God’s grace, like water, always flows downward. We are called to be channels of this grace for a world in need, allowing the waters of grace not only to heal and renew us, but to flow through us into a world searching for meaning, for hope and for identity.

This past week we celebrated the 125th anniversary of St Patrick’s Cathedral, an important milestone in the history of Melbourne’s family of faith. In his homily, Archbishop Peter A Comensoli spoke about the cathedral’s significance as a meeting place between God and humanity, as a place where the grace of God can be touched, tasted and seen. He urged Catholics in Melbourne to take up the mission of St Patrick in our own time and to let ‘the waters of grace flow from this sanctuary of St Patrick’s to bring healing to us, and give life to our city.’

Melbourne also received a visit last week from American author and speaker Mary Eberstadt, who spoke with clarity, wisdom and conviction in a wide-ranging public conversation with the Archbishop that touched especially on the family, religious freedom and secularisation. Speaking on the topic ‘The Future of Humanity Passes by Way of the Family’, Eberstadt focused on the unique place of the Church in a secular world, observing a deep hunger in the broader culture for meaning and identity, and championing the Church’s noble, hopeful vision of humanity as created in the image of God.

John Casamento is a man of deep faith and a well-known photographer. This week we hear his fascinating story and about how his faith has guided him in a career filled with moments of grace and beauty, but also of human brokenness. From murderers to prime ministers, Hollywood stars to royalty, people on the street and even a pope, John reflects on the people he’s met, the things he’s seen and the need we all have for God’s love. As he says, ‘The way we treat one another is the way we show God’s love.’

As floods continue to devastate communities across Victoria, we have an opportunity to show God’s love in very practical ways. We learn about the St Vincent de Paul Society’s recently launched Flood Appeal, and about how our support will assist the efforts of local Vinnies’ volunteers to lift people out of crisis for weeks, months and perhaps even years ahead.

Finally, as we observe All Souls’ Day today, we are reminded that the reach of God’s grace extends even beyond death, gathering together the whole community of God’s people, living and dead. While death plays an important role in the life of faith, Christ’s resurrection turns us from defeat to victory, and from sadness to celebration. Death has its say, but not the last word.

May God’s grace flow through our lives this week, bringing meaning and hope to each of one of us, and to the world we are called to love and serve.

‘May these stones continue to sing’: Melbourne celebrates 125 years of St Patrick’s Cathedral
The bells of St Patrick’s Cathedral rang in celebration through the streets of Melbourne on Thursday 27 October as the Archdiocese marked a momentous milestone: the 125th anniversary of the cathedral’s consecration. More than 1,200 people were present for this joyful occasion.
The way of the family: Mary Eberstadt in conversation with Archbishop Comensoli
American speaker and author Mary Eberstadt visited Australia recently and joined Archbishop Peter A Comensoli in conversation on the topic ‘The Future Passes by Way of the Family’. Addressing and audience of about 150 people, she argued that the Catholic Church’s teachings on marriage and family are being vindicated by an objective look at some of the world’s most recent social-scientific studies.
John Casamento, through the lens of photography and faith
John Casamento has been a professional photographer for more than five decades, photographing people from all walks of life, from murderers and people on the street, to prime ministers, Hollywood stars, royalty and even a pope. Fellow photographer Fiona Basile reminisces with John about his fascinating career and how he’s kept the faith through it all.
St Vincent de Paul Society launches Flood Appeal
Written by: St Vincent de Paul Society
Devastating floods have affected communities across the state in recent weeks. To respond to the needs of affected communities, St Vincent de Paul Society Victoria (Vinnies Victoria) has launched a Flood Appeal. Local Vinnies volunteers will play a critical role in continuing to lift people out of crisis for weeks, months and perhaps years ahead—and your support will enable that vital work.
All Souls’ Day: gathering the living and the dead
Written by: Andrew Hamilton SJ
Death has a central place in the life of the Church, helping us to focus on what matters in our lives and to wonder at the mystery of our coming into the world for such a relatively short time, only to leave it again. When we think of death, however, we are turned from defeat to victory, and from sadness to celebration through Christ’s rising from the dead. All Souls’ Day is a day that gathers together the whole community God’s people, living and dead.
‘The ennobled vision of men, women and children put forward by the magisterium shines all the more brightly against our social realities.’
Mary Eberstadt
on the enduring value of the Church’s teaching on the family
Upcoming events
2022 Ordination Mass at Patrick’s Cathedral
Saturday 19 November 2022
Join us for Mass at St Patrick's Cathedral to celebrate the ordination to the priesthood of transitional deacons Huy Nguyen, Vinh Do and An Le, and the ordination to the transitional diaconate of Thomas Christie, Tien Tran and Peter (Ngoc) Nguyen. As St Alphonsus Liguori once said, ‘The happiest man...
Melbourne Catholic Professionals luncheon
Tuesday 22 November 2022
Since their establishment in Australia over a decade ago, the Catholic Professionals events have quickly become premier networking opportunities. These events engage a broad range of industry leaders, while providing a place to meet people, listen to exceptional speakers and address issues and trends in the life of the Church...
St Patrick’s Cathedral concert: Choral Scholars of St John’s
Friday 4 November 2022
Join the choral scholars of Saint John’s, Camberwell, under the directorship of Christopher Watson, in an evening of exquisite vocal music from sixteenth-century England. The program features Christopher Tye’s ‘Missa Euge bone’, known for its fine harmonic craftsmanship to which these skilled singers will bring their purity of tone and...
St Dominic’s Church: ‘The Virtue of Obedience’ talk
Friday 4 November 2022
St Dominic's Church is hosting Fr Mark O'Brian, a Dominican priest, to talk about ‘The Virtue of Obedience’ and the Divine Mercy spirituality. The Divine Mercy spirituality was given to St Faustina by Jesus Christ himself when he said, ‘It is when you submit yourself to my will that you...
Jesuit Mission webinar: ‘Water, the Gift of Life’
Wednesday 9 November 2022
With the support of Jesuit Mission, the Jesuit-run Water Project in Timor-Leste has transformed 15 rural villages by providing vulnerable people with access to clean and safe water. To learn more about the project, Jesuit Mission invites you to join their upcoming webinar, ‘Water, the Gift of Life’. During the...
God and Beer: ‘How do Christian Faith and Psychology Work Together?’
Monday 14 November 2022
An initiative of the Knights of the Southern Cross, God and Beer brings together people of all ages from across the south-east suburbs several times a year. God and Beer aims to inspire and strengthen Christians through ideas for renewing the Church.This week's speaker is Colin Patterson, a former psychologist...
Carddijn Lecture: ‘Siblings all, Sign of the Times’
Monday 14 November 2022
The Australian Cardinal Institute is pleased to host Canadian Cardinal, Michael Czerny, SJ, president of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, who will deliver the Cardijn Lecture for 2022. Cardinal Czerny will address the theme ‘Siblings all, Sign of the Times: the Social Teaching of Pope Francis’, which...
Musical: ‘The Call of Guadalupe’
Thursday 24 November 2022
The Call of Guadalupe musical is an entertaining, uplifting Christian musical that celebrates life, love and hope. Based on a story by Anne Lim, the musical was created by playwright and artist John Lee, with music composed by Peter Foster. St Joseph’s Parish is thrilled to have the participation of...

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