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Family and Faith

The Family and Faith program is an initiative of the Sydney Catholic Schools Office, Sydney, in response to the New Evangelisation agenda of the Catholic Church. By offering a variety of invitational events, information sessions and activities, the project aims to:-

  • strengthen the faith of parents
  • connect families with the religious life of the school and the parish
  • strengthen the relationships between the school, families and parish
  • provide further energy and support to families in the development of their child –spiritually, socially and educationally

Some of the Family Educator Initiatives at St Joan of Arc are:

SPaR - an acronym for Stop, Pray and Reflect - is a ten to fifteen minute break for parents held on Thursday mornings to take time after the rush of getting the family ready for school and off to work, to reflect upon the presence of God in their lives. The content presented and shared invites the participants to draw parallels between the message of the Gospel and their own life experiences, discovering the relevance of our faith in daily life.

Tender Tales on Tuesday Afternoons before pick up - this is story telling time for toddlers. Each story chosen has a faith message attached to it and the toddler’s parents can get time to have a coffee and a catch up together while their children listen to a story and then do some craft.

Parent Excursions - so far we have had a tour to the Art Gallery of NSW for a “Morning of Mindfulness” using the paintings as stimulus for spiritual reflection. We also recently attended a “Refugee in My Neighbourhood” simulated tour of a refugee camp at the Centre for Community in Auburn . We heard first hand the personal stories of asylum seekers and refugees. Earlier in the year parents also shared a meal cooked by the refugee clients of the House of Welcome in Carramar . This is a non profit charity that the school regularly fundraises for , in line with the Sisters of Presentation charism which asks us to look after the needy in our local neighbourhood.

Parental Participation in Liturgies and Masses - We aim to bring the parents into the faith life of the school by asking them to participate in liturgies. Year 3 Parents enacted the Passion for us this year in the church and some Year 4 parents performed in a band for the Resurrection Liturgy.

Sacramental Art Workshops - Year 2 have made “Alleluia Bags” with their parents for Easter and “Good Deed Beads” for the Sacrament of Reconciliation. This is an opportunity for parents to be active participants in the sacraments of their children. Year 6 parents were invited to make personalised Confirmation Candles as gifts for their children and Clay Crosses were made by the Year 3 parents for their First Holy Communicants.

Guest Speakers for Parents are also organised. Recently Middle School parents were invited to attend a “Get Set for High School” workshop run by Sparks Education. It was very well attended.This partnership with parents to support family well being is also an important ethos of the Family Education Project .

Check under News and Events where we will post updates on what is happening on a regular basis.

So welcome to St Joan of Arc and we look forward to you joining this wonderful community and participating in all these initiatives.