The month of November is an important month in the Catholic calendar as we celebrate, pray and commemorate All Saints Day and All Souls Day. Pope Francis frequently speaks about All Saints’ Day and how Catholics should “let themselves be encouraged by the saints” as they did not live lives by half measures rather sought opportuniti
es to assist those in need. Our liturgical theme this year has been about being a witness of God’s good deeds for others. Like the saints, we too must be encouraged to seek these opportunities to support those in need in our community. Our Social Justice program is a good means to be able to fulfil this encouragement by Pope Francis.
All Souls’ Day is also an important day as the Christian community remembers all the faithful departed especially those who were close to us. The fa ithful departed are constant in our prayers throughout the year but are especially commemorated on this day. I pray that all our families were able to spend some reflective time in remembrance of those who are no longer with us especially those who have departed this world in 2019.
The end of November marks the end of the current liturgical calendar. It also indicates and marks the beginning of Advent as a lead into Christmas. It begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas Day, which is the Sunday nearest November 30, and ends on Christmas Eve (Dec 24). The season of Advent is a time for hope and anticipation.
The word Advent means “coming” or “arrival.” The focus of the entire season is the celebration of the birth of Jesus the Christ in his First Advent, and the anticipation of the return of Christ the King in his Second Advent. It is celebrating a truth about God, the revelation of God in Christ whereby all of creation might be reconciled to God. Advent also symbolizes the spiritual journey of individuals and a congregation, as they affirm that Christ has come, that He is present in the world today, and that He will come again in power.
Colours are extremely symbolic during this Advent period. The purple colour associated with Advent is also the colour of penance. The faithful should fast during the first two weeks in particular and receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
The colour of the Third Sunday of Advent is rose. This colour symbolizes joy and represents the happiness we will experience when Jesus comes again.
The Third Sunday is a day of anticipatory celebration. It is formerly called “Gaudete” Sunday; Gaudete means “rejoice” in Latin.
Finally, Sundays during Advent, just as during Lent, should not be given to fasting, but instead to celebration because we celebrate the resurrection of Our Lord every Sunday. It is important to remember, however, there are no particular rules for how the laity should observe Advent.
During this Advent season I hope and pray that you and your family find an opportunity to celebrate and rejoice in the birth of our saviour, Jesus Christ.
As I reflect upon the Christmas period, I am always encouraged by the joy and happiness of the season. However, it also reminds me that this is not always a reality for all our community especially the lonely, the marginalised, the poor, the homeless. I do hope that through our prayers and love, we receive a little of the blessings of Christmas. May we all receive the greatest gift this Christmas, the gift of Christ’s love for all of us.
I BELIEVE that Christmas is more than a time for parties and ornaments; it is a time for remembering Christ and the incarnation of God’s love in human flesh.
I BELIEVE there are gifts more important than the ones under the Christmas tree, the things we teach our children, the way we share ourselves with friends, and the industry with which we set about reshaping the world in our time.
I BELIEVE that the finest carols are often sung by the poorest voices; from hearts made warm by the wonder of the season.
I BELIEVE in the angel’s message that we should not be afraid—that the Child of Bethlehem is able to overcome all anxieties and insecurities.
I BELIEVE in prayer and quietness as a way of appropriating Christmas—that if I wait in silence I will experience the presence of the one born in the manger, for he
lives today as surely as he lived then.
I BELIEVE in going away from Christmas as the wise men went: “another way.” I want to be different when these days are past—more centred, more thoughtful, more caring.
And I believe God will help me. Amen
As a College, I am proud of our Movember campaign that addresses Men’s health and our Fight against Domestic Violence especially against women. Our College Prefects have been instrumental in the promotion of this campaign and have been outstanding in making the College aware of both elements. Their proactive nature was evident at the number of St Dominic’s students and families that participated in the Walk against Domestic Violence on Sunday 24th November and the amount raised for Men’s health. Be my witnesses has never been so evident than in this campaign. Congratulations to all our community.
November is filled with numerous events, not just religious but also community events. As we paused to commemorate all those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the defence of this great country, I would like to thank Mr Rawding, for leading our commemoration of Remembrance Day. The sounding of the reveille (trumpet in the morning) across the College speakers provided a great setting for all the College as we reflected on those who have fallen and the significance of the day. The Beatitudes, where Jesus makes reference to “Blessed are the Peacemakers; for they shall be called God’s children” always reminds me of those who serve our community for the sake of peace. A responsibility that has been bestowed on all of us. As we reflect on the significance of the day, let us always remind ourselves of the role we currently play in being the peacemakers of our world, today and for future generations.
Our 2020 College Captain leads the way. Congratulations to Cooper Hill for being the recipient of the most prestigious Victor Chang Cardiac Research School Science Award. Cooper is currently studying Physics and Chemistry. His results have been outstanding in both these courses. Cooper also received a commendation for his involvement in the 2019/20 Lions Youth of the Year Program. Cooper was placed first in the Public Speaking component of the program. A great achievement that I hope leads to even greater opportunities.
Another fantastic evening. The annual Father and Sons Bowls night at the Kingswood Sports Club was a great opportunity for Father’s and their sons to spend some quality time together. The College also welcomed some of the new 2020 Y7 students and their fathers. It was a beautiful evening with well over 50 bowlers enjoying the bowling. Thank you to Mrs Fiona Campbell and Mr Ray Campbell (Class of 1960) for organising and your continued support of this excellent community gathering.
The Year 7 2017 Orientation Day was an outstanding success with all the 2020 students enjoying their day at the College. The day was filled with a variety of learning activities as well as an opportunity to be involved in some sport activities. The students also were engaged in two testing tools that will provide better information to assist the College identify areas of development in individual learning for each student. I would like to congratulate our newly elected College Prefects and members of our SRC who supported the boys throughout the day. One of the highlights for me was the singing of the College War Cry by the students at the end of the day. It was amazing. We look forward to formally welcoming the students in 2020.
Over the past three weeks, Year 10 have had a roll-a-coaster of emotions. With the stress of the assessment period over, the joy of the assessments completed, the disappointment of farewelling some of their colleagues, the emptiness of a cancelled camp, the fun of attending Raging Waters and the excitement of finishing their junior years, our students finished exceptionally well. Farewelling our students at the Commissioning liturgy is always a difficult moment for me, as I know many young men are now journeying into the next phase of their lives. Regardless of where this journey takes them, they will always remain members of our College. A Dommies boy. Farewell and good luck to all our departing students. To all ours sons returning, rest well and enjoy your break as 2020 will bring new challenges and opportunities as you continue your journey at St Dominic’s College.
The Y12 Formal was a great opportunity for students and staff to reflect on the past (in particular the last two years) and enjoy an evening of dancing and conversation about the future. A great night was had by all. Thank you to Ms Shankar for her organisation of this wonderful evening and for all the staff who attending in support of our new alumni group.
Could parents please attend to overdue school fees as soon as possible. Whilst many families have contacted the College Fees Office, a number of families are yet to do so. There are numerous ways in which you can pay you fees and these have been highlighted in previous newsletters and also appear on the back of your invoices. Families who are having some difficulties with their school fees can simple contact the College to discuss any financial problems that may have arisen and make arrangements that they can commit to. The College has a very clear process to follow for any families who may be encountering some financial hardship. I ask that you contact either Ms Powell or myself to discuss your fees should you be unable to finalise your account.
Let Your Light Shine
Mr M. Ronchetti