News & Events

World Day of the Poor

On Sunday, 19 November,  we shall be commemorating the first World Day of the Poor, announced by Pope Francis at the end of his 2015-16 Jubilee Year of Mercy in the document Misericordia et Misera (#MM 21).

His purpose for creating this day, Pope Francis said in his message for the first World Day of the Poor, 'Let us love, not with words but with deeds' is to give witness: "so that throughout the world Christian communities can become an ever greater sign of Christ’s charity for the least and those most in need".

Across the globe, in the 40+ countries where Sisters of Mercy minister, we have been preparing for this day by praying Catherine McAuley's prayer for the poor that we might continue to respond to need.

We invite you, wherever you are, to join us on 19 November in praying this prayer, for those in your neighbourhood and in our world who are experiencing poverty in one of its many forms: financial, spiritual, emotional, political, material.

You might like to post a prayer, thought or reflection in our prayer space

Mercy Futures - Responding in Mercy to Domestic Violence

The final session in this series will be lead by The Hon. Emma Husar MP, Federal Member for Lindsay. Emma was elected to the Australian Federal Parliament as the Member for Lindsay in 2016 after years of serving the Penrith community.


She has used her parliamentary profile to advocate for improved services and awareness for victims of domestic violence.

Emma maintains a strong interest in education and disability policy, and is a member of the Joint Committee on the NDIS and the House Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs.

Before entering parliament, she was fighting to improve local disability services as a member of Penrith Council Access Committee. She has led community fundraising drives supporting people with serious illnesses; served on local school P&C committees, on the boards of charities, and Chaired the Penrith Homelessness Interagency Committee.

Emma received the Penrith City Council Carer of the Year award in 2010 for her work on behalf of people with disabilities. She has previously worked as a fundraising and events manager for the Australian Paralympic Committee, Telstra Child Flight and Tech Aid Disabled.

When: Wednesday November 22, 2017: 6.30pm - 8pm (Refreshments served from 6.30pm)
Where: Catherine McAuley Rooms, 6 Victoria Road, Parramatta
Parking: There is limited parking in the Convent car park. If you require parking close to the venue let us know and we will reserve a parking spot for you. There is street parking in Ross and Villiers streets.
RSVP: By Friday November 17, 2017. Email or call the Congregation Office on 9683 2555.

We do hope that you will be able to join us. Mercy Futures Team

Australia’s Economy Must Serve Every One of Us

We will open our hearts to the cries of the poor...
Chapter Statement

Sisters of Mercy Parramatta Congregation welcome the call in the latest ACSJC publication for an Australian economy that is based on principles of justice and equity – one that is at the service of all, particularly the three million Australians living in poverty.

‘Australia now has the second-highest net worth per person in the world. But we cannot justify this wealth if, in accumulating it, we have left behind those who are most in need’, says Bishop Vincent Long Van Nguyen, the Chairman of the Australian Catholic Social Justice Council (ACSJC).

Bishop Long writes this in his foreword to the latest publication from the ACSJC, An Economy that Works for All by Joe Zabar, Senior Director, Strategic Operations and Economic Policy at Catholic Social Services Australia.

The paper examines Australia’s economic policies and their effect on the most vulnerable. It expands on themes in the Australian bishops’ 2017–18 Social Justice Statement, Everyone’s Business: Developing an inclusive and sustainable economy.

In particular, An Economy that Works for All discusses the serious effects of growing inequality, described by the International Monetary Fund as ‘the defining challenge of our time’.

Fr Frank Brennan SJ AO, CEO of Catholic Social Services Australia, writes in his introduction to the paper: ‘We need economic policies that are based on, and build on, the aspirations of the marginalised and excluded, who yearn for the opportunity to access the market, sharing the fruits of Australia’s prosperity.’

Author Joe Zabar writes: ‘We are at an important crossroad, one where we must decide whether to continue down a path of growing inequality and exclusion or to harness the good of free enterprise to better serve the society as a whole and in particular those … excluded from participation in our economy and society. ‘How is it that a nation with great riches and natural resources continues to have areas of entrenched and intergenerational disadvantage, and three million Australians, including more than 730,000 children, living in poverty? Why are there 729,200 people unable to find suitable work and a further 1.1 million people looking to increase their hours of work in order to improve the financial wellbeing for themselves and their families?’

The paper summarises the history behind Australia’s current economic settings and the responses of internationally recognised economists and institutions including the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

An Economy that Works for All (Social Justice Series Paper No. 81) is available for $7.50 from the ACSJC.

17 October: International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Mindful that we are called by the world and the church
at this particular time in history
to hear the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor,
we will continue to respond mercifully to both.
(Chapter Statement)

Sisters of Mercy Parramatta Congregation welcome the remarks of Pope Francis on Monday, 16 October at the headquarters of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome to mark World Food Day, where he urged action on climate change and conflicts in order to address migration.

In his address Pope Francis challenged the international community to introduce into the language of international cooperation the category of love, not pity ‘because pity stops at emergency aid, whereas love inspires justice and is essential for realizing a just social order’. It means ‘not continuing to divide the human family into those who have more than they need, and those who lack the essential.

  • Read the Address by Pope Francis here
  • View the FAO World Food Day 2017 video on the theme: Change the future of migration. Invest in food security and rural development

  • Post your prayer, thought or reflection in our prayer space here

Season of Creation Ends: Our Commitment Continues

Today, 4 October, the Feast of St Francis of Assisi, marks the conclusion of the Season of Creation.. Francis is honoured by the Catholic Church as the Patron Saint of animals and ecology and so his feast day is chosen as the end date of this time of particular focus on all creation and our "common home" (Earth).

We, Sisters of Mercy Parramatta Congregation, have committed ourselves in our Chapter Statement to "to enjoy and celebrate Earth’s beauty and bounty and her many honour our duty to love and care for her and add to her well-being wherever possible".

We have resolved "to live simply, in a way that takes into account the fragility of Mother Earth"  and to "protect the rights of the natural world and make practical efforts to stem the hurtful effects of climate change, pollution and the ‘throw away’ mentality."

In these ways we have determined to respond to 'the cry of the Earth and the cry of the Poor' (Laudato Si' #49)

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