Ignatian Interschool Forum
Throughout the year, Year 11 students have had the opportunity to participate and engage in the Ignatian Interschool Student Forum, a time of shared discussion. In these forums we met with students from St Ignatius College, Kingcoppal Rose Bay, St Aloysius and Loreto Normanhurst, discussing issues that are relevant to us as the youth of Australia today. These forums provided an opportunity to meet with fellow students and engage in meaningful discussion, which is essential to building reflective communities and as well as this we had the opportunity to represent the voice of the youth and discuss issues and possible solutions.
Here is some feedback from students:
“We enjoyed that the forum made us think from a different perspective which had the advantage of strengthening our ideas about these issues and facing facts which didn’t fit in our established paradigm.”
“We learnt that there are different perspectives on a variety of issues facing society today. It’s up to us to put our minds together to find solutions for these social issues and appreciate the power we have to make a difference in society.”
“Opportunity to meet with other people and explore different values and perspectives from various schools.”
“From participating in this forum we have come to understand different perspectives, however these discussions did not necessarily lead to initiatives to enact change but rather it raised a common awareness amongst us all.”
“Offered a new perspective and further knowledge to address current issues. A channel to address issues that need discussing and provided a forum to share our own views.”
Exodus Can Drive
Congratulations and thank you to the Year 7 students who filled 10 boxes of tinned food for the Exodus Foundation. A wonderful demonstration of generosity over a two week period. We eagerly await the commencement of our whole school Christmas Hamper Appeal after the Semester Examinations.
Christmas Hamper Appeal 2016
As we approach the commencement of our annual Christmas Hamper Appeal, we will again be supporting two Women’s Refuges in Campbelltown (previously known as MARCIA). The refuges are now under the management of Vinnies and known as Eden House and Vinchez. We will also support the community of Emerton and Mount Druitt as occurred in 2015.
As in previous years, details of approximately 50 families in need will be provided to us and classes from K-12 allocated a family for whom to purchase Christmas gifts. This Christmas Appeal will commence on Monday, 14 November until Monday, 28 November.
Loreto marked Canteen’s National Bandanna Day, on Friday, 28 October. CanTeen supports young people when cancer turns their world upside down and helps them cope with the physical, emotional and practical impact of living with cancer. They support 12-24 year olds at every stage of their cancer journey. CanTeen offers support to patients, siblings, bereaved siblings, offspring and bereaved offspring. They provide funding for specialist hospital care, counselling services, information and peer support programs. Many Loreto families have been touched by cancer and it is wonderful to know such support is there for young people when they need it.
This year it was an honour, as a member of CanTeen, to run and oversee the organisation and selling of 300 bandannas and raising of over $1200 for this charity at Loreto. A big thank you especially to the girls on the Student Executive and to Monique Sheman, Sasha McCarthy and Jessica Snelleman for helping sell from the 7.30am. It was a fantastic day and it was amazing to see all the girls wearing their bandannas to support such an excellent cause. Sally Read (Year 10)
Mary Ward Justice Lecture
On Wednesday, 26 October, a group of Year 11 students attended the annual Mary Ward Justice Forum, this year hosted by Loreto Normanhurst. Loreto Normanhurst invited three notable guests to take part in this year’s lecture, on the topic of Humans, God Nature – Creative Collaboration or a Fight to the Death? The two panelists invited were Elizabeth Farrelly and Phil Glendenning, and the forum was facilitated by Julie Edwards.
Elizabeth Farrelly is an author, a columnist for the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, as well as an Associate Professor at the University of New South Wales’ Graduate School of Urbanism. Ms Farrelly explained the concept of radical openness and the connection between one’s spirituality and the environment during this tipping point of the environment. During the forum, Ms Farrelly questioned the Western World’s view of Mother Nature as an object rather than the view that nature is in fact a sacred, dynamic being. She explained that once humanity has begun to treat the environment as a commodity, one loses the respect, the sanctity and in turn the beauty of nature.
Phil Glendenning is the Director of the Edmund Rice Centre as well as the President of the Refugee Council of Australia. Mr Glendenning also raised thought-provoking perspectives on contemporary issues, such as the paradigm shift of recent times in which the language that was once used to describe humanity has now been overtaken by language of cost. For example, we once lived in a ‘society’, whereas now this is characterised as an ‘economy’. This shift in language reduces relationships to economic instead of human and focuses on what a person can do or acquire rather than valuing a person for who they are. This relates back to Australia’s treatment of refugees on Manus Island and Nauru, and this was the over-arching topic of Mr Glendenning’s lecture.
Julie Edwards is the Chief Executive Officer of Jesuit Social Services and was the facilitator for the Forum. Ms Edwards offered meaningful discussion starting points from which both the panelists and the audience could get involved, including the question of whether to achieve more openness, would it be a concept of flourishing from current state, or pruning.
Overall, all of those in attendance at the forum took away a new perception and attitude towards various issues such as the way in which we live in recent times, our treatment of the environment, and the role which religion plays in all of this. It was a wonderful and insightful night, and I encourage all to attend the next Mary Ward Justice Forum which will be held at Loreto Kirribilli in 2017. (Honor Madden – Year 11, First Councillor)
In our year of Felicity, while there’s nothing wrong with “random acts of kindness,” what if we were more intentional about those acts? Cultivating a habit of gratitude is the most reliable way to extricate ourselves from every pattern of poor decision making and disorder in our lives. We can begin by securing five minutes in our lives every day, during which time we count the blessings and mercies we have received in the past 24 hours. If we do that faithfully, we will soon find the constant generosity of God to be amazing, even overwhelming. At the end of the five minutes, you may wish to ask God to reveal to you one person for whom you should perform an act of kindness that day as a concrete expression of your gratitude. Then act accordingly.
Sharon O’Keeffe (Ms)
Director of Mission