Eastern Link

May 2019


Eastern Link banner light blue 1000


The Australian National Council of the Catenian Association Submission to the Plenary Council 2020
plenary100The final submission formulated by the ANC after the opportunity for input by all Australian Catenians.
Catenian Podcast: Who are the Catenians?
group recordinga 100Provincial President Graham Short, Provincial Secretary John Tweedie and Manly Secretary Terry Hayes have been interviewed for a Podcast about The Catenians
Ideas for Membership and Parish activities
ideas 100Carlingford Circle introduces free dinners, all you have to do is introduce a new member! Manly Circle takes their parish to the State of Origin.
Looking for guest speakers?
speaker 100Province 21 has added a list of potential guest speakers, to the Circle Resources section on the Province 21 Contacts & General page of the website. This is a dynamic list so please submit speakers (to p21.newsletter@thecatenians.org.au) that have impressed at your circle or are a part of a charity or organisation you might be involved in,  this will help all circles keep their dinners entertaining and informative.
June edition of Western Link
Western Link 51 100News from Western Australia, including, the closing of Busselton Circle, Joondalup’s win in the Visitors Cup, Liwara celebrates 400 meetings and a story on the Catenians strong presence in Bangladesh is now available in the Province 20 section

Morning Tea at the oldest church in Australia
ebenezer 100An outing to the historic Ebenezer Church including morning tea is being arranged for May 9, by Carlingford Circle.
Manly's Terry Hayes on top of the Budget
terry3 100Terry shares a little of what happens behind the scenes in the Federal Budget lock-up.
Carlingford Circle - Strategy Review Observations
In seeking the input of Carlingford Circle Brothers to the current Strategy Review, the Circle Council decided that there should be a conversation about this during the dinner part of the March Circle meeting.
Membership Discussion at The Hills after a request from a lady for membership
Due to a request received from a lady from Quakers Hill for membership to the Association, Br Acting President George Doublesin, opened the floor to debate the subject of female membership.
Sister Susan Connelly reveals all on Australia's Involvement in West Papua and Timor Leste
Sr Susan 1a 100Manly heard from Sr Susan Connelly RSJ, a Sister of St Joseph, who reported on her work re West Papua and Timor Leste/East Timor. 
Brendan O'Connell, Trivia Champion
The Winner 100After the first question half the competitors had to sit down. The first question "In the TV show Mr Ed, they originally cast a Zebra as Mr Ed " was too ridiculous not to be true.
Upcoming Circle speakers and social activities
A new feature listing circle speakers and social events for the coming month, who knows we could see a speaker of interest and visit another circle?
Brother Giovanni Battiato RIP
giovanni 100Brother Lui Garozzo from Cairns Circle, who was Brother Giovanni's best friend delivering his Eulogy about Giovanni RIP. As you can imagine it was a very tearful speech for Lui to do.

Prayers for ...
hands 100Please pray for recently deceased brothers and those listed that are not well.
Provincial Events Calendar
A list of provincial events for 2019 
Provincial Councillors Reports
Reports on what's happenning around the circles. 
190223 letters 100Some great responses to the new Eastern Link.

We're always looking for ideas for new features? 

Submissions and comments are welcome, raise an issue, email -p21.newsletter@thecatenians.org.au 

Edited by: Paul Pearson p21.newsletter@thecatenians.org.au
Please let me know of any errors or bugs, if I don't know I can't fix them :-)

The Australian National Council of the Catenian Association Submission to the Plenary Council 2020

The Catenian Association is a world-wide body of Catholic men; its activities in Australia are guided by the following:

  • Our vision: that the Association in Australia becomes a valued and effective part of the Catholic Church community facilitating the mission of Christ and assisting catholic men and their families on their faith journey;
  • Our mission: to contribute to the realisation of Christ's mission, by strengthening the spiritual and family lives of Catholic laymen through the personal and collective example of faith based friendship;
  • Our Shared charism: Faith based friendship.

This is what sets us apart and defines our role in life, in the Church and in society. We are a catalyst assisting Catholic men and their families on their faith journey.

ANC Plenary Council SubmissionThere are over 30 Circles in Australia and our membership is nearly 1000. Further information can be obtained at www.thecatenians.org.au It is from this position in the Church that the Australian National Council (ANC) of the Association provides the following submission to the Plenary Council 2020. The ANC is the highest governance body of the Association in Australia and comprises elected representatives from NSW, WA, Qld and Victoria.

Read the full submission >>

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  Catenian Podcast: Who are the Catenians?

group recordinga 500From left: Cradio’s Roland McGready; John Tweedie; Terry Hayes; Graham Short; Cradio’s Charbel, who managed the Podcast.On 21 March 2019, an organisation that conducts Catholic Podcasts & Online Radio – called Cradio - interviewed Provincial President Graham Short, Provincial Secretary John Tweedie and Manly Secretary Terry Hayes for a Podcast about The Catenians.

The Podcast took the form of an informal discussion along the lines of a series of draft questions that had been distributed earlier. The recording took place at Cradio's studio in North Sydney.

podcast recording 200Graham Short behind the microphoneIssues covered included: Our backgrounds prior to joining The Catenians; Why did we become Catenians? Discussion of examples of the Catenian charism of "faith-based friendship"; What would we say to prospective Brothers? Manly Circle's adoption and development of The Friends of Catenians concept; Keeping The Catenians relevant; The future of The Catenians.

'Who are the Catenians'  is an Australian National Council initiative which will be released by Cradio in the near future.

Cradio is an independent non-profit organisation seeking to put new technologies to the service of the Church in Australia. It describes itself as Catholic Podcasts & Online Radio: Australia's source for Catholic news, talks and interviews streamed online and on-demand.

Cradio was founded in 2010 under the guidance of its Founding Director Archbishop Julian Porteous. At the heart of its activities is its mission to 'nourish the soul of the digital generation', or in the words of Pope Benedict XVI, to 'evangelise the digital continent'.

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 Ideas for Membership and Parish activities

 In order to further encourage Brothers to introduce new members Carlingford Circle Council has amended its’ “free” dinner policy to the following: 

  • Visiting Gentlemen first visit will be a guest of the Circle (no change) 
  • On the enrolment of a new Brother the Carlingford Brother who introduced him to the Circle will dine as a guest of the Circle.  

state of origin 2018 400Manly Circle are hosting a State of Origin sausage sizzle at St Kieran’s Parish Centre, for the Sunday night game in Perth on the 23rd of June. Catenians will man the BBQ and provide the sausages, bread rolls & maybe a salad? Donations will be accepted for the Augustinian Seminary  in Vietnam opening in September.

Could your circle use an activity like this to raise your profile or become more involved in your parish and who said there is no such thing as a free meal particularly for Carlingford members?

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Looking for guest speakers?

Province 21 has added a Circle Resources section on the Province 21 Contacts & General page of the website.

The top item is a dynamic list of potential guest speakers for your circle meetings, these speakers have agreed to have their contact details added to this list, for all Catenian circles in Sydney to access.

It would be great if we could have a longer list, so please submit speakers (to p21.newsletter@thecatenians.org.au) that have impressed at your circle or are a part of a charity or organisation you might be involved in,  this will help all circles keep their dinners entertaining and informative.

Second on the list is all of the rules for the various competitions in the province with a list of winners for each competition. 


Is there anything else you'd like to see in the Circle Resources section?

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  Morning Tea at the oldest church in Australia

 ebenezer250cAn outing to the historic Ebenezer Church including morning tea is being arranged for May 9, by Carlingford Circle, Bro. Rob will advise details at the April Circle meeting.
Ebenezer Church:

  • Is Australia's oldest church, est. 1809 at Ebenezer, NSW
  • Was the first non-conformist then Presbyterian Church in Australia
  • Was a pioneer in education in the colony, beginning a school in 1810. The church is the oldest extant school building in Australia.
  • The schoolmaster's residence appears to have been built in 1817 and is an excellent example along with the church of early colonial architecture designed by Andrew Johnston.
  • The fifteen pioneer families made major contribution not only to church life but also to the whole development of the colony in its infancy.

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Manly's Terry Hayes on top of the Budget

terry1 150x260Terry Hayes attended the 2019 Federal Budget media lock-up at Parliament House, Canberra.

The result was a detailed report on the Budget's tax and superannuation announcements.

It was a packed room for the 6 hours of the lock-up. This is but one of about a dozen rooms that were used for the lock-up.

The 2019-20 Budget media lock-up in Canberra. 

It was a packed room for the 6 hours of the lock-up. This is but one of about a dozen rooms that were used for the lock-up.

terry3 1000The 2019-20 Budget media lock-up in Canberra. Back left – Terry Hayes in blue shirt.

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  Carlingford Circle - Strategy Review Observations

In seeking the input of Carlingford Circle Brothers to the current Strategy Review, the Circle Council decided that there should be a conversation about this during the dinner part of the March Circle meeting. To provide some structure to the conversation Council asked Brothers for their ideas and opinions in response to the question

"What do we need to do for the Circle to still exist in ten years?"

The occasion was billed as "a collating of Brothers' ideas/opinions and not a debate on the merits of those ideas/opinions." As preparation Council encouraged Brothers to read the Topic Papers recently published by the Strategy Work Group.

The output from the conversation is summarised below:

  • Clergy to be offered membership. This could then fill a new role of circle chaplain.
    • Pluses:
      • A form of family to the clergy
      • A direct link to the parish for membership, particularly younger people.
      • Understanding of what we are about (When we determine that!)
      • Our Catholic brand has been seriously damaged of late. Perhaps this suggestion provides an opportunity to recover from some of that damage.
      • Could actively contribute to the abolishment of clericalism
  • Admission of women members on the basis that circles individually decide if they wish to remain all male or permit women over 18 years of age. Circles which have both men and women could be called combined circles (as per Probus).
  • Admission to membership of the following:
    • Lapsed Catholics of both sexes
    • Non-Catholic spouses of Catholics of both sexes.
    • People in the RCIA programs
    • People who attend mass or serve the Catholic church in some way or other but are not Catholic. i.e. teachers. Spouses of deceased Catholic women.
  • In an effort to integrate younger people into the association, look at the formation of a young people's committee in each diocese (perhaps called young Catenian Committee) by sponsoring planned (e.g. monthly) events such as music concerts, (e.g. local bands) or events which bring young people from 16 years up together from the various parishes within the diocese on a regular basis. This must be run by the young people with representatives from all circles in the diocese. These events should have some Catenian ethos, say; short prayers at the beginning and end of each event; also, appropriate advertising encouraging membership of the Association.
  • Refocus and raise our profile within the Church
    • Ensure we have a voice and that it is relevant to the wider Church
    • Don't assume that we know what needs to be done to make us relevant – actively seek out the opinion of non-members and, especially, young Catholics
    • Be true to the Jesus' teaching (Matthew 22:37) – "You must love your neighbour as yourself" both in our internal conversations and toward all those in the Church who are yet to join our Association

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  Membership Discussion at The Hills after a request from a lady for membership

Due to a request received from a lady from Quakers Hill for membership to the Association, (Br Secretary to respond in writing) Br Acting President George Doublesin, opened the floor to debate the subject of female membership.

A very hearty and vibrant debate took place with all in attendance contributing to the discussion.

Br Victor added a very good light-hearted story which helped to generate more debate.

Points -

  • Environment of men meeting with men
  • Need for a change in attitude, look around, aging factor, family age - older when having a family, commitments greater.
  • No easy solutions (now been formally discussed within Association for 8 yrs)
  • Do we need to match other community-based organisation's membership standards?
  • Ladies nights quarterly with prayers.

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Sister Susan Connelly reveals all on Australia's Involvement in West Papua and Timor Leste

Sr Susan has allowed her details to be added to our guest speakers list in Circle Resources.

 sr susan 4 400Mnaly acting president Mike Guy, Sr. Susan and John McCarneyThe Manly meeting on Wednesday 23 March 2019 heard from Sr Susan Connelly RSJ, a Sister of St Joseph, who updated us about her work re West Papua and Timor Leste/East Timor. Sister Susan has spoken to us before and was, as usual, passionate, informative and entertaining.

Sister Susan has spoken widely, among other things, about the process to redraw Australia's maritime boundaries with Timor Leste.

West Papua is under the control of Indonesia. Sister Susan said the people are very against the rule of Indonesia – they say that coming under Indonesian rule, in their view, was an act of no choice for them.

The main problem is the human rights of the people. In West Papua, Sr Connelly said it is said that about 500,000 people have died violently in the last 50 years. She said there were great similarities between East Timor and West Papua.

Sr Connelly said the United Liberation Movement of West Papua has been formed. In addition, a "Make West Papua safe" movement has been formed and aims to inform the people about their human rights.

Regarding East Timor, Sr Connelly said the thing she is most involved in is Witness K and his lawyer Bernard Collaery. This concerns the Timor Sea resources treaty (which was eventually finalised in March 2018). Witness K and Collaery alleged that Australia had spied on East Timor and were subsequently charged for allegedly communicating Australian security information. They face jail if convicted. Sr Connelly is fighting for justice for the 2 men.

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Brendan O'Connell, Trivia Champion

The Winner 600A wet and windy night drove Holy Name Wahroonga parishioners to battle in the Prouille School hall. The objective was to raise funds for Church and grounds maintenance. 21 tables filled the hall, over 200 male and female warriors stared across tables at their opponents.

Raffles, silent auctions, multiple trivia table competitions, best decorated table prizes were the order of the night, but the sought-after main prize was the individual Trivia competition where over 200 souls on their feet had to make instant decisions whether the statement made by the Quiz Master, Marty Flood was either True or False. Hands on your head for "True" hands on your rump for "false".

After the first question half the competitors had to sit down. The first question "In the TV show Mr Ed, they originally cast a Zebra as Mr Ed " was too ridiculous not to be true.

But it was false. Midway through just 20 competitors left, but there was a battle-hardened accountant from the Catenians table still fighting. He knew what to do.

Three questions later just 4 remained standing, now invited to the stage. The hyper-active crowd clapped the contestants. One question later just two remained standing.

Quiz-Master Marty Flood stared dispassionately at both of them. Brendan O'Connell the Catenian Champion glared back. Marty fired the next question, still just two left.

Then the final question "Members of Rolling Stones were nominated for the Grammy for the Verve song 'Bitter Sweet Symphony' " Marty barked "True" or "False", I need your indication now! The rest is history.

Brother Brendan O'Connell had answered 9 questions correctly in a row. This is equivalent to 1 in 512 of answering the questions correctly by chance. Brendan accepted his prize with humility.

Brother Brendan O'Connell is well known in Sydney Circles having initiated six of them out of the current 10 Sydney circles. He is a life member of the Catenian Association who visits other circles regularly.

Brendan became a Catenian when he was a foundation brother of the first Circle in Sydney, Circle 263, The City of Sydney in 1971.

Since then he initiated the six Sydney circles of -

284 Ku-ring-gai
304 Carlingford
308 Castle Hill
317 Hornsby
322 Manly
330 Harbourside North

Brendan attended the inauguration of several circles including Goa in India, Gold Coast Tweed Heads and Cairns.

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   Upcoming Circle speakers and social activities

 An opportunity to list your speakers, events and activities giving other Catenians an opportunity to join your circle for the gathering.

All of this information is gathered from circle newsletters which are sent to p21.circle.secretaries@thecatenians.org.au, please include your speakers for the next month or two with some information about them.

Let's share what's happenning in our circles. 

Date Title Detail Contact
Wednesday May 8th The Four Circles Mass for Deceased Brothers and family members 7:00pm on Wednesday May 8th at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Canyon Road, South Baulkham Hills.
Light refreshments will be served after Mass in the adjoining Parish Centre.
Thursday May 9th Morning Tea at the oldest church in Australia An outing to the historic Ebenezer Church including morning tea is being arranged for May 9, by Carlingford Circle.
Ebenezer Church: 95 Coromandel Road, Ebenezer
Wednesday May 15th Manly Circle meeting Stephen Richardson (Detective Superintendent-Retired AFP). Stephen will talk about his experiences in Sydney as well as his work overseas from Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea and Brazil, to mention a few of his postings.
Watch the video below to see some of the situations Steveve faced.
Manly Catering officer Romano DiDonato - romlaw1@tpg.com.au
Saturday May 18th Sherlock Holmes and the Ripper Murders 7:30 pm Genesian Theatre, 420 Kent Street in the city (parking station opposite) - Sherlock Holmes and the Ripper Murders, we normally gather for a pre-show meal at 5:30pm at the Spicy China chinese restaurant, just around the corner before the show at 7:30pm. Please RSVP by Friday May 3rd so we can make a group booking, you are welcome to book individually after that date and still join us for dinner at Spicy China.  paul.pearson@wieck.com.au 
Monday 10th June Ku-Ring-Gai Circle meeting The speaker for the night will be Kathryn Endicott from Catholic Mission. The Club House at The Landings, 440 Bobbin Head Road, North Turramurra.  CATERING OFFICER
Phil Davies 
Ph: 94404299 
Em: phjrdavies@gmail.com
Sunday June 23rd State of Origin St Kierans at Manly Vale - Mass at 6pm, followed by a sausage sizzle and live State of Origin from Perth at 8pm - donation for the Augustinian Seminary in Vietnam. RSVP: paul.pearson@wieck.com.au
Wednesday 19th June Manly Circle meeting Mary Anne Addington, a reniowned nature photographer,  will share her amazing images and the stories behind capturing them. A family night, wives and children are invited to join us for this gathering. Manly Catering officer Romano DiDonato - romlaw1@tpg.com.au
Thursday 11th July Harbourside North Circle meeting 250th meeting, a ladies night. Mosman Community Centre and Art Gallery, Vista Street and Art Gallery Way, Mosman CATERING OFFICER
Philip Guiney 
Mob: 0450 090 026
Em: philip.guiney@gmail.com
Thursday 8th August Gold Coast / Tweed Circle meeting 100th Circle meeting, South Tweed Sports' Club, 4 Minjungbal Drive, South Tweed CATERING OFFICER
John Brown
0488 071 969
Thursday 22nd August Parramatta Circle meeting The guest speaker will be Ken Moroney, ex NSW Police Commissioner. Lachlans Restaurant, Old Government House, Parramatta Park, Parramatta CATERING OFFICER 
Phil Russo 
9630 3310 

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Brother Giovanni Battiato RIP


Born; 4th December 1968

Went to Heaven

18th March 2019

Just a Little Letter
I just wanted to say
Everything is fine
That I got here ok
I made it to heaven
This place is really great
Family came to meet me
They were waiting by the gate
I am young again
No illness and no pain
Things I could not do on Earth
I can now do again
This place is beautiful
I feel like I have come home
There is waterfall and flowers
The green field where I roam
Please don't worry about me
For I am in good care
And when the time is right
I will meet you here
Enjoy the life you have
Cherish every single day
Just wanted you to know
That I got here ok!!!

Love Giovanni (John)


Brother Lui Garozzo, who was Brother Giovanni's best friend delivering his Eulogy about Giovanni RIP.

As you can imagine it was a very tearful speech for Lui to do.


Today we seem to be what I have told Maria, Giovanni's mum on a number of occasions over the past 9 days, it seems we are living in a dream.

Yes we all knew the inevitable was some time soon. However to be here today actually giving homage to such a beautiful man, is simple dream.

giovanni 300John sat with me some time ago, it was actually Christmas week some almost 4 months ago, that was to work through what he wanted to be said in his Eulogy Everything in this Eulogy is what Giovanni wanted to pass to his friends and family in his good bye to this world.

Yes Giovanni was organized. At the same time he was proud to show me photos of his coffin that he rests in today, along with the tomb stone that will shield him from this world in a few hours' time. Giovanni had truly come to terms with his fate. Where we here today, again feel it is a dream.
Even down to the flower lapel on my jacket, yes Giovanni even organized that for me and a few of his close friends.

Thank you to all those who respected Giovanni's wishes today, in coming along dressed brightly in Giovanni his colours. A bit hard to go unnoticed. Just like the way Giovanni liked to be.

If you are here today paying your respect to Giovanni, you don't need this Eulogy to tell you what or who Giovanni Battiato was. In short Giovanni was bigger than life itself.

If you were blind or deaf, it didn't matter one of your senses would let you know Giovanni was in the room. If it wasn't his big boisterous presence and most wonderful laugh that gave him the nickname of Moose, it was then your sense of smell would tell you Giovanni was present. Always a commanding presence of the latest men's fragrance available told you Giovanni was in the room.

If I hopped into his work car, on a few occasions borrowing it, it was like a Myers department store fragrance test card. You had no idea what you were smelling, but there was lots of it.

Giovanni first born son to Sicilian immigrants, Mario & Maria, December 1968. Making exactly 50 years of age. Giovanni is survived by his family Mum, Maria, Step Father, Alfio, younger brother Alfred, Sister in Law Marieka, and the boys Giovanni by far loved the most his beloved nephews Mason & Ethan.

Residing for the best part, in the Edmonton district. Many of us who knew the Battiato's knew them for their resilient work ethic, and those who don't know, the Battiato's talk an amazing leap of faith in the 80's building a beautiful Hotel / Motel complex and function facility in the entrance to Edmonton known as the Gateway lodge, And when I mean built it, I mean hands on, blood sweat and tears built it from the ground up. This is where Giovanni truly learnt his craft in hospitality which was far from his only job skill on his resume, it would however be truly the one he loved the most. Giovanni had proven himself on so many fronts, having worked for many local owned companies including the Hastie family, at Cairns Hardware for a number of years, Radisson at the Pier, for some years, again hands on with Lawry Tooley in his water pressure cleaning business, Sales with Ross Straguszi and Peter Hopkins at Ray White Cairns Central. Then to us lucky folk at Redlynch he was our Postmaster, owning the Australia Franchise at Redlynch for quite a number of years. Everyone knew Giovanni. Following that Giovanni put some serious efforts into working on the mines in relining and shutdowns, taking him to South Africa for many stints, and then coming together in a partnership to build a labour force work hire, and shit down maintenance business throughout PNG and further afield. I was one of the few that seen literally first hand, how Giovanni worked and lived in PNG, we often cooked for each other up there, and believe me there would be VERY few of us here that could do what he did with such resilience and enduring conditions. I know without a doubt I could never do what he did on the conditions he was dealt.

However early in 2012, I was waiting in the upper carpark of the International airport in Port Moresby. For those of you who don't know how you wait for someone in the car park in the international car park in Port Moresby. It's done like this. In one of my 360 degree pirouettes, and wishing I had eyes in the back of my head, this big imposing belly laugh comes blaring out. Yes it was Giovanni. Hugging the very life out of me I was truly shocked to see him there.

We hadn't at this stage seen each other for some best part of 15 years. We worked out. Within several months and after learning what his frustration of what had been dealt to him in PNG,

I said to Giovanni come work for me. I don't say this with a pat on my back, but directly the opposite. I had been blessed to find Giovanni, and destiny had brought us together. Likewise Giovanni had found his true passion. In hospitality and selling food. He was in his heaven on earth. To see what respect he had in the trade, you only have to look whom has attended here today. Customers that just loved Giovanni to death. I would always say to Giovanni the only thing he could be guilty of was doing too much for others and not enough for himself. Delivering 6 bunches of Parsley to Brother Tony, on a Sunday morning, from Edmonton to Palm Cove, Round trip 1 hour 20 minutes. That to Giovanni was a given in his eyes. That's simply what you do. You don't teach this stuff, it's what sits here. Having been Giovanni's last employer and dear friend, I say to everyone here. TFN will never be the same without Giovanni, but so so much richer for having had him in our lives.

Giovanni as much as he had prepared himself for the inevitable he had at Christmas time had tests to see if this sickness he had contracted was genetic or a random occurrence. He was told it was indeed random. This one factor was what hurt Giovanni so much. As we all would say "Why me"? Giovanni whilst discussing this Eulogy said how can this be fair?

Then within a blink he said this. You know Lui, God must have other things planned for me. We are told we should never have any regrets, but Giovanni did ask me to pass this on. Had he known what he knew now, he would have loved to have seen his Parents country one last time. He tossed a coin whether to fight this unforgiving disease or bite the bullet and make the best of what he had. He did what at the time for him as the best thing.

Unfortunately it didn't pay off.

Giovanni like many catholic family sons, attended St Augustine's college for his secondary schooling. Over and above Giovanni's schooling the one thing that came to the fore front was Giovanni's true unconditional love of his faith. Seeing his later years embracing and becoming involved in two organizations that seen him enjoy a whole new array of spiritual friends. That was the Fest of Three saints which we together joined several years ago. However only coming into being in charge of part of the food, Giovanni and I became the Arancini kings. We made and cooked 580 Arancini with our friends the week before the feast, and sold out by 4 pm of the feast. Giovanni however that day would learn something else that would and up seeing him resting in front of us today. We were packing up after a successful festival in Silkwood. 7th May last year. Mario Catalano needed a hand to load a coffee machine in his car. In true Moose fashion, "I can do it".

He told me in typical Giovanni fashion, Excuse me Lui, do you mind if I help Mario. He lifted a timber bench which gave him a searing pain in his chest.

It was that pain that 20 days later would be diagnosed as stage 4 pancreatic cancer.

Today we sit some almost precisely 10 calendar months later, paying our tributes. The three saints sits very close to the Battiato family, and today you will see a picture of the saints carried by Mason or Ethan, that was actually won as a raffle exactly 50 years ago, when Maria brought a ticket in Giovanni's name at the feast when Giovanni was just born. Those of you who visited Giovanni at palliative care would remember the picture directly in front of Giovanni's bed.

The second organization that Giovanni become a brother in was the Catenian Organization, a catholic men's organization, which has a very strong membership in far North Queensland. Giovanni became very much loved member of that circle, and I can say I personally have never seen one person effect such a large group of men when the news came of Giovanni's illness. It was devastating.

Giovanni's love for his family was indeed his first love and last love. If you are here, I have no need to tell you what bond exist between Giovanni and his mum. Giovanni would come to work at 4/ 4.30 am most mornings. However at 7am, you'd see Giovanni at the front of the building, ring in home to make sure mum was OK. Alfred, Giovanni's brother, was a pillar of strength for the family in the final chapter of Giovanni's life. I personally spent many phone calls with Alfred in the final months with Alfred, and the bond that came between these two brothers was truly one that only blood can create.

Mason and Ethan and Marieka, Alfio Zappala, I don't need to publically holler what Giovanni thought of all you guys. You were truly his world. You need to be proud to live on in his memory and take even the smallest of his strength and carry that forward in honour of your Son, Stepson, Brother, Brother in law, and Uncle.

Giovanni's recent dedication/commitment/ tenacity proved to be fulfilling to the extended Battiato Family by locating and reconnecting to their Cousins in Philadelphia, USA. This occurred by all things, of course Facebook. Now the families are connected and shared many stories, good times and some bad times (with family losses) but overall we are all happier with this extended Family connection.

Finally some much needed Thank you'd that Giovanni personally asked me to share with everyone today.

guard of honour 800The City of Cairns Circle Brothers provided a Guard of Honour for our beloved Brother Giovanni RIPScott I only got to meet you in the past final weeks. On behalf of the extended family thank you for your efforts. I know what you meant to Giovanni, and the care, humility and patience you gave will never be forgotten. That I promise you. To the professionals around Giovanni in his final 6 months in particular, including the team at the Cairns Base from Triage to specialist care. Thank you, Thank You Thank you. The wonderful doctors and nurses at the Cairns private. Again thank you. Finally the angels, and I mean angels at the Gordonvale Palliative care. You guys are now for me just simply the angels that god has put on this earth. The patience, the care, the understanding you hoped to Giovanni in his last weeks, days and hours.

I can only say again May you all be blessed with the same compassion in return same day, that you give tirelessly on a daily basis. Father Neil / Father Lawry Deacon Tony, Deacon Mark

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 Prayers for ...

Recently deceased -

Warwick Jones, a member of Manly and Harbourside North Circles.


Giovanni Battiato Cairns Circle.

Please also remember in your prayers -

Stan Burgin, Laurie Burns and Brian Delaney, together with Jan Burgin. Also, continue to pray for Patrick Wheeler (grandson of Barbara Kenny), Timothy Carpenter, and Christopher Carter.

The Hills
Br Milan & Mary; Jim Quinn; Paul Roberts, Peter Huby's brother. & Sylvia Fagan.

Michael Van Ommen (now living in Wollongong).


John W - seriously ill
Carmel D - enjoying remission
Peter R - not well but attends meetings
David C - not well but attends meetings


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 Provincial Events Calendar

22 July 2019 Council Meeting No 131 Broken Bay Diocese office Pennant Hills
3 August 2019 Province Mass & dinner 5pm at Holy Name Parish Church –
35 Billyard Ave Wahroonga
Hosted by Hornsby Circle -
Dinner and 90th Birthday celebrations for Brendan O'Connell and David Combe will follow at the Warrawee Bowling Club / Function Centre, 1479 Pacific Highway Warrawee
Drinks at 6:30pm and dinner at 7pm
Access is via the highway travelling East towards the city CBD
21 August 2019 O'Connell Cup Manly Circle
Meeting at Manly Golf Club, at 6:30 for 7:00pm.
Catering Officer -
Romano Di Donato romlaw1@tpg.com.au or 0407 153 626
2 October 2019 Truthful Jones City of Sydney
Catering Officer -
John Crawford 
0419 608 888 
28 October 2019 Council Meeting No 132 Broken Bay Diocese office Pennant Hills
3 February 2020 Council Meeting No 133 Broken Bay Diocese office Pennant Hills
20 February 2020 Little John Mug Canberra
Catering Officer -
John Wilson, 
02 6260 4198‬,
0467 156 236 (m)
13 March 2020 (TBC)  Province Golf Day Course to be confirmed
4 May 2020 (TBC) AGM and Council Meeting No 134 Broken Bay Diocese office Pennant Hills
22 - 23 August 2020 ANC National Conference Sydney


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Provincial Councillors Reports

Provincial Council Meeting No 130 29 April 2019

Provincial Councillor Reports

Highlights -

Canberra are using revised meeting procedures, including a shortened meeting for Ladies Nights, with only essential business being conducted.

Harbourside North is trying a reduced fee for under 45 year old members.

The Hills are continuing with a ladies night each quarter, the week before the monthly meeting.

Hornsby Circle reports on the difficulty of filling office bearers roles.

Manly also report difficulty filling the membership officer role.


City of Cairns Circle 349

RECENT DEVELOPMENTS – A large amount of Circle Brothers attended Brother Giovanni's RIP funeral. They gave a Guard of Honour when he left St Monica's Cathedral to be buried. Our Circle Chaplain Fr Neil conducted the service accompanied by Rev Brother Deacon's Tony Moor and Brother Mark Cavicchiolo it was a very moving ceremony. Brother Giovanni RIP was the first Brother in City of Cairns Circle to pass away.

Report on recent Social activities:
Brothers now have started a walking and cycling sessions which are organised by Brothers Gary and Simon, they are hoping to meet twice a week.

We now have three Brothers in the pipeline and hopefully Mario Catalano will be enrolled into our Circle soon.

The Brothers are meeting for lunch at Rev Brother Tony's place; Chill Café. Brother Joe is to speak with Fr Neil to fix a date for our President's Mass. Rev Brother Mark Cavicchiolo is holding lunchtime meetings once a month to speak about the Bible.

The City of Cairns Circle gave a warm welcome to Brother Graham Short on his recent visit to our Circle. Brother Graham gave an insight to what is happening in our Province 21 at the moment, e.g. the ANC, Circles growth in India etc.

On the same evening we also had ex-chief Detective Ron Iddles as our guest speaker which gave an insight into the many murders and convictions of the people responsible he had been involved with.

Brother Peter Cash
Date: 20th April 2019

Canberra Circle 331


  • The Circle held its AGM on 11 April. This was followed by the Circle's monthly meeting.
  • New members of the Circle Council for 2019–20 were installed at the monthly meeting. The new members are: Brian Fish (President), Mike Trevethan (Vice-President), Denis Wylks (Secretary) and John Wilson (Catering Officer). Peter Sharman replaced Arthur Ringer as the Circle's Website Manager in January 2019.
  • At its March meeting, the Circle had a discussion of issues to be included in a Circle submission to the Strategy Work Group. The Circle has now lodged a submission with the Strategy Work Group.
  • 7 members and their wives attended a theatre night on 29 March.


  • With the enrolment of one new member at our April meeting, the Circle now has 49 members, and we expect to enrol another member at our May meeting. There are other potential members who have attended as guests.


  • The Circle events program is available on the Association website.


  • The Circle has been participating in the trial of simplified meeting procedures. These are not a radical departure from the existing procedures and they appear to be working well (although the views of Circle members on the new arrangements have not been canvassed formally). The new procedures are less formal than the 'official' meeting procedures, although meetings are still recognisable as distinctly Catenian. The revised procedures mainly involve changes to the opening and close of a Circle meeting, not using the gavel, using a response for prayers of intercession that reflects Australian usage, some changes in the enrolment of new members and the option of shortened meetings on ladies nights (with only essential business being conducted).


  • None.

Name: John McWilliam
Date: 24 April 2019

Carlingford Circle 304

Gold Coast Tweed Circle 357

Summary of meeting with Bros Seamus McCarthy, Paul Bellhouse, Alex Lever and Andrew Denny on 18 April at Tweed Art Gallery Murwillumbah.


  • Changes to Circle officers: Registrar Bernard Nolan
    Chamberlain Chris McGlinchy.
  • Report on recent Social activities: Circle maintains extra curricular activities.


  • Proposals for Circle membership expansion: agreed 1: 1 approaches best
  • GCT now has 3 octogenarian members.
  • Changes to membership since the last Council meeting .
  • New members Terry Collins and Kevin Devine (re-enrolment)
  • Darryl Greer and Nick Shaw


  • 100th meeting on 2nd Thursday of AUGUST needs to be publicised to other Circles and in Province 21 Newsletter, P21 website and Eastern Link
  • Smart casual.
  • Parishioners, ladies and clergy – Bishop Gregory Homening to be invited.
  • The 357 Players will stage a 4 Act "Mellowdrama"


  • GCT queries women's membership and wonders how transfers could be made if Circles have option for different membership types.
    When men gather it is different dynamic to having women present.

Graham Short
Provincial Councillor
Date 18 04 19

Harbourside North Circle 330


Changes to Circle officers: Bro Len Lozina remains President for another year with Bro Jim Phelan VP, Bros Phil Guiney and Chris Bradley will share the Welfare Officer role.


  • Membership stands at 31 with transfer from Parramatta of Bro Xavier Lim in March and induction/enrolment of Lachlan McGoldrick in April.
  • Circle Council announced reduced annual fees for Brothers under 45 (50%) to try to encourage younger members to join (note that this will cover the new members capitation fee).
  • 3 "prospects" in the 'pipeline'.


  • Movie night in May. [VP Jim organises occasional movie nights for Brothers & wives at Cremorne Orpheum followed by a dinner.]
  • 250th meeting and Ladies night dinner 11 July.
  • Participation in the Mary's House fundraising walk in October to help raise funds for Mary's House, a refuge in Our Lady of The Way Parish for families affected by domestic violence.


  • Any issues / developments / initiatives / concerns to share with Council


  • Circle Council announced reduced annual fees for Brothers under 45 (50%) to try to encourage younger members to join.

Ed van Riet
Provincial Councillor 330 Harbourside North.
25 April 2019

The Hills Circle 308


  • Incoming Pres., is Gorge Doublesin ;V-P is Victor Gauci , all others unchanged
  • Had a most successful Ladies night in March


  • Will be doing presentations at parishes of Kenthurst & Blacktown
  • Michael Kenny transferring to The Shire Group
  • Have a potential new member in pipeline..


  • Nil


  • Nil

Continuing with Ladies night each quarter, week previous to monthly meeting

Name: Paul Despoges
Provincial Councillor
Date 22/4/19

Hornsby Circle 317


  • The recent changes to our Circle Officers for 2019-20 were Louis Hortense as President and Pasquale Vartuli as Vice-President. Our major Office Bearers are:
    President: Louis Hortense
    Vice President: Pasquale Vartuli
    Secretary: Pat Moran
    Treasurer: Geoff Young
    Provincial Councillor: Geoff Young
    Catering Director: Greg McNally
  • Last month, we had a Ladies night when Brother Greg McNally spoke about Fr Julian Tennyson-Woods who also managed to combine his priestly duties with being an extraordinary geologist.


  • A proposal is being put together to address masses in the Kuringai parish (Berowra and Asquith)
  • Members have also volunteered to help Br Chris Vale at masses on the Central Coast
  • We had a recent resignation for Max Arnett. Max, not a spring chicken, was finding life exhausting especially looking after his 107 (or 108) year old mother who lives at Coffs Harbour.


  • The Circle Council has started planning for the Provincial mass on 3 August 2019. A draft notification flyer is attached which we will sent out soon for secretaries to put in the monthly newsletter. More details are to come at a later date. It is proposed that Brothers attending will pay their circle treasurer, who will forward the money to Hornsby. Cost is expected to be $60 per head for dinner and drinks during the meal.


Our major issue is filling the office bearers. Many Brothers have already done their share over the years and we have a very aging group of Brothers. We need more younger brothers to join us and step up.


  • Nothing to report

Geoff Young
Provincial Councillor
20 April 2019

Ku-ring-gai Circle 284

Changes to Circle officers
President: Paul Rubenach
Vice President: Stim Robinson
Secretary: Antony Orton
Treasurer: Ken Anania
Membership: Steve Swain
Registrar: Ian Gibson
Marshall: John Boland
Provincial Councillor: Martin Stebbings

Report on Social Activities

The January meeting was our annual Joint meeting with the Hornsby Circle. Entertainment for the night was a music quiz, conducted by Brother John White.
At our February meeting two of our relatively new brothers , Reg Gibbons and Michael Costin entertained us with brief autobiographical talks.
At our March meeting our guest speakers were three of the attendees at last year's World Youth Meeting, Brother Luke Samson , Katrina Pratt and Jehan Parerer.
At our April meeting, our new President Brother Paul Rubenach, showed a video on and commented upon the Catenian Bursary Fund. This was followed by a lively discussion as to possible initiatives that could be followed.
On February 17, the annual Kupit Shield golf competition was held with the Pittwater Circle at the Palm Beach Golf Club.
On March 15, a very successful Provincial Golf Day was held organised this year by Brother Stim Robinson.
On February 23, thirty brothers and wives attended a very enjoyable production of "Senior Moments" at the Chatswood Entertainment Centre preceded by a dinner at an Italian style restaurant.

Proposals for Circle membership expansion.
This is a continuous and ongoing activity headed by Brother Steve Swain.
We have a number of potential new members in the pipe line.
Changes in membership since the last council meeting.
We have had three resignations that of Bruce Wallis who has moved to Western Australia, Lionel Jayaraj and Peter Meers.

The Guest Speakers at our June meeting will be Kathryn Endicott from Catholic Mission.
Brother Stefan Wawrzniak is planning to hold talk on Catholicism Today on a Saturday in July.

Regrettably, we are now looking for a new venue for our meetings, as our present venue, The Landings, has new managers who have advised us that the Club House will no longer be available.

Justin Gardener
Martin Stebbings
April 22,2019

Manly Circle 322

Manly Circle initiated a discussion among members on the future of the Circle at it's February meeting. The chat bought forward lots of positive views and ideas, a very invigorating positive night for all members Points raised by members -

  • While favouring more involvement for women, he did not favour admitting women as members. He thought the way things worked at the moment eg. with Ladies Nights and the ladies involvement with Friends was working really well. He applauded the invitation for women to attend our meetings.
  • Ladies should be welcomed as members but queried whether it would need to be accepted nationally. Can we say that wives of members are automatically involved in the Circle? It was suggest however that wives may not be too keen to attend meetings (at least one wife had no interest in attending our meetings).
  • Targets for new membership should be those heading towards retirement (younger people tend to be time poor with families, schooling, etc).
  • Circles needed to guard against becoming cliques.
  • Friends of Catenians concept as a way of getting women involved.
  • It would be good to get Catenians to be part of everyday parish life.
  • On the point of organising events eg through Friends or otherwise, it's important that such tasks didn't fall to one person, this task should be spread around and involve more Brothers.
  • Provincial Council is talking about use of the Provincial website for example to look at what speakers different Circles have had/are having.
  • We should work with the parishes more closely. We should word notices for parish bulletins carefully and extend open invitations as a way of meeting new people. Peter suggested a good source of speakers would be Caritas, St Vincent de Paul, Catholic Missions, etc.
  • Getting the Catenian message out is extremely important.
  • No issue with women joining, but suggested we need to start with men, we can be an outreach for lonely people, etc.
  • Since joining Catenians it has become a major part of his life ever since, it's one of the big 3 things in his life – the parish, Catholic Walkers and the Catenians.
  • To grow, we need to create interest in the Catenians, organise good guest speakers and then advertise that in parish bulletins. Suggestions for speakers should be well organised and planned months in advance.

Brendan O'Connell – said he was very encouraged to hear the discussion tonight. A way of seeking new members would be to invite people to a Catenian dinner as a first step. He encouraged the Circle to "keep the good work going" and said he was very optimistic that the Circle would be doing well in 10 years time.

Our meeting on Wednesday 23 March 2019 heard from Sr Susan Connelly RSJ, a Sister of St Joseph, who updated us about her work re West Papua and Timor Leste/East Timor. Sister Susan has spoken to us before and was, as usual, passionate, informative and entertaining.
The April meeting heard from Fr Tan osa who will speak about his refugee journey from Vietnam to Australia, and his Augustinian project of building a priory in Vietnam.


  • We have not been able to fill the Membership Officer role as yet
  • Friends of Catenians continues to be our focus for new members but no conversions as yet.


  • Saturday 18th May - Sherlock Holmes and the Ripper Murders at the Genesian Theatre
  • Sunday 14th July - Bastille Day – Long Lunch in Provence
  • Stephen Richardson, retired AFP officer is our May speaker, talking about his many journeys in peace keeping forces O/S
  • Many Anne Addington, a nature (mostly) bird photographer, will be speaking and presenting her fantastic images at our June Family night.


  • We still have been unable to get a Circle member to take on the role of Membership Officer.
  • An update on our meeting procedures trial, the new procedures have been in use for some months now and are enthusiastically accepted for a more casual meeting atmosphere while keeping the structures of the classic meeting procedures, our visitors and the ladies we've invited into meetings have all commented positively on our prayers etc..


  • Our lack of a membership officer and the annual challenge finding a vice-president, what can we do to change that dynamic which appears to be spread across the association?

Paul Pearson
Manly Provincial Councillor

Parramatta Circle 333


Circle Council is as follows:

  • President Michael Lilley
  • Vice President Chris Worthington (not progressing to President)
  • Secretary Peter Murney
  • Treasurer Mel Waters
  • Registrar Peter Smith
  • Chamberlain Joe Allan
  • Provincial Councillor Ed van Riet
  • Welfare Officer Chris Worthington
  • Catering Officer Phil Russo
  • A memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed last week by Brother President Michael Lilley and Brother Eugene Das representing their respective Circles in a twinning arrangement between City of Parramatta Circle and Andheri Circle, Mumbai, India.


  • Brother Michael Lilley has been working on a Facebook page for the Circle over the past eight months and he announced recently that it is almost ready to go live. This idea came about from discussions at Council about membership and having some means of telling prospective Brothers what we do and providing them with a more visible point of online contact.
  • Membership stands at 24. No prospects in the pipeline.


  • Ken Moroney, ex NSW Police Commissioner is guest speaker for Parramatta Circle August meeting on 22nd August

Ed van Riet
Provincial Councillor, City of Parramatta Circle 333.
27th April, 2019

Pittwater Circle 312


changes to Circle Officers for 2019/20 as follows

President...Peter McDonald
Vice President...Peter Veney
Treasurer....Graham Roney
Membership...Michael Maynard

All other officers remain the same as 2018/2019

Report on Social activities

December....Christmas meeting and Ladies Night
January....Joint Meeting with Warringah Circle
February...Delayed Kupit Shield Golf day with Ku-ring-gai.
March...President Mass...Ladies Night

Membership Developments

Pittwater will have 2 new enrolments. One at our May meeting. One at our June meeting

Notable Highlights..

April Visit from Our National Council George Kazs - President., Ralph Fitzpatrick - Vice President, John Secker – secretary, Paul Day – Treasurer, Chris Vale - Incoming Province 21 President, Keith Morgan - Member of National Council, Peter Walsh - Member of National Council, Graham Short - outgoing president of Province 21, Eugene Das - member of India Co –Ordinating Council , (who will be speaking at our May Meeting), Roland McGready - Chair of Cradio.

The team did Pittwater proud.

Pittwater have sent a questionnaire to all members asking a series of questions to Gauge member involvement and what they are thinking. We will have results by June end.

Peter McDonald

City of Sydney Circle 263


  • Circle Officers for 2019 -20 have been installed; Welfare Officer has been added to the range of Circle Officers. Circle Office holders are:
    President: Frank Filocamo
    Vice President: Peter Gialouris
    Secretary: Peter O'Reilly
    Treasurer: John Crawford
    Marshall: Terry McNamara
    Chamberlain: Tony Stagnitta
    Registrar: Joe McGuinness
    Membership: Bob O'Mara
    Provincial Councillor: Peter Tilbrook
    Welfare Officer: Bob O'Mara
  • Several brothers from the Circle have continued to provide support to brother Provincial Membership Officer as Joint Members of The Shire Group or visitors to its meetings..

Report on recent Social activities:

  • The guest speaker at the Circle's March meeting was Paul McStay, a former Scottish National Football Captain who played for Celtic FC from 1982 to his retirement in 1997, leading the Club as Captain for the final seven years of his football career. Paul made his full national team debut in 1983 and represented Scotland 76 times, including appearances at two World Cups in 1986 and 1990, during a 14-year international career. In mid-1982 he captained Scotland to victory in the UEFA European Under-18 Championship. This is the only major trophy to date, won by any Scottish national football team. He captained each of the Scotland teams from under-16 level through under-18, under-20, under-21 and at full National team level. Paul comes from a family steeped in Football tradition. great-uncles, Jimmy and Willie McStay, were former Celtic captains, and his brothers Willie and Raymond also played for Celtic. His nephew, John, played with Celtic Boys Club before moving onto Motherwell under 19s and later played for Ayr United as a defender. One of Paul's sons, Chris, has played football for Sutherland Sharks and is currently in the UK playing with Clyde. In 2010, Paul moved to live in Sydney with his wife Anne Marie' and their six children. He now runs Maestro Sports, a start-up software company specialising in sport coaching and management.
  • Fourteen brothers and their ladies attended the Circle's Annual President's Mass at St Patricks Church Hill on Sunday 31 March. A lunch of robust German food accompanied by Bavarian beer and some excellent Australian wines followed at the Bavarian Beerhaus in York Street.
  • Guest speaker at the April meeting was Jack McNeill who is the grandson of Veronica and Bob O'Mara. Jack is studying for his HSC this year and was the recipient of a assistance from the Circle for an Jesuit emersion programme trip to the Philippines. He was very ably assisted in his oral and slide presentation by Chris Gould, a programme coordinator and master at Saint Aloysius College, Milsons Point. Jack talked about his time in Bagong Silang where they toiled with the locals on a building project, helping them as best they could. He then moved on to Muntinlupa, a city of 500,000 souls before travelling to the Province of Bulacon and the town of Bustos where he worked in nursing homes. Travelling further north to Kiangan he lived and ate with the local families. Chris then talked about the Jesuit schools emersion experience programme during which students visit communities in the Phillipines and countries in South east Asia where the Congregation has missions as part of their gaining of knowledge of the circumstances of people living on the "other side of the tracks". They also help the people of Timor Leste with schools, medication such as antibiotics and food. Cambodia is high on the list for humanitarian aid especially with all the refugees from Myanmar.


  • Brothers of the Circle have congratulated brother Tony Wales AM on his Award, announced in the 2019 Australia Day Honours List. The award recognises Tony's significant service to the community, the Church, indigenous people and the performing arts through philanthropic and social welfare initiatives.


  • The next significant event in the Circle's social programme will be the annual Foundation Dinner and Ladies Night on Wednesday 3 July.


The Circle has now held three meetings using the Trial meeting procedures, one of which was the January joint meeting with Parramatta Circle. The meetings have proceeded smoothly and the response of those attending has been positive.

Peter Tilbrook
Date: 26 April 2019
Warringah Circle 328

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Plenary submission

Congratulations to all of those who contributed to the Catenian Plenary 2020 submission!
A great model for the church and Catenians to follow into the future.

Paul Pearson
Manly Circle

Eastern Link

Dear Paul,
Many thanks from the City of Sydney Circle 263 for a brilliant presentation of the Eastern Link and the ability to access the Western Link.
It is wonderful that the Link has been revised since Bro. Peter Cash retired from producing it.

Kind regards.
Peter O'Reilly 

Hi Paul.
Greetings from the UK.
Thanks for the super Eastern Link, looks really good and plenty in there to digest, thanks for putting the Cairns items in.
Also, thanks for sharing what goes on in other Circle's which is important to all member of our Association.

Have a great week and kind regards.
Peter Cash

Hi Paul,
Great publication, thank you.

Paul Despoges

Raise an issue or send your comments to p21.newsletter@thecatenians.org.au

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