St Mary's School

Friday 11th February 2022

Let us have such a big heart that everybody finds room in it - Suzanne Aubert/Meri Hōhepa

Dear whānau, tamariki and parishioners,

Thank you to all of you fantastic parents for ensuring our smooth start to the school year for all our families. It's been a new start for some so I'd like to welcome our new students:

Linisha Chillara, Ruby Bonnar (Sophie's little sister), Cuda Bryan (Fagan and Detroit's little brother), Ayla Muir, Oscar Cunningham, Miller Duncan, Makayla Coats, Moss Wilson, Edwin Kuluthumkal Jibin, Seona Sebin, Myia Eichstaedt, Lleyton Eichstaedt, Awatea Carroll and Zion Rentoy. Wishing you very happy school days and we look forward to welcoming all of you at our Welcome Liturgy later this term.

Either today or Monday you will receive a class newsletter that will have your class teacher's email address. It is a good way to contact staff whilst you can't see them face to face, however, I am asking all my teachers to stop working at 5.00 and to try not to check emails over the weekends. I like teachers to be as refreshed as possible when they are with your children each day :)

Thanks families, for following all our health and safety requests that keep our children safe, especially our most vulnerable students. You'll see a note below about signing children in and out during school hours, and I am still asking for parents to drive carefully and park thoughtfully in the mornings and at the end of each day.

God bless, Annie

Te kupu o te wiki - the word of the week

Every day at St Mary's we pray, and you will have heard the word karakia before, meaning prayer.

We start every school day with karakia. On Mondays it is for the whole school and one class leads (you may have seen this on zoom recently) and Tuesday through to Friday karakia is said in the classroom. The whole school prayer is this:

Good morning dear Jesus, this day is for you. I ask you to bless all I think, say and do. I love you Father in heaven, you are as good as good can be, I know you give me everything I know that you love me.

God is in front of me, God is behind me, God is on my right side, God is on my left side, God is all around me.

In the silence of my heart I speak to God, and listen while God speaks to me.

A gentle reminder - and nothing to do with COVID!

If children are leaving school during the day they must leave through the office where they can be signed out. This is essential health and safety requirement with potentially serious consequences if there is an accident, incident or fire.

Please don't take children out of the back gate, or let them come in via the back gate once the school day has started - same reason, we need to know at the office who is on site.

Suzanne Aubert - A woman of great faith

The quote at the top of the newsletter usually comes directly from the Bible, but today's quote is from the Venerable Suzanne Aubert, also known as Meri Hōhepa. Meri Hōhepa was a Sister of Compassion who at the age of 25 left Lyon in France to join Bishop Pompallier's missionary to Auckland. She is very well known for her compassion for the poor, the lonely, the sick and the dying. Meri Hōhepa was a remarkable woman; she learnt to speak Te Reo Māori on the boat trip from France to New Zealand and she was an accomplished medicine woman.

The Bishops of Aotearoa New Zealand are asking us all to pray for the beatification of Suzanne Aubert, this will mean that she will be recognised as a Saint within the Catholic Church.

Lord Jesus Christ, you taught us that as often as we show compassion to the least of your brothers and sisters, we show it to you. Hear our prayer that Venerable Suzanne Aubert, who loved the Māori people and devoted her life to the poor, the sick and the underprivileged, and whom the Church has declared to be one of your true and humble followers, may soon be recognised as a saint. Amen.


Here is a photo of our St Mary's students who competed in the South Island Colgate Games. This is an Athletics Meet for 7-14 year olds and was held from the 14-16th January in Invercargill. It included athletes from all over the South Island and some from the North Island. Moss, Mason, Lily and Kate had a great time and produced some awesome results. Highlights included Moss's bronze medal in the 10 year old 800m final. Mason and Kate competed in the 9 year old age group; Mason came 1st in his group in 60m, 100m, 200m and Long Jump and 3rd in his Discus. Kate came 1st in her group in her 100m and Long Jump and 2nd in her 60m.