All Saints Greenwood new parish centre a reminder ‘good works come from good faith’
The Greenwood parish centre was a ten-year project in the making and can accommodate up to 300 people in the hall and veranda area. Photo: Michelle Tan.
By Amanda Murthy
The blessing and opening of the All Saints Church Greenwood Parish Centre held on Friday, 18 February, provided Mass celebrant Perth Archbishop Costelloe SDB an opportunity to speak to the congregation about what a parish mission should be.
“The mission of any parish community is that the whole community, under the guidance of its Parish Priest who the shepherd-leader of the community, are called to be a community of trusting, faithful disciples,” Archbishop Costelloe said.
“Who help each other to grow in our love for the Lord, to grow more deeply aware of God’s great mercy and compassion, and who then, together, become a vital, active, generous and out reaching community whose trusting faith in God is there for everybody to see,” he continued.
“In the way you care for each other, forgive each other, support, and encourage each other, and reach out in every way you can, especially into your local community, to help and support all those in need.”
Archbishop Costelloe was joined for the occasion by Greenwood Parish Priest Fr Elver Delicano.
In his homily, Archbishop Costelloe posed a question, ‘What is the relationship between faith and good works?’
To answer this question, Archbishop Costelloe drew inspiration from the letters of St’s James and Paul.
The Greenwood parish community gathered on 18 February to celebrate Mass and witness the official blessing and opening of their parish centre. Photo: Michelle Tan.
“Saint Paul wanted to stress that we are not saved because of what we do but rather because of what we believe or, even more accurately, in whom we believe…. St Paul insists that forgiveness of sin and our eternal salvation is not a reward for good behaviour but rather is a precious gift, freely given to us because of God’s great love and mercy and not because God feels he owes it to us because we have behaved ourselves,” Archbishop Costelloe cited.
“In today’s first reading, we find Saint James saying, “faith becomes perfect by what we do” and that “if good works do not go with faith, then faith is quite dead.”
“St James is saying is that our salvation depends on our faith, the existence of which and the nature of which will inevitably show forth in the way we behave: In the way we behave towards God himself, in the way we behave towards each other, and in the way we behave towards the world in which we live,” he added.
Archbishop Costelloe added that in understanding the meaning of having trusting faith in Christ, Christians will come to realise that they are not saved by the good works they perform but rather by the quality of the trust placed in God as the heart of their lives.
“It is this trust which inevitably gives birth to a deeper and deeper love which then spurs us on to share this wonderful gift of love with others and to do so in all the practical ways which are available to us.”
Parish Centre Subcommittee member Eric Jas said the planning, development and approvals of the centre took a total of eight years, with construction by Colgan Industries Pty Ltd beginning in April 2021.
“Now that the project is at the final stages of completion (expected to complete early March), we can look back at a rewarding process. Many people have contributed to this project, all with different talents and personalities. Seeking ways to collaborate and overcoming differences in opinion has been a key success factor,” Mr Jas said.
“It has not always been smooth sailing. We experienced some distractions along the way, including a couple of years where no or little progress was made. It took a degree of persistence to keep the momentum going during those times. By the time we achieved all the necessary approvals and were preparing to engage Colgan Industries there was enough momentum to confidently commence the physical work on site.
“Despite COVID-19 and challenging weather conditions, Colgan Industries have delivered a quality product within the agreed timeframe. Fundraising occurs within the parish and is facilitated by a separate subcommittee. The people involved with that subcommittee are doing a fantastic job and have been great at finding creative ways to raise the necessary funds from our generous parish community,” he added.
Mr Jas added the parish centre function hall, which can be opened along its side to create a much larger gathering area that includes an adjacent undercover veranda, can accommodate up to 300 people.
“The centre has a large and well-equipped kitchen with servery to the hall. There are also modern bathroom facilities and two large storage rooms. An additional major benefit of the building’s layout is the improved safety in relation to car and pedestrian traffic at the adjacent two carpark areas, and along the pathway to the church’s main entrance,” Mr Jas cited.
“This facility will add much value and joy to our parish for this and future generations. What we are most grateful for is the community spirit that we have demonstrated in the delivery of this project.”