The Tullio family which runs Christian Supplies SA on Findon Road have been kept busy creating Paschal candles that will be lit in churches around the Archdiocese during the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday night.
The fire of the candle, which symbolises our eternal life in Christ, is then lit each day during Mass throughout the Paschal season until Ascension Thursday.
“These candles are personalised with different designs and I work with the customer to ensure they are getting what they require,” explained Gabby Tullio.
“I also create personalised candles for baptisms, weddings, funerals, school, ordinations and other celebrations. Given that there will be a number of baptisms on Easter I’ve also been very busy preparing those.”
Gabby, a former teacher, and wife Rachele, who is assistant principal Faith and Identity at Christian Brothers College, had always thought about purchasing the business “in our later years”. However, when previous owners Peter and Albina DePalma were selling in 2016, the decision to purchase the business was “right” and came at a good time.
It provided an exciting change in direction for Gabby and also provided employment for their son Gabriel, 21, who suffered a life-threatening stroke five years previously.
“Catering for all the diverse Christian denominations, cultural groups, organisations, parishes, schools and the general public is a great challenge, but we endeavour to provide good personal service to all who enter our shop or make an enquiry via other means,” Gabby said.
“We have a loyal customer base who come into the shop or contact us on a regular basis. We also have many new customers who come into our shop after having driven past for many years. Most are surprised by the quantity and range of goods we carry.”
With 15,000 items in stock, there is something for everyone and since taking over the Tullios have introduced a unique line of one-off handcrafted baptismal/christening gowns and stoles.
“We also have the most extensive range of rosary beads in South Australia, including a special range of Swarovski crystal beads for a special occasion such as a wedding,” Gabriel said, adding that one of the enjoyable parts of his job was hearing customers’ stories of the special sacramental gifts they had received.
“We have customers who value these gifts immensely and tell us that they still have mementos of their first Confirmation and First Holy Communion from 70 years ago!”
Changes to the way people shop means the business is also developing its online presence.
“Not only do we serve customers in Adelaide and South Australia, we now receive orders from throughout Australia and internationally… just recently we sent a tabernacle to Florida,” Gabby said.
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