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Copyright LE COURRIER AUSTRALIEN 2016
HomeNewsAustraliaOver 200 visitors participated in the 2019 Pere Receveur Mass at La Perouse

Over 200 visitors participated in the 2019 Pere Receveur Mass at La Perouse

The Mass commemorates the death and burial of Father Receveur on 17 February 1788 and recognises the historical significance of the first Christian Catholic Mass and Burial service on the Australian continent.

Since 1988, La Perouse has celebrated this traditional Latin Mass remembering the French priests of the Laperouse Expedition who it is thought introduced the mass to Australia.

Mass in the traditional Latin rite of the Catholic Church that was used at Botany by the two priests of the Laperouse Expedition at Botany in early 1788.

The only Mass rite known to St. Francis of Assisi  (ca.1181-1265) and to the two French priests of the Laperouse Expedition and to all the Catholic clergy of the Roman Rite in 1788. The first two Masses were celebrated either on the day of the expedition’s arrival, Saturday 26th January, 1788 ,the feast of St. Polycarp or  the next day which was Sexagesima. .Under the 1765 royal Ordonnance de la Marine,  which specified the duties of all types of French naval personnel,,chaplains in the royal navy were obliged to say Mass on Sundays and feast days without exception unless bad weather prevented it and on other days as often as possible. Here was the mandate for the introduction of the Mass to Australia in early 1788 which continued what had occurred throughout the Laperouse voyage aboard the two French frigates.

The two priests did not  concelebrate as concelebration of Mass by two or more priests did not exist in the 18th century on land or at sea.

The Mass was introduced to Australia by two French scientific savants,  a Conventual friar, whose death occasioned a Requiem Mass by his brother priest ,a canon of Ste. Genevieve in Paris and the Latin Office of the Dead which was mandatory at the funerals of naval personnel.

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