CBC Fremantle | In Touch

Reflecting on Christmas

At the end of the school year we have the unenviable task of bidding farewell to colleagues who are moving on to other adventures in their journey. We will miss their friendship, camaraderie and talents, but they will always remain a part of CBC.

Mr Chris Pietroniro has been with the College for close to three years, working within the RE, PE and HASS departments. Chris is a CBC Old Boy and he has established a reputation as a fantastic teacher and mentor for our boys. He has been heavily involved in the sporting co-curricular programme at the College, and we wish him all the best for the future

Mr Nick Smith will leave the College after two years of service, as he is moving to Sydney with his family. Nick has taught primarily in the English department and his enthusiasm and approachability will be missed by the entire College community.

Mr Mitchell Di Virgilio has worked at CBC for two years in varying teaching roles including Information Technology, Mathematics and also within the College's Academic Care department. Mitch is a thoughtful young man whose passion for teaching will be missed by our boys.

Mr Damian Owen has spent 2019 working at CBC Fremantle on secondment from John XXIII College. He served as our Head of Rice House while also teaching Science and Religious Education. Damian's care to the students in his care has been greatly appreciated, and we wish him all the best for his future endeavours.

Mr Daniel Beaver and Ms Mara Hayes both complete short-term temporary contracts in Maths and Academic Care respectively, and we thank them for the efforts and contributions that they have provided during their time at the College.

Finally, Mrs Kerry Faichney and Ms Shelley Nodwell are taking leave for the whole of 2020, and Ms Emily Bowran will be away for Term 1.  We wish them all the best on this well-deserved break and look forward to their return.

We thank these wonderful people, and also every other member of our staff who have contributed to a year of energetic endeavor. We are blessed to be together here in this pocket of the world.

Relationships are critically important in a school, and at CBC we are fortunate to have a strong and inclusive community. I must say it is made easier by having families and staff who 'get it' and are on the same page, and a large part of this must be attributed to the College's faith tradition. We are unapologetically and transparently and wonderfully grateful followers of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, whose life lived in Gospel Values is our inspiration and hope. We know that all of our families appreciate the universal message of kindness, peace and love that is the basis of Christ's teaching, and we humbly acknowledge this as being the foundation of our relationships with each other.

Recently I had a breakfast discussion with my son Zack at the dining table. Over our muesli, I asked him what he was looking forward to about the impending Christmas break. I had assumed that he was going to tell me all about the presents he hoped to receive, along with not having to do homework and get up early! However, my young son's reply really caused me to stop and reflect. He said that he was looking forward to spending time as a family playing together, watching the Boxing Day test with me (no encouragement needed there) and seeing his cousins on Christmas Day. What struck me was that even as a 10-year-old, my son craved personal relationships more than anything else. If I am completely honest, a comprehensive list of X-Box games and sports equipment soon followed, but his primary yearning was to be with his family.

Zack's reaction caused me to deeply reflect over the meaning of Advent. We have just entered into this liturgical season, and essentially one of its main focuses is to prepare for the birth of Christ. A well known element of the nativity story describes the innkeeper telling Mary and Joseph that his inn was full and there was no room for them.  With that, the birthplace of Jesus became a stable filled with animals – a very humble beginning for our Saviour. I reflect on this point because for whatever reason, the innkeeper lost sight of human relationships that night. He chose property and convenience over people in need. As we prepare for the Christmas break, it reminded me of what is most important during this time. The opportunity to let Jesus, and our family and friends, into our lives and into our hearts. During Christmas, a time when society and consumerism can promote a false sense of happiness, my 10-year-old son centered me on the important things in life.

I hope all of our community has a wonderful Christmas break, filled with the love and joy of family and friends, and centred in Christ's love. On behalf of our Principal Mr Burgio and all of our staff, thank you for the continued faith and support that you place in us to care for your sons. CBC Fremantle is an amazing community and I feel blessed and fortunate to be a part of it.

Mr Neil Alweyn

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