Holy Rosary Parish in Nedlands farewelled the Jesuits last weekend, but Australian Provincial Fr Brian McCoy said it wouldn’t be the end of the Province’s involvement in Perth.
The Jesuits have resided in Nedlands parish for 10 years, with Fr Joe Sobb SJ serving the community for the last six years. However the decision was made to withdraw from the parish last year, following a review of the Province’s parish commitments.
Fr McCoy joined the parish community for the Saturday vigil and Sunday morning masses. He paid tribute to Fr Sobb for his service, expressed through his love of scripture, sense of humour and care for liturgy. He also acknowledged previous parish priests Frs Theo Overberg SJ and Gregory Jacobs SJ.
Perth Archbishop Timothy Costelloe attended the Sunday morning mass, and spoke at the morning tea afterwards. He thanked the Province for its support for the people of Perth for the last eighty years, from the establishment of St Louis’ School in 1938, right up to its ongoing involvement at John XXIII College.
Fr McCoy thanked the parishioners for their generosity and support over many years, expressed in many aspects of the parish.
He noted the Province’s connection to the Perth community would continue through the Christian Life Community (CLC) and through John XXIII College, while Fr Michael Hansen SJ would also be bringing the First Spiritual Exercises to the Archdiocese soon.
‘While this weekend signalled our moving out of an institution, I hope it will free us to offer to lay people more of what lies at the heart of our charism – Ignatian spirituality’, said Fr McCoy after the gathering.