Year Nine Evangelisation Day

On Wednesday 18 May, the annual Year 9 evangelisation day was held at Mount St Joseph’s Catholic College Milperra. The theme for the day was “no greater love” as students were presented with Jesus’ challenge to love deeply with respect and self-sacrifice, set within the context of the Year of Mercy – remembering Christ’s love and mercy for us all.

Over 700 Year 9 students and approximately 90 teachers from across the Archdiocese gathered in the new hall at Mount St Joseph. They were welcomed by College Principal, Ms Janine Kenney, and a student from the College gave an acknowledgement of country and the traditional custodians of the land.

Fr Gary Perritt and a team of students from All Saints Catholic College Liverpool led an opening prayer that also included an inspirational drama from the National Evangelisation Team (NET).

Catholic singer song writer from the USA, Steve Angrisano, then began a performance that continued throughout the day. Steve’s performance included humour and games, as well as breaking open the theme through song and story ( Steve also included a gentle invitation for any students who would like to go to reconciliation to take up the opportunity, with priests available in an area out the back of the hall.

Students and staff had the opportunity to meet each other and interact with some light hearted sports activities over morning tea and lunch in the College oval and sports area.

World renowned Catholic evangelist and speaker from the USA, Jason Evert, gave a feature presentation to the students present that linked the theme of “no greater love” to personal choices in terms of relationships and sexuality.

The day concluded with a final prayer, led by students from All Saints Catholic College Liverpool which included an opportunity for students to write on a specially prepared momento card, the messages they would like to remember from the day before receiving a special blessing from Fr Gary.

It is hoped that the students returned to their schools challenged to reflect deeply on their life and faith, inspired by Jesus’ example of “no greater love” and the loving mercy of God.

On the Path to Poland

20160406-divine-mercy-pilgrimage-img1-lgeOn April 3, more than 70 young people from across many Sydney Catholic Secondary Colleges travelled to St Mary’s Cathedral for Divine Mercy Sunday. This was a special pilgrimage opportunity deeply connected to the theme of World Youth Day 2016 and the Year of Mercy.

Students gathered at Hyde Park to have lunch together and hear more about the significance of the Year of Mercy, the Jubilee Doors and Divine Mercy Sunday, before heading to the Cathedral.

They walked through the Jubilee doors and the reflective path of Mercy within the Cathedral before spending time in individual reflection and prayer.

The Divine Mercy celebration then began with the devotional hour, which consisted of the recitation of the Divine Mercy Chaplet led by students from Casimir College; the veneration of the first class relics of Saint Faustina, Blessed Fr Sopocko (Spiritual Director to Saint Faustina), and Saint Pope John Paul II; and the sacrament of reconciliation.

The students formed a guard of honour for the procession of these relics. Saint Faustina and Saint Pope John Paul II are the patron saints of WYD16 and for many students this was a powerful connection to their path to Poland, that lies ahead later this year. The Divine Mercy Sunday Mass was then celebrated, with many of the students involved in the ministries of the Mass.

20160406-divine-mercy-pilgrimage-img-lgeA special thank you to Fr Gary Perritt for being with us to support and minister to us at Mass and the Sacrament of Reconciliation – a very special part of our day together.

Many thanks to Suzanne Austin, the Divine Mercy Sunday Coordinator at St Mary’s Cathedral and to Milad Khalil, a Religious Education teacher from Casimir College for coordinating the involvement of the students.