As the situation in Ukraine continues to escalate, we speak with Vasyl Mykhaylyk, a parishioner of the Ukrainian-Greek Catholic Church in North Melbourne whose family has suffered bombardment in the central Cherkasy region. Fr Marius Talos of Jesuit Mission also provides a glimpse into some of the work happening on the ground with the millions of refugees now seeking shelter.

We also hear from another of the Archdiocese's vocations promotors, Fr Daryl Montecillo, Parish Priest of St Francis Xavier in Corio and St Anthony of Padua in Lara. Fr Daryl shares how he planned on becoming a paramedic before the call of God gently but persistently led him to a different life of service.

Earlier this week, clergy from across the Archdiocese met for an opportunity to pray and reflect on the Archdiocese’s initiative of missionary renewal, Take the Way of the Gospel, and how to approach the realities of a post-COVID world and church.

This year marks the 700th anniversary of the death of Dante. In commemoration of the great Florentine poet and his medieval masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, we spoke with Professor John Kinder of UWA, an expert in Italian studies who describes Dante's epic poem as a true ‘exploration of the human heart’. Fast forward then to the twenty-first century and Fr Nathan Rawlins reflects on a different kind of cultural phenomenon: video games. The Assistant Priest of St Peter's Parish in Epping explores how the moral dilemmas of the digital frontier provide another yet avenue for evangelisation.

This week we also launch the first in a series of pieces celebrating 175 years since the erection of the Diocese of Melbourne. To lead off, we take a look at the Australian gold rush and how it helped put the foundations in place for Catholic Melbourne.

‘Life is changed in the blink of an eye’: Ukrainian Catholic Vasyl Mykhaylyk
Growing up in the Cherkasy region of Ukraine, Vasyl Mykhaylyk and his cousins would always ask their grandfather to share stories from his days of fighting in the Second World War. His grandfather, however, was never forthcoming with war stories, and ‘he would cry and just walk away,’ said Vasyl. There is one story, however, that Vasyl learned through his grandmother, one which has stayed with him ever since.
Fr Daryl Montecillo: Wasting time with God
As a young boy, Fr Daryl Montecillo dreamt of being superman. He wanted to don the blue tights and red cape, flying around the world rescuing people. Realising this wasn’t to be, he later set his sights on becoming a paramedic. But ‘God had a different plan’, according to the 35-year-old parish priest of St Francis Xavier in Corio and St Anthony of Padua in Lara. In this story, Fr Daryl shares how the call of God gently, but persistently led him to the priesthood, and to a life of service and ‘walking with’ others.
‘We’re not the church we were anymore’: Fr Joe Caddy VG
Clergy from across the Archdiocese met on Wednesday 30 March for an opportunity to pray and reflect on the Archdiocese’s initiative of missionary renewal, Take the Way of the Gospel, and how to approach the realities of a post-COVID world and church. Speaking to the clergy gathered, Vicar General Fr Joe Caddy AM said that ‘clergy and laypeople need to discern what this will look like together ... it has to start with prayerful listening to each other. It has to be synodal.’
‘The heart of humanity’: Dante's eternal significance
This year marks the 700th anniversary of the death of Dante, the Florentine poet responsible for one of the world's finest artistic creations: "The Divine Comedy". Professor John Kinder from UWA joins us for a Q&A to discuss Dante's eternal significance.
What would you do for gold? The Goold Rush (Part 1)
What would you do for gold? More to the point, what would you do with gold once you found it? In this first part of our "Goold Rush" series, we take a look at these questions, exploring the influence of the gold rush on Australian life and how it helped Melbourne's first bishop (later archbishop), James Alipius Goold OSA, transform the face of Catholic Melbourne.
Jesuits welcome refugees fleeing Ukraine as crisis escalates
As the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine escalates, Jesuit Mission’s Ukraine Emergency Appeal is contributing to deliver 24/7 vital services on the ground to people in need. With over 10 million civilians displaced, including over 3.6 million refugees fleeing Ukraine, Fr Marius Talos SJ, Director of JRS Romania and partner of Jesuit Mission, is welcoming an intake of refugees like never before. ‘The first need is to welcome these people,’ he said.
Faith mode ON: Video games and the digital frontier
One of the mysterious aspects to people about the lives of priests is what they do in their downtime. The sorts of hobbies that take a priest’s interest can be as varied as you would find in any of the people of God. Golf is the stereotype; the gym is now a more regular option and cooking is one hobby from which it seems everyone benefits. With the millennial generation now in active ministry in many parts of the world, there are a growing number of priests who enjoy video games.
My kids, they think, “how can we live with this happening? How we can hate each other so much and destroy each other’s houses and lives?”’
Vasyl Mykhaylyk
On the war in Ukraine
Upcoming Events
Songs to inspire: Mia Sorella live at St Patrick's Cathedral
Friday 1 April 2022
6.00pm–7.00pm
Friday night concerts at St Patrick's Cathedral are back! Come and listen to celebrated trio Mia Sorella – featuring Wiradjuri soprano Shauntai Batzke, Italian-Australian soprano Michelle Francis Cook and Australian songbird Helen Ling. The trio were part of the 2021 Jesus is Christmas Carols Special and will be back singing...
Lenten Retreat Day for Children
Saturday 2 April 2022
9.00am–10.00am
Children aged 15 and under are invited to a Lenten Retreat Day hosted by St Anthony of Padua Catholic Parish in Melton South and run by the Alliance of the Holy Family.
Lenten Retreat Day for Women
Saturday 2 April 2022
9.00am–4.00pm
St Anthony's and St Bernard's invite you to a day of prayer, friendship and formation. Guest speakers include Sr Rosie Drum MGL ("The Prodigal Son"), Dr Colin Patterson ("The Unjust Steward") and Anna Krohn ("The Ten Bridesmaids"). At this day we will reflect on the place of the Lord in...
Lenten Retreat Day for Men
Saturday 2 April 2022
9.00am–4.00pm
St Anthony's and St Bernard's invite you to a day of prayer, fraternity and formation. We are pleased to welcome Dr Andy Mullins as our presenter for the men's retreat. Dr Andy Mullins is the author of Parenting for Character, and now of Parenting for Faith which will be released...
Lenten Retreat Day for Young Adults
Saturday 2 April 2022
9.00am–4.00pm
St Anthony's and St Bernard's are pleased to provide this day of prayer, friendship and formation for young adults (ages 16-25). We look forward to welcoming Rachel Brennan, Sr Mary Helen OP, and Toby Dinh as our presenters. Solemn Mass will be a feature of this retreat. The music for...
Information session for the Permanent Diaconate
Saturday 2 April 2022
10.00am–11.45am
Do you feel called to serve? The Permanent Diaconate is open to single and married men who want to serve God and the Church as ordained ministers. Come and see!
Report Launch: Scarring Effects of the Pandemic Economy in Victoria
Wednesday 6 April 2022
5.00pm–6.30pm
ACU, together with Catholic Social Services Victoria and St Mary’s House of Welcome, is pleased to invite you to the launch of a new report titled, “Scarring Effects of the Pandemic Economy: COVID-19’s Ongoing Impact on Jobs, Insecurity and Social Services in Victoria”. This report shows that the COVID-19 crisis...
Why We Need a Classical Renewal: Online Conference
Friday 8 April 2022, 9.00am
– Saturday 9 April 2022, 3.00pm
Nations and peoples throughout the world are increasingly anxious about their children’s education. They fear they will be left out of the job market, technology will outpace them, and they won’t get into the colleges and universities that provide a secure future. The more people embrace the latest theories, the...
Messiah in the Passover: A Presentation
Saturday 9 April 2022
11.00am–1.00pm
As we prepare for Holy Week, the St Mary’s Greensborough Scripture Study group invites you to a presentation that explores how “the Word became flesh” (John 1:14) at Passover, and deepens our understanding of Jesus’ life and ministry. It will help us gain a deeper appreciation for the intimate connection...
2022 Walk for Justice and Freedom for Refugees
Sunday 10 April 2022
2.00pm–4.00pm
On Palm Sunday people from cities and towns around Australia will be holding rallies and vigils to call for justice for refugees, seeking the release of all refugees, an end to mandatory detention, the provision of permanent protection, family reunions, a safety net support in the community (i.e. access to...
God and Beer: Shakespeare and Catholicism
Monday 11 April 2022
6.30pm–8.00pm
The Knights of the Southern Cross (Dandenong North) invite you to 'the Nott' for a dose of inspiration, ideas and a hot meal. "God and Beer" draws on the truth, beauty and goodness of the Christian faith in the Catholic tradition. Presented by academic Angela Schumann, this talk will focus...
International Ignatian Ecospiritual Online Conference
Monday 25 April 2022, 5.30pm
– Saturday 30 April 2022, 5.30pm
In celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Conversion of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the International Ignatian Ecospiritual Conference in 2022 will seek to encourage a deeper “ecological conversion” through a contemplative immersion experience in Nature in different parts of the world that will lead to reconciliation with Creation. Central...
P.S. Before you go . . .
Kerrie Burn announced as an Inaugural Wikidata Fellow for 2022
Kerrie Burn, Library Manager at Mannix Library at CTC, has been announced as an Inaugural Wikidata Fellow for 2022. Kerrie has headed up the Australian Women in Religion WikiProject since late 2019 which aims to address gender gaps on Wikipedia and spotlight the under-recognised work of women who've made significant contributions to the world’s religious and spiritual traditions.