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The Life of Saint Mary of the Cross, Mary MacKillop 2 VOLUME SET

The Life of Saint Mary of the Cross, Mary MacKillop 2 VOLUME SET[9780522866230]

The full and official biography written by the Postulator of the Cause for her Canonisation Father Paul Gardiner S.J.

Author: Father Paul Gardiner S.J.

Publisher: The Miegunyah Press

ISBN: 9780522866230

Pages: Hardback Leather Cover 2 volumes 1520 pages

“Mary of the Cross! What a glorious name, my sister. How true, too, in your eventful life … God is good. If you have had the cross as your portion, you have won also the love of Australia”. Fr Donald MacKillop S.J. to his older sister Mary, 1902

This book contains the text of the Positio Super Virtutibus (deposition on the virtues) of the Servant of God, Mother Mary MacKillop, written by the Postulator of the Cause for her canonization, Father Paul Gardiner S.J., for the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints, under the guidance of the Relator of the cause, Father Peter Gumpel S.J., and presented to the Congregation in December 1989. The original biographical work, published in two volumes (all contained herein), was followed by a third volume summarising Mary’s qualities—the Informatio Super Virtutibus (outline of the virtues).

The text of the Positio remains unchanged herein, but for the general reader the Postulator has added an English translation [in square brackets] of terms and passages in Latin, Italian, German and French. Also inserted by the Editor, in (round) [or square] brackets, are occasional explanatory clauses to make matters comprehensible to a wider audience, or to update a point of fact. A few of these were already in square brackets in the original text.

Omitted are most of the Positio’s maps and all its photographs, readily available on websites and in other works, in particular, in An Extraordinary Australian: Mary MacKillop, Paul Gardiner S.J. (497 pp., E.J. Dwyer 1993).

On the basis of the human historical evidence in the Positio (and preceding any examination of claimed miracles), on 13 June 1992 Mary MacKillop was declared Venerable, i.e., one who practised the human and Christian virtues to a heroic degree. After this judgement, and the attestation in 1993 of a miracle wrought through her intercession, Mary was beatified by Pope John Paul II on 19 January 1995, i.e., declared Blessed, a title that authorises public veneration and invocation of her in ceremonies of the Church, through an appointed feast-day, liturgical celebrations in her honour, and so on, in designated territories, such as the country of her origin and other countries where she worked, or which have a strong link to her.

Upon the verification in 2009 of a second miracle, the path lay open for Mary’s canonisation (literally, enrolment in the ‘canon’ or roll of the Church’s Saints). Pope Benedict XVI canonized Saint Mary of the Cross, in Rome, on Sunday 17 October 2010. The title of Saint mandates universal veneration and accords her the highest honours of the altar.


Father Gardiner S.J., aged 91, of Penola, served as Postulator for the Cause of the Canonisation of Mary MacKillop from 1984 to 2008. He started researching Mary MacKillop’s life in 1983 and wrote the Positio for the Cause of Mary MacKillop, on her life and virtues – this 2-volume work, now made available to the public for the first time. This work led to her earning the title Venerable, her beatification, and her eventual canonisation on 17th October 2010. "She was, from a human point of view, a very admirable person and if people imitated her behaviour – apart from her religious depth and her faith in God – if people imitated her ordinary way of dealing with her fellow humans, I think it would be a much better Australia". Father Gardiner S.J., OAM.
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