An unreflected life is not worth living – Socrates
Last week our Year 12 students journeyed to L’Hermitage – The Marist Retreat Centre in Mittagong for their annual retreat. By definition, a retreat is an act of moving back or withdrawing, but what exactly are the boys withdrawing from? In the busyness of their day-to-day lives, amidst the pressures of the HSC, work and sporting commitments, the students had an opportunity to stop, to think about their own life, their relationships with each other, their family and also their relationship with God.
I often ask my classes how often do we get a chance in this day and age just to stop without distractions? When is there a time without checking on how many ‘likes’ we have received on Facebook or reading and sending text messages to each other? Not often. So in a special way, the Retreat allows boys the space, the environment and a wonderful context to check in with themselves at this important stage of their life journey.
I would like to commend the boys who wholeheartedly embraced the retreat process. They were open to ideas and were comfortable in questioning and reflecting on what was presented to them. It truly was a pleasure being on retreat with them.
I would like to thank the many staff who accompanied the boys on retreat. Mr Tony McDonell, Mr Patrick Fitzgerald, Ms Carolyn O’Brien, Mr Peter Sherringham, Mr Zac Pedicini, Mrs Jane Rorke, Mr Tony Duncan, Mr Nick O’Regan, Ms Gabi Nicholson, Ms Amanda Conde, Ms Philipa Tlaskal, Mrs Vicky Drivilas, Ms Rochelle Eggins and Mrs Linda Hutchinson. The retreats could not function without their generosity and support, but as I said to the boys, they do it because they care about them. How wonderful it is that pastoral care is so strong here at Marist College North Shore.
As I said at the beginning of this article, ‘An unreflected life is not worth living.’ This retreat has offered the boys a chance to reflect, and allowed them to realise, in the words of the Prophet Jeremiah, that they do indeed have ‘a future full of hope’.
Director of Faith Formation