“Pope Francis in his encyclical letter Laudato Si tapped into many of our most fundamental crises in the world today, and connects them. Laudato Si'relates the environmental crisis to the social crises we are all experiencing in a globalized world, but he tells us what we already know: we are on a self-destructive path, and we need conversion.” Chad Pecknold

Throughout 2018 our Identity Team wants to hold before our College community some of the ideas that Pope Francis is raising through his letter Laudato Si, his great call to re-think our social structures. Throughout the letter Pope Francis juxtaposes ‘Indifference’ to issues facing our community with a sense of ‘responsibility’ for all God’s creation. His response ultimately comes down to the idea that we need to change our behaviour and most importantly our heart, for the sake of us all. A challenge that must impact all elements of our life.

Each year our immersion to India concludes by visiting the holy city of Puri, a great centre of pilgrimage within the Hindu tradition. Puri is situated on the Bay of Bengal and has great beaches. In some ways it is a real microcosm of Indian life as people from all across the country make the pilgrimage to this ancient site. As well as all of this, Puri is also home to all of the social problems that plague Indian cities – homelessness, poverty, over-crowding, poor health care, etc.

Over the years St Patrick’s has built up a great relationship with the community there, in particular with the Karunalaya Leper Colony. The story of people living with leprosy in India is one of being cast out of the normal community and living out an existence on the edge of society, struggling every day. Karunalaya, its hospital and the Beatrix school were all founded by one man – Fr Marian, a great friend of Fr Liam Horsfall. Fr Marian must have been a truly great man because his memory is held in such high regard by the people of Puri. People remember him as a man who gave people back their dignity, a man who showed respect to those who were the most rejected, a man of great compassion for the suffering of others. In short, a man of Faith, of Learning and of Humility – a Man of Action.

This weekend marks the 100th anniversary of his birth and the community in Puri are celebrating Fr Marian with a series of events over this weekend. Please keep the community in Puri in your thoughts and prayers at this time.

The story of Fr Marian links well to Pope Francis’ call – Fr Marian shows us a life well-lived that was built around that sense of responsibility rather than indifference. In all of this there is the constant reminder to recognise the earth as "our common home” and to keep remembering the relationship we have to our sisters and brothers.

Coming up in Identity –

  • Mass on Wednesday 8:00am in the Fr Liam Chapel, all are welcome to this mass. This coming week is Ash Wednesday and so the Mass on Wednesday would be a great way to start the season of Lent.

ERA for Change will be cooking and selling Pancakes next Tuesday 13 February before school (and possibly at Morning Tea if there are left overs). Pancake / Shrove Tuesday is the last day before the season of Lent, a time when we live simply so others may simply live. During Lent people fast and eat simple food, and so, the tradition developed of eating rich food on Shrove Tuesday to finish up the ingredients that wouldn't be used throughout the 40 days of Lent.

    • Cost - 2 Pancakes for $4 and a choice of toppings
    • Where – Undercroft near the Tuckshop
    • When - Tuesday 13 February, before school
    • All money raised will go to support ERA for Change projects throughout this year.
  • Ash Wednesday liturgies in House Meetings Wednesday 14 February
  • Year 5 retreat – Thursday 22 February in the Christian Brothers Building
  • Year 6 retreat – Friday 2 March in the Christian Brothers Building

Mr Tim Kenny - Dean of Identity