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Patrician Brothers students celebrate Mary in their parishes

Students and teachers from Patrician Brothers’ College attend mass at St Mary’s Assumption Chaldean Catholic Church in Fairfield for the school’s annual Back to Parish Day. Photo: Supplied
Students and teachers from Patrician Brothers’ College attend mass at St Mary’s Assumption Chaldean Catholic Church in Fairfield for the school’s annual Back to Parish Day. Photo: Supplied

To mark the Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary, a holy day of obligation in Australia, over 1000 students from Patrician Brothers’ College went “back to the parish” for Mass.

The Fairfield college holds the evangelisation event, officially called Back to Parish Day, each year in August for students between years 7-12 across nine parishes.

Patrician Brothers College Fairfield principal Peter Wade said the annual initiative aims to connect the students with their local parishes for the Feast of the Assumption.

“At Patrician Brothers’ College we believe in the importance of fostering meaningful opportunities for encountering Christ in the church,” said Mr Wade.

“Back to Parish is one of these great moments when we all recognise and share the beauty of our faith in our local communities and honour Mary, the patroness of our college”.

Celebrating local communities and the beauty of a diverse Catholic Church have contributed to students at Patrician Brothers’ from Western and Eastern Rites living side by side.

“Once a year, we have Romans, Maronites, Melkites, Chaldean and Syriacs going back to their parishes and living out the richness of the Church’s many liturgical traditions,” said Assistant RE Coordinator Marco Testa.

“Some of our staff and students opt for a parish or rite they have never been to and this can only reaffirm the wonderful liturgies we are so blessed to celebrate in this country.

“For the Catholic, it’s about meaningfully fulfilling a Holy Day of obligation; for the non-Catholic, it’s an opportunity to encounter the truth of our Lord in the Eucharist but for all, it’s the way in which we honour our Blessed Mother, whom we recognise in our College Motto – ‘Maria Duce’.”

This year was particularly special as students and teachers who were World Youth Day pilgrims had returned from Portugal which, as Mr Testa said, “was a beautiful way to continue ‘going with haste’ on the Feast of the Assumption.”

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