By: Denib Suguitan
Last April 30, twenty-nine members of Serra Club joined the seminary for the celebration of the Holy Eucharist and lunch. The Serrans hail from the local chapters of the Club including Melbourne, Oakleigh Deanery, Bendigo, and Sale. The Mass was presided by the Seminary Rector, Fr Denis Stanley, together with the seminary staff.
During the lunch, Fr Stanley gave words of welcome for the Serrans, which in turn was received and responded to by the Club President of Melbourne, Mr John Short. He spoke about the apostolate of Serra Club and their current programs. At the end of his speech, a donation was handed on to the Rector by Mr Short, in the name of the Serrans assembled.
After the sumptuous lunch, the seminarians invited the delighted Serrans for a cup of tea and coffee. Some Serrans were given a tour around the seminary. The seminarians took the opportunity to catch up with people who spiritually support their seminary formation. One common compliment by the Serrans was how beautiful the singing was during the Mass. They also commended the warm welcome they received from the seminarians.
Serra Club was formed in Seattle, Washington, USA in 1935 when a group of lay people decided to promote and foster vocations. They named the group after the great Franciscan missionary to America, St Junipero Serra. It since then grew to become a worldwide apostolate. The Club began in Australia in 1967 but officially introduced in 1970.
The Serra Club’s primary objectives are: to foster and promote vocations to the ministerial priesthood in the Catholic Church as a particular vocation to service and to support priests in their sacred ministry; to encourage and affirm vocations to consecrated religious life in the Catholic Church; and to assist members to recognise and respond in their own lives to God’s call to holiness in Jesus Christ and through the Holy Spirit.