Mary MacKillop to become Australia’s first saint

Pope Benedict XVI has announced that Mary MacKillop will be canonised on Sunday 17 October 2010.

In December of last year the Pope recognised MacKillop’s second miracle, which was the cure of a woman of inoperable lung cancer during the 1990s. The first was the cure of a woman of leukaemia in the 1950s.

In 1883 Mary MacKillop sent three sisters from Adelaide to Temuka to establish a school. She visited New Zealand four times between 1894 and 1902, travelling throughout the country to visit the sisters and encourage them in their work.

Sister Colleen Keeble, the Provincial Leader of New Zealand, says Mary loved New Zealand.

“She was very much at home here. She loved the climate and the people,” she says.

“Mary no longer belongs to just the sisters, but to all people and her canonisation will acknowledge that she is a saint for the world.”