Homilies

Blessing of new school facilites at St Joan of Arc School, Brighton - Friday 20 February 2015

BLESSING OF NEW SCHOOL FACILITIES AT SAINT JOAN OF ARC'S SCHOOL, BRIGHTON, ON FRIDAY, 20TH FEBRUARY 2015 AT 6.00 P.M.

INTRODUCTION

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I am honoured to join Father Martin Dixon, your parish priest, your Principal, Mr Tony McMahon, staff, parents and students at the blessing of these wonderful new facilities.

This moment of prayer will see God working through all that he has done here.

HOMILY

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

When I visited Saint Joan of Arc's during last year, I was very impressed with the huge works being undertaken in the school.  This says to me that you want to give your children the very best education in the knowledge and love of God, help them to live according to Christian principles, but then tap into their gifts and help them to really prepare well for life.

I do congratulate Father Dixon, Mr. McMahon and all here at Saint Joan of Arc's for the precious way in which you value the integrity and beauty of our young people and enable them to develop their great talents so that they will be major contributors in the world of the future.

Knowledge and love of God and proper education in our faith gives a vision of the dignity and beauty of people, which accompanies the preparation that we must give in the best possible way for life in the community.  I am grateful too for the significant number of initiatives undertaken here at Saint Joan of Arc's and for the leadership which the school provides in inserting our young people and families into the community as a community of faith and love.

Pope Francis is very strong in his invitation to us to be joyful, to be brave and courageous in times of suffering as I know you have had, but also to work together with a common vision of what we can become.

I have always believed that what we are able to do together is far greater than the individual talents of others.  One of the exciting things about Saint Joan of Arc's is the way in which the inquiring minds and talents of young people meet with the experience and knowledge of our teachers.  I would urge our teachers to be sure that they are always seeking to deepen their knowledge by further reflection, by courses and developing their abilities because our children are deserving of everything that we can give them.

Moreover, I want to say how proud I am of the families of Brighton, because the efforts that you make here to provide good school facilities are not made without great sacrifices on behalf of you parents.  And what I would say to the young people is to remind you that your parents make great sacrifices to send you to Saint Joan of Arc's, to provide proper facilities and to support the parish and the parish priest, and in doing that in the best possible way so that Saint Joan of Arc's will be a place of learning, inspiration, joy and hope.

Congratulations to our builder and architect for the countless days that they have worked so well to provide these facilities, which will now come alive in their use by teachers, children and families alike.  Congratulations and thanks to all.

+ Denis J. Hart,

ARCHBISHOP OF MELBOURNE.

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