ENGADINE

Engadine is a hilly, southern suburb of Sydney.  In 1959 four Salesian Sisters opened a convent and primary school in the Salesian parish there.  Over the years the Sisters, lay staff, parents and children have created a vibrant Salesian family atmosphere.

Three Sisters and three novices form the Engadine community. The community leader is also the novice formator and is a member of the Parish Pastoral Council.  The community is involved with young people in a variety of activities, age groups and settings. An elderly Sister resides at the nearby John Paul Retirement Village at Heathcote, and is visited by community members several times a week.

St Maria Mazzarello Novitiate

The novitiate of the Salesian Sisters of the South Pacific Region is at Engadine. It is dedicated to St. Maria Domenica Mazzarello, the first Salesian Sister and co-foundress of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians. The novitiate is a two-year period where the young women deepen their understanding of their call from God and where they discern that God is calling them to live their lives in consecrated vowed life as Salesian Sisters.

In December 2016 one of the Novices, Sr. Kim Phuong Nguyen took her first vows in a beautiful ceremony with the Salesian Sisters and her family and friends. Currently the SPR Province is blessed with three novices.  Their study program includes the study of Human Development, Church History, World Religions, the history of Religious Life,   Liturgy, Canon Law, Christology, Mariology, Italian language, dressmaking, keyboard, the life and spiritualities of St. John Bosco and St. Maria Mazzarello and issues relating to the life and traditions of the Salesian Sisters spread throughout the world.

The Salesian Sisters' mission is directed to young people. Therefore during the two-year novitiate program at Engadine the novices are engaged in a variety of activities with young people: from primary to secondary school students, from Early Learning Centres to young adult youth groups, from summer and winter camps to Youth Centres.

The novices participate in the KAIROS Program which has been in operation for the past thirty years in Sydney and is supported by Catholic Religious Australia. It enables the Salesian Sisters’ novices to interact with other novices from different religious Congregations at social, spiritual and intellectual levels. Some key topics of the KAIROS Program are: cross-cultural awareness, lectio divina, Scripture, the psalms, spiritual and psychological growth, community living skills, discernment, psycho-sexual integration, vowed life, images of God, liturgy and Eucharist, wellness and health, Myers-Briggs, Enneagram and journaling.

At the end of a two-year period the novice and the Congregation of the Salesian Sisters are able to discern whether the novice is ready to make her first profession as a Salesian Sister.

Teaching at St John Bosco Primary School

At present two Salesian Sisters work in the St. John Bosco Learning Centre. The learning centre caters for the needs of children requiring individual help in key subject areas. Throughout the year the Sisters are involved in staff meetings and staff prayer moments, the school choir and fundraising activities in solidarity with people in need. 

University Chaplaincy - Spiritual Director

Sr. Laura Chau is Spiritual Director of the Catholic Asian Students Society (CASS).  CASS is an important outreach of the Chinese Catholic Pastoral Centre (CCPC). It caters for Asian students at four Sydney universities: Sydney University, University of New South Wales, Macquarie University and University of Technology. Student groups are divided into four branches and ten groups regularly meet each week for Faith Sharing together with another group that will have bi-weekly meetings.

From humble beginnings centred around 40 Chinese members, CASS has grown today to receiving around 300 new members annually from diverse Asian backgrounds at the four universities: UNSW (established 1992), USyd (1993), MacqU (1994), UTS (1995).  "Central", another group made up of under-graduate and post-graduate CASS members serves as coordinating body in bringing the CASS branches together for large scale activities. 

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