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  • Subject Name : Religion

Research Action Plan and Validation - Part A

Primary source: Interview accounts, manuscripts, autobiographies.

Secondary source: Textbooks, research articles, almanacs.

The focus question in this study is to identify the importance of religion in the life of Mary MacKillop. The other focus questions include:

1. What were the influences in the life of Mary MacKillop?

2. What important events occurred in the life of Mary MacKillop?

3. Who were the people who modelled or taught a religious way of life to Mary MacKillop?

4. What particular beliefs and practices that Mary MacKillop held?

5. What religious activities Mary MacKillop participated in?

The purpose of this question is to identify the influence of religion in the life of Mary MacKillop and list reasons for why she has been a significant individual.

The ethical scholarship will be maintained by ensuring that all the information that is collected from the resources is well cited and referenced with due credit wherever it is required (Tsuria et al., 2017).

Note taking will be done based on the information that is retrieved while studying. Notes will be short and concise with underlined details of specificity (Tsuria et al., 2017). The notes taken will be taken under themes of study.

The information that will be collected from secondary sources will be chosen based on their reliability. The reliability will be ensured by validating the credibility of the resources (Hennik et al., 2020). That is, the information will be taken from peer-reviewed articles and journals with high impact factors. Other sources will include credible books and websites that are affiliated with a reputable organisation or government.<table style="margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="100%">


Focus Question



Influences in Mary MacKillop’s life

Mary MacKillop’s life is known to have been influenced by Father Patrick Geoghegan who was a friend to the family. This influence came early in her life and led to her journey towards a religious life.

She also trained herself in the direction of Father Julian Tenison-Woods

Thorpe (n.d.)

The influence of religion in Mary MacKillop’s life

Had strong influence from the Thirsty land and Celtic Australian church. Developed devotional life and focussed on working for humanity.

Trustees of the Sisters of Saint Joseph, 2020

People who modelled or taught a religious way of life to Mary MacKillop

Father Julian Tenison-Woods was her primary teacher.

Thorpe (n.d.)

Important events in the life of Mary MacKillop

Jan 15 (1842): Birth

Aug 15 (1850): Holy communion

Aug 15(1867): Opening first convent cottage

Jan 1(1875): Elected as superior general.

Aug 8(1909): Death

Franklin, 2017

Particular beliefs and practices that Mary MacKillop held

“Rule of life” was developed by Woods and Mary MacKillop that focussed in community practice for the poor and dependence on the divine province. She also focussed on establishing no ownership of personal belongings.

Trustees of the Sisters of Saint Joseph, 2020

Religious activities Mary MacKillop took part in

Founded first order of nuns in Australia.

Established St. Joseph school

Tranter, 2019

Saying and writings of Mary MacKillop

“Find happiness in making others happy.”

“We must teach more by example than by word.”

Thorpe (n.d.)

The evaluation of others/Mary MacKillop’s legacy

Sister of St. Josephs has been established for goodness, love for people and the most marginalised through the trust in God.


Research Action Plan and Validation - Part B

How Did Religion Play a Part in The Life of Mary Mac Killop and Why Is She a Significant Person?

Religion had a strong influence on the life of Mary. She has received a private education chiefly from her father who had studied priesthood at Rome (Tranter, 2019). She also had a strong influence on a family friend, Father Patrick Geoghegan that helped her pave her path towards the sanctity and nature of God and took her decision to have a strictly penitential form of religious life. She also went to Europe and placed her wills under the directions of Father Julian Tension Woods (Franklin, 2017). Mary promoted sisterhood and will work towards the marginalized. She was especially concerned about the poor and devoted her life to their well being. With woods, she had developed the role of life as a community for the action for the impoverished with no ownership for the personal belongings and willingness to work. The sisters who worked were also popularly called the “Brown Joeys” in the local community (Trustees of the Sisters of Saint Joseph, 2020). 

Mary MacKillop is significant as she was the founding member of the first order of nuns in Australia at the St. Joseph of the Sacred Heart, she has been known as the righteous and one of the most prominent figures in Christianity in Australia being an educator and a social reformer. She focused on providing teaching and charity in society (Tranter, 2019). She also won the papal approval for the Josephite rule and established a strong, fundamental approach for divinity and was identified as a saint. Through her life, even when she had several conflicts with the priests, she asserted on her intact values and wellbeing of the community through autonomous nature (Franklin, 2017). This, led her to become a significant figure in Christianity, and particularly in South Australia. 

References for Research Action Plan and Validation

Franklin, J. (2017). The Sydney intellectual/religious scene, 1916-2016. St Mark's Review, (242), 20.

Hennink, M., Hutter, I., & Bailey, A. (2020). Qualitative research methods. USA: SAGE Publications Limited.

Thorpe, O. (n.d.) 'MacKillop, Mary Helen (1842–1909)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University. Retrieved from: http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/mackillop-mary-helen-4112/text6575 [Accessed on: 23 June 2020]

Tranter, J. (2019). Father Julian Jenison Woods, 130 years on... Journal of the Australian Catholic Historical Society, 40, 16-23.

Trustees of the Sisters of Saint Joseph (2020). Mary’s legacy. Retrieved from: https://www.sosj.org.au/our-foundress-mary-mackillop/legacy/ [Accessed on: 23 June 2020]

Tsuria, R., Yadlin-Segal, A., Vitullo, A., & Campbell, H. A. (2017). Approaches to digital methods in studies of digital religion. The Communication Review, 20(2), 73-97.

Remember, at the center of any academic work, lies clarity and evidence. Should you need further assistance, do look up to our Religion Assignment Help

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