Dean of Development and Alumni
The Power of Stories
In a community like Loreto Normanhurst, we are surrounded daily by the power of stories. Stories of those who have come before us, in this physical space that is 122 years old, stories that are part of our 410 year-old Loreto tradition, and the stories of those in our community today. These story lines are integral to connecting generations, and to honour the past, nourish our present day and guide our future tomorrow.
Stories are all around us. They are what move us, make us feel alive and inspire us; and we can learn so much from the stories of others. Recently we had the privilege of listening to four ex-students at the ‘Women of Influence’ evening. They shared their life journey and gave us insight into how they established their prominent careers. Afterwards as I was reflecting on what contributed to the event being the success that it was, I realised that it was the ex-students’ stories, and the powerful Loreto Normanhurst thread within them. There was a memorable moment at the end of the evening when a message from their stories connected in a powerful way – and that message was to ‘be yourself’. Having taken very different paths in life, all presenters spoke of Loreto Normanhurst as a place in which they were always nurtured for who they are. Stories have the power to inspire hope and change lives. Through their stories that night, we reconnected, celebrated, and gained inspiration.
At our recent Open Day, we joyously shared the Loreto Normanhurst story with hundreds of visitors and members of the wider community. The day centred around human connections through experiences, with current, past, and future students, families and staff immersed in a vibrant celebration of community.
A couple of weeks ago at the Primary Parent Welcome Dinner, I had a delightful conversation with a family whose daughter had just started in Year 5, the fourth generation to attend Loreto Normanhurst. We have many families with a similar background, whose legacy and unbroken chain of stories passed on through generations provides a timeless link that is so important and special.
The Loreto Normanhurst story continues to flourish with our wonderful tradition and culture passed on from one generation to another. I leave with you the following quotes from ex-students that form part of the rich tapestry of the life stories of Loreto Normanhurst.
“I loved my time at Loreto and whilst there are so many positives I can mention, the one that has been so important for me has been that feeling of community – a bond of friendship and a support network, automatically assumed amongst those of us who attended the school. That has meant so much to me on so many occasions.” – Karen Robinson, Class of ‘86
“Loreto Normanhurst made me who I am today.” – Judge Kate Traill, Class of ‘79
“Loreto Normanhurst taught me to speak up, to stand my ground, and that women can do anything.” – Genevieve Jacobs, Class of ‘84
“Loreto Normanhurst has taught me values that I will take into the wider world and nourished friendships that will last a lifetime.” – Isabella Hamblin, Class of ’18
“At Loreto Normanhurst I was able to learn about myself and build confidence in what I liked doing and being a part of, while achieving and striving to achive.” – Taylah O’Brien, Class of ’18
They say that a true love story never ends, and so as you write your own Loreto Normanhurst story, may it be one of love, felicity, fulfillment, and may it last for many generations to come.
Ms Grace Paraino
Dean of Development and Alumni