Born in 1938 in Kunonoppin, a small town in Western Australia, Irene grew up on a wheat and sheep farm near New Norcia. In 1956 she joined the Sisters of Saint Joseph and spent many years teaching in country schools in WA including working as Principal of Manjimup Catholic College from 1981 to 1985. Sr Irene felt a strong calling to missionary work and was sent to work in Peru, South America. On May 23 1991, while caring for the local people, Sister Irene and some villagers were captured and killed by soldiers of the Shining Path.
John XXIII (Blue)
Pope John XXIII was born Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli in Italy in 1881 and at the age of eleven, entered the seminary to become a priest. Ordained in 1904 he had a number of important roles in the Catholic Church for the next fifty years. In 1953, at age 72, he was created a Cardinal and sent to Venice and five years later was elected Pope upon the death of Pius XII and took the name John XXIII. During his time as Pope he is best known for calling the Second Vatican Council to revitalise the Church. Pope John XXIII died 3 June, 1963 and was canonised on 27 April 2014.
De Vialar (Green)
In 1797, Emilie was born into a wealthy French family and during her early life, felt a strong calling to look after the poor in her home town and encouraged her friends to assist her. Upon the death of her father, Emily inherited a large amount of money which she used to purchase a house and there she began her own order of nuns, the Sisters of St Joseph of the Apparition, who dedicated themselves to work with the poor. Today the Sisters of St Joseph of the Apparition are working to help the poor in many countries around the world.
Rosendo Salvado was a Spanish Benedictine monk who started his monastic life in St Martin in Compostela, Italy. Under the leadership of the newly consecrated Bishop of Perth, Dr John Brady, Dom Salvado led a group of five monks out to the Victoria Plains and founded New Norcia on 1 March 1846. Salvado’s original vision was to create, among the indigenous peoples of the Victoria Plains, a Christian, largely self-sufficient village based on agriculture. His aim was to ‘civilise’ and evangelise according to the European ideals of the time, but he did so with sympathy for indigenous culture that was rare in his day.