Spirituality Evening

An invitation to a Spirituality Evening  to commemorate International Women’s Day 2016

Join us for a screening of  ‘He Named Me Malala’  followed by a panel discussion with special guests.

Parents, students, ex-students and friends of Loreto, you are warmly invited to join us for the first Spirituality Evening for 2016.



Pope Francis has declared this year the Holy Year of Mercy. His call for mercy is fitting. We need messages of grace, peace and joy in a time where images of the horrific and the inexplicable seem all too familiar. Pausing to reflect on mercy, and our invitation to be people who grant mercy to others, takes us into the chaos and messiness of others’ lives, those both far and near. The Pope’s announcement calls us, as faithful people, to stand with all people. Indeed, this is at the heart of the mission of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In September 2014, the Sisters of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary worldwide, met in Loyola Spain for their General Congregation. Discerning the way forward, they issued 5 ‘Calls’.

‘Call 5’ is to:

Create the oneness that moves across boundaries

This Call directs the lives and actions of all who are part of the IBVM mission.

On International Women’s Day Loreto Normanhurst stands with all women. As an institution dedicated to the empowerment and education of young women we have decided to champion the voice of Malala Yousafzai. Recognising the absolute privilege enjoyed by our young women who freely pursue their hopes and dreams each day we are responding to the Pope’s call for mercy by hosting a screening followed by a panel discussion that puts the messiness of other people’s lives firmly in our sights.



He Named Me Malala is a powerful documentary exploring both the well-publicised attack on Malala Yousafzai by the Taliban and her subsequent agitation for women’s education. It is also a thought-provoking examination of her status as a refugee in the United Kingdom and as such speaks to the current refugee crisis faced by hundreds of thousands of refugees worldwide.

As we, everyday people are called to do God’s merciful work this year we might draw inspiration from the documentary’s powerful and humanizing story – while Malala’s story is extraordinary she is an ordinary girl with ordinary hopes, fears and desires. The documentary highlights the inspirational balance between her age and wisdom by juxtaposing aspects of her everyday life with her tireless advocacy for women’s rights and women’s education. The fact that one child could spark national and even international debate is a message we ought to hear.

Date Tuesday, 8 March
Time 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Venue Refreshments in the Gonzaga Barry Centre Undercroft, followed by the movie screening in the Curran Theatre  at  Loreto Normanhurst.
RSVP Click here to RSVP

Ms Kerry McCullough kkmccullough@loretonh.nsw.edu.au

Mrs Alicia Maunsell amaunsell@loretonh.nsw.edu.au

The Panel:

Panel discussion to be chaired by Shivani Reddy, Loreto Normanhurst Communications Captain.


– A Loreto Sister, Sr Libby recently completed her role as Executive Officer of Mary Ward International Australia – the Loreto Sisters’ aid, development and volunteer organisation. From 1999 – 2009 Sr Libby was Coordinator of Social Justice and Director of Caritas in the Diocese of Parramatta. During this period she had considerable involvement in work with refugees and asylum seekers and was one of the founders of the House of Welcome, providing support, referral and emergency accommodation for refugees and asylum seekers. Libby chaired the Board of the House of Welcome for some years. Libby is a member of the CLRI NSW Justice Committee, member of St Francis Social Services Board, Deputy Chair Loreto Normanhurst School Council, Board member of CentaCare (Wilcannia-Forbes) and a member of the Loreto Sisters Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Committee.


– Professor Frank Brennan is a Jesuit priest, professor of law at Australian Catholic University and Adjunct Professor at the Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, the Australian National University College of Law and the National Centre for Indigenous Studies. He is the National Director of Human Rights and Social Justice for Jesuit Social Services, and superior of the Jesuit community at Xavier House in Canberra.An Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for services to Aboriginal Australians, particularly as an advocate in the areas of law, social justice and reconciliation, he was the recipient of the Migration Institute of Australia’s 2013 Distinguished Service to Immigration Award and of the 2015 Eureka Democracy Award in recognition of his endeavours which have contributed to strengthening democratic traditions in Australia. The National Trust has classified him as a Living National Treasure. In 2009, he chaired the Australian National Human Rights Consultation Committee. Frank serves on the board of the National Apology Foundation and on the Advisory Council of the Global Foundation.


– Between 1991 to 1995, Kate, a Loreto Normanhurst ex-student, was a solicitor with Allen Allen & Hemsley. She worked in the Commercial Litigation and Corporate groups. Between 1995 and 1998, Kate was a Senior Legal Officer with the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission. Kate has taught human rights/civil liberties and international law at the University of Technology (Sydney) and the University of Sydney, as well as a number of international programs. She has been a Visiting Fellow at the University of Western Sydney. Since 2005 she has lectured in Monash University’s Masters of Human Rights Law program, where she is a Senior Fellow and a member of the Postgraduate Advisory Committee. Kate is co-founder and was for many years President of Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR).


– Ambreen is originally from Pakistan where she completed a Bachelor of Science and a Masters in International Relations. In 2004 Ambreen’s family were targeted by her husband’s uncle who had joined the Taliban. Her husband, Hikmat, was shot in the chest multiple times while taking his daughter, then a toddler, to preschool. In 2008 he was targeted again. After the third shooting in 2009 Hikmat and Ambreen made the difficult decision to relocate their family to Australia. Both found their qualifications were not formally recognised in Australia and have worked hard to rebuild their lives in a foreign country. Ambreen has not only become an active and socially engaged member of the community but has completed various Australian qualifications in order to reconnect with her work in the education sector. In 2014 she commenced work at Loreto Normanhurst through the Work and Welcome program and undertook a Diploma in Library and Information Services. Ambreen and her family are now Australian citizens and Ambreen is currently employed in the Loreto Normanhurst Learning Resource Centre. The family returns home to their beloved Pakistan when they can.


– Rachel is the Loreto Normanhurst Social Justice Captain. She has ably lead the school by introducing many initiatives that have inspired her peers to use their voices for good. In 2015 she championed a letter writing campaign that encouraged all students to speak out against the inhumane treatment of asylum seekers by writing to their local members of parliament. In her advocacy for asylum seekers she has worked extensively with Sr Libby Rogerson and Mary Ward International Australia. Across her time at Loreto Rachel has also been an integral part of the Loreto Green Team and JPIC and in 2014 she joined the sustainability committee as a student representative. She is also active in her local community and is currently involved in Lions Youth of the Year program.