"Keep alert, stand firm in your faith, be courageous, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love." (1 Cor 16: 13)

Each year in the week of Saint Mary of the Cross MacKillop’s Feast Day, the College celebrates our Josephite spirituality by joining with other Josephite schools across Australia to celebrate Father Julian Tenison Woods, St Joseph and St Mary MacKillop in our annual JJAMM Week. This year, our student leaders chose to explore in a deeper way the courage espoused in the lives of Mary MacKillop and Christ. The scripture passage above reflects the theme chosen for our JJAMM Week here at MSJ; Living with a Courageous Heart. Throughout the week, students engaged in various activities that called them to be true to themselves and live with courage.

On the Monday, students and staff rugged up as the College turned off all our heaters and lights for the day. A small and simple act that called students to reflect on the impact our use of electricity has on the environment. Focusing on Father Julian Tenison Woods' love for creation, students were challenged to reflect on their own environmental impact outside the school. Tuesday saw some courageous staff dressing up for the day in student nominated outfits, this Dress to Impress fundraising idea was put forward by the Year 12 RE Ministry class. Students were given an amount that had to fundraise to see the staff dress up. In just two short days, students raised $427 for Joseph’s Corner, a local charity run by Sr Jeanne Dwyer rsj.

Wednesday provided students and staff a unique opportunity to hear from Sisters of Saint Joseph of the Sacred Heart from across Melbourne. Students were asked to submit questions prior to the panel and were keen to hear from the Sisters about a number of things including, What inspired the Sisters to join the Josephites? What were their dreams for every MSJ graduate?, and What do they enjoy most about being a Sister?. The panel had a big turnout of students who thoroughly enjoyed hearing the Sisters' stories; thank you to Sr Kerrie, Sr Carmel, Sr Anne and Sr Therese for joining us.

Thursday was the Feast of Mary MacKillop so we decided to celebrate with our annual JJAMM donut eating contest. Mr Meilak took out the staff contest again. Eleven Year 7 students were also provided the unique opportunity to join the Sisters at the Heritage Centre in East Melbourne for Mass. It was a great joy to celebrate Mary MacKillop’s Feast Day with so many Josephites in the same chapel Mary MacKillop would have prayed.

The week was capped off with our Feast Day celebrations. From Mass to the annual school Fete, our guest speaker Genevieve Bryant and MSJ’s Got Talent final, the school was filled with joy. It truly was a community event. We look forward to hearing about the final fundraising efforts that will go to the work of the MacKillop Today Foundation.

Danielle Fairthorne - Director of Catholic Identity