Last weekend we had the pleasure of hosting Edmund Rice Camps for an overnight camp at our school. Edmund Rice Camps provide recreational camp programs for children, young people and families experiencing disadvantage. 15 of our Year 10 students were buddied up with a young person and went through a variety of fun activities with them. The camp was led by some of the experienced staff from Edmund Rice Camps including 2013 past student James Ingeri, who helped lead us through the camp. James has been heavily involved with Edmund Rice Camps since leaving school and you can see the great leadership skills this has provided him with. The Year 10 students were equally impressive with the way they looked out for their little buddy and even tucked them into bed at night. The experience was not only a fulfilling one for the young people who came to us, but also for our St. Patrick's students. The young men were great mentors for their little buddies and we were all very impressed with the way they conducted themselves. Well done! If you would like to know more about Edmund Rice Camps you can visit their website - click here »

September marks the first day of Spring, a time when we see the grey of winter cast away and new life spring to action. Spring not only brings a reminder of the true beauty all around us, but also a reminder of the great responsibility we have towards our planet. On September 1, Catholic Earth Care Australia celebrated the first World Day of Prayer for the care of creation. This day was instigated after the release of Pope Francis's encyclical letter Laudato si' on 18 June in Rome. Here he called upon every person living on our planet to care for creation, our common home and take collective action against environmental degradation. For us in Australia the encyclical calls us to embrace a new lifestyle that respects all of creation and calls for our leaders to commit to more effective global agreements.

Some may ask the very relevant question about what exactly is an 'encyclical'? An encyclical is simply an important letter from the Pope that help everyone better understand how to apply the teachings of Sacred Scripture and Catholic Tradition to a particular issue (in this case, the environment). The question at the heart of Laudato si' is "What kind of world do we want to leave to those who come after us, to children who are now growing up?" (paragraph 160).

In his encyclical, Pope Francis tells us about St Francis of Assisi who saw nature as a book in which God speaks to us and invites us to see his infinite beauty and goodness. "Through the greatness and the beauty of creatures one comes to know by analogy their maker" ( Wis 13:5); indeed, "his eternal power and divinity have been made known through his works since the creation of the world" (Rom 1:20). Pope Francis always asked that the Friars garden have a part that remained untouched so wild flowers and herbs could grow so people who saw these could raise their minds to God the creator of such beauty.

Some key actions as part of the Encyclical that we can take are very simple (there are additional links attached to each if you wish to find out more):

We strongly encourage you to sign the Catholic Climate Petition endorsed by Pope Francis click here »

A reminder - Mass is on this Friday morning in the Fr Liam Chapel starting at 8am. We would love to see you there.

Mr Paul Corfield - Acting Assistant Principal - Identity