Tuesday 13 December 2011
By John Costa
On 26 November, the Catholic Parish of Ivanhoe joyously celebrated a special Mass for the installation of Fr Thang as parish priest at one of its three churches, St Bernadette's. Archbishop Denis Hart was the principal celebrant and homilist at the Mass, which was also the first official use of the new Missal, and start of Advent and the New Church year.
Vocation Director Fr Binh Le was MC. The Mass was enriched with additional symbolism that included Fr Gregory Bourke reading the Letter of Appointment, Archbishop Hart presenting the Keys to the Church, Pastoral Leadership Team (PTL) and staff to Fr Thang, and Fr Thang, as the new parish priest, renewing his ordination promises, opening and kneeling at the Chapel of the Blessed Sacrament (tabernacle), incensing the baptistery (baptismal font); Archbishop Hart seating the new parish priest in the reconciliation room (confessional), a visit to and Prayer at the Marian shrine and the new parish priest incensing the Holy Oils.
Towards the end of the Mass PLT Chairperson Chris Dixon spoke of the way Fr Thang had been so readily welcomed and accepted into the parish. In support of his new role Chris presented Fr Thang with a gift from the people of Ivanhoe Parish. St Bernadette's Principal Kathy Lowe similarly made a presentation on behalf of the three parish schools. The Korean Community also presented a gift to Fr Thang. In congratulating Fr Thang, Archbishop Hart spoke of his uncertainty at the time that the recently ordained Fr Thang would be willing to accept the challenge of Ivanhoe Parish. His Grace said that he, like the people of the parish, was delighted when Fr Thang accepted the position. Archbishop Hart also acknowledged the (much loved) former parish priest, Fr John Cunningham, as one of the co-celebrants tonight. A beaming Fr Thang thanked the Archbishop, priests servers, and all present, including relatives, the parish choir led by soloist John Caddy, organist Helen Wentworth, young Korean violin soloist Paul Moon, Pastoral Leadership Team and staff, Liturgy Group and many others across the parish who assisted in organising the Mass. He acknowledged predecessors Frs John Cunningham and Len Thomas.
Photos supplied by the Catholic Parish of Ivanhoe