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Over the past weeks, the Year 12 students have undertaken a Rite of Passage program led by Darren Kearney and the House Deans. This has been a time of listening to others and reflecting about themselves and their own journey through school. They held their final stage of the program throughout today. We will hold our Farewell Assembly next Monday and the students will then leave to prepare for their final exams. Their year will finally finish with the graduation Mass and dinner on Thursday 15 November.

As we farewell our young Men of Action, I would like to share the following reflection.

We are missioned to be Christ’s hands, words and presence in our world today. We are to be Him: feeding the hungry. Those who are hungry for bread, for understanding, for love. We are to be Christ filling the hunger for those who need to be wanted, those who need to be somebody to somebody. You are missioned to be His touch and smile that calms fears and fills the loneliness of being unwanted and unloved. Our words will be His words; encouraging, guiding, supporting, building up, not breaking down. Our ears will be His, listening to those who need to unburden themselves. Our hands and smile and words will be welcome, support and heal and in doing so, Christ will be welcome, support and heal. We are missioned right here, right now, to be Christ in our world.

The message is quite simple. Rather than looking around to find the right people, I must first be the right person! The first actions, and possibly the only actions, that I control are my own. I always look upon this piece of writing as a challenge to myself and what I do to make the world a better place for others. At St Patrick’s we strive to develop young Men of Action who will make a difference to the world. Here is a very practical way to make that happen.

Whilst the final two weeks include many opportunities to farewell the senior students, they are also important weeks of schooling for everyone. It is most important that each young man plans well and studies hard for his exams so that he can achieve his best possible results. Leaving everything to the night before will not help them to achieve to their potential.

We held our final Trimester Awards ceremony last Tuesday. During the assembly, awards were given to students who participated in Basketball, Tennis and Track and Field over the last term.It was also an opportunity to thank Mr Doug Locke for his wonderful service as Director of Sport for the past four years. Doug has decided to step down from the role next year. However, he will remain with us as a member of the PE staff. Mr Daniel Nethery will undertake the role next year.

During this week, two of our long serving staff members informed me of their intention to retire at the end of this year. Ms Nicole Draisey started working at St Patrick’s in 1987 as a teacher of English, Economics and Legal Studies. During her teaching career with us she has also undertaken the roles of Head of Curriculum – English and Head of Daily Organisation. Nicole’s attention to detail and organisational skills were outstanding. I would like to thank her for the great work that she has done over her many years with us and wish her the very best in her retirement.

Mr Ross Dodt has worked at Curlew Park for 12 years. Ross also had two sons attend the College and also chaired the College Sports Support Group for some years. His contribution to our playing fields has been outstanding. Ross has been battling with illness recently and will remain on sick leave until he finishes employment on 16 November. Once again, I would like to wish Ross the very best in his retirement.

We hold our Celebration of Excellence tonight. I am looking forward to congratulating so many young men for their efforts across the year. It is also an opportunity for us to formally thank the entire Year 12 cohort. Their leadership and support for the College across this year has been excellent. The student body will farewell them as a school community during next Monday’s final assembly.

I attended a Principal’s Forum this morning. It was facilitated by the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) and was aimed to update us about the final stages of the new QCE 2020 introduction. The system will finally start next year with our Year 11 cohort (2019). Much work and effort has been put into this and we are looking forward to getting under way. I must also congratulate the QCAA for their planning and roll out of professional development, information sessions and resources over the past few years. It has been excellent and made our job to prepare so much easier.

Please keep Mr Alec Gold and his family in your thoughts and prayers. Alec’s younger sister passed away quite suddenly last night.

Live Jesus in our Hearts!

Mr Chris Mayes – College Principal