The end of a school year shifts our focus to the spiritual preparation for Christmas and on the coming of Our Lord.
Christmas is a great time in the life of children but also for the child in all of us. The fervour of expectation builds over the season, peaking in the celebration of Christmas Day. For many families the sharing of gifts and a meal are central to the ongoing ritual and tradition which is remembered as some of the best times in their lives. Growing up for me at this time was one of joy as it brought my large extended family together. We shared stories, ate a lot of food and played cricket – all day. Perhaps the highlight was going to the evening vigil Christmas Mass together. It was always packed with people, standing room only, and the energy and excitement were palpable. Today, my wife and I have continued the same tradition with our own family.
Within our Catholic tradition, Christmas signifies the coming of our saviour Jesus Christ. This week in our liturgical year we welcome the season of Advent. Advent is a season observed as a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas. This season invites all Christians to ponder the great mystery of our faith; the incarnation of our Lord taking on humanity born to the Virgin Mary, in order to ultimately save us. His message of faith, love and hope that permeated his ministry underpins the very nature of our Christianity. Christmas gives us license to reflect on these ideals and how they permeate our own lives and the relationships we form.
At Newman College our mission is to bring Christ into our lives by how we choose to live our lives and by the actions that define us. This week we celebrated our Primary Christmas Celebration evening which exemplified the family spirit that infiltrates our Marist School. The joy of Christmas radiated through the songs the students sang and in the absolute excitement of families in the crowd. We also have 14 Year 11 students and three staff in the Philippines walking in solidarity with some of the most marginalised children in the world. Yet, like us, these children are also preparing for Christmas and the expectation and hope it brings.
I hope that our families take time to be together to grow their own tradition at Christmas. I encourage you to go to your local Church as a family and celebrate the birth of Christ and ponder not only the mystery of his incarnation, but the impact he can have on our lives.
St Joseph’s International School Kuching Malaysia
Thank you to our visiting teachers from our Marist sister school in Kuching Malaysia who spent a week working in our Secondary school. They have been instrumental in our new partnership we have formed to exchange ideas in professional practice and prepare the ground work for a reciprocal student immersion into the future.
Marist Cricket Carnival
The Marist Cricket Carnival commences next Tuesday 4 December. Many thanks to the organising committee for the preparation that has gone into this event. A special thank you to those families who will billet our visiting cricketers. Your volunteering has enabled this carnival to go ahead and for this we are most grateful.
Thank you to the staff who will conclude their time in our community at the end of the year. They are to be commended for their tireless efforts and commitment to our young people. We wish them the very best in the next part of their journey.
Wishing all families a happy and holy Christmas.