Principal's Blog - 10 August 2017

08 Aug 2017

Dear members of the Marcellin College family,

Each fortnight our College holds school tours which I always suggest to our visitors provides a warts and all view of our College - hopefully not too many warts! At the commencement of these tours I speak with our prospective families in the Lecture Theatre where I explain the broad identity and philosophy of our great school. I tell them that there is one reason why Marcellin College exists. One reason why the Marist Brothers and we Marists of today have invested so much of our blood, sweat and tears into this place over the last 67 years; to make Jesus known and loved. This is a pretty radical statement considering the secular community in which we live. Now I am sure at that moment in the presentation there may be some in the audience who decide then and there that this may not be the place for their son. The accent on developing young men with an understanding of the Christian Faith and our Catholic, Marist identity may not be the emphasis they were looking for.

Of course we are also a place of education where we devote our energies to educating young men in spirit, mind and body. Supporting them so they may reach their full potential and grow to become fine young men who will take their place in the world as what Saint Marcellin Champagnat would describe as Good Christians and Good Citizens.

If we are to truly live this ideal as a school community then all those who call Marcellin their place of work must not only be fully committed to this ethos but also well trained, educated and formed as Catholic Marist educators. How do we achieve this? Some of our staff are engaged in formal study in postgraduate theology and Religious Education courses. Many more of our staff participate in the Marist Mission and Life team formation programs which operate throughout the year. Each Monday morning our staff gather in the Champagnat Chapel where each staff member has a turn at leading our community in prayer to commence our week. Our staff also engage in two whole staff formation opportunities throughout the year, one with a focus on our Marist identity, the other with a broader theological theme. In terms of the latter, last week our staff travelled to Loyola College where we were privileged to hear from one of the most renowned spiritual writers in the world, Fr Ron Rolheiser, who led us on an anthropological and theological journey which focused on our role as faith leaders for our community in the 21st century.

If formal learning and prayer opportunities were the only ways our staff developed their faith understanding then we would definitely have missed the mark

Apart from formal learning experiences the staff at Marcellin are committed to Faith in Action. Almost every week the our staff present themselves as models of Christian service as they support and facilitate opportunities for our boys to participate in social outreach activities. Through such diverse activities as REMAR, Soup Van, Juvenile Justice, and St Pius X Homework club, to name but a few, our staff provide opportunities for our students to live their faith through action.

To provide our staff and our community with a clear and detailed understanding of the many opportunities our students have to live out the message of the gospel in our community and beyond, a group of staff have put together a short booklet entitled Hope.....Living Water. This document provides information on all the Social Outreach activities our College is engaged in, along with personal testimonies from staff as to the value of these activities for the communities we serve and for the boys and staff involved in them. The booklet also speaks of the motivation to engage in such activities at Marcellin, which is founded on the good news of Jesus and his challenge to us all to bring that good news through word and action to those who live at the margins of our society.

Soon each family will receive a copy of Hope.....Living Water. I encourage you to read it with your son and discuss how he may engage in the many life affirming and life changing opportunities which exist for our students here at Marcellin.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the following staff who have contributed to this important publication: Emily Andrews, Alfio Camarda, Fiona Dyball, Ivan Ivas, Melissa Mackellin, Michael Noonan and Angela Tsotsos and Carolyn Young.

Opening of the Hermitage extension and atrium space
This week was a very exciting one for all of us at Marcellin as we took possession of the new Hermitage extension and atrium space. I have been particularly impressed with how our students have engaged with this mature space. I look forward to witnessing how our students and staff engage with this space as a place of learning, collaboration, teamwork and friendship.

This new building space is not only one which shelters us and provides us with a place to learn, it speaks to us and teaches us many important lessons in life. From the indigenous garden at the entrance, to the atrium, to the timeline of the 200-year history of the Marists, I particularly encourage our boys to access these many wonderfully engaging and innovative learning opportunities.

Our builders will now take full possession of the original hermitage building for the purposes of renovation and rejuvenation. The entire project is on track to be completed early in 2018.

Vale Robert Macri
It is with great sadness that we inform our community of the passing of Robert Macri, father of Ben Marcri. Robert passed away on Tuesday 8 August after a battle with cancer. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Macri Family at this time.

Mark Murphy