On Wednesday morning, we received the very sad news that Mr Dan Reid, a former teacher of St Patrick’s College had passed away suddenly. Dan retired from teaching after 25 years of service to our College after the 2017 school year. The education and formation he provided to the many young men over this time has served them well: long after they departed through our College gates. Dan was also a great friend and colleague to many staff who worked alongside him during this time with us. Our community is deeply saddened by Dan’s passing and we extend our...
On Wednesday morning, we received the very sad news that Mr Dan Reid, a former teacher of St Patrick’s College had passed away suddenly. Dan retired from teaching after 25 years of service to our College after the 2017 school year. The education and formation he provided to the many young men over this time has served them well: long after they departed through our College gates. Dan was also a great friend and colleague to many staff who worked alongside him during this time with us. Our community is deeply saddened by Dan’s passing and we extend our thoughts and prayers to Mary, his wife, and their children, Sonny, Bianca and Amber. We have not yet received any news of the funeral arrangements.
Eternal rest grant unto Dan, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him.
May he rest in peace.
This Sunday is the fourth Sunday of Lent. The fourth Sunday of Lent is traditionally called Laetare Sunday. Laetare is a Latin word that means “rejoice.” The Gospel reading, from Luke’s Gospel, is the well- known parable of the prodigal son and describes the reason for our joy: God's great love for us has been revealed in Jesus.
A parable is a simple story used by the author of a Gospel. It is written to illustrate a moral or spiritual lesson as told by Jesus. The parable in this Sunday’s Gospel is unique to the Gospel of Luke. The parable story of the prodigal son invites us to consider our own actions of showing mercy, love and forgiveness to others and consider the depth of God's mercy and love as shown by the father in this story.
In considering our own actions of mercy and forgiveness, this parable invites us to imagine our first response to the audacity of one of our own children asking for their inheritance whilst we are still living ourselves. Whilst indignation would certainly be a justifiable response to such a request, the father in this parable agrees to honour his son's request. He then divided his property among his two sons. What is significant here is the position the father places himself in. Some may well consider him foolish because without property of his own, he must rely upon his sons to provide for his well-being. Others may consider this to be a lesson in trust.
In the parable story, the younger son immediately takes his inheritance and leaves home. The older son remains, continuing to provide for the father and the household. Having been disgraced by the younger son, the father spends time watching the road for the return of the lost son. When he eventually sees his wayward son returning, the father not only welcomes him but also runs out to greet him and then honours him with a party. The older son becomes shocked by this action and reacts angrily to his father whom he has provided for during the absence of the younger son. He has seen his younger brother squander his inheritance in a selfish way and is angry with him.
Yet the father is sad and even confused by the older son's indignation. He believes that they should celebrate because the lost son had returned. The father is filled with gratitude and love for the older son's faithfulness. This love is in no way diminished by the father's rejoicing at the return of the younger son. Yet the older son's jealousy reveals his limited understanding of the depth of his father's love.
As parents, we understand the meaning of unconditional love with our own children. This Gospel parable explains that so well. Unconditional love knows no depths, it forgives on all occasions. There are possibly two considerations for each of us from this story. Firstly, what are the depths for our own forgiveness and mercy for others around us when we feel wronged? Secondly, are there times that we may appear like the older son, where we appear to question the forgiveness and mercy shown by others without really knowing why it has happened?
The last week of the term is traditionally a time for assessment to be completed. Our Year 12 students are on a block exam program whereby they only attend school to complete exams. The rest of the College will attend school as normal and will complete their exams during the normal course of the day. This is the first time that this has occurred for Year 11 students. This is because of the new senior schooling system that began with their year level this year. I urge all parents to please work with each young man to make sure that he is best prepared to complete whatever assessments he may have over the course of this week.
Next Friday, we will finish the term with our annual Shore 2 Gate walk. This is a very relaxing and enjoyable way to finish the term. More importantly, it is also a great opportunity for our young men to raise money to assist others who are less fortunate. Our Catholic tradition and social teachings calls us to “raise alms” on occasions to support those that need assistance. Whilst we also have many service programs that offer our young men the opportunity to assist with their actions, financial support can also be very significant to some of the organisations that we assist. This year the money raised for “alms” will go to SANDBAG, Edmund Rice Camps and some of the organisations within immersion destinations in Timor Leste and India. We are hoping that every student will raise $50. So far, we are well short of this target, but I am sure that this will change over the course of next week. As there are no school sporting commitments over this weekend, it will be an ideal time for our young men to collect some donations.
Our AIC sporting fixtures for the first term finished last weekend. The second term is usually one of the busiest with sport as we have many teams in Rugby and Football. Our Cross-Country team also has their championships in this term as well. This year, the AIC Championships will be held at Curlew Park for the first time. We are looking forward to hosting this significant event.
I will forward my usual first term letter to all families during the Easter break to let you know of any reminders and other important news that might be significant for the second term.
Live Jesus in our Hearts!