Brisbane Oratory News
We would like to apologise to anyone who may have called the Oratory recently and had no response. It has come to our attention that our phone line was down, but we are happy to report it is now up and running again.
Recently, Archbishop Mark Coleridge instituted Brothers Tyson, Conor, and Matthew into the Ministry of Acolyte, a necessary step on the path to ordination, along with the Ministry of Lector which the Brothers received last year. As Acolytes, the brothers are called to grasp the spiritual meaning of public worship so that they may better offer themselves to God and grow in love of the people of God especially the weak and the sick. We are very excited that the brothers have taken this next step on the way to ordination to the priesthood.
During the Institution, Archbishop Coleridge reminded the brothers that as Acolytes they are called to give a particular witness to the faith and seek to imitate the martyrs who witnessed to Christ to the point of shedding their blood for him. The brothers were encouraged to live their faith to the full, witness to Christ, and to engage in works of mercy, especially for the weak and the sick. Please pray for the brothers as they strive to imitate Christ and be faithful to Him.
After the institution, the brothers went right into serving as the congregation gathered for wine and cheese to help celebrate this special occasion. We are also grateful to those in attendance who also decided to bring along some food to share. It was a wonderful time of fellowship and enjoyment for all.
When we learn about the Life of St Philip, something that stands out was his concern for aiding young people in holiness. St Philip realised how important it is to help young people to grow in their faith and virtue while they are still young! Often Philip could be found gathering young men to play sport together, keeping them out of mischief, or leading young people on pilgrimages and engaging them in spiritual conversations. Wherever he went people flocked to him. Here at the Brisbane Oratory, we have several groups and events for young men, young women, and youth. In this months Newsletter, Fr Andrew gave an update on these groups.
Our Frassati fraternity for young men has seen a change of leader in the last two months, as Dylan Shogren has now joined the new traditional Benedictine foundation of monks in Tasmania as an Aspirant. Dylan has been succeeded by his brother Jerome as the new Frassati leader and Jerome is proving to be a gifted and natural leader just like his brother. We have eleven men resident in the houses right now, with each of them either working full time or studying and working part time. There is a wonderful spirit of mutual support among these young men as they seek to grow together in faith and virtue in imitation of Our Lord and Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati. Some of the activities of the Frassati members include an early morning rosary together each day and regular Eucharistic Adoration. They also have a dining in night each week along with a monthly dinner together at the Norman Hotel where they gather with other men connected to Frassati in various ways. Each of the Frassati men also contributes to the Oratory Parish in some way, usually as either an altar server or choir member.
Our young women’s group Flores Teresianes (flowers of Therese) holds monthly dinners hosted by members in their homes. There are usually around 25 ladies present for these evenings, which also include a short talk of particular interest to young women relating to the Catholic faith and spiritual life. The Flores ladies held a successful retreat day in April at Marian Valley, with another retreat day planned for Advent this year. Flores is led by a leadership team comprising, Bernadette Tomlin, Elyse Beck, Catherine McDowall, Phillipa Hewitt, Michelle Nally and Ally Doig.
The Frassati Youth Group is for our young people from 12 years of age until they turn 18. Once they have turned 18 they are invited to join either Frassati or Flores and continue their path of growing in the fullness of the Catholic Faith. Frassati Youth meet weekly during School terms except on the first Fridays of the month. The young people have time socialising together over Pizza or Fish and chips at the beginning of their meetings. They then have some games together, followed by a short talk on the Faith or spiritual life. The evenings always conclude with a rosary together. Frassati Youth has some new faces in its adult leadership team this year including Chris and Taylor D’Silva as our coordinators and several other leaders who also generously give of their time to help our young people grow in faith and Christ like love.
From the Reflection of the Oratory Newsletter. If you would like to read the rest, and even more, including the Moderators Message, be sure to read the latest newsletter and don’t forget to subscribe!
During the Octave of Pentecost and the evening before St Philip’s day, we joyfully received a new member into our congregation!
Hung Nguyen, originally from Adelaide and more recently from Melbourne, has been an enquirer to our community for some time. In recent months he has been in residence with us in Brisbane. Following his formal application to join we happily received him as a novice. In many Oratories, some members decide to take new names and in order to mark this change in his life, Hung asked to receive a new name and was given the name John Henry.
After the formal vote to accept the new candidate, Hung was presented to the moderator and community in our chapel. After a prayer to St Philip Neri, the candidate formally asks to join the congregation and states his intention to cultivate the spirit of our congregation. After singing the Veni Creator, each member of the community welcomed our new novice Br John Henry with the pax or kiss of peace, and rejoicing we sing the Te Deum in praise of God.
Br John Henry will now be sent to an established Oratory later this year in order to undertake his spiritual year and be formed in the Oratorian way, following in the path of the four brothers before him. Like the other four brothers, Br John Henry belongs to the Brisbane Oratory, and while much of their training takes place overseas, they belong to our community in Brisbane where they will return with their Oratorian formation.
As one of the largest and fastest growing Oratories in Formation, we praise God for all the blessings He has bestowed upon us by sending new vocations and providing for our needs. We would also like to thank our benefactors for their financial support and prayers which are so essential to our growing community. Please keep Br John Henry in your prayers as he enters into the next stage of formation and discernment.
On the 26th of May 2018 the Brisbane Oratory celebrated St. Philip Neri’s feast day with a Solemn High Mass. The feast day of the Oratory’s holy founder carries an extra significance for our community as it is also the anniversary of our establishment by Archbishop Mark Coleridge on May 26th 2015. The third anniversary of our Oratorian community is a milestone of great importance in our very short but blessed history. Once an Oratory has been established for three years it is free to begin petitioning the Holy See to seek pontifical status. The celebration of the third anniversary is a strong testament to the community’s ability to live and thrive in the place in which has been planted. The occasion was a fitting opportunity to give thanks to God along with all our faithful and supporters for all His graces that have guided us to this significant moment.
The feast of St. Philip Neri and the Brisbane Oratory in Formation's 3rd anniversary celebrated at Mary Immaculate Catholic Church
The Solemn Mass was followed by a party in the parish hall with plenty of food and good cheer. It provided an occasion for people to meet the Oratory’s newest blessing, Hung Nguyen who is now Br John Henry. Br John Henry had been officially accepted as a novice into the community on the previous day. Brs Conor and Matthew were also present for the occasion fresh from successfully finishing their time in Toronto and along with that their philosophical studies. On the occasion of this significant anniversary we continue to pray, through the intercession of our holy father St. Philip that God will bless us and bring to fruition the work He has already begun.