“If a man takes you to law and would have your tunic, let him have your cloak” Matthew 5: 38-40
Last Sunday’s Gospel reading from Matthew instructs us that “if a man takes you to law and would have your tunic, let him have your cloak”. We are asked to love our enemies and pray for those persecuting us.
As we begin our preparations for Lent, we should take this opportunity to reach out to our enemies and give generously to those in need. Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the Lenten period. Lent is a time to renew and restore our relationship with Christ. Lent is when we prepare as a faith community to meet the risen Christ at Easter. It is a time for us to turn away from what keeps us from living the Gospel, and to remind ourselves that we are called to live lives based on justice. In what ways can this be enabled and supported in the school community?
Each gospel concerns an encounter with Christ that challenged people to open themselves to God, to faith, to truth, to life. Catholic schools provide opportunities for such encounters throughout the year, but Lent demands a special effort. These opportunities might include:
- providing regular prayer and meditation sessions (daily or weekly, for individuals and groups)
- reflecting on the Lenten readings
- using images of the face of Christ for prayer and meditation
- ensuring every classroom, gathering space and public space contains an image or symbol that is not only a reminder of Catholic identity but an invitation to be open to Christ’s presence
- encouraging participation in Project Compassion, not just in donating or raising money but in opening our eyes to the suffering around us and making a compassionate response.
Lent is a chance to encounter Jesus, to remember again his invitation to chat, to come and see who He really is. It is a rich season for schools to look into the face of Jesus, not merely in our churches and classrooms with crucifixes and other images. Every encounter we have with a student, colleague or staff member can lead to a more profound realisation about our lives in Christ.
Over these 40 days, may the Holy Spirit give us the strength to act justly, the courage to love tenderly and the faith to walk humbly with our God, that we might rejoice in the triumph of God’s justice in Jesus at Easter.
It is essential that all students continue the year well and set high expectations in all areas and in every context. It is important that the College uniform is always worn well; that students are punctual to school and class and it means getting down to the core business of working hard in class and working with every teacher to produce the best set of results possible. I also remind students to challenge themselves to participate in the vast array of co-curricular activities available in the ‘Luminosity’ program and to embrace and contribute to the numerous, leadership, faith and social justice opportunities available at the College.
And finally, may all members of the Thomas Carr College Community in 2023 truly live, breathe and enact our wonderful College motto of ‘They Will Shine’.
Please view the Principal’s Video Message below:
Mr Jamie Madigan