The Catholic Weekly 12 July 2020 $2 12, July, 2020 WAS GRANDPA ALSO A STIGMATIST? INTERVIEW WITH CHOSEN STAR P4 It is with great joy, as we return to liturgical ‘Ordinary Time’, that our lives are also slowly reverting to their more ‘ordinary’ state ... These past few months we have felt like the Jews in the Babylonian exile, una- ble to visit the Temple in Zion.” Archbishop Fisher OP MANY CATHOLICS returned toMass across NSW last week- end for the first time in more than three months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Further easing of restric- tions in the state from 1 July allowed churches to open their doors to significantly-in- creased congregations under the 4 square metre rule. Hundreds of worshippers gathered at St Mary’s Cathe- dral while observing social distancing and the now-nor- mal hygiene precautions as reiterated by Archbishop An- thony Fisher OP in his latest pastoral letter related to the pandemic issued last week. “It is with great joy, as we return to liturgical ‘Ordinary Time’, that our lives are also slowly reverting to their more ‘ordinary’ state”, the archbish- op wrote. “These past few months we have felt like the Jews in the Babylonian exile, unable to visit the Temple in Zion.” As parishes continued to transition out of the March and April lockdown, some opted to continue live-stream- ing Masses for those unable to attend due to health or space concerns. Others announced they would discontinue live-streaming in favour of celebrating extra Masses, or because their church can easily accommodate greater numbers under COVID-safe rules. The Dean of St Mary’s Ca- thedral, Father Don Richard- son, said he noticed worship- pers were diligent about using hand sanitiser and maintain- ing proper distances between each other. “I think there was a high awareness among those who came to Mass that the virus is still around and there is a need to be very responsible when gathering at church, for the sake of the whole commu- nity,” he said. “Some spoke of friends or relatives who did not feel ready to come to Mass yet be- cause of their age or health, ‘Beautiful to be back’ At St Mary’s Cathedral and parishes across Sydney, Catholics delighted to have increasing access toMass ¾ ¾ Marilyn Rodrigues Deacon follows in siblings’ steps NOLA DRUM makes no se- cret of the fact she prayed regularly for more priests, brothers and sisters … she just had no idea her prayers would be answered quite so close to home. The mother of nine boasts three children who have entered religious life with son Steve (pictured above) , ¾ ¾ Debbie Cramsie a Verbum Dei Missionary, being ordained to the diaco- nate by Bishop Terry Brady next weekend at St Charles Borromeo Church at Ryde. Her daughter Rosie is a Sister with the Missionary of God’s Love and her son Daniel, also a Verbum Dei Missionary, is hoping to be ordained later this year. The three siblings agree they were very “fortunate” to be raised in a family that was open to promoting vo- cations, allowing them to be “exactly where God wants them”. “Actually I can remember mum saying ‘Please Lord feel free to take any of them’ … little did she know what she was going to get,” Sr Ros- ie laughed. REPORT P2 and who still need our pasto- ral outreach and support. “That is an important point: I think we are still a long way from our previous routine and in some ways that’s good, be- cause it pushes us, both clergy and laity, to be more atten- tive, creative and engaged as a Catholic family and as a leav- en in society.” Berta Silva travelled from her parish of Our Lady of the Rosary in Fairfield to attend Sunday’s choral sung Mass at the cathedral. She said she was “very hap- py and grateful to God” for the opportunity to make the visit. “I feel very blessed this morning, everything worked out for me, I just decided to come and I was able to get in,” she said. “I’m very happy to be a Catholic Christian, nothing could make me leave my Church. “Our Church is persecut- ed in so many ways but God loves us and we love him.” St Mary’s Cathedral parish- ioner Ignatius Corboy said it was “terrific” to be back for the Mass. “It’s like resurrecting out of the tomb – or close to it any- way,” he said. “It’s beautiful to be back.” Cathedral Dean Fr Don Richardson preaches to his congregation under the relaxed distancing rules last Sunday. PHOTO: PATRICK J LEE P6