Alexander MacKillop


> Alexander MacKillop

Alexander MacKillop's Grave.

Before arriving in Australia from the Scottish Highlands on board the Brilliant in January 1838, Alexander MacKillop had led an academic life.

His early training for the priesthood in seminaries in Rome and Scotland left him well versed in theology, philosophy and languages, and while he never formally completed his studies, this education became Alexander's greatest gift to his eldest daughter, Mary MacKillop. Unable to pay for formal schooling, Alexander elected to teach her himself, nurturing not only her keen intelligence and enquiring mind but a profound love of the Catholic faith and social justice.

When continuing financial difficulties forced the family to separate in the mid 1860s, Alexander went to live with his youngest brother, Peter MacKillop, at Mount Sturgeon Plains Station on Linlithgow Road south of Dunkeld. It was in nearby Hamilton that Alexander died suddenly at the age of 56. His death was reported in the Spectator of 23 December 1868:

"It is satisfactory to know that his wife was present at the time of his death, and that he breathed his last in apparent peace. Mr MacKillop was a Roman Catholic, and was at one time intended for the priesthood. He leaves a large family to mourn his loss. The funeral took place on Sunday last."

Be inspired by Mary MacKillop's journey along the early path to sainthood

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