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Catholic Identity – 8 August 2019


Solemnity of St. Mary of the Cross Mackillop

Never see a need without doing anything about it – St Mary of the Cross Mackillop

Mary Mackillop, the co-founder of the Josephites, the Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart, was a tireless advocate of education and schools. At just 24 she established a school for children of the poor and underprivileged in Penola, SA, and under her guidance, her Order went on to found schools not only across SA but also in Victoria, NSW and eventually New Zealand.

Mary MacKillop was born in 1842. She was a fine teacher, the founder of schools and a religious order. She devoted her whole life to following Jesus and helping others, especially poor children.

Many people who knew her could tell she was extraordinary. Mother Mary radiated God’s love and energy to everyone she met.

Mary and her companion Fr Julian Tenison Woods dreamed of a new kind of school, open to anyone whether their family was rich or poor. Children from poorer families would be provided with clothing and school supplies for very little cost or for free. They could learn enough reading, writing and maths so they could get out of poverty and have a better life.

When Mary wrote the lessons and timetable for her schools, she made sure there was time for prayers and hymns, which in those days were not written in English, but Latin. But she made sure these weren’t too long so that the children wouldn’t find prayer time too difficult or too boring.

Her pupils must have been grateful for that! Her life wasn’t always easy and she had lots of problems sometimes, but she was happy because she firmly believed in God and that her true home was not here on earth but with God in heaven. She was very cheerful and didn’t want her sisters going around with frowns on their faces.

We pray: Through the example of Saint Mary of the Cross, may we learn to recognise God’s will for us and trust in God’s providence. May her life of service awaken in us a deep respect for the poor and a strong will for justice. May we share in her courage, see with the eyes of Christian love, and learn from her holy deeds. Amen.


Campus Masses

We are grateful to have had Fr John Prest and Fr Isuru lead our Term 3 Campus Masses in the last fortnight. The atmosphere of reverence at each of these Masses was a credit to the staff and the students. Our theme continued to draw from We Grow Together. Music was led by Cantabile, Berwick Music Ministry and Officer Music Ministry, and enabled a prayerful celebration. It makes sense to gather and pray as a Campus. We look forward to our final Masses for the year on the feast day of St Francis Xavier on 3 December. We also look forward to our St Francis Xavier Day gathering on Friday 16 August.


RCIA at St Patricks Parish, Pakenham

RCIA is the process by which adults formally join the Catholic Church.

RCIA can help you if you are:

  • interested in learning more about the Catholic Church;
  • recognize a need for spirituality in your life;
  • baptized into another Christian denomination, but wish to join the Catholic Church;
  • married to a Catholic and attend Mass but want to take the next step to become a Catholic;
  • baptized Catholic, but never received the Sacrament of Confirmation.

The RCIA Team – the candidates and their sponsors meet over several months starting often around August. The gatherings are marked by sharing, listening, learning, teaching, answering questions etc. If you or someone you know of would like to join this journey, contact the parish office/ visit our website. Information night will be on the 21 August 2019 at 7.30pm in the welcome room.

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