Address:6 Fryer Street, North Ward
Telephone:(07) 4721 3765
Facsimile:(07) 4721 5359
Priest Fr Siby Sebastian MCBS - Administrator:

Mass Times

Saturday:6.30am & 6.00pm - Reconciliation 10.30am - 11am

Mary Help of Christians Parish - The Strand is committed to supporting the Safeguarding strategies of the Townsville Diocese. To view the current Risk Management Strategy and Safeguarding Policy please visit

Youth Mass

Once a month which is advertised in the Parish Bulletin.

Eucharistic Adoration

7am - Midday

Reconciliation Times

 Saturday:  10.30am-11am    

Any other time by appointment.

To book a Baptism:

Baptisms are held on Sundays at 12noon in the Church by appointment.  Prior to Baptism parents are requested to attend a Baptism Preparation Evening held on the 1st Monday of each month at 7:30pm in the Parish Office meeting room.

BaptismTeam:  Glenda Heferan, Sandra Dickensen 

Please ring the Parish Office to book the date of your child/children's Baptism. Booking is essential.

Adult Baptism

If you are an adult who has not been baptized, but are thinking about becoming a Catholic, then the first step is to contact our parish office or the priest or one of the parishioners of our parish. Our parish has a program - the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (R.C.I.A.) which prepares people for baptism.

To book a wedding

Contact the parish office....9am - 12noon weekdays

New to Parish?

A warm welcome to new parishioners in our parish. We have a special "New Parishioners pack" which contain information about the parish, a parish directory, a registration form, planned giving details.

The "New Parishioners" pack is available at the entrance of the church. Alternatively, you can contact the parish office on 47213 765 to have a pack post to you.

Parish History


The Latin word sacramentum means "a sign of the sacred." The seven sacraments are ceremonies that point to what is sacred, significant and important for Christians. They are special occasions for experiencing God's saving presence.


"Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you" (Mt 28:19-20)

Baptism is the first sacrament. It incorporates us into the Church community.

Baptism is performed by pouring of water and the words ‘I baptise you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit'.

Parents who ask to have their children baptised accept the responsibility of training them in the practice of the faith and bringing them up to keep God's commandments.

Child Baptism

Children's initiation begins with the Rite of Baptism for Children. This is often undertaken when the child is an infant, but it can be undertaken at a later stage.


In the early Church the godparents were sponsors who taught the new Christian, usually an adult, about the faith. Later on when infant baptism became usual, the godparents often took the role of guardians of the child if anything happened to the parents. Something of these two roles remains today. Choose godparents who are likely to be around and have an interest in your child over the years.

There must be at least one person who is a Catholic and who lives a life worthy of the role that he or she is about to undertake.

For more information contact the Parish Office.

Adult Baptism and RCIA

The process by which adult converts are brought into the Catholic church is called 'Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults', or RCIA.

Whatever it may be that is calling you to explore a journey of faith with Catholics, you bring your own story to the story of the Church. Whatever your background and circumstance you are welcomed and valued.

As such the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is a journey of faith with Catholics who are members of this parish community, and with other men and women who are also exploring whether the Catholic faith is right for them. The journey is one of a conversation with others on the same journey, as you search to deepen your relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

Each person's journey is unique: some may journey for 2-3 or more years before making the decision, others may take only a few months. For some, it is their first experience of Christian initiation, while others have already been baptised and now wish to be received into full communion with the Catholic Church.

Enquiring About Becoming a Catholic?

If you hear God's call and are looking for ways to respond; if you have ever wondered what might be involved in becoming a Christian or being received into full communion with the Catholic Church, please contact the parish office for more information.

Baptism is the sacrament in which we commit ourselves to God. We proclaim our faith in God - Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

The baptism ceremony for adults is similar to baptism of children except that you make the baptismal promises yourself. Instead of godparents, adults have sponsors, whose role is to encourage you and journey with you.


"On the evening of that day, the first day of the week," Jesus showed himself to his apostles. "He breathed on them, and said to them: 'Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained". (Jn 20:19, 22-23).

The sacrament of Reconciliation (also called Confession or Penance) is a beautiful chance to experience the healing love, mercy and forgiveness of God.

Children's First Reconciliation

First Reconciliation is generally celebrated when the child is in year 3 at school. The celebration of the sacrament is the communal Second Rite of Reconciliation, with candidates, their families and friends, as well as other parishioners all participating. 

For more information, contact the Sacrament Coordinator or the parish office.


 "Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit; for it had not yet fallen on any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then they laid their hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit" (Acts 8:14-17).

Children's Confirmation

This sacrament is generally celebrated when the child is in year 4 at school.  

The essential rite of Confirmation is anointing the forehead of the baptized with sacred chrism, together with the laying on of the minister's hand and the words: "Be sealed with the Gift of the Holy Spirit." (CCC  1320)

The gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit:

The seven gifts of the Holy Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord.

The fruits of the Spirit are perfections that the Holy Spirit forms in us as the first fruits of eternal glory. The tradition of the Church lists twelve of them: "charity, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, gentleness, faithfulness, modesty, self-control, chastity."

For more information, contact the Sacrament Coordinator or the parish office.


 "While they were eating, Jesus took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it, he broke it, gave it to his disciples, and said, ‘Take, eat; this is my body".  (Matthew 26:26)

Children's First Eucharist

First Eucharist is celebrated  also in year 4 and takes place on the weekend following the reception of the Sacrament of confirmation.

The institution of the Eucharist.

After Jesus had gathered with his apostles in the Cenacle, He took bread in his hands. He broke it and gave it to them saying, "Take this and eat it, all of you; this is my Body which will be given up for you". Then, he took the cup of wine in his hands and said, "Take this and drink of this, all of you. This is the cup of my Blood, the Blood of the new and everlasting covenant. It will be shed for you and for all so that sins may be forgive. Do this in memory of me".

For more information, contact the Sacrament Coordinator or the parish office.


If you are wish to be married in St. Joseph's Church contact the Parish Office to book your wedding. They will assist you in making all necessary steps required.

Annointing of the Sick

The anointing of the sick is administered to bring spiritual and even physical strength during an illness.


A funeral is a time of sadness and mourning. But for Christians it is also a time to rejoice, for the Lord Jesus has won a great victory over death and made it possible for us to pass through to new and eternal life. This is our unwavering hope.

Parish Executive

Parish Pastoral Council

The Parish Pastoral Council (PPC) meets on the third Thursday of each month from 7:00 - 8.00pm in the parish meeting room. All are welcome to submit items for the agenda.


Our Pastoral Council shares in the responsibility for the ongoing life and development of our parish community, working together with parishioners to provide support for their efforts to live as followers of Christ.

Our Pastoral Council's role is to promote the Church's mission to live and communicate the love and values of Christ in the World around us.

 Our Pastoral Council seeks, amongst other things, to:-

  • Listen and respond to the hopes, ideas, needs and concerns of parishioners
  • Encourage and support the continuing good work of existing groups within our parish 
  • Set short-term and long-term pastoral goals for our parish community within the framework of Diocesan priorities 

The Parish Pastoral Council comprises the following membership: 

Finance Committee

The state of the Parish finances is overseen by the Parish Finance Committee (PFC).  The PFC administers parish finances, in maintaining parish properties, in planning future capital works, in raising the necessary finances for the operation of the various parish services, and in establishing a framework for greater shared responsibility within parish life. 

The finance committee helps to oversee the parish budget and spending.

The Committee is also responsible for ensuring that a suitable annual report concerning parish finances is made available to all parishioners. 

The Parish Finance Committee comprises the following membership: 


Maintenance Committee

This committee oversees the maintenance needs in our parish.

Their members are.....

There are a number of generous people who clean the inside of the church on a roster basis and another roster of people who mow the lawn surrounding the church.

From time to time special working bees are organised to prepare the church and grounds for particular events, for example Christmas and Easter.


Here is some of the work undertaken by members of our parish in order to reach out to others in our society.

St Vincent de Paul

The St Vincent de Paul Society consists of a group of men and women dedicated to service of the poor or those in any need.

We are lucky to have a dedicated St Vincent de Paul Conference in our Parish. This is a group of people who meet weekly to discuss ways they (and the entire parish, with their guidance) can reach out to those most in need in our community.

Chaplaincy to the RSL in Rowes Bay

Chaplain:           Mercia Barrett

Chaplaincy to the Garden Settlement

Chaplains:         Terry and Yvonne Hickey

Parish Outreach Group

Program Coordinator:     Sr. Anita

A group of Parishioners volunteer their time to offer care and support to help those in need. This includes Bereavement Outreach, visiting the sick and house bound.

If you would like your name to be on the list of those available, or if you are in need of assistance, please contact the Program Coordinator Sr Anita at the Convent or the Parish Office.

Other Groups

Teams of Volunteers assist in a diverse number of ways of evangelisation. Specifically:

  • The Sacramental Program team who prepare children for the Sacraments of Reconciliation, Confirmation, and First Eucharist.
  • Catechists who visit the State Primary Schools.
  • Catechists and sponsors for the Christian Rite of Initiation for Adults (RCIA) and for Children (RCIC). 


Monthly Youth Mass

If you sing or play piano, guitar, drums, or any instrument at all, we invite you to get involved All are welcome, regardless of age (yr 6 - adult) and confidence level! It's a great chance to learn some new music, have fun, and help the whole congregation participate more fully in the Mass.

If you would like to get involved in any other way at the Mass eg Eucharistic Ministers, Readers, Offertory Processions, etc, we need you.


The Liturgy Committee

 meets monthly to plan and review special liturgies like Easter, Penecost, Christmas etc within the parish. The Liturgy Coordinator is Meredith Palmer.

Altar Servers

There is a great team of dedicated altar servers who serve in this important ministry. The parish welcomes more boys and girls to serve on the altar during Masses and other special occasions. 

Servers must have made their First Eucharist.

People wishing to join this ministry are provided with appropriate training. 

Altar Carers

Each week there are a number of people who ensure the linen used during Mass is washed and ironed, candles are refilled with oil when necessary and the sanctuary and church are appropriate for worship. 

Ministers of the Word

There are quite a number of dedicated people involved in this ministry. We welcome more people who would undertake formation in proclaiming the Word of God during Mass. Volunteers in this ministry are asked to regularly and routinely devote attention to the readings at Mass.

Ministers of the Eucharist

There are also quite a number of dedicated people involved in this ministry. We welcome people who would undertake formation in this very important ministry at Mass.


Thanks to our coordinators. Yes we need more volunteers to be trained in this ministry. Part of their role is to welcome the community at the beginning of Mass.

Music Ministry

Our Parish has a number of people involved in Music Ministry. They are talented and very dedicated. Please contact these members or the Parish Office if you would like to be part of Music Ministry.

Children's Liturgy

Children's Liturgy is held during the 8.30am Sunday morning Mass.  

Children join with the Children Liturgy leaders in the parish meeting room to learn about the readings of the day in an easily understood way. 

Children engage in discussion, craft and music to bring alive the meaning of the liturgy for them. 

Children rejoin their family at the time of the Offertory. All children aged from two onwards are welcome. 

We have a great team involved in this ministry. If you would like to become engaged in this worthwhile Ministry

Bereavement Ministry

We need members for this important ministry in our Parish. Their role is to work in our team to provide pastoral care to a bereaved family, to help the family in preparing for the funeral and to assist at the funeral itself.

Their role is to have ongoing contact with those parishioners who have experienced a recent death in their family. The aim is to offer care, support and encouragement through telephone contact and/or a visit. 

Parish Planned Giving Program

This program gives parishioners the opportunity to financially support the parish through ‘Planned Giving'. Parishioners either receive a pack of envelopes or make use of the debit/credit system.

St Joseph's Primary School

Fryer Street, North Ward
Phone: (07) 4772 1973
Fax:     (07) 4771 3595

St Patrick's College

45 The Strand, Townsville
Phone: (07) 4753 0300
Fax:     (07) 4753 0336

Available Documents