Mission Report - September 15, 2017
author: Geoff Brodie
Definition of “Touchstone”
1: a fundamental or quintessential part or feature
2: a test or criterion for determining the quality or genuineness of a thing
3 :a black siliceous stone related to flint and formerly used to test the purity of gold and silver by the streak left on the stone when rubbed by the metal
(source: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/touchstone, 13/09/17)
Last Monday the revised Charter and Touchstones of Edmund Rice Education (EREA) was launched at CBC St Kilda. Through prayer, ritual and reflection, representatives of the Southern Region celebrated our identity as a Catholic school in the Edmund Rice Tradition. St Patrick’s College student leaders for 2018, Sam Williams, Tom Clark and Dean O’Brien were fine ambassadors and played an active part in the day.
The Touchstones themselves have not been altered. They remain:
Justice and Solidarity
One new feature of the Charter is the addition of reflective questions for each Touchstone. The process of learning is often experienced as the arrival of a question that we become personally involved in answering. The greater the personal commitment to finding a worthy answer to our questions, the greater the learning. Engagement with these questions will be a path to encountering God, the source of all desires, questions and answers. Some examples of these questions include:
Gospel Spirituality: In what ways do newcomers or visitors to our school tangibly recognise our relationship and actions as being Gospel inspired?
Liberating education: How are the vision and hope for a better world for all expressed and celebrated in our school community?
Inclusive Community: How does our school community open its doors, not only to welcome and support all who come, but also go out and meet those who don’t, constantly seeking ways of inviting everyone to the table?
Justice and Solidarity: What are the benefits and challenges of committing to justice and peace for all?
The re-launched Charter can be found in its entirety at www.erea.edu.au/about-us/the-charter
Finally, I would like to wish our students a peaceful and renewing term break. May all our families have the opportunity to spend time together and enjoy each other’s company outside of the normal busy school routines. May all the Richmond supporters in our community deal successfully with the pressures of September. Please keep our Year 12 students in your prayers as they prepare for their final exams and take their first steps into a new horizon. May the love of God, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, through Christ our Lord, be with us always.