The Loyola community is built upon the belief that Jesus is at the heart of our life and locale.
With the assistance of our school Chaplain we are committed to preparing our students for active participation in the Holy Family parish community through the experience of creative and prayerful liturgies. Prayer also forms an important part of community life at Loyola Senior High School with each day commencing with a prayer.
We celebrate our faith in many ways throughout the school year in the following ways:
Prayer and Liturgy
Our liturgies are a sign that we are one body gathered together to celebrate the life that God is giving us in Jesus Christ. As many students and staff as possible are called on to participate in the preparation process and the liturgical presentation, so that the celebration may truly be an action of the whole community. Liturgical celebrations are rich in art and music, the cultures and dances of the world, and embody both word and action.
Opening School Mass
This is an opportunity to ask God’s blessing on our endeavours for the coming year and pray for our family, friends and our school community.
We gather to mark the beginning of the season of Lent; to reflect on our lives and our relationship with God and each other. The Church urges us to renew our hearts and prepare for the promise of eternal life that is proclaimed at Easter.
During this celebration, we journey with Jesus on his way to the cross and ultimately, the joy of new life. We also induct the Student Representative Council, commissioning them to be servants to their community, in the same spirit as Jesus.
Feast of the Sacred Heart
A very important feast in the Jesuit calendar, it is in this celebration that we reflect on the ‘things of the heart’. We are particularly mindful on this day of people in our community and throughout the world who are suffering some form of poverty or hardship. During our Mass, the donations of money, food, clothing and blankets for the St Vincent de Paul Winter Appeal are offered to the Holy Family parish community at Emerton.
Feast of St Ignatius (Multicultural Day)
This celebration is at the heart of our liturgical and cultural life at Loyola.
ValeteOur Valete celebrations mark the culmination of thirteen years of schooling for our Year 12 students.
Foundation Day Mass
On December 3 each year the Loyola community gathers to celebrate our Foundation Day. This day has special significance to our community in different ways. December 3 is the Feast of the great Jesuit missionary and patron saint of Australia, St Francis Xavier SJ. It was for this reason that the Loyola Foundation Stone was laid in 1992. Finally, this day represents the culmination of the St Vincent de Paul Christmas Appeal, when we present our Christmas hampers to the Holy Family Parish Community.
An important part of life at Loyola is the regular celebration of the Eucharist. One of the Jesuit members of staff celebrates Mass with staff and students on a voluntary basis, either before school or during lunch time, usually about three times a week. Staff members and students are always welcome to participate in what is generally a very reflective and personal experience, a perfect way to either start the day or step back from a busy schedule!
Retreats and Reflection Days
At the core of Ignatian Spirituality is a belief that “everything happens between the head and the heart” and our emphasis on Spiritual Formation through the experience of retreats is born out of this belief. Saint Ignatius used a retreat structure when he created the guide to prayer that is followed by all of his companions. He called this guide The Spiritual Exercises.
Loyola Senior High School offers the following retreat programs as an integral part of the spiritual formation of our students:
All Year Eleven students participate in a twilight retreat early in the first term of their studies at Loyola. This experience encourages reflection on the decision to pursue senior studies and its impacts on the student, and familiarity with the story of Saint Ignatius and with some of his key teachings about the importance of service and ‘awareness’. These retreats are facilitated by a collaboration of staff and Year 12 students.
Year 12 Retreat
All students participate in an overnight retreat early in Term 2 of their HSC year. The aim of this retreat is to provide students with the opportunity to pause to reflect on the direction of their lives, and on the future directions of their educational, relational and spiritual journey.
On occasions throughout their time at Loyola some students are offered the opportunity to reflect on very specific issues in their faith and lives. These retreats are optional and are run by the school Chaplain in conjunction with the Pastoral Care Committee.