From the Principal
Fr Chris Riley’s Youth off the Streets – Brother to Another in Action
Dear St Edmund’s College Family and Friends,
Have you been following the news about the founder of Youth Off the Streets, Fr Chris Riley? I had the pleasure of meeting Fr Chris Riley in 2004. He was a guest speaker at a professional development day for school staff. At the time he had just returned from Aceh in Indonesia following the devastating Boxing Day tsunami. He went over there with students and staff from his Youth Off the Streets schools to help establish orphanages for the thousands of children whose parents tragically perished as a result of the natural disaster.
Youth Off the Streets was first opened in 1991 as a food van to feed the homeless youth living on the streets of the poorer suburbs of Sydney. It has since grown to an organisation that provides educational programs and counselling support for young people in crisis, operating six schools and educating more than 250 students. Fr Chris Riley has a simple but powerful formula to help the troubled youth who attend his schools. He says they each must commit to a program where they provide practical help for others, and says that the first step towards happiness and healing is made in the act of helping others. That’s why he went to Aceh after the Tsunami and why he brought with him students and staff from his schools to provide first line of help for the 30,000 orphaned children who were left behind. What started as a bold idea to help Aussie youth became a tent orphanage that eventually turned into the Children Care Centre Aceh. We pray that Youth Off the Streets continues to get the government support it so desperately needs to continue its life-giving work.
‘A Wonderful Evening of Amazing Talent’
These are the words spoken by an appreciative parent at last Friday ‘s Cultural Showcase Evening held in partnership with St Mary’s College and St Mary’s Primary School. This annual event, hosted by St Mary’s College, brought together the prodigious talents of students studying Creative Arts in music, visual arts, instrument, band and choir.
Thank you to Sallyanne Freney, Peter Kemp and Robyn Pozzias for coordinating the outstanding display of artwork from our Eddies’ young men.
Thank you to Tim Kirkwood, Jesse Gold and Frances O’Sullivan for the commitment given, allowing both the Eddies and St Mary’s students to perform so well. The talent on show was truly amazing and a credit to the instruction, care and presence that our teachers provide to give the boys these opportunities to shine on stage. Thank you, Tim Kirkwood, for your overall direction and coordination of the music program this year culminating in what was a wonderful evening.
Finally thank you to Chris Barton for his work with lighting and audio, without which the night would not have been such a great success.
AIC Athletics – 14 Years Champions for 2018
Congratulations to the eighty strong Eddie’s Track and Field team who competed in this year’s AIC Athletics’ Carnival. Our College was ranked 5th overall in what was a fiercely contested competition across the many disciplines. The Eddie’s 14 Years team were crowned Champions for 2018 in their respective age division. It all came down to a half a point difference separating first and second, underlining their outstanding achievement. The 15 Years team deserves praise for their overall third ranking.
Thank you to Chad de Waard and Nic Aldridge who managed, coached and coordinated our team for this year. Their time and effort resulted in the creation of a formidable team culture that inspired each individual athlete to strive to achieve his best on the day. It was gratifying to see our young men step in to fill the breach in several events to help in the overall team effort. It says a lot about the calibre of each of them individually but also of the team spirit that has been created under the direction of our coaching staff.
PHOTOS OF THE WEEK
This week I was given the dreadful news of a Catholic Principal colleague and friend from another diocese whose son passed away tragically last weekend. It is a tragedy that others have experienced and sadly an all too common phenomenon among our young men in Australia. May God’s grace be with this family as they mourn the loss of their ‘beautiful boy’. May we each be instruments of God’s love in our encounters with the young men in our lives. Live Jesus in our hearts, forever.
Diarmuid O’Riordan, Principal