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Monday, 20 October 2014 17:45

St Camillus still inspires after 400 years

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In 2002, the Ministers of the Infirm, affectionately known throughout the world as the Camillians, arrived in the Diocese of Parramatta to serve the sick and suffering as chaplains in hospitals across the Diocese. The recent launch of the Lay Camillian family demonstrates the enduring influence of the life, work and ministry of their founder St Camillus.

In 2002, the Ministers of the Infirm, affectionately known throughout the world as the Camillians, arrived in the Diocese of Parramatta to serve the sick and suffering as chaplains in hospitals across the Diocese.

They are the full-time chaplains at Westmead Hospital, Blacktown Hospital, Nepean Hospital, Mt Druitt Hospital and the Children’s Hospital Westmead. They also provide chaplaincy services at Westmead Private Hospital and Cumberland Hospital.

camillians2Fr Dado Haber is the Parish Priest of Sacred Heart Parish, Westmead, and Superior of the Camillians in Australia. The Camillians serve on every continent of the world. Australia is a region of the Filipino Province.

On 13 July, Westmead Parish and the Camillian Fathers and wider Camillian family came together for a Mass at Sacred Heart Church to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the death of St Camillus on 14 July 1614.

The Lay Camillian Family was officially launched during the Mass. Its members work beside the fathers in various ministries and are inspired by the work, life and spirituality of St Camillus de Lellis. They are nurses, pastoral carers, carers and extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist.

From the very beginning of the Ministers of the Infirm, St Camillus had lay helpers assisting him with the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.

St Camillus inspires us today, as he did his followers centuries ago.

St Camillus was born on 25 May 1550. He was a soldier and after his conversion served the sick for 39 years. He was beatified by Benedict XIV in 1742 and canonised in 1746.

He was called the founder of a new school of charity which saw the poor and the sick as the Heart of God; in serving them Camillus stated, we serve Jesus the Christ.

camillians1Today there is a wider Camillian family of priests, brothers, two orders of sisters and lay Camillians. Each strives to serve Christ in the sick – Camillus would say to his priest “Put more Heart in your Hands” and he urged the priests to “Be like mothers caring for your only sick child”. Today it is with this gentleness and compassion the Camillians serve the sick.

If you are interested in finding out more about the order of the Ministers of the Infirm (Camillians) contact Fr Dado at Westmead Parish tel (02) 9635 9262. If you are interested in finding out more about the Lay Camillians contact Michelle Davis: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Recollection and Prayer Day for Nurses, Doctors, Allied Health Workers, Carers and all who have a loving heart for the sick

Saturday 22 November 2014 at Sacred Heart Parish, 14 Ralph Street, Westmead.
From 10am-3pm (if you would like to attend Mass, there is a 9am Parish Mass preceding the prayer day). Suggested donation $10. BYO lunch, morning tea, tea & coffee provided.

Keynote address by Fr Marcelo (Bong) Pamintuan MI, Camillian Priest and Chaplain at The Children’s Hospital Westmead. The day will consist of a keynote address, discussions, prayer times, quiet time, group sharing and a closing liturgy, Reconciliation will also be available.

The aim of the day is for those in the caring professions to have a time of prayer and recollection and be renewed in their professional calling. It is hoped that by coming together with others your first love of your profession will be rekindled and the fire reignited.
Inquiries: Michelle Davis tel (02) 4734 3150 BH or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Top right photo: The Camillian community (from left): Fr Domingo, Westmead Hospital; Fr Jojo, now serving in Taiwan; Fr Giulio, Italian Community and Chaplain Blacktown Hospital; Fr Marcello, Children’s Hospital; Fr Dado, Parish Priest of Westmead Parish and chaplain to Cumberland and Westmead Private Hospitals; Fr Reggie, Mt Druitt/Nepean Hospitals; and Br Eric (retired).

Left photo: Chaplains (standing, from left): Dodie Jalosjos, Michelle Davis, Michael Kukla, Ramon Vergara, Mary and Pio Vergara; (seated) Kaori Ochiai, Annie Vergara and Joseph Simon.

 

This article by Michelle Davis was first published in the October 2014 edition of Catholic Outlook, the official magazine of the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta.