Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam.
St Augustine’s has achieved a silver certificate this year in the ‘Trowbridge in Bloom’ awards, so I have included here a picture, taken this afternoon, of some of our blooms, in front of our new Reception area. The new Reception has done much to make sure our staff and students are safe and secure, as have our new gates.
Our start of year Academic Mass took place this morning in the Sports Hall. At this whole-school liturgy, we offer all our activities of the year to the Greater Glory of God, and the staff renew their dedication to Catholic Education. In response to the question, “Will you do everything you can to make this a happy and welcoming community with Christ at its centre, where everyone will feel valued and loved?” the staff answered decisively, “I will!” My the Lord give us his blessing to keep this good resolution.
Today is the Feast day of St Matthew, one of the apostles of Christ, and traditionally the author of the first Gospel. Matthew was a corrupt tax-gatherer who was called personally by Christ, at once becoming a disciple and making reparation for his financial wrong-doing. At Mass Fr Tom made the point that we are all known by name, called and loved by God. Direct contact with Christ can radically transform our lives, even in the most unlikely situations, and or conversion leads to action – practical love of our neighbour and the motivation to make amends for our faults.
This week there have been two more parental engagement evenings, for KS4 and KS5 (Sixth form). I’m pleased to have had the opportunity to meet many more of our parents. One of the ‘secrets’ of the success of St Augustine’s is the commitment and engagement of the parental body, who choose the school, support the school wholeheartedly, and help their children to make the most of the opportunities offered.
I was interviewed by a reporter from The Wiltshire Times on Tuesday, and I’ve just seen this week’s edition – I’m on page 9. As the reporter rightly observes, I am settling in well, and there is excitement about the new term for the Head and pupils.
Next week Year 7 has its first Retreat days at the St John’s parish centre. Mrs Parsons has told me that the year group is doing well so far, with few exceptions. 26th September is also the European day of languages, so I’ll bid you, au revoir, auf wiedersehen, arriverderci, and valete omnes until next week.