Steve Bryan's Newsletter - 17th May 2019

May 17, 2019

 

Dear Parents, Caregivers, and Whānau,

 

We were fortunate to attend occasions recently where Brother Guy Consolmagno SJ, Director of the Vatican Observatory was the guest speaker. His descriptions of the mutuality of religious faith and the science of astronomy were compelling; our students and staff have shared their experiences with peers and colleagues at assemblies and meetings back at school, including this one from Brother Guy,

‘Knowledge is an island. The more you know, the bigger the island. But the bigger the island, the longer the coastline, which is the boundary between what you do know and what you don’t know. If you find someone who thinks they know everything, it’s because their island is really tiny’

Check out these links for more of Brother Guy’s ‘pearls’ https://cathnews.co.nz/2019/05/06/consolmagno-faith-science/  

https://www.stuff.co.nz/science/112267213/southern-skies-and-mt-john-experience-wow-vatican-astronomer

 

The O’Shea Shield competition hosted by St Peter’s College last weekend in Palmerston North was a wonderful weekend of sharing and celebrating the faith of 17 Catholic colleges of the Wellington Archdiocese, and the tremendous talents of our students. The theme of the weekend was, ‘On This Rock’, so apt for St Peter’s Colleges and was laced through the scripture themes in Religious Drama and evident around the school over the weekend. Our team performed very creditably winning the Mercy Cup for Religious Questions; congratulations to our team of Ysabelle Aizpuru, Leigh Masmela, and Sapna Vyas, coached so expertly by Ms Deirdre Walsh, and being close to silverware in other sections (the great debates of O’Shea weekend are always about the results that didn’t go our way!)

We wish to congratulate our brother school, St Patrick’s College for winning this year’s O’Shea Shield; they were deserving and admirable winners.

 

The Ministry of Education announced an NCEA Change Package this week. This is in response to extensive consultation over recent months into our secondary school qualification system. Implemented over the coming years it will have significant impact on your children’s qualification pathway. We will share our understandings of what these changes mean in times ahead but in the meantime here is the package, http://www.conversation.education.govt.nz/assets/Uploads/NCEA-Change-Package-2019-Web.pdf

School will be disrupted on Wednesday 29 May when teachers take industrial action in support of their claims. While there will not be normal classes that day, school will remain open for supervised study. Please phone or email the office in advance, so we know who to account for on that day.

The term of the current Board of Trustees has come to a close and at last night’s final meeting Mrs Michele Smith, Mr Peter Kemp, and Mr Larry Reese were acknowledged for their great service to our school. I have really appreciated their support and specific areas of expertise which have contributed significantly to the strategic planning, finance, property and IT sectors of the college. They have been most generous trustees. So here’s the opportunity you’ve been waiting for - get yourself nominated for the new Board of Trustees and make a difference for your daughter’s learning and development. Nomination forms are available at, www.boardelections.nz

Another link here for the future and how our students might travel to Kilbirnie and

St Catherine’s for their school day,

https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/112760591/live-new-multibillion-dollar-plan-for-wellington-transport

 

Listening to National Radio on my daily commute I have been interested in our Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s leadership of ‘Voices for Action’ at the Paris conference where tech companies and world leaders have signed up to regulate extremist online content. A media commentator made the point that this is all well and good but the most important regulations must happen with each individual making habits of choice for wholesome online activity.

So a prayer for discernment, where we can make our own personal difference,

 

E te Atua atawhai - God of Mercy

You have a plan for each one of us,

You hold out to us a future full of hope.

 

Give us the wisdom of Your Spirit

So that we can see the shape of Your plan as we discern what is life giving,

empowering and sustainable in our community

 

Give us the freedom of Your Spirit,

So that we radiate for others the compassion and mercy of you leaning

down into the frailty of life and the daily realities of our services for others.

 

Amine (Sisters of Mercy Ministries NZ Trust)

 

Regards and God’s blessings

Steve Bryan

Principal

 

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