If cemeteries can be said to be beautiful places, Bourke cemetery is. It’s strangely peaceful and quite stark in its beauty. Old pioneers are buried alongside generations of loved ones. It’s a place to be reflective in, a place to think about the things that matter and the things that don’t. Bourke is in the Catholic Diocese of Wilcannia-Forbes and it is one of many rural and isolated towns in outback NSW.
So said Bishop Bill as he welcomed people to Sacred Heart Cathedral for the Chrism Mass, the liturgy in which the holy oils are blessed for sacramental use in the coming year. Also at this Mass all present – the People of God, the deacons and the priests – renew their commitment to ministry in Jesus’ name.
Of course, I should have been thinking about repentance and forgiveness, sin and grace, because we are in Lent. But I actually came to be thinking about these things because I had a talk to give about Martin Luther, to mark the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation this year. Luther’s reformation was very much caught up with the notion of repentance.
Representing the values of courage, leadership, fidelity and strength, the inaugural “Magdalene” was awarded on 12 March.
In September 2016, a contingent of Catholic students established the University of Newcastle (UoN) Catholic Society. The group initially came together at the university’s weekly Wednesday Mass and has since continued to grow in number.
Joy: an emotion of keen or lively pleasure arising from present or expected good.
This definition explains why as a Christian I should always be full of joy. At times of quietness and prayer, with the realisation and acceptance that God loves me intimately, I am filled with a deep certainty that all will be well.