Kildare Ministries Newsletter

10 August 2018
Issue Five
A Reflection on the Conference as a Whole
Awakening the Hope We Share
Expression of Gratitude to Massimo Faggioli
Land Transfer Ritual - Kildare College 
Marian College, Ararat
Kilbreda College welcome Fr. Timothy Radcliffe op 
Formation Events
Important Dates
Social Media
Kildare Ministries
(03) 9682 2973
54 Beaconsfield Parade
Albert Park, Victoria, 3206


A reflection on the liturgy on the first day of the Conference in Brigidine College, St. Ives

Luke 10: 1-11

To me, ‘gospel’ is what the early followers of Jesus wanted us to know about him – and this was from the vantage point of a generation or two after Jesus lived.  It was not concerned with historical events but what was significant in terms of making sense of the message and mission.  Usually the event or saying or injunction from Jesus was not part of the accepted wisdom of the time – which is why it is remembered as significant.

So what do we make of this sending off of the disciples on mission? 

They were being sent to the Gentiles (or non-Jews) – why?  Jesus obviously did not see the ‘reign of God’ as exclusively for the Jewish people.  Those being sent are told ‘carry no purse, no bag, no sandals …’ and ‘eat what is set before you’.  In other words ‘be dependent’ (not an attractive idea).  But more amazingly Jesus was also telling them to accept that the rules of the purity code and all the taboos that were part of that code were to be disregarded.  They were to make no fuss but accept the ways of the people they were visiting.  Heady stuff and shocking – all good Jews only ate what was allowed, prepared by people who obeyed all the rules down to the last minutiae of rules and regulations.  There were clear Jewish ways of behaving. 

In fact, transgressions were actually being structured into the mission.  Laws were not to be kept if they got in the way of relationships and community.  The clear message was: ‘live the way the people live, enter into their world.  Be free and brave enough to do what is right and good – irrespective of tradition or expectation’. 

Therein is the hope that Kildare Ministries has to offer our world: carve out a way of being brave and strong and living that is not preoccupied with law and expectations but ways that will mirror the reign of God - a God who is not neutral but on the side of the poor and oppressed because they have no-one else. 

As with these first disciples to the Gentiles, may the gospel of Kildare Ministries (when written) be able to say ‘we sensed in them that the reign of God has come near’.  






Brigid Arthur csb​

Trustee Kildare Ministries

A Reflection on the Conference as a Whole

A reflection on the Conference as a whole

So we have just completed a second Kildare Ministries conference.  A time to reflect on belonging to a new body in the church.  The significance of belonging and the identity being forged should not be missed.  Just as religious congregations were founded at a time in history so Kildare Ministries was founded five years ago.  We may ask: why begin new bodies in the church?  In particular why begin a new body in the twenty first century Church which is experiencing crisis and diminishment, challenge and self-doubt?  And the answer: Because that is what we seemed communally called to do. 

What is significant about the founding of Kildare Ministries?  It is new because nothing existed to ensure the ongoing governance of the ministries that a group of religious women had established and nurtured.  It is made up of lay people.  It is not clerical but it is part of the world wide communion of the Catholic Church.  It is an organisation built on Jesus’ vision of a discipleship of equals, of the reign of God breaking in on the world, and founded on the values of compassion and justice, love and forgiveness, peace and hope.  Jesus’ disciples were a mixed bunch and all that was asked of them was to listen, learn, and to follow someone who was turning the world upside down!  (a simple task)  Kildare Ministries is really much the same.  It is not only about the maintenance of ministries.  It is about living by values which are challenging, as it was when Jesus first spoke of this new Kingdom of God. Jesus modelled the power of living these values and people witnessed the transforming impact this had. It is no less powerful today when people in Kildare Ministries witness to those same gospel values, and we believe that we are all called to do that in classrooms, staffrooms, offices, playgrounds, Boards, Stewardship Councils and with people in need and indeed all who cross our paths.  

We experienced warmth and friendship at the conference and we attempted to live community and explore our sense of mutuality and genuine welcome to all.   These are hallmarks of any genuine Christian group. 

The real expression of our faith belief is how we live as community. Paul writes to the early Christians: Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. (Ephesians 4:2)  This is where we are as we gathered, we listened, we responded, and now we go back to a deeper understanding of our collective story as Kildare Ministries people. 




Brigid Arthur csb​

Trustee Kildare Ministries


Awakening the Hope We Share

Some photos from our biennial Conference




Expression of Gratitude to Massimo Faggioli

Kildare Ministries Conference

Massimo, two images spring to mind. The first is a Pentecost wherein you have ignited numerous flames of hope for us. Alternatively, we could return to the river image where, not only are we considering which bank we are standing on and what are the questions from the other side, but in fact you have taken us on a journey down the river on the barge of Francis and indeed we have met a few rapids along the way, one of which for me is that Laudato Si is about power!


Amongst many other things that have encouraged me in your presentations is the insight that Francis actually sees the world through the eyes of the poor. You have also shown us how he straddles the bridge between prophecy and pragmatism and that compromise for the sake of the poor is possible

The ministry of our three Community Works springs to mind with Francis’ insistence that we be a Church of accompaniment – out on the streets as it were, embracing all the poor, not just Catholics.


And what challenges lie within our educational centres with their 8,000 plus young people? Our schools as you suggest need to humanize before they evangelize. What better way to empower them than with the belief that they are living ‘holy’ lives as they go about their daily business confronting the ‘prosperity gospel’, rejecting the ‘technocratic paradigm’ that requires all things to be measured in order to assess their value, whilst nurturing a heart for outreach, compassion and inclusion.


I really appreciated the way in which you contextualized so much of Francis’ teaching in the complexity and multi-layered context of events and movements of history and of contemporary times. The intersection of the politics, economics and the many other shapers of human behaviour are not unrelated to church teaching. The fact that all are interconnected on this one and only home planet Earth bears witness to the reality that each action has its impact on ever widening circles of influence.


So what for Kildare ministries as a lay led ecclesial body? Can we claim our authority as a voice in the church and in the world? Can we follow in Francis footsteps to be ‘politically incorrect’? Can we engage in the process of inversion and conversion to new Spirit led ways?


It is time to embrace Francis’s deep conviction that we are an integral part of the one community of life on planet Earth, our common home. We are seeking to hear the cry of poor humanity visible and invisible and now we must also respond to the new call to model and practice the belief that there is no other option than to listen to mother Earth ‘amongst the most abandoned and maltreated of our poor’ and weave a future that embraces the whole Earth community in this evolutionary understanding of the living gospel.  


Thank you Massimo for a refreshing, insightful and integrated analysis of Francis’ teaching. Thank you for placing before us innumerable challenges at the heart of which is the liberation and empowerment of ourselves as lay people in the church and in the world.





Anne Boyd csb

Members Council


Land Transfer Ritual - Kildare College 

Kildare College, 3rd of July 2018

Kildare College celebrated a significant moment in its history this week as the stewardship of Kildare College was officially handed over from the Brigidine Sisters to the Trustees of Kildare Ministries.


Gathered in the College’s original building, the ritual commenced with a traditional Welcome to Country from Jack Buckskin, a Kaurna member of the community, before Kildare’s Lamp of Learning was brought to the stage. This was done in a procession which included a Kaurna Elder, Kathy; one of the sisters who taught at Kildare College, Sr Moira; a representative of the Trustees, Sr Maree, and a year 8 student, Madeline. The lamp is a representation of the Spirit that was here on this land from the very beginning of time along with the light that comes with the risen Christ, and a promise to keep it alight forever in our hearts.


Presented by Sr Anne Hill, the Victorian Community Leader, the Brigidine Sisters gifted a plaque to signify the official handing forward of the stewardship of Kildare College to Kildare Ministries, received by Kathy McEvoy on behalf of the Trustees of Kildare Ministries.


After a co-missioning statement, read in unison by representatives of the Members’ Council, Trustees, Kildare College and the Brigidine Sisters gathered, the guests moved into the Wirra (an area of the College dedicated to indigenous culture and learning), where the College was presented with an art work entitled Woman of Strength and Gentleness. The art work is the creation of Chris Crebbin assisted by our Nunga Group students. It represents the land which is old, and has many stories. It also represents a woman who embodies the love and connection to the land and spirit. She is a story teller and brings people together to keep culture alive. Following this presentation, Jack Buckskin performed a Cleansing Ceremony, an ancient custom among Indigenous Australians. It involves the burning of various native plants to produce smoke which is believed to have cleansing properties and the ability to ward off bad spirits.

Guests then enjoyed a short performance by the college dancers, and lunch prepared by the Hospitality students.


“It was a beautiful celebration of the history of the college, and quite a moving event”, commented Tina Neate, Deputy Principal of Kildare College.


For this significant occasion, the event was attended by some of the founding Brigidine Sisters, representatives of Kildare Ministries (Members Council, Trustees, Kildare Education Ministry Board and the Mission and Ministry Team), Kildare College Stewardship Council, current and past staff, Principals, partner primary and secondary school Principals and community members.


During the ritual, Kildare College made a commitment to continue honouring the sacred connection that the Kaurna people have with the land that the College is situated on, and a commitment to keep the flame of Brigid, that represents the risen Christ, at the forefront of all that we do.


Marian College, Ararat

An insight into one of our Ministries

Opening of the Brigidine Centre

On Friday the 20th July we officially opened our new Brigidine Centre. Dan Tehan, Minister for Social Services, together with our very own Sr. John unveiled the plaque that dedicated this new building to the Brigidine Sisters who have supported the Marian community over the last 130 years this November. The new centre provides open-planned learning opportunities for our Year 7 students as they transition into secondary college.  The structure of the building is quite clever with four classrooms built around the original heritage building of St Mary’s hall. Staff and students have settled in well and are enjoying the new space.

Project Platypus

Over recent weeks as part of an environmental focus, students have been engaged with the local organisation Project Platypus to revegetate the link between the Black Ranges and Grampians mountain range. The intention is to build a corridor of bush land between the two ranges to support the wildlife and vegetation on land donated by local farmers. The students enjoyed the experience working with others of their age for cause that will have a lasting legacy for the area. Students do appreciate the wonderful opportunities the Grampians provide and our responsibility within creation to preserve and respect this environment for future generations.






Each year thousands of students from across the country perform at various locations to tell their story in the Australian National Story Dance Festival - Wakakirri. ‘Wakakirri’ is an aboriginal word that means ‘to dance a story’. Creation of these original dramas involves students thoughts, ideas an aspiration to bring together drama, dance, music, lighting and creative movements in a 3-7 minute performance on a professional stage. This year, our students performed ‘The Last Dance’, their own account of dance through the last 100 years. Under the guidance and support of Drama teacher, Mrs Teresa Tonks, students performed with confidence and enthusiasm for a packed audience at the Clocktower in Essendon. We congratulate all students involved and Drama teacher Mrs Teresa Tonks.


USA bound Maths and Science Scholar

We congratulate Year 12 student Brianne Cole in being selected for the Michigan Mathematics and Science Scholars program (MMSS) at the University of Michigan in June this year. Brianne was one of forty Australian students selected to attend this two week program in America over the term break. Brianne has also attended the Australian National Youth Science Forum in Canberra, a residential program designed to give Year 12 students a broader understanding of the diverse study and career options available in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Living on-campus and with access to great facilities and very experienced professors was a wonderful way for Brianne to explore the world of Science and Mathematics with like-minded enthusiasts.



Colour Run to School in Bangladesh

One of the real highlights of late last term was the Marian College Colour Run organised by our Year 12 students to raise funds for the Fred Hyde Foundation. The Fred Hyde Foundation builds kindergartens and schools in Bhola, one of the poorest areas of Bangladesh. In our first year we raised sufficient funds to build a kindergarten. Since then, our College has provided the annual running costs. The intention is to provide and encourage basic primary education for these children. This year our student leaders showed real innovation in their approach to this project by engaging as many of the local businesses and organisations of the Grampians region as possible in their endeavours. On the day of the Colour Run, the HMAS Ararat crew, who were in town for a flying two day visit before their return to Darwin, arrived to either run the field with our students and parents, or provide moral support from the sidelines.  This was a tremendous boost for our students. We are grateful for the very strong support across the community for this very worthwhile cause.


Staff Retreat

On the first day back Term 3 all staff were involved in the College Retreat. During the day staff explored what it means to be people of Hope and ‘bringing a sense of purpose’. Under the title ‘Hope is the Journey’, six teachers from the various age groups shared their life journey with staff, noting some of the key moments that had the greatest impact and insight for them. Hope was the recurring message for each stage of life and individual journey. The day ended with dinner together at the City Oval Hotel in Ballarat, sharing a few laughs and some very valuable time together as friends and colleagues.


Kilbreda College welcome Fr. Timothy Radcliffe op 

Staff reflection Day
9th August 2018

Kilbreda College welcomed Fr Tim Radcliffe, as well as Killester College, De La Salle College and some representatives from Star of the Sea College for a staff reflection day on the broad topic of Catholic Identity.  The second session focused on the hope we (as educators) offer our young people.  More than 400 people were gathered in the new auditorium at Kilbreda and it was such a strong a sign of unity to have four schools come together to listen to a wise and inspiring theologian give a humourous and humbling presentation.  He reminded us that every document in the new testament is about unity  and when we gather as we did on Thursday, we are the strongest symbol that there can be of humans living together in God.  we are God's people trying to do God's work. 


It was clear that we were in the presence of a  reflective man who has had many experiences where humanity proved itself to be both the best and worst of what we can offer. He showed us that despite the  fragility of the human spirit at times we are stronger that we believe .      

Formation Events

Board Members and Stewardship Council Induction Day

23rd June 2018

It was a privilege to meet our new board members and councillors during the annual Induction seminar.  Together there was an abundance of talent, skill and knowledge as well as people who have a heart for mission and who give generously of the time to ensure their ministry is well served.   The joy of the day was in the genuine listening, the sharing and the bond that comes with many moments of laughter.

Board Members and Stewardship Council Seminar

21st July 2018

Board directors, stewardship councillors, principals and trustees attended the annual Seminar day for those at the governance level of our ministries. Neil and Thea Ormerod were inspiring and challenging, in their presentation about sustainability and care of the earth.  Laudato Si is inspirign their work and the Kildare Ministries work on Justice Education.


Important Dates

Upcoming Events 2018

Land Transfer Ritual - Marian College, Ararat

13th August 2018


Land Transfer Ritual - Marian College, Sunshine West

14th August 2018


Land Transfer Ritual - Wellsprings for Women

17th August 2018







New Staff Induction Day

4th September 2018


Student Seminar in Presentation Family Centre

12th September


Land Transfer Ritual - Killester College

17th September 2018


Land Transfer Ritual - Clonard College

21st September 2018





Social Media

Kildare Ministries Newsletter