‘…some attributes of leadership are universal and are often about finding ways of encouraging people to combine their efforts, their talents, their insights, their enthusiasm and their inspiration to work together...’ – Queen Elizabeth II
Most of us, myself included, have never witnessed the reign of any other monarch but Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Coronated in 1953, the Queen was a symbol of loyalty, leadership and devotion to Britain. Perhaps the most famous woman in the world, her ubiquitous presence is observed within our currency, her annual Christmas broadcasts and her symbolic importance within Australia.
Throughout her life, she carried the hopes of the British people, fulfilling her initial promise that her ‘whole life, whether it be long or short, be devoted to…service.’ We, as a Mercy community, pay our respect to the life of Queen Elizabeth II. Living for 96 years, she assumed the throne at just 25. Her legacy of power and humility has impacted the entire world, and her passion for serving the Commonwealth resonates with the OLMC community as we strive to embody her leadership and her ability to defy the impossibilities.
Mercy communities across the world celebrated Mercy Day on 16 September. Reflecting upon Catherine McAuley’s opening of the House of Mercy in Ireland, we held a beautiful Mass where College Chaplin, Father Walter, introduced the theme of Mercy Day, ‘Women of Courage’. Celebrating everything that empowers women, special guest Leila Abdallah, who lost her three children in a horrific car accident in 2020, spoke about the importance of choosing to forgive over harbouring feelings of revenge and hate. Revealing the role of faith in her personal forgiveness journey, Leila revealed that ‘faith will make you courageous’, a message that I encourage all Mercy Girls to apply within their lives. Following an enthusiastic rendition of the Alma Mater, special guests and staff attended a morning tea in the Convent Garden, and students engaged in fun activities for the remainder of the day.
The finalities of Term 3 are bittersweet for the Graduating Class of 2022. I am looking forward to the Graduation activities during this week, including Mass at St Patrick’s Cathedral, the Graduation Assembly and Graduation lunch at Oatlands House. I am so proud of the young women that these girls have become throughout their time at OLMC, and I wish them the very best in all their future endeavours. May they strive towards limitless possibilities, while keeping the Mercy Values close to their hearts.
Saluting Sydney Women
Several Year 10 students were given the exciting opportunity to attend the Saluting Sydney Women event at the Sydney Opera House on 9 September, where they assisted at the event. They were privileged to hear from Ann Sherry, a leading Australian business executive. Ann is well-accomplished in both government and banking, driving change as she instigated the first corporate paid maternity leave scheme at Westpac in the 1990s. The girls listened to a number of speakers, including Ukrainian refugee, Marta Artmenmko, who is leading initiatives for the Ukrainian Council of NSW to support Ukrainians who have fled to Australia.