Growth in indigenous baptisms
FRANCISCAN Friar Dominic Levak and West Wyalong Mission Parish Priest Fr Emil Milat, combined again recently to extend Sacramental and pastoral care to the Aboriginal Catholic community of Lake Cargelligo.
Fr Milat says there is steady growth in the number of Indigenous Baptisms taking place “out west”.
“Br Dominic OFM* is able to meet the Aboriginal people in their time frame not being restrained by the often ‘appointment’ based culture of modern life,” Fr Milat said.
“He just sits and listens to them, just ‘being’ with them and as a result requests for Baptism of the children have sprung up.”
According to Fr Milat, Br Dominic has been breaking new ground following the Holy Spirit’s lead in re-developing the semi-contemplative dimension of Franciscan Spirituality that the Order has let fade away somewhat over time.
“With his Superior’s approval Br Dominic is undergoing a life of prayer and solitude at a beautiful chapel at Bolo,” Fr Milat said.
“The chapel was built by a local farmer that is gaining wider appeal as a pilgrimage site,”
“It’s about 28 kilometres north of the small town of Tullibigeal with 18kilometres of it being dusty dirt roads.
“Once a week Br Dominic goes on mission to Lake Cargelligo and over the border to the Condobolin Parish in the Diocese of Wilcannia-Forbes.
“When there, he shares the gift of God’s love (gained in prayer and contemplation) with the local Aboriginal people in the area.”
The Conventual Franciscan Brother and Fr Milat were joined by family and other parishioners as they celebrated the Baptisms of a number of Indigenous members.
A barbecue in the park situated by Lake Cargelligo followed the Baptisms, while a decorated cake donated by the local ‘fisho’ (takeaway shop) was described as ‘lovely’.
*is the acronym for Order Franciscan Minor