Relief Work

MSC relief work provides basic support to people in emergency situations. Relief is provided in response to natural disasters, such as earthquakes, or other situations such as famine or conflict.

In these emergency situations, direct assistance such as the distribution of clothing, food, seeds, tools or temporary housing, may be provided.

Relief measures provide life-sustaining assistance aimed at the communities directly affected by the disaster.

Papua New Guinea Drought Appeal

posted Oct 13, 2015, 4:00 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia   [ updated Dec 3, 2015, 9:15 PM ]

Container for Vanuatu

posted May 18, 2015, 8:59 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia

Dear Friends,

Late Autumn greetings - we hope you have been well. 

We are pleased to inform you that our next container appeal is now in full swing, this time for cyclone devastated Vanuatu.

Fr. Adrian has received correspondence from Bishop Jean Bosco Beremes SM requesting items for the devastated schools, kindergartens and displaced families: desks, chairs, computers, laptops, library books, household items (crockery, cutlery etc), furniture, stationary, sporting items, tools etc. We have also obtained approval to send tinned food - these would be most welcome.

Please note that the usual collection point remains the same: West-wing doors of the Sacred Heart Monastery Kensington each Saturday morning between 10am-midday. Please do NOT bring donations outside these hours as our able team of volunteers will not be present to receive the items. 

For bulky items/large collections, please contact Friends of Kensington Monastery by email

Special thanks to the students and staff of St. Brigids Primary School Coogee for organising a Vanuatu awareness campaign and two fundraising events during Lent. 

Your generosity and support thus far has touched the lives of so many of our brothers and sisters in the Pacific region - let us continue our efforts in making a difference. 

Blessings in abundance,

Friends of Kensington Monastery





Br Ted writes from the Northern Territory

posted Mar 16, 2015, 4:49 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia   [ updated Mar 16, 2015, 5:03 PM ]

Br Ted Merritt has just sent acquittals for assistance provided to needy people at the Nightcliff centre in the Northern Territory.

He writes: "Enclosed are acquittals for the period 7.11.14 to date. Thanks for your continued support."

Assistance provided for which details and receipts have been sent include:
* A woman with three small children who had power disconnected because of arrears. Now on a pre-paid meter and arrears sorted out
* A man requiring food for 5 days until the next invalid pension day.
* Repairs for a student bicycle to get to University
* A woman requiring food for her and her child following an unexpected reduction in her social security income when two children left. Will be able to manage in the future.
* A second hand refrigerator purchased for a married couple with child.
* Clothes for a lady who has been in hospital for 2 months and needed warm clothing.
* Door lock for a mans car that was damaged and not covered by insurance.
* Support for Grandparent looking after two autistic grandsons aged 22 and 13. The father of the boys is in Gaol until August and the lady requires ongoing assistance until then.

PNG - Nimowa, Milne Bay, Cyclone Ita Damage

posted May 11, 2014, 8:08 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia

We will be sending funds to assist recovery in Papua New Guinea at Nimowa, Milne Bay.

A new article at the time can be found here

Fr Tony Young writes:

I am in Moresby and catching up with mail.

Our VSat at Nimowa was trashed by cyclone Ita. 

Thank you for the copy of the newsletter and the offer of assistance. You will be aware by now that John Mulrooney, when he was visiting us recently, suggested that you could help with restoring our main power at Nimowa By funding a new genset.  I want to thank you for agreeing. 

At present only the hospital and  Academy are receiving power from a small portable genset. 

I will send you photos and an accounting after we take delivery and get it to Nimowa. 

Pray for us. Regards.


Rehabilitation Program in Pilar, Camotes

posted Mar 17, 2014, 2:33 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia

The housing materials for the victims of typhoon in Pilar, Camotes, Cebu was delivered by the Philippine Navy last February 16, 2014. It took 2 days to unload all the materials from the navy ship because of its huge number. More than 50 people from the affected families helped hand in hand in order to unload the housing supplies from the ship. The materials were brought to the parish where the re-packing took place. Another 2 days were spent just to re-pack the 3,950 kgs. of nails and segregate the 4,752 pcs. of galvanized iron sheets. The distribution of materials was done on February 20, 2014. The affected families gathered in the parish hall to get the housing materials for the reconstruction of their houses. Before the distribution was done, a short orientation about rehabilitation program was given to the affected families. More than 1,000 families benefited the housing materials. The people are so grateful for the help that the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (MSC) extended to them.

In behalf of the MSC Philippine Province, we thank all the donors who share their resources to the families affected by the typhoon. To all MSCs around the world, thank you
for the support you have sent to us. Your help are greatly appreciated. To all our generous friends who also share their blessings to the needy, thank so much for your generosity and kindness.
We also thank all the people who help us bring all the housing materials in Pilar, Camotes. To the Naval Forces Central (NAFORCEN) and the Navy Ship BRP Tausog (AT295), for giving your time, effort and resources in bringing our materials to its destination. To all the parishioners of Pilar who helped and worked together to unload the materials and bring them to the parish. And to all individuals who become part of the relief operation, thank you so much and God bless you all!

Tonga - Cyclone Ian

posted Jan 20, 2014, 7:04 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia

"Thank you for your kind consideration to offer help to those who suffer in Ha'apai groups due to damages caused by Cyclone Ian on the 11th January 2014.

Your help will be very much appreciated that. One of my aunties, a widow live there with her children and grandchildren. I managed to talk to them by phone yesterday and it is so obvious that the damages done by the cyclone is felt by everyone in those islands. Their house was partly damaged by the cyclone and more than 70% of the family houses and public building in the islands were destroyed. Water system, food and shelter is their main needy now with lots of tents up to one thousand need to be distributed and installed to families to use for the time being.

I volunteer to go down if the donors are willing to help and to make sure that the donation is wisely distributed to those who are most in need of our help at this time.

Once again thank you and God bless.

Lopeti Manu msc"

Can You Help?

Philippines Storm

posted Nov 11, 2013, 2:29 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia   [ updated Nov 14, 2013, 3:41 PM ]

Greetings of Hope!
The MSC Philippine Province is in grief about what happen to our fellow Filipinos who are affected by the recent typhoon who struck some parts of Visayas Region. We are planning to give some aids and assistance to the victims of this calamity. As you heard from the news, many lives were taken because of the natural disaster and families are mourning because of their losts. Moreover,  many families now particularly in Tacloban City are starving and hungry to death. And they desperately need help and assistance in order for them to live, or better to survive.

In this regard, the Mission Office Philippines together with the Board Members would like to appeal for assistance from your good office. We are contacting the bishop of the Diocese of Palo, Bp. John Du, and try to keep in touch with him. The MSC Manila District is planning (as of this moment in their meeting) about how can we extend our help to the people in need of our assistance. We are very much grateful for the help you will extend to our brothers and sisters here in the Philippines. Thank you so much and please continue pray for our country. God bless you all!

In Christ,
MSC Mission Office Philippines



We are looking to give $50,000 initially and then whatever additional comes in. Can you help? Please mark your donation for "Philippines Relief" - Donate



****UPDATE 15/11/13 ***


"We have already collected over S63,000.00 for relief work and his money will be sent to our MSC Mission Office ¡n Manila.


We have insisted that the money will be distributed by our MSC Brethren, and not simply handed out to another organisation.


Our Indonesian confreres after the Tsunami in 2004 and an earthquake in 2010 themselves went and spent 2 weeks living with the people and helped construct toilets and supply water works. And within weeks I went to both projects and spent a few days with the people. I am asking if some members of our Province in the Philippines could follow their example.


Perhaps you, gentle reader, have some benefactors who may wish to assist.

Adrian F. Meaney MSC"



ACFID Press Release

Kiribati – First Container

posted Sep 16, 2013, 4:47 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia

I am not sure if I can put into words our appreciation for the books in the first container.

When I first saw the books, I never  dreamt, I could distribute so many new, up to date syllabus books, primary, secondary, educational and novel books.

I can tell you it was a joy to distribute them to the Teaching Training College (to the outer islands), preschools, primary, secondary schools and the USB. The books were of the highest standard and packed to perfection, and arrived in similar fashion.
The value of your contribution to the education in Kiribati cannot be measured for which we thank the MSC team in Sydney.
While I make special mention regarding the books, I cannot omit our heartfelt thanks for the many other wonderful items sent. Quotation from Fr Baretoka Tab North Parish, “We could never afford the many wonderful gifts given to my parish from the first container."
Please extend my sincere thanks to your many donors who contributed so generously”.
The second and third containers have arrived.


With our sincere blessings



Container to Nauru ... and another to Kiribati

posted Jul 11, 2013, 4:43 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia   [ updated Aug 1, 2013, 6:03 PM ]

2013 Container #4
*** UPDATE 02 AUGUST 2013 ***

Dear Friends,


August greetings! We hope you're well and enjoying the lovely weather. 


Some good news to begin with: the fourth container, filled with an assortment of items including desks and chairs to fill four classrooms, was picked up on Monday and is now on its way to Kiribati. 


So our container appeal has come to a temporary close. This little project began around Ash Wednesday and in a short space of time we have managed to send four containers to our brothers and sisters in the Pacific. A wonderful effort by the Mission Office, all the donors including the schools and surrounding Parishes AND the commitment and effort of the fabulous members of FKM. Congratulations to all! 


Enjoy the rest of your week and look forward to seeing you all on Saturday.




***UPDATE 16 JULY 2013***

Dear Friends


A great big 'thank you' to those who attended on Saturday to complete the job from last week. The container was filled comfortably and loaded onto a truck - on it's way to a new school providing education and hope for the children of Nauru. 


We have also received our next container, and as you can see from the attached photo it is two-thirds filled already thanks to OLSH Primary School. All we need to do next week is to better stack the contents to make more space. We should be able to fill it quite comfortably but we do need more donations to make this happen - please continue to spread the word. 


So we are now up to container #4 (3 to Kiribati, 1 to Nauru) - a phenomenal effort by a small group of committed people from our surrounding parishes. But let us be mindful that we are very much part of a larger 'collective'. This project would not be possible without the donations from the various schools and multitude of parishioners, and the funds provided by the Mission Office to ship the container. A wonderful team effort. 


Thank you for your continued support and look forward to seeing you next Saturday. 


Blessings in abundance,






Following the two containers that have been send to Kiribati with many excellent donated items, a container is now being prepared for shipping to Nauru. In particular, this shipment will have much needed new furniture and equipment to upgrade the facilities in the school, where we have already committed a separate project for new building and upgrade works.
Below is a letter from the Friends of Kensington Monastery volunteers who have been doing a marvellous job packing and cataloging the containers.
Dear Friends,


Thank you for the great turn out last week. 

We managed to almost fill an entire container in a day - a phenomenal effort! 

The container is filled with items to set up a school - not only for the students but for the teachers as well. We even included executive desks for the bosses! 

No doubting the exceptional team work and commitment of FKM. 


The latest is that the freight forwarder will come and collect the Nauru container at midday this Saturday - more than enough time for us to fill the remaining space. 

The truck will not only pick up the container but will drop off another at the same time. A removalist has been organised to bring desks and chairs donated by OLSH Primary School (thank you Natius & Bernadette) later in the afternoon (approx. 3pm). They will unload the desks and chairs straight into the container so all we have to do the following week is stack them up nicely. Easy! 


So if you have time, please come along at the usual time of 10am. 




Some of the items required and sent


- white boards

- library books (targeting children and teenagers, not so much novels)

- pencils, coloured pencils, pens, textas, note pads, (any general stationary)

- Computers (working condition - laptops welcome)

- printers

- Games (board games, teaching aides, education material)

- Chairs and stools

- religious/theological books

- religious icons

- sporting equipment (balls, boots etc - popular sports: soccer and volley ball)

- school & sport uniforms (new)



- toys

- clothing (new)

- nappies (new)



- fabric (new)

- clocks/watches

- spectacles

- sunglasses

- clothing (new)

- musical instruments (any)



- chairs (ideally plastic and stackable)

- folding tables

- bicycles

- motor bikes (yes, we are serious!)

- lawn mowers

- beds/mattresses (preferably new, especially for mattress; inflatable mattresses)

- sewing machines

- fishing nets

- basins

- tea pots (large)

- mosquito nets

- towels and sheets (new)

- urns/thermos flasks

- tarpaulins

- wheel barrows/hand carts

- fencing wire

- rubbish bins

- cabinets; filing, storage

- cutlery (any)

- crockery (any)

- beds for priests (preferably new)

- carpentry tools

- paper binding machine

- paper guillotine

- microwave ovens (clean and in working order)


Medical equipment

- wheel chairs

- walking frames

- crutches

- commode chairs


Solidarity in Nauru

posted Feb 5, 2013, 4:27 PM by MSC Mission Office Australia   [ updated Feb 14, 2013, 1:10 PM ]

Missionary of the Sacred Heart Father Adrian Meaney, Director of the MSC Mission Office Australia, shares his bittersweet experience of spending the holidays in Nauru and struggles to understand refugee detention in Nauru.


Fr Meaney and Fr Tatieri
I celebrated the holidays on the island of Nauru.


Nauru is a tiny coral island about 40 kilometres south of the equator in the Central Pacific, 20 kilometres in circumference and about 300 metres above sea level. Palm-fringed, coral-girt and one of the loveliest of the Pacific Islands, Nauru was formerly the site of one of the world’s most valuable phosphate deposits. Even though I was there once before, I still marvel at the size of the Republic where one can drive around in less than half an hour.


Nauru is in the news mainly because our political leaders consider it a good place for the detention of asylum seekers.  In fact the inhabitants of this small sovereign state (only a bit larger than the Vatican State) are a relaxed people who love music, feasts and their independence. Moreover they have compassion for those in the ‘Camp’ – the refugees who have landed on their shores. 


I spent my time with Fr. Tatieru msc, Parish Priest and citizen of the nearby Republic of Kiribati. He is the latest in a long line of Missionaries of the Sacred Heart dating back to 1881. The refugees have asked only for Catholic Bibles in their local language, which are currently being organised. In the Parish we also have an MSC Refugee Group assisting Father Tatieru in his ministry.


I first met the refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru at the Vigil Mass for Christmas 2012.  The Parish Church was full to overflowing but places were reserved for approximately 60 visitors. There were about 1,200 inside and outside the Church, and while it was hot and humid, the devotion of the people was very evident and the singing loud and harmonious.


In fact when two large buses arrived from the Camp there were well over 60 guests. Father Tatieru was hearing confession so I welcomed our visitors with their welfare officers from the Salvation Army and security staff. The meeting was joyful and relaxed, and I noticed that the majority were from Sri Lanka, with some refugees from Iran and Iraq.


After communion, the leader of the Sri Lankans sang a hymn in Tamil. As soon as they finished there was deep silence followed by rapturous applause. There was a profound sense of solidarity and friendship.


On Christmas day I was met at the Presbytery by a Salvation Army Officer who collected me and the religious items I had brought from Australia (books, medals, rosaries, pictures, liturgical calendars, etc.) and brought me to the Camp. After going through security, I was taken to the dining room where I found myself in front of a large nativity crib. It was made out of material scrounged from around the camp. It was wonderful to behold, with a lake at the bottom of a hill on the top of which was an improvised crib. The scene reminded me of the hills I saw around Kandy in Sri Lanka.


I was deeply touched by the sincere joy I found among the staff and refugees. During the Mass I reminded everyone that many people found themselves in places akin to prison, even Jesus and John the Baptist, and that the search for God must be foremost in their lives. And I reminded them that the very tents they were living in are the same used by Australian soldiers.


But having said that during Mass, I had a most profound sense of my inability to understand how or why we have such a place as this Camp in Nauru. In the silence after communion I was almost reduced to tears. But the congregation appeared joyful, and after Mass I was invited to go with them to three other cribs constructed in three tents and to bless the combined efforts of these faithful people. I noticed there was only one attempt to make an infant Jesus, and when I asked how they made the image, they said it was carved out of a piece of white soap.


The rest of the holidays were very hot but joyful and on the feast of the Holy Innocents, hundreds of children came, dressed in white and sang like angels.



A postscript: short history of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart in Nauru


On April 16th 1881, Nauru was included in the Micronesian sector of the Missions of Melanesia and Micronesia entrusted by the Holy See to Father Jules Chevalier, on behalf of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart and since that time the MSCs from Germany, France and Australia, Indonesia and Kiribati have worked there.


Nauru was annexed by Germany in 1888, so the first Missionaries sent were Germans. Father Friedrich Grundl msc, took up residence in the area called Ana, on land called Arubo, on Nauru Island.  He administered his first baptism to a Nauruan baby girl in danger of death on 14th December 1902.


A much respected Missionary was Father Alois Kayser msc, who arrived there in 1904, and became the Apostle of Nauru. Soon after arriving, he gained the support of the people at Yaren and settled at a rudimentary second Catholic mission station in the south-east of the island, which he called Menen in the church records. With the help of a lay brother he built a mission station, comprising a church, a priest’s house, a Sisters’ convent, a school and a small hospital for women.


 Father Kayser was hard working, strict and a clear thinker. He soon mastered the Nauruan language with the help of a local woman from Buada village.  This enabled him to gain first-hand knowledge of the culture. Eventually he was considered the expert on local languages.  But his interests went broader and in 1928 he published “Processing Oil on Nauru”, “The Pandanus on Nauru” (1934) and “Fishing on Nauru” (1936). But his most important work was to complete a Grammar of Nauruan language in 1936.


Though far from the bustling cities of the world, the people of Nauru have known the results of conflicts all too well. On the morning of 27 December 1939, German shells were fired from the sea on the phosphate works. Bursting shells and exploding oil tanks caused pandemonium. After that, things were quiet again for two years, until a new element of danger threatened. The Japanese had entered the war and before long their armies were moving south.


In July 1941, a cable arrived from the Australian Federal Government in Canberra ordering all expatriate women (except the Sisters) and children to be evacuated. The government had considered the Sisters’ desire to remain with their people.  They could do so, but at their own risk. Soon after, they too had to depart for Australia.


Finally, the only ones to remain at the Mission were Fathers A Kayser msc, and P Clivaz msc. The Japanese troops landed on Nauru on 25 August 1942. They deported 1200 Nauruans with Fr Kayser to Chuuk Island. Fr Kaiser was tortured by the Japanese, and was buried in Chuuk on 21st October 1944.


In Nauru there is a Japanese gun emplacement at the bottom of the Priests’ house, and in the house there is a stone recovered from the grave of Fr Kayser. He arrived on Nauru in 1904 and served his people for almost 40 years.  He was a zealous pastor and builder, and left a rich record of Nauran ethnography.


After the war the 737 Nauruans who survived the Japanese captivity in Chuuk returned to Nauru. In 1947, a trusteeship was established by the United Nations, with Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom as trustees.


On January 31, 1968, Nauru achieved the status of a Republic.


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