Saturday, August 05, 2006

We Are Church in Redfern

Well done Peter Lalor, journo at The Australian for his report on the Catholic Community at Redfern. The heading and byline of his item are an accurate report of what is happening in the famous parish which is associated with the late Mum Shirl and Father Ted Kennedy: John Paul's words a weapon in parish war

Lalor writes in reference to the image which has been painted by local people: (Picture: James Croucher)

Garry Griffiths, a Redfern resident for the past 48 years and one of hundreds of Aborigines who had slept for years in the presbytery with the former priest, Father Ted Kennedy, was one of the artists.

A member of the Kamilaroi mob, he painted his totems: an emu and a goanna. He helped put the tree around the former pope's words.

"We had nowhere to plant one so we painted one," Griffiths explained.

On Sunday, scores of locals turned up for the special ceremony to mark Pope John Paul II's visit 20 years earlier. "Mate, I was so proud, it was the best turn-up we've had here for a long time," Griffiths said. "Our people's faces lit up when they saw it." But Father Prindiville's face fell noticeably. It was the latest act of rebellion in Redfern's religious war.

For latest reports and responses to the incident at the Church, keep your eye on the Church Mouse blog.

On this site you will find a full report of the celebration of the reception of the Message Stick in the Church including the text of Frank Brennan's homily and blessing of the mural.

You can read another interpretation of the Redfern Community on Ephram Chifley's blog
Indigenous mural shock at Redfern parish
Priest denies Redfern church is "for the Aboriginals"
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