Congratulations to Aiden Bird, Julian Bunnik, Thomas D’Amelio, Michael Gashi, Max Higginbotham, Ben Mazur, James Mazur, Gavin Ng, Cohen Pedruco, Nathan Ramagnano, Ronan Shaw, Scott Sisson and Anthony Hrelja who were Confirmed at St Anthony’s Parish on Sunday 10 September. Also, congratulations to our Year 7 students; Matt Dell’Oro, Kyle Loughnan, Joshua O’Leary, Locky Rowe and Michael Yuen who received the Eucharist for the first time and the Sacrament of Confirmation. In a beautiful ceremony, enhanced by the musicians and choristers of the Parish, Bishop Elliott urged the young people to be strong in their faith and to stand firm for what they believe.
In the lead up to Confirmation the students gathered with their families for a family Mass and a Retreat day. These are some of the comments from their experience exploring Catholic Melbourne.
“After I finished Reconciliation (at St Francis) I came out and felt like a new man… I had released all my worries and now I feel much calmer.”
“I learnt that St Francis Church is the oldest church in Melbourne and was surrounded by a creek and bushland.”
“I really enjoyed the visit (to St Patrick’s Cathedral) and the quiz. It was the best visit I have done.”
“This place (Carmelite Chapel, Kew) was awesome and very cool, because the nuns were very nice and the church was amazing.”
“St Anthony’s Shrine (Hawthorn) was built by the Italians and they brought their saints with them. It is different than our churches.”
“Mother Teresa started the Order (Missionaries of Charity) because she wanted to help people who were suffering. She is dead now, but the Order carries on her work.”
Wilcannia In Their Own Words
Recently a group of Year 11 students travelled to Wilcannia, a small town located within the Central Darling Shire in north western New South Wales. This was the third largest inland port in the country during the great river boat era of the mid-19th century and is today home to a significant Aboriginal community. Under the watchful eye of Mr Tim Hogan and Mr David Murray, and with the support of Mr Tom Buick, Mr Jeremy Reynolds and Mr John Egan, the students travelled to St Therese’s School to undertake maintenance work and interact with the students.
In a debrief with these students last week this is what they had to say:
“We all worked extremely hard over the week and we built a new garden and new paths. This was the best thing I have ever done by far and if we could have stayed longer with the kids, I’m sure every one of us would have liked to do that.”
“We did landscaping and painting for the school and worked with the kids. When I heard their stories I realised that I am grateful for what I have been given.”
“It’s a real eye opener and it has changed me as a person.”
“Amazing trip… made me realise how good social service makes you feel and I want to include more in my life.”
“I feel as though we were able to really give the kids a reason to be excited to learn and come to school.”
All of the students expressed a deep appreciation for their experiences and the impact it has had on their lives; stating that they have come to value how fortunate they are with their own families, school and future opportunities. Perhaps most significantly they realised how influential they could be as role models and big brothers for the children at the school.
Mrs Joan Ferguson