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History of St. Mary’s Church , Coomera


The first recorded coming together of Catholics in the Coomera River District was in April 1866. The church building was erected in 1890 at Upper Coomera. It was then extended and transferred to Oxenford in 1935, and Church1890moved to the present site at Upper Coomera in 2005.

 

St Mary’s became a separate parish in late 1997. St Mary’s Catholic Community is a growing vibrant parish catering for a diversity of age groups and ethnic backgrounds. Our two Mass centres are welcoming and community based..

Significant dates for the Catholic Church in the region

1860’s to early 1870’s —-Occasional pastoral Visits By Fr.Denis Fouhy.

 

1865 First Catholic Church in Logan Reserve district(near Woodridge)
1870’s Mass at Binstead Homestead Coomera

1875 to 1884 Part of Logan Mission

Logan Mission covers from Stradbroke Island ,St Helena Island and Cleveland to NSW border , Beaudesert and to Boonah

 

1875 Fr.Benedict Scortechni,a botanist, buys Masonic Hall in Yatala and converts it to the first Catholic Church in the Beenleigh District, It was opened by Bishop Quinn. Churches >opened in Tallebudgera 1878,Southport 1882,and Nerang 1882. Visit the Council of Heads of Australian Herbaria for a detailed biography of Fr.Scortechni
1875-1884 Fr.Scortechni visits the Coomera River on a 3 monthly circuit. Masses,baptisms funerals and weddings held at Siganto Home,Upper Coomera
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Fr.Scortechni
Pastor of Logan Parish
1875-1884

John & Elizabeth Siganto Collection:Local Studies Library,Gold Coast Council

John & Elizabeth Siganto
Collection:Local Studies Library,Gold Coast Council

1884-1891

Pastoral Care with Fr.Enright and Fr.O’Reilly

1884-1887 Fr.James Enright baptises in Coomera on his Circuit (he resides in Beaudesert)
1887-1891 Fr.Enright and his new assistant priest Fr.James O’Reilly baptise in Coomera on their circuits
1888 Fundraising for new Church on the Coomera well underway (25/2/88 The Southern Queensland Bulletin)
1890 New Church at Upper Coomera

1892-1980

Part Of New Southport Parish

1892 Logan Mission divided- Southport,a new parish including Upper Coomera Church and Beenleigh; Waterford part of Beaudesert Parish; Cleveland and Dunwich were attached to Brisbane
1935 Transfer of Upper Coomera Church to Oxenford

St. Mary’s Church being transported across Coomera Weir on the way from Upper Coomera to Oxenford , c1935
Collection: Local Studies Library, Gold Coast City Council

Saint Mary’s Church, Oxenford, circa 1935
Collection: Local Studies Library, Gold Coast City Council

1980-1993

Part of new Runaway Bay Parish

1980 St Mary’s Church reopened after local working bees (after having been closed for nine years)
1993 Bishop Cuskelly (November 10th) invites Vincential Priests to establish Oxenford Pastoral area. Vincentians agree on November 15th

RCIA begun locally
Church ramp constructed
Priest residence/office/meeting space rented in Helensvale (and later changed to rental at Oxenford until end of 1997)

1994-1997

Oxenford Pastoral Mission

1994 Fr Brian Spillane, Fr Bill Irwin, Sr Marie, Sr Fran
Weekend masses increased from one to three
Formation of mission leadership team ‘Vision’ Team
Ministers Circle formed. Ecumenical Pastoral Group formed
Care and Concern Group and Finance Group formed
1997

1997 to present

Oxenford becomes a separate parish (December 1997)

1997 Gerry Hefferan is appointed Parish Priest November
1998 Parish office/residence moves to Xanadu, Upper Coomera in January
1998 Parish twins with Soibada parish in East Timor
1999 Establishment of St Mary’s St Vincent de Paul conference
2000 Sr Moira begins as Pastoral Associate
2001 Local Covenant signed May 20th with St Mary’s Catholic Community Oxenford, Gold Coast North Anglican Church, Apostolic Church Australia, Uniting Church Coomera – Helensvale Linked Congregations
Opening of Jubilee Primary School
2005 Church building moved to the present Upper Coomera site
Opening of Assisi Catholic College
2006 Opening of St Mary’s Child Care Centre (run by Centacare)
2007 Fr Patrick Lim appointed administrator in November 2007
2008 Fr Adrian Sharp appointed Parish Priest
2010 Fr Antony Vadakara appointed Parish Priest in August 2010
2016 Fr John Echewodo appointed Parish Priest in June 2016

 

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Weekly Readings

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From Father John
Dear parishioners, visitors & friends,
 
In 1996, at the funeral of seven Trappist Monks who were brutally murdered in Algeria by some Islamic fanatics, the local Bishop Pierre Claverie of Oran, who was also murdered by the same people a few months later, said in his homily amongst other things, ‘if Christianity distances itself from the cross of Jesus Christ, its content and strength are lost to a certain extent. The vitality of the Church, her fruitfulness and hope, have their matrix and their roots in the cross of Christ. Nowhere else. All the rest is secondary, leads to illusions and pulls the wool over the eyes. The Church cheats herself and others if she acts like a worldly power, like a humanitarian organisation among other humanitarian organisations or like an enterprise of evangelisation with spectacular effects.’ The harsh reality of the crucifixion can often appear to impede on the deep mystery of the cross and even make the cross almost irreconcilable with everything Christianity stands for. But the truth of the matter is that Christianity rises or falls depending on how Christianity makes sense of the mystery of the cross. ‘If Christ, (who died on the cross), had not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and our faith is in vain,’ (1 Corinthians 15:14). The cross is not an emergency measure adopted by God when everything else had failed. The cross was part of God’s eternal plan for the salvation of sinful humanity. Jesus Christ embraced His death on the cross freely and with a generous spirit. “There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends, Christ says” (John 15:13). What was obvious as Jesus Christ took Peter, James and John with him to the Mount of Transfiguration, was that Jesus wanted to seek the approval of God before taking the decisive step to die on cross of Calvary. In the Nicene Creed we profess that Jesus is truly divine, begotten of the Father, consubstantial with the Father, “God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God.” “The Father and I are one, Jesus says” (John 10:30). They might be one but Christ never did anything without the approval of the God, Christ called ‘Abba, Father. “Obedience is an act of faith; disobedience is the result of unbelief,” Edwin Louis Cole once said. In the first reading, we heard of Abram. He was 72 years when God asked him to leave his present place and settle in a new country. Abram obeyed God, and God credited it to him as righteousness, (Genesis 15:6). Today, there are Catholics who are involved in anti-Catholic teachings. They want to be part of the Church but they hate the moral principles of the Church. Christ showed an utter obedience to God. The presence of Elijah and Moses clarified things for Christ. Moses received the Law from God on Mount Sinai and Elijah could be regarded as the greatest of the prophets. They were on the Mountain to give Christ the Ok. As Christians, an authentic and genuine life of freedom and liberation requires of us a profound transformation, and total metanoia. Christ constantly sought the face of God in prayer. Christ was in prayer, in union with the Father, and as He prayed, ‘the aspect of His face was changed and His clothing became brilliant as lightning.’ It is good that we have started the season of Lent. But we need to ensure that this year’s season of lent is special to us individually and communally. We need to be deliberate and intentional in our Lenten observances. Our prayers, fasting and alms-giving need to draw us into the mystery of our being, and into the depth of where we are physically and spiritually united with our God. Just as Peter, James and John descended from the mountain to resume normal living, I hope and pray that our Lenten journey may not leave us isolated but enable us to engage and make a difference in the life of people we meet beyond the walls of our Parish Chapel or the Worship Centre.
 
God bless you all.
Fr. John Ikechukwu Echewodo
Parish Priest
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Christmas 2016

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CHRISTMAS CELEBRATIONS 2016

All  events and holy mass  will be held at the St. Mary’s Worship Center, Upper Coomera

Saturday, 24th December (CHRISTMAS EVE)

4.30pm –  Carol Singing   | 5:00  – Holy Mass 

9.30pm –  Carol Singing  | 10:00 pm –  Holy Mass 

Sunday 25th December 2016 (CHRISTMAS DAY)

7.30am Holy Mass

9.30am Holy Mass

Saturday, 31st December (NEW YEAR’S EVE)

6pm – Holy Mass 

Sunday 1st January 2017 (NEW YEAR’S DAY)

7.30am Mass  |  9am Mass | 5pm Mass 

 

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Lenten Progam

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HOLY WEEK SCHEDULE 

SAINT MARY’S CATHOLIC CHURCH

COOMERA

Ash Wednesday – Mass at 7pm

Stations of the Cross – Every Friday at 7pm

Mass Times :

                (NO 5 PM EVENING MASS ON EASTER SUDAY)

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Christmas Message from Archbishop Mark Coleridge

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