Monday, 8 October 2007

Processions Of Faith Through Santa Teresa and the Todd Mall

Our group of fifty, who have been on a North-South pilgrimage from Darwin were blessed to visit Santa Teresa this morning. Santa Teresa, eighty kilometers west of Alice Springs was originally set up as a mission on Arrernte land. It is now home to around 600 people. The sisters no longer run the mission and it is now influenced by a large Marist presence within the indigenous community, with the brothers living there assisting young people to experience life in a rural outback environment through immersion programs.

Local primary and secondary school children met the Cross, Icon of Our Lady and Message Stick at the entrance to their town. Surrounded by hills coloured in with red dirt, yellow rocks and brown-green scrub, the significant items were processed through a large part of the streets in town. While those from Santa Teresa had an opportunity for veneration outside the small church, we gathered inside to learn of the dreamings that were the catalyst for the creation of the paintings covering the walls of the church. We are very privileged to have one of the young artists Jane, on our pilgrimage.

Todd Mall, in the centre of Alice Springs was then used to process through and continue to take this giant Cross, prayerful Icon of Our Lady and inviting Message Stick, to the places young people are present. The mall was fairly quiet on this Monday afternoon, so the local school children who carried the cross a majority of the way were able to truly take the cross and hold it close to themselves within their own town.

Jacs :)

1 comment:

Nicola, Ghan Pilgrimage said...

This has been a wonderful experience for me because before I attended this trip I was always a bit shy to outsiders that I didn’t know, but ever since I’ve been on this trip I’ve opened up to people I didn’t know and made lots of friends and had the opportunity to meet lots of Aboriginal Elders of the NT and I feel the beliefs that they feel.

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