Shane Taylor
Head of Faith and Mission

As we prepare to commemorate and celebrate Reconciliation Week, we continue to seek ways of healing, justice, and joy for all who call the Great South Land home and as participate in and contribute to the conversations about the Voice to Parliament. Fr Andrew Hamilton SJ, the Melbourne Jesuit, writes:

We Australians are still coming to terms with the consequences of invasion, settlement and exclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. Among the descendants of the later arrivals is a will for reconciliation, but not if it costs. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians desire recognition that they are the original Australians but insist that it must be accompanied by measures that give them an assured voice in shaping the policies, laws and administrative regulations that affect their lives.

Our land reflects your face, O God – Ever-ancient, always new.
We give thanks and praise to God.

Our land sounds with your voice,
O God – calling for justice and peace.
We give thanks and praise to God.
Our land breathes with your life, O God – the spirit alive in your people.
We give thanks and praise to God.
God of Holy Dreaming, Great Creator Spirit,
from the dawn of creation, you have given your children the good things of Mother Earth. You spoke, and the gum tree grew.
In the vast desert and the dense forest,
and in the cities and at the water’s edge, creation sings your praise.
Your presence endures at the rock at the heart of our Land.
When Jesus hung on the tree,
you heard the cries of all your people and became one with your wounded ones:
the convicts, the hunted, the dispossessed.
The sunrise of your Son coloured the earth anew and bathed it in glorious hope.
In Jesus, we have been reconciled to you, to each other and to your whole creation.
Lead us on, Great Spirit, as we gather from the four corners of the earth;
enable us to walk together in trust from the hurt and shame of the past
into the full day which has dawned in Jesus Christ.
We make this prayer through Christ, our Lord.