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A weekend Silent Retreat at Hartzer Park, Bowral : 9th October (6pm) to 11th October (3pm). Come and experience through the external silence how God wants to satisfy our deep longing, through the Word of God. There will be guided talks, time for personal reflection and opportunities for spiritual guidance from the missionaries. Cost $220. Please contact Verbum Dei Missionaries (02) 9313 7099 or email email@example.com if you are interested.
Someone once said that Father’s Day was no different from Mother’s day, except that on Father’s day, children didn’t have to worry too much about getting their dads a gift because most fathers don’t really expect to receive one. However, the importance of Father’s day (as it should be with Mother’s Day) is that it should become a day of recognising and being thankful for the important role a father (or father figure) plays in the life of a family. Indeed fathers do play a significant role in the family. Children need a father (or a father figure) in their lives. The late Pope John Paul II in his Apostolic Exhortation “Redemptoris Custos” (Guardian of the Redeemer) on 15 August 1989, asked the faithful to reflect on and understand the role of fatherhood in relation to the person of St Joseph, the husband of Mary. We call Mary “Mother of the Church” for she was the mother of Jesus, and at the foot of the cross, Jesus entrusts his disciples to her care (John 19:26). In the same way we look to St. Joseph as “Patron and Protector of the Universal Church” and in doing so, we recognize and honour his fatherly role of protector of the “Holy Family.”
As a Church, we uphold St. Joseph as the model for husbands and fathers. So what can husbands and fathers learn from the person of St. Joseph? From what we know from the gospels, St Joseph faced a few major dilemmas in his life. One of his dilemmas was whether to accept Mary as his wife or to abandon her, after hearing that she was pregnant before they married (Matt 1:18-19). Another dilemma was to choose between remaining in Nazareth, his home/comfort-zone or to flee to Egypt (a foreign country) in order to protect his family (Matt 2:13-18). We can say that in these times of dilemma, Joseph aware of the gravity of each situation, discerned what was just/good not only for him, but also for Mary and later for the infant Jesus as well. He was a person who listened to, and was aware of, his “inner calling”. It happened because apart from being a just man, he had other “grounding” qualities like faith, humility and a caring demeanour. We can all learn from St Joseph’s discerning attitude when dealing with our own families’ dilemmas and issues. And while dealing with those issues, if we discern that what we choose, is in line with God’s will for us, then we can certainly trust that the outcome will bring joy and peace not only to us but to our whole family as well.
I trust that many of us can readily see these qualities in our fathers. Today, we as a community thank God for the gifts of our fathers and we pray that God may give them the wisdom to carry out their role of guiding and protecting our families.
Happy Father’s Day.
Volunteers and friends from Cana Communities will be with us this weekend seeking our help. Cana Communities provide family-type support for people from the streets. Cana Communities is one of the largest providers of crisis beds in the inner city. They will be holding an appeal at all Masses this weekend. Donations over $2 are tax deductible. Even if you don’t donate, they would love to tell you about their community.
Pattaya Thai Restaurant 200 Anzac Pde Kensington at 7pm. BYO. All Welcome. Bookings: Martin O’Loughlin 9662 8559 or e: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The next meeting of the Mission & Outreach Group will be on Wednesday evening 9 September in the Rosary Room at 7pm. All welcome.
This term, Year 3B have been learning about Pentecost, saints, and the Eucharist. They explored the disciples wait for Jesus’ promised coming of the Holy Spirit upon them, and the remarkable transformation that took place when this occurred. They wrote diary entries from the point of view of a disciple or a witness to the amazing events, which were so crucial to the growth and spread of the Word of Jesus.
The students explored the Christian call to be saints by looking at people in their own lives who demonstrate love and service to others, whether that be family members, friends, leaders, etc. They explored the lengthy and involved process whereby saints are canonised. Each student then did a research project and presentation on a particular saint, often choosing their namesake saint. Most importantly they examined how their chosen saint can be an example in their own life.
Our students are now studying the celebration of the Eucharist in anticipation of their first Holy Communion in October. Besides the preparation for this important event in their lives, the unit focuses on the key parts of the Mass and explores the ways Christ is present in all of these sections. The Mass is examined as being central to the life of the community. By remembering and making present the saving act of God in Christ and giving thanks and praise, they will share the Eucharist and become one body in Christ.
Year 3B look forward to this hugely important event in their young lives.
The Australian Catholic University is one of the sponsors of a two day conference to be held on 17-18 September at St Michael’s Uniting Church, Collins St, Melbourne to reflect on and respond to Pope Francis’ Pontificate. There is also a Youth Forum on 16 September at that Church and a Public Forum on Thursday night 17 September at Australian Catholic University. A discount and group registrations are available for parishes, schools and other groups. For more information refer to the attached flyer or visit www.acu.edu.au/popefrancis and to register visit https://www.acu.edu.au/616950 or Tel/Email contact: 02 9701 4176 / email@example.com.