The YP’s spend an afternoon at Sunrise Supported Living

Last Sunday, we spent an afternoon playing Bingo, crafts and flower decorating with the Residents of Sunrise. It was lovely to see everyone getting involved and we thank all the volunteers and YP Leaders for their time and effort. Special mention to Justin and Sheryn for organising the event and thank you also to the Management Team and Residence at Sunrise Supported Living for allowing us to visit.

Read the event reflections from Judy and Tarryn:

“I had a really lovely afternoon.  It gave me such joy and pleasure to see the smiles on the faces of the residents that attended. The room was filled with lots of laughter and fun and I am grateful to have been part of the experience.  It’s so good to give back to the Community and give some importance and acknowledgment to a Senior who has a wealth of experience and knowledge that is sometimes forgotten and not recognised by other Community members.  However, we are so lucky at St James having such great volunteers both young and mature adults who have such respect and understanding of our older community.  It was evident on Sunday.  Thanks to the Young Paulists.”

– Judy D, Parishioner at St James

“It was a joy to be able to volunteer some time at the Sunrise Supported Living Village on Sunday. Playing bingo was a big hit with the residents and they were thrilled with the prizes they received. I had a great time looking over the shoulder of some residents during bingo to ensure they didn’t miss a number (they were experts at it as not much help was needed at all). The biggest highlight of the day was definitely seeing the residents eyes light up when they saw all the books that had been donated to their library.  Overall it was a great experience enjoyed by all.”

– Tarryn M, Teacher at St Francis

The YP Core Team Leaders would like to thank Judy and Tarryn for their reflections.

Join the YP Core Team Leaders for our May event! Join us to explore key themes in the letter to help us respond to the question at the heart of the Pope’s Encyclical:  What Kind of world do we want to leave to those who come after us, to children who are now growing up? (#160).

Details to come so – watch this space and RSVP to our next event!

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Parish Priest Christmas Message for 2015

Dear Parishioners, Visitors and Friends,

As we gather to celebrate Christmas, another year has passed with many events, public and private, touching our lives and those of the people in our parish community in various ways. No doubt, 2015 has brought its joys and sadness in different measure to each person: all colouring our memories of this past year. Let us strive to open our hearts to others, especially being aware of those who have lost a loved one since last Christmas, or the many over-burdened by worries, sickness and family problems or for any other reason. This year, we are invited by Pope Francis to be instruments of mercy, which means that we have to open our hearts to those living on the outmost fringes of society. We are called to believe that no one is ever beyond hope, past the point where God’s grace and love apply to them. God does not give up on people, even if they give up on themselves. This Christmas, may we reflect on the Incarnation as God’s invitation to us to see Him in our brothers and sisters who are hurting.

Christmas is an opportunity to thank so many parishioners who give abundantly of their time and talents in making our parish the vibrant, faith-filled community that it is. It is calculated that over 300 parishioners take an active part in some form of ministry or parish activity, letting Christ’s light shine in the midst of the struggles and joys. To these volunteers who are the heartbeat of the parish, I am truly indebted.

Some of the highlights of 2015 include:

•  the return of the Young Paulists from the Philippines after spending time in a mission immersion with the Paulist missionaries and who gave tirelessly of their call to mission and service upon their return
•  our rich Easter celebrations where we welcomed six new members into our faith family through the RCIA program
•  the farewell of Martin Enright after 21 years of service to our school community and the welcome of Mary Abbot as the new St James the Apostle primary school principal
•  the establishment of the Church Extension Sub-committee
•  the official opening of our newest primary school, St Clare’s primary school in Truganina
•  the welcoming of new volunteers into our Function committee which now numbers over 14 people
•  the annual fete which again proved to be a success
•  the inaugural Bingo Bayaan which raised over $6000 to support our Paulist missionaries in the Philippines
•  our ongoing faith formation through various guest speakers.

I thank the principals and staff of our four schools who have worked strongly in partnership with myself and the parish in tirelessly providing a strong Catholic identity and high quality education, promoting the dignity and the potential of each person.
May I take this opportunity to thank all our parishioners and friends here at St James for helping us along the journey; a special thank you to the Parish Council and the Parish Staff for their support throughout the year. To all parishioners, for your prayers, gifts, cards, and good wishes and for all that you do in actively revealing Emmanuel – God with us: let this Christmas be a time of true conversion to God’s total self-emptying in Christ and his audacious identification with those on the periphery. As we approach this Christmas season, let it be a time in which we as the Church reclaim the powerlessness of Christ and the fundamental ethos of care for the weak and justice for the excluded. Then the Church can truly stand with confidence as the conduit of mercy and the sign of hope for all.

Yours in mission,

Fr Jude Pirotta mssp
Parish Priest

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For the Young Paulist August event, we ran a Friday night goal setting workshop with Life Coach Joseph Sulfaro. It was an interactive evening where Joe gave us guidance and tips to achieving our life goals. Joe’s unique approach of theory involved us getting out of our comfort zone, changing our mind set and how it all works into God’s plan for us was absolutely inspiring!


Here is Anne’s reflection:

Over my years I have attended various empowering workshops, seminars and forums on effective communication, public speaking, professional growth, leadership and lots more. So when the opportunity arose on Friday 21 August to attend the ‘Young Paulist Goal Setting Workshop’ whilst donating to a wonderful charitable cause; I was definitely in! Not to mention my favourite genres are religion and self-help/motivation and this workshop was a great combo of both.

The presenter’s ideas and insights where quite simple but effective. Activities over the course of the evening gave me a unique kind of freedom and power; the freedom to be at ease whilst thinking about areas that really matter to me. I have to say that in amongst all the crazy dancing and yelling out of powerful affirmations, I walked away experiencing benefits both practical and profound that I feel will continue to expand and unfold over time. Not to mention, they certainly have been at the back of my mind since the event; first one being “I need to get fit and make the time!!”.

I must not though forget to mention that I couldn’t have felt more welcomed by both familiar faces and others I hadn’t met before. There was certainly a great feel around the room; lots of pleasant faces and smiles! I think Fr Jude defined it well on the evening “a place where you can feel safe, welcomed and accepted”. I look forward to attending future events hosted by the YPs as they do such an amazing job!


A BIG THANK YOU to Joe for donating his time and expertise, to the Team at Eiffel Tower Cakes for the refreshments and to our YP Leader Myla, Justin and Sheryn for organising the event!


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St James The Apostle