From the Acting Principal

Mr Tom Ryan, Acting Principal

Mr Peter Houlihan has commenced his period of Enrichment Leave and in my first Duce as Acting Principal, I would like to take the opportunity to reflect on the theme of connection and how it links to two recent significant College events.

People tell stories and stories make a people”. 

Dr Rose-Marie Prosser

As humans, our connection with each other defines who we are. Last week adventurer, businessman and old Collegian, Mark George (Class of 1984) spoke to over 500 fathers and sons at the College’s Annual Father’s Day Breakfast. Mark highlighted through recounting stories of his great adventures including; climbing Everest, skiing solo to the North and South Poles, the importance of connection with one’s father and the powerful life-long impact this can have. He used his affinity with the natural environment that was the catalyst for a bond forged with his own father as a child and continues to this day. He urged the young to a connection with their own fathers, whatever it is and embrace it.

In a different way, on Friday 23 August the Lasallian staff communities of De La Salle Malvern, St Bedes Mentone. St John’s Dandenong and St James East Bentleigh gathered as one to mark the death of St John Baptist de La Salle, Patron of Teachers and founder of “The Brothers of the Christian Schools”.

Special guests on the day were the eminent historian and Lasallian academic, Br Gerard Rummery FSC, Brother Visitor Br David Hawke FSC and Dr Rose-Marie Prosser. Br Gerard gave a powerful keynote address that emphasised the connection we as staff in Lasallian schools have with each other, our school communities and thousands of Brothers and lay educators back to the time of St John Baptist de La Salle in France 300 years ago. Br Gerard reminded us that as educators we have to work “in association” with young people and we must “live and work in the world of today”.

As a school community at Malvern, we can reflect on the simple, yet profound questions Br Gerard posed; “Who are we? Why do we exist? What do we do? It is clear that the legacy of St John Baptist De la Salle and all who have worked in Lasallian schools is now in our hands. The number of Brothers in Australia and in many parts of the world is declining, yet the spirit and charism of St John Baptist de La Salle are still very much alive and continue to evolve in unexpected ways. At De La Salle Malvern, we continue to write our story with every cohort of students in our care.

As Father’s Day 2019 approaches many fathers and sons actively seek to nurture a connection through common interests and values. In our Christian tradition, we look to the example of Jesus who modelled a way of life through his connection and presence amongst people. May we strive to follow his commitment to others through our lives. Happy Father’s Day to all our fathers.

We have less than a month until the end of Term 3. There are some wonderful College events planned over this time including the Winter Ensemble Concert, the Senior Play with OLSH, the Junior Production with Sacre Coeur and a community Mass at St Cecilia’s Parish. All these ventures give students, parents and staff the opportunity to come together as one community. I commend these activities to you and look forward to seeing you on these occasions.

Mr Tom Ryan
Acting Principal

Back to The Duce Issue 2019 12 - 29 August 2019