From 2001 with the arrival of Fr Tadeusz Seremet from Poland, the Salvatorians have been responsible for the pastoral care of the Pymble Catholic Parish. The Salvatorians are more correctly known as the Society of the Divine Saviour.
Societas Divini Salvatoris or SDS
The Salvatorian Family consists of the members of the Society of the Divine Saviour (Societas Divini Salvatoris), members of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Divine Saviour (Sorores Divini Salvatoris) and Lay Salvatorians. The Salvatorians have an international character and work within the confines of the Roman Catholic Church.
Salvatorians in Australia
The history of the Salvatorians in Australia began in 1961. A few years earlier the Archbishop of Perth, Redmond Prendiville, sent a letter of invitation to the head of the Society in Rome, Fr Bonaventura Schweizer. Replying to the invitation Fr Schweizer sent the first Salvatorian, Fr Paul Keyte to Australia in 1961. Fr Paul was asked to take pastoral care of the new parish of Bellevue WA. In the following years additional Salvatorians from the British Province of Salvatorians joined Fr Paul.
In 1987, the Polish Province of Salvatorians assumed responsibility from the British Province. As a result, three volunteers from the Polish Province arrived in Perth in 1988. Since then, almost every year, new Salvatorians have arrived from Poland. At present there are over twenty Polish Salvatorians sharing their lives and ministry in Australia.
In Australia, the Salvatorians work in parishes in WA at Balcatta, Bruce Rock, Carnarvon, Clarkson, Esperance, Greenmount, Nollamara, and Ocean Reef, in NSW at Carlton, Gosford, Pittwater, and Pymble, and in Victoria at Alphington.
Salvatorian Founder Fr Francis Jordan
Founder of the Society of the Divine Saviour and Sisters of the Divine Saviour.
John Baptist Jordan was born on 16 June 1848 into a poor family in the village of Gurtweil, in southwest Germany. He was the second child of Lawrence and Notburga Jordan, who took him to be baptised the day after his birth with the name of John Baptist. At his first communion a strange incident occurred. It seemed to him that a dove fluttered over his head, but since no-one else saw it, he kept the vision to himself. But from that time he committed himself to God and felt that he had a vocation to the priesthood. He was a talented and lively boy and well liked in the village.
Jordan was able to begin his journey to the priesthood by taking lessons in Latin from a friendly priest. He then went to the Gymnasium in Constance for two years to complete his basic education. From there he went to the Diocesan Seminary of St Peter in Friburg Germany, where he was ordained in 1878 at the age of thirty.
Due to the Kulturkampf (the opposition of the Prussian State to the Catholic Church) he was unable to exercise his ministry in his home Diocese and his Bishop sent him to Rome to study oriental languages and in 1880, he was given the opportunity by the Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith to travel on their behalf to the Middle East.
On his return from the Middle East he began to search for collaborators. By this time he had moved to the house of Santa Brigitta in Piazza Farnese Rome where he established a printing press and started printing the monthly magazine Der Missionär.
On the 8 December 1881 in the Chapel of St Brigida in Rome, Father Jordan and two other priests took private vows as members of the Apostolic Teaching Society. It is this date which is kept as the foundation day of the Salvatorians.
Salvatorians see in Father Francis Jordan a man of great faith and depth of character. Early in his life he committed himself to the Lord, and to the realisation of the special task he knew he had been given. His vision, determination and faith attracted many people to follow him and join him in trying to win the world for the Saviour. His ideas have not lost their relevance with the passing of time. If anything, his idea of working closely with groups of apostolically minded laity is more relevant than ever.
In 1942, the process of canonisation for Fr Jordan was initiated. On 14 January 2011, Pope Benedict XVI authorised the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to publish a decree on the heroicity of his virtues, granting him the title of Venerable. On 19 June 2020, Pope Francis approved Fr Jordan's beatification and decreed the validity of a miracle gained through the intercession of Fr Jordan. A young couple expecting a baby in 2014 in Jundiai Brazil, was informed by doctors and specialists that their unborn child was suffering an incurable bone disease. The parents, members of a group of Lay Salvatorians, prayed for Jordan's intercession for the health of their child. The parents asked the Salvatorian community to join them in their prayer. The child was born in a healthy condition on 8 September 2014, the Feast of the Birth of the Blessed Mother, and the anniversary of the death of Fr Jordan. Fr Jordan was beatified at a beatification ceremony on 15 May 2021, at the Archbasilica of St John Lateran in Rome.
Background information video on Father Francis Jordan
Call to Proclaim
The kindness and love of God for humanity have appeared in Jesus Christ. In Him, the one true Saviour of the world, all people are called to union with God and one another to form the People of God.
Inspired by the Holy Spirit and out of concern for the salvation of all, Father Francis Mary of the Cross Jordan founded the Society of the Divine Saviour and gave it the apostolic purpose to announce to all people that Jesus is the Saviour.
Moved by the words of the Gospel: "Eternal life is this: to know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent," Salvatorian's Founder gave them the mission to not rest content until all people know, love, and serve Jesus as their Saviour.
And he said to them, "Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News to all creation"
Salvatorians in Australia
Brief history of the Salvatorians in Poland and Australia (PDF 388.2KB)
General headquarters of the Society
The headquarters, or Motherhouse, of the Society is in Rome, steps away from St Peter’s Square. It serves as the home of the Superior General and council and houses the Founder’s Chapel as well as the archives of the Society.
The house at Via della Conciliazione 51 dates back to Fr Jordan. The Society started in 1881 at Piazza Farnese 96, the house where St Bridget of Sweden lived in the 14th century. Within a year, Fr Jordan needed more room and on 1 November 1882, he began renting rooms near St Peter’s Basilica in the Palazzo Cesi, which then had the address of Borgo Vecchio 165. In 1894, the owner of the palace, Duca Francesco di Paola Negroni Caffarelli, who had reserved the first floor for his own use, the so called “piano nobile” (or noble floor), decided to sell the building and Fr Jordan took the opportunity to buy it. The Society occupied the complete building late in 1894, but the sale agreement was signed on 20 July 1895.
In the 1930s, the Italian government created a major boulevard, the Via della Conciliazione, leading from the Tiber River to St Peter’s Square. The Motherhouse, which had been facing a narrow street little larger than an alley, suddenly found itself with a new address fronting one of the most important streets in Rome.
The headquarters for the Salvatorians since 1882 are in the shadow of St Peter's Basilica in Rome at:
Society of the Divine Saviour
Via della Conciliazione 51
I-00193 Rome Italy
Telephone +39 0668 6291
Salvatorians in St Peter's Square, Vatican City