On Wednesday 12th May, we commenced with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Thanksgiving prayers then Benediction followed by a talk in the Parish Hall where we welcomed Fr Lawrence Murphy SDS who spoke about his journey with the Salvatorian Order.
Born in Dublin, his vocation started at the age of 12 when he knew he was going to be a priest. When asked why he joined the priesthood he said that he wanted to help people and that this has not changed in all these years.
He served as an Altar boy from the age of 10 to 14 then went to Salvatorian college in Reading in Hampshire. There he had an awareness that priesthood imbued in helping people and this he wanted to emulate and share the spirit of what Fr Francis Jordan was all about.
Fr Lawrence also said he got to know that priests were human.
He said that he is still continuing his learning and that we don’t know everything except the message of the love of Christ which can be shared with how we live our lives and the example we set for others.
Fr Lawrence came to Australia in 1966 by ship as a chaplain and stayed at Bellevue then moved to St Anthony’s in Greenmount. He is now retired and lives in Redcliffe.
We have been privileged to have him as a pioneer to share his story.
On Thursday evening, Fr Zyggy Wloczek SDS presented a power point on the Life journey of Blessed Francis of the Cross Jordan.
From the country of his birth in Germany in 1848 through his ministry to his final years to his death in 1918. The Salvatorian Society started as a teaching society and organised special schools especially as there was an incredible need for education in his time. He told us that he was someone who was trying to make Catholics a force in the world. Despite the different nationalities he tried to unify us as Christians.
Fr Zyggy also spoke about qualities for the ‘Causes of Saints’ and made reference to “During the solemn proclamation of the decree on the Heroic Virtues of the Founder, on March, 19, 2011 at the Motherhouse, in his Homily, Cardinal Angelo Amato, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, referred to his audience with Pope Benedict XVI on January, 14, 2011 during which the Pope decided to proclaim the Heroic Virtues of Father Jordan: ‘A distinguished son of the German Church and the Universal Church. The Church therefore proclaims That it is holiness that is the source of many of the works of Fr. Jordan. It is from his virtuous life that his Apostolic and missionary activity grows.
Venerable Fr Jordan has risen above our mediocrity thanks to his deep faith, great hope and generous love.’”
“Thanks to documents, testimonies, and historical studies, we can get to know him as he was.
Father Jordan teaches us that it is worth believing, trusting in God, not to be afraid of adversities, neither from the outside nor from within, not to be discouraged even by our own weakness and sinfulness, not to give up, and always try again, despite the lack of resources or favourable circumstances.”
On Friday we commenced with Mass at 7pm where Fr Francis Blessed the new Salvatorian Vestments. This was followed by a talk in the Parish Hall by our guest speaker Mrs Judy David who shared with us her journey to become a Lay Salvatorian.
“I was born in India and migrated to Australia in 1970. I’ve been married for 38 years and have been a Lay Salvatorian for the last six. My husband and myself have been part of the Holy Trinity Parish Community in Embleton for the last 21 years. Retiring recently has been a real blessing as it gives me an opportunity to participate in the celebration of the Eucharist daily and spend more time in prayer and reflection.
I was first introduced to the Salvatorian Family in 2009 when Father Emil Ciecierega, was the Parish Priest of the Holy Trinity. In 2010, Father Leonard Macionczyk, the Spiritual Director of the Lay Salvatorians, conducted a Reflection Day and after asked me if I was interested in joining the Collaborators group. I felt so blessed that I attended the session because it was then, that I was inspired by Father Francis Jordan’s spirituality.
To me, being a Salvatorian Collaborator, I had a sense of belonging, whereby I was able to join with others, to live out my call more deeply, by using my time and talents in my parish ministries; as Father Francis Jordan said; “so that all may come to know and love Our Saviour”. It was a wonderful sense of fellowship, community, and spiritual growth.
My Journey from Collaborator to a Lay Salvatorian began when members of the Collaborator group were encouraged to think and pray about becoming Lay Salvatorians and making a public commitment to the mission as envisioned by our founder, Father Francis Jordan.
Lay Salvatorians are one of the three branches of the Salvatorian Family, along with the Sisters of the Divine Saviour and the Society of the Divine Saviour. Together we work to improve the quality of life around the world.
Lay Salvatorians commit to live out the Gospel values by using our gifts to spread the love of Jesus through all ways and means. We serve in our daily lives at work and at home and minister to all whom we encounter. As lay people we are able to connect with people where a religious person might not be able to reach.
After much prayer and discernment, I made my commitment to become a Lay Salvatorian on the 31st May 2015.
In Australia we currently have 11 Lay Salvatorians; 4 in Perth, 2 in Carnarvon, 1 in South Australia and 4 in Sydney. There are also 4 others who have been inspired by the spirituality of Father Francis Jordan and are discerning to become a Lay Salvatorian.
As a Lay Salvatorians we have monthly meetings to discuss how we can participate in projects within our local community and the broader international community. We have annual live-in retreats and in previous years, various pilgrimages to sacred places in Europe. To me the Salvatorian Spirituality is about God inviting you to enter into a deeper relationship with Him, by spending more time in prayer, to hear what He is calling me to do, so that with His help, I’m able to lead others to know and love Him.”