News & Events

Dialogue and Reconciliation in the Middle East

We are all invited to join with Pope Francis and his worldwide prayer network in praying this month's intention: Dialogue and Reconciliation in the Middle East

Let us pray that a spirit of dialogue, encounter, and reconciliation emerge in the Middle East, where diverse religious communities share their lives together.



In the Middle East, concord and dialogue among the three monotheistic religions is based on spiritual and historic bonds.
The Good News of Jesus, risen out of love, came to us from these lands. Today, many Christian communities, together with Jewish and Muslim communities, work here for peace, reconciliation, and forgiveness.
Let us pray that a spirit of dialogue, encounter, and reconciliation emerge in the Middle East.

- Pope Francis, November 2019

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


Celebrate National Reconciliation week



You are invited to a Morning Tea and Film to celebrate National Reconciliation Week

The focus will be on the Uluru Statement from the Heart that asks for Voice, Truth-Telling and Treaty

Venue: Sisters of Mercy Congregation Centre, 6 Victoria Rd., Parramatta
Date: Monday, May 27, 2019
Time: 10:30am - 12:30pm
Parking: Access to the Cathedral overflow carpark opposite the venue will be available between 10:15- 10:30am


'We directed the Statement at the Australian people because it is by their pen - our pens - that we change the Constitution... We hoped Australians would listen. And they were listening. They are listening. The support we have received from the Australian people for the Uluru Statement from the Heart and the proposal for a Voice has been overwhelming. My people have not been abandoned by the Australian people; they are simply consistently abandoned by the Australian political elite.'

—Megan Davis, Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous and Professor of Law at the University of New South Wales, Uluru, May 26 2017

National Reconciliation Week 2019

National Reconciliation Week (NRW) in Australia (27 May - 3 June) is held to celebrate Indigenous history and culture and to celebrate and promote respectful relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and other Australians.


This year during National Reconciliation Week, Reconciliation Australia invites Australians from all backgrounds to contribute to our national movement towards a unified future. The theme is: Grounded in Truth Walk Together with Courage


We, Sisters of Mercy Parramatta Congregation, came to this area in 1888. For over 60,000 years, this area comprising present day Parramatta has been occupied by the Burramattagal people, a clan of the Darug, who first settled along the upper reaches of the Parramatta River. Burramattagal is thought to be derived from the Aboriginal word for 'place where the eels lie down' to breed (within the Parramatta River).

As we prepare to move forward together, this week offers us and all non-Indigenous Australians a wonderful opportunity to learn more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history and culture. Read the latest issue of Reconciliation News (PDF)
Consult the Guide to explore the theme and be inspired to action (PDF)
Check out some of the recommended books, reports and films (PDF)

More information about the traditional owners of this land, the Darug people, can be learned here




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