Welcome to another year and I hope 2019 is a good one for you. My main focus at present is planning the Carmelite Family retreat in collaboration with the Melbourne Lay Carmelite community. This will be on the Palm Sunday weekend in preparation for Easter and will be at the beautiful Santa Casa location in Queenscliff. If you are planning to visit Melbourne why not try to work around this date and join us! Numbers are limited so book early.
Below also is some news from Whitefriars College, Carmel Kew and Wentworthville.

The Carmelite Family Retreat which will be held at Santa Casa Retreat Centre in Queenscliff from Friday April 12th to Sunday 14th.  We are fortunate to have Fr Matthew McPhee (Chaplain to the Lay Carmelites) as Retreat Guide.  This retreat titled ‘Silence in the Carmelite Tradition- Making Space for God’ is open to all those who seek to learn more about the Carmelite Way of Community, Prayer and Service.  I can be contacted at family@carmelites.org.au or mob: 0419 503 421 for more information. Or you can book here: https://www.trybooking.com/470715

Whitefriars College Donvale
I attended the Whitefriars College Staff Day recently.  The theme of the key note address given by Rosemary Prosser was on the topic of Spirituality in the school setting.  Following the talk, small groups were formed  to discuss ideas and strategies on issues related to leadership in the Church – what followed was a very fruitful discussion. I thought this could be a useful method to reflect on the role of the family delegate if there was opportunity.

Fr Paul Cahill celebrated the mass and was assisted by Fr Paul Sireh who takes up his new appointment as College chaplain together with Br Sean Keefe.  Paul’s ministry will also  strengthen the collaboration between the college and the Carmelite family hopefully. Also, we remember Greg Stewart as ‘takes over the reins’ as the new Principal and wish him well.

Carmel Kew
I visited Kew Carmel last week and spent an afternoon with some of the sisters and a meeting with Sr Miriam who mentioned some of their spiritual offerings including retreats, days of recollection, talks on Carmelite spirituality and general pastoral hospitality.
There was as always a great interest in what we are doing and in particular at the Carmelite Centre.
Sr Miriam spoke to me about Carmel being a gathering space for pilgrims with its rich offering for people to seek times of silence and prayer. With Lent approaching, the community will prepare for an influx of some 500 or so people who meet at Carmel for the Annual Ecumenical Day.Carmelite Family Sydney
Paola Yevenes from Wentworthville Carmelite Family tells us about the beautifully renovated church being a place of reverence and friendship, and the bronze and wood of the specially commissioned liturgical furniture reflecting the warmth of community. Paola tells us also that the community is in full swing with involvement in the Plenary Council, and the Taize reflection evenings are deeply prayerful. The Youth Group has an exciting and promising future. What remains constant, though, is the Carmelite tradition of prayer and service, with ministries engaging in dedicated work and with very faithful people. The liturgies are well celebrated and the sacraments speak of relationship and renewal. A beautiful spirit in these offerings.

Carmelite Conversations 2019 – All Welcome

The Carmelite Library Book Review
Michelle Jones lives and works in the Porongurup Range in southern Western Australia. She is also a consecrated woman affiliated with the Carmelite Monastery of Quidenham in Norfolk, England. Her book on one of the contemplative nuns of that community has just been published: ‘The gospel mysticism of Ruth Burrows : going to God with empty hands’ (Washington, D.C., ICS Publications, 2018, ISBN 978-1-939272-51-5) It is the first full-scale study of Sister Rachel of Quidenham, i.e. Ruth Burrows, a woman described by Ronald Rolheiser as “one of the renowned spiritual writers of our time.”

Rolhesier says elsewhere in the book’s Foreword, “She challenges us to live a mystically driven life.” He answers his own question: “Can we be practising mystics? Yes, and Ruth Burrows tells us how … Mysticism is being touched by God at a level that is deeper than what we can understand, articulate, imagine, or even affectively feel.” The book follows her growing understanding of spiritual life before talking in depth about what she calls “the Yes of Jesus Crucified”. Michelle Jones opens up new ways of reading and understanding her subjects, which are Sister Rachel and the spiritual life itself.

Philip Harvey (February 2019)

The Carmelite Way Pilgrimage this year will be our tenth! Dates are 8-10 November 2019. It’s a perfect Carmelite Family experience so SAVE THE DATES and join us!

Monthly Musing
‘They made us reflect on our own eulogy – what would you want people said about you?’ This question made a big impression on Brendan Bolton (Carlton Football Coach) who  recently participated  in a nine-day Leadership course at Harvard University. He went on to say: ‘What it did is made you consider your working week as a leader and what influence you have on people not just for what you are teaching them but the personal connection’.
Something to ponder on and the influence we have within our Carmelite Family.Damien Peile
Provincial Delegate for The Carmelite Family
75 Wright Street Middle Park Vic 3206
T  0419 503 421  |  F +61 3 96991944
E  family@carmelites.org.au  | W www.carmelites.org.au