“Charity Fulfils the Law”
At assembly on Monday, some of our Year 11 students led us in prayer. Their message was a reminder about our college motto “Charity Fulfils the Law”.
We often omit to think about the real meaning of charity. Charity, for many of us, has been in the context of charity shops, being told as children to ‘be charitable’, and the adage ‘charity begins at home’ – in effect, being kind. However, as the year 11 students told us, charity comes from the Latin ‘caritas’ meaning love, and they pointed out that our motto reflects one of Jesus’ commandments ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’ and therefore, ‘Love fulfils the Law’. We aim to do this through our three core values – commitment, community and compassion.
Charity and kindness is a value promoted throughout the world and aid agency campaigns, and ‘givealittle’ crowdfunding examples are all excellent ways of being charitable (kind) to others. Our challenge as a Catholic school is to love as Jesus did. This puts charity into a whole new perspective and indeed, love does need to begin at home and school and in our own community - love that does not differentiate by wealth, gender, race, age, physical attributes, attitude or lifestyle. Love, as taught by Jesus, is hard work and it means we can’t pick and choose who deserves our love. We are asked by Pope Francis to be merciful in this Holy Year of Mercy; let us think carefully about how we show charity - love in action.
Mother Teresa said: "To truly give charity, you must be free of selfishness!"
With this in mind, it was very humbling to see so many of our students putting their hands more deeply into their pockets on our Fijian day on Wednesday. Although we asked for a donation of $2 per student, we raised over $1000 to give to Caritas, the Catholic aid agency, which is working hard in Fiji at present. Thank you all for giving more than asked to support these people who need our love.
Tomorrow the staff will farewell Mrs Ruth Low at a function to celebrate her 30 years of service to St Peter’s College. Ruth is looking forward to retirement and time to be spent with her husband, Ross, and children and grandchildren in Invercargill. Thank you, Ruth, for the love in action you have shown to so many students during your time at St Peter’s. We wish you all the very best for a well-deserved retirement.
On Wednesday is the Eastern Primary Schools Athletics competition, followed by the Southland Secondary Schools Athletics on Friday. We wish all the competitors from St Peter’s all the best as they compete with commitment in these events and thank you to the staff and parents who are assisting on these days.
Thank you also to the large number of parents, staff, students who organised and contributed to the Fight for Flight boxing event last Saturday night as well as ex-students and parents who put themselves in the ring! We have been overwhelmed by the number of positive comments relayed from members of the community about the flawless organisation of this event and the way the students conducted themselves while attending to the 600 people who attended. Special mention must go to Jon McDowall and Chris McIlwrick for their organisation and to Jude Taylor for coordination of the meal – this was a huge undertaking perfectly executed.
Wishing you all a weekend full of ‘love in action’.