Visit to Australia, November 2012

Terentia and Danielle’s Visit

On 30 October 2012 we left Rome for Australia, travelling via Dubai and Singapore; we arrived in Brisbane on 1st of November for a month of visits to all the different places where our Sisters live and minister: Kedron/Brisbane, Toowoomba, Cunnamulla, Woorabinda, Sydney, Morwell, Coomera, Merrimac, Kingscliff, Aspley and Bellmere. 

We were able to experience and appreciate the length and breadth of the geographical spread of this Governance Circle, as we covered thousands of kilometers by air and land, from north to south and from east to west to go to all of these places.  The hospitality, generosity and kindness of the Sisters in each house was just astounding!

Some of the highlights of our visit were the many celebrations we attended.  Since we arrived for All Souls Day, we had a ceremony at the parish columbarium where the ashes of our deceased Sisters Helen Jeffery and Carmel Beirne were deposed and a liturgy of grateful remembering of all our deceased Sisters at the cemetery.  

That same first weekend we rejoiced with Sisters, family members and friends at the jubilee of Margaret Costello and Patricia Treacy (see photos in the Gallery).  It was also the end of school year; therefore we attended various events with staff and students of Mount Alvernia College, such as the joint concert with the Padua musicians and the end of year thanksgiving liturgy which gathered the 800 students of Mount Alvernia College.

We had two gatherings of the Sisters in Kedron, during which we shared the content of Visitation based on the 2011 Chapter Mandate, namely its theme, the cosmic spirituality and our common thrust for mission.  A guided tour of the new website was also offered.   A similar presentation was given to the Sisters we visited throughout the country and who could not attend these gatherings.

This visit left us with a very positive impression of the MFIC life in Australia.  The prayerful spirit among the Sisters is tangible.  Despite the Sisters’ frailties, there is a youthful enthusiasm that is contagious.  Our Sisters truly live a Franciscan lifestyle and bring a lot of energy to their ministry, creating ever widening circles of communion both within the MFIC Circles and within the neighbourhoods in which they live and serve.    Our charism and mission are alive and well in Australia!

(Enjoy the photos in the Gallery for a glimpse of the life of our Sisters in Australia.)