The ACU Centre for Liturgy provides parishes and deaneries throughout Australia with specialised training and formation workshops, as well as a range of short courses. 

 "Mass cannot merely be listened to, as if we were just spectators of something that slips away without our involvement. Mass is always celebrated, and not only by the priest who presides it, but by all Christians who experience it. And the centre is Christ! All of us, in the diversity of gifts and ministries, join in his action, because he, Christ, is the Protagonist of the liturgy."       
Pope Francis
General Audience 3 February 2021 

Become an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion - new online training program

Effective liturgical celebrations require well-formed liturgical ministers to serve the needs of the assembly. Our comprehensive online training program will prepare you to offer your gifts for the glory of God and the benefit of your local community.

Created by leading Australian liturgy specialists, this five-week program fosters and develops knowledgeable, well-prepared, highly skilled and hospitable Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion. High-quality content is presented in an innovative and engaging way, and it offers quality liturgical formation in a supportive environment – no matter the size or location of your faith community. 

Download the flyer here

While this program is designed for new ministers, those with many years of ministry have found it to be an outstanding way to refresh their skills and deepen their understanding of the liturgy.

Upon successful completion of the program, you will receive a certificate of completion from the ACU Centre for Liturgy. This program is supported by the Bishops Commission for Liturgy of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference. 

The next EMHC online training program will start in February 2023.

To find out more and start the registration process go here 

 The modules were informative and I feel more confident in engaging in the EMHC ministry. I have a greater understanding of the parts of the Mass and feel my faith has deepened as well.”
Jenny, Sydney
EMHC online Training Program

Pastoral Formation Day:

The Christian's Final Journey 9 February 2023

This formation and professional learning program is designed for Roman Catholic clergy, funeral directors, parish pastoral care and frontline staff (including pastoral associates, parish secretaries, youth ministers and family faith educators), teachers, APREs and school staff, and anyone interested in learning more about how Catholics prepare and celebrate funerals.

The Pastoral Formation Day investigates Catholic practices around burial and cremation, how to support those who grieve, and includes an opportunity to prepare a Catholic funeral for yourself or another person. It will facilitate a conversation between clergy and funeral directors, incorporating problem-solving, sharing experiences, and identifying best practice for Catholic funerals informed by expert advice.

Session 1:   Dying, death and rites for the Journey to New Life

Session 2:   Planning your funeral and care of the grieving

Session 3a: Celebrating the Order of Christian Funerals

Session 3b: Clergy and funeral directors working cooperatively (professional learning)

Session 4:   Do's and don'ts of Catholic funerals: identifying best practice

Open to the public, this pastoral formation day is presented by ACU’s Professor Clare Johnson and staff from Catholic Cemeteries and Crematoria.

Download the flyer here

February 9, 2023

Time: 9am-5pm (registration from 8.30am)

Venue: Polding Centre, 133 Liverpool St, Sydney 

Registration Fee: 

- $60 per person (includes tea/coffee, lunch and a workbook)

- $120 per person for funeral directors (includes tea/coffee, lunch, a workbook and five years’ certification upon application) 

Registration is essential by: Friday February 3, 2023

Enquiries: or 02 9701 4751

Register here

Pastoral formation days available on demand

Be not afraid: preparing and celebrating sacraments of healing 

What Christians believe about sickness and sacramental healing becomes especially important when we are confronted with serious illness or the danger of death. The Catholic sacraments of healing exist to strengthen those who are being tried by illness or impairment, bodily or spiritual. Within the church’s pastoral approach to healing and caring for the sick, the Sacrament of Anointing raises up the sick person and strengthens their soul to sustain them while they are ill or approaching death. The Sacrament of Penance offers the opportunity to heal relationships with God, those who have been wronged, and the church community, while the Sacrament of Eucharist nourishes the sick person on their journey.

This pastoral formation day investigates Catholic beliefs about the healing power of prayer and sacraments.  It looks at how we celebrate the healing brought about by reconciliation and forgiveness.  Priests experienced in administering the sacraments of healing discuss how they care for the sick spiritually and sacramentally. All participants will engage in a consideration of how lay people can care for the sick by visiting them, and offering comfort, assistance and prayer. The day concludes with an exploration of Viaticum and how to minister Communion to the sick.

Session 1: What do Catholics believe about Sacraments of Healing: Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick?

Session 2: How do Catholics celebrate reconciliation and forgiveness?

Session 3: How do priests, deacons and lay ministers care for the sick?

Session 4: Learn about Viaticum and how to minister Communion to the sick.

From death to new life: preparing and celebrating Catholic funerals

What Christians believe about the meaning of life and death and the promise of eternal life comes into sharp focus when a loved one dies. Catholic funerals provide a way for mourners to remember and give thanks for the life of the deceased person in a series of beautiful rites that both honour the dead and express Christian belief and hope in eternal life.

Have you ever thought about what will happen when you or a loved one dies? What decisions do you need to make when you prepare to celebrate a funeral in the Catholic tradition? This pastoral formation day investigates a Christian theology of dying and death and explore how the Order of Christian Funerals celebrates death in a specifically Catholic way. Experienced priests and funeral directors will discuss how they care for the dead and for those who grieve. This pastoral formation day includes an opportunity to prepare a Catholic funeral for yourself or a loved one.

Session 1: Raised to new life – a Christian theology of dying and death

Session 2: Celebrating death the Catholic way – the Order of Christian Funerals

Session 3: Collaborating in care – funeral directors and priests in dialogue

Session 4: A fitting conclusion – preparing your Catholic funeral.

"I thought the funeral ministry day was superb " 
Fr Greg
Forster, NSW

Our workshops

Our specialised training and formation workshops focus on a variety of topics, including:

Training parish ministers

Speaking Awesome Words Lector Training 

The ministry of Lector requires skill and practice so that the word of God is brought to life in the liturgy. The ACU Centre for Liturgy offers parishes a two-hour interactive workshop which provides current and aspiring lectors with techniques for effective proclamation.

Download flyer (PDF, 3.6MB)

Register your interest

Jason was a great presenter, very patient, friendly and encouraging – I really liked his practical tips”
Haberfield Lectors Course

Speaking Awesome Words II: Lector Training

The Lector masterclass supports and challenges experienced Lectors to fine-tune their proclamation skills.

Download flyer (PDF, 3.6MB)

Register your interest

I could not believe how quickly the time went during the workshop. Sharon’s ability to convey such a huge amount of very helpful information in a truly inspirational and seamless manner and in such a short time was incredible.”
Bega, NSW / Speaking Awesome Words

Our training programs for other parish ministers 

  • Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion
  • The Ministry of Cantor
  • Accompanying the assembly’s worship
  • How to choose ‘good’ liturgical music
  • How to engage the assembly in song
  • Serving the People of God in Gladness: Lay Liturgical Ministry
  • How we do what we do matters! Exploring the ars celebrandi in parish liturgies
  • No longer two, but one: preparing to celebrate your Catholic marriage
  • Born anew by water and spirit: preparing for your child’s baptism
  • It’s about time! Understanding the liturgical year
“The workshop was informative, inspirational and interesting”. “All good, well structured, right amount of time.”
Pambula, NSW / Speaking Awesome Words
Clare was great – engaging, knowledgeable and consistent.”
Shannon Alexander
Funeral Director, King’s Funerals, Geelong

Information about fees

ACU Centre for Liturgy charges fees for its programs and services, operating on a not-for-profit basis consistent with ACU’s constitution. We are committed to providing our services at a reasonable rate.

Download Information About Fees (PDF, 134 KB)

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