April 2013
This page:  Br Mika and friends celebrate    Latest provincial circular    Passing of Fr Denis Mahony    International Formation Committee meets in Davao    Budding canonist returns to Fiji   Marist JPICCs plan together    St Peter Chanel novena begins    MAP meets in Wellington    Superior-General leaves Australia    Fr John Hannan at Provincial Council meeting     Sesquicentenary of Marists in USA    Our Lady's Nurses centenary    Superior-General at St Patrick's    Fr Paddy O'Hare leaves Japan     Maryvale gathering for Superior-General     Children's life of Jean-Claude Colin    Easter at Burnie     Kawakami painting blessed

Br Mika (2nd from left) and Br Steve Morelli (2nd from right) with indigenous friends at Nambucca Heads, NSW.

Br Mika and friends celebrate

Fijian Brother, Mika Cilicewa SM, was surrounded by friends, indigenous and non-indigenous alike, as he celebrated 40 years of Marist life recently.

In a picturesque bush setting on sacred tribal land at Nambucca Heads, NSW, fellow-members of the Aborignal Catholic Ministry team marked Br Mika's anniversary along with that of Sr Kathleen Sweeney RSJ (also 40 years) and Br Steve Morelli CFC (50 years).

  Far left: Br Mika with Superior-General, Fr John Hannan SM  /  with an aboriginal elder.

With Marist provincial, Fr Bob Barber, setting out for the annual meeting of the ACM team with their religious superiors, at Coffs Harbour on Apr 30.

Latest provincial circular

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Passing of Fr Denis Mahony

The Oceania Marist province and a legion of confreres and friends across the Pacific and beyond are mourning the sudden death on Apr 26 of Fr Denis Mahony SM.

Well known as a leader in spirituality and meditation in Fiji and surrounding countries, Fr Denis, was director of the Nazareth Prayer Centre at Wailekutu on the outskirts of the Fijian capital, Suva.

Joining the Marists in his native New Zealand Fr Denis gave his life to the peoples of Oceania and was spiritual guide to many. He was 73 and a priest for almost 49 years and will be sadly missed. May he rest in peace.


International Formation Committee
meets in Davao

From left: Frs Hubert Bonnet-Eymard [Europe], Didier Hadonou [Africa], John Hannan [Superior-General], Peter McAfee [New Zealand], Jose Maria da Silva [Brazil], Juan Carlos Pina Nava [Mexico], and Ben McKenna [Oceania]  /  with Fr Kevin Medilo [2nd from right]

Oceania Marist provincial, Fr Ben McKenna SM, reports from the Philippines on the meeting of the Marist International Formation Committee:

'The meeting is being held at the District house in Davao. It began on Apr 24 and will conclude on Apr 27 for its task of advising the Superior-General on matters of Formation.

'So far we have has looked at vocations promotion & recruitment; pre-novitiate formation as well as culture and languages, financing formation, Interaction between IFC and regional formation houses, number of novitiates, Marist profile in the future, Brothers’ training, assessment of students in a foreign culture and who decides, when and what for pastoral experience.'

Superior-General, Fr John Hannan, is attending the meeting having concluded his visitation of the Australian province and meeting with Marist Asia-Pacific leaders in New Zealand.


Budding canonist returns to Suva

Fijian Marist, Fr Tito Muavesi SM, is leaving Australia after three months internship with the Parramatta Diocese tribunal, working on a variety of cases and gaining valuable practical experience.

Ordained in 2006, Fr Tito, developed an interest in Canon Law during his seminary years at Marist College, Suva. He says: 'I want to be able to help the many people in my country who are in difficult canonical situations. There are very few trained people in the Pacific.'

It is likely that Fr Tito will continue his study of Canon Law in North America later this year.


Marists JPICCs plan together

Justice, Peace & Integrity of Creation committees from the Marist Sisters and the Marist Fathers met at Hunters Hill, NSW, on Apr 20 to plan for a combined event in mid-October.

The morning gathering set for Sat, Oct 19, will address issues calling for advocacy with the newly-elected parliament.


St Peter Chanel novena begins

On Apr 19 Marist Fathers throughout the world begin their annual novena for vocations through the intercession of St Peter Chanel, first martyr and pioneer missionary of Oceania. They are joined by their Marist lay companions.

The novena culminates with the Saint's feast day, Apr 28.

Australian Marists will use prayers and readings from the booklet, pictured left.


Back, from left: Frs Bob Barber (Aust), Susitino Sionepoe (Oceania), Pat Devlin (Philippines), Phil Cody and Brian Cummings (NZ).
Front: Frs Ben McKenna (Oceania), Peter McMurrich (Aust), John Hannan (Superior-General).

MAP meets in Wellington

Gathering for their annual meeting, Marist leaders from the Asia-Pacific region are meeting in Wellington, NZ.

Provincials and their vicars from Australia, NZ and Oceania with the superior of the Philippines Mission District have been joined by Superior-General, Fr John Hannan SM, for their Apr 18-20 meeting.

Their agenda includes reports from all regions including major items from recent unit chapters as well as the international review of governance and leadership, finance, vocations promotion, Marist mission experience, formation, lay Marists and Marists working in other MAP units.


Superior-General leaves Australia

After almost a month visiting members of the Marist Fathers' Australian Province, Fr John Hannan left Sydney for New Zealand on Apr 17 accompanied by local provincial and vicar, Frs Bob Barber and Peter McMurrich.

The three will attend the annual MAP (Marist Asia-Pacific) meeting, this year being held in Wellington.

On Apr 22 Fr John will fly to Davao, Philippines, for a meeting of the Marist International Formation Committee, as well as visiting the International Novitiate at Dumalag.


Fr John Hannan at Provincial Council meeting

In one of his final activities before leaving Australia, Superior-General, Fr John Hannan SM, has met with the Provincial Council of the Australian Province, at their monthly meeting on Apr 16.

Pictured, from left: Frs Kevin Bates, John Hannan, Bob Barber, Peter McMurrich and Kevin Stewart. (Not present: Fr Gerry Hall).


Sesquicentenary of Marists in USA

We offer hearty congratulations to the U.S. Province of the Society of Mary as it marks 150 years of Marist presence in the United states.

The event is being marked with a Mass of Thanksgiving in the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Atlanta, Georgia, on Apr 14.

For more about the Marists in the U.S. and the sesquicentenary, click here for the USA province website and sesquicentenary video clip.


OLN co-founders, Eileen O'Connor  /  Fr Edward McGrath MSC.

Our Lady's Nurses centenary

A packed St Mary's cathedral, Sydney, participated in the thanksgiving celebration Mass on Apr 14 marking the foundation of Our Lady's Nurses for the Poor one hundred years ago.

In his homily, Bishop Terry Brady paid tribute to the order's co-founders, Eileen O'Connor and Fr Edward McGrath MSC, and to the Sisters who continue to work amongst the poor of Sydney.

In addition to the large numbers of laity and religious, the Mass attracted fifty priests and eight bishops among whom was Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Paul Gallagher, who spoke at the conclusion of the liturgy.

Marist representation at the Mass honoured not only the Sisters but the memory of the late Br James Purcell SM whose sister was one of Our Lady's Nurses.


Superior-General at St Patrick's

More Sydney-based and out-of-town Marists met with Fr John Hannan SM at St Patrick's, Church Hill, Sydney, on Apr 12, for the third of the regional gatherings being held during the Superior-General's visit to Australia.

Fr Hannan again showed a visual presentation of the worldwide situation of the Society of Mary, issuing challenges to Australian Marists and inviting comments and discussion.


Fr Paddy O'Hare leaves Japan

After over forty years of service to the people of Nara and to Argentinian migrant workers, Fr Paddy O'Hare SM, has left for his native Ireland and future ministry in Europe.

The much-loved missionary was part of the official farewell in March 2012 marking the end of the Marist mission at Nara (see pictures below). He will spend some time in Coolock, Ireland, before moving to his next posting.

Thank you, Fr Paddy, for your years of devoted service.. and every blessing for the times ahead.


Maryvale gathering for Superior-General

Marist Fathers' Superior-General, Fr John Hannan SM, was joined by thirty Marists from the Sydney area at a regional meeting at 'Maryvale', Hunters Hil, on Apr 05.

Using a PowerPoint presentation, Fr John gave an overview of the Society of Mary internationally as well as speaking on a range of issues including the essentials of Marist life (interior life, community and ministry), the Beatification Cause of Jean-Claude Colin, Recruitment and Formation.

He also shared thoughts on the strengths and challenges of the Australian province as he saw them, provoking a stimulating range of responses from his audience of SM priests and brothers..


Children's Life of Jean-Claude Colin

A 16-page booklet for children 'The Life of Jean-Claude Colin, Founder of the Society of Mary' is now available. Initially in English, Spanish and Portuguese, the booklet will eventually be translated into other languages.

The English version (8pp, 3.8 Mb, PDF) can be downloaded from the Colin website

Printing tip: Save the document to your computer, then print.


Easter at Burnie

Parish priest, Fr Tony Kennedy SM, sends images of the Easter Triduum at Star of the Sea church, Burnie, Tasmania, where he and Fr Fred Kado SM presided at ceremonies with high parishioner attendance.


Kawakami painting blessed

A painting by contemporary Japanese artist, Kazuya Kawakami, was blessed at the Japanese Catholic community Mass in Sydney on Easter Sunday. The painting was presented to the Marist Fathers by the Catholics of Nara, Japan, in 2012 in appreciation for the years of ministry of Marists amongst them..

Chaplain Fr Paul Glynn SM presided at the regular monthly Mass while Marist provincial, Fr Bob Barber, blessed the painting which now hangs in Woodbury Hall, Hunters Hill, NSW. It is of a remote Catholic church painted by Kawakami-San when visiting Australia's outback years ago.