Our Pastoral Team

Fr. Stephen Bliss OFM

(Parish Priest)

I am a Franciscan Friar who joined the Ipswich Catholic community in mid 2016. I have previously ministered in parishes throughout Queensland, Victoria, Tasmania and New South Wales. I have also ministered to those in formation (at seminary) and in Administration of the Order. I enjoy parish ministry as it is an opportunity to journey with parishioners in their faith and for me to be inspired and challenged by their Gospel living.

I try and follow the simple way that St. Francis of Assisi lived the Gospel of Jesus, and in my life I give witness to the Franciscan values of joy, peace and respect. Whilst here at Ipswich, I help in whatever way I can in the Sacramental life of the Community.

Lord, make us instruments of Thy peace. Where there is hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is discord, union; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy.

It is my pleasure to introduce myself. I was born and raised in the south of India, in Karnataka state. I am from a family of nine including my parents. I have six siblings with three brothers and three sisters. My mother was called into eternal bliss in 2019 and my father in 2020. After completing my Grade 10 education, I joined the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate (otherwise known as CMI) in 1988. During the seminary formation of nearly fifteen years, I have completed my religious and secular studies as well and was ordained a religious priest on 28 December 2002.

The first appointment after Ordination was as parish priest, in one of the parishes under the Diocese of Belthangady, in Karnataka state for a year, from March 2003 to April 2004. During the year 2004 and 2005, I completed a Bachelor of Education [B Ed]. From the years 2005 to 2011, I served as a Principal in one of the colleges of CMI St. Paul’s Province Mysuru, which had nearly 2300 students and 130 teaching and support staff. I was also part of our retreat team from 2011 to 2012. Following this ministry, I was appointed Associate Director and Principal of Chavara Cultural Centre. This is one of our cultural centres based in Kochi, in the state of Kerala state. This appointment was for two years from 2012 to 2014.

From 2014 to 2016, I had the opportunity to complete my Masters in Kannada Literature. Besides studying I also concurrently served as associate parish priest in St. Mary’s Church, Bangalore. From 2017 to 2021 I was appointed as the Principal in one of our colleges in Mysuru, namely Bharath Matha Composite PU College, Koppa. I arrived in Brisbane, Australia on 21 August 2022. I look forward to being part of this vibrant parish community here at Ipswich.

Fr. Jose Panampuzha CMI

(Assistant Priest)