News & Events Weekly Update

23 October 2017

News and Events across the Diocese of Parramatta and beyond



Postal survey on proposed change to the Marriage Act

We remind you that the survey closes on Tuesday, 7 November 2017 (6pm local time). Any surveys received after this will not be counted. As we exercise our democratic responsibility in responding to the survey it is important to remember that the postal survey is about whether or not Australians want the legal definition of civil marriage changed to include same-sex couples.  It is not a referendum on sacramental marriage, however we are called to consider carefully the implications of any change. In the words of Bishop Vincent: “Whatever the outcome of the survey or the eventual legislation by the government, the Church will continue to hold that marriage is a natural institution established by God to be a permanent union between one man and one woman, directed both to mutual companionship and to the formation of a family in which children are born and nurtured.”

Let us pray, discern and act with the wisdom of the Holy Spirit.

Represent our Diocese: Share your Wisdom

Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv is calling for greater participation of lay people through new advisory councils. Please consider nominating or encourage someone you know. Details, including the nomination kit, are available from or by contacting Tanya from the Diocesan Ministry Centre on 02 8838 3460. Nominations close on Sunday, 5 November 2017.

Diocesan Liturgy Conference 2017

The Diocesan Liturgy Conference will be held on Saturday 4 November at St Andrew’s Parish, Marayong. The conference, ‘Liturgy: The Living Presence of Christ’ is an excellent opportunity to gather together as a Diocese and explore the Presence of Christ in Liturgy. Day includes Keynote Speaker and various workshops including: Music and copyright, Bringing Christ to the Sick, Scripture and the Season of Advent, Sacraments of Initiation – a Field Perspective., organising a Mass- Ordos, Missals and Lectionaries. For more information go to: or Office for Worship

Pre-marriage preparation

The Life Marriage & Family Office in the Diocese of Parramatta has now launched an online booking system, allowing couples to enrol for pre-marriage preparation programs and to pay by credit card. Couples will be guided on the website to the most appropriate form of preparation, i.e., the Pre-Marriage Weekend Course (Friday evening & Sunday) or Prepare/Enrich, an individual couple preparation with face to face feedback sessions. Both preparations are designed to strengthen and enrich the couple’s relationship and work on building a rewarding life together. Bookings may be made and dates chosen by visiting our website Enquiries may be made to our office on 8838 3460 or email

Grief to Grace – Healing the Wounds of Abuse

Grief to Grace – Healing the Wounds of Abuse is a spiritual retreat for anyone who has suffered degradation or violation through physical, emotional, sexual or spiritual abuse. The retreat will be held April 8th – 13th 2018. To request an application contact Anne by emailing or phone 0407704539. For more information visit

Holy Hour for Vocations: 2 November

The Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth cordially invite YOUTH (ages 18-35) to join us for Holy Hour for Vocations. Thursday, 2nd November 2017, at 7:00 pm. Join us also for pizza at 8:00pm. Holy Spirit Convent, 120 Capuchin Way, Plumpton. RSVP: Sr Paula by 28th June, email: or mobile 0449 656 406.

Rachel’s Vineyard Healing Retreat: 3-5 November

This weekend retreat in Sydney is designed to bring psychological and spiritual healing to anyone who has been affected by an abortion experience including women, men, couples and grandparents. Rachel’s Vineyard Ministries Australia is supported by the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference. Confidential inquiries: tel or SMS 0400 092 555, For more information visit:

Mass in the African tradition: 5 November

Join us as we celebrate Mass in the African tradition. Very Rev Peter G Williams will celebrate Mass at 2.00pm at Mary, Queen of the Family Parish, 51-59 Allawah Street Blacktown. Contact Stella Nwosu 0405 478 472.

Seminar for Couples hoping to conceive: 12 November

Waiting for Gabriel is a seminar allowing couples to hear about Restorative Reproductive Medicine and natural methods of achieving pregnancy that are more successful than IVF. This topic is of particular interest to couples that are trying to conceive a child where they may have infertility issues and are seeking medical intervention to help them.

Hear from trained professionals on the different methods of Natural Fertility Awareness which are used in conjunction with NaPro Technology (Natural Procreative Technology). There will be guest couples’ testimonies and the opportunity for questions. Afternoon tea will be catered. Sunday, 12th November 2017, 1:30pm-4:00pm at the Institute for Mission (IFM), 1-5 Marion St, Blacktown. To reserve your place, please RSVP to or 8838 3460. For more information about the event, visit

Nigerian Mass in Igbo: 12 November

Rev Fr Chukwunonyerem Akamadu, Chaplain to the Nigerian Catholic community, will celebrate Mass at 11.30am at Our Lady Queen of Peace Parish, 198 Old Prospect Road, Greystanes. Contact Fr Akamadu tel 0451 174 438, Stella Nwosu 0405 478 472.

St Philomena Association Holy Mass: 18 November

St John Vianney was very devoted to St Philomena. Pope Gregory XVI called her “the great wonder worker”. Mass at noon with Confession from 11.30am: St John Vianney’s Church, 17 Cameron St, Doonside. A short walk north from Doonside station, the one past Blacktown. Please bring a snack to share. Elizabeth tel or text 0423 15 44 63, Facebook: Libby Peoples (events)

Holy Hour for Vocations: 24 November

Everyone is welcome to join the Holy Hour for Vocations from 6:30pm-7.30pm for an hour of adoration, prayer, music and quiet time at Our Lady of the Rosary Parish, St Marys. For information about priesthood in the Diocese of Parramatta and Holy Spirit Seminary, please contact Fr John Paul Escarlan, Director of Priestly Vocations,

Shrine Time for Young Adults 18-35: 26 November

One Holy Hour with prayer, reflection, meditation, praise & worship. 2017 is devoted to Praying for Vocations and Devotion to Mary as per our Holy Father’s intentions for WYD 2018 in Panama. From 7.30pm-8.30pm followed by social gathering.

Mary, honoured as the Mother Thrice Admirable, offers 3 graces in the Shrine, this monthly event is a unique opportunity to experience them regularly: Discover your HOME in the hearts of Jesus and Mary; See breakthrough TRANSFORMATION in your life; and Get your spiritual boost to be an authentic WITNESS. In the Shrine at Mount Schoenstatt, 230 Fairlight Road, Mulgoa.

Worldwide Marriage Encounter Weekend: 24-26 November

A Worldwide Marriage Encounter Weekend is a Marriage Enrichment experience for married couples – set in peaceful, picturesque surroundings, away from the distractions of everyday life.  During the weekend, couples have a unique opportunity to reconnect, rekindle and refresh their relationship. Take time out of your busy schedule, to invest in your most precious asset . . .  your Marriage! Weekend date: 24th -26th November, at Mt Carmel Retreat Centre, Varroville, NSW. Bookings online at or Adrian and Janet Sullivan: on 0490 774 419 or [email protected].com

Discernment to the Permanent Diaconate: 26 November

Come and learn more about vocations to the Diaconate and have a chat with our team members. We are looking for men aged between 35 to 55 and residing in the Diocese of Parramatta. Our discernment program consists of five sessions, with each session dealing with different aspects of the Diaconate. This is the fifth session of the 2017 program.  Subsequent sessions will be announced in due course. Venue: St. John 23rd Parish, 160 Perfection Ave, Stanhope Gardens, NSW 2768. Time: 3:30 to 6 pm (including Mass and fellowship).

For further information visit please contact any of the following deacons:

Deacon James –

Deacon Tan – or 0407270782

Deacon George –

International Day of People with Disability: 3 December

The International Day of People with Disability is observed annually on 3 December. In Australia, over many years, the Church has sought to take this day as an opportunity to encourage a truly pastoral view that embraces our total community as the living Body of Christ. We especially pray that we, the Church, can strive to be a people of compassion and relationship, and a sacred place where our gifts are acknowledged, received and celebrated; for then we can truly proclaim that we are ‘one Body in Christ’.

For more events please go to:

Please note, some of these notices have been provided to the Diocese of Parramatta, with the request they be made available to parishes and parishioners. The Diocese of Parramatta makes these notices available for information purposes only and does not expressly endorse any of this material, unless otherwise specified. The Diocese of Parramatta cannot be held responsible for any inaccurate or defamatory content.

Read Daily
* indicates required