Ministry online

September 2020

This is where you will find updates weekly while we move totally online during the COVID-19 outbreak and as we celebrate our Holy Eucharist.

Mass will be streamed live from our homepage and on our youtube channel 11am Sundays. Or you may watch it on-demand after that. 


Homily from Fr John

Sunday 20th September 2020

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew (20:1-16)

Jesus said to his disciples: “The kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire labourers for his vineyard. After agreeing with the labourers for the usual daily wage, he sent them into his vineyard.  When he went out about nine o’clock, he saw others standing idle in the marketplace; and he said to them, ‘You also go into the vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’ So they went. When he went out again about noon and about three o’clock, he did the same. And about five o’clock he went out and found others standing around; and he said to them, ‘Why are you standing here idle all day?’ They said to him, ‘Because no one has hired us.’ He said to them, ‘You also go into the vineyard.’ 


When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, ‘Call the labourers and give them their pay, beginning with the last and then going to the first.’ When those hired about five o’clock came, each of them received the usual daily wage. Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more; but each of them also received the usual daily wages. And when they received it, they grumbled against the landowner, saying, ‘These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.’ But he replied to one of them, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you.  Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous? So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”


Homily by Fr John

Here at our Sacred Heart Mission while we are celebrating this Mass, we have a dedicated group of workers who are offering a well-prepared meal for breakfast and lunch. Given the Corona virus, it can only be given out as a takeaway whereas in usual times we gather around tables and benches. The meal goes from about 10am – 1pm, over those three hours people come at different times. There is always the late-comer to the meal, the one who comes at the last minute, the one who just missed out but the workers reach out and make sure that no-one leaves disappointed, no-one leaves without getting a meal. After this Mass, I join them for about an hour, just meeting and greeting people and I notice the spirit in which the workers give the meal, the energy with which they serve it is just as high at the beginning of the day as it is at the end of the day, given with a heart of welcome. That generosity given to the late-comer.

When you come to think about it, we are all late-comers in different ways. We think about the journey of maturing. Some people mature and get things earlier on and for others, things dawn on them later in life. In some ways, we are late-comers in realising how loved and precious each one of us are. We might be late to seeing and waking up to things but in the eyes of God’s generosity, even at the moment of our death, if we had been late to a lot of things about our development and our growth, God is going to be as generous with us as if we got it at the beginning of our lives. That generosity of understanding and compassion helping to empower us into life. As a church, we have been a late-comer to a lot of things about the world around us and how to respond, many things I don’t need to go into the details but we all know the church has been a bit of a late-comer to lots of things and we need to keep on receiving that generosity of God to act for life. In someways it feels like the renewal of our church in Vatican Two is just beginning, and that was sixty years ago - at least. We’re called to receive that generosity as we can receive it. 

We think about our present circumstances with the pandemic, we know lots of countries have been late-comers in understanding, lots of leadership has become latent in understanding. When it comes to the celebration of peace, how we are late-comers in understanding what’s really needed to keep us working to secure our world in the place, to really work for justice between people so people don’t seek the way of violence as the only alternative to resolve their conflict.

So our story today really is happening all the time in our lives, that God has a generous focus on the late-comer as everyone gets the same amount of Spirit, the landowner God comes out and wants to engage the people, saying, ‘Why are you idle, I want to open up your freedom to give you gifts to life’, and he keeps on going out at different times of the day giving and promising the same arrangement that has been given to everyone else, no matter what time he catches us and invites us into life. Probably a way of seeing this is to see that God gives us an equal amount of his heart in the Risen Christ every moment. We just come late to understanding how God has been so generous to us and is with us in all circumstances. He gives the Son of his heart every moment until we wake up and receive and be happy that we have received more than enough. We don’t have to cling to things and be envious because God keeps on giving the fullness of his heart, revealing that cross, showing that God has been so generous that he enters into our stinginess, our limitations, our violence to one another, and our reactions and says, ‘You can ease up, I’m as generous to every creature and to all creation. Keep on recognising that and you won’t be too worried about who’s first or last, who comes late or not, you are all in my heart’.

St Paul had this wonderful experience of receiving that generosity and he thought, ‘Well, whether I’m first or last, alive or dead, it doesn’t really matter in the long run because I belong to the generosity of God revealed in the Risen Christ.’ He says so beautifully to us today in Philippians, from they say, prison at this time and facing great suffering and limitations.  He says,

Christ will be glorified in my body whether by my life or by my death. Life to me, of course, is Christ but death would bring me something more; but then again, if  living in this body means work which is having good results – I do not know what I should choose.

First or last, whether he’s with God or not immediately, he’s in contact with that generosity.

Let’s recognise in ourselves today that where we are getting envious, let’s return to the generosity of God’s heart that frees our hearts no matter what time we wake up to what life’s about and people around us wake up and we keep on working away for their goodness, that God is continually generous until all is reconciled. As the landowner says, as God’s heart says,

Have I no right to do what I like with my own? Why be envious because I am generous? The last will be first, and the first, last.


Migrant & Refugee Sunday

A Prayer

No one is a stranger to you
and no one is ever far from your loving care.
Help us show this same loving care to all who travel to this Great Southland.
All come with hope for a better life,
some for peace, a safe place to heal,
to build, to give and to receive.
Open our hearts to accepting differences 
and unlikeness.
Let us welcome the stranger with kindness,
embrace the ones who are suffering, 
advocate for the ones without voice,
so all may know we are our brothers 
and sisters’ keepers.
In the name of your Son, 
who came to save and serve
the outcast and marginalised.


Live Stream

Weekday Mass Tuesday 29th September


Notices news and prayers

Season of Creation 2020 week 2

A Global Faith Perspective

Season of Creation 2020

Jubilee for the Earth: new rhythms, new hope is the theme of this year’s Season of Creation

Parish Report August

Our August Parish Report 2020

Praying with Mary Mackillop

Praying to Mary Mackillop for Maria George

How to wear a Mask

Some instructions to wearing a mask

The Mask Prayer

A prayer for the mask

Emergency Food Guide

The Emergency Food Guide released by the City of Port Phillip this morning. This will be valuable for people who are struggling and it’s got a good range of available meal/food assistance and details of access and eligibility.

Archbishops of Australia letter

A word of encouragement from the Archbishops 14th May

Archbishop’s letter

A letter from our Archbishop 7th May 2020

Laudato Si Week

Attached is some information on Laudato Si Week 16-24 May

The Candle in Isolation

A series of short prayers written by Michael McGirr because of this Easter and Easter Season, “... we could not come to the candle, (so) the candle might come out and meet us where we are.” There are 17 images and prayers, each showing that Jesus is alive among us, wherever we are

The Emmaus Prayer

The Emmaus Prayer by Fr Michael Van Sloun. A lovely prayer to accompany Mass 26th April

Letter From Fr John

A letter to the parish from Fr John Petrulis March 27th 2020

Prayer at this time

A prayer from the English Cathedral of Prayer, during the UK lockdown.

Let this be us

An Inspirational Poem from one of our Parishioners and Member of the PLDT: Fiona Lynch

Spiritual Community

An Act of Spiritual Communion by St. Alphonsus Liguori

Prayer in a Time of Anxiety

A lovely prayer for our anxiety at this time


Giving at this time

How to still participate in our in service and support program during Covid-19

Please continue to give to the various collections either via (here is how) or you can use direct deposit to our bank account 

BSB: 083 347

Account number:646514692


Australian Psychology Society

Handy Resources for coping during COVID-19

Isolation during COVID-19

Maintaining your mental health during social isolation

Anxiety & mental health

Coronavirus (COVID-19) anxiety and staying mentally healthy - for older adults

Tips for coping

Tips for coping with coronavirus anxiety


Some handy resources

Both government and Catholic resources that will help during COVID-19

Health Tips

Department for Health Vic

Latest health updates and travel restrictions and who to call if you have health concerns.

Catholic Resources

Melbourne Archdiocese

Latest news, information, and changes to gatherings. Also, your questions answered on the response to Coronavirus. Prayers, reflections, and video streaming.

Watch Mass Via Video

Our Parish Mass

Join us weekly for our regular Mass online

Pray At Home

Catholic Church Resources

Catholics are encouraged to utilise the resources below to support your prayer life and especially to allow you to continue to keep Sunday as a day when prayer is prominent.


(03) 9531 6120

Parish House

2 Normandy Road, Elwood, 3184

©2019 by Catholic Parish of Sacred Heart and St Columba