28 College Street Caroline Springs, VIC, 3023 | Phone: 03 8361 9822 |



Friday 14th June 2024

My dear people,

We had a truly blessed time in Europe for the Marian Pilgrimage. We left on a 5:15am flight on the 21st May, which means we had to be at the airport at 2am. Despite the early hour, everyone was cheerful and excited about the trip.

The pilgrimage started upon our arrival the next day in Fatima when we were met at the hotel by the guide for the day. We were first brought to the churches in Fatima and offered Mass there. We were also taken to the house where St Jacinta and St Francesco lived. Unfortunately, the house of St Lucia was closed for refurbishments while we were there. Hearing the stories of the apparitions of Our Lady to the three children in the very place where they happened, joining the candlelight procession in the evening and offering Mass at the shrine were wonderful events. After Fatima, we went to Avila, visited the sites which were significant in the life of St Teresa of Avila and offered Mass at the church built where she was born. The next day we visited sites in Loyola that were important to St Ignatius of Loyola. We were privileged to offer Mass at his family home, which is now a beautiful church. After Loyola, the next site of the pilgrimage was Lourdes. We were fortunate to spend a whole day in Lourdes which started with Mass in English at the shrine. Our guide then took us to the place of the apparitions where we were able to take part in the “gesture of water”. This consisted of washing our hands and face with the water coming from the miraculous spring in Lourdes. We were also able to watch the procession in the evening. After Lourdes, we set out for Avignon and offered Mass at the cathedral there. We were reminded that it was here that St Catherine of Siena convinced Gregory XI to return to Rome. The next highlight of the pilgrimage was the time spent in Siena. We celebrated Mass on an altar on the other side of the wall where the head of St Catherine is and visited her house. After Siena, we proceeded to Loreto, Rotondo, Lanciano and Rome. In Rome, we offered Mass in the church of Santa Maria Sopra Minerva which is the church where the body of St Catherine of Siena lies.

Having given you a bit of an itinerary, I can share with you that the pilgrimage has been a source of great blessings for all the pilgrims. Many friendships were started which I believe will stay with us forever. The way in which people helped each other truly manifested love and generosity. It was humbling to see the two pilgrims, in their late teens and early twenties, look after the pilgrims in their sixties and seventies. Personally, the pilgrimage reinvigorated in me my love for the priesthood. Offering Mass and praying at the tombs of two great priest saints, St Ignatius of Loyola and St Padre Pio in Loyola and Rotondo, reminded me of the great gift of the priesthood for which I will be forever grateful. Being in Siena and seeing all the significant places of the life of our patron saint was something truly beautiful.

It is difficult to believe that after 9 weeks, commencing on 17th April, our first Alpha Course for 2024 concluded on Wednesday 12th June. Alpha started with 34 registered participants and 27 regularly attended the weekly sessions and retreat. It was very encouraging to see the diverse range of attendees in terms of both age and stages of faith.  With our youngest participants in their late teens and our oldest in their early 70’s, it showed that people, no matter their age or stage of life and faith are still searching.  Some are still searching for answers, while others belonging, friendship and growth. Most importantly, as witnessed by our Alpha team, all are searching for a closeness to Jesus they had not yet experienced.  The Alpha team cannot speak warmly enough about our participants, particularly their openness and vulnerability, and how this has enhanced their spiritual journey leading them to a deeper understanding, encounter & relationship with Christ. It has also established a deep sense of trust, friendship and belonging, which we hope will continue for our participants well into the future.  Personally, and on behalf of the parish and Alpha team, I would like to congratulate our participants on completing the Alpha Course and thank the many people within our parish community who so generously supplied meals and funds to the Alpha Program. I encourage you to keep an eye out for our next Alpha Program starting Wednesday 25th September.

We continue turning to our patron saint and we ask for her intercession.

St Catherine of Siena, Pray for us.


Yours sincerely in Christ,

Fr Richard Rosse PP

St Catherine Of Siena Parish Mass Schedule

Mass Schedule

Monday:  9:30am

Tuesday: 7:00pm
Wednesday:  9:30am
Thursday:  9:30am
Friday:  9:30am

Saturday: 9:30am & 6:00pm
Sunday:  8:30am, 10:30am & 12:30pm


Tuesday: 6:00 pm

Saturday:  8:45 am, 10:00 am and 5:00 pm or by appointment if these times don’t suit.