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Journeying with people in hope, love and support...

The John Wallis Foundation continues the work of the Missionary Sisters of Service supporting people and communities experiencing hardship and disadvantage. 

We are inspired by a world which demonstrates compassion, justice and love in equal measure to all.

The Foundation runs an annual Small Grants Program, a series of inspiring speakers events, and other activities to strengthen community relationships. 

The Foundation is named in honour of Father John Wallis, founder of the Missionary Sisters of Service.

John Wallis Bushwalk

March 2013

Some of the 50 people who set out in two groups for the John Wallis Bushwalk.  The walks began and ended at The Springs on a misty Mount Wellington, led by Tom Burke and Stuart Witney. Photo: Penny Edman

Some of the 50 people who set out in two groups for the John Wallis Bushwalk.  The walks began and ended at The Springs on a misty Mount Wellington, led by Tom Burke and Stuart Witney. Photo: Penny Edman

Mount Wellington, or, to give it its ancient name, Kunanyi, was host to the first John Wallis Bushwalk, a community and fundraising event organised by the John Wallis Foundation.   Some 50 people divided into two groups, one led by Stuart Witney for an easy ramble, the other, led by Tom Burke, set out on  something a little more challenging.   Tom and Stuart know the mountain well.  Each pointed out his group many points of interest of the life of the mountain, and told stories of events and colourful characters who lived on the Mountain over the years.  

Tom Burke telling one of his many stories of life on the mountain.  Photo: Penny Edman

Tom Burke telling one of his many stories of life on the mountain.  Photo: Penny Edman

The walks began and finished at The Springs.  The Hobart John Wallis Foundation Regional Group, organised the event and provided a barbecue lunch for the returning  walkers.   Bernadette Wallis mss, observing the happy faces of participants on their return from the walks, was reminded of the stories of the Transfiguration as told in the Gospels.  She offers the following reflection:  

Kunanyi, not  MtTabor; no “Peter, James and John” nor “Jesus”, but there was something of their spirit.  Two leaders, Tom Burke and Stuart Witney, each led a group of people up the mountain. Just as Jesus had done so often with his disciples, Tom and Stuart told stories of life on this great mountain, about its history and geology. The people listened and were entranced by what they heard.  Cloud came down as mist and moved among them.  They were captured by the experience of the bush as they followed the trail.

Denis and Angela Derrick provided the barbecue lunch at the end of the walk.   Photo: Mary-Anne Johnson

Denis and Angela Derrick provided the barbecue lunch at the end of the walk.   Photo: Mary-Anne Johnson

The “disciples” on Kunanyi/Mt Wellington returned to base.  A barbecue awaited them.  As they approached the table for welcome nourishment, I was struck by their beaming faces.  A joy and serenity pervaded the groups.  It reminded me of the transfiguration story in the gospels, and the transformation of the disciples who shared that experience.   Our walkers may not have named the Something deeper that touched them on the mountain.  Yet I sensed in them something of the Presence they had encountered there, something intangible yet strong,  gentle yet penetrating: a touch of God in the sacred ordinary....?

 

 

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