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2022 Year in Review

As we wrap up the year 2022, we wanted to celebrate all we have been able to achieve over the past 12 months. After the challenges of previous years, our parish family definitely made the most of the eased restrictions with the return of our favourite devotions and events and the introduction of new ones.  

We began by making the most of the Season of Lent and Holy Week. It all started with our Shrove Tuesday evening burning palms, burying the alleluia and enjoying a pancake supper at Holy Family Church. This launched 40 days of daily devotions and Masses, leading up to Holy Week. For those unable to join us in person (or looking for a little extra prayer time over Lent), we launched the Lenten Prayer Guide, ‘Into the Wilderness’. This was such a welcomed resource – additional reprints were needed!  

Come Holy Week, a great solemnity and beauty was brought to both churches. Holy Thursday saw the Altar of Reposes beautifully adorned; welcoming visitors for prayer from across the Diocese and beyond. After two years of restrictions, the Good Friday Cross Walk also returned. Parishioners, visitors, families and friends all came together to make a public testament of faith as we walked through the streets of Granville praying the Stations of the Cross.

It’s becoming quite clear that Holy Cross Parish loves a Procession! Alongside the Good Friday Cross Walk, two other processions were made available throughout 2022. Corpus Christi was marked with Mass, two opportunities for Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and a procession of the Blessed Sacrament. The Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary introduced a new initiative to – ‘Walk For Mary’. Parishioners processed a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary in candlelight from Holy Family Church to Holy Trinity Church. While people were encouraged in 2021 to ‘Walk for Mary’ in their local area amongst restrictions and lockdowns, it was amazing to join in 2022 and walk side-by-side.  

Another new initiative launched in 2022 was the Year of the Blessed Sacrament. Beginning Corpus Christi 2022 until Corpus Christi 2023, the Year of the Blessed Sacrament is a means to grow as a parish in our devotion to this most precious Sacrament. We were all encouraged to access the sacraments frequently, read the Catechism, pray the Holy Rosary and take up the weekly opportunities for Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. We look forward to continuing these devotions in the new year.  

2022 allowed us to celebrate the parish’s patrons as a community. Trinity Sunday was marked with a Parish BBQ following the 10AM Mass and in true Granville style – volunteers and food were plenty! The Exaltation of the Holy Cross, our parish feast day, was honoured with a whole week of devotions, titled Holy Cross Week – a week of prayer, Masses and devotions as we celebrated our patron. Most recently, the Feast of the Most Holy Family was marked with Masses across both churches.  

Holy Cross Parish connected beyond its boundaries throughout 2022. Some of the highlights include welcoming Fire Up Ministries to MacKillop Hall for a talk on the Theology of the Body, Holy Cross representatives stepping into Executive roles on the Eastern Deanery Council and parishioners representing our community at the Diocesan events such as the Diocesan and Deanery Pastoral Council Gathering and Safeguarding Luncheon. These events have helped Holy Cross Granville connect with others within the Diocese to share and work towards collaboration as a broader catholic community. 

2022 was also a significant year for our Sisters of Mary, Queen of the World with 5 of their sisters celebrating the 50th anniversary of their profession. The occasion was marked with Holy Mass at Holy Trinity Church, celebrated by Bishop Vincent Long, Fr Andrew and other visiting priests. Many people came together at the 10am Mass to celebrate this milestone in the lives of the sisters and then followed with a celebration held on the grounds of Delany College.

More recently we joined again over the Advent and Christmas seasons! The Red London Bus trip to St. Mary’s Cathedral was filled right away and all enjoyed the evening watching the Christmas light show! This has become a favourite way to connect as a community over food, laughs and a beautiful light display. The fun continued through the inaugural Carols by Candlelight Parish BBQ. Parishioners, visitors, families and friends filled the front of Holy Trinity Church as they drank, ate and socialised prior to the Carols by Candlelight Service. None of this would have been possible without the generosity, talent and time of the parishioners who cooked, set up, donated items and served. After we were all well fed, an amazing line up of musicians, singers and readers led us through an evening of Carols and readings preparing for Christmas. If you missed out on this evening, you can watch the event in its entirety right here: Carols by Candlelight 2022 – Holy Cross Parish Granville – YouTube 

It’s clear that 2022 was a much brighter year for Holy Cross Parish – and that’s not just because of our ability to connect in person once again! 2022 saw some much-needed restoration and repair work done to the churches and halls, including new lights in both churches. By committing to these restorations, it is hoped that both parish churches will welcome generations to come and continue to serve catholic in the Granville area well into the future. In the meantime, it’s pleasing to be able to welcome new Volunteers who came through our annual Volunteer Drive. They’ve joined the already existing team of volunteers who tirelessly serve the parish. Whether cleaning, reading, singing or serving – there are countless people that continuously help bring these devotions, events and liturgies to the parish.  

So that’s why we end this review with a massive THANK YOU. Thank you to each and every person who has shared their time, skill, and talents that have allowed 2022 to be another year of highlights for us all. Thank you especially to Fr. Andrew who has guided the community through the year with over 16 Masses each-and-every week, encouraged its many volunteers and supported the many new initiatives that have helped us unite as a parish family. With support like this, 2023 is bound to be another year worth celebrating!