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School prayer services commemorate John Paul II

Students from Catholic schools from all over Australia are joining representatives from Catholic agencies, parishioners and dignitaries in local cathedrals and churches, to celebrate the life of Pope John Paul II.

In Sydney, Parramatta Diocese Bishop Kevin Manning will preside over a Requiem Mass for the Repose of the Soul of Pope John Paul II at 7:30 in St Patrick's Cathedral. In Broken Bay Diocese, Bishop David Walker will celebrate Mass at Our Lady of Dolours Church, Chatswood, also tonight at 7:30 pm. Similar services are taking place around the country.

Parramatta Catholic Education Offices says schools have also been conducting their own memorial and prayer services throughout the week.

"This is a significant and historical moment for our Catholic schools," said Dr Anne Benjamin, Executive Director of Schools in the Parramatta Diocese. "For our students it marks the death of the only Pope they have known and allows us to reflect on his contribution to the church."

"As a great educator, John Paul II had a special tenderness for children and youth. He also had a deep and abiding love of intellectual pursuit of truth and a profound respect for teachers," she said. "Our Catholic school communities are grateful for his inspiring spiritual leadership. The Mass on Thursday evening will provide us with the opportunity to commemorte his life together as a diocesan family."

The Catholic Weekly quotes Br Kelvin Canavan, executive director of schools for the Sydney archdiocese, who said that Pope John Paul II "taught students around the world the greatest life lesson of all, by living out a life of service and love himself/"

"Memorial prayer services, reflections and biographical information on the Holy Father has been made available to assist schools in preparing for these commemorations," he said.

Students join Catholic community to remember John Paul II (Catholic Education Office, Parramatta 6/4/05)
School prayer services to commemorate John Paul II (Catholic Weekly 10/4/05)
15,000 expected at SA Pope service (The Courier Mail 6/4/05)
The Melkite Catholic Church mourns the Death of the Holy Father (Melkite Catholic Eparchy of Australia and New Zealand 5/4/05)
Goulburn Catholics grieve 'great man' (Goulburn Post 6/4/05)
Church mourns Pope of peace (Macleay Argus 6/4/05)
Cec's brother [Cardinal Cassidy] was Pope's right hand man (Milton .. Times 6/4/05)
Pope's funeral goes to air live (Herald-Sun 7/4/05)
Latin requiem mass for Pope planned for Friday (Sunday Times Perth 6/4/05)
Pope John Paul II (Melbourne Catholic Commission for Justice, Development and Peace 6/4/05)

7 Apr 2005