When I think of the women who have influenced me over time, what strikes me about what they have in common is that they have modelled for me the strength of gentleness, the power of being women who raise other women, and the freedom that comes when we are courageous enough to act out of love and not fear. These are women who are, or who have been, part of my personal and professional life and therefore who I have been influenced by directly, and there are those who have influenced me by the witness of their life story, sometimes without us ever having met or even having shared the same time in history.
Next Wednesday, we will have an opportunity to be inspired by four Loreto women who will share the influence their life is having when we welcome back Loreto Normanhurst ex-students as our guest presenters at our Women of Influence evening. The evening will be one of story-telling as we celebrate and listen to these ex-students who have built successful careers from across a range of backgrounds and industries. This event is held in the same week as International Women’s Day and our own Supergirl Week. Supergirl Week is a week where our Loreto Normanhurst community celebrates the power of being a girl, knowing that we are more than capable of anything we set our minds to and it is a week where we always keep in our hearts and minds our responsibility to create a just future for girls everywhere. The event also coincides with Mary Ward Connect and we will have a number of students and staff from Loreto Mandeville Hall, Toorak, and Loreto Ballarat joining us. We hope you will join us as well. Please see more details here.
Congratulations to Tanaya Kumar, Year 12, who will be among 120 Year 11 and 12 students from around Australia attending the 24th National Schools Constitutional Convention (NSCC), being held at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House, Canberra. The aim of the program is to provide senior students with an opportunity to become better informed about how Australia’s Constitution provides a democratic framework and encourages them to take an active interest in the operation of government. The topic of the 2019 Convention is ‘A new constitutional preamble for Australia?’ As a national delegate, Tanaya was selected from over 800 students from government, independent and Catholic schools and we wish her well when she attends the NSCC in mid-March.
Years 5 and 6 enjoyed two days of adventure and friendship-building in the beautiful surrounds of Tea Gardens this week and I congratulate the girls for embracing the variety of experiences camp offers and for continuing to build the life skills of resilience, self-awareness, positive relationships and collaboration. I applaud Years 5 and 6 on their commitment and determination to make the most of this experience.
Our annual Open Day is on next week and it is a wonderful day where we see our community in action. It’s a day where we welcome hundreds of visitors through our gates to experience life at Loreto Normanhurst and to witness firsthand our dynamic and inspiring school. The girls are always so welcoming and engaging and I hope to see many of you join us at what is always a wonderful community day. In advance, I’d like to thank PAL and all parents who have been planning for the day and who will assist the school on the day. I look forward to seeing you next Saturday if you’re coming along.
Congratulations to our students who competed at the NSW All Schools Triathlon Championships during the week. It is such an incredible achievement to ride, swim and run like professionals and achieve personal bests and I congratulate you all.
This afternoon we welcomed back Year 12 who spent the past three days on Retreat. They have embraced the opportunity to enrich their faith, strengthen friendships and remove themselves from the fast-pace of their world. The retreat theme was My Authentic Voice and the girls explored the macro world we live in, our place in this world and how we view and come to know ourselves and others through an Ignatian lens that draws us to find God in all things.
I hope that they found the opportunity to step back from the routine of everyday, to “re-treat” the way they view the world, and to be a time of nourishment and renewal. I pray that they found peace in the stillness. I leave you with this beautiful passage from the Gospel of Mark, where Jesus stills a storm. May it bring stillness and peace into your day.
On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.”
And leaving the crowd behind, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. Other boats were with him.
A great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that the boat was already being swamped.
But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke him up and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?”
He woke up and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!”
Then the wind ceased, and there was a dead calm.
He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith?”
And they were filled with great awe and said to one another,
“Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?”
Ms Marina Ugonotti