Newman Newbies: From the Deputy Principal Mission and Catholic Identity

Daniel Lynch, Deputy Principal Mission and Catholic Identity


‘Trusting in God is both the most difficult and the easiest thing we are invited to do. It is the most difficult, because we always want to be in control, driven, in part, by the expectations of others, or ourselves. We are created by God. We are made in God’s image’ – Sean Cullen

Lent is a precious time of retreat for Catholics across the world. We know that Lent is a time of renewal in faith, hope and love so that we can enter more fully into the celebration of the Sacred Triduum of Jesus’ last supper, his suffering and death on the cross, and his glorious resurrection. As a PK-12 College community, our recognition of Shrove Tuesday, and the commencement of our Lenten journey on Ash Wednesday with liturgies across our three campuses invited each of us to walk with one another during this time of renewal and refocus.

Project Compassion

Project Compassion brings thousands of Australians together in solidarity with the world’s poor to help end poverty, promote justice and uphold dignity. This year’s Project Compassion theme is: GIVE LENT 100%. Each week of Lent, Caritas profiles a person who is involved in a Caritas project and always gives 100%. Click here to view these stories. Throughout Term 1, a number of activities have taken place across the three campuses to raise the College target of $20,000

Shrove Tuesday

Year 10 students sold pancakes on both the Marcellin and Lavalla Campuses on Shrove Tuesday (5 March) in support of Project Compassion. Students at the Marian campus also received pancakes, with the Kindy and Pre Primary students making theirs with the help of their teachers. A total of $816.85 was raised across the three campuses.

Years 7-12 Caritas Fast

Students were invited to participate in the Caritas Fast held on Wednesday 13 March. Over 150 students participated in the Fast which saw them forgo their usual meals throughout the school day. The students were given barley sugars at recess and a handful of cold, cooked rice at lunch and a muffin at the end of the day. This small amount of food aimed at helping students appreciate how little some people in our world have to eat. It was a fantastic day which helped raise $3630.95 for Project Compassion.

Pre Primary – Year 2 Walk for Water

On Tuesday 12 March, students on the Marian Campus took part in the Walk for Water initiative to help them understand how some children around the world walk for many kilometres just to get water each day. Students watched the story of Thandolwayo from Vietnam who risks her life each day just to bring water back for her family? Click here to hear her story.

PK-12 Family Mass

This is the third year that this important whole-of-College annual event has been celebrated. The evening gave families and staff the opportunity to come together as an intentional Catholic-Marist community, and to share the Eucharist together as we begin this year as a united community. The evening was also an opportunity for the College to commission the Year 6 and Year 12 student leaders for 2019.

Year 10 Damascus Day

The Newman College Ministry Plan seeks to invite all students into an experience of prayer and ongoing Christian discipleship. Across Years 3–10, all students are afforded an opportunity to experience an annual retreat day. The Year 10 Damascus Day, run by the Perth-based Youth Mission Team, was an opportunity provided to all students in Year 10 to stop, withdraw and reflect on the opportunities and abundance they are called into on their own personal journey, and the collective journey of the cohort.

Year 12 Retreat

During this important time of quiet reflection and time away from the usual school routines whilst on Retreat, the Year 12 students had an opportunity to seriously reflect upon their lives. Several aspects of personal growth and awareness were considered such as self-esteem, relationships and responsibilities, as well as developing a broader sense of community. While on Retreat students had opportunities to explore and deepen their spirituality and faith experiences through small group sharing, reflective prayer and celebrating the Eucharist.

Student Reflections

“This retreat has been a valuable experience to me as you get to hang out more with people you didn’t realise you would get along with so much, while still having the time to be with your mates too”.

“I came to Year 12 Retreat with the intention of just relaxing for a few days and to get away from schoolwork, but I ended up being able to really open up and get so much more out of it than I expected”.

“Year 12 Retreat encouraged me to get out of my comfort zone and get a richer understanding of my year group, it was an amazing experience”.

Year 11 Philippines Immersion – 2018

On Saturday 24 November, 16 Year 11 students and 3 accompanying staff members embarked on the 2018 Year 11 Philippines Immersion. The Philippines Immersion is another practical way in which our Marist communities at Newman College and sister school St Joseph’s School seek to build opportunities for solidarity, community engagement, relationships and connections between Western Australia and the Philippines. Since returning, these students have presented their experience of the Immersion to the PK-12 Newman College staff, and at the first Principal’s Assembly.

Please click here to view a video reflection prepared by the students.

Please click here to view and listen to an original poem, prepared by the students, with accompanying images to reflect on the experiences of the immersion.

As the year continues, our students will have a range of advocacy opportunities to promote justice and share their insights to grow a wider awareness among our College community.

Weekly Thursday Morning Community Mass

All parents, guardians and families across our PK-12 College are invited to attend the weekly Thursday morning Mass celebrated by Fr Mark Baumgarten. Our weekly Newman College Community Mass is an important way that we as a Catholic community seek to nourish and live-out our faith in community with one another. Click here to see a short video of the choir performing.