The parish of St John the Baptist, Perth, continues to be enriched its international communities. In the early years, Scottish Highlanders and the Irish communities arrived in Perth in search of a better way of life. The Italians and a first generation of Polish families joined the parish during the 20th century. Their contribution over the past 175 and more years is seen in the lifeblood and the fabric of the parish.
In recent years families from Poland, India, the Philippines have been at the forefront of a new wave of migration which has brought new life to St John’s. While still proud of their own traditions, Polish and Syro Malabar Masses are celebrated, the families are increasingly being integrated in the parish and schools.
A popular event in the parish’s calendar is the International Evening, organised by Deacon Len Moir. He said, “There is a lot to celebrate, taking in the best of all cultures in song, dance and delicacies.”
Among the entertainers were the Perth Polish Scouts and Guides; the Polish Children’s Choir (which also led the praise at the International Mass beforehand); Highland Dancers from Kilgraston School providing a special Scottish flavour to the evening and the Filipino and Indian communities whose acts proved that you are never too young to be a star!
Mgr Martin Drysdale and Fr Bogdan Palka concelebrated an International Mass at the start of the evening, with words of welcome and thanks to all who contributed to the party – but also to enriching the life of the parish community throughout the year.
The preacher was Deacon Len.