In wisdom and love
you created our earth
to sustain us and give us life.
We turn to you now
in faith and hope,
asking you to look with favour
on our fire-ravaged and drought-stricken land,
on our starving and displaced animals,
on our failing crops and burning
farms, towns and forests.
Strengthen, sustain and give new heart
to our farmers and to all who are affected by drought,
be with those who support them.
Strengthen and comfort the victims of the fires,
those who have lost family, friends, property and stock.
Protect our volunteer firefighters and all members of essential services.
In your loving providence,
send abundant rain to quench the fires and to restore our parched earth.
God of all compassion inspire us to act
in the way of Jesus Christ your Son.
May we each be awakened to the cries of our common home.
Lord the giver of life:
Renew your people;
Renew the face of the earth.
Saint Dominic and Saint Catherine – Pray for us.
Happy New Year to all Siena families and members of the broader Siena community. Whilst very much aware of our fire ravaged land, as well as current fears regarding the coronavirus, we begin our academic year with great hope and joy. We do so as people of faith and as people who work with young people, each showing us the joy of living the precious gift of life.
Last week I was delighted to meet new Year 7 students and all Year 12 students as they returned. This week we were joined by Years 8 – 11 and I have greatly enjoyed seeing the full college community in action as classes commenced. My thanks to student leaders and staff who have warmly welcomed all new students and staff to Siena, myself included. I have discovered firsthand that Siena College is a warm and welcoming environment with a firm commitment to inclusion, truth seeking and excellence in every endeavour. So much of this has been shaped by the rich Dominican history of the College and those who have gone before us in stewardship of all that we now enjoy and carry forward. I thank Mrs Robson Garth and so many others who have led with such vision and dedication; may we who continue their work be so graced with these gifts as we begin a new chapter. This year marks the 80th anniversary of Siena College. It is a wonderful opportunity for each of us to reflect upon and learn afresh all that Siena stands for and provides for young women in a new age. I encourage all members of the community to engage with the 80th celebrations across this year.
In this first newsletter of the year, you will read of our College theme and updates relating to the commencement of Learning and Teaching programs. You will also read important information regarding possible student reaction or distress regarding the bushfire season. It is possible that some families within our community were directly affected or even distressed by images portrayed. This can adversely impact a young person’s hope and optimism for the future. Please note an inclusion in this newsletter regarding how we might each support anyone impacted at this time.
We continue to closely monitor the latest updates regarding the novel coronavirus. All correspondence will be communicated via the Parent Portal.
Staff are prepared and excited to commence the school year in support of every young woman. These opening weeks are important ones, at school and at home, in establishing positive routines and high expectations for all. Together we commence this year with great enthusiasm and firm resolve to ensure learning and growth for all, in the Dominican way.