News & Events Weekly Update

News & events across the Diocese of Parramatta and beyond.
Following Mass of the Holy Innocents on 28 December, there will be a rosary procession to the Franciscan shrine at Kellyville. Photo: Diocese of Parramatta.

Advent – a Season of Hope: 26 November

Reflection Day for Women with presenter Sr Mary Louise Walsh ISSM. From 9.30am-3pm at Mt Schoenstatt, Fairlight Rd, Mulgoa. Cost: $25, BYO lunch – morning & afternoon tea provided. To register tel (02) 4773 8338,

ACU Advent Lessons and Carols: 28 November

Led by the ACU Strathfield Student Choir. Starts 6pm, followed by light refreshments. Barron Memorial Chapel, Australian Catholic University, Strathfield Campus, 25A Barker Rd, Strathfield. Details: tel (02) 9701 4223,

Scripture Reflection Evening – The Gospel of Matthew: 30 November 

The Institute for Mission is hosting a Bible study evening led by Dr Michele Connolly RSJ. Sr Michele is a biblical studies lecturer at the Catholic Institute of Sydney and will be opening up the Gospel of Matthew in preparation for the upcoming advent season and liturgical year. From 7pm-9pm at the IFM, 1-5 Marion St, Blacktown. RSVP 25 November:

Christmas at the Shrine: 3 December 2016

The Franciscan Shrine of the Holy Innocents is hosting a fun day for the whole family with a Christmas carol singalong, blessing of the baby Jesus, sausage sizzle, face painting, Christmas craft booth, soccer fun and games, Christmas raffle, Christmas tea and a visit from Santa Claus. From 10am-1pm at the Shrine, 8 Greyfriar Place, Kellyville. Park in Our Lady of the Rosary Church car park (8 Diana Avenue) and walk next door to the Shrine.

Restoration of St Bens: 4 December 2016

The restoration of the historic St Benedict’s Church, Broadway, is complete and will be celebrated with a Mass and Blessing at 10.30am on Sunday 4 December 2016, led by Bishop Richard Umbers. St Benedict’s, the country’s oldest consecrated Catholic church, is located on The University of Notre Dame Australia’s Sydney Campus at 104 Broadway. Parishioners and those who have had a connection with St Benedict’s Parish and the schools that were once on its grounds are particularly welcome, as well as current and past staff and students from Notre Dame.

Trip to Shrine of Our Lady of Mercy, Sutton Forest

You are invited to join the Sacred Heart Parish community for a day trip on Tuesday 6 December that includes coach travel, morning tea, self-guided tour of the grounds and shrines. BYO picnic lunch. Departs 9.30am from Sacred Heart Parish, 14 Ralph St, Westmead, returns approx 4pm. Cost: $15pp. Bookings close 29 November. Tel (02) 9635 9262,

Advent Lectio: 7 December 2016

“Our lives are an Advent, a time of waiting, listening and hoping, a time of openness to the unimaginable gift of God.” Maria Boulding OSB.

Facilitator: Christine Manning SGS. In reflecting and pondering the Advent readings on this day we will allow ourselves to be attentive and welcoming to the coming of Christ among us, God-with-us, the One our world so sorely needs.

From 10.00am-3.30pm at the Mount St Benedict Centre, Pennant Hills Road, Pennant Hills (entrance off Hull Rd). Cost: $25 –BYO lunch. Bookings close Friday 2 December 2016. Tel (02) 9484 6208 or send an email to

QndA on Euthanasia and Palliative Care: 7 December 2016

Tickets are now available for this QndA forum at St Benedict’s Hall, Notre Dame University, 104 Broadway (cnr Abercrombie Street) from 6pm on Wednesday 7 December 2016. Guest panellists will include: Most Rev Richard Umbers, Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney; Cabrini Health’s Director of Palliative Medicine, Assoc Prof Natasha Michael; Patron of Palliative Care Nurses Australia, Jean Kittson; Prof Margaret Somerville, Professor of Bioethics from Notre Dame University; Pro Paul Komesaroff from the Centre for Ethics in Medicine and Society; and Assoc Prof Justin Oakley from Monash University’s Centre for Bioethics. If you would like to join the audience on the night or if you would like to ask a question, get in quick as seating is limited and RSVP is essential. To RSVP, send an email to or click here.

Formation in Themes of Faith

This guided exploration of key components of Catholic life is designed for people who are keen for mutual conversation and prepared reflection – no prior formal studies in faith are required. The Institute for Mission partners with the Institute of Faith Education (Archdiocese of Brisbane) in offering this program. Participants complete the Institute of Faith Education’s Beginning Theology course.

An engaging collection of provided readings are the stimulus for the group to further explore the Catholic faith. The process helps participants in their competency and ongoing growth regarding several key areas of life in faith: God (themes of Spirituality and Trinity), Word of God (themes of Scripture, Old and New), People of God (themes of Church, Sacrament and Spirit) and Living in God’s Love (themes of Catholic teaching and living). Applications close 11 December. For further details click here.

Twilight Carols: 15 December 2016

Everyone is welcome to Twilight Carols in the Mausoleum of the Resurrection Chapel at Rookwood Catholic Cemetery from 7pm-8pm. Help to bring some joy to those less fortunate by donating canned goods, packaged goods and toiletries to the Catholic Cemeteries & Crematoria Christmas Hamper Appeal. You are invited to bring a plate of food to share after the service. A ‘special guest’ will also make an appearance for the children. For more information tel 1300 114 997 or send an email to

Music & Readings for Christmas: 18 December

Spectacular annual Christmas concert with massed choir, Penrith Symphony Brass, harp, handbells,  solo artists, Amy Johansen organ and Robert Ampt conductor. Join in congregational carols, experience the thrill of Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus with choir, organ, brass and timpani on this night of Christmas joy. Suggested minimum donations: families $30 & individuals $10. Starts 7.30pm in St Finbar’s Catholic Church 46 Levy Street, Glenbrook.

Noel! Noel! Christmas Concert: 19 December

New Zealand soprano Madison Nonoa will join the voices of the Brandenburg Choir for this year’s performance of Noël! Noël! In St Patrick’s Cathedral. The program includes choral folk melodies, much-loved carols, rousing 16th Century hymns, and other rare musical delights from around the world. Starts 7.30pm in St Patrick’s Cathedral, 1 Marist Plc, Parramatta. To book online, click here.

Mass of the Holy Innocents: 28 December

The principal celebrant for the 23rd annual pro-life Mass will be Sydney’s Bishop Richard Umbers. Mass at 11am at Our Lady of the Rosary Parish, 8 Diana Ave, Kellyville, followed by a rosary procession to the Franciscan Shrine of the Holy Innocents for devotions and benediction. Everyone is welcome to pray for the protection of all human life (especially the unborn) from conception to natural death. A luncheon will be provided – please bring a plate to share. Inquiries (02) 9629 2595.

Girls’ Camp at Mount Schoenstatt: 11-14 January 2017

Girls aged 10-12 are invited to a three-day camp at Mt Schoenstatt. We will explore how our faith connects with our everyday lives. Program also includes prayer, craft and fun activities. From 4pm on Wednesday 11 January 2017 to 4pm on Saturday 14 January 2017. Venue: Home of Light, Mount Schoenstatt, 230 Fairlight Rd, Mulgoa. Cost: $110 (includes food and accomm). RSVP: Monday 12 December (registration form and deposit required). Inquiries: Sr M Luka 0439 537 843,

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