News & Events

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.

Asylum Seekers and Refugees

All Sisters of Mercy throughout the world take four vows as part of their commitment within religious life. The fourth of these vows is a vow of service to the poor, sick and ignorant. This vow of service is a significant dimension of our lives and the fourth vow social justice group is one way in which the Sisters, with others who share our passion for social justice, express this commitment.

The 4th Vow social justice group and friends met in Parramatta on Saturday 24 May to reflect on and discuss current justice issues of concern under the title ‘Keeping Hope Alive’.

The issues were:

  • The government proposal to send refugees from Nauru to Cambodia;
  • Water: our involvement with Mercy Global Concern to make the UN list water as a human right;
  • The budget: who wins, who loses.

We viewed DVDs on the topics and vigorous discussion followed. We signed a letter of thanks to Sr Denise Coghlan for her part in the Dateline program on Cambodia. An action sheet with addresses for relevant ministers was distributed and we were encouraged to take some action both to try to bring about change of policies and also to enable ourselves to ‘keep hope alive’.

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. 

International Nurses Day - Honouring Those Who Care

From the earliest days of the Sisters of Mercy, Nursing has been a core ministry of the Sisters, and a means by which Sisters could bring the compassionate love of God, to those in need of healing.

May 12,  the anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale, marks International Nurses Day, an annual international celebration of the contribution of Nurses and the Nursing Profession, to the health and wellbeing of society and its members.

The Sisters of Mercy, who worked alongside Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War, and on whom Florence Nightingale depended, today provide healthcare around the globe whether in large, state of the art hospitals and health facilities or in the streets of developing countries and refugee camps. Irrespective of the location or setting, Sisters of Mercy and their colleagues and ministry partners strive to provide care that is compassionate and competent, respecting the inherent dignity of each individual.

On this International Nurses Day, the Sisters of Mercy reflect with gratitude on the generous and dedicated service of Nurses around the world, and pray that their healing ministry will bring wholeness to those in need.



Stella Maris Gives Thanks for Dedicated Auxiliary Members

On a glorious Autumn day, members of the two Stella Maris Auxiliaries were joined by Sisters of Mercy, staff, residents and friends to celebrate and give thanks for the wonderful, committed support provided to Stella Maris by the auxiliaries since the Opening of Stella Maris in 1987.

The Mass was concelebrated by Fr Paul Foley and Fr Francis Martin, both of whom have had a long association with Stella Maris, with Fr Martin now a resident.

Sr Catherine Ryan, Congregation Leader of the Sisters of Mercy Parramatta, addressed the gathering to express the gratitude of the Sisters for the many years of dedicated service and support by past and present members of the auxiliaries. The beauty of the environment, the quality of equipment and services, and the "extra" care and attention provided to residents have all been enhanced by the activities of the auxiliaries through fundraising and volunteering of their time in tending the garden, running the kiosk, and supporting residents.

As always, Mass was followed by a delicious afternoon tea in the activity room where guests could enjoy good company with magnificent view.