Pastoral Care

Pastoral Care

Practising gratitude and giving thanks

St Ignatius reminds us to face life with reality, desires to love need to be transformed into deeds and that love, if sincere, consists in a mutual sharing…this means a sharing of something we have or are able to give.

There has been much written about the benefits of showing gratitude to others and how this can boost people’s health and happiness. Some effective ‘gratitude interventions’ include writing a gratitude letter, keeping a gratitude journal, or savouring the moment. When one savours the moment they take time to notice the beauty and pleasures in their daily life. Loyola University psychologist Fred Bryant has shown that savouring positive experiences can heighten your positive responses to them. A key to savouring is what Bryant calls “thanksgiving”, or expressing gratitude for the blessings that come your way, large and small.

This week, I’d like to share with you the savouring of the moment for Year 12 who lead their House in a time of reflection, where they spent time sharing stories with their Tutor Groups about what their Loreto education has meant to them and what it has equipped them to do when they leave school. This particular time together is so personal and moving, where all of a sudden there is the realisation from Year 12 that it is time to move on. Have they achieved all they set out to achieve? In preparing for their reflection, the students are asked to consider the following things before they share their insights:

  • Firstly, take time to remember those events or times that had a significant impact on you here at Loreto Normanhurst.
    • Ask yourself the question before you go to sleep.
    • Ask the Spirit to remind you when you pray.
  • Secondly, write down your memories and experience of those events.
    • Write it in your journal or somewhere you will be able to keep it.
    • Write down the feelings, the thoughts and the insights. The relationships you have formed with friends and teachers. Who stands out for you and why?
  • Thirdly, reflect on all these aspects of memories and experiences, events, and people, for there is a dialogue between what happened; like the House Choir coming together and what was transforming for you.
  • Fourthly, give a name to that transformation that has happened for you. How have you changed, grown, who has helped you do this? You are claiming for yourself something beautiful and personal that is unique to you.
  • Finally, can you recognise this as a gift for you; have you received something freely offered and it becomes your gift when you gratefully accept it?

The savouring of the Loreto Normanhurst experience is a poignant and important rite of passage for the Year 12 student in her last House time. It is one that leaves a mark on all who hear her story.  Some of these moments are captured in the photo gallery below.


Mr Justin Madigan

Dean of Pastoral Care


 Conversations this week:

Year 12

In Conversation with their tutors

Year 11

In Conversation with Mrs Murdoch and Mr Merchant

Year 10

In Conversation with Ms Donnan

Year 9

In Conversation with Mr Madigan

Year 7/8

Conversations with the Advisors


Upcoming Events – Term 3

Year 11

Leadership Day

Monday 18 September

All Day

Various locations


 Transport for NSW

Transport for NSW has supplied the attached notice in relation to changes to bus stops in Pennant Hills, Thornleigh, Normanhurst and Hornsby.




If your daughter is leaving school to attend an appointment, it is important for our duty of care that she has a note explaining why she is leaving school. If your daughter is absent from school and you have phoned, emailed or sent an SMS, your daughter is still required to bring in a signed note explaining her absence when she returns to school, as per  the NSW Attendance guidelines.

When absent from school

There are two ways to contact the school:

  1. Email:, or

  1. Phone: contact the Student Attendance Line on 9473 7354 – leave a message that includes your daughter’s name, House, Year and a brief explanation for her absence.

Please inform the school of your daughter’s absence before 8:30am.  If your daughter’s absence remains unexplained after 8:45am, an SMS message will be sent to your mobile phone reminding you to contact the school and explain her absence.

On your daughter’s return to school, a signed note by a parent or guardian explaining the absence is required. You can use the perforated slips in the back of your daughter’s Student Handbook. The note needs to be handed to Mrs Andersen or Ms Storey in Student Services within seven days of the absence. The absence note is a legal requirement.

Partial absence

If your daughter arrives to school after 8:20am, she will be required to sign in late using her Student ID Card. A signed note will need to be provided by a parent or guardian to verify the lateness with an explanation. If your daughter is required to leave the school grounds earlier than 3:15pm, she will be required to sign out using her Student ID Card. A permission note, not an email must be provided, clearly stating the reason for the leave and the time of departure. Again, the signature of the parent or guardian is required.

Please contact me on or 9487 3488 if you have any questions.


In Term 4 students will return to school in their Summer Uniform.

 Please support us in relation to school uniform. Your daughter should be wearing her full school uniform to and from school including her hat. One earring in the lower ear lobe that is plain gold or silver studs or sleepers or small white pearls is allowed. No student is permitted to wear excessive makeup, nail polish, necklaces or multiple earrings, sparkly or other shaped earrings. Nails are to be natural and not acrylic or shellac. If your daughter arrives at school with makeup she will be asked to remove it. Repeated issues with jewelry will result in a conversation with her Head of House or myself. Information pertaining to the Uniform Code is found on page 24 of your daughter’s handbook.