The day began with optional Mass which was concelebrated by 3 Old Collegian priests (Ken Boland, Pat Harvey and Peter Ferwerda). Our congregation participated very enthusiastically and were ably led musically by another Old Collegian; Br Michael Herry, who writes his own ecclesiastical music.
College Principal, Mark Murphy then led an informative and entertaining tour of the school assisted by some current students. It is quite exciting and moving for many of our Old Collegians to see their and their peers names up on Honour boards etc around the school, as well as old photos.
All of our guests then partook of a cool drink out in the beautiful sun on the Functions Room balcony where a fantastic view of Marcellin’s playing fields was enjoyed. There was much chat and mingling as men discovered long lost friends and tried to put a few bald heads and hairy faces to the young blokes they last saw!
It was actually quite moving for us to view the excitement displayed by many as they viewed the guest list and realised some old mates were in attendance. It was also very telling to welcome back to the College some men who had not been here since leaving at the end of their last year. For some it was quite emotional and speaking to one in particular at the end of the day, a very worthwhile and cathartic exercise.
Happily we look forward to welcoming them back next year with brothers in tow!
Our guests were then welcomed by Mark Murphy, grace was said by Fr Pat Harvey and everyone proceeded to enjoy a beautiful roast dinner accompanied by wine and beer. There was much chat and catching up over lunch…a really great feel in the room.
Michael Derum (OC ) introduced two Old Collegians as guest interviewees. John Paphazy (OC ) and John Zika (OC ). These two gentlemen spoke to the audience about arriving at Marcellin in the 50s as immigrants, and the difficulties and challenges faced back then. They then talked about their lives since leaving the College and the fascinating paths they have respectively followed in their very different careers.
We then presented many of those present with a special commemorative ‘Marcellin Fifty Years’ pin. We at the Foundation felt it would be a great gesture to recognise the ties and history we have with our Old Collegians. We hope that receiving one of these pins is a meaningful occasion, and we look forward to welcoming our next 50 years contingent next year.
The Foundation very proudly presented the lunch guests with our very first hard copy edition of our publication ‘Foundation News’. This will be going out to our community so keep an eye out.
One of the important aspects of the book is the discussion as to the importance of the Foundation in relation to the St Marcellin Champagnat Bursary Fund. The Foundation’s main focus (as well as working toward a whole community feeling via various channels) is to raise funds for this Bursary Fund.