March 2015

This page:   Signs of Easter  |  Fr Chris' Nazareth newsletter  |  Be a good egg  |  Aboriginal memorial for Fr Bernie Ryan |  Vanuatu appeal  |  Photos for Christchurch gathering  | Hail, Glorious St Patrick  |  In touch with the Founder  |  Fr Hoppy's Lenten letter from Bolivia  |  Latest Provincial Circular  |  Ascent to Fourvière  |  Social Justice diary for March  |  Combined Councils meet in Wellington  | Save this date  |  Woolwich girls rock at the Rocks  |  Year of Consecrated Life resource  |  February statistics  |  Latest Euroinfo
The Colin web site ( is hosted from Australia
Click here for the latest news and photo-of-the-week

Signs of Easter

Advertising 'The first-ever Easter Show', signs near the Mary Street roundabout, Hunters Hill, alert parishioners and local people to the events of Holy Week.

Good Friday will again be marked by the inter-Church Way of the Cross, beginning at the Anglican Church of St Mark's and culminating in the grounds of Villa Maria monastery.

[Mar 29]


Fr Chris' Nazareth newsletter

From the Marist mission in Senegal, Africa, Fr Christian Abongbung SM, sends his first newsletter for 2015.

Cameroonian Marist and graduate of Pacific Regional Seminary, Suva, Fr Chris is coordinator of the Nazareth Centre for street kids in Dakar, Senegal. The centre conducts a program for social and family reintegration of street children

Click here for the Nazareth newsletter

[Mar 28]


Be a good egg

'Stop the Traffik' reports:  Much of the chocolate that finds its way into our shops and homes is made with cocoa from Cote d'Ivoire plantations that use trafficked children. They are kidnapped or their families are tricked, forced to work in the cocoa plantations from an early age, for long hours, in dangerous working conditions, without any possibility of attending school.

A global movement has begun to change this. The movement tackles poverty and empowers producers who are doing the right thing. Farmers operating with Fairtrade Certification, Rainforest Alliance or UTZ Certified are engaging in good labour practices. Join the movement this Easter.

Choose certified Traffik-Free chocolate, support the farmers and STOP THE TRAFFIK. Click here for 'Good Egg Guide'  |  'Stop the Traffik' web site

[Mar 27]


Aboriginal memorials for Fr Bernie Ryan

The indigenous communities of Kempsey, Macksville and Bowraville in NSW's northern rivers district gathered on Mar 21 and 22 to remember their beloved spiritual father, Fr Bernie Ryan SM.

Fr Paul Sullivan presided at the simple ceremonies. Fr Bernie's sister, Lorna Leydon (Wellington NZ) and nephew, Mark Leydon, attended, along with Marist provincial, Fr Bob Barber, and Br Mika Cilicewa, and members of the Catholic Aboriginal Ministry of the Lismore Diocese.

[Mar 23]

Above: Memorial service in the Catholic church at Bowraville  |  Br Mika Cilicewa SM, former co-worker with Fr Bernie Ryan
Below: Memories of Fr Bernie during the visit to Macksville in 2013 of Superior-General, Fr John Hannan

Vanuatu appeal

Director of the Marist Mission Centre, Fr Kevin Stewart SM, has sent out an urgent call for donations in response to the dramatic damage of Cyclone Pam.

Special appeals will be made in Marist parishes in coming days.

Click here

[Mar 17]


Photos for Christchurch gathering

Kiwi Marist, Fr Rod Milne, visited Villa Maria monastery on Mar 17 to collect photo enlargements of the recent funeral of Fr Bernard Ryan in Sydney.

A memorial evening will be held soon in the Marist parish of Addington, Christchurch, NZ, to honour the much loved fellow New Zealander and former Superior-General.

Photographs of the Requiem and burial will adorn the walls of the parish hall enabling local Marists and other friends to share in the farewell moments for their beloved Fr Bern.

[Mar 17]


Hail, Glorious Saint Patrick!

On Mar 17 Sydney-based Marists at Hunters Hill (Villa Maria and Montbel communities) and The Rocks (St Patrick's) celebrated the Solemnity of St Patrick with as much solemnity as could be mustered.

Irish-stew, leprechauns, Baileys, Irish coffee and shamrocks featured in the celebrations. Pick the communities....

[Mar 17]


In touch with the Founder

Fr Tony Kennedy reports from Marist College, Suva, on the seminary community's planning for the Year of Consecrated Life and the distribution of personalised multi-language packs of material on Marist Founder, Jean-Claude Colin.

'We had a brainstorming session about ways we could mark the year in our community... One of the things for the year was to get in touch with our founder and then I gave out the Colin packs.'

The resource packs contain material in Fijian, Tongan, Samoan, PNG Pidgin, Bislama, Solomon Islands Pijin, French and English, reflecting the range of nationalities represented amongst the Oceania Province students.

[Mar 16]


Fr Hoppy's Lenten letter from Bolivia

Australian Marist missionary, Fr John ['Hoppy') Hopkinson SM, sends this update from his mission in Bolivia: click here.

He is pictured, below, with the Marist Team at Tarija and during a presentation to leaders of Basic Christian Communities.

[Mar 12]


Latest Provincial Circular

Available at 'Members only' log-in (Home Page)

[Mar 11]


Ascent to Fourvière

Jul 23, 2016, marks the bicentenary of the pledge by pioneer Marist aspirants to form the Society of Mary at the shrine of Our Lady at Fourvière, Lyons, France.

Authored by Marist writers, Frs Justin Taylor and François Drouilly, 'Ascent to Fourvière' is now being circulated to members of the Marist family worldwide.

The 40-page booklet combines a succinct history of the events surrounding the 1816 pledge with a reflection for use by today's Marists preparing for the bicentenary celebrations next year.

[Mar 10]

  Pictured: Fr Justin Taylor / Fr François Drouilly | Fourvière today

Social Justice diary for March

Anniversaries include assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero (24th) and the beginning of the Sisters of St Joseph at Penola, SA (19th).

Go to Social Justice & Marist diary

[Mar 06]


Pictured, back row: Frs David Kennerley (NZ provincial) and Paul Martin (NZ); middle: Frs Gerard Hall (Aust), Bob Barber (Australian provincial), Larry Duffy (Vicar-General), Merv Duffy (NZ) and Paul Mahony (Aust); front: Frs Chris Martin and Neil Vaney (NZ), Peter McMurrich and Kevin Stewart (Aust).

Combined Councils meet in Wellington

The Marist Provincial Councils of Australia and New Zealand are meeting for two days (Mar 04-05) in Wellington, NZ.

Joined by Vicar-General of the Society of Mary, Fr Larry Duffy SM, the councils are reviewing matters of international configuration and collaboration. Fr Larry is in the midst of visitation of the Oceania Marist Province.

[Mar 04]


Save this date

Sat, Aug 29, 2015, 'Both ends of the Gun: Aboriginal Australians at War' , hosted by the combined Marist Family Justice & Peace network.

At Santa Sabina College, 90 The Boulevarde, Strathfield, NSW.

[Mar 04]


Woolwich girls rock at the Rocks

A social media comment on Sunday, Mar 01, remarked: 'Going to St Patrick's 6 pm Mass at Church Hill. Marist Sisters girls to lead some awesome Christian rock music today.'

Sure enough, the historic city-centre church in Sydney's 'Rocks ' rocked, thanks to the students of Marist Sisters College, Woolwich, NSW.

St Patrick's has a long tradition of music in the liturgy for most of its twelve weekend Masses.

[Mar 02]

  Left: St Patrick's by night / Marist College Woowlich by day  

Year of Consecrated Life resource

From the Society of Mary's headquarters in Rome comes a handy booklet to help with personal and community reflections on the Year of Consecrated Life proclaimed recently by Pope Francis.

Click here

[Mar 01]


Strange surges in February

Extraordinary peaks in daily visits marked this web site's February experience.

Following a January mean of 628 visits daily, February's average jumped to 982, sixteen days receiving more than 1,000 visits. The surge peaked on Feb 06 with 1,345 visits.

The last few days of the month saw a more normal average daily visit count of approx 700. Phew!

[Mar 01]


Latest Euroinfo

February issue of Marist Europen bulletin now available. Click here.

[Mar 01]