Apostolic Nuncio warmly welcomed to Bathurst
The Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Paul Gallagher, arrived in Bathurst on Saturday 28th June for a short visit, at the invitation of Bishop Michael McKenna.
The Nuncio led Evening Prayer at the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Carcoar and blessed the refurbished historical Kirkland Organ while he was there.
Archbishop Gallagher and Bishop McKenna then joined the Shalom Community and friends for dinner at Shalom, House of Prayer.
On Sunday 29th June - the Solemnity of St. Peter and St. Paul - a time when we reflect upon the connectedness of our local church with the Holy Father and the universal Church - the Nuncio was principal celebrant at the 10am Parish Mass in the Cathedral.
It was a cold, wintery day in Bathurst, but their was a very warm reception for the Archbishop, who joined parishioners in the Cathedral School Hall after Mass for a special morning tea, hosted by the Cathedral Parish and catered for by the Cathedral School's P & F Association.
The afternoon saw the Nuncio visit the Sisters of St. Joseph at Perthville, the Sisters of Mercy at St. Joseph's Mount and also the historic Chifley Home, where he was given a private tour by Bathurst Regional Council's Collections Manager, Mr Tim Pike. He also visited St. Catherine's and St. Vincents.
On Monday morning, the Nuncio visited St. Stanislaus' College before meeting and praying with the priests of the Diocese. In the afternoon, he met staff at the Chancery Office, Centacare and the Catholic Education Office, before the Mayoral Welcome at Bathurst Council Chambers that evening.
Bathurst's Mayor, Councillor Gary Rush, welcomed the Nuncio and spoke of the integral part the Catholic Church had played in the life of Bathurst since its settlement. He also spoke of the important historical and cultural significance of the restoration of the Cathedral of St. Michael and St. John. He said he didn't think there would be many people in Bathurst who hadn't had some connection with the Cathedral of St. Michael and St. John in their lifetime - whether for worship, weddings, baptisms or funerals. Councillor Rush also thanked the church for providing what he said had been a 'cornerstone' of education in Bathurst over many years, and for the opportunities offered to so many young people in Catholic schools here.
The Mayor presented Archbishop Gallagher with a beautiful painting of the Cathedral, which the Council had commissioned especially for him from well known local artist, Greg Hyde, as a momento of his visit to the City.
Photos from the Apostolic Nuncio's visit are available HERE