We strive to guide students toward living responsible and just lives by teaching and modelling the Gospel values of love of others through compassion, forgiveness, tolerance, advocating for justice and service to the poor and marginalised.
At St Francis Xavier, we encourage students to develop their whole selves, treat others fairly and respectfully, be responsible for their actions, and follow moral and ethical principles. We strive to activate this through opportunities to celebrate and learn about the Catholic faith through Religious Education lessons, daily prayer, retreats, reflection days, liturgies and Mass.
At St Francis Xavier, we integrate programs that build upon and complement the Catholic Schools Office Student Discipleship Continuum from Year 4 - Year 12. The sequential and age-appropriate continuum provides students with intentional faith-filled opportunities where they feel free to discuss and develop their faith.
Some of the programs St Francis Xavier Students can experience in collaboration with the Catholic Schools Office include:
Accedere Year 4 Retreat
With the opportunity to complete the Catholic Sacraments of Initiation in Year 3, the purpose of this Retreat is to invite Year 4 students to a day that focuses on the theme of ‘friendship in Jesus’. Developed by the CSO (Catholic Schools Office Lismore ), this program is provided to our school to share with our Year 4 students. Here at St Francis, we take the opportunity to engage the support of the Youth Ministry Officers (YMOs) from St John Paul College to assist school staff in delivering the program.
Exuro Year 5 Retreat
Exuro is another Student Discipleship Retreat Day for Year 5 students held in each of the five regions of the Lismore Diocese. Year 9 CSYMA (Catholic Studies Youth Ministry Australia) student leaders from St John Paul College support small group discussions and activities with the Year 5 students who have the opportunity to discuss and discover possibilities of faith formation and leadership. Former parish school staff help convene these retreats, making connections between the parish and our own school.
Incitare Year 6 Retreat
This one-day retreat designed for our Year 6 students uses various group activities and student-led discussions to open up experiences for skill development. It is designed to help students share connections with older students who often share open, grounded and vulnerable insights into their own experiences and thinking around their faith. It is the leadership of the CSYMA students at this retreat that helps introduce the invitation to become involved in a school Youth Ministry class during secondary school enrollment.
More experiences within the Student Discipleship Continuum are:
Schools of Prayer
At St Francis Xavier, engagement in prayer is given many opportunities. Talking to God in formal and informal ways can be experienced at age-appropriate levels throughout all year groups. Prayer tables, sacred spaces within the grounds, and daily prayers of Grace and Thanks are all embedded within the day-to-day aspects of our school, helping students develop an understanding of the role of prayer in their faith life. Formal and more traditional prayers promoted here at St Francis Xavier, as is with Catholic Education, are the Rosary, Awareness Examen, Lectio Divina, and the contemplative prayer of Christian Meditation.
Music Ministry - Wildfire, the Diocesan Worship team, offers whole school evangelisation to primary and secondary schools under the banner of Proclaim Lismore and the Ten: Ten Experience.
Digital Ministry - Quality communications are available in the Proclaim Lismore Student digital platforms featuring Facebook and Instagram, with a focus on evangelisation of youth, praise and worship, and youth ministry digital networking (YouTube; Vimeo).
Sacramental Preparation - Our Sacramental Program is school-based and takes place during Religious Education lessons. Parent engagement is key to the success of the program, and as such, there is a family information night at the start of each Sacramental Program. Candidates receiving the Sacraments are given the opportunity to participate in a retreat experience during school time to embed their understanding, deepen faith and build upon their Sacramental Experience.
In the Lismore Diocese, the Sacramental Program is available to Baptised students in the following years:
Sacrament of Confirmation - from Year 3.
Sacraments of Reconciliation & First Communion - from Year 4 (students must have received Confirmation in the previous calendar year before preparing to receive Reconciliation and Communion) Students in older grades are more than welcome to prepare for the Sacraments, and special provisions can be made to accommodate this.
Becoming a Catholic
Families who would like to find out more about our Catholic Faith or become a Catholic are encouraged to contact St Augustine’s Parish Office at the Curran Centre on 6651 0000.