Commitment to faith and service acknowledged

02/12/2013

Papal honours & Diocesan Medals of Honour 2013 News Story
Bishop Anthony congratulates recipients of the Papal honours (from left): Vince Graham, Ron Mulock, Assoc Prof Geoffrey Brooke-Cowden, Ellen Boissett, Sr Brenda Kennedy CHF and Reg Burns. Photo: Alfred Boudib

Dedication to the faith and service to the community were gratefully acknowledged when Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP presented six Papal honours and 35 Diocesan Medals of Honour after vespers in St Patrick’s Cathedral on Thursday 28 November 2013.

The Papal honours system dates back many centuries, with each honour having its own history and relevance in the life of the Church.

The Holy Father grants all honours and awards and the local Church has a role in promoting nominations.

The Papal honours system seeks to encourage aspirations and ideals of the highest standards and values within the Catholic Church.

The Diocesan Medal of Honour was instituted by Bishop Anthony in 2012. The medal seeks to encourage and recognise outstanding contribution and service by members of the diocesan community to work on behalf of the Catholic Church and society.

The medal is awarded for outstanding service to parish, the Diocese of Parramatta and the community.

Recipients of Papal honours:

Vincent John Graham, Knight Commander of the Order of St Gregory the Great

For distinguished service to the NSW Government in senior executive positions and as chairman and executive member of diocesan, school and parish councils and committees for the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta; most notably CatholicCare Parramatta, Institute for Mission, Catholic Education Office Parramatta, Mamre House at St Marys, St Dominic’s College at Kingswood, and St Nicholas of Myra Parish at Penrith.

The Hon Ronald Joseph Mulock AO, Knight Commander of the Order of St Gregory the Great

For exceptional service to the people of NSW through a long and distinguished career in public service, serving as alderman and mayor for Penrith City Council, and a decade in the NSW State Parliament; most notably as Member for Nepean, Penrith and St Marys districts, Deputy Premier, Attorney General and many senior ministerial posts and for his work in ministry to St Nicholas of Myra Parish at Penrith.

Associate Professor Geoffrey Laurence Brooke-Cowden, Knight Commander of the Order of Pope St Sylvester

For distinguished service to the wider and medical community in Australia in the development of education, processes and facilities; most notably establishing the Clinical Sub School at Auburn Hospital for medical students, Hills Life Education promoting healthy lifestyles, the Goodoonga Project providing medical facilities for Indigenous rural communities and in public service, serving as alderman and mayor for Baulkham Hills Shire Council.

Sr Brenda Kennedy CHF, Croce pro Ecclesia et Pontifice

For long-standing and distinguished service to Catholic Education in the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta in the development of curriculum, processes and facilities and as an executive member of schools councils and committees; and in ministry at St Paul the Apostle Parish at Winston Hills in pastoral care, as sacramental coordinator and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist. 

Reginald Peter Burns, Croce pro Ecclesia et Pontifice

For exemplary service over many years working in the finance sector for the Catholic Education Office Parramatta and as a member of the Diocesan Finance Council  for the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta; and work in ministry at St Patrick’s Parish at Blacktown as finance steward, reader, catechist and coordinating fundraising and social activities.

Ellen Mary Boissett, Medal Benemerenti

For extensive and dedicated service organising social and fundraising activities for parish communities across the Catholic Church in Australia; most notably the St Mary’s Cathedral Flower Festival and as an accomplished vestment maker and an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

A total of 39 Diocesan Medals of Honour were awarded in 2013. Bishop Anthony presented 35 medals after vespers in St Patrick’s Cathedral on 28 November.

The recipients of the medal are Catholics from across the Diocese of Parramatta who serve with distinction in ministry through their parish, Church agency, Catholic school or local community.

Terrence Baker

For dedicated services to music and the liturgical life of St Patrick’s Parish, Blacktown; in particular the financial growth and development of the parish, fundraising in excess of $1 million dollars through ‘Housie’ over a period of 15 years.

Peter Balnaves

For his significant contribution to the life and work of St Madeleine Sophie Barat Parish, Kenthurst, through his ministry as an Acolyte and catechist and his selfless service in pastoral care in visitation and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

Michael Beacroft

For more than 60 years of distinguished service to Catholic schools in the Diocese of Parramatta; most notably Patrician Brothers’ College, Blacktown, through organising fundraising events and fostering the development of Rugby League among the students with integrity and dedication.

Patricia Brush

For her outstanding contribution to social justice working with refugee and ecology groups; and for services to the life and work of St Madeleine Sophie Barat Parish, Kenthurst, in music ministry and pastoral care through visitation, bereavement support and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

Patricia Burns

For more than 50 years of dedicated service to St Patrick’s Parish, Blacktown, as a member of the Parish Council and through her work in ministry; most notably, passing on her deep love of faith as a member of the sacramental team and as a catechist.

Judith Burrett

For her outstanding contribution to arts and music in the local community of Penrith and the Blue Mountains; with the Penrith Regional Gallery and The Lewers Bequest, and as a member of the Warrimoo & Blue Mountains Choral Societies and Penrith Eisteddfod; and for services to St Finbar’s Parish, Glenbrook, as parish secretary and in the music ministry.

Br Joseph Byrne FSP

For more than 40 years of dedicated service to the parishes of St Patrick’s,  Blacktown, and St John’s the Evangelist, Riverstone, as a pastoral associate and in youth ministry establishing charismatic prayer groups and engaging in visitation to the sick;  also for contributing to the Blacktown and Riverstone communities, organising fundraising events, social and recreational activities.

Christine Clarke

For educating and nurturing musical talent in the wider community of Western Sydney, the Blue Mountains and across the Diocese of Parramatta; most notably the gift of her leadership and talent in more than 50 years dedicated service in liturgical music ministry in the parishes and schools of Our Lady of Lourdes, Seven Hills, St Joseph’s, Kingswood, and St Nicholas of Myra, Penrith.

Kevin Coorey

For longstanding dedicated service to the Harris Park Conference of the St Vincent de Paul Society, with particular focus on social justice, supporting and assisting the marginalised and disadvantaged, new immigrants and refugees, and as a witness in the community to his deep Catholic faith.

Louise Debeck

For distinguished service to liturgical ministry in the Catholic Church in Australia; most notably her work for World Youth Day 2008 in Sydney, the Diocese of Parramatta as RCIA Coordinator and member of the Diocesan Liturgical Commission, and liturgical and organisational skills at significant celebrations; and her service in liturgy and RCIA in the parishes of St Nicholas of Myra, Penrith, and St Finbar’s, Glenbrook.

Clem Gallagher

For outstanding service in ministry at St Patrick’s Cathedral Parish, Parramatta, most notably for his work in RCIA and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist and for his many charitable acts providing support to the sick and elderly.

Adel Ghali

For more than 20 years of exemplary service as member and chairman on various finance and building committees and councils for the Diocese of Parramatta, Catholic Education Parramatta , Corpus Christi Parish, Cranebrook, and Emmaus Retirement  Village.

William Patrick Gilbert

For outstanding work in ministry through the St Vincent de Paul Society across greater Sydney, in particular more than 30 years as a member of the Guildford Conference; and his selfless and dedicated work in pastoral care for the residents of Cardinal Freeman Village.

Bev Hackett

For her extraordinary work in the health and welfare industry; most recently in the Diocese of Parramatta as Clergy Health Care Coordinator where she demonstrates physical and spiritual dedication in her commitment to care for the sick and elderly members of the clergy.

Norman Hector

For outstanding service in ministry to St Patrick’s Cathedral Parish, Parramatta, as an Acolyte and member of the church choir; and modelling Christian values through his work in pastoral care, in visitation to Marian Nursing Home and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

Rita Hoes

For more than 40 years of dedicated commitment to liturgical music ministry for the parish community of Holy Family, East Granville; most notably the gift of her talent and devotion as organist and choir accompanist at parish and school Masses and celebrations, weddings, funerals and feast days.

Kay Horner

For her longstanding and continuous meritorious service in ministry in the parish of St Anthony of Padua, Toongabbie; most notably through her leadership as pastoral associate for 22 years and deep faith in initiating and coordinating the parish RCIA program; and also her work in pastoral care in visitation and as a catechist coordinator.

Helen Howard

For meritorious services to the Diocese of Parramatta as Principal Secretary to Emeritus Bishop Kevin Manning and Bishop Anthony Fisher OP; and her dedication and skills during the rebuilding of St Patrick’s Cathedral as an integral part of the fundraising committee and assisting in the organisation  of key diocesan celebrations and events.

Frank Jacobs

For forty years of dedicated commitment to the Parramatta Regional Council and North Rocks Conference of the St Vincent de Paul Society as member and Regional President working with the poor and disadvantaged; and his work in ministry at Christ the King Parish, North Rocks, as an Acolyte and in pastoral care through visitation and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

Maureen Jones

For outstanding service to St Madeleine Sophie Barat parish, Kenthurst, as a catechist and coordinator; and in pastoral care ministry organising with enthusiasm and innovation social functions and celebrations, and assisting in parish fundraising through the annual country fair.

Paula Kerr

For her significant contribution in Canon Law within Australia and beyond; most notably her services to the Regional Tribunal of Sydney (NSW & ACT) and the Parramatta Tribunal office and as an educator in Marriage Law in Australia and Fiji.

Sr Dymphna Kilbride FMM

For distinguished service to religious life in Australia in more than 40 years in ministry with Aboriginal communities in Alice Springs, Darwin, Mt Isa and the missionary Church in Papua New Guinea; and her commitment to pastoral care at Blacktown and Mt Druitt Hospitals and Our Lady of Consolation Home, Rooty Hill.

Josephine Marainna Knight

For 60 years of distinguished service to the local Parramatta and Hills district communities fostering the development of tennis among young people in Western Sydney;  also her committee work as member and President of Our Lady of Mercy College Ex-Students and dedicated involvement in the life of the parish and school communities of Parramatta, Castle Hill and Rydalmere.

Noreen Maclean

For 60 years of distinguished service to the local Parramatta and Hills district communities through her work in parish and school ministry; most notably as founding member and President of the Parramatta branch of the Catholic Women’s League, member of the St Vincent de Paul Society and dedicated pastoral care visitation and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist to Parramatta Nursing Home.

Kevin McInerney

For 50 years of distinguished service to the National & State Councils and North Rocks Conference of the St Vincent de Paul Society as a member, and executive roles including National and State Treasurer and State Vice President giving generously of his time and skills; and his work in ministry for the Daughters of Charity.

Frank Margerison OAM

For longstanding and distinguished service to Catholic Education in Australia as an executive member of councils and committees in parish and school communities across NSW; and his work in St Nicholas of Myra Parish, Penrith, in music ministry and pastoral care through visitation and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

John Edward Moore OAM

For his long and outstanding contribution to the wider community in Australia through his work with the National and State Councils of the St Vincent de Paul Society; most notably in executive roles as National and State President, ministry activities, debating and developing policy on issues of social justice and pastoral care.

James Newell

For 40 years of outstanding service to Holy Trinity Parish, Granville; most notably through his work with the Granville Conference of the St Vincent de Paul Society as President, as an Acolyte, in pastoral care through visitation and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist and in social justice assisting asylum seekers.

Gary Nicholas

For longstanding dedicated years of service to St Oliver Plunkett’s Parish, Harris Park; most notably through his work in fundraising and on the Parish Pastoral Council and Finance Committee contributing to the financial development of the parish.

Walter Thomas Payne

For his long and outstanding contribution to the wider community in Australia through his work in pastoral care ministry assisting people with disabilities, the blind or sight impaired, the sick and elderly; and in Our Lady of the Way Parish, Emu Plains, in fundraising and as an Acolyte and Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

Patricia Anne Phelan

For meritorious service to the Diocese of Parramatta supporting and promoting the Permanent Diaconate program; and involvement in St Oliver Plunkett’s Parish, Harris Park, as archivist, and through fundraising and pastoral care in visitation and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist.

John Mathew Portelli

For outstanding service in parish ministry, enriching and expanding liturgical music in the community of Holy Trinity Parish, Granville; and as archivist, in pastoral care to the elderly and sick and as member of the Parish Council, providing an exemplary role model of Christian faith in action to Catholic youth.

Joan (Dorothy) Renshaw

For longstanding dedicated service in her local Penrith and parish community of St Nicholas of Myra; most notably in music ministry using her musical talents as organist accompanist, founding member of Parish Council, work with the Catholic Women’s League as member and President, and pastoral care visitation to the sick and elderly.

William Ryan

For longstanding dedicated service to the parish community of St Anthony of Padua, Toongabbie; most notably through his considerable leadership and organisational skills as a member of the Pastoral Council and Finance Committee; and ministry with the liturgy and hospitality teams.

Maureen Anne Sewell

For long and distinguished service to the Church in Australia in administrative roles; most notably executive support in the Chancery Office of the Diocese of Parramatta, the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and Catholic Church Insurances Ltd.

Patricia Shelley

For longstanding distinguished service to the wider community of Western Sydney through her caring and compassionate work in pastoral care ministry; most notably as ‘Ward Granny’ at Westmead Children’s Hospital ICU, in Holy Spirit Parish, St Clair, through visitation and as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist and catechist, and volunteer roles at Mamre House and St Vincent de Paul Society shops.

Jack Smeal

For longstanding distinguished service to the Granville Conference of the St Vincent de Paul Society as member and President, establishing a junior conference at Delany College, Granville, focussing on fundraising appeals; fundraising for the school communities of Delany College and Patrician Brothers’ College, Blacktown, and for his ministry in Holy Trinity Parish, Granville, as an Acolyte.

Sr Susan Ward RSJ

For her longstanding and continuous dedicated and exceptional service to the life of the Catholic Church in Western Sydney; most notably as Pastoral Associate in the parishes of St Patrick’s Parish, Blacktown, and St Patrick’s Cathedral Parish, Parramatta; in her ministry coordinating the CCD ministry, sacramental and RCIA coordinator, fundraising, celebrations and events for the parish communities and fundraising activities for Josephite mission in Peru.

Sr Patricia White FMM

For dedicated service to religious life in Australia as one of the first Australians to join the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary working in missions in Australia, Ceylon and Papua New Guinea; and her work in pastoral care at Mt Druitt Hospital and Our Lady of Consolation Home, Rooty Hill.


Go to Papal & Diocesan Honours 2013 Photo Gallery


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