Principal’s Message: Week 5, Term 3, 2019

Principal’s Message: Week 5, Term 3, 2019

To the friends and families of the St Edmund’s Community,

Vibrant Spirit.  Strong Character.  Tailored Learning.

 “He opens his arms to the poor and reaches his hands to the needy” (Proverbs 31:20)

Last Friday night I had the privilege of visiting our students who were sleeping out in our gym.  Mr Michael Monagle, Assistant Principal of Mission and Identity, organised our second annual “Sleep Out” with students from Year 4 – 12.  The boys slept in the College gym and were given the opportunity to become more informed about the issues that homeless people face every day.  The evening began with students sharing what they already knew about the issue of homelessness, followed by the viewing of a powerful documentary focusing on a small group of homeless men in Melbourne, with a focus on their experiences on the street, the circumstances that led them there and how they felt about being homeless.  I was very impressed with the authentic manner in which students engaged with this documentary and the articulate and thoughtful level of their feedback and responses following the viewing.  Students were also involved in activities promoting empathy with the homeless by comparing their everyday lives with the challenges of being homeless and exploring the bare essentials needed to live on the street. These are important activities, particularly at this time of our cold Canberra winter.  The sleep out provides support to HOME in Queanbeyan. My sincere thanks to the students who participated in this year’s sleep out and thanks also to the organiser, Mr Michael Monagle, and to those teachers who also attended and gave up their warm homes and peaceful night to assist in this event, Ms Bridget Cusack, Ms Kylie Rose and Mr Kenneth Beaton.

In 2017, the Chairman of the Australian Catholic Social Justice Council, Bishop Vincent Long, wrote: “The figure on a street corner huddled on a bench or in a doorway – even in the doorway of a church – is a daily rebuke to us as followers of Christ in a rich society … The face of homelessness is not just that of the woman or man sleeping rough. Homeless people find themselves in run-down, exploitative boarding houses, or sleeping in cars, or trekking from house to house of friends or family in the hope that there will be a spare bed, a couch or a bit of floor to sleep on for a week or a night.” Bishop Long added that Jesus “spent his life seeking out and ministering to the excluded and rootless, and reminded us constantly that our obligation is first of all to them”.

Congratulations to Ryan Navin (Year 9, Mulrooney) on being selected to compete at the 2019 National Club Championships on the Gold Coast in September as part of the Southern Canberra Gymnastics Club.   We wish Ryan the very best in this competition.

Last Friday we farewelled Mrs Natalie Janes from the Junior School as she embarked on maternity leave.  We extend our very best wishes to Mrs Janes and her family on the birth of her second child.

We invite all fathers, grandfathers, uncles and carers to celebrate Father’s Day with us. The College is hosting a Father’s Day Mass and Morning Tea on Friday 30 August.  The commencement time is 9.20 a.m. and the venue will be either the College’s Sacred Heart Chapel or the Hall depending on numbers.  Your son will be able to attend the Mass as well, so come along and enjoy a very special event where we celebrate fatherhood and relationships.   Having grown up without a father since the age of 8, I am well aware of the sensitivities surrounding events such as these.  If this is the case with your family, please do not hesitate to invite a father figure or a significant male in the life of your son.  All are welcome.

Please RSVP by Monday 26 August.  Please search for the event on our Facebook page or click on this link:


Celebrated last Thursday 15 August

Loving God,
all creation rightly gives you praise
for all life and all holiness come from you.
In the plan of Your wisdom, she who bore the Christ in her womb
was raised body and soul in glory to be with Him in heaven.
May we follow Mary’s example in reflecting your holiness
and join in her hymn of endless life and praise.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.

Blessed Edmund Rice, pray for us.
Live Jesus in our Hearts, forever.

Christus Lux Mea
Joe Zavone
College Principal