Volume 54, No 2 JUNE 2018 $2.00
Bishop McKenna’s Message A message to God’s people of the Diocese of Bathurst about Plenary Council 2020
Dear Friends in Christ,
ope Francis has approved the calling of a Plenary Council of the Catholic Churches in Australia. Below is a copy of his message, which was released on Pentecost Sunday. At Pentecost, we see the Holy Spirit transform a timid and inward-looking group of believers into a brave Church capable of communicating the Gospel to everyone. This will be the fifth Australian Plenary Council: the first of the new century; the first since the Second Vatican Council and the new Code of Canon Law that resulted from it. Canon 445 of that Code states that such a Council “is to ensure that the pastoral needs of the People of God in its territory are provided for. While it must always respect the universal law of the Church, it has power of governance, especially legislative power. It can, therefore, determine whatever seems opportune for an increase of faith, for the ordering of common pastoral action, for the direction of morality and for the preservation, introduction and defence of a common ecclesiastical discipline.”
All bishops currently holding office in Australia must participate in the Council and have a deliberative vote. A similar number of clergy, religious and lay faithful are to be invited and have a consultative vote. (There is a more detailed account of these rules in Canon 443). The formal sessions of the Plenary Council will take place in Adelaide in late 2020; and in Sydney the following year. However, the Bishops’ Conference, which is convoking the Council, wants the two years of preparation to involve as many of the faithful as possible. I urge every Catholic in our Diocese to take part in the opportunities that will be provided, so that the voice
A message from the Holy Father on the occasion of the inauguration of the 2020 Plenary Council
extend cordial greetings and prayerful good wishes as the Catholic community in Australia joins in prayer this Pentecost Sunday to launch the immediate preparations for the forthcoming 2020 Plenary Council. Upon all taking part in the preparation process, I invoke the Holy Spirit’s gifts of wisdom, harmony and openness to the Lord’s will for the future of his pilgrim Church in the country. It is my hope that through patient dialogue and faith-filled discernment, the conciliar journey will confirm the Catholics in Australia in a spirit of fraternal unity and missionary discipleship, thus enabling them to be a leaven of holiness, justice and reconciliation in today’s rapidly changing society. As a pledge of the sustaining grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, I willingly impart my Apostolic Blessing. FRANCISCUS PP
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of God may be heard, through the variety of instruments that we are, as a glorious symphony. The little group of believers, even before they received the power of the Spirit, were praying. This Plenary process will yield good fruit only if it is carried along and guided by sincere and constant prayer. Please pray that the Holy Spirit will work powerfully among us; and that we will say yes every day to the Lord and Giver of Life. +Michael McKenna Bishop of Bathurst Memoria of Mary, Mother of the Church 2018
Plenary Council 2020 What’s it all about?
he Catholic churches in Australia have officially launched the Plenary Council 2020. Pope Francis has given his approval and blessing, allowing a three-year conversation to commence about the future shape of the church and its mission.
Launched on 20th May, the Feast of Pentecost, the Plenary Council 2020 begins now with a year of listening and dialogue. It will culminate in gatherings in 2020 and 2021 to consider the church’s governance, laws and practice. The Council organisers will take submissions from church organisations and agencies, parishes and individuals to help form an agenda. “This is not a process for the ‘inner circle’; this is a bottom-up process that will allow us all to consider how we can draw people closer to the message and teachings of Jesus in
contemporary Australian society”, Plenary Council President, Perth Archbishop Timothy Costelloe, said. During 2019 there will be a period of discernment and re-listening. Contributions will be collated by the Plenary Council organisers and used to develop some discussion documents for the Plenary Council gatherings. Two historic national gatherings will follow; one to be held in Adelaide in October 2020, and a second, decision-making session in Sydney in the first half of 2021. Decisions will be submitted to Rome, to ensure they are in harmony with Church doctrine. Plenary Council Facilitator, Lana Turvey-Collins, visited with Bishop Michael McKenna and the Steering Committee of the Diocesan Pastoral Council in May. Lana spoke about the discernment and listening process and said the new website would help
all people participate in conversations with friends and family, large groups and small, to consider the Plenary Council’s central question: “What do you think God is asking of us in Australia at this time?” “The Plenary Council will, like no other event in the church’s history in Australia, allow all Catholics to shape a discussion about the future of our church”, Lana said. “The website now has material to support the important discussions that will take place across the country and I encourage people to consider how they will participate in this historic moment”. Visit the Plenary Council website at www.plenarycouncil.catholic.org.au.
Source: The Catholic Leader and Plenary Council website
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Contact the CDF today to check if you have any unclaimed money and to update your details.
1800 451 760 Email: email@example.com Disclosure: Deposits with CDF are guaranteed by CDPF Limited, a company established by the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference for this purpose. We welcome your investment with the CDF rather than with a profit oriented commercial organisation as a conscious commitment by you to support the Charitable, Religious and Educational works of the Catholic Church. CDF, nor the Trustees of the Roman Catholic Church for the Diocese of Bathurst are prudentially supervised by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority; contributions to CDF do not obtain the benefit of the depositor protection provisions of the Banking Act 1959; CDF is designed for investors who wish to promote the charitable purposes of CDF. AFSL No: 497040
C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 3
Diocese offers Glenray a lifeline
ess than two weeks after a devastating fire destroyed Glenray Industries’ commercial laundry and main offices, the team of dedicated staff and management have amazed even itself at how quickly it has been able to rise from the ashes and continue operations, as close to normal as possible. The day after the fire, the Catholic Diocese of Bathurst approached Glenray to offer the use of the old St Catherine’s Nursing Home facility, which is equipped with a commercial laundry. Within 48 hours of the catastrophy, Glenray was able to resume its operations from the new location.
Bishop Michael with some of Glenray’s supported employees
Last week, Bishop Michael McKenna visited with members of the Glenray team and was happy to see the former nursing home facility being put to good use. “It is wonderful to see the former St Catherine’s full of life again. I am happy the Diocese was able to help Glenray in its time of need”, he said. Bishop Michael met with Mrs Susan Williams, CEO Glenray Industries and Mr Ian Hooper, Glenray Industries board member, who were both extremely grateful for the generosity shown by the Diocese. Mrs Williams said everything has been running as smoothly as possible. “It is an amazing achievement in just seven working days”, she said. Glenray’s staff, which includes a high number of people in supported employment, are able to sort and pack linen in the new location, with trucks then able to distribute it to clients all over the Central West. Bishop Michael assured Mr Hooper and Mrs Williams that Glenray was welcome to use the site for as long as necessary. As part of the visit, Bishop Michael spent time with some of the supported staff, who were keen to show him how they have been helping to make the building feel more like home. Kimbalee Clews
Susan Williams, Bishop Michael and Ian Hooper
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Sr Patricia Powell awarded Order of Australia Medal
ister Patricia Powell rsm was just 18 years old when she entered the convent, her calling to serve others a driving force behind her decision to become a
Now 75, she has spent almost 60 years making a difference to the lives of individuals and communities and has been named a recipient of the Order of Australia Medal. Sr Patricia was recognised for service to the Catholic Church and the Diocese of Bathurst. She is a member of the Bathurst Diocesan Pastoral Council, former co-ordinator of Adult Faith Education in the Diocese (2003-2007) and consultant and facilitator of Rahamim Ecology Centre since 2013. She was previously Director at the Centre (2009-2013) and was one of its founding members (2005). She has also been the leader of the Bathurst Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy, on the General Council of Union of Sisters of Mercy of Australia and involved in a Community Development Partnership with Indigenous people in Dubbo. Reflecting on the direction life has taken her, Sr Patricia said her decision to join the Sisters of Mercy was based on their values, which resonated with her own. Since joining the Order, she has held many roles which, although diverse, have been equally rewarding. Of particular note was her time in Dubbo, working with the Indigenous community which she said “was a unique and privileged experience”. It was through her work with the Indigenous community she had her first awakening of the need to care for environment. In her current role at Rahamim Ecology Centre, she aims to assist in educating others, promoting change in the way humans relate to their natural environment. Through Rahamim, Sr Patricia and those who work
alongside her have been able to raise environmental awareness, initially in the local community and now across Australia, through the Mercy network. Reflecting on what has been achieved, Sr Patricia is quick to point out she hasn’t done it alone. “Really, I’ve done nothing. This (award) is for everyone who has supported or assisted Rahamim in any way”, she said. As for the future, her goal is clear. “I want to build a human society that is more caring about the environment which supports the life we love”. Story and front cover image courtesy of Jacinta Carroll - Western Advocate
C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 5
Diocese and Housing Plus partner to provide state-of-the-art NDIS facility
ogether in partnership, the Diocese of Bathurst and Housing Plus have received approval from Bathurst Regional Council to redevelop a Diocesan owned property in Vine Street, Bathurst. The development will see five state of the art, purpose built units constructed for people in our community living with a range of disability needs. This exciting new initiative will provide accommodation and around the clock care for five residents. It will see the mission of the local church put into practice, providing each individual with access to services that can help them achieve their personal goals and “live life to the full”. The units have been designed to
offer independence and choice, within an active 24 hour residential support setting. Private units will feature kitchenettes, two bedrooms and courtyards with private access. The accommodation will be managed by Housing Plus, with support services provided by specialist disability provider, Challenge Community Services. Housing Plus is a leading not-forprofit community organisation, and an accredited National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) provider. They seek to provide safe and secure accommodation, with integrated support services, across the Central Western Region.
Challenge Community Services’ mission is to assist people to reach their potential through innovative and people-focused services. Originating in Tamworth more than 60 years ago, it now has 68 sites across NSW, providing people with special care needs the opportunity to live independently in a safe and stable environment. Building works are scheduled to commence in July, with completion likely in mid 2019. If you are eligible for NDIS specialist accommodation and would like further information, please contact Housing Plus on 1800 603 300 or enquire online www.housingplus.com.au Kimbalee Clews
Crowd left speechless by young student’s powerful words
he words that left the biggest mark on Bathurst’s Anzac Day service were spoken by a teenager wise beyond her years.
Each year on Anzac Day, the RSL Sub Branch invites a Bathurst school student to deliver the commemoration address. MacKillop College’s Captain, Daisy Pike, had that honour this year and did not let the significance of addressing veterans and their families escape her. Ms Pike was in a unique position, being able to draw on her own experience touring the western battle fields in Europe with her school in 2016. Her address set the scene of the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial in France, the way the sun peeks through the pines, how the earth has been disturbed, and the innate sense of calm that falls over the area, despite the bloodshed it represents. “Beneath this beautiful European landscape, scars are still obvious”, she said. “The violence that shook this land 100 years ago still haunts the earth and those on it”. As she continued her address, Ms Pike encouraged young people to not just remember the sacrifice of soldiers, but take action in their daily lives to ensure their sacrifice led to lasting change. “If we, as the future of our country, are to truly honour these brave young men and women that gave up so much for our guaranteed safety, our secure democracy, and simply our lives, we must show respect through action”, she said.
Daisy Pike giving her powerful address “Whether it be through future peacekeeping, through genuine respect for one another, or by the virtue of gratitude, it will be through these actions of humility that we will be ensuring that our soldiers fell for a generation that will contribute to this planet, contribute in a way that will mean future devastation alike to past worldly conflicts can never terrorise us again”. Following her address, sub branch president David Mills said this was one of the few times in his life he had been speechless, and “if that is what the future of Australia looks like, could Miss Pike and her peers take over tomorrow”. As she made her way back to her seat, her eyes glistened with emotion, making it clear that she meant every word of her powerful address. Courtesy of Rachel Chamberlainn, Western Advocate
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Photo: Chris Seabrook
So much more than mail
here’s a new business in Bathurst. Maybe you’ve spotted the little car donning the JLS Mail Link signage, or you may have had the pleasure of bumping into Josh from JLS at the Post Office, as he collects the mail for his new customers. It’s an exciting time for any new business but the story behind the creation of JLS Mail Link is one of incredible love and determination by a Mum and Dad who just want the best for their boy.
Just like a CEO needs help to do their job, Josh also needs an assistant to run this great service. He has an assistant/ support worker to drive his car, help him deliver the mail and assist him to carry out his daily tasks. They can also step up and get the job done on days when Josh may not be able to manage the delivery himself, ensuring that the mail will always be delivered on time. The Chancery Office has recently become a customer of JLS Mail Link and is delighted with the service provided. “Signing up with JLS has not only saved us time in our day, it’s one less job we have to worry about”, said Tony Eviston, Chancellor of the Diocese of Bathurst.
JLS has been created by Chris and Vanessa Shearman for their son, Josh, a young man who has Non-Verbal Autism and a bundle of joy to give to the world. “We created JLS to give Josh a purpose and quality of life. We have always had a vision for Josh to live an inclusive life and to be a valued member of his community. We wanted a business that would give him that purpose and connection. Our objective was to create something that would service the Bathurst community, create relationships, develop connections and give Josh a meaningful, fulfilled life”, said Vanessa. After considering Josh’s skills, as well as his likes and dislikes, his parents thought it best to create something that involved people, transport and skill building embracing what Josh liked and was good at. This includes greeting people, driving around town, carrying a bag, being happy and getting to know people. “A mail courier business sounded like the perfect fit”, said Vanessa. “After researching what we could do, seeing the
Josh Shearman success stories of other families creating similar businesses and realising the need for this type of service in Bathurst, JLS Mail Link was created”. JLS Mail Link collects mail from the Post Office for customers that have a post office box and delivers the mail to that business or person. Josh can also collect any outgoing mail and post it on the same business day. JLS can provide this service to business, schools, individuals... anyone. In providing this service, Josh is not only saving his customers precious time in their busy day, but they are also giving Josh a life of purpose and meaning.
“More importantly, we love seeing Josh’s smiling face when he visits to deliver the mail. It’s wonderful to know we can help Josh in achieving purpose in his life and it’s a fantastic opportunity for him to form relationships within our community”. Josh is a delightful young man who loves to drive around town and greet people, while helping people save time. By developing this business idea, his Mum and Dad have given him the opportunity to be a valued member of his community and provided a wonderful, creative purpose to his life. If you or your business is within a 10km radius of the Bathurst region and you are interested in finding out more about how JLS can save you time, contact JLS Mail Link on 0490 853 405 or visit: www.jlsmaillink.com Kimbalee Clews
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Baristas graduate with flying colours
he Cathedral Youth Group has reached a fantastic milestone, with the first group of young baristas to complete a recognised training course graduating with a qualification in “prepare and serve espresso” and “food hygiene practice”. The statement of attainment can be used to assist the graduates in their endeavours to find work or can be used as a credit for further study. The course is offered by Catholic Education, Diocese of Bathurst (CEDB), which is a Recognised Training Organisation. CEDB has come on board to offer these qualifications to our young people, free of charge, if they are willing to commit one evening a week for six weeks to complete the course. Jane Sullivan, a teacher from MacKillop College, Bathurst has offered her time to teach and deliver the units of competency. In return, the students volunteer for 25 hours in the Youth Group’s social enterprise, the ‘Fully Alive Youth Café, which hopes to be officially trading and open to the public in the near future. This will enable the Group to raise much needed money to fund further programs and qualify more young people to contribute to the community as a whole. People from all walks of life can be a part of this project. The program opens the doors of the Parish to members of the community who have never stepped foot in the Parish before, or haven’t done so for many years. It also allows the community to see the mission of the Church being carried out in a practical manner, showing a very human side and
The graduating class with the Bishop and Fr Paul the wide range of Catholic services catering for all. It is a soft point approach in reaching out to the young people of the Central West. The Cathedral Parish Youth Group meet every Friday evening. For information on this, or the barista training, you can contact me on 0436 478 434. Sarkis Ackmar
NATSIS celebrations in the Diocese
ational Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sunday (NATSIS) will be celebrated across the nation on 1st July 2018.
The Bishop and Group also wrote to parishes, encouraging each to celebrate the day in some special way. “We believe a Diocesan-wide acknowledgement and celebration will reaffirm the Diocese’s commitment to embrace Pope John Paul II’s call in Alice Springs some thirty years ago, for us to be the ‘church that Jesus wants’ us to be, through the contribution and participation of our Indigenous peoples and the ‘joyful reception’ of that by all”, they said.
The theme for this year’s celebration ‘Because of her, we can!’ - encourages us to ‘celebrate and embrace the role that women play in our ministries, our Church and our families’. Women form the backbone of communities across Australia, and this is particularly true for Aboriginal and Islander Catholic Ministries. They are at the forefront of community driven organisations, designed to meet the spiritual and physical needs of Indigenous Catholics. NATSIS is a time for us all to celebrate and embrace the role that women play in our families, ministries and our church. The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Catholic Council (NATSICC) produced a resource kit to assist schools, parishes and
communities to celebrate NATSIS. It provided liturgy resources, stories of faith, prayer suggestions and youth activities designed to highlight the women in our church and community. Prior to the day this year, our Diocesan Pastoral Council’s Participation of Indigenous Catholics Working Group held two workshops, to assist communities prepare.
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Some ways parishes in our Diocese will participate in the celebrations is through an Acknowledgement of Country before the beginning of Masses, liturgies that will include relevant hymns and Prayers of the Faithful, wearing of vestments with Aboriginal motifs, and of course, inclusion of members of the Aboriginal community and our schools where possible. More information about NATSICC and NATSIS is available at www.natsicc. org.au Artwork by Richard Campbell
Making sense of marital challenges
I feel as if my husband’s approach to challenges in life, including our marriage, is very different from mine. It frustrates me and I am sure it frustrates him too. Is there a framework to help us understand what might be going on? How do we move forward?
A. Secure relationships are underpinned by an attitude of ‘whatever we do has to work for both of us’ not ‘I do what suits me and I expect you to put up with it’. The latter attitude might seem to be one that any reasonable person wouldn’t have; however this may be operational under the surface. There is a frame of reference - the “Four Ds” - that can help make sense of many difficulties in a marriage - “Defence”, “Deficit”, “Don’t know how to” and “Don’t care.” Knowing the difference between the Ds can be a challenge. Misunderstanding one D for another is possible. Distinguishing between them can provide relief, understanding, and possibly a way forward with what may have been an impasse in a relationship. A defence is a way of operating that serves to protect oneself and one may not have insight about it. Defences usually have their origins in our childhood, primarily from our relationships with parents. Some arise from our experience of previous relationships. Defences serve to protect us from feelings or experiences of discomfort such as anxiety, being challenged to change, being ashamed, abandoned, feeling out of control. It is self-preservation, at a cost. Examples include ignoring the spouse when an issue is raised, retreating and not returning to apologise, not accepting one’s role in the problem and instead focusing on the spouse’s error, projecting one’s issues on to the spouse, aggressiveness underpinned by “ If I get to you first I won’t feel powerless”. Most responses start with “But …” and the conversation goes nowhere.
Deficits (or sometimes differences) can look like defences and the difference is that a deficit cannot be helped. They are not intentional and need to be identified and ways learnt to live with them. No one is good at everything and everyone has limitations in some areas. There are some deficits that can be particularly challenging in a marriage. For example, one may have a fundamental inability to read facial cues or may be asocial or may not be able to think and talk as fast as the other. Or it might be as basic as a hearing problem. The sooner these deficits are identified and accepted the better; otherwise people fight over them for the rest of their lives and try in vain to change each other. These deficits or differences are ‘perpetual issues’ which are triggered every now and then, leading to arguments with well-practiced and familiar scripts. Sometimes a deficit or a difference may be wrongly interpreted as a defence. For example, John might have a hard time naming and talking about feelings and Jane may interpret that as he is just not willing to talk about his feelings, or that he is not open to her. Jane might begrudge John and try to force him to talk about his feelings (which comes easy and natural to her), to the frustration of both. Some spouses do not know how to do certain things that their spouse and the relationship need them to. One can argue that this is a form of deficit, but generally people can learn them. One very common “don’t know how to” is when a person (or both people) have difficulty with regulating/managing emotions and behaviour when they are angry or anxious. If it can be acknowledged “We
or I don’t know how to…” it can take the shame and blame away; so long as there is a willingness to get assistance to learn Suzanne Carson the skills needed. Don’t care attitude and resulting behaviours completely undermine the marriage and it might be the death knell. It might come as a result of years of resentment with one of the other Ds. At this stage, spouses may take wild swings at each other like two very exhausted boxers. It is important to get help before this level of exhaustion sets in. The concepts of Defence and Deficit are developed by Stan Tatkin, a Psychologist and Marital Therapist, author of books such as ‘Wired for Love’ and ‘Love and War’. You can find him on YouTube as well. Keep in mind it is never helpful to use the above ideas as a weapon against your spouse. The intent of this article is to help couples gain some understanding and hopefully help them get unstuck and seek help if needed. Suzanne Carson Suzanne has been with Centacare since 2000. She specialises in marriage and relationship counselling. She is a trained PACT therapist (Psychobiological Approach to Couple Therapy, developed by Stan Tatkin). She is also an accredited Mental Health Practitioner and Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner. If you would like some helpful advice from our professional team from Centacare, please email your question to firstname.lastname@example.org
Caring for Families Counselling & Mediation Services ADULTS | CHILDREN COUPLES | FAMILIES For more information about Centacare’s services visit centacarecbathurst.com.au or to make an appointment please call 1800 231 118 C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 9
Bishops of Oceania meet in PNG
n April, I represented you in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea (PNG) at the Assembly of Catholic Bishops from the many local churches in Oceania. Almost 100 bishops - from PNG, the Pacific island nations, New Zealand and Australia - meet every four years to share the realities of the diverse circumstances in which we are serving the mission of announcing and living the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This time, our communion with one another and the Bishop of Rome was clearly expressed in the presence among us of Pope Francis’ Secretary of State, Cardinal Parolin. We were also joined by Australia’s Ambassador to the Holy See, Ms Melissa Hitchman. For his opening address, the Cardinal chose to speak on the encyclical Laudato Sì. He emphasised Pope Francis’ message of the intimate connection of all things and how care for our planet comes from care for one another and acknowledgment of God our Creator.
A warm welcome was awaiting the bishops
The conversion of heart that this calls for was made specific in several expert presentations by scientists and economists. In our region, we already have climate change refugees, as the rising sea levels force people from their homes. This is a bigger problem in the western Pacific than in any of the other oceans. In Australia, we know the increasing incidence of El Niño droughts, longer bushfire seasons and more intense weather events. The response to this crisis has been hampered by political paralysis both within nations and internationally. The resources of the small nations in our region are no match for the ambitions of big companies and bigger countries. A renewed conscience of social responsibility - care for one another - is a contribution that Christians can give, but only through a renewal of our own faith in God and our relationships with him and one another. Of course, the bishops talked of many things: the formation in faith of our young people and the related renewal of seminary life and priesthood were at the top of the list. Each country has its own different strengths and weakness in these areas.
Cardinal John Dew, Archbishop of Wellington, NZ and Bishop Michael join the welcoming dance
We heard too about the situation of the church in neighbouring West Papua, an area now ruled by Indonesia. We went out to the nearby parishes, where we encountered the vibrant faith of the local church in Port Moresby. I asked them in St Martin’s, Morata, to pray for us, the people of the Diocese of Bathurst, that our hearts would keep turning back to God, who will raise us up in Jesus Christ. Yours in Christ, +Michael McKenna Bishop of Bathurst Page 10 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
Healing a Nation Through Education
ducation is one of the key ways that Myanmar is moving towards a new age of democracy, after decades of internal conflict and political struggle. Led by Cardinal Charles Maung Bo S.D.B., the Catholic church has prioritised education as the key stepping stone to peace. The 2018 Catholic Mission Church Appeal highlights the important work of Catholic Mission in Myanmar through teacher formation. A decade ago, Cardinal Bo founded a teacher-training centre called the Pyinya Sanyae Institute of Education (PSIE) to help support education across the country, and through teacher training and the implementation of alternative, child-centred education, the church is contributing in a positive way to development. ‘Without the education of the children, Myanmar would have no future. The whole of the Myanmar church has made education the priority,’ Cardinal Bo says. Parishioners in the Diocese of Bathurst are invited to reach out through
financial gifts and prayers this winter in support of the work of the church in Myanmar.
education to the children through interactive learning and child-centred methodologies.
By providing schools with teachers who are well-trained, as well as supporting the construction and renovation of schools, children in even the most remote parts of Myanmar will have better access to quality education.
The system is intended to foster critical thinking ability in children, something which the current state school norm of rote learning - learning by heart - does not encourage. The PSIE institute trains teachers in childcentred education.
Diocesan Director of Catholic Mission in Bathurst, Mike Deasy, said the changes in Myanmar are encouraging, but require more support. “The standard of education we might take for granted has not been present in Myanmar for many decades, due to a number of factors”, he said. “Only now is it beginning to return, thanks to innovative teacher training and school development programs initiated by the Catholic church.” One example can be found in St John’s School, in the remote northern town of Hakha. Established in June 2017, the School hosts over 50 local children from preschool through to Year 1. The teachers at St John’s provide holistic
This innovative program has a flowon effect for children, Mr Deasy says. ‘PSIE’s unique teacher formation program aims at empowering young men and women with the training and skills they need to reach out to communities like Hakha, and support the fullest development of children so that they can have a brighter future’. Watch out for Catholic Mission’s Church Appeal in your parish this year. To find out more about Catholic Mission’s work in Myanmar please visit www.catholicmission.org.au/ churchappeal2018 Matt Poynting
Please support the people of Myanmar to build their nation for future generations. 2018 CHURCH APPEAL Freecall: 1800 257 296 catholicmission.org.au/Myanmar C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 11
Mary MacKillop’s dream alive in Timor-Leste
athurst may seem a long way from the hot, busy streets of downtown Dili in Timor-Leste, but Sister Kathy Jennings, a Sister of St Joseph and longtime member of the Diocese of Bathurst - who has been working in Timor for nearly two years - has learnt life is, in a way, much the same. Reflecting on her time in Dili, Sr Kathy said, “People the world over want the same thing: a safe place to raise their children, a good education and healthy food. There is always more that unites us than divides us. We are all made in the image of God”. Sr Kathy is working with the local staff of Mary MacKillop International (MMI), helping parents and their children in Timor-Leste to learn the skills and knowledge needed to actively engage in learning at home. They regularly meet women like Angelina, who grew up in a poor rural area called Kameia Village, where basic necessities like clean water and electricity were often not accessible. When Angelina was just a child, both her mother and father died. Angelina went to live with her aunty who did not allow her to go to school. She told MMl’s Timor-Leste team how excited she was to send her children to school; giving them an opportunity she never had. But part of Angelina still felt she was letting her children down. In Timor-Leste, particularly in rural areas, most parents like Angelina are illiterate, because many of them did not have the opportunity to go to school. In response to these challenges, MMl’s
Sr Kathy with MMI staff and children in Dili Parent Program gives the poorest and most neglected the opportunity to access vital learning programs, encouraging parents to learn the importance of education and help their kids improve their learning outcomes at school. When a teacher from her children’s school told her about the MMI Parent Program, Angelina signed up for a 10week course to learn basic reading and writing. She later told MMI’s team: “I have no experience about how to write and read… but when I attend this training with parents program, I have bit of confidence to write even not much but at least can help my little girl with something. I really appreciated and big thank to the team of this program for provide us a lot of skills that I never dream for… it’s really help me to teach
my daughter at home with read, write and singing… now I can be good mother for my children”. Sister Kathy has this message for Australians, “It is inspiring to see young women like Angelina being equipped and empowered to be their own leaders in the home and in their communities - they are living proof that Mary MacKillop’s dream of an education for all is possible”. Mary MacKillop International needs to raise $26,000 to give parents in poor communities access to their vital learning programs. Please reach out and help give more children like Angelina’s the chance to receive the support they need in their home. You can donate via their website - www. mmi.org.au/donate. Julie Freeman
Welcome Fr Mathew
ishop McKenna has welcomed Father Mathew Humtsoe to our Diocese, from the Diocese of Kohima, Nagaland.
“Father Mathew will work among us for the next two years and I know that the people and his brother priests will make him welcome and be blessed with his ministry” the Bishop said. Father Mathew arrived with Father Manoj Manuel, also of Kohima, who will be ministering in Diocese of Wilcannia-Forbes. Kimbalee Clews
Fr Manoj, Bishop Michael and Fr Mathew
Page 12 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
World Meeting of Families 2018
ublin, Ireland, has been chosen by Pope Francis to host the next World Meeting of Families (WMOF) from 21st-26th August 2018, guided by the theme “The Gospel of the Family: Joy for the World”. Held every three years, this major international event brings families together from across the world to celebrate, pray and reflect upon the central importance of marriage and the family as the cornerstone of our lives, society and the Church. The Clayton Family from the Blayney and Cathedral Parishes will be representing the Diocese of Bathurst. Deacon Josh and wife Anna, with their children Lucy, Patrick, Marie and Jack, will attend this important celebration of faith, focusing on the key role of the family, being the domestic church, in our parishes.
Patrick, Josh, Anna, Jack, Maria and Lucy Clayton Anna Clayton said, “We see the opportunity to attend the WMOF as a great chance to be energised and focus on the importance families have in the renewal of our communities. When families are going well, so will our Church!”
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C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 13
DPC gathering in Portland with Plenary Council 2020 Facilitator
n Saturday 26th May, members of the Diocesan Pastoral Council Steering Committee met in Portland for their quarterly meeting. Thank you to the St Joseph’s School community for the wonderful hospitality showed to us on the day. Plenary Council 2020 Facilitator, Ms Lana Turvey-Collins, addressed the meeting giving an overview of the Plenary Council process and answered questions from the meeting. The process aims to reinvigorate the idea that our faith calls us to take on the needs of others and move forward and to create a change of heart amongst people. It provides opportunities to create a space for dialogue; questions for the Plenary and an invitation to people to share their own stories. Lana
Plenary Council hears about local matter and concerns, and your Diocese is well placed with the six working groups where discernment and dialogue can take place”, Lana said. Each of our working groups will set aside time for its own engagement with the process as part of our Assembly preparation. More information about the Plenary Council 2020 can be found on pages two and three of this issue.
stressed that engagement through Diocesan gatherings is critical.
The convenors of each working group updated the Committee on its current works in progress, and details of some of the initiatives are detailed below and on page 15.
“It is important that the national
Sr Alice Sullivan rsj
Ms Lana Tuvey-Collins
Baptismal resources shared
n 2nd June, St Brigid’s Parish Dubbo hosted a gathering of people from around our Diocese, at the invitation of the Diocesan Pastoral Council’s Hearing and Proclaiming the Word of God Working Group, as a time to share Baptismal resources. Representatives from the parishes of Bathurst, Orange, Mudgee, Gilgandra, Coonamble and Dubbo attended. The focus was on how we can help parents come to know and love the story of Jesus and how they can share this with their children. Further discussions during the day encompassed the challenges faced in bridging the gap between Baptism and formal schooling, encouraging faith development and strengthening a sense of family and belonging in the faith we share. Participants on the day went home enlightened and armed with new ideas for the further development of their parish programs, both pre and post baptism. I would like to thank the Working Group, especially Anne Mclean, Sr Alice Sullivan, Pip Brown and Fr
Representatives from across the Diocese share their ideas and resources Greg Kennedy, for developing this new Diocesan initiative. We look forward to a continued strengthening of this sharing and supporting each other to better prepare parents for the
great privilege of handing on this precious gift of faith to their children.
Page 14 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
Leisa Galea St Brigid’s Parish, Dubbo
Hearing and Proclaiming the Word of God - Word and Faith Groups St Columba’s School, Yeoval
he Diocesan Pastoral Council’s Hearing and Proclaiming the Word of God Working Group has been actively promoting Word and Faith Groups across the Diocese. Here at St Columba’s, the staff and students gather together each Tuesday morning to reflect on the readings for the following Sunday. The format is simple; together as group, we recall that Jesus is already present as we gather in God’s name and we sing a short chant. The Gospel is then read, followed by a brief time of silent reflection. The staff and students are then invited to repeat a phrase or a word in the reading that spoke to them. Everyone is then asked to observe a minute of silent prayer, as they open their hearts to God and pray for one another, before concluding with the Lord’s Prayer. It has been a wonderful way to bring the School together in Jesus’ name and reflect on his words and deeds and how they can come alive in the daily actions of all. Glen Brown Principal/REC
St Mary’s Parish, Mudgee The Parish Council of St Mary’s Parish, Mudgee begin our monthly meetings with Word and Faith. It’s a lovely way to begin - simple and easy to do. We also use Word and Faith at the beginning of our
Liturgy Group meetings. It sees everyone in the meetings stop and reflect for a little while, giving each of us the opportunity to listen to God’s word and reset our hearts and minds, in preparation for the practicalities of the work that follows. Anne McLean
St John’s Parish, Baradine In September 2017, parishioners at St John’s Parish, Baradine started two Word and Faith groups under the care, leadership and support of Sr Madeline Breen rsj, from Coonabarabran. The groups meet each Thursday at 8am and 10am, with around ten of us meeting each week. During Lent, our 10am group studied the Lenten Program from the Archdiocese of Brisbane. We all love taking part in the groups and look forward to breaking open God’s Word each week. We would highly
recommend starting a group in your parish or group. The following are the reflections of some of our group’s participants: “Being part of the Word and Faith Group has fulfilled a New Year’s resolution of mine: “to spend more time with Jesus”, that I would make every year and never sustain. Being part of a group that meets each week has made me commit. With insight from each other, we open the scriptures and make the message meaningful in the context of our daily lives”. “Meeting together, praying together, hearing a word or phrase that speaks to me, opening up those words, the sharing with others, hearing their input - has made me more attentive to the Word in the Mass”. “I enjoy the group and I find I am getting a lot more out of the Gospel at our weekend Mass because we have discussed and opened up the Word in our Group”. Nea Worrell
Angela and Ray celebrate 55 years of marriage
evoted Rylstone parishioners, Angela and Ray Krusvar, celebrated their 55th Wedding anniversary on 27th April, 2018. Coincidently, it was also the day that Bishop Michael McKenna celebrated Mass at St Malachy’s Church, Rylstone, assisted by Deacon Charles Applin. Bishop Michael gave a blessing to Angela and Ray as they celebrated 55 years of marriage. “It was a very special day for Kandos/ Rylstone parishioners, but it was a miracle in itself for my husband and me to receive a special blessing from our own Bishop Michael”, said Angela. Kimbalee Clews
The happy couple with Bishop Michael and Deacon Charles Applin
C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 15
Chancery stalwart retires
n 28th April 2018, Helen Howard retired after 47 years of dedicated service to the Diocese of Bathurst. Bishop Michael McKenna, priests, friends and colleagues came together on 1st June at Carrington House Function Centre in Bathurst to celebrate Helen’s wonderful achievement and wish her well in her retirement. Helen’s husband Darryl was also there to celebrate with her, as was her daughter and son-in-law Amanda and Michael Buck and their sons Harrison and Angus, who travelled from Sydney to be with her on this special occasion.
Setting a new record as the longest standing employee in the Diocese, Helen has witnessed many ‘firsts’ in her time. Her time at the Chancery office began in 1971 at just 15, nearly 16, years of age. After attending the Diocesan Catholic Girls High School (now MacKillop College), Helen Lloyd left school in 1970. Soon after, she was told that a lady was leaving the Chancery Office, because Bishop Thomas did not believe married women should work. She had a chat with the gentleman in charge, Mr John Knight, and as a result, started at the Chancery office on 27th January 1971, as a receptionist.
transforming it into what it is today. You have set the example for many more employees to share in your devotion and commitment, and for them to follow in your footsteps”. Bishop Michael also thanked Helen for her dedication, loyalty and devotion to the Diocese in the many roles she held over the years and presented her with gifts, recognising her wonderful achievements. We will miss Helen but wish her good health, happiness and God’s abundant blessings as she begins this next chapter in her life. Kimbalee Clews and Fiona Lewis
Over the years she held various roles and worked with three bishops, numerous priests, religious, parish and school secretaries, and lay people. There are very few people who have any association with the Catholic Development Fund (CDF) or Chancery who do not know Helen, or ‘Howie’ as she is affectionately known. Helen married Darryl Howard in 1975 and was the first married woman Bishop Thomas allowed to continue to work in the Chancery. After having their first child, Amanda, in 1977 and then son Ben in 1979, she worked from home on and off until 1982, when she returned to work at the office for Sr Joan Williams, in the Marriage Tribunal.
Tony Eviston and Helen
After the Tribunal, Helen worked with Cas Zawadski in the Missions Office. While in that position, Hugh O’Reilly offered her a job with the CDF, two days a week. This very quickly led to four days, which continued until early this year. Helen says she remembers telling Hugh “I know nothing about computers!”, but he guaranteed she would “pick it up”. He was right - and she worked with the CDF for 26 years. Helen’s son Ben and his family - Jane, Charley and Frankie were unfortunately unable to attend the evening, but sent a wonderful tribute on behalf of the whole family, which was read by Chancellor, Tony Eviston. “From early on in your career, it was evident that you had a very strong work ethic, an eye for detail and an appetite for perfection. During this time, your friendships developed and they extended to more than just that of professional teams. These friendships are witnessed here tonight, with the gathering of your closest friends and family to recognise and celebrate this remarkable achievement”. Ben’s sentiments were shared by the 70 guests when he said, “The commitment that you have shown during your employment is difficult to explain to outsiders, however we fully understand how incredibly hard you have been working over this time. We are all so proud of you for your significant contribution to developing the CDF and
Helen and Family with Bishop Michael
Darryl and Helen with the Bishop
Page 16 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
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Fr Mark McGuigan with Helen
Tony Eviston, Pauline Pollard, Cathy O’Brien and Patti Kiddle
Helen with Fr Garry McKeown
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Year of Youth Forum 2018
he Year of Youth Forum was held in Bathurst on 4th April. The purpose of this gathering was to have an open discussion between the young people in our schools and parishes with the leaders in our local church community. Bishop Michael McKenna, priests, deacons and youth ministers from across the Diocese were there, as well as student representatives from our secondary schools. The day began with some games before moving on to a Q and A session. The people on the panel included Chloe Kelly, Manager, Catholic Schools Youth Ministry Australia (CSYMA); Bishop Michael McKenna; Tom Fiander, Youth Minister; and Fr Paul Devitt, Vicar General. The discussion was facilitated by Huw Warmenhoven from CSYMA. Some of the questions that were put to the panel included “What do you think is the biggest barrier that is stopping young Catholics from being active in their faith?” and “How can women be leaders in the Church?”, and from this came some great discussion. There was also a chance for the young people to respond and have their voice heard. Some of the points discussed during this session were “What are your passions?” and “What is your hope for the Church in the future?”.
The response from the young people present was very positive. Many commented that they thought it was a good initiative and it was a really great opportunity for their voices to be heard. Emily Bennett Youth Minister, La Salle Academy
Cathedral Parish Cup supports restoration of the Cathedral
hroughout the process of the Cathedral’s restoration, The Bathurst Harness Racing Club has been a strong supporter of the Appeal, with a racing evening once again being held on 6th April this year. It was a wonderful night with representatives from local Catholic schools and agencies in attendance to present winners of the various races with trophies and sashes. The main event was the Cathedral Parish Cup, which saw local harness racing royalty, the Turnbull family, go head to head with each other. Nathan Turnbull snatched victory with his horse ‘Parramatta’, by just a half head over ‘Star Writer’, who was driven by his sister Amanda Turnbull. Bishop Michael McKenna said “Once again the evening was thoroughly enjoyable and a great success. I am grateful for the work of the Harness Racing Club to support the ongoing restoration of the Cathedral of St Michael and St John”. Kimbalee Clews
Bishop Michael presenting the Cathedral Parish Cup to Nathan Turnbull and his family, with The Hon. Paul Toole MP, Peter Nugent and Graham Hanger, Mayor of Bathurst
Page 18 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
Millie earns a place in state hockey squad
ATHURST: MacKillop College student, Millie Fulton has achieved the first step towards an appearance at next year’s Under 15s Girls Field National Championships after being named in the 2019 NSW hockey squad. Millie, who is 14 and in Year 8, impressed at Bathurst’s recent Under 15s State Championship campaign when the striker was named among the 45-strong squad. The St Pat’s club player is one of six Central West representatives and is the sole Bathurst selection. Millie will work hard over the rest of the year to try and book her place in the final team of 32, which will then be split into tier one and two sides. This isn’t new territory for Millie. The Bathurst junior gained automatic entry to the under 15s squad last year, courtesy of being a top age player in the previous under 13s state team. However, there was no guarantee of a place this time around and that made the latest selection extra satisfying. “It feels really good,” Fulton said. “I played with most of the girls in my first year of under 13s, but there’s a lot of new people who have got into the squad this year”. A regular place in the Saints’ first grade team - just one step below Premier League Hockey - has helped
Millie is ready to take her place in the NSW squad Photo: Chris Seabrook Fulton play in a more physical and faster-paced environment. Millie’s Dad, Brad, said it’s great to see her commitment to game paying off. “Obviously not everyone makes it every year to this squad, so still being in that loop is a great achievement”, he said. “District is now over but with the amount of club hockey we’ve got, there’s going to be no shortage of game time. We’re a year-long sport now, so working on skills and fitness is something that continues all the time”. “Under 15s is where things start to get a bit brutal. That’s where they
really start to say ‘We’re here to win an Australian Championship’, and that means they’ll pick a firsts and a seconds as opposed to picking two even teams”, said Brad. The final cuts won’t be made until two trial weekends and the City versus Country clash this summer. The long wait until final selections doesn’t mean there’s time to take it easy. “If you’re not doing the work required then someone else is”, Millie said. Courtesy of Alexander Grant Western Advocate
The Catholic Observer is published by the Catholic Diocese of Bathurst (Diocesan Publications) PO Box 246, Bathurst, NSW, 2795 ph: (02) 6334 6400 fax: (02) 6331 9453 email: email@example.com Editor ~ Fiona Lewis Communications Co-ordinator ~ Kimbalee Clews Designer ~ Jacqui Keady
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C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 19
Through Growth to Achievement and Transformation
embraced with great passion, skill and energy.
hrough Growth to Achievement is the title of the report of the review to achieve educational excellence in Australian schools. The report was released in March and is commonly referred to as the Gonski 2.0 Report.
4. Empowering and supporting school leaders. This recommendation calls for principals to prioritise their leadership of learning as a key dimension of their daily work. Just one example of how our principals have embraced this focus, is the choice of our study text in 2017, Leading Learning and Teaching by Professor Stephen Dinham, who also provided the keynote address at our Diocesan Showcase last July.
Our Catholic schools strive also to be transformative, as reflected in Pope Francis’ words in 2013 to students of Jesuit schools in Italy: School can and must be a catalyst, it must be a place of encounter and convergence of the entire education community, with their sole objective of helping to develop mature people who are simple, competent and honest, who know how to love with fidelity, who can live life as a response to God’s call, and their future profession as a service to society. The release of the Gonski 2.0 Report has provided the opportunity to reflect on the points of resonance between the priorities and recommendations outlined in the report and the strategies being implemented every day in our schools, as they support and challenge students on their learning journey. There are indeed many points of resonance, signalling that our schools’ journey of improvement is certainly in line with current educational thinking and research. This resonance can be readily seen in the five recommendation areas of the Report: 1. Laying the foundations for learning. The detail in this recommendation aligns with our schools’ current focus on ensuring that our kindergarten students experience a seamless transition into school, particularly through our Ready for Learning program. The call to engage parents and carers as partners in their child’s learning is reflected in our regular Parent Engagement Newsletter, which provides our school
communities with a range of resources to assist them in this vital dimension of the life of a school community. 2. Equipping every student to grow and succeed in a changing world. Prioritising the acquisition of foundation skills in literacy and numeracy in the early years, is the first step our schools undertake in realising our strategic intent: high levels of learning for all. Our Diocesan Model of Christ Centred Learning gives prominence to the suite of capabilities our students need in order to thrive in a changing world. Indeed, the focus of the two day principal conference in March was Educating for a Changing World. 3. Creating, supporting and valuing a profession of expert educators. This recommendation calls for the ongoing creation of conditions and culture to enable and encourage more professional collaboration, observation, feedback and mentoring amongst teachers. This reflects precisely the focus of our school improvement journey in recent years. These aspects of teachers’ professional practice are at the heart of the Professional Learning Communities’ model which all of our teachers have
5. Raising and achieving aspirations through innovation and continuous improvement. A culture of internal self-review outlined in this recommendation is very much embedded in our school review process. In regard to innovation, this culture is being further supported in our schools by the introduction in 2018 of our Innovation Fund grants, to support the development of a culture of self-transforming schools who strive for the sort of transformation the Gonski 2.0 Report is calling for and that our schools have been embracing for many years now - transformation which is defined as significant, systematic and sustained change that secures success for all students in all settings. Catholic Education Diocese of Bathurst is both affirmed and challenged by the substance of the Gonski Report 2.0. I invite members of our wider Diocesan community to discover the great things happening in our dynamic faith-filled school communities every day. Our principals and staff would love to engage in conversation with you about their work and their ongoing learning about how best to provide high quality Catholic education for all. If you are not already connected to our school communities, why not visit one soon?
Page 20 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
Mrs Jenny Allen Executive Director of Schools
Nursery Rhyme Time
n historic feature of the Dubbo Eisteddfod has always been the Kindergarten Nursery Rhymes. Students in Kindergarten across the region get their 30 seconds of fame as they ‘fly solo’ for the first time in their school careers on centre stage at the Dubbo Regional Theatre. Parents get to hold their breath for 30 seconds while they pray that something actually happens on that stage for their ‘little stars’. Videos, and now DVDs, of this timeless event have been handed down from generation to generation, and still that ‘cute factor’ remains the constant. Janine Kearney
Isabelle (I’m a Little Teapot), Hugo (The Dingle Dangle Scarecrow) and Harriet (Twinkle, Twinkle) couldn’t wait to hit that stage
o matter what time of the school day is is at St John’s Primary School, Baradine, you will find evidence of the beautiful busyness that precludes ‘lavish’ learning. Whether it’s the incredibly lush school grounds that entice all forms of activities by students during break times, the amazingly creative art room that resembles ‘a ’little Louvre’, or the classrooms where staff ensure their students have every opportunity to be successful, motivated learners, you will find busyness wherever you look. The latest ‘new look’ infants room teams with the learning theme and is proving to be a huge hit for its inhabitants. Janine Kearney
Mrs Draper and her busy little Vegemites
St Lawrence’s Primary School Coonabarabran
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C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 21
Why is it a “Spelling Bee”?
id you know the word bee has two meanings? One is an insect and the other is a gathering of people for a specific purpose - quilting bee, barn raising bee, apple bee, working bee, and of course our annual Diocesan Spelling Bee. The original term Spelling Bee was credited to Sir John Lubbock, a friend of Charles Darwin, who was a great advocate for reforming spelling. Sir John, like the spelling bee of today, instigated opportunities for students to gather and show off their spelling prowess to a gathered group. The 2018 Diocesan Spelling Bee was a brilliant success, as students from across the Diocese gathered in Wellington to challenge themselves and each other and show off the talents they have. Words tested students and adults alike, with many an adult both thrilled and amazed by the knowledge of their child and the other children. The opportunity to attend the Diocesan Spelling Bee is open to all students from Years 3 to 10 and lifts their skills and knowledge of words, comprehension
Vince Connor with Lauren Evans and Malindi Samarakoon
Jenny Allen with Olivia Inder
and vocabulary well beyond their age. Congratulations to the nearly 200 champion spellers from our schools who competed, and to those who were victorious in the Championship Round. The winners of each stage were: Stage 2: 1st: Luka Garland from St Matthews Catholic School, Mudgee; 2nd: Jackson Davis from St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, Orange Stage 3: 1st: Olivia Inder from St Michael’s Catholic Primary School, Dunedoo; 2nd: Jim McCarney from St Matthews Catholic School, Mudgee Stage 4: 1st: Lauren Evans from MacKillop College, Bathurst; 2nd: Malindi Samarakoon from St Johns College, Dubbo Stage 5: 1st: Sebastian Newton from St Johns College, Dubbo; 2nd: James Joseph from St Johns College, Dubbo Cathy Gaudry
St Matthews Catholic School
Providing a comprehensive and quality education in the Catholic tradition for young people from Kindergarten to Year 12.
4 Lewis St Mudgee Phone: 6372 1742 New website: www.stmattsmudgee.catholic.edu.au Page 22 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
27 - 28 September 2017 Ridgecrest Convention Centre Lake Burrendong $100 early bird registration. $110 after 1 September. RISE Youth FEStIval is for everyone in Years 6-9. For those in Year 10 and above, you can also participate as part of the RISE Team. Contact Deacon Josh for more details email@example.com
RISE Youth FEStIval is a celebration that gives young people the opportunity to discover the extraordinary gift of faith, lived to the full. The festival also offers contact with peers who are connected with their faith journey on a personal level, establishing a network of young people across the Diocese and beyond. Registrations are now open.
Visit www.bathurst.catholic.org.au to register now and for more information
C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t â€˘ June 2018 â€˘ Page 23
Christian meditation in our schools
ecently, Catholic Education Diocese of Bathurst hosted the Director and Assistant Director of Religious Education for the Diocese of Townsville, Mr John Crowley and Mr Ernie Christie. John and Ernie spent time with 33 teachers from our Diocese, who learnt about the ancient prayer form of Christian meditation.
With the aim of teaching students to find God in stillness, silence and
simplicity, eight schools from the Diocese will trial Christian meditation in 2018. These include La Salle Academy, Lithgow; MacKillop College, Bathurst; St Joseph’s Primary School, Portland; St John’s Primary School, Dubbo; St Mary’s Primary School, Dubbo; St Laurence’s Primary School, Coonabarabran and St Josephs’ Primary School, Manildra.
designed meditation facilitate the process.
Christian meditation in the Diocese of Townsville is embedded in all schools, from Kindergarten to Year 12. With a similar aim, we would hope all schools in our Diocese follow Townsville’s lead in 2019.
Each school has received a specially
Dr Angelo Belmonte
Our futurefocused leaders
s part of its Education for a Changing World project, the Department of Education’s first discussion paper on the topic, ‘Education; Future Frontiers’ touched on some of the developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Automation and the implications for schools and education systems in preparing today’s young people to flourish in a world of AI, which is predicted to profoundly affect how we live and work in the next two decades. ‘Schools of the future’ was a focus of the recent primary principals’ cluster meeting. Principals were challenged to don their creative, contemporary hats and build their metaphor for a Catholic school. Some of the amazingly insightful and creative responses to this challenge show that there is nothing ‘artificial’ about the intelligence of our school leaders, and reassures us that our schools are flourishing in future-focused hands. Janine Kearney
Mr O’Dea, Principal of Sacred Heart, Coolah with his inspirational idea
Page 24 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
An investment in student life
RANGE: In an Australian first, James Sheahan Catholic High School has installed a state of the art, high performance sports tarmac; the most advanced acrylic sports surfacing system on the market and the only one in any school in the country. The $750,000 Laykold Masters GEL surface covers 6,000 square metres and provides a performance based, force reduction and high energy return, to reduce fatigue and improve recovery times. Peter Meers, School Principal, believes the new courts are an investment in infrastructure, and equally, an investment in student life and well-being. “As a Catholic school we live our faith, and as teachers, we strive to deliver a first class education to our students. At Sheahan, we also understand that physical well-being,
The new sports surface at James Sheahan from above teamwork and pursuing ‘personal best’ are critical to preparing our students to face life’s challenges and meet life’s opportunities with courage and grace”, said Mr Meers.
“This wonderful facility enriches the Sheahan school journey. We feel blessed to be able to provide it and the kids love it!”. Kirsten Felstead
Holy Thursday at La Salle Academy
ITHGOW: The Year 10 Catholic Schools Youth Ministry Australia (CSYMA) Youth Ministry team from La Salle Academy led our school in a wonderful, faithfilled liturgy on Holy Thursday, as part of Easter preparations. Year 9 drama students were also involved in parts of the liturgy, which was outstanding in communicating the importance of the Easter message. These students are to be commended on their reverence and maturity. Our new Youth Minister, Emily Bennett, along with our REC, Mrs Joanne Brown, did an exceptional job putting it altogether! Margaret Doulman
C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 25
The Green Emus and their silver coin trail
BIG at heart!
UGOWRA: St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School might be small, but when it comes to thinking of others and raising some money to assist the needy, they are big at heart.
On 2nd March, 30 children bought a handful of silver coins in to make a coin trail. Each house group banded together joining many pieces of silver to see who could make the longest trail. The ‘Green Emus’ won by a mile with a whopping 19 metres. It was a great competition joining all those little 5s, 10s, 20s and 50c pieces in a long line. The three houses combined together to make $224.00, which was donated to Project Compassion.
St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School EUGOWRA
Located in the rural village of Eugowra, is the tradition of Catholic teachings begun by the Sisters of St Joseph in 1882. Today our small school is still thriving and growing with our rapidly changing world, based on the teachings of the Gospel spirit of freedom and love. St Joseph’s encourages the development of each child, spiritually, cognitively, emotionally and physically.
Crazy socks on display
On Wednesday 21st March, the students also contributed to another worthy cause - World Down Syndrome Day. The SRC raised $59 to donate to this cause by asking everyone to wear odd socks! The aim was to raise awareness of those families who are affected by Down Syndrome. The donation has been sent to the Down Syndrome Association of NSW. Well done to the students and what a great idea to put your loose change to good use! Sarah de Lange
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Page 26 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
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Close shave for a good cause
ATHURST: Cathedral School teacher Ashley Boylan was going to have his beard shaved one way or another on Monday 9th April. He had promised to say goodbye to his whiskers of three years if the students of his class 6B raised more than $1,000 for Project Compassion. In the end, they exceeded that target. But, as he sat in front of the School Assembly and watched the clippers fire up, he admitted his wife probably would have helped top up the total if it fell short. Mr Boylan said “generosity and compassion” had come to the fore as his students challenged each other to raise as much as they could and, occasionally, challenged their teacher. During the fundraising, students paid for the privilege of having Mr Boylan, well-known as a Collingwood supporter, wear Sydney Swans gear, and even sing the Swans’ song in front of the whole grade. Cathedral School as a whole raised almost $5,000 for Project Compassion. Courtesy of the Western Advocate
Crazy Hair Day for Project Compassion
O R T L A N D : Congratulations to our Joey’s students who have held a very successful Crazy Hair Day fundraiser, raising $150 for Caritas Australia’s Annual Lenten fundraiser, Project Compassion. Project Compassion brings thousands of Australians together in solidarity with the world’s poor to help end poverty, promote justice and uphold dignity. Thanks to all the students and the wonderful parents who got up early to get creative for a wonderful cause. Nikki Field
Some crazy hair styles on display by teachers and students at St Joseph’s, Portland C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 27
Bathurst students ‘live to air’ in UK
ATHURST: In late April, BBC radio commentator and presenter, Nicky Price, from Gloucestershire, United Kingdom, broadcast her three hour morning program live from the Australian Fossil and Mineral Museum, Bathurst to their London breakfast audience. Nicky interviewed a number of local residents and students about life in Bathurst in order to offer an insight into our educational, cultural and sporting facilities. One of those interviewed was MacKillop College Year 11 student Megan Walton. She spoke about school life at MacKillop College, studying for the Higher School Certificate, and overseas school excursions such as the Modern History European Tour and the recent Japanese Tour for 2018.
in October 2017 in the presence of His Excellency, The High Commissioner of Australia, Alexander Downer. The aim of the friendship is to promote awareness, communication and opportunities between the people and organisations of the two regional cities. The students were very honoured to be asked to speak and perform at this important event and would like to thank the staff of Bathurst Regional Council and the Australian Fossil and Mineral Museum for their hospitality and support in promoting the Bathurst region. Nicky Price interviewing Megan Walton and Jack Lynch
A combined MacKillop and St Stanislaus’ choir were the standout performance of the evening. MacKillop students Gabby Whitwell, Alex Parnell, Niamh Sinclair, Louise Hill and Monique Grima joined Stannies students Ben Thompson, George Sargent, Daniel van Klooster, Patrick Kelly, Heath Delahunty and Jackson Hughes to perform the Queen hit, We Are The Champions, from the recently performed combined Colleges’ musical, We Will Rock You. The opportunity for our students to speak about the College and perform to an international audience arose as a result of the Cirencester and the City of Bathurst Friendship Initiative, launched
The combined MacKillop and Stannies choir
St Joseph’s welcomes Bishop McKenna
ANILDRA: The students and staff of St Joseph’s Primary School were delighted to welcome Bishop Michael McKenna to our school on 16th May. Bishop Michael, accompanied by Parish Priest, Fr Greg Bellamy, looked at our recent renovations and spoke to the Year 6 students in preparation for receiving the Sacrament of Confirmation. Bishop Michael and Fr Greg then shared morning tea with the staff and interacted with students in the playground. We could not let this photo opportunity go past. Thank you Bishop Michael and Fr Greg, for coming to our school. Jacky Parmeter Principal
Bishop Michael and Fr Greg with St Joseph’s, Manildra
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Stannies visit Fiji
ATHURST: Over the April school holidays, a group of senior students, accompanied by three teachers (and a physiotherapist), flew to Fiji for a 10 day rugby and community outreach tour. The group travelled the East Coast of Fiji to participate in rugby matches against schools in Nasouri, Natovi and Lodoni. These physically grueling games played in the Fijian heat certainly prepared our players for their winter rugby season. The challenges of traversing a river on foot to reach the rugby oval on which they competed not only with their opponents, but also with local cane toads, was certainly a unique experience!
The Stannies representatives bound for Fiji
A high point of the tour was the Vincentian immersion experience at St Vincent’s, Natovi. Stannies has a strong relationship with St Vincent’s. Many Vincentians who have been part of Stannies’ history, lived and worked at St Vincent’s. Over a number of days, our representatives from the College lived on-site with staff and students, experiencing a very different culture. They supported the repairs and maintenance program that has been ongoing since the extreme damage caused by Cyclone Winston. Fundraising initiatives have been ongoing since the College’s previous visit in 2016, resulting in the purchase of tools to the value of $1,000. These were taken by each of the students and donated to St Vincent’s. Along with hammers and saws, one students packed a very large hand drill that took up a large part of his checked in luggage! This was the second Stannies trip to St Vincent’s in three years, rekindling relationships and forming
Paul Mongta and Thomas Parker new friendships. Feedback from the students and their parents has highlighted the positive impact of this experience, including the insights
Students helping to rebuild after Cyclone Winston into a different way of life and how people with so little can be so happy, welcoming and generous. Dr Anne Wenham
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C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 29
Catholic Schools Week at All Hallows
ULGONG: As part of Catholic Schools Week, All Hallows Catholic Primary enjoyed an ‘Enrichment Day’ which offered the students a variety of activities ranging from cooking, drama and geocaching. Another activity Aboriginal art.
All Hallows was fortunate enough to have Aboriginal Education Worker, Pixi Vincent-Cross, guide us on the day in creating beautiful Aboriginal styled artworks. The results are now on display on the exterior wall of one of our School buildings. A big thank you to Pixi for her creative guidance and St Mary’s, Dubbo for allowing Pixi to share in our ‘Enrichment Day’. Sarah Buckle
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CCRESS meet in Canberra
acinta Thatcher joined the Special Religious Education (SRE) Co-ordinating team in August last year and has recently been appointed the Northern Region SRE Co-ordinator for the Diocese of Bathurst. She also assists me in my role as Southern Region SRE Coordinator. Jacinta completed a degree in Theology in 2017. She is a member of the St John the Baptist Parish, Gulgong and teaches three days a week at All Hallows School, Gulgong. Jacinta is also a member of the Diocesan Pastoral Council’s Participation of Young Catholics Working Group. Available to assist Catechists on Mondays and Fridays each week, much of her time so far has been dedicated to updating SRE Teachers with their Child Protection training by facilitating the CCRESS online training. Jacinta has been updating records to ensure we have accurate information about all the training completed by our Catechists. We are indeed fortunate to have her join our team.
ony Eviston, Jacinta Thatcher and Vicki Mair recently attended the Catholic Conference of Religious Educators in State Schools at St Christopher’s Pastoral Centre, Manuka, ACT. This conference is an opportunity to meet with other Confraternity of Christian Doctrine Directors and SRE Coordinators from dioceses across NSW and the ACT. The conference included a Professional Development Day, followed by Mass in St Christopher’s Cathedral, celebrated by the Apostolic Nuncio, His Excellency, Archbishop Yllana. The next CCRESS Conference will be in held Bathurst this November.
Jacinta, Vicki and Deacon Matt Ransom
ach year, Perthville Public School presents an Easter Assembly which is prepared by the SRE Teachers. Each class presents an item connected with the Easter theme. This year, Dean of the Cathedral, Fr Paul Devitt VG, was the guest speaker. The children’s families, friends and teachers attended and very much enjoyed the presentations.
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C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 31
Bishop Michael visits Confirmandi
lready this year, children from Molong, Oberon, Lithgow, Bathurst, Dubbo and Cowra parishes have received the Sacrament of Confirmation. It’s a busy time for Bishop Michael McKenna, as he travels across the Diocese to Confirm the hundreds of children who work diligently preparing to receive the Holy Spirit. Where possible, Bishop Michael spends time with students in the lead up to their Confirmation, visiting schools across the Diocese.
On 23rd May, Bishop Michael and Dean of the Cathedral, Fr Paul Devitt VG, visited with Year 6 students from St Philomena›s Primary School, Bathurst. Together, they prayed the Angelus and spent time discussing the Baptismal promises their parents made on their behalf. They read and reflected on the Sunday Gospel, which was proclaimed on the weekend they were Confirmed. There was a good discussion about many things, including when and where the Bishop was Confirmed and what saint’s name he had chosen, which was St Augustine. The students were also interested in Bishop Michael’s role as the head of the Diocese, what it meant he can and can’t do and how he decided to be a priest. Bishop Michael was keen to learn about where the children had been Baptised, the saints chosen for Confirmation names, as well as ensuring they understood the questions they will be asked when they receive the Sacrament; a significant milestone in their faith journey. It’s always enlightening to listen to the children, who bring such enthusiasm and a different perspective to age-old questions. Many young people in the church community will receive the Sacrament of Confirmation over the coming months and we ask for your prayers as they receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit, to strengthen their resolve to lead a Christian life. Kimbalee Clews Page 32 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
The MFP welcomes Dr Clare Johnson
ecently, the Diocesan Ministry Formation Program (MFP) held its monthly formation gathering in Dubbo. At this session, attendees were able to delve deeper into the liturgy, and the importance of celebrating liturgies effectively and correctly. Participants also reflected on assisting our parish communities to achieve full, conscious and active participation. The session was led by Professor Clare Johnson, Director of the Australian Catholic University’s Centre for Liturgy and Professor of Liturgical Studies and Sacramental Theology at its Strathfield Campus. As well as the ACU, she has taught liturgical studies, sacramental theology, preaching, liturgical music and introductory theology at the University of Notre Dame and Michigan State Universities in America and the University of Notre Dame in Fremantle. Dr Johnson is a member of the National Liturgical Council, advising the Australian Catholic Bishops Commission for Liturgy and holds a mandatum to teach Catholic theological disciplines. Our MFP participants were walked through the Mass and encouraged to look intensely at their own understanding of liturgy, as well as that of their parish community. The assignment set called each person
Bishop of Sale, Patrick O’Regan with Dr Clare Johnson to reflect deeper on the liturgy in their own parishes and to look at guidelines set in the General Instruction of the Roman Missal and the Lectionary. Dr Johnson will return to the Diocese later in the year to lead a further session, looking at the importance of the Sacraments in regard to our relationship with God and the Church. The MFP aims to inspire and equip men and women to work in different forms
of ministry across the Diocese. This formation will give a basis for ongoing development to support the mission of the local church. It will enhance existing ministries for parish liturgies, hospital, aged care and prison visitation and catechesis of adults and children; and hopefully enable the Diocese to expand services in areas such as funeral and bereavement teams and university ministry. Tony Eviston
Please give generously to the Cathedral Restoration Appeal Donations can be made: In Person ~ Catholic Chancery Office Bathurst, or at your local Parish Office By Phone ~ 1800 451 760 By email ~ email@example.com Online ~ cathedralappealbathurst.org.au where you will find more information. Donations over $2 are tax deductible C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 33
Legion celebrates 75 years
Past and present members and auxiliaries of the Legion of Mary, Diocese of Bathurst
n 1943, a small group of women and men first gathered in the Bishop’s House, which was next door to the Cathedral in the time of Bishop Norton. Since then, under our Lady’s care, a work of prayer and charity has since continued in the Diocese of Bathurst for the past 75 years. The Legion of Mary in the Diocese celebrated its 75th anniversary on 15th April 2018 with Mass in the Cathedral of St Michael and St John, followed by members and auxiliaries, past and present, joining together for lunch and to share many memories and friendship.
To quote Bishop Patrick Dougherty from the 50th anniversary celebrations: “God reward you for yesterday, the (75) years completed. God bless and encourage you today. God grant that, for tomorrow, the beautiful “path of Mary” to Jesus, to the Church, and to the world - which is admirably encapsulated in the Legion of Mary’s work and spirit - may be discovered and followed by many.” Kimbalee Clews Mrs Betty Webster with the cake she made and decorated for the 75th anniversary celebrations
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Centenary of St Lawrence’s Catholic Presbytery
ollowing Mass on Sunday 15th April, more than 120 people gathered at St Lawrence’s Catholic Presbytery, Coonabarabran to celebrate the centenary of the Presbytery and honour the memory of the stonemason who helped build the impressive sandstone building. Officially opened and blessed on 14th April 1918 by Fr Michael D Forrest MSC, the Presbytery was originally constructed to house the parish priest, Fr Thomas Doran. Funded by hundreds of donations from the Coonabarabran community during 1917-1918, the Federation-style sandstone bungalow was designed by Mudgee based architect, Harold Hardwich and built by J Wildman from Gulgong.
Mrs Judy Over, Fr Reynold Jaboneta and Mrs Marion Fitzgerald
During the past 100 years, the Presbytery has housed a number of parish priests and visiting clergy and visitors, with renovations completed in recent years to ensure the longevity of the residence. When Fr Reynold Jaboneta, Parish Priest, moved into the Presbytery in 2015, he was overwhelmed with its beauty. “A visitor once said that our Presbytery was fit for a pope”, Fr Reynold said, “And it really is! One of the outstanding features of this magnificent structure is its sandstone it is stunning in its simplicity”.
Seminarian Diep Nguyen
Stonemason, Luke McNair was employed for the Presbytery project, relocating his young family to Coonabarabran in 1917 for its construction. His granddaughter, Marion Fitzgerald, played a key role in organising the centenary celebrations, together with Mrs Judy Over. On the day of the celebrations, Mrs Fitzgerald was joined by 38 members of the McNair family, aged from seven to 84. Family members travelled from Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales, for the event. Mrs Fitzgerald addressed the crowd, giving a glimpse into the lives of Luke and Mary McNair and how her grandfather carved the stone for the Presbytery from the local quarry, and laid each piece bit by bit, to construct the magnificent building that stands
Granddaugther of stonemason, Luke McNair, Mrs Marion Fitzgerald today. She told of how her grandparents would say that the two years spent in Coonabarabran was one of the most memorable times in their lives journey.
been preserved in a special memento booklet. Collated by Fr Reynold, Mrs Over and Mrs Fitzgerald, the book was launched at the centenary event.
A history of the Presbytery has also
Source: Coonabarabran Times
C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 35
Sr Henrina MC’s Silver Jubilee
aturday 19th May was a big day for the Missionaries of Charity in Orange. It began the day before, with Sisters arriving from all around the country. Suddenly there were 22 of us! In the morning, we were joined by so many of our faithful friends to celebrate
Sr Henrina with Bishop Michael
a Mass of Thanksgiving for our dear Sister Henrina MC, who celebrated 25 years of her vows as a Religious Sister. We don’t want to boast, but people told us that the singing of our MC choir was heavenly. The presence of Bishop Michael and five priests made it so much more special. The support and generosity of the parishioners of
the Parish of St Mary and St Joseph, Orange made us realise how much our presence and work is appreciated here. Thank you to everyone and a big ‘God bless you’ from all of us. The Missionaries of Charity, Orange
The Missionaries of Charity Sisters with Bishop Michael
Good Shepherd Sunday Appeal… thank you
ood Shepherd Sunday was celebrated on 22nd April this year. It’s an opportunity to thank God for our priests, who lead the mission of our local church in the parishes. Their ministry is unique and indispensable. On Good Shepherd Sunday, we look to those who will serve our Diocese as priests in the future: our eight seminarians. Some are nearing the end of the long journey of formation and discernment, others are just beginning. We must never give up on our earnest prayer that more young men will hear and answer God’s call to leave everything and follow him. Every year, we have a special collection to cover the cost of the investment in our seminarians’ training. This year, the annual bill will be more than $275,000. The parish collections provided close to $28,000 and the Diocese is very grateful to those who supported
Fr Joseph Dooley and Seminarian Karl Sinclair the Appeal this year. We ask for ongoing support with your prayers, your participation in the work of our church and your financial contributions.
Page 36 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
The Holy Thursday Challenge
great opportunity for them to catch up with the members of the Cathedral Youth Group. It also sees some friendly rivalry come to the surface when each team’s competitive nature is put to the test.
With many of our Seminarians returning to Bathurst to assist with the Holy Week and Easter ceremonies, it’s a
At the end of the day, touch football was the winner, and much fun was had. Kimbalee Clews
t seems a new tradition has been established, and it’s full of fun and laughter. Over the past few years, on the afternoon of Holy Thursday, the Cathedral Parish Youth Group has hosted our Seminarians in a friendly game of touch football at the Cathedral Primary School, Bathurst.
Can you hear God’s call? You’ll never know unless you begin to open your heart in prayer to the possibilities; and then to speak to someone whose faith and judgment you trust. God does not usually reveal his will in a sudden dramatic way, but in the quiet steps of prayer, sacrament, service, reflection and sharing with other Catholics. Peter began to say to him, “See, we have left everything and followed you.” Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands, for my sake and for the gospel, who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.” (Mk 10:28-30)
For more information about exploring your vocation contact Fr Carl Mackander: firstname.lastname@example.org or Fr Reynold Jaboneta: email@example.com C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t • June 2018 • Page 37
Molong’s Centenary and Confirmation Celebrations
n Saturday 19th May, the Parish of Molong celebrated the Centenary of the opening and blessing of the Sacred Heart and St Lawrence O’Toole Catholic Church. It was a double celebration for the Parish, with nine children also receiving the Sacrament of Confirmation. Bishop Michael McKenna celebrated Mass, with Parish Priest, Fr Greg Bellamy concelebrating, along with Fr James Kane and Fr Paul Maunder. Afterwards, a delicious feast was provided for all to enjoy in the school hall. Fr Greg Bellamy with Bishop Michael and the Confirmandi Following the lovely meal, a cake was cut by the children who had just been Confirmed. Fr Greg welcomed everyone in attendance and introduced Aileen Roberson to give a brief history of the early years of our church. Aileen gave glimpses of the history of the Molong Parish before the church was built and when Masses were celebrated in the homes of John Schnick, John Quinn or in the Court House, Freemasons, Commercial and Club House hotels.
On 20th March 1853, Lots 5, 6, 7 and 8 were set aside in East Molong for the church and school. Because this original site was in a flood prone area, the church and school allotments were shifted to where they stand today.
Colette Middleton and Lea Hutchinson
A huge thank you to the marvellous cooks of our Parish for providing such a wonderful meal and for making the occasion such a memorable one. It was truly a wonderful evening for everyone who attend and a very special time in the history of our parish. Dianne Brennan Parish Council
Caroline and Bob Philpott with Sr Helen Sullivan rsj
Page 38 • June 2018 • C a t h o l i c O B S E RV E R , T h e D i o c e s e o f B a t h u r s t
Reflection on GLeN Conference
n May 2018, I was given the great privilege of attending the Alpha Leadership conference as well as be part of the inaugural GLeN (Global Leaders emerging Network). This conference and formation allowed me to be part of a cohort of young Christian leaders from around the world and from a broad breadth of denominations. To be selected for this gathering, and to have major financial support offered to me from the worldwide Alpha community, was an honour for our Diocese and for me personally. It was also very important to me, as I continue to develop in my leadership skills and my own personal vision of our Church, alive and vibrant across the world. In attending the leadership conference, I was able to experience a Church alive, a Church growing and a Church that believes the message given to it by Christ and the commission entrusted to the disciples; both to reach others, as well as to help build up the Kingdom of God in our communities, where we are and where we are called to be. Through the common worship and expression of faith all through the
Deacon Josh Clayton with Daniel Ang from the Diocese of Broken Bay conference, I experienced a Church united, and one that desires us to be the witness we are all called to be. I was heartened to see Catholic worship next to Baptist, and Evangelical pray beside Anglican. All felt God present and all moved closer in the unity that is desired by Christ and our world Church. We grow in faith and in knowledge of others when we meet them, when we share
with them and when we can know the other’s name and call them friend, not caring of their denomination or their particular version of God. In the GLeN leadership sessions, we were able to work together in small groups to express the challenges felt as young leaders from different denomination, as well as to hear of the great opportunities. We were lucky to experience coaching from John Maxwell, Fr James Mallon, NT Wright and many others who came to offer assistance, wisdom and guidance for young leaders at a critical time of their vocation. This environment enabled a great sense of comradery and hope within the group. Normally very confident leaders being vulnerable and willing to be helped and help others; which is surely a positive and beneficial aspect for the growth of the universal Church. My experience at the Alpha Leadership conference was transformative. I was blessed and am grateful to all and especially to God, who enabled me to be part of this experience. I believe it will help me for many years to come to be the disciple Christ calls me to be. Deacon Josh Clayton
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