The colour and pageantry was aplenty, as students waved their school flags and banners and entered St Patrick's Cathedral in East Melbourne for the annual St Patrick's Day Mass, reports Melbourne Catholic.
The Mass reflected this year's Catholic Education Week theme, "Moved by the love of Christ", and the history and tradition of St Patrick's Day.
The Mass was preceded by a procession led by seven schools which are celebrating significant anniversaries this year.
Archbishop Denis Hart was the main celebrant, assisted by Bishop Terry Curtin, Msgr Greg Bennet (Vicar General), Very Rev John Salvano (Dean of St Patrick's Cathedral), Fr David Cartwright (Vocations Director), and Fr John O'Reilly PP.
In his homily the Archbishop encouraged the students to use their gifts and talents. He also spoke on St Patrick's journey and his journey and conversion to a follower of Christ, and how he went and preached in Western and Northern Ireland, an area once considered to be harsh.
Special guests included Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews, Irish ambassador Breandán Ó Caollaí and his wife, Carmel Callan, and MPs Michael O'Brien, Lizzie Blandthorn, Ben Carroll and Nick Wakeling.
The Mass began with the hymn All are welcome and concluded with the recessional hymn This day God gives me. The deer's cry from St Patrick's breastplate was sung as a beautiful reflection after communion.
After Mass, students gathered at the nearby Treasury Gardens for a picnic lunch and concert. They also attended the Young Speaker's Colloquium at the Catholic Leadership Centre to hear about the diverse and unique life journeys of graduates of Melbourne's Catholic schools.
As part of the program for Catholic Education Week, colour and creativity was also on display at the annual Visual Arts Exhibition, which concluded on Saturday.
Video: Moved by the love of Christ on St Patrick’s Day (Melbourne Catholic)