We strive to be a community of faith and prayer, healing and love;
where every person’s gifts serve to bring about the Eucharist in the Church and in the World.
Our Lady’s Church
St Teresa’s Church
Reconciliation: St Teresa’s 10:30am and 5:15pm Saturdays or by arrangement
Lord Jesus Christ, Divine Saviour, You build your holy Church upon the foundation of love expressed by Simon Peter and you taught us how to love others as you have loved us. Be with us as we build our local Church in the Diocese of Port Pirie. May your presence strengthen our will to serve you and support one another. Come and stay with us in our homes. Let your presence in our families help us to refresh our “domestic church” with your gift of love. Open our ears to hear the voice of our neighbours crying out for your support.
Asking for your presence in our local communities, we ask your blessing upon our endeavours of supporting young people through the ministry of our Diocesan Youth Ministry. May their efforts help young people courageously open their hearts to God’s gift of love, give them strength to face any challenges in their life, knowing that with God on their side they can achieve great things. For it is in you, O Lord, we place our hope and trust. AMEN
Parish Priest: Fr Brian Mathews
Pastoral Associate: Sr Anne Higgins OLSH
Child Safe Contact Person: Helen Whyte
Although the foundation stone was laid in 1965 and the church built, it was part of St Teresa’s Parish until 1969, when it became a parish. In May 1969 Father John Curran came to OLHC from Hawker where he had lived in a large sprawling presbytery. In Whyalla, he resided in two small rooms attached to the back of the Church and sacristy.
In his time the parish egg cartons were collected to help sound-proof the confessionals. The Church seats banged whenever the congregation stood up and the Church floor had to be polished with a beast of a polisher. In 1972 Father Laurie Quinn took over from John. In 1972 Vinnies opened a new centre in Toal Street and the following year the Missionary Sisters of Service moved into their new convent at the end of Toal Street. Our new parish priest Father Arthur Hackett arrived from Coober Pedy in February 1974 and moved into the “bed-sitter”.
In 1975 a house was purchased in McRitchie Crescent to be the new presbytery. Soon afterwards, Sister Jill O’Brien, a Good Samaritan nun, arrived as a pastoral assistant, which was a new innovation in the Pirie Diocese. It was also in this year that all the nuns moved into the convent at Our Lady’s.
At the time most of them worked at the Catholic schools. The era of that rare species-‘The Half Curate,’ who was shared between the two parishes came to an end in 1977 when Father Leon Quinn arrived as our first full time curate. He was with us for four years. Gradually material changes began to take place, and by 1979 the altar area was carpeted, there were curtains for the windows and across the sanctuary, the altar boys were wearing new brown cassocks and we were using an overhead projector.
In 1977 the pastoral care of Kimba and Iron Knob were given to Whyalla West Parish and this lasted until 1986. In 1979 we celebrated Father Hackett’s Silver Jubilee with a packed Church. In that year our Catechumenate Programme was introduced and in the next year we saw the famous Blue Bath which was used for Baptismal Immersion.
The OLHC School was always an important part of the OLHC parish and changes were happening there also, with Mrs Audrey Walsh and then Peter Cibich becoming the first lay principals, In 1978 all religious instruction for State School children, was carried out at Our Lady’s.
1981 also saw a new crucifix commissioned and placed in the Church and our Book of the Dead was introduced in 1980. This year we also farewelled Father Leon Quinn and welcomed Father Paul Quirk for a few short months, followed by Father Chris Warnock. The next year we farewelled Sister Jill who was replaced by Sister Rita Fitt.
The eighties were a busy period with Parish retreats, picnics, Open Days and P. E. T. classes, not to mention carpet for the Church and new chairs-no more banging seats! We also held Planned Giving dinners and had a Mission given by Redemptorist Priests and small faith groups were formed. There was a successful Coming Home Programme for those who had left the Church, and music groups were formed.
Father Leon Quinn returned in 1986 to introduce the Renew Programme. The Drop- In Centre was opened. Anointing Masses were introduced and the Blessed Sacrament was taken to the housebound, and Children’s Liturgy was begun. Before the end of the eighties Sister Glenys Dellamarta arrived. The parish aim was to form a community in which leadership and pastoral care is shared and there is a constant movement from the faith community towards the larger community of Whyalla.
Who is a Christian Steward? A Christian Steward is one who receives God’s gifts gratefully, cherishes and tends to them in a responsible and accountable manner, shares them in justice and love with others, and returns them with increase to the Lord.
In the Whyalla Catholic Parish, we are all Christian stewards. We are a community of faith: a people of God who are formed by the New Covenant in and through Christ. Each member of our parish shares in the responsibility for its mission, each is called to practice Stewardship of the Church. We are called to look outward and to place ourselves at the service of the entire community, especially those who are most in need. The Eucharist is both the sign and the agent of this expansive communion of charity.
As a stewardship parish our parish leaders and staff seek out and support parishioners in need and in their involvement in the ministries of the parish. As a community we encourage each other to develop a closer relationship with God. Consider volunteering and taking part in our existing ministries or suggestioning new activities that will help to expand the opportunities for all of us to use and share our God given gifts.
Genesis tells us God placed the first human beings in a garden to practice stewardship – “to cultivate and care for it” (Gn 2:15). The world and all the creatures in it remain entrusted to the care of men and women for God’s glory and the service of humankind.
In the Whyalla Catholic Parish, we are blessed to be part of a community that offers us many opportunities to share our faith and reach out to others.
The Thanks Giving Envelope Program is designed to help you make a financial decision, based on faith, as to how much you will contribute on a weekly basis. Giving on a regular basis by envelope or electronically enables the parish to better manage current expenses and more importantly, be able to prepare a realistic budget for the next year.
Whyalla Catholics offering a hand of support to prisoners in South Australian prisons.
Early in 2013 Father Khalid Marogi, the Bishop’s Assistant for Prison Ministry, challenged Whyalla Parish parishioners to become pen-pals to prisoners in South Australian prisons. Many prisoners have no regular visitors or mail.
Currently there are about fifteen people in the parish who regularly write to pen-pals in Pt Augusta, Pt Lincoln and Mt Gambier prisons. Pen-pals meet quarterly to discuss correct protocol in writing to prisoners. Two diocesan retreats for the prison ministry team have been held in Whyalla.
Our ministry offers support by regular writing to prisoners in South Australian prisons.
Group meets quarterly to discuss correct protocol to be pen pals to prisoners.
If interested in this parish ministry please contact us.
PO Box 95, Whyalla SA 5600
Ph: +61 8 8645 8023
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