For some time, the winds of change have been blowing around the Mary MacKillop Penola Centre.

Changes are afoot with the appointment of a new co-ordinator following the retirement of Mrs Claire Larkin in September, 2018. Sisters of Saint Joseph, Loreto O’Connor and Sue McGuinness, took on this role in a care-taking capacity as acting co-ordinators until a new appointment was made.

Marie Valenzuela took up her position in a part-time capacity on 10 February, 2020. The position is generously supported by the Archdiocese of Adelaide. This financial support emphasises the importance the Archdiocese places on Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop in the life of the Church and the significance of Penola as a sacred place of pilgrimage.

Marie has been a generous volunteer at the Centre for approximately 18 years, contributing her skills in computing and technology in a variety of ways and serving on the co-ordinating committee. Now she brings a variety of other skills, and her years of professional experience, to her role, which includes secretarial work, administration, property management, media experience and customer service.

Marie lives locally and is actively involved in St Joseph’s Catholic parish. She has imbibed the spirit of Mary MacKillop and Julian Tenison Woods over the years and she is keen to deepen her understanding of their spirituality and its relevance to our world today.

Marie was warmly congratulated and welcomed to this position by the co-ordinating committee when it met on 5 February, 2020. We offer her our very best wishes and our gratitude for accepting this challenging role.

Sue McGuinness rsj