Welcome to the Cathedral Parish e-News for this weekend.
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St Patrick's Cathedral, Ballarat

Communities of Alfredton, Ballarat, Cardigan
Lake Gardens, Lake Wendouree, Lucas, Newington


St Patrick's Cathedral Parish acknowledges that the Aboriginal people of Australia are our first nation peoples and the traditional owners and custodians of this land.

We are a child safe Parish following the Child Safe Standards outlined by the Victorian Government, implementing procedures and standards as directed by the Professional Standards Office of the Catholic Diocese of Ballarat.


15th NOVEMBER, 2020

3 Lyons St Sth Ballarat

Parish Office hours:
Tuesday - Friday
10.00am - 5.00pm

On Mondays the Parish Office is closed.

On weekends and after regular office hours,
the phone will be transferred to the on call priest
so that the Hospitals, Aged Care facilities, Funeral Directors
or others seeking the services of a priest may be responded to.

Follow us on Facebook:

Mass in the Chapel at St John of God Hospital is live streamed daily at 11.30am.  After Mass has been celebrated it is posted onto the Cathedral website.


Readings for this week: Thirty Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

First:  Proverbs 31:10-14, 19-20, 30-31   Second: Thessalonians 5:1-6

Gospel: Matthew 25:14-30

Readings for next week:  Feast of Christ the King

First: Ezekiel 34:11-12. 15-17  Second: Corinthians 15:20-26. 28

Gospel:   Matthew 25:31-46

Margaret Briody, Peter Brody, Richie Garland, Kevin Reed


Mary Allport
Gladys Barton
Mollie Benson
Bruce Clifton
Lesley Driscoll
Joyce Erickson
G.D. Francis
Bob Harty
Mary Mahar
Reginald Monagle
Francis Murphy
Andrew O'Brien
June O'Brien
Andrew Patterson
John Raul
Nancy Rozycki
Nikolai Sahnycz
James Shanahan
William Simmons
Johannes Spee
Christopher Storey
Valma Thompson
Johannes van de Braak
Ted Walker
Donald Warden
Lorna Warsthorn
Rebecca Weston
Mattea Zelencich

Provisions for Regional Victoria from Wednesday, October 28th 2020

Ceremonies and Religious Gatherings

Indoor religious gatherings:
Allowed for up to 20 people, plus one faith leader;
Strict requirements to be contained in a COVIDSafe Plan;
can only have one gathering at a time

Up to 10 people outdoors, including couple and two witnesses.
Celebrant and one photographer excluded from cap.

Indoors - up to 20 people;
Outdoors - up to 50 people. 
Infants under 12 months and people to conduct funeral not included in the cap.

At all gatherings contact details are to be collected, contact surfaces sanitised, social distancing observed, hand sanitiser provided and face masks must be worn.
Cathedral Parish Update

We are looking forward to a further easing of coronavirus restrictions from Monday November 23rd. It is anticipated that we will be able to have up to 100 people gathering in the Cathedral in groups of 20. This will enable 100 people to celebrate Mass together, spread throughout the Cathedral. For the 10.00am weekday Masses (Monday – Saturday), bookings will not be required but those who attend will be asked to provide their contact details. We will provide more information regarding the Sunday Masses next week. In anticipation of this, we will not be requiring registration for the 10am weekday Masses this coming week (with a limit of 20).

The Parish liturgy group (Susan Crowe, Kay Curran, Kathleen Hayes, Helen Lee, Therese O’Loughlin, Les Stewart and Deneise Walsh) will meet with Fr Justin this coming week to plan for the Advent Season which will be simpler than usual in every way . Opportunities for Advent prayer will also be planned including Morning and Evening Prayer of the Church, Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick and Seniors Mass. We will also be advised by the St Vincent de Paul Conference as to how the annual advent giving can occur this year in place of the usual giving tree.

Baptisms are now being scheduled and families have been booking from Sunday November 22nd. Some of those in the RCIA who have been waiting for their full Christian Initiation since before Easter will celebrate at the 5pm Mass next Sunday on the Feast of Christ the King. The families who have prepared for the Rite of Christian Initiation of their children will also be celebrating their Christian initiation in the coming weeks. Similarly, we have almost 100 children who completed their preparation for their first celebration of the sacrament of Reconciliation in Lent. These children and their parents will be contacted in the coming week.

Our three Parish Primary Schools are preparing for end of year celebrations and Year Six graduations that will all be different from previous years. They will not be coming to Cathedral for these celebrations, but Fr Justin will be celebrating these events on site with each school community. Damascus, Loreto and St Pat’s Colleges have not been able to gather in the Cathedral for their annual Year 12 graduation Masses, but have each adjusted their usual practices. We pray for these graduating Year 12 students as they come to the end of their schooling.

While some planning for Christmas can commence, much remains unknown as to how we will be able to celebrate. We will await further announcements.

To see the Cathedral Parish COVIDSafe Plan, click here.
Celebrating the transfer of the
Cathedral Parish Primary Schools to the
Diocese of Ballarat Catholic Education Limited (DOBCEL)
Tuesday November 10th 2020

We celebrate and welcome the transformative dream which will take our diocesan education community in new directions under the guidance of the Spirit.

The Mass was attended by the student leaders of our three Parish Primary Schools,  the Principals (Chris Kavanagh, Mark Hogbin and Simon Duffy) and Deputy Principals (Danielle Brennan, Cathy Whelan, Trish Caldow), a parent representative, Tracey O'Neill (Chair of DOBCEL), Tom Sexton (CEO) and Ashley Wiseman (Planning and Development) as well as Leo Styles (Parish Pastoral Council), Michael Kearney (Parish Finance Committee).  

At the conclusion of the Mass the transfer documents were signed.
We celebrated the establishment of St Patrick's Primary School in Drummond St in 1924 and the continuous years of Catholic education.

'To love is to serve.'

We celebrated the establishment of St Thomas More School in Alfredton in 1980 and the continuous years of Catholic education.

'With God first we will live, learn and thrive.'
We celebrated the establishment of Siena Primary School in Lucas in 2017
and the continuous years of Catholic education.

'Through learning we flourish.'
Remembrance Day 2020

Roll of Honour at the War Memorial, Canberra

The current COVID pandemic has been a stark reminder of the dramatic impact that events overseas can have on life in Australia. During the Great War, 1914-1918, over 61,000 Australians were killed serving their nation. A further 155,000 were wounded. All were volunteers. This was a huge human cost, particularly for a nation with a population at that time of just under 5 million people. Total casualties worldwide are believed to number around 20 million people. Such statistics, and the suffering they represent, are almost incomprehensible.

It is the many small memorials that scatter the Australian countryside that perhaps provide some insight into the impact of this tragedy on the social fabric of the nation. The roll of honour on the memorial at Springdale, near Temora, lists the names of ten local men killed during the conflict, including the three Harvey brothers and Private H. Towers who died of wounds on the last day of the war. Each was a life cut short too soon and each represented a deep loss to their community. For many who did return home the trauma of their experiences continued to reverberate long after the guns officially fell silent.

At audience, pope renews commitment to fight abuse

Pope Francis leads his general audience in the library of the Apostolic Palace at the Vatican Nov. 11, 2020. A day after the Vatican released its extensive report on former Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, the pope renewed the Catholic Church's pledge to uproot the scourge of sexual abuse. (CNS photo/Vatican Media)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — After the Vatican released its extensive report on Theodore E. McCarrick, Pope Francis renewed the Catholic Church’s pledge to uproot the scourge of sexual abuse.

Before concluding his weekly general audience Nov. 11, the pope made his first public statement on the release of the report regarding the “painful case” of the former cardinal.

“I renew my closeness to all victims of every form of abuse and the church’s commitment to eradicate this evil,” he said.

After reading his brief comment on the report, the pope bowed his head and closed his eyes in silent prayer.

The 460-page report, which was published by the Vatican Nov. 10, chronicled McCarrick’s rise through the church’s hierarchal ranks despite decades of accusations of sexual abuse and abuse of power.

Euthanasia cutting 'dangerous path' in Australia

Brisbane's Catholic archbishop Mark Coleridge favours a 'care first'
approach of high-quality palliative care.

Ethicists are warning that euthanasia is cutting a “dangerous path” through Australia and New Zealand. Their concerns follow a Labor Party election win in the Australian state of Queensland, and a “yes” vote for euthanasia in New Zealand.
Queensland’s Labor premier, Annastacia Palaczszuk, returned to office after winning a majority of seats on 31 October, has promised to fast-track voluntary assisted dying legislation and allow MPs a conscience vote in state parliament next February.

Sydney Archbishop addresses NSW Parliament
on Religious Freedom

With fellow Christian leaders, Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP addressed state MPs to bat for religious freedom in New South Wales

Addressing a New South Wales parliamentary committee last Friday, Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP defended religious freedom and called for loopholes allowing discrimination against Christians in NSW to be closed. Human rights are not a “zero sum game,” he said.
His comments came as he appeared before the Joint Select Committee on the Anti-Discrimination Amendment (Religious Freedoms and Equality) Bill 2020.
Human rights are not a ‘zero sum game’

The private member’s bill garnered significant public interest, with close to 20,000 submissions made to the inquiry, the overwhelming majority – 13,200 – in favour of the bill.
Read this article by David Ryan in the Sydney Catholic Weekly here

Image above:
Considering religious freedom: Tania Mihailuk MLA, Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP, Mark Latham MLC, Archbishop Haigazoun Najarian, Scott Farlow MLC, Robyn Preston MLA and Gabrielle Upton MLA gather after the parliamentary committee hearing.  Photo: Monica Doumit



Thank you for contributing to the Cathedral collections this week:

Envelopes: $687.00 
Presbytery:  $1,319.70

Due to the cancellation of Masses, should you wish to continue your Planned Giving or contribution to the First Collection, please hand your envelope into the Parish Office, phone Finance Officer Kerrie to receive a Direct Debit form, or put your offering in an envelope into the mailbox near the front door.

Any queries or concerns, please contact the
Parish Office or email Finance Officer Kerrie.


Gospel Reflection
33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
(Matthew 25:14-30)

In answer to my usual greeting, “G’day Muff, what are you up to?” my polymath brother-in-law, David (nicknamed Muff), would invariably reply, “Just contemplating the eternal verities!” The conversation that followed, usually over a glass of wine, would confirm the veracity of his response. Contemplating the eternal verities was a way of life for my brother-in-law until his all too early death 15 years ago.

As the end of the church year approaches, the liturgy presents us with texts that invite us all to consider the big questions of life and death, including the day of reckoning that will inevitably confront each one of us. Matthew’s parable of the talents is part of a discourse about the final realities. It is sandwiched between the parable of the ten lamp-bearers, five of whom are unprepared for the bridegroom, and the end time judgement of the nations (next week’s gospel reading).

The previous story has concluded with the warning: “Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.” This is usually interpreted as a reference to the second coming of Christ. Today’s story continues this motif. It opens: “For it is as if a man going abroad summons his slaves and entrusts his property to them….” Once more, we find slavery taken for granted. Once more, we might take this as a reminder to commit ourselves to the elimination of all power over others. The slaves are entrusted with phenomenal wealth: ten talents, five talents, and one talent respectively. A talent was a measure of weight rather than a coin and one silver talent was the equivalent of 1000 days wages for an ordinary labourer.

The slaves receive no instructions, but later events indicate that the man expects a good return on his wealth. The first two slaves deliver and are invited into the joy of the master, another possible reference to the end time when God will embrace those who are faithful to their mission. The third slave buries his talent and provides a reasonable rationale: the master is a hard man who inspires a fear-ridden response in the slave. The master does not resile from this description. The seemingly unproductive slave loses even what he has and is banished to a place “where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Is the master an image of God? There are some elements in the story that point in this direction. There are other features, such as the concentration of wealth in one person and the treatment of the fearful slave, that inhibit an unequivocally affirmative answer to this question. In face of present inequities even within the most affluent countries, we may find ourselves in sympathy with the third slave insofar as he challenges the violent and exploitative actions of the master. Parables are open to multiple interpretations and the eternal verities cannot be encapsulated in one story or one image. They bear ongoing reflection and call us to responsible action for the sake of planetary life.

Veronica Lawson RSM
St Patrick's Cathedral Parish, Ballarat

- Choir Loft -


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