As a faith-centred Catholic community committed to justice it is imperative that we speak up and take action when we see a need, and to be a voice for those who are oppressed and marginalised. At our recent Assembly I spoke about being a voice for the voiceless and that we as Loreto people and Australians need to demonstrate that we are people of mercy. With that in mind, I encouraged our girls to be involved in voluntary letter-writing to our government to ask them to reconsider the legislation regarding refugees and asylum seekers that is currently being discussed.
Today during lunch time the Loreto Normanhurst community took part in this letter writing campaign in protest of this latest proposed legislation – legislation that would permanently impose a ban on refugees’ entry into Australia. Here is a link to the letter written by Sr Libby Rogerson IBVM and sent to all Loreto schools. The IBVM position on this proposed legislation is clear and centred in the Gospel of Jesus. As a Loreto community we have invited staff and students to raise their voices and join in the letter writing campaign, and we invite you to join us. Below is the heart of the message to Prime Minister Turnbull:
“Pope Francis, in a speech last year, commented that: It is violence to erect walls and barriers to block those seeking a place of peace. It is violence to push back those fleeing from inhuman conditions in the hope of a better future. Your proposed legislation is an act of violence against people already persecuted and violated. The legislation is immoral because it can never be right to use people as objects, as deterrents and as means to send messages to people smugglers,” Sr Libby Rogerson IBVM.
Congratulations to Olga Gokmen in Year 10 for her award at the NSW Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Student Achievement – Community Languages Schools. This ceremony was held at University of NSW Sir John Clancy Auditorium with an audience of 900 people. The award recipients were dressed in the traditional costumes of their country and Olga received a 2016 Minister’s Award: Highly Commended – Russian.
Tomorrow, Saturday 5 November, we will host the Loreto Normanhurst Regatta at the Sydney International Regatta Centre in Penrith. Our rowers, supported by the Rowing Parent Support Group and the Sports Department, have been working very hard in preparation of this significant event. We wish them well for our home Regatta this weekend, and the Loreto Kirribilli Regatta on Sunday. I look forward to seeing many students and parents there on the day representing in our blue and gold.
At our Communion Service this morning, we gathered to pray for All Saints (November 1) and All Souls (November 2). We remember all the saints who show us to how to live in faith and trust in God, doing good and bringing God’s love into the world. We also remember those who have died and have continued on their journey to God. We prayed for our loved ones who have passed away and have a book that will remain on the altar in the Chapel in which we can write their names so that, as a community, we can continue pray for them during this month of November.
I look forward to celebrating our Student Council 2016/2017 and their families at tonight’s Principal’s Student Leadership Dinner. This is a wonderful way to acknowledge their achievements and to thank them and wish them well on their leadership journey in the coming year.
Be not afraid
I go before you always
Come follow me, and
I will give you rest.
With prayers of peace and hope,
Ms Barbara Watkins