PAST and present were under one roof when eight local children received First Holy Communion at the centenary Mass of St Patrick’s Church, Laidley, on October 27.
The eight children were some of the 23 children Brisbane Archbishop Mark Coleridge confirmed in the parish on the previous Friday during his pastoral visit, which culminated in the centenary Mass.
Gatton Laidley parish priest Missionary Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament Father Noyichan Mamoottil said it was a wonderful event with about 400 people from across the parish’s four communities.
“The whole celebration was very colourful with people,” Fr Mamoottil said.
“We had a field of green – people wore green shirts and we had specially prepared polo shirts for the centenary.
“We’ve been going through a bit of drought and a bit of dry season, and we had a little bit of rain – a little bit of consolation – and to just give thanks to God, we just thought we could all wear green, and just continue to pray for good rains and the whole valley will be green and lively.”
Fr Mamoottil said Archbishop Coleridge’s homily was “nourishing”.
He said many children from the parish schools, Our Lady of Good Counsel, Gatton, and St Mary’s, Laidley, joined the festivities.
Towards the end of the centenary Mass, the children sang the parish blessing.
Fr Mamoottil said it was “so meaningful” to hear the children sing at the centenary.
The older parishioners, he said, particularly enjoyed seeing the children involved in the commemorations.
Three Sisters of Mercy, who were instrumental in the early years of the parish, were also present.
While the Sisters of Mercy were no longer active in the parish, Fr Mamoottil said it was “refreshing” to see them reconnect.
Fr Mamoottil said because the parish had only been amalgamated in 2016, it was challenging to organise to have everyone present together at occasions, but “very joyful” to see at the centenary.
“They did it full of passion,” he said.
A special recipe book was launched at the centenary Mass.
“The good thing is the recipes brought a bit of history of the families, relationships and then memories of the grandparents and all of this, passed on to the next generation,” Fr Mamoottil said.
“So that was something really memorable and really meaningful to the celebration.”