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From our Bishop

The month of December is a season of anticipation and also a chance to look back over the year that has past. Both globally and domestically the year has been very mixed. Even now many are still struggling with disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and other difficulties.

On top of all this, preparations for Christmas are in full swing in our local shopping centres. Planning for travel may be a little uncertain with possible border closures, nevertheless there is anticipation of seeing someone after a long time. All of this builds excitement and expectancy for many. Hopefully we can open our homes in hospitality.

Read Bishop Robert’s full message >

Bishop Robert McGuckin
Bishop of Toowoomba
December 2021

Horizons, published by us, is our own quarterly magazine. It’s full colour and available for free across the Diocese. Horizons is an important method of communication and outreach to parishioners and the wider community. It features stories of events and projects from local parishes as well as information about ministry and services offered by Diocesan Agencies.

  • Fifth Plenary Council Begins

    As Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB opened the Fifth Plenary Council of Australia, he said Catholics “must become, even more than we are already, a community of true disciples”.
    The Plenary Council, the first such gathering in Australia since 1937, is being celebrated across nine months, bookended by assemblies from October 3-10 and in July 2022. Read more about the Plenary Council and hear from our Plenary Members, starting page 8.

  • St Monica’s Oakey Centenary

    On Sunday 12 September St Monica’s School Oakey marked their centenary. Celebrations began on Saturday night with a special dinner where guests enjoyed a nostalgic evening with memorabilia
    and speeches from past principals.
    On Sunday, Bishop Robert McGuckin celebrated Mass and blessed the school’s new prayer labyrinth. A labyrinth was chosen as it is a universal and inclusive sacred space that welcomes all faith traditions. Read more about the centenary celebrations on page 29.

  • Organ-ic Music on the Menu

    The Organ Society of Queensland (OSQ) held an Organ Ramble in Toowoomba on 11 September to visit a variety of organs across the Garden City. The ramble visited St Patrick’s Cathedral, St Luke’s Anglican Church and Lifeworks Uniting Church. The event coincided with the annual Carnival of Flowers, so the title of “Organ-ic: The Toowoomba Festival of Organ Music” was aptly bestowed by the OSQ Committee. Read more about the organ recital on page 34.

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Most Reverend Robert McGuckin DD MCL JCL

Bishop Robert McGuckin was born in 1944 in Marrickville, Sydney. His parents John and Gladys are now both deceased, as is one of his four siblings. His family comprises his eldest sister Janice, his elder brother Edward and his younger brother Patrick and their children.

The Bishop received his early education at St Pius Primary School in Enmore and later at De La Salle College in Marrickville.

After he left school, the family moved to Jannali in Sutherland shire where he became a foundation member of the Como-Oyster Bay-Jannali Catholic Youth Organisation. He worked for several years in banking before entering the seminary at Saint Columba’s College in Springwood in 1967 and then to Saint Patrick’s College in Manly as a candidate for ordination for the Archdiocese of Sydney and was duly ordained in 1973 by Archbishop James Carroll.

The Bishop’s Coat of Arms

The Bishop’s Coat of Arms traditionally consists of two halves. The left half is the crest of the Diocese, the right, of the Bishop himself.