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He Gave Us the Name of Mary



Australian Marist Schools Conference

22/08/2013: Australia - Photo gallery

Every two years, the members of the leadership teams of our Marist schools in Australia come together for a major conference.  Between 28 and 31 July, over 200 Marists gathered in Cairns for an event that was given the theme “He Gave Us the Name of Mary”.  It was an inspirational Marist event, and made even more so by the presence of the Superior General, Brother Emili Turú.

During the days of the Conference, Brother Emili led the participants on an extended reflection and discernment which was inspired by his Circular.  Using the three icons of the Annunciation, Pentecost, and the Visitation, he emphasised the central importance of interiority, community and service for all Marists.  The symbol of the “apron” became a motif for Conference, and with it the call for us as Marists to be the “Church of the apron”.  As part of the final commissioning liturgy, each person was presented with an apron to take home as a reminder of this essential Marist characteristic.

A number of other people made presentations and led workshops which addressed Marian Scriptural themes as well as practical ways in which Marists in schools and youth ministry are being the Marian face of the Church. On the final day, the Provincial, Brother Jeff Crowe, crystallised what it meant for people to be the Marcellin-figures in their school communities today.

During the Conference, the Province launch of the Second International Marist Mission Assembly also took place.  The participants considered the theme of the Assembly – New Marists in Mission ­– and discussed ways in which the local preparatory phase would take place between now and May 2014.

A highlight of any of these Conferences is always the quality of the prayer and liturgy.  This was certainly the case for this year’s gathering, culminating in a beautiful Eucharist at the Cathedral of St Monica in Cairns, led by the local Bishop and priests from our Marist schools who were attending the Conference.

The 200 Marist educators – lay, priests, brothers, and sisters – left with the Song of Mary on their lips, uplifted by their days together and inspired to carry on their mission of evangelisation and education in hopeful and daring ways.

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