News & Events

National Reconciliation Week

National Reconciliation Week celebrates the relationship between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and all other Australians.  Every year, the week is held between the same dates, 27 May to 3 June.  The dates draw attention to significant historical events in Australia.  On 27 May 1967, the referendum allowed the Australian Government to change the Constitution so that it could make specific laws that applied to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples that could assist in addressing inequalities.  They were now recognised in the national census.  The High Court's landmark Mabo decision, made on 3 June 1992, overturned the concept of 'terra nullius' (meaning that no one owned the lands before European Settlement).  It legally recognised that Indigenous people had a special relationship to the land-that existed prior to colonisation and still exists today.  This recognition paved the way for Indigenous land rights called Native Title. 

Australian Bishops Statement: Politics in Service of Peace

We will open our hearts to the cries of the poor using our energies, gifts and resources to address violence and discrimination especially for women and children, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, displaced persons, minority groups, the homeless, those suffering hardship because of poverty and those affected by injustice within the Church. (Chapter Statement).

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference statement for the 2019 Federal election draws attention to the needs of those who are poor or vulnerable, such as those who are homeless or are survivors of child sexual abuse, people with disability, asylum seekers and refugees, and those requiring aged or palliative care.

It calls for a renewed commitment to closing the gap between Indigenous Australians and the rest of the population, and for “an integrated approach to combatting poverty, restoring dignity to the excluded and at the same time protecting nature.”

The statement presents key principles of Catholic Social teaching to be considered and offers a prayer for the election (p6).

Download the Statement here.

Moving from Denial to Sustainability via Wonder

Environmental scientist and writer Haydn Washington believes that we will not solve the environmental crisis unless we change our worldview and ethics, and to do so we must rejuvenate our sense of wonder at nature.


Our goal should be to look at the world in a way that takes nothing for granted.
Everything is phenomenal; everything is incredible; to be spiritual is to be constantly amazed
-
Rabbi Abraham Herschel

About Haydn

Haydn has degrees in Ecology, Eco-toxicology (MSc) and Social Ecology (PhD).
He has worked as an Investigations Scientist in the CSIRO, as Director of the Nature Conservation Council of NSW and as an environmental consultant.
Haydn has conducted many flora surveys as plant ecologist (e.g. in the Gardens of Stone and Wollemi National Parks).
He has been a councillor on the Australian Conservation Foundation and a media officer for the Wilderness Society.
Haydn was Director of Sustainability at Willoughby City Council from 2007 to 2009, and wrote the first Sustainability Charter of any Council in Australia.

Date: Saturday May 25, 2019
Time: 9.30am-12.30pm.
Place: Catherine McAuley Room 6 Victoria Road, Parramatta, NSW, 2150
Parking: In grounds or church parking area opposite
RSVP: valda.rsm@gmail.com

Everyday I see or hear something which kills me with delight
- Mary Oliver

Recognition of the Right of Christian Communities: March 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: Recognition of the Right of Christian Communities


Text of the March 2019 video:

“It might be hard for us to believe, but there are more martyrs today than in the first centuries.

They are persecuted because they speak the truth and proclaim Jesus Christ to this society.

This happens particularly where religious freedom is not yet guaranteed.

However, it also happens in countries where, in theory and on paper, they protect freedom and human rights.

Let us pray that Christian communities, especially those who are persecuted, feel that they are close to Christ and have their rights respected.”

- Pope Francis, March 2019




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

New Film About Catherine McAuley, Foundress of the Sisters of Mercy

Sponsored by the St Louis Mercy Health System, this latest telling of Catherine McAuley's life, a 23 minute docudrama, features re-enactments of actual events in the life of Catherine McAuley, from her childhood to her last days (1778-1841).

Filmed mainly on location in Ireland with Irish actors, the film makes for compelling viewing.

The film was made for Mercy International Association and is available online in order to reach the widest possible audience.

We invite you to view Catherine's story. Watch it here