Adelaide Archdiocese’s Catholic Deaf Community is celebrating 60 years of local support. Source: The Southern Cross.
Sharing stories and experiences of the community with Adelaide's Archbishop Patrick O’Regan was a highlight of the 60th anniversary celebrations held at St Joseph’s Church Hall, Kingswood.
Members of the community also spoke about their hopes and concerns for the future as they endeavour to build on the strong community established by a small group of Adelaide families in 1962.
Among the group were the children of Anne and Kevin Cresdee who, with other hearing and deaf Catholics, saw a need for local support for their children’s faith.
At that time deaf children often travelled to Sydney or Melbourne where there were specialised faith-based schools to educate them.
“A small group of families came together – hearing and deaf – and approached Archbishop (Matthew) Beovich,” said Sr Majella O’Sullivan RSJ, who has been ministering to the deaf community since the 1980s.
“He appointed Fr John Chambers as the chaplain and the families began worshipping at the Hutt St chapel.”
Sr Majella paid tribute to the founding families, saying the current community was “standing on the shoulders” of their hopes and dreams.
For many years the Dominican Sisters supported the community because of their work in Catholic schools for the deaf and hearing impaired interstate.
Sr Majella described the community as “nomadic” because of the numerous changes to their place of worship and gathering – Glenelg North, Dulwich, Edwardstown, Plympton to name a few.
Now happily settled at Kingswood, there are about 30 members gathering on a regular basis and celebrating Liturgy of the Word on the first Sunday of the month.
Standing on the shoulders (By Jenny Brinkworth, The Southern Cross)