank you, Tom, for your dedication. Because all parish workers can’t be volunteers, an increased level of lay involvement comes at the cost of additional wages and on-costs and requires us to plan for savings in other areas over which we have some control. We will look for added efficiencies by reviewing job descriptions again this financial year. At this point, I would like to acknowledge the wonderful contribution made to the running of the parish by Diana Pippia who, after 28 years of dedicated service to the Parish, has retired. Diana, we thank you specifically for all you did to support the smooth running of the Parish Finance Committee, and we wish you a happy retirement.
The Finance Committee is aware of the potential for savings by taking advantage of improved technology. To this end, and in line with the large-scale initiative by the Diocese, including Catholic Education, our Parish Office is now generating its own solar power. Combining this with an upgrade of the Office lighting to LED panels, gives us yearly savings of several thousand dollars. The Finance Committee is also considering the installation of solar panels at Holy Rosary church. The system specifications for Holy Rosary would ensure that any increase in electricity costs resulting from, for example, an air conditioning plant operating at Holy Rosary, would be fully covered by the solar power generated from the Holy Rosary solar panels, and would, over time, provide a considerable offset towards the air conditioning installation costs. With the roll-out of the NBN, we have again used technology to generate additional annual savings by installing an upgraded PABX to manage our Office phone system. The previous system was not coping with NBN technology. Also, our cost per phone call is now reduced by at least two-thirds. Maximising rental income, a major contributor to parish cash-flows, is always under review, as we seek opportunities to increase. As the major component of parish in-flows, the importance of the income from our Planned Giving Envelopes and loose collections cannot be emphasized enough, because they comprise 70% of our parish income. Please give serious consideration to your weekly contribution to the parish and help us to reverse the decline in Planned Giving over recent years. You can simplify your regular contribution by arranging with the Office to establish a direct bank deposit to the parish. On behalf of the Parish Finance Committee, I wish you and your Family a Holy and Happy Christmas, and a prosperous New Year.
Parish Business Manager Finance Committee Chairperson.
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PREPARED FOR DISCIPLESHIP We hear each Sunday how we are to live as disciples of Christ. Jesus explains how we are to do this. “If anyone wants to be a follower of mine….” (Matthew 16: 24), or “put down your nets and Come follow me” (Matthew 4: 19) “By this shall all men know that you are my disciples.” (John 13: 35) Jesus prepared his disciples for three years to “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew 28: 19). The sacrament of baptism calls us to a life of discipleship. Through water and the Holy Spirit we are baptised into a life with Jesus, our brother. We become like Christ. We are plunged or immersed into the death and new life of Christ. We put on Christ and try to live a life like Christ, the anointed one. Baptism makes us Christian in the family of God: one faith, one baptism, one Lord. Our Baptism Team helps young parents prepare their child for a life in Christ. They ask the questions: Why do you want your child baptised? What difference will baptism make for your child? Parents are asked to contemplate on the difference being baptised has made in their lives. The small team, in need of members, finds joy in pointing the young parents on the path to Catholic Christian parenthood. Many of us forget at times the significant responsibility we have as baptised Christians. It is our duty to bring our children up in faith, to nurture that faith and its Catholic practices, and live as Christ commands: to love God and our neighbour. After his baptism in the River Jordan Jesus began his short years of ministry, healing, praying, teaching, forgiving, accepting all, even the sinners. So too do we begin a life of missionary service after our baptism. We don’t do it alone. Like the twelve apostles were for Jesus, so are our parents, family, godparents, friends and faith community journeying with us.
Continuing the Baptismal Journey The age and process for the celebration of the sacraments of Confirmation, Eucharist and Reconciliation has changed over the centuries. Their theologies have changed along the way too. We now see children who were baptised as infants returning to complete their initiation into God’s family, the Church, around the age of eight. During their first years, hopefully they have been growing in their understanding of Jesus and the life he asks us to live. The sacramental group this year numbered 70, including some secondary school children. Through the sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist these children are now on mission, we hope. Their mission is that of Jesus: to serve others, especially the poor and marginalised, and bring the love of God to the world. Like the apostles after Pentecost, with the Holy Spirit’s guidance, they will be able to continue to live as one of Jesus’ disciples.
The Journey to Easter We know that the cross was not the end of Jesus’ journey. He rose in Easter glory, appeared to his disciples, commissioned them to “go out and make disciples of all the nations” with the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, giving them the power and courage to do so. Many came to believe and be baptised as Christians till this very day. Every now and then there are children who have not been baptised as infants, and adults who wish to be baptised. These are special people because they desire, of their own free will, to belong to the Catholic Christian family. Theirs is a conversion process into the life of Christ. They have heard the call to “come and see” and are brave enough to learn more about discipleship as a way of life in the Catholic tradition. The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults is the preparation process that five young people and two ladies journeyed to be initiated during the Easter Vigil. What a gloriously wet, in the baptismal sense, and vibrant night that was. It was Fr Andrew’s first Easter Vigil as presider and he relished in his role of leading us through ritual and symbol, prayer and song, to the joy of our faith in the Risen Christ. We welcomed Taj Axford, Natalie Horwood, Kai Todd, Atlanta Caruana, Kristy-Lee Anderson, and Julie Price into our faith community this night. In May, Patrick Jay and Jai Madden were initiated into the Church through baptism, confirmation and Eucharist too. That was one of Fr Andrew’s better baptism moments too. The water and oil flowed.
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FAREWELL FR ANDREW Sometimes along comes someone who is already baptised in another Christian tradition and wants to be received into full communion of the Catholic Church or one who is baptised as Catholic yet hasnâ€™t completed their initiation sacraments. There are many people whose stories of conversion are unique. We were privileged in January to receive into full communion, Kellie Howard, and in November, Adam Lucas. Hasan Um completed his initiation in October.
Living as Disciples
It was with great sadness that we said goodbye and thanks to Fr Andrew Hogan as he left to begin his time of study in Belgium. A Mass of Thanksgiving began the farewell with mood lighting and 93 candles to create a prayerful environment, four concelebrating priests with Fr Andrew, friends involved in ministry, and beautiful music led by the parish musicians and singers. Afterwards we gathered with family and friends for a BBQ and final farewells. He is and has been for many of us a caring pastor, brilliant musician and liturgist, generous friend, and loved by the young people of our parish. One of our parishioners remembers his rapport with the young with humour and talent in the cartoon below.
As for all us, our parishâ€™s large group of newly baptised, initiated, and received have just stepped out on the Catholic Christian discipleship road. They are discovering what it is to be a disciple of Christ in the Catholic tradition. The first disciples set out in pairs. They were never alone. None of us can be good disciples without the assistance of others, especially our family, friends and faith community to encourage us, and sustenance for the journey that comes from the Eucharist. If you would like to find out how you can accompany someone on this discovery of discipleship, please contact me at the office. Preparing and guiding others to live our faith is extremely rewarding.
Sacramental & RCIA Co-ordinator
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OF THE GOOD SHEPHERD It is just over two years since the opening of the Atrium of the Good Shepherd here in Bundaberg. We have been privileged to have a number of children attend during this time. Children aged from three to six years of age attend our Level 1 space once a week. During this time we have observed the children’s progress in ‘finding God for themselves’. This is all possible through the Montessori style of learning adapted by Sophia Cavaletti. The Catechesis closely follows the life of the Church with special presentations in Lent, Easter, Advent, Christmas and Ordinary Time. We have been blessed to extend our work by sharing with children and parents from the three local Catholic schools, where we presented displays, such as The Eucharistic Presence of the Good Shepherd, in preparation to receive the sacraments. We have also engaged with children and teachers from St Joseph’s school. The children from Year 2 visited the Atrium for several sessions to learn about the Sacrament of Baptism. The work of the Atrium allows children to listen and to also see and touch the various objects used at Baptism – the Light of Christ in the Easter Candle, White Garment, the Water, the Word and the Oils. This spiritual experience is always enhanced by sensory materials which the Church has chosen to be included in the Sacraments. At the beginning of this year we were privileged to attend two training sessions in Brisbane. This is in preparation for the Level 2 part of our Atrium for children who are ages 6 to 9 years old. We began with this level in 2018. Children in this age group continue to develop their knowledge of Jesus the Good Shepherd but the emphasis is on the parable of the True Vine. Together we begin to understand more about Christ and His Church in the sacraments of Reconciliation, Eucharist and Confirmation. The beauty of this Catechesis is unravelled each time we meet with the children. Adults and children are equally enriched. We warmly encourage and welcome anyone who feels called to assist in this wonderful experience or to be further formed in their faith. Please contact the Parish. Wishing you and your loved ones a Blessed Christmas Season.
Marie Smrek and Jana Mackie CATECHISTS
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AN INITIATIVE OF
REFLECTIONS OF A FIRST-TIME R.I TEACHER
RELIGIOUS INSTRUCTIONS IN STATE SCHOOLS This year our team has included some new members, some having taught before, others not. It is vital that everyone is well prepared before going into class. So, preparation is required on many levels. As we are going into state schools, there are many state government policies and procedures, especially around student protection and code of conduct, that we must be aware of and adhere to. This includes having the “working with children check”, the blue card. The Diocesan Office in Rockhampton has its own layers of checks and balances to ensure that every instructor has the correct attributes for this missionary role and are a worthy representative of the Catholic faith. We instruct (cannot call ourselves teachers) in an ecumenical classroom so an understanding of the different variations of the other Christian faiths is needed to be sensitive to their rituals and customs. i.e. adult baptism or infant baptism. We may only use the authorised program and materials which means each week we need to read through and be familiar with, the aims of each lesson, photocopy any extra material and organise the availability of the Bibles. To ensure we are well prepared to enter the classrooms and be a witness of God’s “Good News” a training day is held each year before we begin. It is held at the Apostolic Church of Queensland and is a great way to start the year. Over 60 people attend, volunteers from all 24 different faith denominations involved in the Bundaberg Religious Instruction Cooperative. The Apostolic Church cater for the day and some would say it is worth going just for the delicious sandwiches and cakes. In August the Catholic Education Office in Rockhampton holds a training day to which we connect via video conferencing. However most importantly the best preparation is putting our trust in God through prayer and being open to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. It never cease to amaze me what wonderous lessons I have, that can only be explained by being Spirit driven.
As an RI Teacher I am very grateful and blessed to have this wonderful opportunity to share our faith and Christian beliefs with the students at our State Schools. As I prepared for my first class at East Primary School, I felt excited and blessed. I was looking forward to meeting the students and finding out what they had already learned and discovered. I felt determined and confident through God’s prayer that I was ready for my first class. Preparation included the Teacher’s manual guide which gave me a variety of activities and tools to prepare for the class. During the year the students had been given work books to explore, apply and reflect on. We also have a set of Bibles in the class rooms to share, which we use to discover where the stories come from. One session the students read a play about ‘Jesus and Bartimaeus’. Each student had a role to play. I felt it was important for the students to connect and understand the stories and the Christian values they hold. At the end of the class we reflected on what they had learned and how it could impact our lives. “The good news is spreading all over the world with great success.” (Colossians 1:6a)
Pauline Merefield - Co-ordinator
PO Box 535, Bundaberg QLD 4670 | P 07 4152 0744 | www.keithpitt.com.au AUTHORISED BY KEITH PITT MP, LIBERAL NATIONAL PARTY OF QUEENSLAND, 41 WOONGARRA STREET, BUNDABERG QLD 4670.
GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 13
ST JOSEPH’S CATHOLIC PRIMARY SCHOOL
What have the St Joseph’s community been up to this year to ‘Be Prepared’? - Mary MacKillop: In the lead up to our MacKillop Festival, we looked at Mary’s special qualities and values, and ways to apply these to our own everyday lives, thus paving the path to a better future self: service, compassion, dignity for others, courage, awareness of a sense of God, tolerance. The prestigious Spirit of Mary MacKillop Award was received by four students who consistently emulate these qualities Laylah Jackson, Ruby Hinrichsen-Armstrong, Xavier Ulbl and Kintara Blank. - Environmental projects: With Pope Francis encouraging us all to live more sustainably and with his encyclical Laudato Si’ continuing to take centre stage, the St Joseph’s community has endeavoured to take our role as stewards of creation very seriously. We do this through education and hands-on projects. If you don’t know about something you won’t love it; if you don’t love it, you won’t develop a passion for it; and if you’re not passionate about it, then you won’t fight for it! We hope to instil a passion for making a world a better place for future generations to enjoy. - Our Year 6 students have taken on various leadership roles throughout the year, encouraging them to look beyond themselves towards making a difference to our school and wider community. - Refurbishment of buildings and grounds: certainly a sign that we are looking ahead and being prepared for future learning. - Developing responsible citizens for the future through our eSmart teaching and learning, implementation of the Daniel Morcombe curriculum and safe use of technology devices. We hope you enjoy a safe, happy, Holy and healthy Christmas with those you love.
Trish Garrad APRE
Good news! St Joseph’s School community was excited and very proud of their Language Literature team who competed at the State titles in Brisbane to be awarded first place and Australian champions in their division for 2018. St Joseph’s has been supporters of this challenge, with the guidance and support of Pauline Merefield for over twenty years, first as Tournament of the Minds and in more recent years as Optiminds Challenge. Optiminds Challenge: - fosters flexibility, innovative thinking & functioning - promotes complex thinking & creative problem solving skills - encourages reflective thinking & self-directed learning - promotes an understanding & appreciation of self & others - develops effective communication & collaborative thinking skills - fosters cooperation & teamwork - stimulates a spirit of exploration, investigation, experimentation & a love of learning St Joseph’s supports and encourages all of the above. Students spent many afternoons and weekends collaborating and cooperating in preparation for the regional challenge in gaining the success that saw them competing in the State finals. They listened to the guidance and accepted the support of teachers Pauline Merefield and Lynette Camilleri-Blemings who so generously devoted their time and talent. Parents encouraged and assisted their children and each other. Congratulations to the team of Jameisen Bush, Laura Stack, Jada Carroll, Jada Critchlow, Mila Rose and Isabella Wesche, their parents and teachers. St Joseph’s community is very proud, not only of your outstanding achievement but of the qualities, spirit and teamwork you demonstrated.
Kaye Beston Principal
ST JOSEPH’S CATHOLIC PRIMARY SCHOOL
OSEPH’S ST J
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W IN G A S ON E
St Mary’s CATHOLIC PRIMARY SCHOOL
St Mary’s Catholic Primary School has been working hard and having fun this year to share our gifts with others, in the hope that we are creating a community of kindness and generosity. Over the past year many events have been held where we have raised money and awareness, particularly to those in our community who are less fortunate than ourselves. Our Year 5 students participated in “Lemonade Wars” where they set up lemonade stands, made their own lemonade, to raise money for the St Vincent De Paul Christmas appeal. Students also participated in a “Footy Colours Day” and a “Dress Like A Farmer” day, which raised money for those in drought affected areas. Our “Acts of Kindness” days helped to spread love and acceptance to all in our community. At St Mary’s we are always striving to remember to be grateful for the gifts that we already have and to share these gifts with others. We pride ourselves on being a community where all are accepted and cared for. St Mary’s is gifted with staff who always go above and beyond for the students. In addition to planning and teaching some amazing learning experiences, our teachers also give their time to train, coach and prepare students for some awesome extra curricula activities. Some of the highlights from this year include the success of our Rugby League, Netball, Tennis and Optimind Teams as well as the numerous Eisteddfod items, music bands and choir performances. We are especially proud of our teacher Miss Pettett who received a “Spirit of Catholic Education Award” this year during Catholic Education week. St Mary’s students always enjoy attending the anointing Masses at St Mary’s Church and sharing first Friday liturgies and Masses with our school community. We are preparing our students to be courageous, confident and kind and as they grow to become active members of our society our hope is that we will build a community of kindness.
David Boge APRE
GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 15
St Patrick’s Catholic Primary School 2018 has been an amazing one at St Patrick’s. We reflect with affection on our year and this year’s theme: Be Prepared. We prepared ourselves for the challenges that Lent held and embraced the call to give. The fantastic St Patrick’s School community raised over $3000 for Project Compassion with our Caritas challenges and our annual Mini Fair. Each class had to prepare stalls and give their own time toward making a difference to those less fortunate. Our Mini Fair fostered a sense of belonging and generosity within the school community. Our friends from Carinbundi joined in the fun, preparing and running two stalls themselves. Carinbundi is a local, not for profit, organisation that provides disability support services to their customers. Catholic Education Week is always a very special one for us. Every class had secret kindness challenges to complete. They completed their challenges wholeheartedly and with a spirit of giving. Sr Mary McAuley made a surprise appearance again this year. Our week of celebrations included a combined school’s Mass at Holy Rosary, open classrooms, a farewell liturgy with Fr Andrew, finishing the week with a family picnic on the oval. Our Mini Vinnies team has been prepared all year to help when needed. They have led liturgies, organised and run a school disco to raise funds for the drought relief, organised fundraisers and are leading our Christmas Appeal. We have again held some wonderful community events. Our parents, grandparents and friends are always welcome to join in with the school dance night, St Patrick’s Day celebrations, Catholic Education Week activities, Mother’s and Father’s Day Liturgies and of course our weekly class liturgies. Parish Mass with Children is also a highlight for our classes, attending the regular Monday morning Mass with the Parish community. We have once again welcomed the energetic NETeam into our school community. Our students really look forward to the weekly scripture presentations and the enthusiasm the NETeam bring to sharing their faith. Our performances of Honk! Jr were a credit to all involved. Seeing such young students perform at a remarkable level was amazing. They also found time to welcome and interact with residents of some local retirement villages, local playgroups and our friends from Carinbundi after the performances. St Patrick’s is proud of the caring attitudes of our students. We are very thankful for our blessings. The St Patrick’s School Community wishes you all a safe and holy Christmas season.
Tracey Cook APRE
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SHALOM CATHOLIC COLLEGE Young people are very conscious of our world and what is happening to it. Students at Shalom College have been very active this year in looking for ways to protect our world for the future. Although most students would know little of the Pope’s encyclical letter, “Laudato Si”, they are very aware of the urgent challenge to protect our common home. This year has seen some very affirmative action in this area. The YCS (Young Christian Students) group began the year by embracing the plastic bag ban and designing a reusable shopping bag. YCS follows the ‘review of life’ which is See, Judge, Act. After discussing this issue the students thought of a possible solution and came up with the idea of a reusable bag. To raise awareness of this issue they held a competition to design the logo to go on the front of the bag. There were a large number of entries but the judging committee felt Ella Boas’ entry encapsulated the theme of recycling best.
Another YCS initiative was the removal of plastic straws in the tuckshop and replacing these with papers straws. The student body have embraced this idea and often opt to not use a straw at all. Every little bit helps. The Reef Guardian program has taken off and the numbers volunteering to help are growing. The current project is to recycle more effectively. This has double the benefits. Firstly rubbish that would have gone to landfill is recycled and secondly the money raised in the buyback scheme will be donated to a number of charities. Both of these groups hold their meetings in lunch breaks which clearly demonstrates the students’ dedication to these causes that will help reduce the amount of waste we are creating. Often we are quick to criticise the younger generations but maybe it is these young people who are heeding the call and coming together to take charge of this home that has been entrusted to us. MARY TAYLOR AP Mission
YCS members Cara Mainwaring, Ella Boas (winner), Cheryl Petersen and Simon Rathbone celebrating the arrival of the reusable bags with Ella’s design on the front.
GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 17
CHAPLAINCY OUTREACH Chaplaincy is a non-denominational emotional and spiritual support ministry. It is a way our parish can reach out to the marginalized and to others not of our faith community. By their compassionate presence, chaplains can witness to God’s love for every person, no matter their current circumstance in life. The main role of a chaplain is to be a supportive, listening presence. At times, part of that support may be assisting with prayer services, reading scripture, or praying one-on-one with the person. The chaplain is always careful not to proselytize – any spiritual support provided is always tailored to the person’s expressed wishes and spirituality. In Chaplaincy, there is no fixing or making it better – it is more a ministry of accompaniment that supports and affirms, respectful of the person’s inner resources and reverently mindful of the Holy Spirit who is active in all hearts (John 14:26). This year five chaplains from this parish volunteered for the Chaplaincy Service at the Base Hospital, with three taking turns on the after-hours on-call roster. Three of our chaplains have been providing a service to the Friendlies Hospital. Through connections made at the Ecumenical Luncheon, one of our chaplains has been approved for chaplaincy support one day a week to the new Veteran Support Service. Training required for this ministry is through Clinical Pastoral Education courses. Ongoing individual or group supervision is also required. Feel free to contact Denise Tuzes or Trish Byrne through the Parish Office if you feel called to this outreach ministry.
WIDOWS’ SUPPORT GROUP No one feels like going for coffee, out for a meal or to a movie by themselves. There comes a time when we all like to join someone else. It is extra hard if you have lost your loving husband recently, months or even years ago. Last year, after an enquiry from a new parishioner, a group was formed and now up to fifteen ladies gather for monthly outings to get to know each other better. We might discuss movies, books, plays, or just chat and realise others know how we feel at certain sad times such as an anniversary, birthdays. This group makes us feel we are not alone, and we can help each other if need be. Mostly though, we have fun just being with friends, and not sitting drinking coffee in that cafe alone. Contact the Parish Office for more details.
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Ecumenical Group Recently a conversation between two men across the road from Hoy Rosary in Barolin Street was overheard. One was assisting the other in a wheel chair and both could be described fairly as “Aussie Battlers”. Both agreed that the church across the road had to be “pretty old” but the surprise came when the question, “Have you ever been inside?” was asked. The response was “No”. The reply was, “You should. It is so relaxing in there. I went in to see. I stayed a half hour. I’ll go again.” The church is not only a building where solace and comfort may be found but foremost it is a home for the people of God, the people of Christian belief. Centuries ago the people of Christian belief became divided. Ecumenism encourages cooperation among Christians to recognise that their unity is greater than what divides them.
From this positive interface, invitations were made to the members of the C.W.L.A to attend the Anglican Mothers’ Union meeting. This was reciprocated by the C.W.L.A members for the Mothers’ Union members to attend their September Meeting. Prayer was the focus of each event and the joyful noise of the morning tea and fellowship at both venues indicated in an open way that each had much to say to the other. We would like to see more people from other denominations join us in this monthly prayer next year. Perhaps, Anglicans and Catholics can plan together for each monthly prayer so that the strengths of each may combine to form a more vibrant liturgy; the venue may alternate between both churches. The building block for a strong foundation has been instituted and the prayerful desire is that an effective and cooperative “kinship” group be established.
The monthly Prayer Meetings that began four years ago have continued on the last Thursday of each month in Holy Rosary Church throughout February to November. A faithful core of Anglicans from the Christ Church Community and members the Catholic Parish Community gather to pray for Christian Unity. After listening to a selected Gospel Reading and a reflection on that reading we are prepared to share confidently with others our thoughts on the Gospel and/or reflection. This confidence and trust has built up over time through our communal Prayer and through the fellowship enjoyed afterwards. Other Christian congregations are invited to attend but so far this seems to occur only in March at the World Day of Prayer where most of the Christian Churches are represented. In March 2020, Holy Rosary has been invited to host the World Day of Prayer. The breakfast for School Chaplaincy Services is also another occasion when all churches come together.
noun the principle or aim of promoting unity among the world’s Christian Churches.
In July, the Christ Church community hosted the monthly Prayer for Christian Unity They took as their focus “there shall be one flock, one shepherd”. (John10: 1 18). In October they again led us in prayer so that Jesus’s prayer to the Father, “that all may be one” would be exemplified.
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The menALIVE ministry was started in Brisbane in 2003 by Robert Falzon, Peter Shakhovskoy and a small group of Catholic men who were actively encouraged by Archbishop Mark Coleridge. The ministry has now spread to 26 dioceses across Australia and New Zealand to become a National Catholic Ministry for men of all ages. When men fully belong and experience a sense of belonging, their wellbeing is enriched and they are prepared and empowered to minister to their families, community and Church. Men are also prepared to develop self-esteem and look for opportunities to support one another. The focus of the group is to commit to daily prayer, to renew their faith in God, to share time, ideas, prepare to be challenged to contribute to the life of the Church and be an initiative at the heart of the Church supporting our priests, religious, and lay ministers. Our menALIVE group is involved in the parish community in various ways: cooking BBQs for parish events and at Shalom Markets, supporting the Pageant of Lights, Bethlehem Live, Scripture Reflection group, parish Lenten programs and very early morning prayers during 24Hours of the Lord. Fr John Daly led the menALIVE in a retreat entitled “Take the Plunge” in October which focussed on baptism and its consequences and the role of men in our parish community.
Fr Peter shared his journey from childhood, education, his working life as a teacher and school principal and call to ordination in the Priesthood at this year’s Men’s Breakfast. The major function this year was the annual Ecumenical Luncheon with guest speaker Deacon Gary Stone. Gary shared some of his experiences and challenges during his time of service in the defence force as an officer, an Army Chaplain, on peace operations, an ordained deacon and now as the founder of Veterans Care Association, focussing on the body, mind and care ministry for veterans. Gary is often asked to baptise, marry and conduct funerals for his military service mates. He ministers to Defence and Australian Federal Police personnel especially those who suffer PTSD afflictions from service overseas, a condition he himself has suffered and continues to experience. Funds from the luncheon have been shared between Veterans Care Association, Bundaberg RSL CARE and Veterans Care to support them financially. MenALIVE is open to men of all ages and inquiries are welcome at the Parish Office or talk to some men after Mass. We’re prepared to listen.
ALL ALIVE MEN WELCOME menALIVE ministry provides weekend retreats and events that delivers relevant talks, personal testimonies, opportunities for discussion in small groups within the space and environment for men to reflect. Experience the dynamic and powerful gathering of men at a menALIVE event and come away inspired and encouraged with a new sense of purpose and mission in life. For more information contact: Joe McCorley 0418 727 845 or Kerry Devine 0418 796 720
“Fully Human Fully Alive!”
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UNITED HEARTS CATHOLIC CHARISMATIC PRAYER GROUP
A core group was formed in October 2016 after Fr John Daly requested that the Catholic charismatic prayer group be re-introduced. Our first public prayer meeting was on Tuesday 21 February 2017. Meetings take place in the Novakoski Centre every first and third Tuesday commencing 7.00pm. Our logo portrays two hearts: the Sacred Heart of Jesus in red and the Immaculate Heart of Mary in blue. Their hearts are always totally united. As a group we desire to be totally led by the Holy Spirit, discerning his will with united hearts, thus our name: United Hearts Catholic Charismatic Prayer Group. A “Life in the Spirit Seminar” (LISS), available for everyone, is conducted over a series of six weeks and is held annually. The seminar provides a way to learn more about prayerful living in the Spirit. For Catholics who have experienced the sacramental graces, Jesus gives a new and fuller relationship with Himself. Many people speak of and reflect upon “being prepared” for what lies ahead. The Catholic Charismatic renewal prepares us for a deeper infilling of the Holy Spirit who opens all people to a lifechanging relationship with Jesus Christ and experience the love of the Father. The Holy Spirit empowers us for personal holiness, renewed Catholic life and evangelization – a fitting preparation for the Plenary Council 2020 as we listen deeply to what the Spirit is saying to the Church.
Younger people are very welcome to “come and see” and hopefully continue to promote and carry on the charismatic renewal into the future. The following words come from one of the participants of our LISS this year: The prayer group is very much like the early Church we read about in the scriptures; the coming together in humility, love and praise for God and for each other. We sing joyful songs of praise followed by periods of prayer and silence that establishes a sense of reverence. There is great spiritual power in being united together with the sole focus of praising Jesus….and in seeking to strengthen our connection and bond with Him. There are reflective sharings based on Bible readings which are relevant to our lives today. Sometimes there are prayers for each of us and “laying of hands” for healing, spiritual strength and guidance. Often when we leave, we feel energised, at peace and joyful. We take this joy and peace to our homes, our work places and into our lives. Reading scriptures and immersing in prayer each morning and night sustains the spiritual enrichment of our lives. The heart of the renewal is the conviction that the normal Christian life is a life lived “in the Spirit”. This means that the Spirit is at work in e very aspect of the Christian life. Be ready for a new time of the Holy Spirit!
Sr Mary Della
WITH THANKS TO OUR INDIVIDUAL SPONSORS Dorothy Courtes - Arturo Glinoga - Beth Connolly - Blanket Buddies - Passionist Family Groups Biddy Dwyer in memory of Desmond John and Francis Desmond Dwyer, and the deceased relatives and friends of the Avington & Dwyer families GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 21
PASSIONIST FAMILY GROUPS Who is Jesus for us today? Anyone who hears Him, really hears Him, hears the same invitation as those early disciples, “Come follow me”. Our question is not what we are looking for, but whom? The spirit of the Passionist Family Groups is based on the recognition that everyone is called to show an active holiness in their everyday life. Visit the sick, phone the lonely, cook meals for others, and more. These are expressions of everyday Christian living that takes religion out of that “once a week” mentality. They are not social groups, they are gospel-based inclusive families whose members are committed to love, support and care for one another. Achieving that closeness is spending time together in simple activities such as picnics, casserole nights, and supporting one another especially in times of need. The Passionist Family Groups align with Jesus’ vision of people forming community. It is not just about monthly get togethers but about who we are and everything we do. We have a responsibility to care for others, and that includes our planet. We have an opportunity to make a difference and so think broadly about the implication of Jesus’ vision of “A Family for All”. What would we like to see in 2019? Simply, to follow the aims of the Passionist Family Group movement. To live and love like the early Christians; to share Christian life together, to support one another, especially in times of need, to give example to others, especially children, and to build community. St Paul and St James both warn that love without action is useless. We are called first and foremost to “love one another”. Being in a Family Group is a wonderful opportunity of seeing God at work amongst us. From Fr Peter McGrath, founder of the Passionist Family Group movement, said: “Family Groups do not take away the difficulties of life but give us the strength and courage to live as followers of Christ.”
Helen Mackie Co-ordinator
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Fr Peter McGrath
Founder of the Passionist Family Group Movement
From the Archives
The big project last year was to organise the records of various pastoral and financial councils from the 1950s onwards into a manageable system. This has now been prepared for possible retrieval. There is time currently to move on. Being prepared means not only storing artefacts and documents in a reasonable and safe way for posterity but also being able to respond to “callers out of the blue” and sharing with them your knowledge. Sometimes, the question may be answered immediately but it could involve some research before the answer, either positively or negatively, can be given. In the magazine’s last edition, the Y.C.W. Athletics Shield donated by Bishop Tynan, was mentioned. It was in a very sorry state! The time came for trying to give it a clean, but how best to do that? The answer was use “Silvo”. The trophy silver was very grimy so there seemed no other alternative but to “give it a go”. Happily, it has done the trick! Now another cleaning aid has to be tried on the scroll work. Some time ago another framed photo of Father Rossolini was donated anonymously to the Archive. The inscription attached to the frame indicated it was part of the property of the Hibernian Society and was dated 1884. It too has been cleaned but the original ornate frame (although not in good repair) has been retained. In being prepared to seek assistance Classic Framing offered to do the work for no remuneration! It was gratefully received. It is hoped to soon have the photograph hanging on the wall in the Archive Office along with the soon to be sparkling Athletics Trophy. On the 25th October Bishop Michael’s “Calling all Historians” occured. This is an attempt to coordinate the practices used in the various parishes as well as looking at what has been established in the Diocesan Archive Unit. It was interesting to learn what other parishes are doing or have done regarding their records and artefacts. It also offered opportunities for networking, sharing expertise, and gaining a feeling that one is not working in a vacuum. There is some feeling of disquiet in managing the records of societies /sodalities that no longer function or play a part in our modern Church Life. These documentations bear witness to the dreams, visions, and practicalities of local Church men, women, and Young People who were prepared to give of their time and talent in personal and community prayer along with practical work to ensure that God’s work in their day was done. May we in our turn take up the baton for future historians to see that we, in our turn, have been as generous.
Cathryn King Archives Co-ordinator
In the true spirit of the season, wishing you peace and joy from
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Advocacy of Human Rights and Advocacy of Women: The CWL is a member of World Union of Catholic Women’s Organisations in which we are prepared to learn about the other members throughout the world. We support a WUUWO representative at the United Nations. Each month we receive a monthly update of what is happening. Each May a liturgy is prepared by a different country to focus on an area of concern. Shirley Pitts is our Diocesan Representative. In March our ladies were involved in the World Day of Prayer Service which was held at the Salvation Army Citadel.
Prayer: Under the patronage of Mary Help of Christians our members are prepared to read and discuss the gospel of the day at our monthly meetings. Many of our members are involved in the various prayer groups. Each month some members attend the Prayer for Christian Unity service.
As part of Bundaberg Catholic Women’s League involvement in a variety of areas we have been prepared to Support of Parish Life: Our members are prepared to support our Stewardship Parish though being involved in the many available ministries. Each month we are prepared to support the Anointing Mass held at St Mary’s after which we host a morning tea with the support of students from St Mary’s and St Joseph’s. It is great to see the positive interaction between the older and younger members of our parish, from laying on of hands to serving the morning tea. Friendships and Socials: After attending a friendship morning tea hosted by the Anglican Mothers’ Union we were prepared to reciprocate. Our event involved a prayer service, a guest speaker Pam Cooper from Edon Place, St Mary’s choir and morning tea. The morning tea was a success during which fellowship was enjoyed. Each year we are prepared to plan for our annual celebration of St Patrick with a function. This year the function was a great success due to the input into the concert by Fr Andrew, Suellen Cusack-Greensill and Kate Hardisty. St Mary’s choir also featured. We were very appreciative of the support of those who attended, who provided prizes and those who volunteered their time. Thank you. Twice a year we enjoy a luncheon at Café 1928. Members are encouraged to bring along a friend. This year the Younger Set has been prepared to meet for dinner on the 2nd Tuesday of the month. This dinner allows us to exchange views and relevant news about CWL. Charitable Works: From Our St Patrick’s Day function, we are prepared to use funds that are raised to meet our commitments such as the Priest’s Bursary. Also this year we have donated to Drought appeal, the Missions Society of St Columbian on the occasion of their centenary, Edon Place, St Vincent De Paul, Scripture Union Chaplaincy, the Bundaberg Religious Instruction Co-operative and to Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans. From the proceeds of the raffles held at our luncheons we were able to donate to Melanoma Research Foundation and Make a Wish Foundation. Social Justice: We are prepared to be kept abreast of social Justice issues through our Diocesan Social Justice Convenor, Katrina Thompson. With this knowledge we learn about these issues and respond appropriately. Recently we were involved in signing the petition re the Abortion Bill.
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Welcome: Our ladies are prepared to welcome any lady who is interested to join us. For further information please contact Maureen on 4152 1263. Wishing everyone the blessings of Christmas.
Maureen Ewing - President
Dreams & Visions of the BLANKET BUDDIES The Blanket Buddies group started in July 2011 with three ladies. We now have more than 40 people on our phone list. We have encouraged anyone interested to join for fellowship and learning to crochet or knit. It has become a group of women who care not just for those in need but for each other as well. As the founding member my goal was and is to never find anyone either cold or in need. Over the years we have reached out with just short of 7,000 blankets plus beanies, scarves, premy baby needs and shawls for nursing homes. We have taken the Angel Group under our canopy of love by providing groceries on the first Wednesday of each month to help those in need. We donate cash to other charities and blankets to St Vincent de Paul, Cancer Council and Impact. We raise money for wool by manning sausage sizzles at St Patrickâ€™s School, BBQs at Shalom College, raffles at Spotlight. Some generous parishioners donate cash. We always have wool on hand. With Godâ€™s help we will continue with our Dreams and Visions not forgetting any one in need, and always listening for those in need of our ministry. Every stitch is a stitch of Love.
Noreen Plath The Post Funeral Support Group Throughout this year our group has been prepared to offer support and comfort to those who have suffered a bereavement. Initially a phone call is made; this is followed by a visit if requested. Many people do not realise that for a year after a death a memorial cross is hung at the back of the respective church in which the funeral was held. After the year has passed our group is privileged to be able to deliver the cross to family members, and to offer some consolation at this time. Twice a year we assist at the Memorial Services and join in the fellowship which follow these services. Many of the bereaved have found peace and comfort in remembering their loved ones at these services. In October a Pregnancy and Infant Loss Memorial Service is held for relatives and friends who come together to remember those babies who have died before, during or shortly after birth. Our members have been prepared to offer support at this service which is held as close as possible to October 15th recognised nationally as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. All our members deem it a privilege to have been prepared to provide the bereaved of our Catholic Community with support. We extend our thanks to the Funeral Ministry Team members for their assistance. Thanks to Judith who retired this year for her compassionate support. New members would be warmly welcomed to join our group. Members: Maureen Ewing (Co-ordinator); Margaret Healey; Beth Donovan, Denise Schneider; Bev Walker, Lyn Callaghan.
Maureen Ewing GOOD NEWS 2018 | Page 25
MATER MISERICORDIAE HOSPITAL BUNDABERG Mater Bundaberg has a long history of providing high quality healthcare to our community and we work diligently to ensure our patients receive quality personalised care. To ensure that we are meeting industry and our own high standards we regularly undertake auditing and assessment of all areas of our hospital. Mater Hospital Bundaberg recently underwent a detailed quality accreditation survey by an external third party. The accreditation involved a gap analysis and full certification ISO 9001:2015 as well as full certification of the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards. The auditors undertake an extensive review of all clinical and non-clinical aspects of our hospital functions over a number of days. Not surprisingly, Mater Bundaberg achieved an excellent survey outcome of NIL findings or recommendations. This is a great outcome and is a reflection of the high quality patient care provided by our team of dedicated and professional staff and clinicians at the Mater Bundaberg. It is pleasing to receive such high industry recognition of our commitment to maintaining the best level of quality in all areas of our performance and is due to wonderful team work between all of our Hospital Managers and Quality Management team. We match our excellent clinical performance with a high level of personal care to provide a service that is holistic and based upon the values of our founder Catherine McAuley. Catherine was an amazing example of someone “reaching out” to her community and beyond. Additionally, Mater Bundaberg hospital has a long reputation of providing excellent support to our surgeons and as such we routinely keep abreast of industry and technological changes relating to equipment used within our operating theatre. The Mater Hospital’s highly successful inpatient rehabilitation service has been extremely well received by patients and the medical community. Rehabilitation is a specialised service that is focused on improving, maintaining or restoring physical strength, cognition and mobility and is frequently required after a major health issue such as surgery or stroke. The experienced rehabilitation team works with each patient and their family to design a personalised, intensive and comprehensive therapy program with individual goals and objectives. Mater Hospital Bundaberg is thankful to our community for the wonderful support that we regularly receive in our role of providing exceptional healthcare to the community we proudly serve.
Executive Officer, Mater Hospital Bundaberg.
Anaesthetics l Laparoscopic Bariatric Services l Oral & Maxillo Facial Surgery Cardiology l Orthopaedic l Diabetics Education l Paediatrics l Day Oncology l Palliative Care l Day Surgery l Pastoral Care l Ear, Nose and Throat l Physiotherapy l Gastroenterology l Rheumatology l Infection Control l Visiting Haematologist/ l Mater House Accommodation Oncologist l Medical Haematologist/ l Sleep Studies Oncologist l Rehabilitation l Lymphedema Clinic l Wound Clinic Mater House accommodation units for patients, family and friends located on the grounds of the hospital. For bookings please phone 4153 9539 l l l
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The commitment, dedication and preparedness of the members, volunteers and staff allow the Society to offer these wide-ranging support services. Also, and very importantly, the generosity of the local community to continue donating clothing, household goods and furniture to Vinnies enables the Society to operate and maintain quality Vinnies shops.
The concept to “Be Prepared” is familiar to the members, volunteers and staff of the St Vincent de Paul Society. In a sense, it is a formative purpose of the Society: to be prepared to assist people in need. It is the reason the St Vincent de Paul Society was formed and is why the Society continues to exist in communities across Queensland and throughout Australia. The St Vincent de Paul Society (Vinnies) assisted more than 1.8 million people in Australia last year. This level of support and commitment requires its members, volunteers and staff to be prepared to meet with and assist people in all manner of circumstances. It’s not always possible to resolve all problems. If assistance can be provided it usually is resolvable, whether it be financial, material, social, spiritual or referrals to other relevant services. Vinnies members, volunteers and staff assist people every day who are experiencing poverty, marginalisation, homelessness or who are at risk of homelessness. Although poverty might not always be recognisable, at least one in eight Australians are currently affected by poverty. According to ACOSS’s (Australian Council of Social Service) Poverty in Australia 2018 report, more than 3 million Australians (13.2%) are living below the relative poverty line, which equates to one in eight adults and one in six children living in poverty. Although the definition of poverty can be interpreted differently, and most poverty estimates are based on relative poverty not absolute poverty (which is more difficult to measure), there is no doubt that many people across Australia are affected by poverty in one form or another. Whether it’s living with the systemic and prolonged effects of poverty, or whether it’s homelessness, marginalisation, or struggling with immediate social crisis or financial adversity, there are many people who at different times in their lives need some sort of support. That’s where Vinnies helps. The St Vincent de Paul Society always needs to be prepared to encounter, reach out and assist people who need support for a variety of reasons. This year we assisted more than 4500 people in the Bundaberg region, offering a range of services including food relief, providing clothing, household items and furniture, financial assistance, overseas development, disaster relief (including supporting drought affected farmers), offering no interest loans, financial counselling and of course Christmas hampers and toys to more than 200 families.
Vinnies stores provide value shopping and are a valuable resource to people on low incomes, enabling them to buy quality items at affordable prices. The proceeds from the sale of donated goods in Vinnies shops is used to provide resources and support to people in need through a range of services and programs offered by the Society. Another valuable contribution people can make to Vinnies is to volunteer or become a member. Volunteering with Vinnies allows people of all ages, regardless of experience, skills or circumstances, to get involved in the community and positively contribute. The benefits of volunteering are well documented. As a Vinnies volunteer or a Conference member people enjoy all the benefits of volunteering while being able to offer a “hand up” to people in need, respecting their dignity, sharing hope and providing services to support and encourage people to overcome adversity and improve their circumstances in life. Looking forward to 2019, the Society’s members, volunteers and staff will continue in their many ways to be prepared to offer support to people in need. Although Christmas is a time of joy for most people, for many it can be a time of stress and hardship. Every year (and this year again) as the end of another year approaches the Society’s members are prepared to assist families during the Christmas season. Each year the Society works to alleviate some of the stress and financial concerns some people and families in the community encounter during this time. Thank you to all the members, volunteers and staff who have given their time and worked in a variety of roles in 2018 to ensure Vinnies remains relevant in the community as a respected charitable organisation. Thank you to the Parish Office staff, parishioners, Shalom Catholic College and St Joseph’s, St Mary’s and St Patrick’s Catholic Primary Schools for their ongoing support, especially with the Christmas hampers and toys. Also thank you to the organisations and people in the Bundaberg community who have donated goods or given other support to Vinnies this year. On behalf of the members, volunteers and staff of the St Vincent de Paul Society Bundaberg, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Vinnies stores provide VALUE SHOPPING for clothing, household goods and furniture. SHOP at a Vinnies store and support the St Vincent de Paul Society, with all proceeds used to fund the Society’s support services. RECYCLE your clothing, household goods and furniture at Vinnies. VOLUNTEER or become a MEMBER to be active in the community, to develop new skills and experiences in a variety of roles, to connect with people and to contribute to social change. 18 McLean St 4151 5455 | 68 Johanna Blvd 4131 0200 | 37 See St Bargara 4159 2000 To donate furniture: 1800 846 643 | email@example.com | qld.vinnies.org.au
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Bundaberg Christian Gift and Bookstore Be Prepared and Be Informed
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you (Mt 28:19-20). Pope Francis, in his Apostolic Exhortation on the Proclamation of the Gospel in Today’s World – The Joy of the Gospel – refers to the above Scripture in quoting “In these verses we see how the risen Christ sent his followers to preach the Gospel in every time and place, so that faith in him might spread to every corner of the earth.” In contemplating Jesus’ directive, each of us would ask at least two questions: how am I able to encourage discipleship; and what did Jesus teach his disciples – how do I, today, interpret the parables and all the various conversations Jesus had with his followers. The disciples at this stage were probably more in the dark than we are – until of course, Pentecost, which sealed the New Covenant.
To this end, the Parish Bookstore was wisely incorporated into the Parish Office a few years ago for the use of our parish community and anyone else who cares to make use of it. Apart from gift products and general prayer aids, a large number of publications ranging from those based on theology and interpretative publications, to real life spiritual stories, have been taken up by our customers. It is the hope of all of us who serve through the Bookstore that the parish will reap much spiritual benefit through reading available literature and entering into the exciting world of researching the Bible and Jesus’ call to discipleship. We wish you all a very happy and holy Christmas and a fruitful New Year. I would like to express my appreciation to all those who carry out their Ministry in the Bookstore and also Office Staff who assist on many occasions.
As a community, we are familiar with and are fed by the Church’s Liturgies as were the early Christians. However, we live in rapidly changing times and need to contend with a growing secularism that appears to many to ‘have all the answers’ as we strive to maintain family and social values that we are often told are outdated – not modern!
Geraldine Caesar Anne Dettyl Christine Francis Margaret Healy Emily Iruthayasmy Kim Kirby Mary Peckett Margaret Schultze Monica Pearce
In following the Bible we know there is the ‘Divine Plan’ but we Independent Financial Advisers also know that we have been directed, as Christ’s disciples, to play our part in the future of this world and this Church. Contact Chris onespecially 0428 415 352 to discuss your Superannuation and Investment needs. Bookstore Co-ordinator We are grateful that we have Church Leaders, Diocesan and Parish Leaders, who work tirelessly to Chris Palmer has been in the industry for over 35 years and can help with Self-Managed Super Funds, instruct and guide us. We also play our part, aided by Retirement Planning, Estate Planning, Investments and many other areas. further education in the form of spiritual literature provided by advocates such as Pope Francis gifted C2Gand is notother owned, controlled or contracted by any Bank, Insurance Company or Superannuation Provider and Theologians, Clergy and Lay People. Theseyou authors takethat is in your best interest. can provide with advice time and effort to compile the information we are then able to critically evaluate for our own Chris edification. We planner specifically is a ﬁnancial for GCR Financial Pty Ltd t/as C2G Financial Services ABN and 61 133 869 185 it- AFS & ACL 333543 - 91 Woondooma Street, Bundaberg need to take a new look at the Bible interpret in our times. That doesn’t mean that the Bible or its message has changed, we have.
Independent Financial Advisers Contact Chris on 0428 415 352 to discuss your Superannuation and Investment needs. Chris Palmer has been in the industry for over 35 years and can help with Self-Managed Super Funds, Retirement Planning, Estate Planning, Investments and many other areas. C2G is not owned, controlled or contracted by any Bank, Insurance Company or Superannuation Provider and can provide you with advice that is in your best interest. Chris is a ﬁnancial planner for GCR Financial Pty Ltd t/as C2G Financial Services ABN 61 133 869 185 - AFS & ACL 333543 - 91 Woondooma Street, Bundaberg
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Read the Gospel and Colour
Luke 1: 39-56
Mary visits her cousin Elizabeth
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Let the kids in the kitchen. Be prepared for some messy fingers!
MARS BAR CHRISTMAS CRACKLES Ingredients
• 200 g Mars bar (chopped) • 2 tbs pouring cream • 2 tsp cocoa powder (sifted) • 3 cups Rice Bubbles • Canola oil spray • 100 g white chocolate • 24 Smarties
Method 1. Spray a little canola spray into 2 x 12 cup mini-muffin trays. 2. Melt the Mars Bars, cream and cocoa in a glass bowl over simmering water. The bowl should not touch water. Stir the mixture until smooth. 3. Put the Rice Bubbles in a separate large bowl, pour in the chocolate mixture and stir until well mixed. 4. Spoon the mixture into the muffins tray and press down gently. 5. Refrigerate for 2 hours and turn out onto a tray to decorate. 6. Melt white chocolate in the microwave checking & stirring it at 30 second intervals. 7. Turn the crackles upside down and spoon the chocolate on. Finish with a red chocolate Smartie on top of each one.
WE WISH YOU A MERRY CHRISTMAS
2018 annual Christmas magazine for the Catholic Parish of Bundaberg