I have just returned from a week in St George at the termly Toowoomba Catholic Schools Leadership Forum. I am mentally still in the place where a six hour drive enabled you to cross three national borders, so it was a useful reminder to me that I was back in Queensland with its beautiful open spaces. The Forum itself was, as always, a useful and positive experience. It reminds me that school leaders have to put themselves into the positions of their students, and consciously be learners, to ensure that our schools remain strong and successful.
Whilst there, we celebrated with the parishioners at St Patrick's in St George the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. I was really heartened to hear that there was a well-attended Mass in the MacKillop Centre too.
The Feast of the Assumption is so important for our faith. It was pronounced as Dogma in 1950 - the timing is significant. For most of the first half of the twentieth century, the world, especially Europe, had been destroying itself. The catastrophe of trench warfare in the First War, the callous bombing of urban areas in the Second, the perverse ghettoing and mass executions of the camps, the evil of leadership, the removal of millions from their homes and securities, all of this had wounded civilisation. The encyclical emerged to give voice to the people who had sought to preserve humanity through this - and to work with those who suffered through this pain rather than above.
The Church has always been at its most authentic when its members have aligned themselves with those most in need, those who have been robbed of hope. The Dogma of the Assumption is essentially about hope. Hope that we can make the ordinary extraordinary by supporting the person beside is through service, giving, love and charity. It's a message that greatly supports the environment we are building at Mary MacKillop.
I would like to extend a very big thank you to the parents and carers who attended the Parent-Teacher interviews on Tuesday night. Putting it as simply as possible; our role as a College is to support you in educating your child. Events like Tuesday night make that so much easier.
Many of us dressed up on Wednesday for Book Week. It is timely to remind our children that reading is indeed a super power; we are working very hard currently on promoting wider, deeper and more successful reading. As parents, you are key to that! Please do talk to your children about your reading. I would also like to clarify that I was dressed as Robinson Crusoe - NOT a Hobbit.