Mission Report – April 14, 2016

April 13, 2016

Welcome to Term Two. May it be a time of Easter joy and growth for us all.

This term has started with a very positive experience. Whilst on duty in the canteen area I enjoyed a conversation with one of our generous parents who gives of their time to serve our students. This parent told me of the impact the Faith in Action students had whilst delivering Easter Eggs to hospital patients at the end of last term. As you know, our annual Easter Egg drive occurs at the end of Term One, where we call upon all students to donate Easter Eggs that will be distributed to Ballarat’s hospitals and care facilities. It even involves some students wearing rabbit costumes, though no student was named Harvey.- This parent was very keen for me to pass onto the students the positive and joyful impact this visit had on her daughter who was in hospital for surgery. The small donation made by many of our students, when collected and distributed by our engaged and creative Faith in Action students, resulted not only in a significant donation in terms of quantity, but a transformation in the lives of individuals facing life’s challenges.

The standard set by Christ for our service to each other is very high.

And if anyone wants-¦ your coat, give your cloak as well; and if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile. (Matt 5:40-41)

The call to travel that extra mile is literally taken up by our annual Walkathon that occurs every Edmund Rice Day, May 5th. Our students are called to be people who freely raise money for those facing significant challenges in their life. The extra mile in this case does not refer to the actual walk on the day, but rather to the effort of seeking donations in the weeks leading up to Edmund Rice Day. This call to be the type of person who willingly offers a couple of hours of their time to wander from door to door, offering witness to those in need, and inviting members of our wider community to be part of an action that offers real support for those in need, is at the heart of a Catholic school in the Edmund Rice Tradition.

The conversation at the canteen is a reminder of the reality of our effort to serve and our commitment to put our faith into action. It is our living of the Easter message. On the Cross Jesus transformed darkness into light by loving without limit, even if this meant suffering. Our students are invited to put aside any inconvenience or perceived embarrassment that comes from asking for donations, and walk that extra mile, and in doing so, acknowledge the dignity of all in our community. May we all be encouraged, in every way, to make the most of any opportunity to change the world of others, and in the process be transformed ourselves in the image of our loving God.