After years of hope, prayers and even a letter to the Pope, a Parramatta parish's dream of a new church has finally come true. Source: Catholic Outlook.
Parishioners of St Madeline Sophie Barat Parish, Kenthurst, gathered on Sunday for an emotional ceremony to celebrate the opening of their new church which was 33 years in the making.
“It’s terrific [to have a church], it’s what we’ve always dreamed about. From the very beginning, we dreamed about having a proper church, and it’s now complete,” former parish priest Fr Chris Dixon said..
Such was the significance of this celebration, not all attendees could fit into the brand new building, with dozens of people participating in the liturgy in the church courtyard.
“Let us go rejoicing into the house of the Lord, even if not all of us can fit into this beautiful new church. What a sight to behold,” Parramatta Bishop Vincent Long OFM Conv. joked at the beginning of his homily.
Bishop Long was the principal celebrant during the dedication of the church, with parish priest Fr Vincent Savarimuthu by his side and Fr Dixon among those concelebrating Mass.
The ceremony began in the old church – the St Madeline’s school hall – with parishioners processing to the new church.
During his thank you speech following the Eucharistic celebration, an emotional Fr Savarimuthu said he hoped the new church will strengthen the community in its mission.
“It has been a great journey for all of us, and God has made it possible to witness this historic event in the faith journey of St Madeline’s parish community,” he said.
The priest also made special mention of a parishioner, the late Maria Aiossa, who was one of the driving forces passionately striving for a church. Mrs Aiossa died August 2018, a few weeks after the first sod for the new building was turned.
Her husband, Joe Aiossa, explained after the ceremony her passion and dedication for a new church.
“She went to the bishop, and she even wrote to the Pope in Rome, she fought for 30 years, and now it’s a reality. I don’t think there would be any other person more happy than her. She’d be the happiest woman in Australia.”
Kenthurst parish’s dream finally a reality (Catholic Outlook)