News

Caritas Executives on a Mission: Riding 900 kms in 9 days

Kirsty GoulburnSunday, April 23, Kirsty Robertson, Caritas Australia’s CEO, and Richard Landels, Caritas Australia’s Advancement Director, took off on an epic 900km bicycle ride from Sydney to Melbourne in a quest to help break the cycle of poverty.  
They started the journey from Mary Immaculate Church in Quakers Hill, Sydney, with a blessing from Bishop Vincent Long and will finish in at St Patrick's Cathedral in Melbourne where they will be greeted by Archbishop Peter Comensoli.  The cyclists will soon be stopping in Wangaratta and Euroa in the Diocese of Sandhurst, where they will meet with students at local schools and parishioners.

Knights Gather for Annual Barney's Picnic

KSC LongwoodBreakfast BarneysPIcnic April2022 125

For about 60 years on the first Sunday after Easter (Divine Mercy Sunday since 2000), the Knights of the Southern Cross Victoria have held their annual regional gathering on the banks of the Murray River at Gehrig Wine Estate in Barnawatha North, writes Andrew Vaccaro

A Year of Preparation and Consultation for a Sandhurst Mission and Pastoral Council

PayerFront Image27 April 2022 – 27 April 2023
Starting and finishing with the Feast of Our Lady of Good Counsel, Patroness of the Diocese of Sandhurst 

A key recommendation in the 2020 Go Forth Review of the Diocese was that the Bishop Shane establish a Diocesan Mission and Pastoral Council (DMPC) to support him to “operate in a strategic and collaborative way, drawing on the best possible advice of lay people and clergy for delivery of the Church’s mission.” (Go Forth Report)

Sandhurst Scripture Talks 2022

Growing faith communities for our mission today: Insights from the genius of St Paul

In June 2022, the Catholic Diocese of Sandhurst will host a series of Zoom talks on Sacred Scripture which aim to inform and support the faith-life of the people of God in the Diocese of Sandhurst, particularly in the light of our present context: the diocesan Go Forth review, the Plenary Council of the Australian Church, the Synod on Synodality and our socio-cultural reality.

Major church providers open letter to all federal candidates

ElectionCandidates OpenLetter 125Australia’s major Church providers* have come together ahead of the upcoming election to call on all parties and candidates to commit to policies that will make a real difference in the lives of the most vulnerable. Our hope is that voters, candidates and parties will transform this vision into a better Australia.

People of God Invited to Surround Council in Prayer

Plenary PrayerCatholics across the country are being invited to participate in a new prayer pilgrimage as the Church journeys towards the second assembly of the Fifth Plenary Council of Australia.


The “Walking in the Spirit” pilgrimage has been prepared to encourage individuals, families, parishes, schools and other ministries to keep the Plenary Council in their prayers.

Knights of the Southern Cross gather for the annual ‘Barney’s Picnic’

For about 60 years on the first Sunday after Easter (Divine Mercy Sunday since 2000), the Knights of the Southern Cross Victoria have held their annual regional gathering on the banks of the Murray River at Gehrig Wine Estate in Barnawatha North.

Originally hosted by KSCV Wodonga Branch Member, Barney Gehrig (now hosted by his son Bernie), it became known as ‘Barney’s Picnic’, and the name has stuck ever since. Being hosted in the same location for over 50 years by Rutherglen, Wodonga, Myrtleford and Wangaratta Branches, ‘Barney’s’ has become a KSCV institution, one of those events that makes being a Knight a joyous experience. 2020 was the only year we missed ‘Barney’s’, for obvious reasons.

Bishops call for ‘a better kind of politics’

ACBC BetterKindofPolitics 125

Australia’s Catholic bishops have called for a shake-up that focuses the country’s politics on the common good of all, including – and especially – those who struggle to participate in the community.


Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Mark Coleridge said no one political party fully embodies Catholic social teaching. The bishops are, however, offering an election statement to encourage Catholics and people of good will to reflect on the good they can do for their community by using their vote for the good of all.

Palm Sunday Gathering A Show of Support for Refugees

RAR PalmSunday2022 125By John Murphy
 “Do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with God” Micah 6:8. 
 
Palm Sunday 2022 marked a return to people of faith and good-will, gathering to promote Bendigo and Australia as a welcoming and just community; calling on our parliament to replace cruel practices of exclusion and detention with a compassionate and supportive welcome to those who flee to us for sanctuary.  

Scripture Reflection on the Readings of Easter Sunday


FrBrian Boyle feb 2017Scripture Scholar, Very Rev. Dr Brian Boyle EV, shares a reflection on the Readings of Easter Sunday.

"The readings for Easter Sunday invite us to reflect particularly on the theme of participation. We listen to one another and in doing so open ourselves to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. All of us by virtue of our Baptism are qualified to contribute to this process of listening."

Know a Good Egg?

Egg 125It’s a modern-world irony that the custom of giving eggs, symbols of the Risen Christ, at Easter has become a commercialised practice that can bring short-term joy to some, while possibly seriously harming others, and causing long-term harm to our environment.

As Catholics, we know that purchasing is always a moral act, and want to make ethical purchases, but how can we know a good egg when we see one?

Catholic Social Services weighs in on Budget

cssv logo 125The Chair of Catholic Social Services Australia, Francis Sullivan,  has weighed in on the Federal Budget, staying that the budget does not address long-term systemic problems.   “The  ‘us and them’ divide has never been more obvious and the lack of leadership never more glaring,”  he writes.  

Fr Jackson filled with awe and wonder at Thanksgiving Mass

Jackson ThanksgivingMass 350Fr Jackson Saunders celebrated a Mass of Thanksgiving for his priestly ordination on 27 March at St Kilian's Church in Bendigo on the evening after his ordination to the priesthood.
 "I am most grateful for the support of all across the weekend and for people's prayers ... My Thanksgiving Mass was a special moment and it was humbling to lead people in the celebration of the Eucharist. I was filled with a sense of awe and wonder." 
Rev. Fr Jackson Saunders

Catholic Healthcare on the Federal Budget

CHA FederalBUdgetAustralia’s not-for-profit Catholic health and aged care providers are disappointed by the lack of ongoing assistance and structural reform that is needed to support Australia’s most vulnerable in palliative care, mental health and social services.
While the measures announced in last week’s Budget will provide some temporary relief to some in the community labouring under the cost of living, it missed the opportunity to deliver lasting change. 

Part-time Unit of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) in Bendigo 2022

CPE BendigoCourseThe Association for Supervised and Clinical Pastoral Education in Victoria will conduct a part-time unit in the second semester of 2022.

CPE is one of the most highly recognised programs of supervised education for provision of spiritual and pastoral care and is rarely available outside the metropolitan area. It carries extensive credit in tertiary religious and theological study programs. It is highly recommended for anyone contemplating working in pastoral or spiritual care especially in a professional role, or in a volunteer capacity, and for those working in other helping professions.

Fr Jophin Joy aims to bring joy

Fr Jophin Joy 125New to our Diocese, Fr Jophin Joy is a Holy Spirit Father originally from Kerala, India.  He joins priests from his community, Fr Vijay Bandanadam, Fr Shibu Pezhumthottathil and Fr Uday Marenini to serve in Sandhurst where he is Assistant Priest at St Brendan's Shepparton.  

Fr Jophin introduces himself and shares some thoughts about his mission in Sandhurst. 

Fr Uday Marneni hopes to grow with his parishioners

Fr Uday Marneni 125Fr Uday Marneni is serving as Assistant Priest at Wodonga.  He's a priest of the Apostolic Life Community of Priests in the Opus Spiritus Sancti based in Hyderabad, India, known as the Holy Spirit Fathers.  Fr Uday joins fellow priests from his community, Fr Vijay Bandanadam, Fr Shibu Pezhumthottathil and Fr Jophin Joy, to serve in the Diocese of Sandhurst. 

Fr Uday introduces himself.  

Jesuits welcome refugees fleeing Ukraine as crisis escalates

Ukraine RefugeeAs the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine escalates, Jesuit Mission’s Ukraine Emergency Appeal is contributing to deliver 24/7 vital services on the ground to people in need.

With over 10 million civilians displaced, including over 3.6 million refugees fleeing Ukraine, Fr Marius Talos SJ, Director of JRS Romania and partner of Jesuit Mission, is welcoming an intake of refugees like never before. “The first need is to welcome these people,” he said.

Caritas Australia urges that we must not forget global crises

Caritas No Forget Glocal crisis 125Caritas Australia welcomes the new aid commitments at a time when there is greater global need than ever, but expresses concern that these increases are not enough to meet growing needs.

Caritas Conversations help to connect us to Mission

Caritas Conversations 125Schools and parishes across the country are getting a unique insight into how development work happens through the innovative Caritas Conversations program, which provides the opportunity to connect directly with Caritas Australia’s program staff, partners and program participants.

St Joseph’s Nagambie turns 100!

Nagambie StJosephs100Years Bishop 2022 125St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School in Nagambie may be considered small by many standards. However, there was nothing small about the way the community came together recently to celebrate their 100th anniversary. Big displays of history and memorabilia; big celebrations which extended into the Labour Day weekend and an even bigger community spirit!

The celebrations marked 100 years since the foundation stone for a new Catholic school was laid in Nagambie by the Most Reverend Archbishop Mannix. The Parish of St Malachy had expressed their desire for a new school soon 5 March 1922, amid much excitement, building commenced.

Youth Ministry Officer (2 positions)

sandhursr diocese coat of arms 125pxAn exciting opportunity for two suitably qualified and enthusiastic individuals to become integral members of the Sandhurst Youth Ministry team supporting youth and youth ministry initiatives throughout the Diocese.

APPLICATION CLOSING DATE: 2 May 2022.

CONTACT: Coordinator of Youth Ministry, Ruth Lawlor at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Click "Read More" for more information, a copy of the position description and how to apply.

Sandhurst Event Calendar 2022

Calendar2A list of the main Diocesan events for 2022 can be downloaded form the Diocesan website. 

The Calendar is designed to be printed as an A3 poster to assist you with planning events in your parish. There is a landscape and portrait version of this calendar and there is  enough space for to pencil in your own events. 

Church-based volunteer network responding to humanitarian need across Ukraine

CaritasUkraine Humanitarian aid supplies at the central railway station in Kyiv 125An enormous, largely Church-based, volunteer network is responding to the mounting humanitarian need in Ukraine, which is causing devastating consequences for civilians.

“People gather at six in the morning outside the Caritas office for support. We ask them to come at ten o'clock, but they are here queuing from early in the morning to be able to get some help. So, we must work from six in the morning to avoid crowds,” said Iryna Boyko, Caritas Kyiv humanitarian aid coordinator.

Fr Vijay installed as Parish Priest of Benalla

Vijay Bishop 125On Sunday 20 March, Fr Vijay Bandanadam was installed as Parish Priest of St Joseph's, Benalla. Fr Vijay had been the Administrator of St Joseph's since January 2019 and was appointed as Parish Priest of Benalla by Bishop Shane ten days after his permanent residency visa was granted. The congregation was excited to see Fr Vijay installed and thrilled that he will remain their Parish Priest for six more years.

Fr Vijay reflects on his installation.

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