5th Sunday of Lent 2020

Bulletin 2020-03-29

Readings for 5th Sunday of lent

SUNDAY MASS from St Joseph’s Church – celebrated by Fr. Patrick will be available on the St. Joseph’s website www.saintjosephsbulli.com to watch on Sundays.

I ask you not to print the bulletin but instead forward this email on to those may not be on our email list.

Please encourage them to join the email list by contacting the office. This is the only safe way we can get all information to our parishioners.

I have been inundated with people offering support of ways to help all our parishioners through this trying time especially in the absence of the Sacramental life of the Church. Below are some links to places online that may be of benefit spiritually and mentally.

Bishop Barron speaks about how Catholics who are struggling with the absence of Mass services and receiving the Eucharist can find alternatives and additional ways to connect with their faith at this time. There’s some interesting discussion as to why God might permit evil to exist; and possibly some helpful ways to think about these challenges.


It is also available in podcast format if you would just prefer the audio. Just search ‘Word on Fire’ in your podcast app.

 Daily Mass is celebrated by Pope Francis and can be viewed anytime. http://www.catholictv.org/shows/pope-francis-daily-mass

 Prayer Resources for Individuals and Families

During this time of social isolation it is important that we pray and stay connected to our community. A range of online resources are available to assist with this. These include daily prayers and readings, prayer services, the Sunday Office, commentaries, homilies and reflections as well as Gospel based activities and resources to support personal and family prayer.

Type in browser: liturgyhelp.com/aus/woll/pray  and follow the prompts to access. Hopefully these resources will help create prayerful solidarity with our community and the whole Body of Christ.

 Most importantly take care of yourselves and one another.

I need to ask people not to visit the office but instead call or email and I will help you all out as much as I can.

 Continue to pray for all who are affected directly by this and join in the nightly 6pm prayer we can do as our parishes combine.

Planned Giving Envelopes:

During this period of time where Masses in the diocese are suspended, parishes are urgently in need the ongoing financial support of parishioners more than ever, as their overhead costs will not change. As the vast majority of parishioners give physically to their parish in the first and second collection baskets during Mass, we are encouraging all parishioners to join the electronic parish planned giving program. The Diocese has created a page with two simple options for parishioners to give to their local parish electronically. Please find this at www.dow.org.au

Or you can download the Direct Debit Planned Giving form here.

Please hold onto all planned giving envelopes and project compassion boxes for now.


Can you remember another time when the world was completely united against a common enemy? That which comes to isolate us, unites us. 

We have to do what we need to do take care of each other. For now this means those of us who can stay at home, need to stay home. Those who cannot – teachers, nurses, hospital staff, doctors, supermarket employees, paramedics, police and many others – we need to stay home for them too. This is important, but it has consequences. People will feel isolated or lonely, maybe anxious and sad. We are missing the person to person contact and with any loss it leaves a space.

A new online space, using Catholic.Social, has been created for parishioners of the Illawarra to help fill the void. We can be vulnerable, anxious, sad, scared and hopeful, together. Do not underestimate the impact of a message. This group is a community in which we can encourage and support each other through the challenging times and share and celebrate the good times.

Catholic.Social is a CATHOLIC, low barrier of entry, platform for online discussions with groups. It’s free and there are no inappropriate 3rd party ads or “related” content. It’s built with parish groups in mind and easy to use for young and old. 

At this time when we are having to physically distance ourselves from one another, and we must do this, it is faces and voices that are able to reach through the distance and uncertainty. It is not just through connecting with people we know, but also in the words of strangers that it can be felt we are in this together. 

Please click the link, sign up and request to join. Please forward this email to family and friends.


Please feel free to call or email if you have any questions, our details are below.

Looking forward to chatting with you.

God bless,

Pru Hall
Email   pruahall@gmail.com
Phone  0422 540 484

Mark Hall

Email   hallmarkaus@gmail.com

Phone  0423 119 984


4th Sunday of Lent 2020

Bulletin 2020-03-22


Updated parish directives as a result of coronavirus (COVID19) 19th March 2020

All Wollongong Diocesan public Masses suspended until further notice. Please read the message from Bishop Brian Mascord by clicking on the link below:



Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s address to Australia 18th March 2020

The focus for the Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments is the health and wellbeing of Australians and their livelihoods, ensuring that Australia is positioned to emerge strong and resilient from this global pandemic crisis.

Leaders met last night for the second National Cabinet meeting and agreed to further actions to protect the Australian community from the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

General Population – Indoor Gatherings

As part of our efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Australia, the National Cabinet has accepted further restrictions on gatherings.

The National Cabinet has accepted the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) advice that non-essential indoor gatherings of greater than 100 people (including staff) will no longer be permitted from Wednesday 18 March 2020.

  • An indoor gathering refers to a gathering within a single enclosed area (i.e. an area, room or premises that is or are substantially enclosed by a roof and walls, regardless of whether the roof or walls or any part of them are permanent, temporary, open or closed).
  • This does not apply to essential activities such as public transportation facilities, medical and health care facilities, pharmacies, emergency service facilities, correctional facilities, youth justice centres or other places of custody, courts or tribunals, Parliaments, food markets, supermarkets and grocery stores, shopping centres, office buildings, factories, construction sites, and mining sites, where it is necessary for their normal operation (although other social distancing and hygiene practices may be required in these settings).

The states and territories will give further consideration to practical guidance and rules for non-essential indoor gatherings of fewer than 100 people (including staff) such as cinemas, theatres, restaurants/cafes, pubs, clubs, weddings and funerals. This will be considered at the next National Cabinet meeting on Friday 20 March 2020. In the meantime these venues should continue to apply social distancing and hygiene practices.

  • This includes being able to maintain a distance of 1.5 metres between patrons. 
  • Hand hygiene products and suitable waste receptacles need to be available, with frequent cleaning and waste disposal.

This may require significant changes to the operation of some venues, such as reducing the maximum capacity or increasing the space available. 

3rd Sunday of Lent 2020

Bulletin 2020-03-15

Disciples School of Mission

The Disciples School of Mission (DSM) is fast approaching. The DSM Youth Ministry Training School will take place at the Mount Carmel Retreat Centre, Varroville, from 16th to 19th April 2020. After the school there will be opportunities for optional short-term missions to Darwin, Townsville and PNG. The school is a great opportunity to be formed in Christian discipleship and to be equipped for ministry and evangelisation. Over the past 20 years many young people have been strengthened in their faith journey and empowered for mission as a result of participating in the DSM and its predecessor the Asia-Pacific School of Evangelisation. Please encourage the next generation of missionaries to come and participate in DSM. The flyer for DSM is attached, and more information can be obtained at: http://www.disciplesschoolofmission.com.au.

Weathering the Storm – Sharing our Stories of Drought, Fire and Rain. Restoring Life in Times of Crisis

Wednesday 18th March 2020

Daytime Session 9:30am – 3.00pm or

Evening Sessions 5.:0pm – 8.30pm

Everything is provided, just bring yourselves, your stories, your experiences. No cost to participants.

RSVP/Enquiries: Patricia Thomas, Grief Care: 9646 6908 care@griefcare.com.au or Sr Merrilyn Lee, Hartzer Park on 4861 3223, hartzprk@bigpond.net.au

SCARF Refugee Support is a Wollongong based organisation helping refugee entrants to build a sense of belonging and navigate the practical and personal challenges of starting a new life in Australia.

SCARF is currently on the lookout for a new home in 2020. We are looking for a suitable base that is reasonably close to public transport CBD fringe or a suburban centre accessible to SCARF community members.

We love the idea of having access to space (and ideally a kitchen) to run our activities and programs but we recognised the need to be flexible and pragmatic, and the importance of keeping operating costs low.

If you have any suggestions or are aware of any spaces that might be suitable for SCARF, please get in touch with Pippa Rendel at ceo@scarfsupport.org.au and, please feel free to put the extend this notice out to your local networks.

CatholicCare Staff Reunion To celebrate our 40th year, CatholicCare invites all previous staff members and volunteers of CatholicCare (Catholic Family Life Centre and Centacare) to attend a staff reunion,

to be held at the Wollongong Golf Club on Friday 27 March 5:30pm RSVP by 20 March on 4227 1122 or enquiries@catholiccare.dow.org.au

Parish Notices



Our diocesan implementation of step one


15 MAY 2020

My brothers and sisters

COVID 19 remains present in the community and is highly infectious. We need to continue to act with prudence, calm and hope. The NSW government has announced today that certain restrictions are being eased. The purpose of today’s communication is to direct you as to how we will implement this in our diocese.

Believing it to be the more prudent course of action at this time, and given the limitations on the number of people who could attend and the associated logistics, I have determined that the public celebration of Mass will remain suspended and churches will remain closed. This will be reviewed in two (2) weeks. The previously communicated dispensation of the faithful of the Diocese from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass remains in place.

This decision has been made for the safety and wellbeing of all involved – parishioners, clergy, parish staff and wider community. Therefore the current directives remain in place, except for the the changes in relation to the attendance numbers for weddings and funerals:

  • Weddings are limited to no more than ten (10) guests plus the couple, celebrant and assistants.
  • Funerals are limited to no more than twenty (20) mourners indoors and thirty (30) mourners for outdoor ceremonies excluding celebrants, funeral directors and assistants.

The government requirements for hygiene practices and physical distancing guidelines of one person per four square metres must still be adhered to at all times.

Please support your priests in understanding the need to comply with these directives so that we can act in a unified manner across the diocese. Again, I emphasise that this current situation will be reviewed in two (2) weeks. I will be communicating with you during this period of time to assist you in preparing for the next steps in this process.

I understand that this time has been challenging in many ways, however, it has also proven to be a time of grace and opportunity. I therefore encourage you to continue to engage with your parish through means such as live-streaming and other initiatives that have been implemented in the life of your community.

Yours in Christ

Most Rev Brian G Mascord DD
Bishop of Wollongong
15 May 2020

Message from Fr. Patrick Vaughan PP


Planned Giving envelopes

Please remember that we don’t currently have any facility for receiving your weekly planned giving envelopes. These contributions are vital for the running of our parish, so we ask that you hold them until things return to normal. Alternatively, you can contribute via Direct Debit by following this link: https://www.dow.org.au/plannedgiving/

Parish directives

(These directives replace all other directives issued up to the 15 May 2020)


Effective Midday 23 March 2020 in the Diocese of Wollongong:

  • Public Masses and liturgies—both indoor and outdoor—are suspended until further notice.
  • Mass will continue to be said privately by priests throughout the diocese on behalf of the faithful on a daily basis.
  • The faithful can keep holy their Sunday by setting aside some time for prayer at home, reading the Scriptures of the day, watching Mass on television or online, and asking God for the graces they would normally receive in Holy Communion (canon 87 §1 , canon 1248 §2).
  • Church buildings, adoration chapels and other church buildings used for prayer and religious services are to remain closed from midday on Monday, 23 March 2020.
  • Priests should consider continuing to publish their weekly parish bulletin online with advice and a weekly homily/reflection.
    Holy Communion is not to be given to anyone, including the sick, except as Viaticum for the dying.
  • Sunday Mass and Holy Week services will be celebrated privately by the bishop and made available on the diocesan website from the fifth Sunday of Lent (29 March 2020).


Baptisms should be delayed. If there is a risk of death, the child should be baptised in accordance with social gatherings limited to 2 persons.


The Sacrament of Confession will be suspended during this time of pandemic. Physical and moral impossibility excuses a person from confession, in which case reconciliation may be attained by other means, for example an act of perfect contrition. (Canon 960) An act of perfect contrition can be made by saying these or similar words, “My God, I am sorry for my sins with all my heart. I should love you above all things. I firmly intend, with your help, to sin no more, and to avoid whatever leads me to sin”.


Preparation for and celebration of First Reconciliation, Confirmation and First Communion for children should be postponed until the pandemic is over.


Weddings are limited to no more than ten (10) guests plus the couple, celebrant and assistants. The government requirements for hygiene practices and physical distancing guidelines of one person per four square metres must still be adhered to at all times.


Funerals are limited to no more than twenty (20) mourners indoors and thirty (30) mourners for outdoor ceremonies excluding celebrants, funeral directors and assistants. The government requirements for hygiene practices and physical distancing guidelines of one person per four square metres must still be adhered to at all times.


The Sacrament for the Anointing of the Sick will continue. However, for the protection of our most vulnerable parishioners, clergy have been given revised instruction on how to proceed.
Clergy should only visit the sick or infirm with COVID–19 in a hospital or aged care facility if requested by the patient, family or hospital personnel. Clergy are requested to contact hospital personnel to confirm that the appropriate precautions are met prior to administering the sacraments.


Holy Communion is not to be given to anyone, including the sick, except as Viaticum for the dying. If Viaticum for the dying is celebrated this is done according to the procedures for the anointing of the sick.


Extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion are not to take Holy Communion to the sick.
All parish meetings are to be suspended at this time.


All parishes and parishioners are required to follow social distancing and hygiene guidelines as provided by the health authorities, including:

  • Good hand and sneeze/cough hygiene.
  • Distancing of at least one person per 4 square metres
  • Self isolation if diagnosed with COVID–19 or when exposed to symptomatic or diagnosed COVID–19 persons.