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News & Events

Alice Springs youth crime crackdown 250Faith communities in Alice Springs are working together with local elders to respond in practical and spiritual ways to the growing youth street crime crisis in the Central Australian city.

Parish Priest of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Parish, Fr Prakash Menezes SVD, says the first step in responding to the situation is to understand the deep-seated social issues at play.

Visitator at Dorish Maru 2023 250The SVD Australia Province is hosting two General Visitators over the next month, who will make their way around the various districts in Australia, New Zealand, and Thailand to spend time getting to know the confreres and observing our ministries in action.

Fr Yosef Masan Toron SVD, who is currently serving as the General Chairperson of the Indonesian Biblical Institute, is one of the Visitators appointed by the SVD Generalate in Rome. He is joined by Fr Jose Antunes da Silva SVD, who is Vice Superior General and was the provincial superior of Portugal.

Fr Bill Burt Golden Jubilee of Ordination 2023 250Fr Bill Burt SVD marked his Golden Jubilee of priestly ordination recently with a “simple celebration” with confreres and friends at Melbourne’s Dorish Maru College.

It was fitting that Fr Bill’s celebration took place in an SVD formation house, given that he has worked in the formation area on several occasions over those 50 years of priesthood and missionary life.

Fr Asaeli Rass SVD profile pic 250As we all embark on the season of Lent, we Divine Word Missionaries of the Australia Province are also about to undertake our Provincial Chapter.

The theme of the Chapter is ‘“Your Light Must Shine Before Others” (Mt.5: 16): Faithful and Creative Disciples in a Wounded World’ and it is a theme which gives us much to reflect on.

Fr Budi Kleden SVD Message for St Arnold Janssen feast day 2023 250One of the spiritual legacies of our Founder, St Arnold Janssen, is his prayer: "May the Heart of Jesus live in the hearts of all people," said SVD Superior-General Fr Budi Kleden in his message for St Arnold's feast day this month.
The heart of Jesus is a heart rooted in his intimate relationship with the Father and his loving embrace of humanity, a heart full of humility and compassion, a heart that rejoices in the Lord and beats for the suffering humanity and the world, a heart that is united with the Lord and feels the pain of the world. If this heart lives in us, we become missionary disciples who are faithful to the Word, and one, in solidarity with the people. Saint Arnold passed on to us this prayer and is teaching us this prayer with his life.

Ukraine1 250The friends and partners in mission of the SVD Australia Province raised more than $70,000 in recent months for two special mission appeals – one to assist the people affected by the war in Ukraine and the other, to purchase a campervan for ministry to remote communities in Central Australia.

“We are very grateful for the generosity of people who donated to these special appeals,” says Mission Secretary Fr Viet Nguyen SVD.

Parramatta Interfaith council CathOutlook 250Two Divine Word Missionaries priests from the Australia Province have been appointed to diocesan ecumenical or interfaith bodies, to help promote dialogue and understanding among faith communities.

Fr Michael Hardie SVD has been appointed to the Parramatta Diocese Interfaith Commission while Fr Mikhael Loke SVD has been appointed to the reference group for the Brisbane Archdiocese Council for Ecumenism and Inter-religious Relations.

Acculturation Course 2023 250The newest arrivals in the SVD Australia Province have taken a deep-dive into Australian life, attending the province’s Summer Acculturation Program, which they welcomed as an opportunity to know more about the place and the people and also to grow further as missionaries.
The workshop ran over two weeks at the SVD’s retreat centre at St Leonard’s in Victoria. It was designed for all confreres who have recently arrived in the AUS Province, both students and priests.

St Arnold Janssen feast day Bathurst Island Mass with candle 250Divine Word Missionaries across the Australia Province celebrated the feast days of two SVD saints – St Arnold Janssen and St Joseph Freinademetz this month – and for the first time, the SVD founder’s feast was celebrated in the Tiwi Islands.

The SVD, founded by St Arnold in Steyl, Holland in 1875, took up ministry at Our Lady of Peace and St Theresa’s Parish on Bathurst Island last August, following decades of pastoral ministry there by the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart.

Fr Asaeli Rass SVD profile pic 250Happy New Year! And welcome to the first edition of In the Word for 2023.

As you receive this Enews, I am in Fiji preparing to facilitate the meeting of the Federation of Catholic Bishops Conferences of Oceania. It is a crucial meeting for the bishops of our region and will cover many things, including the preparations for Pope Francis’ Synod on Synodality. I ask for your prayers for the bishops’ discernment and also for me as I facilitate the meeting with the help of secretariat staff.

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