We gathered at Subiaco Parish on 8 November, commencing with a Communion Service in the Tribune Chapel at St Joseph’s Subiaco, which is adjacent to the property that housed the first Marist College in Perth from 1954 – 1976.
We were very pleased that Jo Hutcheson from Bunbury was able to join us.
We continued in the Upper Room with presentations of certificates to our newest members. We are very proud of our 28 Members of our Local Marist Association, with six pending memberships and a total of 67 who have attended one or more of our gatherings.
Here we viewed a snapshot of our West Australian events, photos and initiatives undertaken in this, our Bicentenary year, which we began on 2 January at the same venue in Subiaco Parish. We came together regularly for our Lenten Prayer Program; gathered at the Brothers’ Residence for formation and for community building, with a BBQ; launched the Bi-Centenary icons as part of the pilgrimage visiting every Marist Ministry and Community around Australia; joined with our local Parish at Floreat for a Family Mass celebrating Mother’s Day; welcomed (local) Brother Harry Prout as he shared his experience of working with the community at West Heidelberg; listened to Dom Mark Patrick Hederman as he delivered the 2017 Marian Lecture Series, Underground Cathedrals; engaged with Sr Margaret Scharf OP, as she shared MARY FOR OUR TIMES: MOTHER, MODEL, MYSTIC, which led beautifully into our formation module - Mary’s Work- Mary’s Way.
Seventeen of us escaped to the Monastic town of New Norcia, where the Marist Brothers began their work in WA in 1913 – 1965. We were led in Retreat by Br Tony Shears across 3 days which tied in beautifully with our formation Module, Deepening our Relationship with God – Prayer, Our Daily Bread. Throughout this year, we also completed our Formation Modules in Growing the Spiritual Family – Marists for the World.
We have grown relationships with St Joseph’s, Northam by visiting them to speak to their staff about the Marist Association and working with them in other aspects of Marist life.
Following this snapshot of our undertakings for 2017, we viewed the presentations from the Marist Association Council of the achievements of 2017 and of the hopes and aspirations for the future. This was a great opportunity to identify with what is happening within the Marist Association in other parts of the country.
In looking forward to future priorities and to growing our Perth Marist Association, our new Youth Chaplain at Newman College, Roger O’Neill, gave us an overview of his plans, hopes and dreams for his work with our youth. Four members of Marist Youth Ministry, Molly, Stefan, Emily and Michael, also joined us and spoke of their work and their plans for the future in the areas of Faith, Ministry and Social. It was a delight to have representatives of our youth join us for this gathering, giving us great hope and confidence for continuing of the charism of St Marcellin into its third century.
John Finneran shared aspirations for building partnerships with Parishes in our area, commencing with a bi monthly Mass at Subiaco Parish for Marist Association Members and Marist Youth Ministry Members to come together in prayer, worship and sharing a meal. We are keen to build a commitment with our local Marist Youth Ministry, collaborating with them through Community Outreach and Association Service, and supporting them in their Faith and Ministry, in particular with their participation in the Mercy Care Unaccompanied Humanitarian Minors Program in South Africa.
John also advised of possible scenarios for Marist Association Retreats with Br Bill Sullivan when he is at Newman College next year. We will look at options of evenings, one day and two to three day retreats to meet the individual needs and availability of our members.
We plan to increase the number of our gatherings next year and to create more opportunities to come together as Marist Association to build community.
Our members were informed of the latest details of the Association’s National Assembly in Adelaide in October and were encouraged to consider attending. We will be asking for expressions of interest and looking at the possibility of subsidizing travel costs for some members.
We look forward to our next local gathering in March 2018 followed by a BBQ at the Brother’s Residence.