Are you planning a trip to Melbourne this festive season? If so, we welcome you to come and stay at the Mary MacKillop Heritage Centre in East Melbourne.
Situated in the heart of Melbourne, the Mary MacKillop Heritage Centre offers visitors a scenic escape from the hustle and bustle of the Melbourne CBD, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in a place of peace, calmness, and serenity.
Recently, I had the privilege of meeting a group of parishioners from Morpeth (in the Maitland-Newcastle Diocese) and lead them on a pilgrimage In the Footsteps of Mary MacKillop at St Joseph’s Spirituality and Education Centre, Kincumber South situated on the Central Coast of New South Wales.
The Sisters of Saint Joseph have maintained a significant link to Kincumber since Mary MacKillop and the Sisters first established this site as a home for boys in 1887.
Mary MacKillop was a prolific letter writer to her Sisters as they spread across Australia and New Zealand. She provided encouragement, practical and spiritual advice. Her letter dated 13 November 1883 was a very personal one to the Sisters in South Australia.
What were the circumstances which led to her leaving Adelaide at short notice?
- Attitudes of the clergy
- Difficulties in communication
To celebrate 150 years since Mary MacKillop embarked on her first overseas journey (March 1873 – December 1874), the Sisters of Saint Joseph share reflections and details from Mary’s travels to and from Europe – sourced from Mary’s letters and Congregational Archives.
When Mary MacKillop went to Rome to seek Papal approval for the Congregation of the Sisters of Saint Joseph, she also spent time in the United Kingdom. During her stay there, the idea was mooted that she should visit Scotland – the homeland of her parents and many Scottish relatives and friends now resident in Australia. Mary, however, felt that her emotional link to Scotland was not sufficient reason for her to go there.
We invite you to pray with St Mary MacKillop – a prayer written by our Irish Sisters of Saint Joseph…
World Youth Day (WYD) is an international event for young Catholics. This year, WYD took place in Lisbon, Portugal from 1-6 August.
I was blessed to be one of the estimated 1.5 million pilgrims who gathered for the event. I travelled to WYD with the Sydney Archdiocese, and then completed most of the pilgrimage with the Maronite Catholic Youth.
A Message from Sr Monica Cavanagh, Congregational Leader, Sisters of Saint Joseph.
Let us rejoice in the gift of Mary MacKillop to our Church and our world as we celebrate her feast day.
In the Gospel of Matthew, we are told that “towards dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb.” (28:1) Earlier we had been told that, after Joseph of Arimathea had placed the body of Jesus in a new tomb and sealed it, “Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were there, sitting opposite the tomb”. (27:61)
Now, there are so many Marys in the Gospels that one scholar even suggested that Mary was not a name but a title given to a number of women in the New Testament, signifying a particular function in the early Christian community. Whatever about that, there is a certain mystery about “the other Mary” who figures at the end of Matthew’s Gospel.
By metaphoric leap and midrashic application, I want to apply it to St Mary MacKillop, since we begin to understand her if we see that she, like any other of the saints, is a saint precisely because she is a witness of the Resurrection; she was and is a woman who sat and sits “opposite the tomb”, a woman who went and still goes “to see the tomb”.
In going to see the tomb, we are told, the two Marys meet an angel who says to them, “Do not be afraid; for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and that he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him.”