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.



1st NOVEMBER, 2020

3 Lyons St Sth Ballarat

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

On Mondays the Parish Office is closed.

Please note the Parish Office will be closed on
Tuesday 3rd November
for the Melbourne Cup Public Holiday

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: All Saints

First:   Apocalypse 7:2-4, 9-14  Second: John 3:1-3

Gospel: Matthew 5:1-12

Readings for next week: 

First:  Wisdom 6:12-16   Second: Thessalonians 4:13-18

Gospel: Matthew 25:1-13

Anton Radikovic


Jeffrey Ainley
Murray Byrne
Fred Coppock
Mary Coulter
Lila Gallagher
Carmel Garvey
Grances Harrison
Connor Hubble
Patricia Hughes
Lorna James
Veronica Kelly
William Kennedy
Paul Laffey
Veronica Loader
Claire McGoldrick
Ronald Oakley
Lena Sharp
Valda Simpson
Lilian Taafe
Molly Taffe
Mary Taranto
Peter Walker
Caroline Weickhardt

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

Please note this is slightly different from the last round of restrictions we operated under.

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.
Arrangements for the Cathedral Parish

With the easing of some restrictions,
how will the Cathedral reopen?


We continue to be guided by Government regulations, which means we are still required to limit the number of people who are able to attend Mass, keeping them at the appropriate distance from each other, keeping a record of all who attend (for contact tracing) and ensuring that the necessary cleaning is undertaken.

We again proceed very slowly. 

We are aware that there will be many desiring to join in the celebration of the Eucharist, far more than can be accommodated.  To ensure that we can uphold all of these requirements, we are able to have:


20 people will be able to celebrate Mass each day in the Cathedral at 10.00am. Registering via the Parish Office will still be necessary, where your name and contact details will be required.

The limits will be strictly enforced to enable as many people as possible to have the opportunity to attend, therefore, you will not be able to attend more than once a week.

As we gradually re-open we now offer (also for 20 people):
5.30pm Vigil Mass each Saturday evening
8.00am and 10.00am on Sunday morning
5.00pm Sunday afternoon

Please register your desire to attend via
email or by phoning the Parish Office on 53 312 933 during office hours.

Please note: 
Those attending will be asked to remain in the designated area of the Cathedral for Mass. 
A face mask must be worn at all times whilst visiting the Cathedral (your face mask may be removed when receiving Communion or reading, but must be worn again immediately afterwards).

For the moment these are the only occasions that the Cathedral will be open. 

If all goes well, we will steadily increase the availability of opportunities for prayer and worship in the coming weeks.

We are delighted that so many parishioners are so keen to celebrate Mass. We are wanting to ensure equity and a 'fair go' to enable as many parishioners as possible the opportunity to participate in the celebration of the Eucharist.

Those seeking the Sacrament of Reconciliation are asked to contact the Parish Office to arrange a time.

For the foreseeable future, Fr Justin will continue to celebrate 11.30am Mass each day, live streamed from the Chapel at St John of God Hospital.

To see the Cathedral Parish COVIDSafe Plan, click here.

Clergy Appointments

Following a meeting of the Diocesan Personnel Advisory Board, Bishop Paul has announced the following clergy appointments:

From January 15, 2021, Fr Gerard Prunty, currently Parish Priest of Mortlake and Terang, will become Parish Priest of East Wimmera. I thank Fr Gerry for his years of service to the communities of Mortlake and Terang and pray for blessings upon him as he prepares to join the communities of East Wimmera in the new year.  

From January 15, 2021, Fr Eugene McKinnon, currently Parish Priest of East Wimmera, will become Parish Priest of Linton, Redan and Sebastopol. I thank Fr Eugene for his years of service to the communities of East Wimmera and pray for blessings upon him as he prepares to join the communities of Linton, Redan and Sebastopol in the New Year.

Victorian dioceses partner to bring enhanced

Catholic social services to those in need
Thursday 29 October 2020

The Catholic Bishops of Victoria have today released a joint statement announcing the merging of CatholicCare Melbourne and Gippsland, Centacare Ballarat, and CatholicCare Sandhurst, to form a new entity: CatholicCare Victoria.

'On 1 January 2021, the Archdiocese of Melbourne, the Diocese of Ballarat, the Diocese of Sandhurst and the Diocese of Sale will unite in common mission to advance the ministry of Catholic social services in Victoria,’ the statement says, calling it ‘a landmark endeavour for the Church and for the people of Victoria, particularly the most vulnerable.’

With a combined service of more than 180 years, the individual agencies have responded to needs in their communities with compassion and care.

As CatholicCare Victoria, the combined agencies will have enhanced capabilities to respond to those in need, to sponsor initiatives at the breadth and scale that are most effective, and to advocate about and address the root causes of poverty and injustice, thus fulfilling the Church’s commitment to continue the mission of Jesus Christ by proclaiming God’s love for each person and promoting their fullness of life.

CatholicCare Victoria:

Will draw on a combined 184 years of experience in delivering excellence in a broad range of child, family and community services. It also consolidates leadership and expertise in the areas of school counselling, pastoral services, social housing, employment and advocacy services.

Will operate from 20 office locations and a further 107 delivery sites, including offices in Melbourne, Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong and Shepparton and a footprint that extends to all corners of Victoria, from Mildura to Warrnambool, and Wodonga to Traralgon.

Will have a workforce of 500 staff and 200+ volunteers working together, inspired by Catholic Social Teaching, in a shared mission for a stronger, more inclusive society - where everyone can reach their potential and live life to the full.

Will support 50,000 people each year: children, individuals and families experiencing difficulty or disadvantage, people in prisons, newly arrived refugees and asylum seekers, people with disabilities, people who are sick, unemployed, or who are homeless.

Christopher Lamb discusses the Pope’s comments in support of
civil unions for gay couples

Pope Francis, pictured here leading an international prayer for peace in Rome, has spoken out in support of civil unions.

Pope Francis has come out in support of civil partnerships for LGBT Catholics in a new award-winning documentary. The Pope, interviewed in the film by its director Evgeny Afineevsky, said LGBT people should be made welcome in the Catholic Church.

Christopher Lamb has analysed the significance of his remarks in a comment column for The Tablet. Here, he discusses further why Pope Francis' support for civil unions, the first time he has expressed this support publicly since becoming Pope, is so momentous.

Follow this link to Christopher Lamb’s podcast on the UK Tablet website

Grieving for the Lost Parish -
an institution on its knees.

Some church groups are pressing for a post-pandemic opening up, others, who have already opened up, are sounding a lament as they find it is not business as usual. There are signs of grieving for the parish – an institution on its knees.
World War II changed Western history. The post-war Catholic parish was an institutional wonder. It took off with the baby boom, reached its peak in the 1980s, started its decline in the 1990s and may well be mortally wounded by the COVID epidemic in the 2020s.
The parish of my wartime infancy appeared timeless. It was an identifiable part of the wider culture but, for Catholics, it was a mainstay of life. Baptisms, marriages and funerals happened there. Most Catholics started formal schooling there. That is where you ritualised being a Catholic. Lifelong personal and family friends were made. It had its social oddities such as not eating meat on Friday, the practice of confession and regular Sunday Mass. Adherence was tribal.
Post-war reconstruction for Catholics brought new vitality to the parish. With population growth came new parishes and schools. The baby boom brought not only a large new generation of members but increased vitality and vision to the whole of society. The times – they were a changin.

Eric Hodgens (below) is a Catholic Priest living in retirement. He writes for P&I, International Lo Croix and The Swag.
Healing Initiatives for Survivors of Church Abuse

An ecumenical and interfaith venture - St Peter’s Sacred Space
"In light of the Royal Commission findings here in Australia, the mission and vision of St Peter’s Sacred Space; A Ministry of Healing sponsored by the Anglican Diocese of Willochra, is that it be a quiet, sacred and safe place, where people feel and know the healing presence of God’s love, particularly those people, and survivor groups, who need spiritual healing having been harmed and abused by ministers of religion."

You will find the brochure here and for more information email Rev. Joe Johns at

"Francesco": new documentary on the life and teaching of Pope Francis

The new film entitled "Francesco" tells the story of Jorge Mario Bergoglio and tackles some of the main themes of his pontificate through a series of interviews.

By Vatican News staff writer
The documentary “Francesco”, by director Evgeny Afineevsky, interweaves voices and stories from past and present. It includes exclusive interviews with Pope Francis himself, with Pope emeritus Benedict XVI, with members of the Pope’s family and many others. In it, Afineevsky highlights the challenges of our time, the urgencies that need answering and the mission of the Church in looking to those who suffer injustices.

The Kinéo Prize
The film premieres on Wednesday afternoon at the Rome Film Festival in the Special Events Section. Then on Thursday, in the Vatican Gardens, it will receive the 18th Kinéo Prize. The "Kinéo Movie for Humanity Award" is awarded to those who promote social and humanitarian themes. This year, it will be personally awarded by Rosetta Sannelli, the creator of the award, who  underlined the film's historic value. "Every one of Pope Francis' journeys to various parts of the world," she said, "is documented in Afineevsky's work through images and news footage, and reveals an authentic glimpse into the events of our time."

Safe Church: Commitment, awareness & action for cultural change

2020 Knox Lecture

Thursday 5 November 7pm - 8.30pm online

More details - click here.

In May 2019 Catholic Professional Standards Ltd (CPSL) published the National Catholic Safeguarding Standards. More than 20 church entities have been audited (including the Diocese of Ballarat and St Patrick’s Cathedral Parish) to date to assess the extent to which they are implementing necessary safeguards for children, with audits revealing a strong commitment and dedicated action to create child safe environments. Since late 2019, CPSL has been working to expand the Standards to include protections for adults engaging with Church ministry. This lecture will explore some of the trends and findings emerging from CPSL’s audit work, as well as the directions of the groundbreaking framework for the safeguarding of adults.

Sheree Limbrick is the Chief Executive Officer of Catholic Professional Standards. Sheree commenced as the inaugural CEO of Catholic Professional Standards Ltd (CPSL) in July 2017. With more than 25 years’ experience in child, youth and community services, Sheree is an experienced senior executive, having led organisations in the areas of accreditation and continuous quality improvement, service development and innovation, strategic planning and organisational development. She brings experiences in leading initiatives which have helped organisations listen to and learn from the experiences of children and vulnerable adults.

'Nostra Aetate' anniversary statements
spotlight rising anti-Semitism

In a 2016 file photo, Pope Francis and Rabbi Riccardo Di Segni, the chief rabbi of Rome, hold a codex containing five pages of Jewish biblical commentary at the main synagogue in Rome. (CNS/Paul Haring)

Marking the 55th anniversary of Nostra Aetate, Vatican II's landmark document that redefined the Catholic Church's relationship with other religions, two major Jewish-Christian interfaith partners have exchanged statements hailing the progress between the two religions and calling attention to rising anti-Semitism around the globe.

The two messages were released on Oct. 28 by the heads of the Vatican's Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews and the International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultations.

Cardinal Kurt Koch, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, referred to Nostra Aetate as the " 'Magna Carta' of Catholic-Jewish relations" in his statement, adding that "in pondering the mystery of the Church itself ... the Second Vatican Council was drawn to exploring its relationship with the descendants of Abraham."

"We are inseparably linked in the essential foundation of faith in the God of Israel, and we are united by a rich common spiritual heritage and the legacy of a longstanding shared past. Christianity has its roots in Judaism; the latter constitutes the nucleus of its identity," wrote Koch.



Thank you for contributing to the Cathedral collections this week:

Envelopes: $  375.00    Presbytery: $  360.00

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

Feast of All Saints
(Matthew 5:1-12)

We have become so familiar with the beatitudes that there is a danger of our listening only to the mellifluous flow of language and of failing to attend to the extraordinary present and future reversal that they offer to those who suffer injustice and to those who choose nonviolent ways of addressing it. With pandemic sweeping the globe and affecting the dispossessed quite disproportionately, it is time to listen anew to these opening words of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. Jesus of Nazareth knew in his body the experience of displacement: from Bethlehem to Egypt; from Judaea to Galilee. He shared the experience of Galilean peasant farmers and artisans. His words are grounded in the stories, the music, the poetry, the law and the history of his people. They foreground the qualities of those whom we honour as saints, those who are remembered by name and those who are not.

The mountain setting establishes Jesus as wisdom teacher like Moses of old. God’s favour rests on the poor/the humble/the “grounded”, on the gentle, on those who grieve for the pain of the world, on serious justice seekers, on those who know how to mercy, on the pure or single-minded of heart, on peacemakers, and on those who suffer in the cause of right. The repetition of ‘blessed are…’ (a better translation of the Greek makarioi than ‘happy’) provides multiple links with Israel’s collection of sacred songs, the Psalms. For Israel’s lyricists, God’s favour or blessing is on those whose hope is in God, on those whose delight is in God’s way, on those who take refuge in God, on the guileless in spirit and on those whom God forgives. The content of the beatitudes echoes the voice of Israel’s prophets, especially Isaiah 61. God’s spirit is upon Jesus. He brings the good news of God’s present and future favour or blessing to the destitute and to those who mourn. The distinguishing mark of God’s favoured ones is righteousness or right relationship.

God’s favour or blessing comes in diverse forms: the basileia or empire of the heavens; comfort in the face of grief; the earth as a heritage to be protected; the joy of being mercied; face to face encounter with God; a great reward “in heaven”. If heaven is only a place to be enjoyed in the afterlife, it is little consolation for the desperately poor or for those who are persecuted or misrepresented to know that “the empire of the heavens is theirs” or that their “reward is great in heaven”. “Heaven” is better understood as a way of talking about God or God’s empire of justice and compassion in contrast with the heartless empire of Rome and its modern equivalents. Maybe the most urgent invitation in our present context is to mourn strategically the displacement of so many of earth’s inhabitants who, in these liminal times, long for the blessing of God’s kin-dom in the form of comfort and mercy and a just share in the earth’s resources.

Veronica Lawson RSM

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