St Joseph’s Primary School - O'Connor
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Boronia Drive
O'Connor ACT 2602

Phone: 02 6248 9818
Fax: 02 6247 1792

Week 8 Term 4 2023 Newsletter

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Week 8 Term 4 2023 Newsletter

    Dear parents and carers, 

    This week, I had the joy of attending my son’s Year 12 Graduation. It was a remarkable experience for many reasons, but one in particular that struck me throughout the service. As parents, we take every care to support and provide for our children to ensure they are happy and healthy. Admittedly, sometimes this support and care may not take the form they want when we say no or have boundaries that challenge their individual voice, but that is what being the parent is about. However, parents provide the foundation upon which our children go on to form their own lives. Being surrounded by the other parents at the Graduation, I believe all we want is for our children to be ready to take the next step, to use that foundation they are provided to take on the world that lies ahead. Thank you for the great foundation that you as parents give to your children; before you know it, they will be using it to leap into their own life.

    The Graduation also highlighted the trust that is placed in teachers and schools to support this foundation provided by parents. Thank you for the trust that is placed in us at St Joseph’s. As our year draws to a close in the coming weeks, we too will have the opportunity to farewell our Year 6 students, and to ‘graduate’ all of our students onto their next year of schooling. Each of these moments, further strengthen the foundation we seek to provide our young people.

    School Board and P&F

    This week brought to a culmination our School Board and Parents and Friends Association (P&F), two vital parent bodies that have wonderfully served the St Joseph’s community for many years. Over the past 18 months, the Archdiocese has undertaken a review of School Boards, Community Councils and P&Fs, from which came the recommendation for all schools to transition to a School Community Council. Our School Board and P&F have been collectively involved in this review and have begun planning for the introduction of the new parent body.

    From the start of 2024, the St Joseph’s Community Council will encompass the work previously undertaken by the School Board and P&F. As part of this change, I am excited about the opportunity to welcome all parents as members of the community council, to be actively involved in building our school community and setting new directions. Further information about the St Joseph’s Community Councill will be provided in the coming week.

    I wish to thank all who have given of their time to the School Board and P&F in recent years. We are blessed to have parents able to engage directly in decision making and taking the lead to ensure we have a great school community. I greatly value the energy and support they each have given.

    Christmas Carols

    Christmas_Carols_Berwick_Church_of_Christ_event_1024x569.jpgOn Wednesday 6 December from 6.00pm all the school will come together to celebrate the Christmas season, with our classes each performing a couple of songs and then a whole school sing along. Please come along with a rug and a picnic to celebrate as a community. (A flyer will be sent home with students today).

    P&F Contributions


    One aspect of the P&F is community fundraising, and it is important to know that these efforts directly support the students and the school. In recent weeks, the P&F have made further contributions to assist with the purchase of class sets of novels in Years 3 – 6. These will be used to undertake novel studies that align with the new Catholic Education English scope and sequence. At the same time, the P&F ensured our canteen, the Snack Shack, is equipped with a Thermomix which Julie-Anne tells me is like having another pair of hands to get the cooking done! Thank you to the P&F, and to all parents, for the ongoing support of our school.

    Mass Times

    The inner-north parishes of O’Connor, Watson, Campbell, and Dickson are continuing to review their current structure and the pastoral needs. We are blessed to have Fr Thonn here in our parish and are looking forward to planning ahead for 2024 with him as our parish priest. As part of the changes across the inner-north parishes, from Sunday 3 December, the Sunday Mas time will be 8.30am.

    Christmas Mass Times

    Christmas Eve - Sunday 24 December

                Vigil Mass – 6.00pm

                Carols – 8.30pm

                Christmas Mass – 9.00pm

    Christmas Day – Monday 25 December

                 Mass – 9.00am

    School Photos

    The 2023 school photos were sent home earlier in the term. A reminder that sibling photos were also taken and are now available for purchase from the school Front Office for $15.

    Kid-Free Night


    Christmas edition - Friday 1 December. Bookings now open via Qkr! FINAL REMINDER

    This is an opportunity to drop the kids off at school for a couple of hours on Friday evening 1 December, with Camp Australia and P&F volunteers doing the supervision while parents can get some shopping done (or perhaps finding a chance to catch up with each other).


    Have a great end to the week.

    Yours in Christ,
    Read Less

    Prayer and Worship

    Last Thursday we began the season of Advent at St Joseph’s with a Prayer Celebration on the theme of Hope led by 1 Purple. 

    An important tradition at St Joseph’s is the Advent liturgical dance. This year we are blessed to have new robes made specially for us by Mrs Fletcher’s mum, Bethwyn.

    This week we will continue our Advent preparations with our Prayer Celebration is led by 2 Yellow on the theme of Peace.

    Advent is a time of preparing for Jesus’ birth and the celebration of his birth at Christmas. In family life, we try to prepare ourselves for many future things: our next holiday, our children’s education, our retirement. We are careful not to allow ourselves to be caught by surprise so that we can handle any challenges our family may face. Today we are reminded that we are called to be just as attentive and alert to the coming of the Son of Man so that it will not catch us unprepared. This means attending to our family’s spiritual life as carefully as we attend to other important family matters.

    As you gather as a family, talk about a time when you received surprise visitors at your house, perhaps a neighbour who stopped by or a relative who arrived unannounced. Was your household prepared to receive this unannounced guest? What might your family have done differently if you knew ahead of time that this visitor was going to arrive? Jesus told his disciples that no one knows when the Son of Man will return, except the Father. Read with your family what Jesus told his disciples in today’s Gospel, Mark 13:33-37.

    During Advent, we not only prepare ourselves to celebrate the birth of Jesus, we also check to see if we are doing all the things that will keep us ready to receive Jesus when he comes again. Talk about how your family can recommit to daily prayer, reading Scripture, and staying faithful to God’s commandments. Pray together that through this Advent season your family will be more prepared to receive Jesus when he comes again. Read as a concluding prayer Paul’s words to the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 1:3-9) or pray the Lord’s Prayer.

    Term 4 Prayer Celebrations and Class Masses

    Week 8      Thursday 2.15pm  Advent Prayer Celebration led by 2 Yellow

    Week 9      Thursday 2.15pm  Advent Prayer Celebration led by 1 Teal

                      Wednesday 6pm Christmas Carols

    Week 10    Monday 12.00pm Thanksgiving & Y6 Graduation Mass

                     Tuesday 2.15pm Year 5 and 6 Leadership Ceremony

        Thursday 2.15pm  - Advent Prayer Celebration led by 2 Magenta

    Social Action and Justice

    St Vincent de Paul Christmas Appeal is the time to share all the wonderful Christmas cheer at St Joseph’s with those who are less fortunate than us. To help those in need we will be participating in the St Vincent de Paul 2023 Christmas Appeal. The Christmas Appeal was launched last week and we will conclude on Friday 9 December. Each class has been provided with a hamper for children to place their donations. We are encouraging all families to donate suitable food with your children on multiple occasions. 

    For families wishing to provide a gift for specific families in our area there will be a giving tree in the front office at both the ELC and school. These giving trees will have gift tags with the age and gender of people in the O’Connor and Lyneham area that are in need this Christmas. If families would like to donate a gift, adults are invited to take a tag, and tape it to the wrapped gift before placing it under the giving tree. Suggested gifts are included with the gift tags. If purchasing gift cards please give them to the office for safe keeping.

    2023 St Vincent de Paul Christmas Appeal Donations

    Foundation White

    Nibbles: nuts, dried fruit

    Foundation Red

    Dessert: Zooper Doopers, Ice Magic, jelly

    1 Teal

    Sweet Treats: chocolates, lollies/confectionery, candy canes

    1 Purple

    Sweet Treats: ginger bread, shortbread, chocolate biscuits

    2 Magenta

    Dessert: tinned fruit – berries, mango, peaches

    2 Yellow

    Dessert: tinned fruit – plums, cherries, fruit salad, passionfruit

    3 Black

    Marinated antipasto- olives, sundried tomatoes, smoked oysters

    3 Navy

    Sauces: cranberry sauce, apple sauce, mint sauce

    4 Green

    Dessert: brandy sauce, UHT custard, UHT cream

    4 Gold

    Dessert: fruit cake, fruit pudding, fruit mince pies

    5 Blue

    Drinks: Coke, Fanta, Lemonade, Pepsi

    5 Orange

    Drinks: orange juice, apple juice, pineapple juice

    6 Silver 

    Savoury Treats: Crackers, chips, corn chips

    6 Lime

    napkins, bon-bons, decorations

    Pope’s Prayer for November

    Jesus Christ, Good Shepherd.

    When Peter was a prisoner,

    the Church prayed incessantly for him.

    They were aware that their prayers sustained him.

    We ask you today to pray for the Pope, to pray

    for what he carries in his heart, and to pray for what worries him.

    Increase in us our love for the Church

    and the acceptance of the discernment

    of the Bishop of Rome who presides

    over the communion of all the churches.

    From his universal gaze, he helps us

    to recognize the action of the Holy Spirit.




    Recently we have had some of our older children seeking to be Baptised. A big congratulations and official welcome to Ryan M, Zach B, Aidan and Florence J on their Baptism and formal initiation into the Catholic Church. May they receive God’s grace and may the Holy Spirit dwell in them. 


    Would you like to know more about the sacrament of Baptism?

    St Joseph’s Parish celebrates Baptisms for children and infants on the first and third Saturday of every month. Attendance at one family preparation session prior to the Baptism is an important part of this formation.

    Preparation Sessions Occur:

    1st Wednesday of every month - 5pm – St Joseph’s Parish Centre

    3rd Wednesday of every month – 1pm – St Joseph’s Parish Centre

    Baptism Celebrations (multiple families) Occur:

    1st & 3rd Saturday of every month - 11am – St Joseph’s Church

    To enrol in the baptism sacramental program please email,au with your preferred preparation session time. Once your preparation session is confirmed, Father Anthony will guide you through the rest of the process. 

    Yours in Christ,

    Melanie Stratford

    Religious Education Coordinator

    Read Less

    Sustainability in Action

    Coming this Friday, Changemakers present:


    “ An early morning walk is a blessing for the whole day,”- Henry David Thoreau

    Ryan McGee

    Sustainability Coordinator

    The Snack Shack

    Hi parents and families,


    Some very exciting news during the term, the Snack Shack was given a brand new TM6 Thermomix with extras from the P&F! Thank you, this is an extremely generous addition and will be used frequently.


    Some friendly reminders now the end of the school year is fast approaching:

    - The Snack Shack menu will be changing based on what stock is available. Whilst I will continue to order up to the last week, some items may run out and will not be replaced to avoid excessive stock sitting over the holidays.

    - Has your child brought home forks or tea spoons that may not match your set at home? It may belong to the Snack Shack! We are running very low on forks and teaspoons, if they can be sent back in before the end of term that would be great. Also a reminder to the kids, if they have a lunch order please don't throw your plastic containers in the bin, drop them in the tub to be washed.


    The last day of school (Thursday 14th December) will be a sausage sizzle! The cut off date for ordering will be Tuesday 12th of December. 



      Uniform Shop News

      Congratulations to the Week 8 award recipients. 

      Foundation Red

      Aiden O-R

      Florence J

      Mereani T

      Foundation White

      Kobi P

      Ameya M

      1 Purple

      Amelia B

      Michael H

      Danny V

      1 Teal

      Joel S

      Daniel A

      Christina T

      2 Magenta

      Melissa B-A

      Ishane D

      Kathrine M

      Mia M

      2 Yellow

      Jackson B

      Stella M

      Nicholas G

      Wallace B

      3 Black

      Joseph M-G

      Beatrice J

      Ivy E

      3 Navy

      Charlee F

      Tilly M

      Tshering Y

      4 Gold

      Patrick M

      Leilani T

      Gonzalo O-H

      4 Green

      Marial W

      Sophia T

      5 Blue

      James M

      Astrid P

      Bonnie P

      5 Orange

      Anna S

      Bailey S

      Clementine S

      6 Lime

      Eoin S

      Georgina G

      6 Silver

      Tejas G

      Kayla N


      Henry W

      Happy birthday to these students who celebrated their birthday this week:


      Rudy M
      Jackson M
      James W
      Parker N
      Diya H
      Sahana B
      Ignatius O
      Remy U

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