St Joseph's Newsletter T1 Wk1

4th February 2021

Week 1 Term 1


Kia Ora Koutou

Nau Mai, Haere Mai I Te Kura

Welcome back to school

Welcome back to school! I hope everyone had a restful break with their families and enjoyed the summer weather. It has been wonderful to see how well our students have settled back into school. A very special welcome to those families who are new to our school. We know your time at St Joseph's Catholic School will be very special.

We welcome a number of new staff to the school. Please make them feel a part of the school community.

Ms Shannon Dons - Room 7 Teacher

Ms Maria Cameron - Kohuri Teacher

Mrs Claire Velzian- Kohuri Teacher

Mrs Shelley Thorndike - Teacher Aide

Mr Keegan Greene - Teacher Aide

Year of St Joseph

With the Apostolic Letter “Patris corde” (“With a Father’s Heart”), Pope Francis recalls the 150th anniversary of the declaration of Saint Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church. To mark the occasion, the Holy Father has proclaimed a “Year of Saint Joseph” from 8 December 2020, to 8 December 2021. With Saint Joseph being the patron saint of our school there will be different events to celebrate the ‘Year of Saint Joseph’.

A daily prayer to St Joseph… and a challenge

In his letter, Pope Francis notes how, “Every day, for over forty years, following Morning Prayer” he has “recited a prayer to Saint Joseph taken from a nineteenth-century French prayer book of the Congregation of the Sisters of Jesus and Mary.” This prayer, he says, expresses devotion and trust, and even poses a certain challenge to Saint Joseph,” on account of its closing words: “My beloved father, all my trust is in you. Let it not be said that I invoked you in vain, and since you can do everything with Jesus and Mary, show me that your goodness is as great as your power.”

At the conclusion of his Letter, he adds another prayer to St Joseph, which he encourages all of us to pray together:

Hail, Guardian of the Redeemer,

Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

To you God entrusted his only Son;

in you Mary placed her trust;

with you Christ became man.

Blessed Joseph, to us too,

show yourself a father

and guide us in the path of life.

Obtain for us grace, mercy, and courage,

and defend us from every evil. Amen.

Covid 19

Over the summer period we have seen in the news other countries entering lockdown to prevent the spread of the new strain of Covid 19. With people still arriving in the country from those Covid hotspots we still need to be vigilant. As a school we are following the guidance from the Ministry of Education and will be encouraging good hygiene practices with students. If your child is unwell they must stay at home. At the different entry points to the school is the QR code.

I look forward to seeing many of you at the Team Information Sessions for Parents next Tuesday.

Kia manaaki te Atua koutou katoa

Grant Stuart


Gospel Reflection

Fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time, Cycle B

Sunday, January 31, 2021

Gospel Reading

Mark 1:21-28

Jesus heals a man with an unclean spirit and his fame spreads throughout Galilee.

Background on the Gospel Reading

Today’s Gospel continues our reading from Mark and describes what some believe was likely to have been a typical day in Jesus’ ministry. Jesus and the disciples that chose to follow him in last week’s Gospel arrive at Capernaum, a small village on the Sea of Galilee. Jesus teaches in the synagogue on the Sabbath. Mark reports that the people respond to Jesus’ teaching with astonishment, noting Jesus’ authority and contrasting it with the scribes’. Early in Mark’s Gospel we already find evidence of the tension that will manifest itself fully in Jerusalem.

After Jesus’ preaching, an even more astonishing thing happens. A man possessed with an unclean spirit calls out to Jesus. As we see in this example and throughout Mark’s Gospel, the spirits and demons seem to know Jesus and are often fearful of him. In fact, they seem to understand Jesus’ identity better than his disciples. As we will read again and again in Mark’s Gospel, Jesus orders the spirit to be quiet and drives the unclean spirit out of the man. Jesus’ ability to heal those possessed by demons is an indication of his power over evil.

In the pre scientific age of Jesus’ time, all illnesses were understood to be manifestations of evil and sinfulness. Our modern understanding of illness is very different. Possession by unclean spirits may have been a way to describe what we might call mental illness today. It may have even been a way of describing certain kinds of physical conditions. There is evidence that there were many kinds of exorcists and healers in first-century Palestine. Jesus appears to be like these healers, but he heals with unique authority and connects his healing activities with the words of his preaching.

We are missing the point that Mark is trying to make in this Gospel, however, if we try to explain away the healing work of Jesus. The crowds see in Jesus’ cure of the possessed man further affirmation of his authority. Jesus’ power to heal gives greater credence to his teaching. Jesus impresses the crowds through his words, which are manifested with power in his deeds. Mark’s Gospel tells us that because of the authority with which he healed, Jesus’ fame spread throughout all of Galilee.

Value Focus

Big picture

Children’s Liturgy

The Parish is looking for new people to help take Children’s Liturgy on a Sunday. The commitment is two Sunday’s a term. The resources are provided and there is training available. If you are interested in becoming part of the team then please email

Sacramental Programme 2021 for The Parish of the Holy Cross

This programme is for children who have reached the age of reason which is 7 years of age. Reconciliation classes will run for 4 Monday evenings at St Joseph's Church, Fairfield commencing on Monday 22 February at 6pm. Registration forms are available for collection from the Parish office at St Joseph's, 86 Clarkin Rd, Office Hours: Monday to Friday 9am to 3.30pm, or via email upon request to:


Upcoming Events

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Meet the Teacher Appointments

Monday 22 February (2.00-6.00pm)

and Tuesday 23 February (3.00-5.00pm)

We invite you to make an appointment to meet with your child’s classroom teacher in Week 4 of this term. This is a time for you to get to know your child’s teacher, discuss how the first few weeks of school have progressed, and let us know anything we need to know about your child. The appointments will be 10 minutes long.

Bookings are now open through the online School Interviews system:

Click on this link, or go to the School Interviews website and enter the booking code:

Booking Link: St Joseph's Fairfield Meet the Teacher Term 1 2021

Event code: yw22t


A reminder that students waiting to be picked up after school need to wait either by the office at Strowan Avenue, or in front of the church with the duty teacher. If they are not collected from the front of the church by 3.00pm, they will then be taken to wait at the office. Please do not tell your children to play on the playground while they wait for you, as this is not supervised; they need to wait at one of the designated spots. We remind all families to be considerate with parking around our school, and please do not drive or walk down the driveway to drop off or to collect students.

SJF ‘No Nuts’ Policy

At St Joseph’s we have a ‘No Nuts’ policy. This means that no student is allowed to bring nuts of any description to school for lunch. Children’s lunch boxes are checked regularly. For more information, ask at the school office or speak to a teacher.


Make sure you keep up to date by checking out our school app and website, in particular, the calendar, as this will have all the latest information. School App If you have not already downloaded it, download free from Google Play Store: St Joseph’s Catholic School Fairfield. The app allows you to send absentee notifications to school, receive alerts from school, gives staff email contacts, read the school newsletter and any other notices that may have gone home with the children. Simple and easy to use - download it today at

Mobile Phones

At St Joseph’s Fairfield cellphones are not permitted at school unless the parents have written a letter to the Principal outlining the purpose. If this is agreed, the cellphone will be powered off and left in the Principal’s office until the end of the day when it will be handed back as the child leaves the school grounds.


Sports Team Update

Primary School Sport is evolving with the latest research and Covid 19. Many of the major sporting codes have moved away from Representative teams and are focusing on participation and enjoyment. Locally we have lost Project Energize, a joint initiative between the Waikato District Health Board and Sport Waikato to get children out there and active. We have found post Covid the numbers have dropped with students participation. This has affected the number of sports teams that we have been able to field. A number of our students have missed out in being involved in a range of sports.

There are a number of sports that can be provided by clubs that will allow our students the opportunity to be involved in sport rather than missing out. Our local clubs have a huge amount of resources and funding available to them. They have expert coaches with world class experiences behind them.

There are some sports that don’t have clubs and the school will continue to provide opportunities for those students. Sports like Water Polo, Flipper Ball, Netball and Volleyball. St Joseph’s will continue to support the Saints Sports Club for Year 7-8.

We thank you for your understanding and support as we try to provide sporting opportunities for all our students.

Kia manaaki te Atua koutou katoa

Grant Stuart


New Sports Coordinator

Amy Bygrave has been appointed as the new sport coordinator. Amy has a wealth of experience and is familiar with the role.

As a school we would like to thank Michelle Peoples for her work over the years to ensure St Joseph's students could participate in team sports.

Any sports enquiries should be directed to:

Titans Futsal Club Enrolment

Registrations are now open for all players aged 7 - 17+ wishing to play Futsal for the Titans Futsal Club. Please email with your interest or query.

Titans play in the local WaiBOP leagues and enter teams in the U9, U11, U13, Junior HS, Senior HS & Senior divisions. Titans have a range of players from social through to representative players and have a focus on extending all players, regardless of current skill level, in a fun family like environment.

Titans will provide dedicated weekly training, administration and team coaches. Titans has an ongoing focus on developing futsal coaches so if this is something you are interested please feel free to make contact also. Any queries to Wezz Hendricks on 021 820 909


Waikato Regional Volleyball are running an Academy at The Peak, Rototuna for four weeks starting next week. This is to help beginners and improve players current skills.

For further information please contact for further Information.

Youth Development Program

The popular Youth ADP sessions are on again in Term1 - for girls and boys in Yrs 6-8 who want to learn more about the fundamentals of physical training. Mondays or Thursdays, 5-6pm starting 8 Feb. Sign up here

Saints Cricket:

I have confirmed 3 teams for this term already but I really need another 2 players as 2 teams have the minimum number of 9 players each.

Details are as follows:

  • Games are Saturday mornings 9am ( First game is 13th February- 27 March)

  • All gear will be provided.(you just need your own white pants and sneakers)

  • Cost is $40 per term.

  • The first 2 children registering to play will be placed into a team...sorry I can only take 2 more players.

  • Registrations close: Friday 5th February

Saints Basketball:

We are only having Socal Teams in term 1 this year. We will look to hold trials for a "Top Gold" team at the end of term 1 if enough players are interested in this option. If trials are held then this team will get to play in a higher grade together for the remainder of the year.

Details are as follows:

  • Games are played on Tuesday evenings (anytime from 4pm to 8pm)

  • Cost is $50 per term.

  • Teams have to have a minimum of 7 players to register and a maximum of 10. I will try and ensure all children get to play but numbers dictate what I can do.

  • Registrations close: Friday 5th February

Please email me on: to register your child's interest to play or if you have any questions asap.

2021 Term Dates

Term dates for 2020 are as below:

Term 1: Tue 2nd February - Fri 16th April

Term 2: Tue 3rd May - Fri 9th July

Term 3: Mon 26th July - Fri 1st October

Term 4: Mon 18th October - Thu 16th December

*Please note that School is closed Friday 4 February

The Teacher Only Days are:

· Term 1: Monday 8 March (Week 6)

· Term 2: Tuesday 8 June (Week 5)

· Term 3: Monday 30 August (Week 6)

· Term 4: Tuesday 26 October (Week 2)