Little Sisters of Jesus in Australia, Australia's new saint.

When Mary Mackillop was canonised as Australia's first Saint and it was one of the year's highlights. She was born in 1842 in Fitzroy, Melbourne, the eldest of 6 children to Scottish parents. She co-founded the Sisters of St Joseph with Fr Tenison Woods and she spent much of her time travelling through the bush visiting her convents and fostering the education system she began with Fr Tenison. Mary Mackillop was a real heroine who gave her life in the service of others. She lived out and incarnated an ideal of Christian service to those at the margins. I think the canonisation was a positive experience both for Australia and Catholics. 8000 pilgrims from Australia attended the canonisation in Rome .The main places of celebration in South Australia were at Penola, South East of the state where Mary started the Sisters of St Joseph, the new religious order, and in Adelaide. Here, in Adelaide there was a 4 kilometre walk to the Cathedral through the city comprising of two and a half thousand pilgrims. The following excerpt from one of Mary's letters gives an illustration of her spirit: ‘Poor little soul. He'd come to us from the streets, starving almost, Mick his name was. Sister Aloysius sent him to me that first week. He came siding up to me reluctantly, eyes down, terror in every movement. He said in a quavering voice: “Sister says I have to tell you, I stole a bun from the kitchen”. I put my arm around him, “Were you hungry?”  He nodded. He was twisting his hands together in a combination of misery and fright. That movement alone told of long months of abuse and fear. “Well, you go back to Sister and tell her I said to give you another bun”. That was our job, it seemed to me,  to turn hunger and fear and misery into joy.’