Moorebank was witness to the great love Catholics have for the Mother of Christ as devotees at St Joseph parish took part in a candle-lit procession in plain view from the busy Newbridge Road on 13 May.
Held in honour of Our Lady of Fatima, the Marian procession was preceded by a Holy Mass which was celebrated by Somascan Fathers Mathew Velliyamkandathil CRS and Chris de Sousa CRS, parish priest and assistant priest of St Joseph’s Moorebank and St Christopher’s Holsworthy.
Making the evening particularly special, a selection of readings and prayers were said in Portuguese and three children were chosen from amongst the families of the parish to dress up as the three shepherd children of Fatima and take prominent position in the procession.
“[Our Lady] continues to teach us that while we are sinners … we can rejoice in knowing that our prayers and penances offsets some of the evil that afflicts society.”
During his Homily, Fr Chris de Sousa CRS spoke on Our Lady’s apparitions at Fatima and its significance to us today.
“We are blessed that Our Lord Jesus Christ gave her to us as Our Immaculate Mother,” said Fr Chris.
“She continues to teach us that while we are sinners and the world is marked by much evil, we can rejoice in knowing that our prayers and penances offsets some of the evil that afflicts society.”
Fr Chris highlighted the fact that Our Lady did not appear to monks, priests or bishops but to three poor shepherd children who she had entrusted with her message of penance and prayer for the salvation of souls.
Following Holy Mass, the faithful were led out in procession around the grounds of the church and adjacent school amidst incense and candle light.
With a statue of Our Lady held aloft by four servers, the crowds of devotees gave beautiful witness to their Marian devotion as they recited the Holy Rosary and sang hymns dedicated to the Blessed Mother.
“It was a beautiful night and I was amazed at how many people from different cultures came together in prayer and devotion.”
St Joseph parishioner Maria Saur, whose daughter Cristiana came as one of the Fatima children, commented on how wonderful the celebration went, especially the candlelight procession and the three children dressed as Jacinta, Francisco and Lucia.
“This was our first procession to Our Lady of Fatima at St Joseph’s and I was so delighted to have attended as since childhood, I have been deeply devoted to Our Lady,” said Mrs Saur.
“It was a beautiful night and I was amazed at how many people from different cultures came together in prayer and devotion.
“We were blessed to have had Father Chris and Father Mathew to lead this solemn celebration, both managing to strengthen and solidify our devotion to Our Lady of Fatima.”
The procession concluded at the church where there was Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.
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