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22 May 2015


From the Principal

As I write to you this week I am in the regional NSW centre of Dubbo, meeting with other Catholic Principals from NSW at our Biennial Conference. The Conference theme is ' Encounter New Horizons ' and focuses on the Catholic dimension of our roles in Catholic schools as well as the new horizons being faced in education more generally. Pope Francis in his writings, homilies and other conversations and speeches has certainly called on us all to reimagine the church and the way in which we live our lives as Christians. In particular he has urged us to encounter the person of the Risen Christ, to recognise ' the horizon of hope, a hope that does not disappoint because it is founded on the Word of God. A hope that does not disappoint, simply because the Lord never disappoints! He is faithful!'

In schools we are always looking for new and better ways to enhance our students’ learning. Much research in the last few years has focused on the importance of engaging students. There are many ways in which student engagement can be enhanced - by making learning relevant, by giving students opportunities to be involved in planning their own learning, by encouraging teamwork and collaboration and many more. Teaching students the skills, competencies and fluencies they need for the world they face both now and beyond school (often called 21st century fluencies) are also seen as important parts of what we must do in schools. The keynote speakers at the Principals’ Conference all emphasised in different way the new horizons which lie ahead for our students - new ways of working, new technologies, new roles which we cannot even imagine yet, and rapidly increasing volumes of data and knowledge. It is true that many children being born today will be alive in the 22nd century, as life expectancies grow with advancing medical treatments. We need to try to imagine what life will be like and prepare our students for the life that awaits them in the years ahead.

This Sunday is Pentecost Sunday, the day on which the Holy Spirit came to rest on very ordinary people, a group of women and men who had locked themselves away because they were afraid of being taken out and crucified as was their leader, Jesus.

Pentecost proclaims the Spirit who forgives, invites, inspires and makes a difference. The Spirit, who turns our lives upside down, transforming our fear and hesitation into action that changes the lives of those around us, is the Spirit we welcome into our lives today.

Holy Spirit, Divine Enabler of all ministry and mission,
who helped the first disciples fulfil their great commission,
who shaped their words when they preached among strangers
and gave them the courage to face all kinds of dangers,
come to us now, fill our imagination,
help us to share the story of God’s salvation.

(R. S. Watts, in A Lifetime of Blessing , compiled by G. Duncan, p284)

Maria Pearson

Bennies Buzz

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Mission News

In the evening of the first day of the week,
the doors were closed in the room where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews.
Jesus came and stood among them. He said to them, 'Peace be with you,'
and showed them his hands and his side.
The disciples were filled with joy when they saw the Lord, and he said to them again,
'Peace be with you.
'As the Father sent me, so am I sending you.'
After saying this he breathed on them and said:
'Receive the Holy Spirit.
For those whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven; for those whose sins you retain,
they are retained'.

This text, from the Gospel of John, is the text for this Sunday’s liturgy for the Feast of Pentecost. The Feast of Pentecost celebrates the coming of the Holy Spirit on the disciples of Jesus in the days after his ascension into heaven. The name 'Pentecost ' comes from the Greek phrase for the fiftieth day and at the time of Jesus the feast was known among the Jewish people as the Feast of Weeks. It commemorated the giving of the Torah on Sinai and is recognised among Jewish people today as 'Shavuot '. In Christian communities it recognises the occasion of the coming of the Holy Spirit - it is celebrated, in effect, on the fiftieth day after the resurrection.

The significance of this feast has been articulated in many different ways across the various Christian communities. Members of Charismatic or Pentecostal groups within Christianity place great emphasis on this day because of its association with what are often referred to as the charismatic gifts of the Spirit such as prophecy and speaking in tongues. In other Christian communities there is often a focus on Christian unity, ecumenism, interfaith dialogue and the universal Church. All of these related ideas draw their inspiration from the idea that the Spirit leads to oneness and unity among all Christians and ultimately among all people. It is the Spirit that draws people together as a human family and as a Christian community.

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The World Council of Churches recognises this dimension of the work of the Spirit by holding a week of prayer for Christian unity each year beginning on the day of Pentecost. Over the past decade or so leaders of the Catholic Church have sought to provide opportunities for visible witness to the unity in the Spirit. This has included a strong emphasis on the pilgrimage for young people known as 'World Youth Day '.

The next 'World Youth Day ' takes place in Krakow, Poland from 25 July to 1 August 2016. The Diocese of Broken Bay is organising groups of pilgrims to attend and Bishop Peter Comensoli has extended a special invitation to students currently in Year 10 to join him on a World Youth Day pilgrimage. In conjunction with the central experience of World Youth Day the Diocese is organising three pilgrimages: Krakow via Holy Land (Journey to the Holy Land), Krakow via Italy (Journey through Italy) and Krakow via Greece (Journey of Saint Paul’s Journey). The full experience of pilgrimage to World Youth Day with the Diocese of Broken Bay runs from 13 July to 5 August 2016. Visit the offical WORLD YOUTH DAY website for information and registration details.

Next week we will hold our our annual 'One World Week ' focus. This runs from Monday 25 May to Friday 29 May. This week is a combined project of our Environment and Social Justice Portfolios. During the week there will be a range of activities in classes and at lunch times. The major public event in this week is our annual Social Justice Forum to be held on the evening of Tuesday 26 May. The forum is open to MSB students in Years 10, 11 and 12. We expect to host about 200 students from approximately 20 other schools. The theme of the forum is 'Changing the Conversation' about refugees and asylum seekers. Students who have not yet registered should do so immediately. Registration details have been sent to students in Year 10, 11 and 12 via email.

Another important event of 'One World Week ' for 2015 is our Assembly on Wednesday 27 May in partnership with St Edmund's School at Wahroonga. During this term our Year 10 students have been working with St Edmund's students to prepare items to be performed at this Assembly and represents the culmination of a number of ventures with St Edmund's beginning with our SOJAD Program in Year 8 and including our lunch time Mentoring Program as well as this learning partnership in the Creative and Performing Arts area.

Paul Lentern
Assistant Principal Dean of Mission

Curriculum News

Year 9 Parent Teacher Evening

3.40pm - 9.00pm
Tuesday 2 June
College Hall

Parents have been emailed their username and password to access the online PTO (Parent Teacher Online) system. The system will close at midday on Monday 1 June. Parents wishing to make appointments after the close off will need to contact the College.

Students are requested to attend in school uniform with their parents.

We look forward to meeting you on the evening.

John Muskovits
Assistant Principal Dean of Curriculum

College News


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Tickets are selling fast. Purchase your tickets now to avoid disappoinment .

The Christine De Launey Year 7 Spellathon

Another nail-biting Spellathon is over with this year's champion Rebecca Chalmers, succeeding in her competition against other Year 7 students. Over the course of last term students were tested on 15 different words across five weeks. The students who make it to the finals are a select group having achieved perfect scores across each of the tests. The following students should be congratulated for their fabulous efforts achieving a place in the finals:

Therese Barbara, Elise Beldoza, Rebecca Chalmers, Rebecca Cheung, Esha Hatiskar, Alexandra Ho, Dinara Janaratne, Molly Koelmeyer, Mia Lui, Isabelle Manfe, Jacinta Mifsud, Amelia McKee, Amelie Skinner and Marily Syrmalis.

Some of the words students were asked to spell included: carbohydrate, influenza, theatre, bouquet and discrimination.

The final championship word was colloquial.

Photo: Year 7 Spellathon winner, Rebecca Chalmers with Mrs Fran Cunningham

Frances Cunningham

The Christine De Launey Year 8 Spellathon

Year 8 Spellathon winner, Rachel Wang (seated second from right) with finalists

We have a winner! Rachael Wang was impressive in her spelling ability, during the Spellathon final, but so were all the other finalists. It was a nail-biting finish to the competition, with such words as omnivore, prehensile and piranha failing to defeat the girls.

Congratulations to our class finalists: Dusana Barker, Sonia Bartolec, Elizabeth Chen, Caitlyn Dunk, Maria Fahmy, Catherine Kim, Catalina Mathews, Rima Nigudkar, Krupali Parmar, Maree Saba, Antonia Saul, Rachael Wang, Isabella White and Tammy Zaiter.

And special congratulations to Rachael Wang. Her winning word was 'abseiling'.

Gail Davey

P & F News

MSB Dinner Dance

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Bookings have now closed.

Please contact our Coordinator Christa (T: 0411 620 223 or E: if you have any queries or would like to reserve your seat.

Representative Sport

If your daughter has recently achieved outstanding sporting results please send me an email so that the College can share in her success.

BROKEN BAY Website: There is a new BBSSSA site under construction - we will advise when it is 'live'

NSW CCC Website:

Representative Sports Calendar

Representative Sports Calendar - 2015 Term Two


MSB Athletics Carnival - Homebush
Wednesday 3 June


NSW CCC Selections
Monday 25 May
Self nominated students


NSW CCC Championships - Eastern Creek
Friday 12 June
BBSSSA Representative Team


NSW ALL SCHOOLS 15 Selections
Friday 29 May


NSW CCC Selections
Monday 25 / Tuesday 26 May

Monday 15 / Tuesday 16 June

Broken Bay U13 and U15 Championships - Manly Vale
Thursday 18 June
MSB Junior/Intermediate Representative team


Y9/10 NSW All Schools Championships
Friday 12 June
(Y9/10 Rep Team)

NSW CCC Championships - Port Macquarie
Tuesday 16 June (Friday 19 June b/up date)

Students who wish to trial for sports that are offered directly through NSW CCC will need to nominate through the NSW CCC website. I encourage you to visit the NSW CCC website if your daughter is an experienced state level athlete in any sport.

Please remember that these are trials for State teams and as such students must be very experienced for their nomination to be approved.

Representative Sports Trials and Training

Representative Sports Trials and Training

Monday 25 May


Call Backs

Wednesday 27 May


Call Backs and Year 9s

Wednesday 27 May

Year 9/10 TOUCH

Training 3.30pm - 4.15pm

Wednesday 27 May

(in Hall)

Call Backs / Training

Thursday 28 May


Call Backs

NSW All Schools Swimming Championships

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A huge congratulations to Caitlin Walsh (Year 8) who won the Under 14 50m Breaststroke event on Monday at the NSW All Schools Championships earning herself a spot on the NSW team that will contest the Pacific School Games in Adelaide in November.

Our three Relay teams finished a very credible 4th, 4th and 5th in the State, behind many schools who have established sports scholarships and their own pools, so all in all a great result for our girls.

Good Luck

To Abi Cutin (Year 12) as she trials for the Open NSW CCC Basketball Team on Monday.

To Georgia Dean and Sasha Savenko both from Year 9 as they trial for the Under 15 NSW All Schools Netball Team as members of the NSW CCC Under 15 Team.

To Caitlin Crammond (Year 12), Alex Black (Year 10) and Grace Gibbeson (Year 10) who will compete at the NSW CCC Soccer Championships as members of the BBSSSA Open Team.

Karen Grant
Representative Sports Coordinator


Careers Information for Parents and Students

Lucy Elgood
Careers Advisor


The Canteen opens daily from 8.00am to 2.00pm.

MY STUDENT ACCOUNT - Cashless Canteen

Students may order and pay for purchases with our 'cashless' option using their Student ID card.
Cashless Canteen - Comprehensive instructions on how to use this system
Place a Canteen order .

Canteen Roster for the week commencing Monday 25 May






Lanie Fabian

Sharon Bradford

Kym Lamb

Katie Breatnach

Jennifer Fox

Pipina Varkas

Trish D'Amico

Teena Vicaretti

Kim Robb

Sonya Zeater

Karen Michie

Rose Lichaa

Please notify Melissa if you are unable to attend or you would like to be removed from the roster.

Mrs Melissa Arane
Canteen Manager

Community Notices

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Mount St Benedict College
449C Pennant Hills Road, Pennant Hills NSW 2120

Phone:  02 9980 0444
02 9484 4911

General enquiries

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