The Journey through Advent & Christmas: See what God has done
In our Staff Advent reflection this week, we focussed on the theme of becoming wise, following the example of the Magi who recognised the sign of Jesus in the star. We used a beautiful depiction of the Christmas story to lead us into understanding that God is always working in our lives, whether we recognise it or not. You can watch it here:
We recalled that we light candles in Advent to remember that Christ can bring light to the darkness in our lives and to the world. We also remember that Christ’s light can burn away what holds us back from our full potential and the wisdom we gain from the experience of our own lives. The advent wreath is a reminder that we are marking the passage of time – setting goals in our personal lives so that we can be more like Jesus in hope, peace, joy and love. We prayed that as we start the journey towards the manger, daring to express our longing for peace, for healing, and the well-being of all creation, that God would help us to follow the light of Jesus. In a year when it might be really easy to focus on what we could not do, we are reminded to celebrate the aspects of our lives that reflect a Gospel Spirituality and help us to consider what we can change about ourselves this Advent to make the world a brighter place. Then we used a song to reflect on what God has done with, in and through all of us this year, through all the trials, the highs and the lows. You will be amazed when you start to reflect on your own journey that the year has had some wonderful moments when we really knew that God was with us, Emmanuel.
Importantly, we want to recognise the tremendous impact of our College community in seeking to make the world a better place. Over the Year, besides continuing to serve and accumulate over 5000 service hours through the CSL Program, in spite of Covid interruptions, we have been able to make the following donations due to the fundraising efforts of the generous people who make up our community:
Caritas Project Compassion: $3807
World’s Greatest Shave: $3000
SCARF Winter Sleep Out: $2408
India Pratyek Covid Appeal (Edmund Rice Foundation):
Mullets for Mental Health: $10,000
Year 7 WIRES: $700
Year 8 Chloe Saxby Foundation: $800
Years 9 & 10 SCARF: $650
Year 11 & 12 RAWA: $600
Additionally, over the past two weeks while we have been preparing for the end of the school year, the students, staff and families have also been busy making time to help families in our local area through the Homeless Hub and St Vincent de Paul in West Wollongong and Gwynneville. We were able to donate $1000 to each group as well as food items and bags valued at well over $2000 to assist young women, through the ‘Share the Dignity – It’s in the Bag Appeal.’ As a College for young men, a priority always needs to be on understanding the complexity around poverty, violence, respect and dignity. So Thank you to the families, staff and students who have made this possible.
The Vinnies Coordinator from West Wollongong, Louise Pinson, sent the following message
What a generous school community you have at ERC. I was overwhelmed with the gifts and cheque we collected last Friday. I’ll give you a more comprehensive report of our Christmas hamper stats in the New Year so you can let the boys and their families know how many people they have helped. I thought the focus on women’s bags and gifts was just wonderful and can’t wait for these to delight some of our women who don’t have many treats.
Director of Identity