Home' The Southern Cross : November 2015 Contents Page 14 November 2015
Celebrating consecrated life
A former Adelaide parishioner has made her first
profession as a Dominican Sister at a ceremony in
Sr Martha Hackett OP was one of 13 young women
who professed the simple vows of poverty, chastity
and obedience as Dominican Sisters of St Cecilia
Congregation on July 28.
Sr Martha (pictured right) was a parishioner of Saint
Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, Newton, and is the
daughter of Mark and Annamaria Hackett, who are
parishioners of Holy Name Church in Adelaide.
She was home-schooled and worked for a sewing
company and ran sewing lessons from home before
she entered the Dominican Sisters of St Cecilia. She
is currently studying at Aquinas College in Nashville in
preparation for the teaching apostolate.
The Mass for the Rite of First Religious Profession was
celebrated at the Cathedral of the Incarnation in Nashville.
The Most Reverend David Choby, Bishop of the Diocese
of Nashville, was the main celebrant. The Most Reverend
Peter Libasci, Bishop of Manchester, New Hampshire,
concelebrated the Mass. The homilist was Reverend
Thomas Petri, OP of the Dominican Province of St Joseph.
In addition to the sisters making first profession of
vows, five young women professed their perpetual vows
of poverty, chastity and obedience with the Nashville
Dominicans on July 25, 2015.
The Congregation of Dominican Sisters of St Cecilia
was established in Nashville in 1860. The Sisters of
St Cecilia are dedicated to the apostolate of Catholic
education. The community of nearly 300 sisters serves
in 35 schools throughout the United States, with mission
houses also in Sydney, Australia; Vancouver, British
Columbia; Bracciano, Italy; Elgin, Scotland; and Sittard,
The Netherlands. St Cecilia Motherhouse is located in
For more information on the Dominican Sisters of
St Cecilia Congregation, please visit their website at
Adelaide woman takes vows in US
This month we look at the work
of the Passionist Sisters of St
Paul in Adelaide as part of a
continuing series celebrating the
Year of Consecrated Life.
Two hundred years ago, Maria Maddalena
Frescobaldi Capponi founded the
Passionist Sisters of St Paul of the Cross
in Florence, Italy. She began her work with
women in 1811, however the first Sisters
took their vows in March 1815.
The order was named the Community of
the Handmaids of the Passion of Jesus
Christ and Mary the most Sorrowful
Mother but it is commonly referred to
as the Passionist Sisters. The Order’s
charism is expressed with a special vow
to live, bear witness to and promote the
commemoration of the passion of Jesus
and the sorrows of Mary.
Maria Maddalena founded the community
with four young converted prostitutes.
She was a charitable and well-educated
woman, daughter, wife, mother and later
a grandmother. She was inspired by
the Holy Spirit to begin a community of
women who would search out lost souls
and bring them back to Christ Crucified.
Pope Pius VII encouraged and blessed her
Maria Maddalena dedicated her life
and her sisters to reclaiming those
poor young women who, because
of their great poverty caused by the
political situation in Italy, had fallen into
prostitution. The mission of the Sisters
broadened to include helping young
women and children, half-way houses,
schools, orphanages and homes for
physically challenged women. It continues
to this day to serve the needs of all people.
The Passionist Sisters are very new to
Australia and are currently present in
Sydney and Adelaide. The Sisters arrived
in Sydney on November 22, 2000 and in
Adelaide on January 22, 2002. There are
10 Sisters in Sydney and five Sisters in
The Sisters came to Adelaide to work with
the Passionist Fathers and brothers in the
retreat centre and parish at Glen Osmond.
At the moment they are involved in
working in parishes as pastoral associates
and in schools as chaplains, pastoral
support workers and counsellors.
The Sisters work at St Paul of the Cross
parish (Glen Osmond/ Parkside), Emmaus
parish (Kingswood, Goodwood, and
Colonel Light Gardens), St Martin De Pores
parish (Hallet Cove), Christian Brothers
College, St Michael’s College and Sacred
Heart Middle School.
The Passionist Sisters respond by their
mission, rooted in the memory of the
passion of Jesus and carried out in the
different forms of educational-pastoral
service, according to need and the
socio-cultural and religious realities of the
Through prayer, education and life
witness, the Sisters attend to those who
find themselves in situations of greater
weakness and are on the borders of
alienation: women, children adolescents
and youth, especially those most at
risk, families and people deprived of the
meaning of life and of authentic values all
over the world.
The Passionist Sisters of St Paul
100 YEARS BY THE SEA: The Sisters of
Mercy celebrated 100 years since their
arrival in the seaside parish of Brighton
at Masses in St Joseph’s Church on the
weekend of October 17 and 18.
The Sisters also celebrated with the
St Teresa’s Catholic School community
on Thursday October 15. Sr Marie Ralph
delivered the reflection at the Mass
services and spoke about the pioneering
work of the Sisters in Broken Hill and the
expansion of their mission to Adelaide.
Brighton parish priest Mgr Ian Dempsey
and St Teresa’s School principal Peter
Mercer presented a papal blessing from
Pope Francis to the four Sisters living in
the parish today, from left: Sr Marietta
Green, Sr Mary Mutlow, Sr Marie Ralph
and Sr Pat Phillips.
DEVOTED: The Passionist Sisters of St Paul ministering in the Adelaide diocese are: (L-R) Sisters Jimsy Maria John, Jasmine
Lawrence, Joan Mary Topor, Kanistal Soosai and Nithya Rayappan.
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