In memory of Gloria Lazzarini

September 30, 2015

Gloria Lazzarini (Grail Brisbane) - 23rd January 1937 – 1st August, 2015.

Gloria Lazzarini's farewell Eucharist took place in the parish church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Coorparoo, Brisbane. There appeared to be people there  from every period and part of her life. There were the members of her family who had shared her childhood and schooldays on the sugar farm at Finch Hatton in a picturesque valley west of Mackay, Queensland. Her sister Claire prepared the liturgy with loving attention to Gloria’s wishes and her younger brother James gave the eulogy, drawing on all his cherished memories of her.

There were former residents of ‘Ballybrac’, the Grail Centre in Mackay where young women like Gloria found a home when they came to town for work or training. At ‘Ballybrac’ they also were offered a vision and formation for their adult Christian lives and Gloria typically responded with strong faith and idealism. She went south to ‘Tay Creggan’ in Melbourne and then to Springwood in the Blue Mountains for further formation before making her dedication in the Grail. There were former residents and staff members of ‘Tay Creggan’ and Grail Nucleus members in the gathering, all of us having lived and worked with Gloria over the years.

From her days in Townsville, first as Deputy Principal and later as Principal of St Raphael’s residential college for women on the campus of James Cook University, came former students and colleagues who had become life-long friends. Jo Flynn was there from Melbourne. She and Gloria had spent several years together in Tasmania and Melbourne working in their respective professions, Jo as a medical doctor and Gloria as a social worker, and had maintained a close friendship to the end. When Gloria decided to leave the Nucleus, she did not leave the Grail. For the last twenty years or so, she lived and worked in Brisbane and was a member of the Brisbane Grail group.

Read the full article by Alison Healey (Grail Sydney) in the Grail Australia Newsletter (Sept 2015)