Getting to Know Father Phillip

Principal Jennifer Oaten with Father Phillip Fleay

We are delighted to introduce Father Phillip Fleay, who joins our College community this year.

Father Phillip, the youngest of four siblings, was born in Busselton and has lived in various regions of Western Australia, including the Wheatbelt, Pilbara, and Perth. He received his education from the Sisters of Mercy and the Christian Brothers at CBC Terrace, which is now known as Trinity College.

It was Monsignor Lenihan who inspired Father Phillip to join the priesthood. He considered the idea on and off for over two decades before finally joining the seminary. Prior to becoming a priest, he worked in the field of telephony and electronic engineering for what is now Telstra. He later worked in the travel industry with his brother and then at Thai International Airlines.

Father Phillip joined the seminary at the age of 42 and was ordained at the age of 50. He has served in various locations, including Ashfield in Sydney, Southport in Queensland, Cloverdale, Mundaring, Applecross, and St Charles Seminary in Perth.

Father Phillip at Opening Mass

Father Phillip believes that Catholic education should provide a moral compass for people to make important social and faith choices in their lives. He believes one of the greatest challenges facing the Catholic Church, is its inability to embrace diversity and accept that unity does not require conformity.

At Santa Maria, Father Phillip is looking forward to being part of a community that is open to new ideas and challenges and moving beyond the status quo. He believes faith is a challenge, and people may move from belief to doubt at times. However, holding onto the ideals that Jesus presents can lead to stronger belief. When dealing with people of other faith perspectives, he believes in starting with respecting their dignity, listening to their story, and acknowledging their point of view, which can enrich both parties through dialogue.

You can join Father Phillip for Mass each Friday in the Chapel at 8.00 am.

Please join us in welcoming Father Phillip to our community.

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