New remembrance garden in honour of Australian service men and women
November 9, 2021
A new Remembrance Garden at St Francis Xavier Cathedral, Wollongong (36
Harbour St) has been created in honour of all those who have given so selflessly in the
service of our country: those who died in wars, members of our armed services,
ambulance officers, police officers, and all front line workers.
Rev Bernard Gordon, Vicar General of the Catholic Diocese of Wollongong, will open
and bless the Remembrance Garden at 9:30am on 11 November 2021. Guests
attending include Hon. Sharon Bird – Federal Member for Cunningham; Inspector
Chad Wallace – NSW Fire – South; Mr Ken Milner – Wollongong RSL; Mr Stuart Mackie
Warrant – Training Warrant Officer, Bravo Company Defence and members of the
Lumen Christi parish community.
Rev Gordon said the garden will serve as a lasting memorial for parishioners and
visitors to reflect on the generosity of those who serve our community, often in
circumstances that require great courage.
“It is with great pride that I open and bless this sacred place,” he said. “Our hope is
that it will provide all those who wish to come and spend some quiet time the
opportunity to peacefully remember and reflect on those who have nobly served this
beautiful country of ours.”
The new garden recognises those who have served our country in the armed services,
and pays tribute to the ongoing efforts of our frontline workers.
“We also want to remember those who are grieving and suffer the consequences of
losing their loved ones through violence and encountering dangerous situations,”
said Rev Gordon. “Nothing will make losing someone dear to us any easier. But it is
very important for us to express our sympathy for those who are bereaved and to
know they are welcome and not left alone. We are here for you.”
The Remembrance Garden has been constructed In partnership with Mr Thomas
Wildner & Mrs Amy Wildner, Directors from the Wildmann Group, and with the
financial support of the Lumen Christi parishioners.
This beautiful memorial is an expression of the Catholic Church’s mission to reflect
God’s loving care for everyone. Part of this service is to ensure people in the Lumen
Christi parish and the wider community can access beautiful, open spaces and
experience some moments of peace and quiet reflection.
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Our diocesan logo is theologically rich and very succinct. As a hand, it depicts our mission as a diocese and as individuals within the diocese, of bearing (bringing, carrying) Christ’s love to one another and to the world around us. In this, we are the hand of Jesus Christ, and we are offering ourselves to him so that he might work through us.
We can be the bearers of his love only as a response to his call and in the strength of his grace. We are reminded of this in two ways—through the symbol of the dove (the Holy Spirit) also present in the logo, and by the incorporation of the cross that segments the logo. The presence of the cross is a reminder that bearing the love of Christ will inevitably cost us if we live it authentically. However, in the way that the Cross is the portent of redemption and life—an echo of the tree of life in the book of Genesis—so becoming bearers of the love of Christ will also bring us to life.
The four fingers of the hand also represent the four regions of our diocese. The first is bluerepresenting the beautiful water of the Shoalhaven. The second is a blue and green combination representing the waters and escarpment of the Illawarra. The third is greendepicting the hills and plains of the Macarthur. The fourth is dark green illustrating the forests of the Southern Highlands.