How it all started…
Father Darcy McCarthy, Alstonville’s first Parish Priest, began making puddings for the Church Cake Stall in 1986 as a hobby to raise much needed funds for the Parish school, considered the ‘worst in the Diocese’.
Demand for the delicious puddings began to grow and the pudding production moved from Father McCarthy’s kitchen to the Factory. Since inception, Father Mac’s have sold over a million heavenly puddings.
The Parish is now able to assists other charities, schools, clubs and businesses with their fundraising.
- 1981 – Alstonville Parish founded with limited funds and buildings in need of extensive repair. Father Darcy McCarthy (Father Mac) appointed as first Parish Priest.
- 1985 – Father McCarthy makes first puddings for Church Cake Stall in the presbytery kitchen.
- 1986 – Application for Capital Grant for new school buildings refused.
- 1987 – Father Mac begins serious pudding production with the purchase of an ‘atmospheric’ steamer. 11,000 puddings produced.
- 1990 – Pudding production reaches 45,000.
- 1991 – In January Father Mac was diagnosed with cancer. He died on September 5, 1991. Parishioners continue with pudding production. Pudding production reaches 58,000.
- 1992 – Father Frank Mulcahy appointed as Parish Priest. Father Mac’s Heavenly Puddings registered as a limited company to protect copyright.
- 1993 – Pudding Factory extended and ovens increased to four. to see the pudding volunteers hard at work.
- 1994 – New coolroom constructed. Jewel Food Stores (NSW) begin selling Father Mac’s Heavenly Puddings.
- 1996-7 – Selected supermarkets begin selling Father Mac’s Heavenly Puddings. Buildings upgraded to meet stringent health requirements and improve worker comfort. Application for Capital Grant for extensions to school buildings refused – again! Parish decides to finance new school buildings through borrowed funds. Pudding sales assist with securing loan and meeting loan repayments.
- 1998 – Construction of new administration building and library completed. The factory is now located in one of the original class rooms of St Joseph’s school.
- 1999 – The Parish is now able to increase assistance to other charities while supplementing our own needs.
- 2006 – A part -time Family Counselor is employed in the Parish, also the Parish Pastoral Council conducts an extensive survey to update Parish needs. Father Mac’s assists financially in the areas of need.
- 2007/8 – Parish continues with Pastoral Council Planing.Commences Family Group Movement and implements recommendation from Parish Social Justice including Adult Faith Education .
- 2009 – With the aid of Government Funding and Parish Loans the New Parish Hall and four additional Classrooms are completed.
- 2010 -12 -13 – Substantial donations to the Zimbabwe feeding programme for children in Harare, Binga and Zambezi Valley and the community of Christon Bank where the Catholic Church is trying to help those who are literally starving.While supporting the extensive Parish activities is our primary task, Our Lady of the Rosary Parish, Father Mac’s Puddings and the Grafton Sisters of Mercy continue helping the children and families of Zimbabwe.A Gluten Free Pudding added to the range.Substantial donations following “Christmas in July” Fundraising to Zimbabwe Orphans- Caritas Pakistan Flood Appeal and Lismore Soup Kitchen.Funds raised at Melbourne Cup functions adds to these donations! Annual Fundraising “Puddings in July” enabled substantial donations to Makumbi Childrens’ Home – Zimbabwe, and to Caritas to assist the victims of the terrible drought in the countries in the Horn of Africa.
- We have assisted with comfort parcel to our Peace keeping forces in East Timor.
- 2014 Donations to Local Charities -Meals for Homeless – through the generosity of our Sydney helpers funds to the Retired Priests Fund of the Sydney Archdioceses . Donations tto Zimbabwe — Zambuko House . Zambuko means “Bridge” here they educate and rehabilitate Street Kids. We helped to replace the “Chicken Farm” stock.
- 2015 — Annual “Pudds in July” Funds directed to Arrupe Centre where children with hearing impairments are educated.
- 2016 — Annual “Pudds in July” Funds directed to help Educate Children. Many children are simply sent home from School if they are unable to pay.