Fr. Anthoni, Parish Priest at St. Francis Xavier from 2002-2011, suggested the idea of a Parish Walking Group quite a few years ago and this group has continued through rain, hail and shine for almost a decade.
Did he see our community as a group of unfit, unmotivated, unhealthy parishioners who could do with a shake-up, or did he seek to provide an opportunity for our people to meet fellow parishioners, to share their faith and friendship, and enjoy some physical activity at the same time by walking round beautiful Box Hill? Of course, the latter was the case.
Saturday morning was chosen as the appropriate time for such a venture, and an open invitation was extended to parishioners to come along and join in Morning Prayer, enjoy a pleasant walk together and return to the Parish House for coffee.
Over time, the structure of the group has changed. Walkers still meet outside St. Francis Xavier Church at 9.00am but now instead of walking round Box Hill, they walk to the Middleborough Latte Café at Kerrimuir Shopping Centre where a lively time, talking with fellow parishioners over a latte or hot chocolate ensues. The walk takes approximately 30 minutes and while some members have left the group, new faces continually appear, but not everyone walks, it is quite acceptable to just turn up at the Café any time after 9.30am.
If you are interested in joining the walking group, go to St. Francis Xavier Church at 9.00am any Saturday or just look for the BIG table at the back of the café at 9.30am, no invitation is necessary and you will be made most welcome.