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Year 12 Religious Education (Issue 12 2017)

Written on the 17 August 2017

The Year 12 Religious Education course has been developed to provide opportunities to encourage personal and spiritual growth. The lessons are delivered in a retreat style with interactive activities and points of discussion. Topics covered include Being Marist, Life, Grief and Loss, Resilience, Holy Trinity, Catholic Prayer and the Holy Rosary.

For the Holy Trinity topic, students were challenged with a competition to creatively represent the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit in a modern sculpture. Each class was asked to submit one entry and Mr James Gill judged the 17 entries to find the winning design. I applaud all the classes on their creative contributions and congratulate Ms Adriana Cvorkov's class on their artistic representation of the Holy Trinity and its beautiful explanation. 

Each Year 12 class attended a liturgy with Marist Brother, Greg Hugh and I thank him sincerely for running the liturgy five times to cover all the classes. Students had a wonderful opportunity to get to know Brother Greg through an interview platform and to experience the Rosary. Brother Greg was asked many questions about his teenage years, becoming a brother, how Marists are making a difference in the world and how important prayer is to him. A true story teller, Brother Greg gave us much to think about. I've included two responses that have resonated with the students and myself.

"The world I lived in as a boy was a vastly different world to what we have today. In a way, life was fairly simple and uncomplicated. Imagine a world in which there is no TV, only one radio in the house (a valve one), no iPhones, in fact no phone at all for most families... My entertainment was reading books, going to the Saturday afternoon movies each week and just being with mum (my dad had died when I was eight). I spent most of my teenage years in a boarding school, a place where those who wanted to become Marist Brothers first completed their education (called a Juniorate). My teenage years, therefore, were great with plenty of company and plenty of fun, to the detriment of my studies I must confess. I just enjoyed life and being with my peers."

Brother Greg was a teacher and a principal spanning over 50 years and was asked to describe the strengths of youth today and what they need to improve on. He pinpointed a number of strengths...

"Generosity, energy and enthusiasm, openness, a strong sense of community, and a basic spirituality. There are many dimensions of what it is to be human - the physical, emotional etc. - but one dimension is the spiritual. We were all created in the image and likeness of God, and that means that the spiritual part of being human is essential if we are to achieve our real purpose in life, that is, to live as God wants us to live and to be in a loving relationship with Him in this life and forever in the next. This is what God wants of all of us. If there is one thing I would recommend to young people today (and many of the older ones as well) it is to take the spiritual side of who we are very seriously, and this means reading the gospels and reflecting on them, and above all praying to God for the grace to live a good life, consistent with our nature as God has created it. One other thing I would recommend is that young people see the value of commitment to whatever they set out to do."

The liturgy gave students time to reflect on their commitments towards their final weeks of Year 12 and their futures. Sacred Heart College gifted each student with a rosary bracelet made of olive wood from Jerusalem. The bracelet is to encourage personal prayer and reflection, and to act as a constant reminder of our strong Marist connection to Mary, the Mother of God.

Sacred Heart College congratulates all Year 12 students in the completion of formal religious education lessons and awarded each student with a certificate. I would like to acknowledge the positive way students have contributed in their RE lessons and the many students who eagerly accepted to read during the rosary liturgies. I also thank the support of our Year 12 RE teachers for their dedicated efforts in the delivery of the program.

I wish the Year 12 cohort the very best for the remainder of their year and ask God to bless them as they make their transition into their next chapter in life.

Enza Vessali
Head of Religious Education


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