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31 October 2014

From the Principal

This coming weekend we welcome our incoming Year 7 students and their parents. The students will sit the Allwell Tests which assist us in identifying students’ needs and placing students in classes. Parents will be introduced to a number of aspects of College life so that they will have a good understanding of what their daughters will experience when they commence at MSB next year. We value the opportunity to get to know new parents and to share with them some insights into the programs and opportunities which our girls enjoy.

Last week I mentioned the new College hat which will be compulsory in 2015 for incoming Year 7 students in Terms One and Four. The purpose of the hat is to provide protection from the sun. Students in other year groups are encouraged to order one through the Uniform Shop. The harshness of the sun in Australia is well known, as are the damaging effects it has on our skin. Students are to be encouraged to wear hats when they are in the sun, particularly during the middle of the day.

Over the next few weeks there are quite a number of whole school events, which form part of our total curriculum. Such events are planned to address important elements of learning for our students, in areas of mission and faith development, pastoral care and wellbeing, and subject-based academic learning. While some of these activities involve changes in daily routines, they form very valuable opportunities for us as a community. I want to emphasise how important it is for all students to be in attendance for these events, as we come together to celebrate the successes of the year, to remember key moments in our shared story, to reach out to others and to look towards the coming of Christ at Christmas. Of particular importance are Presentation Day on Thursday 4 December and our Thanksgiving Eucharist on Friday 5 December. I ask parents to ensure that your daughters are in attendance every day and are engaging fully with all activities.

This year through our prayers, assemblies, liturgies and activities we have focused on Peace, something which is relevant in our individual and community lives, but obviously is also a pressing need of our world. As we continue to pray for peace, I leave you with the traditional prayer of St Francis:

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy;

O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;

to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.

For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

Mrs Maria Pearson

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Mission News

This Saturday and Sunday, November 1 and November 2, are the feasts of All Saints and All Souls respectively.

These two feast days are thought provoking on a number of levels. Firstly, All Saints Day reminds us that we stand in the midst of a community devoted to the Gospel. While the traditional understanding of a saint is someone who has led a life of extraordinary religious character, the writings of St Paul suggest a broader meaning. St Paul regularly refers to 'the saints' in his writings and he clearly intends it to mean all those who seek to follow the Gospel as he himself is striving to do. By St Paul’s definition of sainthood, there are very many more saints in our midst than we might recognise. We are called upon to show reverence to the saints and in line with St Paul’s writings this means showing reverence to one another and not just to those individuals whose 'sainthood' is universally recognised. The message is similar to the idea of seeing Christ in others and seeking to treat them as if they were Christ himself.

The feast of All Souls provides us with an opportunity to reflect on those who have gone before us, to pray to God for them and to ask for their intercession to God on our behalf. In many ways, All Souls Day is an extension of a reflection of the Communion of Saints celebrated on the previous day. All Souls Day allows us to see the Communion of Saints extending back through time and connecting us with all those servants of God who have gone before us. It invites us to reflect on the idea of eternal life and to see our mortal lives as one element of a much bigger picture which is caught up in the eternal character of God and the everlasting life we hope to share with God and with our sisters and brothers who have passed from this life.

As we move into the month of November, and with the feasts of All Saints and All Souls in mind, we also begin to move into the last weeks of Ordinary Time in the Liturgical Calendar. With three Sunday Feast Days occurring in the month of November there is one more Sunday of Ordinary Time before the Feast of Christ the King and the beginning of the Season of Advent. It is always a somewhat unusual experience for us to be reaching the end of the school year at precisely the same time that the new year of the Church’s calendar begins.

While the end of the year is really very close, we still have much to do with our Hamper Appeal and Hamper Delivery Day, Mission Week events to help us focus on our House Partners and preparation for Carols on the Mount and our Thanksgiving Eucharist.

Programs such as Big Sister, Sisterhood, Step Up and Connect will wind up for the year over the next few weeks as will our work with Jamieson House, St Benedict’s Social Club and our tutoring with JCA and SPARKS. Our support of homeless people through our Vinnies Van service will continue through the holiday period with rostered events in both December and January.

Also, during December, we have a group of staff and students undertaking an immersion trip to the Philippines. They have been working hard for many months in preparation for the trip which has included a number of briefings and planning sessions as well as fundraising, medical checks etc. They will visit the Bacolod Pre-School run by the Sisters of the Good Samaritan as well as other significant organisations working for justice such as Bahay Teluyan in Manila and Laguna, the Young Christian Workers in Valenzuela, and PREDA in Olongapo. We wish them well as they go about the final stages of their preparation and we thank Mrs Donna Dempsey, Mrs Dominique Johnston and Mrs Maria Pearson for their commitment to this trip and the opportunity it provides for our students.

Mr Paul Lentern
Assistant Principal Dean of Mission


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Curriculum News

From the Studies Coordinator

In Assembly a couple of weeks ago Year 7, 8 and 11 students were presented with their Academic Awards for Excellent Semester One Reports. These students have demonstrated an excellent level of performance across all or most of their courses throughout Semester One. They have been described by their teachers as 'very diligent and highly committed to their learning'.

We congratulate the following girls:

  • Year 7
    • Jessica Barr, Elizabeth Chen, Maria Fahmy, Natali Kelava, Sophie Lovell, Natalia Reale-Bryant, Antonia Saul, Charlotte Turner and Rebecca Wood
  • Year 8:
    • Sabrina Croker, Khristiana Dadula, Emily Evans, Annabel Fisher, Kassidy Grant, Lani Hinden, Caitlin Kelly, Lauren Klauser, Lucy Koelmeyer, Jessica Kotzander, Vivienne Lee, Rachael Marren, Isabella Nati, Grace Nicholson, Kathleen Notohamiprodjo, Cassandra Obeid, Nicole Sandow, Emma Slee, Alana Sylvester, Daniela Taylor, Laura Trezise, Kyara Waaijer, Claire Ward and Paris Rose Yee
  • Year 11:
    • Laura Baker, Annabel Begeng, Annalise Blatchford, Rachel Cheung, Monique Cockram, Stephanie Frost, Hollie Johnston, Rebecca Koelmeyer, Abbie Lincoln, Sophie Parkes, Kristen Pollock, Chelsea Spokes and Carla Takchi

In the next few weeks Year 7 and 8 will be completing their final assessment tasks for the year and their final units for the year. Year 9 embarked on their first exam block this week and are to be commended on their committed approach to their studies and their efforts throughout the week. Year 10 have been revising and preparing for their exams which start next week. They are reminded to check their exam schedule, ensure they turn up 15 minutes before the start time, bring their equipment in a clear plastic slip/container and remember that these exams are just the final piece of their Year 10 Bennies puzzle. Year 11 are well into their HSC Courses and are preparing for their first HSC assessment tasks towards the end of term.

There are only three more days of HSC exams next week. Many of our students have now competed their final exams and will be switching off for a real holiday break. Exit day for Year 12 is Monday 10 November and students are reminded to be at school for Period One in the H block. They will complete an Exit Day survey before returning their laptops, selling books and cleaning their lockers.

I wish all students a productive and engaging last few weeks of the year.

Mrs Gabrielle Keats
Studies Coordinator

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Good Luck to our HSC Students

We would like to wish all our Year 12s the best of luck in their final HSC exams next week.

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Year 7 Religion: Ways People Pray

In Religion we have been exploring ‘Ways People Pray’ as our topic for this term. We have done many brainstorming activities and learnt many different ways people pray.

This week in Religion we went to the Blue Gum Forest and experienced an Awareness Examen which allowed us to meditate and reflect on our actions and thoughts. We all thought this was a great way to pray as we were in nature and creating a bond with God.

We followed with a liturgical movement to the Our Father which was another way people pray, many of us really enjoyed the experience. Afterwards our class sat on the hill in the Blue Gum Forest, closed our eyes and listened to the sounds of creation we could hear.

Overall we learnt a whole new way of praying to God!

By Madeline Said

College News

SRC Student Water Bottle!

On Monday, during Pastoral Care, the entire school body received Bennies first ever school drink bottle. In the year of Stewardship, the SRC portfolio ran a competition for the best design for our student water bottle. Based on this competition, the entire school voted online for the type and design of the bottle, which Subiaco 2 created.

Congratulations to the 2013/14 SRC captains Ellen and Alex, the SRC portfolio of 2014 as well as their mentor Miss Takchi, who worked tirelessly to have the student bottle created and distributed. We would also like to thank Leadership for their support. The student-driven drink bottle is a symbol of unity in our school which is now shared by all students and staff.

Hollie and Rechelle
2014/15 SRC Captains

Second Hand Book Sale for Year 10 students

The Book Sale will be held on Monday 10 November during Period 3 in Room H301 – H303, immediately after the Year 10 exams.

Only those text books listed on the current Years 11 and 12 booklists can be purchased. Any text book purchased does not have access to Digital Resources (E Books).

The Years 11 and 12 Book Lists will be on the College website shortly to ensure the books you are purchasing have the correct Title, Edition and Author.

The P & F require volunteers on this day, if you are able to spare a few hours on Monday 10 November, please contact Margie Drake on 0413 246 614.

Hillsbus Amendments to Current Timetable

Effective Monday 10 November Route 3604 from Beecroft Road will terminate at Bellbird/Oratava not Oratava/Aiken.

Route 3178 has been removed from the timetable. Students will be able to board Route 635 for travel to school. This bus will terminate at Beecroft Station and not travel to school.

Further information, including a map, can be found on the Noticeboard outside the Print room or via the HILLSBUS website .

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.


NSW CCC Website:

Broken Bay Wet Weather Line: 9990 3633

Representative Sports Calendar - Term Four


Australian All Schools Athletics Championships
Friday 5 - Monday 8 December
Carla Takchi (Y11), Amie Bowrey (Y7) and MSB U15 KO Team


NSW All Schools State Championships
Friday 7 November
MSB Year 7/8 Representative Team


Broken Bay Trials
Friday 21 November


Broken Bay Championships
Monday 1 December
MSB Representative Team

Upcoming Representative Team Training and Trials

Term Four Week Five

  • Monday 4  November  (Year 7/8)  Representative Touch training (lunch) with Mr Smith

NSW CCC Water Polo Championships

Pictured from left to right
Back Row - Genevieve Khoo, Rachael Fraietta, Jessica Marcer, Rebecca McGaw, Brianna Taylor.
Front Row - Olivia Doyle (Coach), Olivia Taylor, Ashleigh McDonald, Emily Michell, Madison Nicholson, Caitlin Harris.

It was great to have our MSB "Piranhas" back in action this week. This year we faced a new level of competition at the NSW CCC Championhips facing the best Catholic school teams in the State. Despite our tough games the girls again represented us with enthusiasm and it was a great experience for all.

Thanks to the parents who assisted with transport and cheered the girls on during the day.

It was also great to have former MSB student Olivia Doyle coach the girls on the day.

Here is a report on the day from team members Jessica Marcer and Rachael Fraietta:

Although it was a tough day at the CCC Water Polo Championships, we all had a chance to experience things out of our comfort zones. We were able to interact with other girls within our grade who we might normally see in our classes and together we improved our Water Polo skills and team work.

We encouraged each other when games were challenging so that we continued to work well as a team. Overall it was a very enjoyable day.


Experienced softballers who are interested in nominating for the 2015 Broken Bay Open Team should have emailed Mrs Grant to receive a nomination form and permission note.

Trials will be held at St Ives and students will need to organise transport to and from the venue with their parents. Nominations are due to Mrs Grant by Friday 7 November.

Good Luck

Good luck to our MSB Representative Year 7/8 Touch team who will contest the NSW All Schools Championships on Friday at Penrith after their terrifc win at the Parramatta Regional Championships last term.

Mrs Karen Grant
Representative Sport Coordinator

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Co-curricular Sport

MSB Netball

Thank you to all players, parents, coaches and managers who attended the MSB Netball Club AGM and Presentation.

The committee position of Junior Registrar remains VACANT and we ask that all parents consider taking on this vital role. This position needs to be filled prior to Registration Day or the Club cannot continue to function. Mentoring is available to assist you, so please contact the committee if you are interested.

The Club is also calling for volunteer managers and coaches (U15s and older) as well as umpires (must turn 13 in 2015) for next season. Please indicate your interest on the registration form or email the club.

Grading Day for the 2015 season will take place on Sunday 9 November at Pennant Hills Indoor Court.

  • Under 14s: 9.00am - 11.00am
  • Under 15s: 11.00am - Midday
  • Cadets: Midday - 12-1:30pm

All girls should wear trainers and bring a water bottle.

Registration Day – Thursday 5 February 2015 3.15pm - 5.30pm at the College

Download MSB Netball Registration Pack (includes Grading policy) here. Special consideration forms will be available on Grading Day.

The MSB Netball Club committee can be contacted via

Mrs Rebecca Lewis
Co-curricular Sport Coordinator

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Congratulations to Heidi Pfeiffer – Class of 2013

MSB ex-student (from the Class of 2013) Heidi Pfeiffer has been featured in the most recent edition of The Sunday Telegraph (Oct 26, 2014), having been awarded a $10,000 scholarship as a first year law student at the Australian Catholic University.

Heidi’s commitment to community engagement, academic merit and track record of leadership (particularly at MSB) helped pave the way to her receiving this scholarship.

Heidi plans to use the scholarship to help with her studies, and plans to pay it forward through a career in humanitarian law.

Read the full story. (Sunday Telegraph, October 26, 2014)


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 3 November






Grace Casserly

Helen Merhi

Natalie Conway

Jaye Harkin

Judi Crowe

Sinae Kim Rah

Marie Kirkham

Kay Munro

Rosie Lancaster

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

Fundraiser for MSB ex-student

In November 2013, MSB Class of '91 ex-student Sarah-Jane Staszak (nèe Elvin) went into Royal North Shore Hospital to undergo a ‘routine’ operation on a bulging disc in her neck. Unfortunately, she came out of that operation a quadriplegic.

A large network of family and friends are organising a fundraising evening to support SJ’s ongoing treatment and rehabilitation and are inviting support from MSB ex-students and current families.

Read more about SJ’s story or visit the GIVE IT UP FOR SJ website

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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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