From the afternoon of the 31st October until the morning of the 1st November, the Camberwell communities celebrated the 200th Anniversary of our Oblate Constitutions and Rules. The St Mary’s seminary community, joined by the Provincial House community, held afternoon and evening prayers along with a celebratory dinner and night prayers on the 31st October to usher in this historic celebration. At 3:00pm the seminary community prayed their first prayers in their very new seminary chapel. At 5:00pm they were joined by the Provincial House community and young men associated with the Oblates in Victoria. This was followed by a three-course Provençal dinner, which celebrated in true french style, this wonderful anniversary harking back to the original days of our order in Provence, France. That evening, the office for All Saints was read and vigil prayers were said to conclude the evening. The next morning, bright and early, the Provincial and Council joined the Seminary community for morning prayers and mass, which included the blessing of new vestments for the chapel. The mass for All Saints Day commemorated all our Oblate saints and the great missionaries who have gone before us. We concluded with adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, the renewal of vows and benediction from Fr Peter Daly OMI, Provincial of Australia. The newly re-established seminary community was very privileged that their first night in their new residence coincided with these great November feasts and the historic celebration of our 200th Anniversary of the Rules. May this celebration be just the beginning of the joy and generosity offered by the seminary community.
All around the Australian Province, the 200th Anniversary was celebrated, with adoration and prayers being shared with the parishioners of St John Vianney’s, Springvale North; students at Iona College and Mazenod College VIC were led in adoration and an insight via powerpoint into the first 10 rules of the constitutions. It was amazing to see many lay people with whom we work and minister sharing in this great occasion with us too.