Message from Cardinal Napier O.F.M
St. Francis Xavier Parish, Bluff
Dear Parishioners of St Francis Xavier on the Bluff,
One of the great gifts that God has given us is the ability to remember the past. We can and do have a wide variety of reasons for doing so. But when we remember the past from the faith perspective, our remembering takes on an entirely new and different meaning.
It is because when we look back in faith, we cannot but be filled with appreciation and gratitude for the wonderful things that God has done for us, not least the wonderful people whom he has brought into our lives. And he has done this invariably to give us a clear and unmistakable sign of just how much he loves and cares for each and every one of us.
Although he loves and cares for all that he has created, those whom he has chosen and called to be one with his Son Jesus through baptism and the Gospel way of life, he loves even more. Indeed, he loves us as much as he loves his Beloved Son, since we form part of His Son’s Body, the Church.
As you at St. Francis Xavier come together to celebrate 125 years of your parish’s existence as a “community of Disciples of Jesus”, I congratulate you and thank you. You have given witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ by your fidelity to the Christian life and the Catholic tradition and by the way you prepare and participate, that the Eucharist is important to you as a community and as individuals.
At the same time that I congratulate and thank you, I also urge you to intensify your spiritual life, but also the love and care that you have for each other. After all it is your vocation to witness to the world and the Church that you are indeed Disciples of Jesus who take seriously his injunction that love and care are the signs that we are his.
May our Lady of the Immaculate Conception intercede for you, so that you may continue to grow in grace, in truth and in love for God, for your neighbour and for each other.
+ Wilfrid Card. Napier OFM
Archbishop of Durban
24 July 2005
Message from Cardinal Napier | Message from Fr Stuart Bate OMI | Forward: Professor Joy Brain | Introduction | A history of the St Francis Mission | Establishment of the Church at Fynnland | The Church at Wentworth | Centralisation of St Francis Xavier and Building of the New Church | The Building of the Parish Hall | The Building of the New Presbytery | The Building of the Wall of Remembrance | The Architectural meaning of the New Church | Your Church in Rhyme by Fr Andy Slowey | The Human Contribution to the Growth of the Parish | Groups and Organisations that have contributed to the Parish | Current Groups within the Parish | Local Vocations | Awards and Recognition | An Armchair tour of the Parish | The Shrine to Our Lady of Natal | Landholdings of the Catholic Church on the Bluff | A Portrait of the Life and Times of St Francis Xavier | Picture Gallery | Timeline of incidents of the Bluff Parish