From the desk of Father Geoff

WORTH WATCHING!

Fr James Martin SJ has an interesting series on the saints entitled "Who cares about the saints?"  Each episode is a brief (about 10 minutes) overview of the life of a saint, such as St Francis of Assisi, or St Ignatius.  But Fr Martin also profiles the lives of other people who are not yet saints, such as Thomas Merton and Dorothy Day.  So, have a look:

Pope Saint John XXIII:  http://bit.ly/1tuFnsJ
St Francis of Assisi:  http://bit.ly/1lUMFqY
Dorothy Day:  http://bit.ly/1uk4HnR
Thomas Merton:  http://bit.ly/1iTR8Yw
Mother Teresa:  http://bit.ly/1uHZy7n
St Peter:  http://bit.ly/1wfCtdh
St Joan of Arc:  http://bit.ly/1qfZb5w
St Bernadette:  http://bit.ly/1tJjVnI

SPIRITUALITY AND THE DIFFERENT STAGES OF LIFE: ONE SIZE DOESN'T FIT ALL

A talk by Fr ronald Rolheiser OMI.  http://bit.ly/1tJjVUw

A JESUIT AND A FRANCISCAN DISCUSS THE FIRST YEAR OF POPE FRANCIS' PONTIFICATE

Fr James Martin SJ and Fr Richard Rohr OFM discuss the first year of Pope Francis' pontificate.  The discussion lasts for just over 8 minutes.  Click here:  http://bit.ly/ZgoXv2

SISTER HELEN PREJEAN TALKS ABOUT POPE FRANCIS.

Sister Helen is the nun who inspired the movie Dead Man Walking.  In this brief clip she speaks about people who have inspired her, including Pope Francis.  http://bit.ly/1qfZe1e

INTRODUCTION TO THE BIBLE

I’m currently working on a series of introductory talks on the Bible.  They are designed for people who are unfamiliar with the Bible, or for those who would like a refresher course.  

Talk 1 asks the basic question, “Why do we need a sacred text like the Bible?”  To watch Talk 1, click here:  http://bit.ly/1AwZDfM

Talk 2 looks at the importance of story.  Each of us has a story, and our story consists of all the people, places and events that make us the unique individual that we are.  To lose our story is to lose our identity.  To watch Talk 2, click here:  http://bit.ly/1wfCxto

The Christian Bible is made up of the Old and New Testaments.  Talk 3 takes a look at the Old Testament.  What’s in the Old Testament, and what kind of literature are we dealing with?  To watch Talk 3, click here:  http://bit.ly/1xGBiId

Talks 4 and 5 look at the New Testament.  What’s in the New Testament, and who finally decided which books would be included in the New Testament?  To watch Talk 4, click here: http://bit.ly/1wfCyO1      To watch Talk 5, click here:  http://bit.ly/1oqQ0tg

Talk 6 look at the historical background of the biblical story.  There is no text without context, so what is the historical context of the biblical story.  Click here to watch Talk 6:  http://bit.ly/1lUN38X

CHRISTIAN MEDITATION

This talk is an introduction to Christian meditation.  Because we’re constantly thinking about one thing or another, our mind is often likened to a tree full of noisy, playful monkeys.  This form of meditation, using a prayer word or mantra, seeks to still the mind and rest in silence in the presence of God.   Click here if you’d like to learn more about Christian meditation:  http://bit.ly/1rEmC3I

AN INTERVIEW WITH POPE FRANCIS

In August of 2013 Pope Francis was interviewed by Fr Antonio Spadaro, editor in chief of La Civiltà Cattolica, the Italian Jesuit journal.   Fr Spadaro met the pope at the Vatican in the pope’s apartments in the Casa Santa Marta, where he has chosen to live since his election.   To download the interview as a PDF file, click here:  http://thinkingfaith.org/articles/20130919_1.pdf

WHO IS THE POPE?

When Pope Benedict resigned I prepared this talk about the election of a pope.  Who is the pope, how is he elected, and by whom?  If you’d like to learn more, click here:  http://bit.ly/1qKv83u

VIDEO HOMILIES
Click on the image below to view my latest homily, or go to my Youtube channel to view all my homilies and talks:  http://bit.ly/1uk581f

 

Latest News 

FIRST HOLY COMMUNION - ENROL NOW!!

A reminder to parents that First Holy Communion will be celebrated in the parish over two weekends, 16 and 23 November. 

The information evening for parents will be held on Tuesday, October 14, at 7 pm in the Church. 

Children celebrate their first Holy Communion in Grade 3, but they must first have celebrated their first Reconciliation. 

Note: the date for the enrolment evening is two days earlier than the date advertised in the Sacramental Brochure. 

You can download the necessary form for enrolment now. 

To download the form giving you all the dates for the First Holy Communion programme, please click here: First Communion Dates 2014.

To download the enrolment form and the form in which you indicate your preferred lesson time and which of the First Holy Communion Masses you would like to attend, please click here: Enrolment Form & Choice of Lesson & Celebration Time.

Note: Candidates attend two 50 minute lessons over two consecutive weeks. There is a limit of 20 candidates for each lesson group, and 55 candidates for each of the Masses. Applications are processed in order of receipt.

Payment of $30 per candidate can be made by cash, cheque or online. For online payments go to quick links on the website. Click on “Bpoint Secure Payment”; then click on “Make a Payment Now” (bottom of page); under “Biller Code” click on “Sacramental Programs”; Enter YOUR details; enter your child’s full name and Sacrament (Communion) in “Name of Sacrament” box.

THINKING ABOUT BECOMING A CATHOLIC?

The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is the process by which adults who have never been baptised are welcomed into the church.  It also welcomes baptised members of other Christian churches who would like to explore the possibility of becoming a Catholic. 
The RCIA commences this year on Tuesday, October 7 at 7.30 pm.  We will normally meet on Monday evenings, except during school holidays, but Monday, October 6, is a public holiday so we’ll meet on Tuesday for this first time.  Where?  At the parish house (next door to the church).  For further information, please contact our RCIA Co-ordinator, Ruth Connelly, on 0414 851 471.

ROSTERS FOR SENIOR SERVERS, LECTORS, ALTAR SERVERS AND WARDENS 

The latest rosters are now available for download.  Go to "Rosters" on the homepage.

SOME INTERESTING STATISTICS ABOUT THE PARISH FROM THE 2011 NATIONAL CENSUS 

The following information about parish demographics is taken from the 2011 national census.  The total number of people living in the parish is 31,512 (36,119 in 2006). 

The Catholic population of the parish is 9,320 (10,036 in 2006) - i.e. 29.6% of the parish is Catholic (up from 27.8% in 2006).  The percentage of Catholics nationwide is 25.29%. 

Other statistics relating to the parish: No religion: 24.79%;  Anglicans: 17.54%;  Orthodox Christians: 2.7%; Other Christians: 9.8%; Non-Christian religion: 8%; Religion not stated: 7.6%.

The median age of Catholics in this parish is 35 years.  There are 3,214 Catholic families in the parish, and 753 Catholics live alone.  Forty-three per cent of Catholics in the parish have a university degree (up from 38% in 2006), and 66% of Catholic students living in the parish attend a Catholic school (down from 70% in 2006). 

WORKING WITH CHILDREN CHECKS 

All parishioners who have a parish ministry that involves working with children must obtain a Working with Children Check number.  At St Michael’s this means: Catechists, those helping with children’s liturgy, and senior servers.  People who do not have  a WWW check number will not be able to work with children.  Because you work on a volunteer basis, there is no charge.  Paid employees must pay an $80 fee.
Step 1:  This is an online process.  The website that you must go to is: www.newcheck.kids.nsw.gov.au 
Step 2:  Once you have accessed the website, click on “Start Here”.  You go to the “For individuals” section (not “For employers”), and click on “Apply”.  That will open up the online application form which will ask you for your personal details.  It takes about 5 to 10 minutes to complete the form.  The information you give on this form must match your “proof of identity” document (e.g. your driver’s licence).  In the section, “purpose for the check”, make sure you click “volunteer”.
Step 3:  You will receive an application receipt number, beginning with APP.
Step 4:  You must then go to a Motor Registry Office with your APP number and proof of identity (e.g. a NSW driver’s licence).
Step 5:  The parish must then verify that you have received a Working With Children Check Number.  Your check will be valid for five years.
If you have any questions, please contact the parish office.

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Weekend Mass Times

St Michael's Church, Lane Cove
Vigil (Saturday) - 6pm
Sunday - 9:30am & 6pm

Mary Help of Christians Chapel, Greenwich
Sunday - 8am

Saint Ignatius' Chapel, Riverview
Sunday - 7:30am

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