From the Principal

Acknowledgement of Country

From the Principal

Ms Paddy McEvoy

At this morning’s assembly, we farewelled the Class of 2023.

This year, the Liturgy Committee chose “Blessings” as the theme for our College Masses. At a Mercy Conference in Term 3, I heard Sr Cath Reuter RSM, a Brisbane Sister of Mercy, speak about the true meaning of blessings. Sr Cath’s words have inspired my reflections for the Class of 2023 today.

A blessing is not something that someone else gives to you, it’s not something that happens to you, nor is it a magical incantation that brings God’s favour upon us; rather, a blessing enables us to find the sacredness in the ordinary moments of every day. A blessing doesn’t pretend to erase the complexity or hardship in people’s lives; rather, it acknowledges that something special can exist in amongst those challenges. And our world is facing some unprecedented challenges at present, as we struggle to recognise Australia’s first peoples and witness the conflict playing out in Gaza, the Ukraine and many other parts of the world.

Pope Francis, in Evangelii Gaudium, invites everyone to recognise that we are capable of great tenderness, he calls it mercy, a blessing which never disappoints and is capable of restoring others’ joy.

And the graduating students of 2023 have brought such great joy and tenderness to one another this year. In the moments of struggle, when you wondered if that assignment would ever be finished or whether that performance was good enough, someone found the words of encouragement and support that you needed. Perhaps it was the student sitting next to you, or one of the many parents, siblings, friends or staff members that have joined us for today’s assembly.

And on this World Teacher’s Day, I would like to acknowledge in a special way the teachers and support staff at SAC – primary and secondary teachers, the inclusive education team, counsellors, nurse Sue, office staff, the library team, the IT crew and maintenance – everyone who goes above and beyond to create this environment to enable success for all. This school is incredibly lucky to have such a wonderful staff!

There’s an old Irish saying: “When I count my blessings, I count you twice”. It acknowledges that there are some special people in our lives who always seem to know what we need and how to be truly present for us. I hope that our graduates will take the time to recognise those special people who are blessings in their lives and count them twice!

This moment, today’s graduation celebrations, would not have been possible without each one of you in the Class of 2023. Your life matters and the loving kindness you bring to the world is deeply powerful.

At our Mercy Day Mass, we farewelled a long-serving member of the Maintenance Team, Gunars, with an Irish Blessing from the choir. Today, I offer our graduating students that same blessing:

May the road rise to meet you

May the wind be always at your back

May the sun shine warm upon your face and

May you be held in the palm of God’s hand.

Class of 2023, you have been a blessing on the St Aloysius College community. We will miss you, and we wish you well.

Ms Paddy McEvoy

Congratulations to the Class of 2023!