Located in the South East, the parish comprises St Alphonsus Church at Millicent and St Brigid’s Church at Beachport.
A highlight of the ‘long day’ visit to the parish was a meal prepared and served by students from
St Anthony’s Catholic Primary School, using produce grown in their Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program.
The program is the centrepiece of the school’s commitment to sustainability. Year 6 and 7 classes participate in a fortnightly rotation, where they learn new skills, grow, harvest, cook and share produce grown in the school garden.
During a student-led tour of the school, the visitation team of Father Philip Marshall, Deacon Tim Grauel and Jill Gallio were shown other ecological programs such as the outdoor nature-learning garden, fish and frog ponds, chooks, orchard, sacred space, butterfly garden and recycling program.
The day also included Mass at two aged care facilities, a visit to the local Vinnies store, various opportunities to distribute Holy Communion and Anointing of the Sick for those in hospital or housebound, a meeting with the Parish Pastoral Council and a joint South East area schools board meeting in the evening.
Fr Marshall said each of the encounters highlighted the way the light of the gospel was reaching people – young and old – in their place of need through the faithful presence and creative outreach of parishioners and teachers.
The visitation concluded with a whole of parish Mass at St Alphonsus Church on June 30.
After Mass, a shared lunch was enjoyed by around 45 parishioners in the parish hall, followed by a Q&A forum featuring insightful questions about the local and universal Church. The team offered responses and thanked parish priest Fr Dean Marin and those gathered for their “warm hospitality, open discussion and obvious desire to be the best church community that they can be under sometimes challenging circumstances”.
Fr Marin said the visitation “both a unifying and inspiring time for our parish”.
“Fr Philip’s inspiring words at the whole of community Mass have encouraged us on the journey of renewing our parish and reaching out to those in need,” he said.
“As always the country hospitality of our people at the shared lunch was second to none.
“We appreciate the efforts of Fr Philip and team in coming down from Adelaide to be with us on the three occasions.”Jump to next article