Today is Ash Wednesday, a day that marks the beginning of Lent – a season in the Church year that focuses on reflection, prayer and service. The Church, from its earliest times, prepares for Easter by inviting all people to examine their hearts carefully by praying, fasting and almsgiving during Lent. Praying, fasting and almsgiving strengthen us spiritually. We commit to these actions so that we can be one with others, empty ourselves of things that are not necessary and make room for God.
On Ash Wednesday, we come together like the people of the Old Testament to remind ourselves that we don’t always follow God’s ways and need to ask for mercy and forgiveness. Like God’s people in the time of the prophets, we wear ashes to show that we want to turn away from whatever keeps us from God, and to have a change of heart, so that we can live in the right relationship with God and each other.
For Catholics, Ash Wednesday is also a day of fasting and abstaining from meat. Fasting reminds us that food alone cannot make us happy. We must also be fed with prayer, with God’s Word and by meeting Jesus in the Sacraments, especially the Reconciliation and Eucharist. The small sacrifices we make during Lent make room in our hearts to welcome the risen Jesus at Easter.
During Lent, we pray for and help our brothers and sisters throughout the world who, because of poverty and injustice, do not have the opportunities we have. By giving generously through prayer, going without and showing kindness to others during Lent, we are working towards a fairer world for all.
200 Years – Faith in the Future of Catholic Education in Australia
This year marks the 200th anniversary of Catholic Education in Australia. The first official school opened in October 1820 in Parramatta, where its role has been maintained in the area ever since. Over these 200 years, Catholic schools have educated millions of students across the country, providing a vital and valued place in our wider Australian communities. It is wonderful to know that St Joseph’s, our current and past students and families, all form a part of this rich history and I thank everyone for their commitment to our mission and efforts to educate in the Catholic tradition.
Going home with each student today is a prayer card to recognise this significant anniversary. I encourage families to take a moment to share this prayer and to perhaps look at the website https://200years.catholic.edu.au/ to find out a little more.
Next Wednesday, two student leaders and I will be attending a Mass at St Christopher’s to commemorate this 200th Anniversary. The Mass will also be live-streamed if you would like to join this celebration - accessible online here .
Parent / Teacher Interviews
In Week 5, 1 – 5 March, we are holding Parent / Teacher interviews to allow a more formal opportunity to meet with your child’s teacher and to discuss the year ahead. All parents are asked to use the link below to register a time to come into school and meet the teacher. Registrations will close 1 pm Friday 26 February.
It is timely to remind parents about the need to always practice great awareness and safety in and around our school, and in particular when using the car park. Please see the linked Car Park Guidelines.
We also now have a red painted pedestrian/cycleway crossing at our car park entry. Please do not park across this painted red zone when waiting of an afternoon as it causes frustration with others using the path. Unfortunately, last week a member of the public using the path was sworn at by a parent after having it pointed out that they shouldn’t be parked across the red pedestrian crossing. Thank you for your ongoing assistance with making our shared zones as safe as possible.
Have a great end to the week.
Yours with Christ,
Sacrament of Reconciliation
The Year 3 students will soon be preparing for the Sacrament of Reconciliation during their Religion lessons at school. If you would like your child to make this Sacrament, please visit the Parish website to complete an online registration form and make a donation to the church.
Workbooks will be sent home in the coming weeks for you to prepare your child to receive the sacrament. The mass for the Sacrament of Reconciliation will take place on Wednesday 10 March at 6pm.
Important Term 1 Dates:
- Reconciliation Retreat Day (Wednesday 10 March)
- Sacrament of Reconciliation (6pm, Wednesday 10 March)
- Feast of St Joseph (Friday 19 March)
Unfortunately due to COVID restrictions and limited numbers we are unable to invite parents to whole school liturgies.
For further information or any questions, please feel free to contact me on via email: email@example.com
Religious Education Coordinator
Religious Education Coordinator
We welcomed friends into our Defence Kids Club this week. Every Thursday at first break in the library, Defence kids can come along with a friend or two to connect and play together. Here are some great pics from our ‘We are Defence kids” welcome wall.
Sustainability in Action
Meet the Stewardship Team
Layla, Josie, Georgina, Sophie, Olivia and Roshni
This year’s greenest group is off to a powerful start! Our newest team is keen to implement a new sustainable audit program, starting next week!
Each class will be in a competition to win the Term 1 Greenie Award. The Greenie Award is received by the class which earns the most points through proper waste management, electricity conservation and nude food efforts. Each week there will be one environmental focus, with Stewardship Team members performing random room checks. The team is looking forward to creating and sustaining consistent and life-long eco-friendly habits for all Joeys.
While sorting lids, the team has identified a small problem that our kind collectors can help with. “We need to ask people to wash their lids first,” said Sophie. If possible, please give your lids a rinse before bringing them in so that we may spend more time sorting and less time cleaning.
“Children are the world’s most valuable resource and its best hope for the future.” - John F. Kennedy
Welcome to a brand new year that has seen our Library return to its home in the Hub located off our playground equipment. We have been busy organising and returning all books back to their places and starting to conduct home borrowing again. If you happen to find any books that have a St Joseph’s Primary school barcode on it please return it to the library or front office.
Each student has an allocated day to have a library lesson. I would like to encourage each student to remember to bring a library bag in, so they can borrow books and transport the books home safely to read and enjoy together. Please clearly label your bag. Loans are for two weeks.
Wednesday and Thursday
ELC through to Year 2 will be taught by Mrs Jaram
Thursday and Friday
Year 3-6 will be taught by Mrs Parmenter
Students are able to use the library at lunch Monday - Friday for those wishing to borrow, draw or play quiet board games.
Overdue and Damaged/Lost Books
Each term overdue notices are printed and handed out in Week 8 of the school term. Please return books promptly. Any damaged books should be brought back in for repair and if you lose a book please send an email to let us know.
Scholastic Book Club
Once a term, families are given an opportunity to purchase quality books from Scholastic. 20% of the order spend is given back to the school to purchase valuable educational resources via its Rewards program. Our first Book Club brochures were handed out to students last week and last orders will be due by 19 February 2021.
There are no cash purchases any more at St Joseph’s, please do all ordering online. Details are on the brochure sent home with your children.
Georgina Jaram and Catherine Parmenter
Welcome to 2021. My name is Katie and I will be your new Canteen Manager.
The canteen will operate Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, starting in Week 2.
We are always happy to have help in the canteen! If there are any parents/carers interested in helping out in the canteen this term, please do not hesitate to drop into the canteen and say hello or to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Congratulations to this week's award recipients.
Students receive their award at Friday morning assembly at 8.50am. Parents are again welcome to attend this assembly, but photos will continue to be taken each week and shared via SZapp.
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