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.


22nd 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: Isaiah 63:16-17; 64:1. 3-8  Second: Corinthians 1:3-9

Gospel:   Mark 13:33-37

Sr Kate McGrath RSM

Donald Anderson
Bernadette Black
Marlene Bombardieri
Sheila Bruhn
Dila Bulic
John Carruthers
Domenica Casella
James Casella
Sr M Celine
Elizabeth Clark
Val Crameri
Terence Dickson
Michael Elliott
Len Fan
Leslie Frawley
Ivy Goodwin
John F Kennedy
John McDowell
Patrick McVeigh
Toni McVeigh
Irene Menzel
Hazel Muriel Moloney
Chako Moonyamadeal
Thomas Moore
William Morris
Bess Newton
Margaret Roberts
Ronald Rosser
James (Jimmy) Simpson
Mary Smith
Walter Sztozko
Ronald Twomey
Daisy Watson
Kevin Woof
Ludovicus Wynen
Provisions for Regional Victoria from
Monday 23rd November 2020

Ceremonies and Religious Gatherings
Cathedral Parish Update

We are hoping that this weekend that there will be an announcement that will further ease the coronavirus restrictions that may then enable us to have up to 100 people gathering in the Cathedral in groups of 20. Weekday Mass (Monday – Friday) will continue to be celebrated at 10.00am, and it will be dependent on the announcements this weekend how many people may gather. For these Masses bookings will not be required, but those who attend will be asked to provide their contact details.

If our numbers increase to up to 100 people from Monday, they will be seated in the pews in the body of the Cathedral in clearly marked places with one person in each pew (except if they are from the same household). Please be respectful of others who may be guiding this process of welcoming, registering and ushering you in the Cathedral. Entrance to the Cathedral will continue to be via the south transept door where tables will be set up for you to provide your contact details.

For the weekend Masses on the first Sunday of Advent (November 28th – 29th), provided we are able to have up to 100 people gather for Mass, we will celebrate Masses at the usual summer times 6.30pm (Saturday Vigil), 8.00am, 10.30am and 5.00pm on Sunday.

Teams of parishioners will be required for each of these Masses to assist with the welcoming, registration and ushering of parishioners to Mass and cleaning afterwards. We are looking for volunteers to join these teams for each Mass and ask that you contact the Parish office if you are willing to join one of these teams.

Similarly, the Cathedral is cleaned each week by dedicated teams of hard-working parishioners. With our heightened awareness of cleaning and sanitising all of our environments, we are also inviting more to volunteer for this service. Please contact the Parish Office for further details. To ensure that we have a Covid safe environment and adhere to our Covid safe plan, we will need many more to become involved.

The Cathedral will open for Morning and Evening Prayer each weekday (Monday – Friday), 8.00am and 6.00pm for thirty minutes only. The usual requirement of providing contact details will be required as well as cleaning afterwards.

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

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

This weekend we welcome to our Parish through the
Sacrament of Baptism:

Stephen Edmund Harrison, son of Paul & Crystal
“The Church gives the faith to your children through Baptism and you have the task to make it grow…” Pope Francis.

May Stephen grow in faith with the support of their families and our Catholic Community

Thanksgiving Note from Fr Shaiju

"Always be thankful"(Col:3:17).

Gratitude is one of the greatest Christian virtues.

I hope you all came to know from the newsletter that I am moving to Mildura by 27th of November 2020. 

As I move from Ballarat my heart is filled with gratitude towards St Patrick's Cathedral Catholic community for all the love and concern you have shown to me. Fr Justin is a great man to start with, his hard working nature, consistency in character, his love for the church and people are really inspiring. Thanks Father for all that you had been to me.

The office staff Anita and Kerrie helped me in many ways, thanks for them too.

Special thanks to different committees who helped me in liturgical matters and I appreciate very much their concern and cooperation. Covid19 was a hard time for every one of us and I could not meet many of you in person but you were in my prayers always.

Thanks for everything and expect my prayers and support in my coming years of priestly ministry in Ballarat Diocese.  
Celebrating the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA)
This Sunday at the 5.00pm Mass we will celebrate the fill Christian initiation of Ebonee Rogan and Anthea Stanton who will be baptised, confirmed and celebrate their first communion. We will also receive Erin Macauley into the Catholic Church, then celebrate her Confirmation and first communion. Their journey began formally in mid 2019 and our Parish welcomes them into our faith community and thanks their sponsors, catechists and RCIA team members.

A reflection from each of these three women follows.

Ebonee Rogan
"My journey in the RCIA began when I decided that I wanted to share the same faith as my husband & three children. It’s been a long (thanks to COVID) & enlightening experience, where I have learnt many things about myself and the Catholic faith. The sense of community I have felt from being part of the Church has been heart-warming. The core values of our faith give us such a rich compass to try and replicate in our own lives.  I’d like to thank all who have guided us on this part of our journey, and I look forward to being a member of our Parish".

Anthea Stanton
“Know, I am praying for you Anthea.” was my entry into Catholicism. Katelin a ‘cradle Catholic’ said those words to me when my family was in throws of a personal tragedy. 5 years later I entered the RCIA at St Patrick’s, for which I am grateful to all who gave their time and contributed to my journey.  We all fall short of the glory of God, however there is a merciful element of Catholicism that secular society cannot offer. The New Testament continually gives us the sense of hearing complements. Faith comes not from smelling, seeing or touching, but hearing. And I have not heard more powerful words than “I absolve you”.
Broadly speaking we need a metaphysic narrative to hold us together, both personally and as a community. And I would argue, that needs to be predicated on something that is transcend and absolute, which I have experienced through the beautiful and antique faith of Catholicism.  I look forward to being an active member of our community. Do not hesitate to approach me and share your faith journey. I have much to learn and this is just the beginning.”

Erin Macaulay
"My RCIA journey started when I gave birth to our son, Angus. Having being raised with strong Christian values and attending a Catholic school, I still had many gaps in my knowledge of what it meant to be ‘Catholic’. All I knew was that I wanted my husband and I to raise our little boy in a similar way, and part of that was Christening him in the Catholic Church. Throughout the journey that has been Alpha and RCIA, I have had the pleasure of meeting some wonderful people and have learnt so much about myself and the Catholic faith. I am so excited to now be able to welcome Angus into the St Patricks’ community and best guide him in his spiritual journey one day too".
Time to re-join as a worshipping community

Why we need to go back to Mass on Sunday

In a recent opinion piece published by La Croix International, Chris Sidoti posed some tough questions about the current state of parish life in the Catholic Church, at least in Australia.

"Will I go back to Mass? Can I go back to Mass?" he asked.

He asked that in the context of a number of painful failures of the Church, its poor liturgical language, the shame of the abuse crisis, the issue of all male clergy and the inadequate recognition of women.

After faithfully attending Mass each week for nearly 70 years, the past several months of being deprived of the Eucharistic Sacrament has undoubtedly been a major personal and community loss.

Catholics feel the loss deeply. The innate need to worship our God, to join in communion with other members of the People of God and to share in the one loaf gifted to us at the Last Supper was seriously interrupted.
After decades of weekly or even more frequent participation in the Eucharistic assembly, the inability to celebrate Mass has been much more than a mere suspension of a well-established routine.

Read this article by Justin Stanwix here
Catholic organisations praise
Victoria's $5.3bn commitment

The St Vincent de Paul Society and Jesuit Social Services have applauded the Victorian Government for its commitment of $5.3 billion to build more than 12,000 public housing dwellings over the next four years.

St Vincent de Paul Society National president Claire Victory said she welcomed the “Victorian Government’s leadership on the issue” and encouraged other states and territories to follow suit.

Ms Victory said social housing was a shared responsibility across state and territory governments and the Commonwealth Government.

“In addition to individual commitment from the states and territories, I repeat the call for the federal Government to establish a social housing fund of $10 billion to augment the efforts of the states and territories to address the chronic shortage of safe, affordable housing in Australia,” Ms Victory said.

“There’s a shortfall of over 400,000 dwellings nationally. We need a strategic, consistent and long-term approach to tackling housing stress and homelessness in Australia.

Jesuit Social Services chief Julie Edwards said the projects “will ensure that thousands of Victorians have a safe and secure place to call home”.

“Jesuit Social Services works with many vulnerable people – including people with mental health and substance abuse problems, newly-arrived refugees, people exiting prison and people leaving out-of-home-care services – who rely on public or community housing,” Ms Edwards said.

"We see the impact that insecure, unstable or unsafe housing can have on a person's ability to lead a healthy, fulfilling and productive life, particularly for people who already experience complex forms of disadvantage.  Adequate housing is a fundamental human right and this investment means more Victorians will have a place to call home."

Read the St Vincent de Paul media release here

During liturgical lockdown Catholics want
"Eucharist on demand"

Theologian questions wisdom of offering communion outside of Mass
"The Magisterium insists that the most perfect participation in the Eucharist takes place during Mass," explains Father Cédric Burgun.

Public religious services remain suspended or strictly curtailed in a number of countries around the world in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

And for Catholics in many European countries -- including Ireland, England and France -- that means not being able to gather together for Mass on Sunday.

In light of this, some church goers have asked their parish priests to make Holy Communion available outside the celebration of Mass.

But most Catholic theologians question the wisdom of this practice.

La Croix's Héloïse de Neuville took up the issue with Father Cédric Burgun.

He's director of the Carmelite Seminary in Paris and vice-dean of the Faculty of Canon Law at the Institut Catholique.

La Croix: Some of the faithful are asking for the sacrament of the Eucharist on an individual basis, outside of Mass. In what context can this be done?

Father Cédric Burgun: Canon law justifies the distribution of the sacraments outside of Mass for "a just motive" or "a serious cause" that would prevent them from being received during a celebration. This is interesting because it brings us back to the notion of discernment of the faithful and of the pastor on what is the just occasion to give and receive this sacrament in these extraordinary circumstances.

When canon law itself has not done so, we need to be careful to set rules that are neither too strict nor too general on this practice.

From this point of view, those who advocate the distribution of communion on an individual basis, and those who strongly oppose it by throwing anathemas in their faces, are a bit distressing.

Why is the Mass the most appropriate time to receive the Eucharist?

The Magisterium insists that the most perfect participation in the Eucharist takes place during Mass. There are two reasons for this.

First of all, there is a question of meaning. The Mass, by its unfolding and its liturgy, allows for a better understanding of the sacrifice of the cross, perpetuated in the Eucharist, especially thanks to the penitential liturgy and the Liturgy of the Word. All this prepares us and leads us towards the mystery of the cross and resurrection.

The second reason is the community aspect of the Eucharist. The celebration of the sacraments is, by its nature, communitarian; one never celebrates alone.

On the theological level, what questions are raised by the reception of the sacrament of the Eucharist outside of Mass?

It can lead to misunderstanding and the formation of false opinions about what the Eucharist is. On the one hand, the risk would be to devalue the importance of the unity of the overall celebration, in which the Eucharist is accomplished through the Liturgy of the Word, the homily, the Eucharistic Prayer itself, and finally its communal aspect.

On the other hand, this individual distribution, isolated from the Mass, can lead to undermining the spiritual preparation that the reception of this sacrament requires: the penitential process, Eucharistic fasting, confession in case of grave sin, etc.

These conditions remain for receiving the Eucharist, even if the mode of reception changes.

Above all, I do not want to judge my brother priests in the pastoral practices they implement, but it is legitimate to question the image we give of the Eucharist by invoking this Sunday distribution outside of Mass.

On Pilgrimage with Mary Ward App

In our present time of instant communication and ease of travel, the story of Mary Ward and her life-long desire to seek and know God’s will, can seem like a struggle way beyond human resilience.

That an English woman, in Post-Reformation England, could believe the Catholic Church would approve a plan for religious women to be free from the jurisdiction of the Diocesan Bishop but governed by one of their own, free from the obligations of the cloister, focused on the mission of educating girls in a similar way to boys, and flexible enough to respond to the needs identified around them, seems outrageous, shocking and misguided.  This is what Mary Ward came to understand as God’s will for her.

With the young women inspired to join her, she crossed the English Channel many times, traversed the Alps of Europe on foot three times to seek approval for her congregation and all along the way, she established houses and schools where she was welcomed and supported.  And while she died under the shadow of the Inquisition … her congregation can be found today in over 40 countries, with more than 200 Mary Ward schools, colleges and informal education facilities and thousands of women and men proudly associated with her charism and spirituality.

More information on the Pilgrimage with Mary Ward App can be found here.


Thank you for contributing to the Cathedral collections this week:

Envelopes: $ 835.00
Presbytery:  $ 276.00

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 Christ the King
“It has long been a common custom to give to Christ the metaphorical title of King.” These are the words of Pope Pius XI who established this feast between two world wars in the hope of counteracting the growing secularism “in public affairs and politics” and finding a way towards global peace. Peace would never be achieved, wrote Pope Pius XI, until and unless individuals and nations accept the “rule of our Saviour”.

In some ways, hope for the global reign of the Prince of Peace seems more remote than ever. The challenge of the so-called Islamic State in the Middle East, of Boko Haram in Africa and of the White Supremacist Movement in the United States have marked new low points in more than a century of violent and ongoing conflict which has claimed the lives of some 180 million people across the globe. COVID-19 has underscored the vulnerability to violence of those rendered poor by the prevailing inequitable economic system. From a Christian perspective, the world needs the sort of leadership that Jesus of Nazareth advocated in first century Palestine, the kind of leadership that Pope Francis is offering to our world.

The gospel for today provides a blueprint for Christian living in general and for leadership in particular. Matthew presents Jesus as both shepherd and sheep: as judge and king on the one hand and as a suffering human (“the least”) on the other. Works of mercy are the measure of justice or righteousness. Those who feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, welcome the stranger, and set the prisoners free are “the righteous/the sheep” who will inherit God’s empire or kin-dom and have life. Those who fail in these respects are the unrighteous/the goats who fail to recognise the presence of the shepherd/king in the suffering of “the least”. Why sheep and goats? While goats grazed with the sheep, they were never imaged as God’s people, somewhat unfairly, I suggest. “Sheep”, on the other hand, is a frequent biblical designation for the people of God’s fold.

This gospel story is replete with mixed metaphors. It is the gospel source of the spiritual and corporal works of mercy that have informed the Christian way of life for centuries. It focusses on suffering humanity. In proclaiming an eighth work of mercy, care for our common home, Pope Francis has asked us to expand our horizons and to extend our concern to the suffering of the whole Earth community, human and other-than-human.

The Feast of Christ the King brings the church year to a close. It invites us to consider ways to achieve the things that make for peace. If we wish God’s reign of peace to be realised on planet Earth, then we might heed the invitation of Pope Francis to care for our common home: to engage in “grateful contemplation of God’s world” on the one hand and in daily gestures that “break with the logic of violence, exploitation and selfishness” on the other.

Veronica Lawson RSM

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