Student Spirituality

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At Our Lady Help of Christians Primary School, we acknowledge the innate spirituality of every child. Opportunities to nurture their spiritual growth are planned for and provided through a variety of experiences. These connect children to a faith community, give them a sense of security and belonging and remind them that they are deeply loved.

We strive to guide students toward living responsible and just lives by teaching and modelling the Gospel values of love of others through compassion, forgiveness, tolerance, advocating for justice and service to the poor and marginalised.

At Our Lady Help of Christians, we encourage students to develop their whole selves, treat others fairly and respectfully, be responsible for their actions, and follow moral and ethical principles. We strive to activate this through opportunities to celebrate and learn about the Catholic faith through Religious Education classes, daily prayer, retreats and reflection days, liturgies and Mass.

At Our Lady Help of Christians, we incorporate programs that build upon and complement the Catholic Schools Office Student Discipleship Continuum from Year 4 - Year 12. The sequential and age-appropriate continuum provides students with intentional faith-filled opportunities where they feel free to discuss and develop their faith.

Students can experience school and Catholic Schools Office programs such as:

Accedere Year 4 Retreat

Having completed the Sacraments of Initiation in Year 3, the purpose of this activity is to invite Year 4 students to a retreat day that focuses on the theme of ‘friendship in Jesus’. Developed by the CSO, this program is provided to schools to implement with their Year 4 cohort. Primary schools often engage the support of the Youth Ministry Officers (YMOs) to assist school staff in delivering the program. 

Exuro Year 5 Retreat

Exuro is a Student Discipleship Retreat Day for Year 5 students held in each of the five regions of the diocese. Year 9 CSYMA student leaders facilitate small group discussions and activities. Formed parish school staff now convene these retreats. 

Incitare Year 6 Retreat

A one-day retreat for Year 6 students using various group processes and student-led discussion. Students will experience faith-nurturing activities and skilling for being faith leaders in their respective schools. It is intended that this cohort of students will build capacity and feel inclined to take up a position in the secondary school Youth Ministry class using the CSYMA program.

Making Jesus Real

Making Jesus Real (MJR) is a way of life, Christ’s way.

It is about bringing the Catholic faith to life for our students by showing them how to live it every day. We give them the tools they need to feel the Spirit of Jesus each day and to find the God moments that are always happening around us.

Students use MJR journals to support them in understanding how to live like Christ and how each of us is called to be the face of Jesus to those we meet. Further, students in our Mackillop Youth group create resources and promote MJR within the school community.

At each assembly, students who are showing Christ values or being the face of Jesus are awarded MJR awards, with some students who consistently are the face of Jesus receiving a special Face of Jesus award and a WESTIE wristband.

MacKillop Youth

The aim of Mackillop Youth at OLHC is to build a culture of discipleship and form students to be servant leaders and witnesses to faith.

This is actioned by providing opportunities for students to make a difference in the world through:

  • Modelling upon St Mary MacKillop and the Charism of the Sisters of St Joseph to guide us in our life of service.
  • Promoting MJR in our school and supporting other students to follow the example of Christ
  • Creating awareness and knowledge of Catholic Social Teaching and of our missionary call to service.

The students who are members of Mackillop Youth meet each fortnight with a group of teacher mentors to learn about Mary Mackillop and the sisters of St Joseph, to develop ideas and strategies to promote MJR in our School and to create awareness of issues through fundraising and other activities.

Mackillop Youth builds the leadership skills of our students in Years 3-6.

Further to the Continuum are:

Schools of Prayer - In nurturing a proper understanding of the role of prayer in the faith life of students, a prayer focus is developed to assist age-appropriate parish school engagement in prayer experiences. The main forms of prayer that have been promoted in Catholic Education are the traditional forms and the Rosary, Awareness Examen, Lectio Divina, and the contemplative prayer of Christian Meditation.

Music Ministry - Wildfire, the Diocesan Worship team, offers whole school evangelisation to primary and secondary schools under the banner of Proclaim Lismore and the Ten: Ten Experience.

Digital Ministry - Quality communications are available in the Proclaim Lismore Student digital platforms featuring Facebook and Instagram, with a focus on evangelisation of youth, praise and worship, and youth ministry digital networking (YouTube; Vimeo).

Sacramental Preparation - Schools work collaboratively with parishes to support students preparing for their Sacraments. This may take the form of a school-based program of preparation or support for a parish-based program.