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Sunday, August 19, 2018

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Fr Vincent McGillicuddy celebrates Golden Jubilee

Golden Jubilee

Fr Vincent McGillicuddy OMI

Fr Vincent McGillicuddy OMI was born in the Sydney suburb of Kogarah in 1930. He received his education at the local Marist Brothers College before studying to become a Chartered Accountant. He felt a call to join the Oblates and responded faithfully by becoming a member of the Oblate Novitiate Community at Sorrento in 1955. Priestly studies ensued, first at the Oblate Scholasticate in South Africa where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree and later in Rome at the Oblate International Scholasticate where he obtained a degree in Sacred Theology and was ordained a priest on July 12, 1962.

Back in Australia, Fr Vincent was destined to be a priest-teacher and was appointed to educate the senior youth at Iona College in Brisbane in mathematics, accounting and religious studies. He was to spend the next 24 years teaching at both Iona College and Mazenod College in Melbourne. For the remainder of his priestly life, he has been ministering in every one of the various Oblate parishes in each state opf Australia. As the ever-adaptable and ‘go-to’ man, he would also be frequently called on to fill in for s temporary parish vacancy. As another measure of his admirable Oblate spirit during this time – for a total of 13 years – Fr Vincent was also the industrious and competent Provincial Bursar. These days he can be found quietly ministering back in his home parish of Sefton.

What sort of a man, friend, Oblate, teacher, parish priest and bursar is Fr Vincent? I count it as a special act of providence that Vincent and I met way back on the day we were launched into the rigours of the novitiate year. His talents and abilities were immediately spotted by the Novice Master who appointed him Novice Prefect. From the beginning he showed himself to be a man of prayer, self-discipline and single-mindedness who expected the same from his youthful charges who had arrived straight from school! He was sports-minded (introducing him to Aussie Rules took a little longer), witty and with a good knowledge on any number of subjects. Later in the novitiate year, his wonderful people skills became more evident when he was visitied by family. I’ll never forget the beautiful care and love he showed for his mother as he took her by the arm and talked her through everything. Over the subsequent years, Vincent has made it his special mission to minister to the sick, house-bound and elderly. He has endeared himself to them through his genuine personal and compassionate love. He is quick to acknowledge the sacrifices his family made for him in the early years and during the Depression. This gift is evidenced in his years of priestly life by the acknowledgment, appreciation and remembrance of almost everyone he has ever met or cared for. By the same token, Vincent has made many close friends through his long involvement not only with grateful pupils from his classes and fellow teachers but also with members of the lay ecclesiastical organisation to whom he has been chaplain such as the Teams of Our Lady and the Cursillo Movement.

Vincent’s fidelity to his priestly and pastoral life, with his humble and calm disposition has endeared him to so many who count him as a respected and admired friend.

As he reaches this [priestly golden milestone we wholeheartedly join in celebrating Vincent the man of zeal and friendship. We salute you Vin and wish you Ad multos annos!

Fr Bernie O’Brien OMI

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