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Fms vocation weekend-nurturing new hearts for a new world


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16/09/2009: Australia



The weekend of June 26-28 saw the coming together of seven young men in discernment from both the Melbourne and Sydney Provinces for the bi-annual fms vocations weekend at The Hermitage, Mittagong. In what has become somewhat of a tradition, the weekend provided an opportunity to reflect, discern and contemplate the possibility of the vocation of the Marist Brother in the peaceful and tradition-steeped surrounds offered by Mittagong.

The weekend consisted of input by Brothers Michael Flanagan and Tony Leon as well as from the young men in the initial stages of formation, Patrick Connell (Novice, Canberra), Gerard Barklimore and Daniel Lynch (Postulants, Lidcombe). The group revelled in the resurrection of the time-honoured novitiate tradition of Saturday morning manual work on the farm and the opportunity to don the wading boots, fire up the tractor, and pile into the back of the ute on bails of hay under the stewardship of farm manager, Brother Frank Elvidge.

A special acknowledgement must be made of the Brothers who organised and facilitated the weekend: Tony Leon, Michael Flanagan, Greg McDonald and John Thompson from the Sydney Province as well as Doug Walsh, Tony Caddy and Peter Walsh from the Melbourne Province. The group also enjoyed the warmth and humour of Father Brian Mascord who celebrated Mass for the group on Saturday evening. A special mention must be made of Brother Michael Akers, Director of the Hermitage, for his continued and generous support of the Vocations Ministry and the young men who walk this road less travelled. We are indebted to these men and indeed a large number of other Brothers throughout the two provinces for their continued support, encouragement and invitation to contemplate, share and be part of the mission of “making Jesus Christ known and loved in the way of Mary” as Marist Brothers.

While our future cannot replicate our past, the Marist picture in Australia is incomplete without the presence of a group of Brothers. Our vocations weekend has yet again revealed that there is a genuine willingness from new hearts to explore the vocation of the Marist Brother and to carry forward and develop the legacy of generations of brothers, past and present to a new world.

Daniel Lynch
Postulancy, Lidcombe

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