Acting Head of House – Kuring-gai
How far does your circle reach?
The Mary Ward ‘open circle’ captures the importance of a sense of connectedness. During our time in virtual learning and because of restrictions on family gatherings and interstate travel we have had to be intentional in cultivating our relationships and connectedness.
Our girls and the wider Loreto Normanhurst community have dug deep in their understanding of grit and resilience to work toward their 2020 goals, albeit goals which moulded and looked a little different. Even though this flexibility meant that the girls were challenged to maintain aspects of normal life, they became more creative in adopting the opportunities made available to build relationships and learn from others’ experiences.
Many of us emerged from the school virtual learning experience in a little bit of a daze. While in a state of waiting and watching what would happen next, our micro-world demanded that we took risks, became co-designers of our present and re-aligned our vision for the immediate future. In the many Zoom meetings held across the semester and in answer to our motto of Many Bodies, One Spirit, Kuring-gai House acknowledged the difficulty in nurturing Big Sister, Little Sister relationships and checking in on friends and peers. The relationships we valued, or spent time cultivating, were more easily built when we saw the person often and were better able to recognise changes in their emotions. In this climate, we were being asked to step up and be attentive to the needs of those around us, opening our circle to those who were particularly challenged by the ever-changing milieu.
Moments like these remind us of our innate desire for community. We are very good at showing up, doing our best, filling our cups; and then, rather than pouring into others, our vulnerabilities make us question what it is that we can offer. Those around us can be the greatest reminders that we are enough and that what we have to offer is valuable, all the while putting the play in our court, requiring our decision, our ‘yes,’ our fiat.
The Gospel of Mark 5:41 echoes this same sentiment in the simple yet beautiful words ‘Talitha Koum,’ that is, ‘little girl, arise.’ Just like the girl called on by Jesus in the Gospel to rise, we too are called to take a stand, take action, knowing all too well that while the world waits for change, we are in fact the agents of it.
Our girls, ably led this year by House Captain, Nicola Sherwood and the House Council, have engaged with these values by creatively welcoming opportunities to support and embrace community. They have not been intimidated by the task of going where the need is greatest, recognising the individual needs of those around them. They have sought to encourage each other to acknowledge the ordinary moments, which have made extraordinary impacts. In doing so, they are broadening their circle, ensuring that everybody has a place to belong.
Mrs Alison De Sousa
Acting Head of Kuring-gai House