St Marcellin taught the first Brothers ‘To make Jesus known and loved’. For Marcellin, and those who follow in his footsteps, Jesus is the human face of God encountered in three places:
At the Crib, where we encounter innocence, simplicity and gentleness and are touched by the situation of poverty and fragility of people, especially the least favoured.
At the foot of the Cross, where we find a God who shares the suffering experienced by humanity, and transforms these experiences. We associate ourselves with those who struggle for bread, justice and peace.
At the Altar, where we find a privileged place to enter into communion with the Body of Christ: to stand as one with all who are members and to deepen our relationship with the living presence of Jesus in our lives which subsequently leads to a deeper relationship with others.
Adapted from Water from the Rock, The Institute of Marist Brothers, 2007
The Marist teacher
St Marcellin was at once a realist and a visionary and it was in this manner that he instructed the first Brothers in their role as teachers. It is with this same appreciation of the privileged nature of the vocation that teachers at Joeys work with students to ensure an education that is of the highest standard and reflects the Gospel imperative of love of God and others.
St Marcellin’s words ring as true today in the 21st century as they did when first spoken:
“So love your students; fight ceaselessly against the indifference, weariness and annoyance their faults so easily arouse in you. Without closing your eyes to their defects, because you must correct them, keep in mind the same pleasant qualities they have, which deserve your attention. Look at the innocence which shines in their peaceful faces and unwrinkled brows, the naivety of their statements, the sincerity of their contrition even though it may not last long, the honesty of their resolutions even though they break them quickly, the generosity of their efforts, even though it is rarely sustained for long. Give them credit for the good they do and for the evil they do not do.”
Staff at Joeys are given opportunities to deepen their appreciation of the Marist Charism through programs such as ‘Footsteps 1', 'Footsteps 2’, ‘Schools of the Spirit’ and the ‘Faith Formators Colloqium’ facilitated by the Marist Ministries Office of the Sydney Province.
As a Catholic school the celebration of the Eucharist is central to College life. There are regular opportunities for the community to come together for prayer and liturgical celebrations. These include:
The Family Mass held once a term on a Sunday morning. This is a wonderful celebration and is attended by many local and country families.
Thursday weekly morning Mass – held at 8.10am and available for all students and staff.
Friday morning form Masses – held throughout the term enabling each year group to prepare and celebrate the Eucharist.
Boys who have not been confirmed are invited to take part in the preparation program offered by the College. The Sacrament of Confirmation is celebrated annually and is a wonderful expression and affirmation of the faith of both those who receive the Sacrament and the entire College family.
In conjunction with the liturgical life of the College and the formal Religious Education curriculum, all students take part in experiences to assist them in reflecting on the place of faith in their lives.
Students in Years 7 to 10 take part in reflection days which provide an opportunity for them to contemplate God’s role in their lives, deepen their friendships and focus on putting their faith into action.
These days are developed in conjunction with the content of the Religious Education curriculum.
In Term 1 students in Year 11 participate in a Ministry Day as part of their preparation for the Ministry Week they complete later in the year. During Ministry Week students commit to an extended period of community service where they are challenged to develop a more adult appreciation of what each of them can do to ‘help the weak to carry their burdens’ (Acts 20:35). This active witness to the message of Jesus and the social teaching of the Catholic Church is a critical component of the senior program at Joeys.
The Year 12 Retreat provides students with the opportunity to leave the everyday College routine and engage in a more intensive period of reflection on faith, life and relationships. The small group environment, the interaction with teachers and in particular the opportunity for quiet prayer and sharing at this critical stage of life is an experience that stays with the boys long after the year is over.