Mr ALBANESE (Grayndler—Leader of the House and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport) (09:57): I rise today to congratulate Father Joachim Rego from the parish of St Brigid’s Marrickville in my electorate of Grayndler for his election in Rome at the Superior General of the Passionist Order of the Catholic Church.
Father Joachim was born in Myanmar in August 1954 and migrated to Marrickville with his family as a teenager. He attended high school at De La Salle College in Marrickville, which is now Casimir Catholic College, before joining the Passionists in 1975. He professed his first vows in 1976 and was ordained a priest in 1981.
Joachim worked for 18 years in Papua New Guinea as regional Vicar, Novice Master and Formator, and was President of the Conference of Major Superiors of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. He worked as Novice Master in the Indian Vicariate of the Passionists Congregation and also in the parish of St Brigid’s Marrickville prior to his election as Provincial Superior in 2007.
Joachim is the eldest son of Mr and Mrs George and Celina Rego of Marrickville. His brother, Father Aloysius Rego, is the regional Vicar of the Discalced Carmelite Friars in Australia-Oceania. His sister Bernadette and brother Valerian live in Marrickville with their spouses and children.
St Brigid’s church is just a short walk from my electorate office in Grayndler. It is well known throughout the community of the inner west for its charitable works and its commitment to social justice. My son was baptised there.
At the end of last year, I attended a function at Marrickville Town Hall to celebrate the 125th Jubilee of the arrival of the Passionists at St Brigid’s in Marrickville. It was a wonderful community celebration attended by members of the parish but also members of the wider community. This is a wonderfully inclusive community that goes out of their way to celebrate the multiculturalism that makes Marrickville such a diverse, interesting and vibrant community.
In addition to the church, the parish also includes St Brigid’s Primary School and Casimir Catholic College—two schools that have provided a quality education to many thousands of local families in my electorate over the years, including to Father Joachim himself.
I congratulate Father Joachim on his achievement and wish him the best of success as he embarks on a new chapter of his life in Rome.