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Sunday 17 December 2022

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Dear Parishioners and Friends,

Greetings to you all!

Today we begin the 4th week of our Advent journey: this spiritual journey draws us closer to the celebration of Christmas; God becoming Man. During this four-week journey, the word of God guided us and showed us how different people played their roles in the history of our salvation. Today one such person is St. Joseph, how he plays his part in the plan of salvation.

When we go deeper into the gospel passage, which we just we heard it, will help us to understand the faith journey, the cooperation, and the personal integrity of St. Joseph in the plan of God.

In fact, this Gospel passage could be called a second Annunciation. At the first Annunciation, Mary said “yes” to the angel. Now, Joseph’s “yes” was needed to fulfil the plan of God.

When Joseph learns that Mary was expecting a baby, it really shook him. Legally he could have denounced her publicly. Yet he didn’t. He was ready to let the whole matter drop quietly, as if to give Mary the benefit of the doubt. What a great virtue this is: to think the best of others!

When the angel told Joseph about the plan of God, then Joseph committed his life to the plan of God.  When we go through the books of the gospels, we will find that on three occasions God’s message was given to Joseph through his angels and how he acted upon them. Today’s gospel records the first of the three occasions on which an angel appears to Joseph in a dream.  In each instance, the angel calls Joseph to action and Joseph obeys. 

In this first instance, the angel commands Joseph to take Mary as his wife. 

In Mt 2:13, the angel will tell Joseph to take the mother and child to Egypt to escape Herod’s wrath. 

In Mt 2:19, the angel will, at the death of Herod, tell Joseph to return to Israel.

While talking about the plan of God in each one’s life, this is how Mother Teresa of Calcutta, used to tell her sisters, “Remember the work is not ours and we must not spoil it. This would be a great injustice to God because the work is his.”

St. Teresa of Lisieux once said in her diary that since I was three, I never refused doing God’s will, so when I go to heaven God has to do all that I am asking. This clearly brings to us her total availability to God’s plan.

Friends, God has got definite plans for all of us, so let us discern and co-operate with the plan of God as St. Joseph and Mary did in their lives. And ask for forgiveness for the times we have judged others wrongly. Amen.

Fr. John Sebastian OMI
Rector & Parish Priest

The weekend eBulletin

Click here to download the eBulletin for the Fourth Sunday of Advent Year A.

Parish Morning Tea

Join us on Sunday 18 December for our Christmas parish morning tea, which will be held after the 8am Mass in the Presbytery Carport. All Welcome.

Monthly Senior’s Light Lunch

The last Senior’s Morning Tea for 2022 will be held on Monday 19 December but will be held after the Midday Mass and will be a light lunch in the Parish Centre.

Second Rite of Reconciliation

To celebrate the joy of Christmas, spiritual preparation is also essential. 2nd Rite of Reconciliation will be held on Wednesday 21st December at 7pm, in the Basilica.

Final Monday – Advent Retreat 2022

The final session of the Advent Retreat will be held on Monday 19th December at 6pm at St. Patrick’s Basilica Fremantle Parish Centre.

Christmas Offerings

Usually twice a year you are invited, as a community, to make a special effort to financially support the Priests of the Basilica. Envelopes are available in your planned giving boxes or in the pews of the Church. Your generosity is very much appreciated along with your prayers, encouragement, and blessings.

National Oblate Youth Encounter

It’s been a long time coming, but we are very excited to announce that the National Oblate Youth Encounter will be back in January 2023!

The National Oblate Youth Encounter is an event that brings together young people from around Australia who wish to share their Catholic faith in tandem with the Charism of St Eugene de Mazenod. It will be a great chance to grow in faith and reflect, as well as sharing plenty of fun with other young people. NOYE provides a balance of prayer, workshops, open-forums, liturgy, and community time.

The theme for this year’s camp will be “Created in the Image and Likeness of God…” We invite young people (year 12 – 30 years old) to come and explore this theme whilst sharing the charism of the Oblates.

WHEN: Thurs 5th – Sun 8th January, 2023

WHERE: Mazenod College, Victoria

COST: Free

Registration is now open via our website.

For more info contact: Emma Rice erice@oblates.com.au  0422705230

World Youth Day 2023

From 20th July to 10th August 2023 Oblate Youth Australia will be travelling to Lisbon, Portugal for the World Youth Day Pilgrimage. We are planning to join with Bishop Mark Edwards and the Wagga Diocese on pilgrimage to the Holy Land and Lisbon for WYD before finishing our trip in Aix-En-Provence – the birthplace of our founder St Eugene de Mazenod.

The indicative cost for WYD has been quoted at $9,930 and this includes airfares, accommodation, registration for WYD, tours and most meals. Please note that this is only an indicative quote.

We are now taking expressions of interest for the pilgrimage, and you can find more information & a detailed itinerary by clicking here.

If you have questions or need more info please contact: Emma Rice  erice@oblates.com.au  0422705230

Parish Office Opening Hours Christmas & New Year

Friday 23 December: OPEN 9am to 1pm

Monday 26 December to Monday 2 January 2023: CLOSED

We wish all our Parishioners and their families a very Joyous and Holy Christmas and Safe & Healthy New Year!

Planned Giving

The Planned Giving Programme is an important part of the Parish and assists us to maintain all aspects of the Basilica, Presbytery and Parish Administration Centre. To keep the Parish viable, we must maintain a target of 95% and above each week. Last week giving was 56%. 

Please consider joining the Planned Giving Programme. For more information contact the Parish Office. Thank you!

EFT First Collection Details

BSB: 086 006

A/c No: 56187 5405

Reference: 1st Collection and your name

First Collection supports the Priests.

EFT Second Collection Details

BSB: 066 107

A/c No:  0080 0216

Reference: 2nd Collection and your name

Second Collection supports the Parish.

Regarding Masks

Masks are not mandatory; however, masks are encouraged where physical distancing is not possible if you have cold & flu symptoms, or you wish to safeguard yourself from the COVID-19 virus.

Safeguarding of our children in the Parish

The Archdiocesan Safeguarding Project was started in 2016 by Archbishop Timothy Costello SDB with the aim of providing a safe and secure environment for all its members, leaders and especially children and vulnerable adults. The parish of St Patrick’s Basilica is committed to creating a safe parish. To read more please click here.

Upcoming Events

Sunday 18 December: Christmas Parish Morning Tea.

Wednesday 21 December: 2nd Rite Reconciliation.

Friday 23 December: Handel’s Messiah Concert.

Saturday 24 December: Christmas Eve.

Sunday 25 December: Christmas Day.

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