Friday 7 September 2018


This has been a week where I’ve been in meetings seemingly non-stop. I can’t find anything really compelling to share with you about those meetings, but two non-meeting events from the last week really stand out.

First, in an effort to lead by example with regard to the sustainability of creation, we’ve equipped the staff with some new hot/cold thermal cups so that we can totally get rid of the disposable cups from our food services. Living toward a sustainable world is a challenge; it inconveniences us from what we are used to; it means we have to grow and change. Not just our actions, but in our disposition and our ideas. It’s not comfortable but we know, at a fundamental level, that it’s right.

Secondly, I took our sacristans out for a thank-you meal on Thursday night. This team of Year 12 men have served at our eucharistic and liturgical celebrations for the last year with very little recognition and thanks. Having just finished their trials, they were in a reflective mood as we dined. They talked about having feet in two worlds: the familiar world of their life here at Saint Ignatius’ College and the exciting but uncertain world of the future that they’re about to enter. They recognised that they have received much here, both in education and in community, ultimately discovering themselves here, but that now it was time to move forward and see who they are to become in relation to the wider world. Again, growth, knowledge of the right thing, moving forward, discomfort, but excitement were the themes that emerged.

These apply to all of us, not just the men of Year 12 or the sustainability of our shared environment, but we must all grow, change and adjust throughout our entire lives. The great thing about this community is that we never have to do it alone.


Sometimes, I swim with Dr Hine down at Balmoral at unreasonable hours of the morning. It’s so early when we’re there, but humans are there and the day is beginning to open up like a blossom, slowly unfurling itself. People swimming (me), kayaking, paddle boarding, fishing, taking pictures (also me) – so much diverse activity as people find a way to connect their actions with the meaning of their lives. And beauty reigns over it all. Where’s the beauty in your start to the day? Or the finish to your week?

Fr Jack McLain SJ