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 Day Greetings

The Sisters of Mercy, Parramatta, Australia and all our partners in ministry wish you a very happy Mercy Day.

We hope that wherever you are in our world you will have the opportunity to gather and give thanks for the wonderful gift of Mercy that is our legacy to share with our world and with all people. Happy Mercy Day!

-The Leadership Team, Parramatta: Mary-Louise Petro, Maria Lawton, Patricia Bolster, Margaret Sheppard and Margaret Jones

Parishes at the service of mission: September 2017 Prayer intention of Pope Francis

We are all invited to join with Pope Francis and his worldwide prayer network in praying this month's intention: Parishes at the service of mission.

Text of the August video:

'The arts give expression to the beauty of the faith and proclaim the Gospel message of the grandeur of God’s creation.

When we admire a work of art or a marvel of nature, we discover how everything speaks to us of Him and of His love.

That artists of our time, through their creativity, may help us discover the beauty of creation.'

We invite you to post a prayer or reflection in our prayer space

Call for an Inclusive and Sustainable Australian Economy

'We will open our hearts to the cries of the poor'
(Chapter Statement)
Sisters of Mercy Parramatta Congregation welcome the call to Australians to work for an economy that is based on principles of justice and equity – one that is at the service of all, particularly the most vulnerable and marginalised.

The call from Bishop Long OFM Conv. came at the launch of the Australian Catholic Bishops’ 2017–2018 Social Justice Statement, entitled Everyone’s Business: Developing an inclusive and sustainable economy.

The Statement highlights that although Australia has enjoyed a quarter-century of uninterrupted growth, the benefits have not been spread evenly. The top 20 per cent of households have received far greater increases in wealth than the poorest 20 per cent and nearly three million Australians, including 730,000 children, are living in poverty.

Drawing on the teachings of the Gospel and more than 120 years of Catholic social teaching, the Statement sets out five principles that could form the foundations of a just and inclusive economy:
• People and nature are not mere tools of production.
• Economic growth alone cannot ensure inclusive and sustainable development.
• Social equity must be built into the heart of the economy.
• Businesses must benefit all society, not just shareholders.
• The excluded and vulnerable must be included in decision-making.

Download the Statement here (20pps; PDF)

Fresh Mercy Paths

St Michael’s Family Centre Baulkham Hills has had, over many years, a recognised history for providing care and support for women and children who are at risk of homelessness as a result of domestic violence.

With the changing face of the Congregation, St Michael’s became unable to continue to provide direct assistance as in the past, so in early 2016 an ‘Invited Grants Program’ was inaugurated and titled ‘St Michael’s Fund’.

Through the work of a small committee comprising of two Mercy colleagues (Kerry Walshaw and Carol Harding) and two Sisters of Mercy (Margaret Harper and Margaret Sheppard), three organisations each year have been recipients of grants ranging from $A9,000 to $A20,000 to assist in their provision of direct services to women and children at risk and who live within the Greater Western Sydney and Hills District’s regions.

On August 11, 2017, three organisations received cheques to support their work which reached out in diverse ways to meet needs: Cumberland Women’s Health Centre Houses to Homes (Catherine’s Villa) and The Sanctuary, The Hills Women’s Community Shelter (Women’s Community Shelters). The presentation of cheques was incorporated into a celebratory morning tea, and each representative of the organisations spoke to her program with enthusiasm and appreciation.

It is envisaged that St Michael’s Fund will continue reaching out with arms of Mercy to women and children at risk in the spirit of Catherine McAuley and St Michael’s Family Centre tradition.

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