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You are here: Home News & Events Articles NAIDOC WEEK: 2 – 9 July
Commemorating the 150th year of St Ignatius' Church

St Ignatius' Church 150th Anniversary Commemorative book2017 marks 150 years since the building of St Ignatius' Church.  Our parish celebrated this occasion with a specially arranged Mass at 9:30am on Sunday 30 July 2017 with Fr Brian F McCoy SJ, Provincial, as main celebrant. Concelebrants included the priests of our parish - Fr Nguyễn Viết Huy SJ, Parish Priest, Fr Tro Tran Van SJ, and Fr Ferruccio Romanin SJ - and many other Jesuit priests.

At the Mass, one of our parishioners, Dr Therese Keogh shared a Reflection: 150th Anniversary of St Ignatius' Church.

It was wonderful to see many parishioners, especially past parishioners, at the Eucharistic Celebration and in the parish hall for morning tea afterwards. Thank you to all who joined us in making it a memorable day.

A photographic book to commemorate this historic church (cover seen at right), launched at the Sesquicentenary Mass, is now available to purchase at a special price for a limited time.

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NAIDOC WEEK: 2 – 9 July PDF Print E-mail

Sunday 02 July 2017: Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Anyone who does not accept his cross is not worthy of me. Anyone who welcomes you, welcomes me.

Jesus carrying His crossNaidoc Week grew out of Indigenous Australians’ concern that they were locked out of the celebration of Australia Day. The event Australia Day commemorated was the landing of Governor Phillip and the raising of the British flag to mark ownership of the land. By Indigenous Australians the day was remembered as one of loss and dismissal, not an occasion for a celebration of what they and the descendents of the settlers had in common.

Naidoc Week reflects a desire to celebrate the gift that the settlers could have found and respected in Indigenous Australians and their culture had they looked. It is a celebrations of memories and traditions that go far further back than 1788. Like Australia Day it is also an opportunity to weigh what both settlers and the first Australians have done and suffered over the two centuries since settlement. The theme of the week is ‘Our Languages matter’. It also poses questions about the way in which we conceive our identity as a nation. To say that our languages matter implies that in Australia we communicate in many languages. English is the language of business and public life, but many other languages, both Indigenous and introduced, are the primary languages of groups of Australians.

Language is much more than a means of communication. It is an emblem of our tribe, marking out those who are our near relatives and those who are strangers. Language shapes how we interact with others. To say that our languages matter implies that English does not have absolute precedence over other languages.

Language is also the medium through which culture is transmitted. Culture includes our relationship with our own history, the customs and symbols of our parents, and the songs and stories that make up our heritage. Naidoc Week celebrates Indigenous lives and culture. But, like those lives and that culture, its message is a timely gift to all Australians. At this time when public discourse is impoverished, national identity is often defined in terms that narrow, exclude and demean minorities. For us at Jesuit Social Services that is of great concern. We work with vulnerable young people, including many Indigenous people. Some have been caught in the justice system. Our task is to encourage them to connect with society at a time when many people want to exclude them. An Australia that is seen as multilingual, while sharing English as its common language, and is also seen as multicultural and multireligious, while sharing a common national identity, is a richer and more enduring nation than one in which there is one language, one religion and one culture that exclude others. Ultimately languages matter because people matter. In Australia Indigenous languages and people have both been treated for far too long as if they don’t matter. Naidoc Week calls for a better way.

Fr Andrew Hamilton SJ

Aboriginal Catholic Ministry Victoria NAIDOC Mass

Sunday 09 July 2017, 11:00am - 12:00pm

St Francis Church, 326 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne

Aboriginal Catholic Ministry Victoria hosts an Aboriginal Mass every year celebrating our Catholic faith and Aboriginal Spirituality.  The Mass is followed by light refreshments and an Aboriginal art exhibition held in the pastoral rooms beside the church.  The exhibition will run from the 03 July until the 26 July 2017.

Ph: (03) 9926 5751 for catering purposes

Contact: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , Aboriginal Catholic Ministry Victoria