Christmas Day is fast approaching—a time to gather with those we love, remembering that in the miracle of the nativity, God also came to keep company with us. Jesus Christ, our Emmanuel, accompanies us in all the ups and downs of our lives, the exuberant celebrations as well as the quieter or more challenging moments. Christmas is a time to welcome him again into our hearts and our lives.

Writing from the Philippines, where the mania for Christmas lights can sometimes feel overwhelming, Fr Nathan Rawlins reflects on how we might avoid being ‘blinded’ by all the flashy distractions that can come with Christmas. Rather than chasing after material or passing things, he says, perhaps we might focus on being a light for others, and on ‘the One who for our sake meets us in the crib’.

Someone who has sought to live this way is Fr Vinh Do. Newly ordained to the priesthood in November, he has, like Mary, responded with an enthusiastic ‘yes' to God. We hear some of his inspiring story: of how, as a 10-year-old boy in Vietnam, he first became aware of his 'deep desire' to serve God, and how that desire has led him to the priesthood and to ministry in Melbourne.

After a couple of years of restrictions and setbacks, about 250 staff from a range of Archdiocesan ministries and agencies were finally able to gather again at St Patrick’s Cathedral for a special Thanksgiving Mass to mark the end of the year. In his homily, Archbishop Peter A Comensoli reflected on the God who comes to deliver us. ‘May this same God of our deliverance, the Son made flesh for us, free us of our burdens, bring us to renewal, and open for us paths of life and peace,’ he said.

And as we begin to turn our minds to a new year and fresh beginnings, we hear about the new brand and visual identity that was recently launched by Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools (MACS). Designed to reflect the Catholic values that inform their mission, the striking new logo, with the cross at its centre, evokes the purpose of MACS schools: forming lives of faith, hope and love in the light of Jesus Christ.

Finally, a reminder that this is the last e-newsletter for 2022. We will be taking a break over January, returning in the first week of February. In the meantime, we wish you deep joy and peace this Christmas as you celebrate the coming of Christ among us.

Fr Vinh Do: following his deepest desire
Fr Vinh Do says that his first day at Corpus Christi College in Carlton was ‘the best day of my life. Firstly, because I’d found my true calling and I responded with a “yes” to God. And secondly because I knew this was the vocation that God wanted for me.’ Seven years on, Fr Vinh was one of three priests ordained at St Patrick’s Cathedral on Saturday 19 November, along with three transitional deacons.
Blinded by fairy lights
Written by: Fr Nathan Rawlins
At times, we can all be blinded by fairy lights—distracted by all the flashy distractions that come with Christmas. But the real 'magic of Christmas' that we hope for and try to capture every year cannot be found in material or passing things. To avoid being blinded by the fairy lights, perhaps we need to remember to be a light for others and to keep our eyes fixed on him who is the light of the world.
Continue reading: Blinded by fairy lights
‘Together again’: Archdiocesan staff and agencies gather for Thanksgiving Mass
On Thursday 15 December, about 250 staff from a range of Archdiocesan ministries and agencies gathered at St Patrick’s Cathedral for a special Thanksgiving Mass. It was an opportunity to enjoy the company of colleagues, give thanks for the year, and be nourished by Word and Sacrament for all that lies ahead.
Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools launches new brand and visual identity
Written by: Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools (MACS)
An exciting new brand and visual identity has been launched by Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools (MACS). Acting Executive Director Dr Edward Simons unveiled the new brand, which brings to life the purpose of MACS schools: to inspire and enable every student to flourish and enrich the world.
‘Because I have actually felt the love of Jesus and God, I also want to bring that love to others’
Fr Vinh Do
on what motivates him in his ministry
Upcoming events
Christmas Eve Masses, St Patrick’s Cathedral
Saturday 24 December 2022
6.00pm–1.00am
We look forward to welcoming the community to St Patrick's Cathedral to celebrate the great feast of Christmas! Christmas Eve Masses (24 December) will take place at 6pm, 8pm and 11.30pm* (carols followed by Midnight Mass). On Christmas Day (25 December), Masses will take place at 8am, 9.30am and 11am*...
Christmas Day Masses, St Patrick’s Cathedral
Sunday 25 December 2022
8.00am–12.00pm
We look forward to welcoming the community to St Patrick's Cathedral to celebrate the great feast of Christmas! On Christmas Day (25 December), Masses will be celebrated at 8am, 9.30am and 11am. The 11am Mass will be livestreamed to the Archdiocesan YouTube Channel. For all enquiries, email communication@cam.org.au.
‘The Australian Nativity Scene’, St Elizabeth’s Parish
Monday 5 December 2022
– Friday 13 January 2023
St Elizabeth’s Parish invites you to visit its Australian nativity scene on its 19th year of display. The nativity scene was created by artist Wilson Fernandez, and it has been regarded as one of Australia's most traditional nativity scenes and the largest of its kind in the country. The nativity...
Good Shepherd Church: feast of the Infant Jesus of Prague
Sunday 15 January 2023
1.40pm–2.40pm
Join the Good Shepherd Church and the Disciples of the Infant Jesus of Prague in the 20th celebration of the feast of the holy and miraculous Infant Jesus of Prague. There will be Mass, Rosary and special prayers consisting of novenas and chaplets. After Mass, a procession will carry the...
‘Made for More: Visions of the Promised Land’ with Christopher West
Tuesday 24 January 2023
6.00pm–9.30pm
The Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne and the Theology of the Body Institute proudly present ‘Made for More: Visions of the Promised Land’ with Christopher West—Music by Mike Mangione. Made for More creatively weaves together dynamic presentations with live music, media and sacred art for an evening of beauty and reflection...
‘Made for More: Visions of the Promised Land’ with Christopher West
Wednesday 25 January 2023
6.00pm–9.30pm
The Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne and the Theology of the Body Institute proudly present ‘Made for More: Visions of the Promised Land’ with Christopher West—Music by Mike Mangione. Made for More creatively weaves together dynamic presentations with live music, media and sacred art for an evening of beauty and reflection...
Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School: 100th anniversary
Sunday 12 February 2023
11.15am–1.15pm
All past students and staff of Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Primary School, Prahran East, are invited to celebrate their centenary with a Mass at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, followed by an open school, morning tea and memorabilia display. Please RSVP by Monday 6 February 2023 to the...
Dominican Sisters of Saint Cecilia: ‘Lamps Alight’ women’s retreat
Saturday 18 February 2023
(All day event)
Join the Dominican Sisters and Anima Women’s Network for a one-day retreat to explore Pope St John Paul II’s beautiful and profound thought on the dignity of women and the order of love. The retreat will feature Fr Paschal Corby OFM. There will be Mass at 9am, followed by adoration...

This newsletter is published by the Communications Office
of the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne.

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