Principal's Blog

Each week, our Principal shares his reflections on learning in this Catholic community.


Week 9 Term 3 2016

Dear Parents, Students, Staff and Friends of the Magdalene Community,

Congratulations to our Year 10 students on their recent involvement in the “Opening Doors” day which involved a range of service providers working with our Year 10 students in the area of careers education. We received many impressive comments about Year 10 and I congratulate them on the way they engaged in the day. Special thanks to all staff involved, particularly Mrs Dobbie and Mr Arzapitian for their organization and support.

Magdalene Classics was held last Sunday and we sincerely thank Mr Mäe and all staff, students and parents who were involved in this special event which showcased the talents of our community.

As we move into the final week for Year 12, I continue to ask for your thoughts and prayers for this graduating class. A farewell assembly involving staff, students and parents will be held next Wednesday 21 September beginning at 10am. On Wednesday evening the Year 12 Graduation Mass will be held at St Paul’s Camden at 7pm. We wish all students every success as they prepare for the HSC beginning in Term 4 and encourage all Year 12 students to ensure they have prepared thoroughly and make use of the holiday classes that will be on offer.

Staff and students involved in the Europe excursion will depart next Thursday and we wish them safe travels as they combine a study of Germany and Italy history and culture.  It is a wonderful opportunity and we look forward to hearing about their travels. Sincere thanks to Mrs Said and Mrs Byrnes who have been the driving force behind the organization of this event.

Year 8 students will be involved in the Public Speaking finals next Monday and we wish them success as they compete against Good Samaritan Catholic College Hinchinbrook.

Over the past weeks there has been a detailed process undertaken in the selection of student leaders for 2017. I have been highly impressed with the depth of potential leadership at Magdalene and we congratulate the selected leaders as listed below. Thank you to all students who put themselves forward for leadership and I encourage them to still look for opportunities to develop their leadership in the year ahead.


We would like to congratulate the Year 11 leaders on the following appointments.

School Captains: Alexandra Willis, Bailey Whitley

School Vice Captains: Kaitlyn Paroz, Zachary Gomes

School Spirit: Isaac Percy, Mikayla Cummins-Wotton

Social Justice Councillors: Ava Davidson, Sarah Johnstone

Faith and Liturgy Councillors: Lachlan Abernethy, Samyra King

Environmental Councillors: Georgia Nagle, Amber-Jayne Matthews

Sports Captains: Sheree Farrell, Steven Dengate

House Captains:

11 Bruchhauser:   Georgia Davey, Lachlan Opalniuk

11 Dunne:            Chloe Veness, Cameron Mills

11 Hogan:            Jasmine Bajada, Kurt Sookee

11 Moore:             Peta Alvaro, Jordan Lombardo

11 Sedgwick:        Lauren Wright, Laétin Perrin-Russo

11 Wilson:           Roisin Bolwell, Kaiden Roberts    


Year 7: Vince Arcadi, Kaitlyn Myers, Jack Haines

Year 8: Olivia Nagle, Flynn O'keeffe, William Kiss

Year 9: Harrison Collins-Webb, Georgia Howarth, Paris Maguire

Year 10: Lauren Avero, Connor McFarlane, Dominique Messina, Bradley Bishop


Leadership Induction Ceremony

The Leadership Induction Ceremony will be held on Wednesday 12 October  9.30am - 11.00am.

With the term drawing to a close, thank you to all staff, students and parents for your work, commitment and support over the past 10 weeks. It has been a term where we have seen a great engagement in many significant events that could only have been successful because of the willing support of this community.

The recent Canonisation by Pope Francis of Mother Teresa is a significant event in the Catholic Church. The verses below reportedly were written on the wall in Mother Teresa’s own room. In any case, their association with Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity has made them popular worldwide, expressing as they do, the spirit in which they lived their lives. 

Some sources say that the words below were written on the wall in Mother Teresa’s own room. In any case, their         association with Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity has made them popular worldwide, expressing as they do, the spirit in which they lived their lives.

I offer these verses for your reflection:

People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.

What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.

Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.

In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.

St Mother Teresa - Pray for us.

St Mary Magdalene  - Pray for us.


God Bless


Acting Principal

Mr Michael Mullaly









Week 7 Term 3 2016

Dear Parents, Students, Staff and Friends of the Magdalene Community,

Last Sunday the Catholic Church in Australia celebrated Migrant and Refugee Sunday. Pope Francis, in keeping with the theme for the Jubilee Year of Mercy, brings to the forefront the connection between the issues that migrants and refugees face and the message from the Gospel of Mercy. The challenge for all members of a Catholic community is how we view the treatment of refugees globally and in our local communities and whether our response towards migrants and refugees is grounded in mercy.

Pope Francis says ” Today, more than in the past, the Gospel of mercy troubles our consciences, prevents us from taking the suffering of others for granted, and points out a way of responding which, grounded in the theological virtues of faith, hope and charity, find practical expression in works of spiritual and corporal mercy.”  To know who these migrants or refugees are, to understand why they are coming to our communities, to know their stories, and to be welcoming are ways in which we can extend our mercy.

I offer the following question posed by Pope Francis as our reflection this week:

“Migrants are our brothers and sisters in search of a better life, far away from poverty, hunger, exploitation and the unjust distribution of the planet’s resources which are meant to be equitably shared by all. Don’t we all want a better, more decent and prosperous life to share with our loved ones?”

The recent St Vincent De Paul Doorknock Appeal undertaken by members of our school community last weekend raised approximately $6000. Our sincere thanks are extended to all staff, students and parents who were involved. Under the leadership of Mr Collins, the involvement of our community was greatly appreciated and this was recognized at our recent assembly. The generosity of time and spirit to assist those less fortunate and needy members of the wider Macarthur region is clearly a wonderful example of mercy in action.

The Carrington Project, “Through Our Eyes” which operates on Tuesday afternoons, involves students volunteering to visit the Carrington Centennial Care Nursing Home and engage with the local residents. Under the guidance of Mrs Borg students have developed some wonderful relationships with the elderly residents and this work was recognized last Tuesday at a special afternoon tea. This initiative recognizes the links with our local community and assists students to put their faith into action through the nature of their involvement. All students and staff should be very proud of their achievements.

Year 12 are in their final weeks before beginning the HSC exams in Term 4 and I ask that the school community keep them in your thoughts and prayers. Year 11 have a range of assessments over Week 9 and 10 which will lead to the completion of the Preliminary Course. All other students are encouraged to be positive learners in each of their classes. Parents of students in Year 7 and 9 would have received the NAPLAN test results and it is hoped that this will provide valuable insights into their literacy and numeracy achievements.

Congratulations to Mr and Mrs Rowe on the recent birth of their son Benjamin Stephen. We welcome Mr Anthony Burden to the school as he replaces Mrs Rowe whilst she is on parental leave. Farewell  to Mrs Dowdell next week as she takes leave to prepare for the birth of her third child. Our best wishes to Mr and Mrs Dowdell at this special time. We welcome Ms Loca who will be replacing Mrs Dowdell.

An invitation is extended to parents and students to view the major works for Year 12 students in Furniture and Design and Technology along with Senior Visual Art, Drama & Photography works on Wednesday 7 September in the Learning Resource Centre from 5.30pm – 7.00pm.

An invitation is extended to parents/carers and students to attend the Annual Magdalene Classics performance which will be held on Sunday 11 September in the Mater Dei Chapel at 2pm - 4.00pm.

I recently had a wonderful opportunity to spend the day with Year 11 students as part of a Leadership Day as they prepare to take on the leadership roles as Year 12 students in 2017. The depth and quality of these young women and men gave the staff who attended a feeling of great hope and anticipation as we were able to view first hand their leadership aspirations and capabilities. The results of this important process of selection will be announced to the school community in the coming weeks.

To all the Fathers in the Magdalene Community I wish you the very best for Father’s Day on Sunday and offer the following prayer on your behalf:


Prayer for Fathers

God our Father,

In your wisdom and love you made all things,

Bless those fathers who have taken upon

themselves the responsibility of parenting.

Bless those who have lost a spouse to death,

separation, or divorce, 

and who are parenting their children alone.

Strengthen all Dads by your love that they may

be the loving, caring persons they are meant to be.

Grant this through Christ our Lord




God Bless

Mr Michael Mullaly

Acting Principal




Week 5 Term 3 2016




Dear Parents, Students, Staff and Friends of the Magdalene Community,

On Wednesday evening a letter from Mr Peter Turner, Director of Schools Diocese of Wollongong was emailed to all parents. The letter referred to media reports relating to online postings of alleged graphic sexual images and the identification of Catholic schools in the Macarthur area. I ask all parents to take time to speak with your daughters and sons about the responsible use of social media.

On the weekend of 27 and 28 August students from Magdalene have been invited to participate in the annual St Vincent de Paul Door Knock Appeal.  In this Year of Mercy this is a wonderful example of the Works of Mercy. The Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy are actions we can perform that extend God’s compassion and mercy to those in need.

The Corporal Works of Mercy are these kind acts by which we help our neighbours with their material and physical needs:

Feed the hungry                              Clothe the naked                               Bury the dead

Shelter the homeless                        Visit the sick and imprisoned               Give alms to the poort

The Door Knock Appeal supports the St Vincent de Paul Society in their work amongst the needy in our community so we ask for your support in the coming weeks. Mr Collins is coordinating the appeal with our students.

I offer the Year of Mercy Prayer for your reflection.

Lord Jesus Christ,

you have taught us to be merciful like the heavenly Father,

and have told us that whoever sees you sees Him.

Show us your face and we will be saved.

Your loving gaze freed Zacchaeus and Matthew from being enslaved by money;

the adulteress and Magdalene from seeking happiness only in created things;

made Peter weep after his betrayal, and assured Paradise to the repentant thief.

Let us hear, as if addressed to each one of us, the words that you spoke to the Samaritan woman:

“If you knew the gift of God!”

You are the visible face of the invisible Father,

of the God who manifests his power above all by forgiveness and mercy:

let the Church be your visible face in the world, its Lord risen and glorified.

You willed that your ministers would also be clothed in weakness

in order that they may feel compassion for those in ignorance and error:

let everyone who approaches them feel sought after, loved, and forgiven by God.

Send your Spirit and consecrate every one of us with its anointing,

so that the Jubilee of Mercy may be a year of grace from the Lord,

and your Church, with renewed enthusiasm, may bring good news to the poor,

proclaim liberty to captives and the oppressed,

and restore sight to the blind.

We ask this through the intercession of Mary, Mother of Mercy,

you who live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit for ever and ever.


The Year 9, 2017 Elective evening was held last Monday and I thank the staff, Year 8 students and parents who were involved.  The range of electives allow students in their Stage 5 education to make some choices as to the subjects they wish to study over Year 9 and 10.  I would encourage students to continue to ask questions of the KLA Coordinators if they still need further information.

At a recent assembly I spoke to our school community about the role each one of us has in stewardship of our learning environment. The care and respect of our school and the resources we use on a daily basis requires all members of our community to be aware that we are stewards/caretakers so that the present and next generation of students will continue to reap the benefits of the Magdalene learning environment.  All students were asked to be more aware of the need to keep areas clean and tidy and to also not accept other students deliberately damaging school property. I am pleased to say that there has been a positive response and I congratulate students on meeting this challenge.

Year 12 finished their Trial HSC exams last Monday and are now preparing for feedback that will assist in improving their learning outcomes. It is vital that students are attending each day, wearing correct uniform and focused in every class.

The Year 7 Mathematics day held last Monday was an opportunity for our Year 7 students to experience the practical side of mathematics and to learn how they can apply concepts to everyday situations. They worked through the day very      enthusiastically with the support of their teachers and peers. Thank you to Mr Koch and the mathematics staff for your work and organization of the day.

Breakfast with the Bishop was held last Tuesday which involved our Year 12 school leaders having the opportunity to meet with Bishop Peter and Director of Schools, Mr Peter Turner. The purpose of the breakfast was for the Bishop to have informal conversation with Year 12 leaders across our diocesan schools, celebrate their learning journey and to wish them well as they prepare for their exams and life beyond school. Bishop Peter challenged Year 12 students to believe in themselves, be agents of change and to have hope and optimism for the future.

The Diocesan athletics was held last Wednesday with a number of staff and students involved. Our students represented Magdalene with pride and achieved some pleasing results.

A reminder that Friday 26 August is a pupil free day for students. All staff will be involved in an offsite spirituality day.


God Bless

Mr Michael Mullaly

Acting Principal