Sister Clare Condon SGS, as President of Catholic Religious Australia, commented in a statement on the announcement that the canonisation of Mary MacKillop is coming towards its completion at the Vatican. "Mary MacKillop stands as an heroic model for Religious life in this country and beyond," Sr Clare said on the announcement that Pope Benedict XVI has accepted the second miracle.
"Blessed Mary, soon to be St Mary, represents all the good work that Religious sisters, brothers and priests have done for the Catholic Church and for Australian society over the past century and a half.
"Mary MacKillop was a woman of outstanding faith who sought to respond to the critical needs of society in her time, whatever the personal difficulty and challenges she faced.
"In her pioneering work for education and social welfare, she initiated a gospel response that has seen thousands of young Australians educated and cared for with understanding and compassion. And her legacy continues strongly today.
"In our challenging times, the Religious can follow her example and put their trust unfailingly in God." MacKillop, along with popes John Paul II and Pius XII, will be canonized in 2010.
Sister Clare, as President of Catholic Religious Australia, represents about 8000 Religious in about 170 congregations -- of sisters, brothers and priests, contemplative and apostolic -- in Australia. The Sisters of St Joseph, founded by Mary MacKillop, are part of this network.