The parish opened its church doors to warmly welcome the Project Compassion launch for 2021 on Sunday February 14.
Parishioners acknowledged the multiculturalism of the community by dressing in their national costume and bringing symbols from the various countries around the world to be placed with this year’s Project Compassion symbols from Solomon Islands, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Tanzania.
Vicar General Fr Philip Marshall, was joined by parish priest Fr Selvaraj Leenaiah and Fr Leon Czechowicz to concelebrate the Mass.
Fr Philip quoted a moving story from St Oscar Romero’s biography highlighting the theme this year to ‘Be more’ – taken from Romero’s prayer to ‘Aspire not to have more but to be more’ – by challenging us to enter into a new experience of compassion with empathy and love.
Fr Selva shared his own Caritas story ‘from the field’, being the parish priest of St Barthalomeo Church in Kodimunai, (Diocese of Kottar, Tamil Nadu, India) that was devastated by the Indian Ocean tsunami that hit the coastline in 2004. His personal insight into the programs Caritas is involved in made an impact on the people he serves at the Clearview/Kilburn parish.
The celebration highlighted hospitality, multiculturalism, and community spirit.
It was followed by the schools launch of Project Compassion by Archbishop Patrick O’Regan at Thomas More College, Salisbury, on Shrove Tuesday.
Archbishop O’Regan told students from the college and neighbouring Catholic schools that the journey towards Easter, beginning at Lent, was “the journey to a bigger heart”.
He said ‘being more’ was about “allowing God to be part of our lives”.
“God wants to take this journey with us, it’s not something we do alone…God actually walks with us.”
After the liturgy, Archbishop O’Regan helped cook pancakes for students and staff.
Project Compassion is the annual Lenten appeal for humanitarian and development organisation Caritas Australia.Jump to next article