Mary Ward was a women of great faith and endless compassion. She saw the need to bring together, the people of God and gathered women in her home to pray and share. The hard work and courage of Mary Ward is being highlighted in the drive to have her beatified.
A person is first named Servant of God then following processes through the Vatican Congregation for the Causes of Saints can become Venerable, then Blessed and finally made a Saint. During this week students received some information on the campaign to beatify Mary Ward. Students will have an opportunity in their Religious Education classes this term to look at the process towards Sainthood and consider the reasons why Mary Ward should be canonised. They will receive a pamphlet and a bookmark which have the beautiful Prayer for Mary Ward’s Beatification and a Petition Prayer. In order to be named Blessed there needs to be evidence of a miracle. The Petition Prayer helps collect evidence that Mary Ward can intercede directly with God to help those who are praying through her. Mary Ward was a remarkable woman and, as the Petition Prayer says, “She lived and worked for your greater glory, for the good of the Church, and for the nature of faith, and for the dignity of women.” In 1984 Saint Teresa wrote “Mary Ward is God’s gift to the Church and the world for she brought to the Church and to the Consecrated life a new dimension – Religious Women involved in the field of education and in the formation of a new type of womanhood. She could be this gift only because like Mary – she was the handmaid of the Lord” (Written for the foreward of “Till God Will” Mary Ward through her writings edited by Gillian Orchard CJ cited in “Saint Terese of Calcutta. Memories of her years with Loreto 1928 – 1948”).
Venerable Mary Ward pray for us and give us your spirit
Our Year 12 students are in the midst of their HSC examinations and will write about significant individuals as varied as Martin Luther and Dalai Lama, as well on current issues such as environmental ethics and the role baptism and pilgrimages play in the lives of believers. Year 11 are starting their HSC studies and beginning with Religion in Australia Post 1945. The unit considers the Religious Landscape in Australia and the impact of immigration and secularism on that landscape. Students also investigate contemporary Aboriginal Spirituality and the effect dispossession and legislation have had on an ability to continue their spirituality journey and fulfil ceremonial duties and obligations to land.
Year 10 have moved across to the new semester with a new student group experiencing Community Service. Feedback about their involvement has been overwhelmingly positive and they will be building on that experience with the Emmaus Service Ministry Retreat next year. Details of this program will be given to Year 10 in the coming weeks. Year 9 have been looking at the Sacraments of Healing – Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick – both wonderful sacraments asking us to reach out and feel the gentle touch of the hand of God. The sign and symbols of Baptism are taking up the attention of Year 8 at the moment. As they prepare for their exams they will also revise their study of Images of Good and Evil and consider where in all that these opposing forces present, they can find God. Year 7 have been looking at Scripture and literary forms contained in the Old and New Testament and the importance of the sacred stories we share.
As all students prepare for examinations I encourage them to ask their teachers if they need clarification of any matters and wish them all the best. Religious Studies teachers are Mr Richard Cameron, Mrs Michelle Clark, Mr Morgan Dunn, Mrs Kristy Ferguson, Ms Ashleigh Fowler, Mrs Cecile Heyen, Ms Sharon O’Keeffe and Ms Gabrielle Partington.
Christina Ryan (Mrs)
Religious Studies Co-ordinator