Masses and liturgies are focal points of celebration in the faith life of the College. very much part of the life of students and staff at OLSH.
Liturgies, in the sense that they are presented here, are those opportunities for public worship that are outside the structure of the Mass. Liturgies provide opportunity for reading and reflection on a theme or reading from scripture, some time for listening to people break open the reading, and a chance for the group to present its own prayers of petition. These liturgies are prepared by staff and students and presented to the assembled body in the school context.
Masses occur quite regularly at school and campus level. The Catholic Mass is fundamentally an action of thanksgiving and is also referred to as Eucharist. At OLSH, Masses are prepared on a regular basis and involve our staff working with the officiating Priest (or Bishop) to conduct the Mass at school. Masses are celebrated on special occasions at each campus whether it be in relation to the Sacramental program, or to mark particular events in the campus calendars. Masses are very much part of the retreat programs at the various levels.
Each year, four full school Masses are conducted which involve all members of the school community, and are open to parents and visitors who wish to attend. It is common for the Bishop of the Northern Territory to officiate at such gatherings if available.
The Opening College Mass
The first school Mass marks the opening of the school year. Students from across the campuses are involved in the preparation for this mass as they are for all the school masses. A feature of this Mass is the entrance, as Year 12s process into the Mass centre with the new Transition students, providing the beginners with a small gift to mark the start of their life at OLSH. The final full school Mass at the end of the year sees our Transition students leading the year 12s out at the end of Mass, providing them with a little gift of thanks and farewell.
Founders Day Mass
Founders Day Mass is a special occasion marking the founders of the two Religious Orders which have been so much part of the College over the 80+ years of its existence. The founder of the MSC Priests and Brothers and the OLSH sisters is Blessed Jules Chevalier and the founder of the Marist Brothers is Saint Marcellin Champagnat. The contributions of both Orders, through their members, is acknowledged and celebrated, especially remembered at this time of the year.
Assumption Day Masses
All students attend a specially organised Mass in the OLSH Catholic Church. Three Masses are held on that day, as the Church is not big enough handle more than one campus. At least once each year the students have the chance to attend Mass in the Parish Church.
This Mass gathering marks the end of school life for our year 12 students. The Mass Is followed by the Valedictory assembly and farewell for the senior students.