Reflecting on Mary MacKillop’s eventful life there is a realisation that she lived a type of nomadic existence.
Her grounded spiritual approach to life enabled her to travel to establish new foundations and to meet the needs of the sisters and the needs of the times. Her journeys took her to many parts of the continent by many means of transport. As a woman of this era she imbibed a remarkable knowledge of the land and the conditions that ordinary Australians endured.
Her journeys were always taken in the spirit of Joseph. Joseph experienced many journeys into the unknown. We think of his life as being hidden and silent, yet he was a strong man of his time seeped in faith and spirituality as he protectively and courageously took on this special role. We are grateful for his witness of the Incarnation, for ensuring a safe return to Nazareth, for searching for Jesus, for teaching his child and for preparing Jesus for the enormous ministry he was about to embark on. Pope Francis reminds us:
…Many writers, artists and other social commentators, Christian or not, acknowledged that Josephite spirituality illustrates the earthy spirit of Australia.
- Mary MacKillop drew great strength from St Joseph. Our foundress, leaning on the words of scripture reminds us to Go to Joseph? Perhaps St Joseph has an inspiration of us today.
- Mary MacKillop was known for travelling the land. An image is often used of a woman with sleeves rolled up. Let her walk with you in your work and daily chores; call on her ecological stance that she shared with Julian and Joseph.
- Through the intercession of Mary MacKillop and St Joseph ask for the courage you need to face whatever may come.
Michele Shipperley rsj
Image: Our Lady of Lourdes Church Parish Logo – Dorothy Woodward rsj, 2015.