Although parts of the east coast have had some rain recently, it looks like we are heading into an extremely warm and very dry summer. Therefore, the drought will be an ongoing issue for us as Australians and as a Loreto Normanhurst community, as many of our boarders are from the country and the boarding school is a central part of our community. However, I am very happy to report that the drought relief fundraising efforts by the school have been amazing and at this point we, as a community, have raised more than $11,000. Our efforts are not over yet as the Primary School holds their Frangipani Fair today (formerly the Kidpreneur program), passing on all monies raised to the ‘Buy a Bale’ Campaign. Thank you to all students, parents and staff who have contributed so far.
Year 11 come to the end of their examinations this week and they have traversed this time well. They return to class next week to receive valuable feedback on their examinations and to lead the Year 12 farewells at the end of the week. In the last week of this term they will attend their Year 11 Retreat which is a very significant time for them. Please keep Year 11 in your prayers as they transition as the new leaders of the school.
Next week will be the final week for the Class of 2018. They are a fine group of young women. This week I spoke to the Year 12 group about their legacy and how they might leave behind them “something on which others may build”, as Mother Gonzaga Barry told us long ago. As a school we celebrate, thank, gift, bless and farewell the students on Thursday and Friday of next week. All of these rites of passage are good and necessary. This is when, as students of a school that has nurtured and grown them with love and care and supported them through the great times and the challenges, they too should give thanks and celebrate their school. As we say, ‘Loreto girls are thank you girls’. This is the time when a gentle word of thanks goes a long way to all the people who have watched them grow into such amazing young women. The bus driver, the lollypop person on Normanhurst Road, the boarding staff, the maintenance staff and all the teaching staff, not only the teachers they have had for Year 12. Together, all these people, both at Loreto and in the wider community, and in partnership with parents, have brought these fine young women to where they are today. We give thanks for them and know that as Loreto women, they will do the same.
This weekend many students in hockey and netball will play their last game for Loreto Normanhurst. We thank them for their commitment to sport. We also thank their parents for their commitment to supporting their daughters and Loreto sport. Long may the girls continue to play sport beyond school and contribute to sport across Sydney and further afield as a player and leader.
Good luck to all students in the finals and grand finals this weekend. No matter the result, you have done well and we congratulate you.
This week we had the pleasure of hosting Ms Miriam Pellicano from the House of Welcome, the organisation we supported through Loreto Day this year. Our support and fundraising on our school feast day meant that we were able to donate $50K to the House of Welcome who support refugees and asylum seekers. Our assistance means that in a time when government funds have been drastically cut to the House of Welcome and organisations like them, we have been able to keep their much needed programs going. In real terms, this means 100 care packs a week for those families in need. It means the employment of a doctor once a week to see those people who cannot gain a Medicare card. It means the education programs they offer to support refugees and asylum seekers gain employment can continue, and that many more programs will continue now to operate with this much needed injection of funds. We thank the House of Welcome for this vital work and we congratulate Year 11 on their efforts to raise our awareness of this cause. We also thank the Loreto Normanhurst community for getting behind this much needed work in the wider community.
He put his arms around them,
laid his hands on them
and gave them his blessing.
With prayers of peace and hope,
Ms Barbara Watkins