Celebrating the Feast Day of St Mary of the Cross MacKillop

Feature Articles Monday, 08 Aug 2022

As a growing P-12 College, we have been deepening our understanding of what it means to walk in the footsteps of St Mary MacKillop. We have been encouraging all students throughout the College to reflect on her example and think of ways that they can model partnership, perseverance, passion, search for possibilities, support others through practical action and find resolve and peace through prayer. The world of children today is dominated by other noises and priorities and we have to work hard to show them the worth of a focus on doing things that support the person beside them.

St Mary's example presents a strong challenge to me personally. In a challenging time, she walked the talk. As a leader, she was resolute in supporting others, even if it meant weakening her own position. She had many moments of strength but genuine heartache too. I cannot imagine the pain she would have felt during the period of her excommunication, when she must have felt so many forces combined against her.

We still have many of her letters, which show a correspondence with her fellow nuns based in compassion, warmth and a deep and shared faith. In our busy lives, we find it too easy to forget to check in - but she did so continuously and selflessly. She had complete focus on getting recognition from the Pope for her order which showed vision and strength. His decision to support the Sisters of St Joseph gave our country a wonderful gift - the thousands of nuns who established schools all over - but particularly in the regions.

Today, her charism stays alive with us and, we hope, maintains a desire to walk alongside the vulnerable, the weak and the needy. We carry her message today.

Chris Gabbett
College Principal