St Joseph's Newsletter T3 Wk 8
14 September 2022
Kia Ora Koutou
Kua hinga te Totara i te wao nui a Tane
The Totora has fallen in the forest of Tane
The above Maori Whakatauki (proverb) epitomises the perfect metaphor to express the deepest sadness on hearing of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth. A Totara is a large tree that lives for hundreds of years, and when one of them falls in the forest, it is a great tragedy. The Queen has played an important part in New Zealand’s history, from being Head of State through to the Queen’s state visits. As a community we have marked her passing with the flags at school being at half mask and Fr Stuart held a Requiem Mass for the Queen last Sunday. This week the Government announced that Monday 26 September there is a public holiday in recognition of the Queen’s passing.
Te wiki o te reo maori
Māori Language Week
This week is Maori Language week and there are a number of activities taking place to help celebrate the reo. Keep an eye out on Facebook for the photos. Maori language plays an important part of New Zealand culture and is one of three official languages of the country. It’s great that mainstream media are now getting behind the promotion of Maori Language and making it a part of everyday language. My thanks to the cultural committee for their help in organising the activities at lunchtime and Mrs Goodhall for supporting the teachers with Te Reo.
Last week I attended the AIMS Games and was the coach of our Girls Hockey team. It was great to see our school send such a large team over to Tauranga to compete. We had a number of individuals competing as well as three teams, a boys football team, a girls hockey team and a mixed water polo team. The students did their best and produced some great results. Some of our individuals did really well with personal bests. To see the full set of results please go to our Facebook page.
Coming up Tuesday 27 September is the Sharing of Learning afternoon. This is an opportunity for parents and whanau to go through the classrooms to have a look at the wonderful learning taking place. Make sure you note this date down. I look forward to seeing you there.
Kia manaaki te Atua koutou katoa
Tumuaki / Principal
Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C Sunday, Sept 11, 2022
Jesus responds to those who criticize him for keeping company with the unworthy.
Background on the Gospel Reading
In Chapter 15 of Luke's Gospel, Jesus tells three parables about losing, finding, and rejoicing. The outcasts of society, the taxpayers, and the sinners approach Jesus eager to hear what he has to say. In Luke's Gospel, hearing is a sign of conversion. The Pharisees and scribes, still suspicious of Jesus, complain about him associating with sinners. So he tells them these three parables.
In the first story, the parable of The Lost Sheep, the shepherd leaves behind the 99 sheep to search for the 1 lost sheep. When he finds it, the shepherd rejoices not alone as in Matthew's version, but with friends and neighbours. In the same way, God rejoices more over 1 sinner who repents—like the outcasts who have come to hear Jesus—than over the 99 righteous like the Pharisees and scribes.
The second story, about a poor woman who will not stop searching until she finds her lost coin, makes the same point. Why are the Pharisees complaining? They should rejoice when the lost are found.
Finally we come to what is probably the most memorable parable in the Gospels, the story we know as The Prodigal Son. Just as in The Lost Sheep and The Lost Coin, this story (found only in Luke) is really about the seeker. The loving father is at the centre of this parable. Even though his son runs off with his father's inheritance and squanders the money, the father waits for him, hoping for his return. Upon his son's return, the father, “full of compassion,” runs out to embrace and forgive him before the son can utter one word of repentance. At this point the rejoicing begins.
The parable does not end there. Rather, it makes one more point about the older son's reaction. This son who never left, just like the Pharisees and scribes who feel they are righteous, refuses to enter his father's house to join in the rejoicing. He has served his father. He has obeyed him. Perhaps it was not out of love. The father's response teaches us that God's care and compassion extend to the righteous and sinner alike. When we are lost, God doesn't wait for our return. He actively seeks us out. And when the lost are found, how could we not celebrate and rejoice?
Tuesday 27 September: Sharing of Learning
The school will be open from 2.00pm-4.30pm. Parents are invited to come into classrooms with your child, so that your child can show you their learning and their classroom.
Congratulations to Bella McLauchlan-Hillary who achieved Distinction in the Digital Technologies Exam. Well done Bella!
READ-ATHON Sponsorship Money
Thanks to all of those who have returned the forms and Sponsorship money for the Read-athon. The funds raised will go towards exciting activities for our students later this year. This includes Year 0-6 Swimming Lessons, Year 4-6 camp and the Waimarino Trip for our Year 7&8's. Any further money can be handed into the office.
Thanks for your support,
St Joseph's Fairfield PTFA
Students Arriving Early
Parking on Strowan Avenune and Clarkin Ave
Student Well Being
Our Counsellor will work more closely with individuals and small groups. If you wish to make a referral to the counsellor for a student please fill in the following form:
Enrolments for 2023
We have some good news regarding our school uniform! All items of the uniform can now be purchased via the school. We are no longer selling any uniform items at NZ Uniforms in Hamilton.
Please use the Kindo app to purchase items and these will then be sent to your child's classroom. If you need to try on items, please come to the school office after 9am and we can help you with this or you can call on 855 5434 to arrange a time.
Please be aware that there may be limited sizes of certain items.
Catholic Intermediate Schools Cross Country
Well done to the Year 7 and 8 students who competed in the CIS Cross Country at Te Awamutu recently. The combined results of all our runners earned us the ‘Overall Winning School' award.
Special congratulations to:
Archie Mason - 2nd Year 7 Boy
Tessa Scott - 1st Year 8 Girl
Bella McLauchlan-Hillary - 2nd Year 8 Girl
Dylan Robinson - 3rd Year 8 Boy
Last week we had 36 Year 7 and 8 students participate in the annual AIMS Games in a range of different sports. We had teams competing in hockey, football and water polo. We also had a number of students competing in individual events including cross country, gymnastics, swimming and rock climbing. While some of the results did always go our way, the students had a great time at Aims and created some long lasting memories. A big thank you to the sponsors and the parents for all their help to make this possible.
It was a team of tired boys that returned from AIMS last Friday. They always knew the calibre of teams was going to be strong and this helped prepare them for what was a tough tournament. Whilst results didn’t go their way, they can be extremely proud of the resilience and determination they showed in every match. Not once did they drop their heads and give up…they supported and encouraged each other and did themselves and the school proud. They were also the first team to line up and congratulate the opposition on their win. It was great to see them begin to develop as a team throughout the week and begin to implement the fundamentals of football; including communication, passing and receiving and running off the ball. I know there was some individual learning that each player will take away from the experience and will use on their football journey. Thank you to Kirsty Parker and Christine Taylor for playing ‘mum’ to the boys and for all the parents that helped with the support of the team.
A successful week overall for the hockey team. After 9 games over 5 days the girls were exhausted but even in that last game when they played off for 25th/26th they took to the turf the way they had approached every game before, with determination and passion. The week ended with 1 draw, 2 wins and 6 losses and a placing of 26th. Strong defence was the stand out from this team, more than once opposing coaches commented on how tough and frustrating the girls were on the turf, disrupting flow and game plans. We kept margins small, including those games where our opposition had been winning by 12 or more. The girls attacking play is not to be forgotten either, goals were scored and many opportunities were oh so close. They emptied the tank in every game. These 11 girls all played for each other as a true team, they supported and encouraged on and off the turf. They were gracious in defeat and in their wins, always talking to the opposing team after the game, complimenting others on their play. They were a credit to themselves, their parents and St Joseph’s. Thank you to all the parents who came across to support and those who messaged. We heard it all! Special thank you to Teresa Baird and Murray McLeod-Dunn for all their organising, support and help throughout the week. Finally, Mr Stuart and Mrs van Eyk were incredibly proud of how this team conducted themselves all week, we could not have asked for more.
Through their determination against some tough competition, the St Joseph’s Sea Dragons achieved a great overall result - coming in at 12th place out of 24 teams. There were some very tired kids by the end of the week, many of whom had also competed in individual sports earlier in the games. We were lucky that our games were in warm pools, with the extreme weather bomb that hit earlier in the week. Thank you to Olivia for coaching. Liv was committed to achieving the best results possible, giving up a huge amount of her time to run early morning practices at Waterworld, as well as tournament games leading up to Aims. Thank you to our manager Kelly for keeping the team well-fed, watered, organised and motivated throughout the week. The children should all feel proud of their amazing commitment leading up to the games, from early morning starts to train, to Sunday tournaments. Thank you to all the parents, siblings and grandparents who travelled to come and cheer their kids on. This team were a spirited bunch! Whether it was singing their hearts out to and from games, playing soccer on the beach, board games, table tennis or playing spotlight - many great memories were made!
For detailed results and photos, check out our Facebook page and look for the next AIMS games newsletter.
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St Joseph’s Fairfield has opted into the government initiative to provide period products for students. This initiative aims to provide free period products to children and young people in all schools across New Zealand. Periods are a fact of life for half the population. Despite this, young people don’t always have access to the products they need to feel comfortable at school, engage in their learning, and manage what should be a normal and healthy part of life. If you want to know more, click here for a link to the Ministry of Education information.
At St Joseph’s, we have put in place a discreet delivery system so that girls can take home a monthly allocation of period products (two boxes per month). We know that some girls at this age might feel too shy to openly discuss period products with their peers or a staff member, so we want to make access easy and remove any embarrassment for them.
Each girl can fill in this Google Form which lets them select from various products.
COVID 19 - Update
New long-term strategy for COVID-19
You’ll be aware that New Zealand will move to a new, long-term approach to COVID-19. These changes have been made based on public health advice and reflect high levels of immunity and declining case numbers across New Zealand.
This new approach will only result in minor changes to the way we operate.
The very positive news is that household contacts of a person with COVID-19 do not need to isolate, but instead are asked to complete a RAT test each day, for five days. Therefore, ākonga who are household contacts but test negative and do not have COVID-19 symptoms, should continue to attend. It is the best place for them to be so they can be engaged in their learning, and connected with their teachers, classmates and friends.
Information on how to get RAT kits can be found here: Request a RAT– Ministry of Health
Mask wearing is no longer required.
All the other recommended public health measures will stay in place as we know they reduce the spread of infectious illnesses including COVID-19. These include ensuring our indoor spaces are well-ventilated, maintaining good hand hygiene, encouraging everyone to cough or sneeze into elbows and, most importantly, staying home and getting tested if they have COVID-19 symptoms.
Thank you for your ongoing support in protecting our community.