Religion

Our Vision

St Mary’s Catholic Primary, Maryborough is a co-educational Catholic Primary School, currently catering for 269 students from Prep to Year Six, and planning for future growth. We are a community of students, staff, parents and parishioners working together with a shared vision and commitment to faith and excellence in education.

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At St Mary’s we strive to provide high quality inclusive Catholic education. Our staff forms a professional, collaborative and dedicated team committed to best practice delivered through innovative and creative pedagogy.  We offer a broad-based curriculum providing a range of opportunities and experiences that nurture students to be life-long learners.
 
Catholic schooling has been part of the Maryborough community for 158 years. The charisms of both the Sisters of St Joseph and Sisters of Mercy combined with Parish heritage  have guided our school community to the present time.

At St Mary’s Catholic Primary, our religious vision is to:
 
“Develop the religious literacy of students in light of the Catholic tradition, so that they might participate critically and authentically in contemporary culture”
 
Our Mission

St Mary’s Religious Education Program articulates a Catholic view of learning and teaching and is structured around the Model for Religious Education.
 
At St Mary’s we “ensure Religious Education is a priority in the school through communicating our Catholic story and teaching about the Catholic faith where gospel values are fostered in all that we do ….
St Mary’s Primary Mission Statement
 
At St Mary’s, a Catholic view about learning and teaching is reflected in both dimensions of Religious Education: The classroom teaching and learning of Religion and the religious life of the school.
 
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We believe in life-long learning in religion and faith development. We believe in holistic learning; the gaining of wisdom (not just information); the connection between rationality and beliefs and the essential integration of knowing and living in the Catholic/Christian tradition. We believe in a curriculum that develops understanding of stewardship and sacramentality, allowing students to be co-creators and experience God in their everyday world.
 
Our mission inspired by the heritage of the Josephite and Mercy Sisters together with our Parish is to provide quality learning and teaching programs that cater for the needs of each and all.

Our Program
Religion Curriculum
Our mission is to develop students as lifelong learners through a balanced curriculum enriched by Gospel values whilst empowering them to 3.jpgmake a positive contribution to the community. The four strands of the Religion Curriculum (Sacred Texts, Beliefs, Church and Christian Life) are interrelated and their content is taught in an integrated way to develop our learners’ religious literacy so that all may participate critically and effectively as lifelong learners within our faith communities and in society.
The below overviews provide the focus of Religion Curriculum units for each year level for the year.  Parents will be informed about the content being covered each term through parent newsletters which are sent home at the beginning of each term and through updates in the school newsletters.

Religious Life of the School
The four components of the Religious Life of the School (Religious Identity and Culture; Evangelisation and Faith Formation; Prayer and Worship; and Social Action and Justice) are distinctive aspects of the way each member of our community lives their faith.  Our aim is to provide opportunities for each person to develop a close personal relationship with God.

Religio us Identity and Culture
St Mary’s Primary derives its identity and culture from its Catholic Christian character and accepts the challenge to be a real and living expression of the Church’s pastoral mission in the world. Our school has a rich tradition based on the charisms of Mary MacKillop, Catherine McAuley, and St Mary’s Parish.
The Spirit of St Mary’s Primary School is underpinned by the values of compassion, dignity, justice, community and wisdom.  We seek to live this Spirit in the way we welcome, serve and inspire.

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Evangelisation and Faith Formation
At St Mary’s Primary we believe in a strong commitment to Evangelisation and Faith Formation within the school. Experiences which promote and support the spiritual and faith formation of students and staff are positively engaged in by members of the school community. This emphasis is seen in the very high profile Religious Education and Religious Life of the School plays in daily school life, promoting a strong sense of prayer and mission in everyday life and guiding our professional development opportunities. There is also a very strong and active relationship with the parish and an ongoing commitment to building and sustaining the capacity and commitment of staff to give Christian witness and contribute to the mission of the Church.

Prayer and Worship
At St Mary’s Primary prayer and worship are important to our school community.  Our challenge at St Mary’s is to engage our students and their families with the tradition, language and culture of the Church. At St Mary’s Primary, prayer and ritual are celebrated at all school community gatherings.
We seek to provide many opportunities for families to engage with the Catholic Christian tradition and its rich spiritual practices. As a school, we welcome all parent, family and parish participation in the religious life of the school through open invitation for school and parish community to attend school liturgies, Masses, week-end masses, church ministries and parish celebrations. All school liturgies and masses are further enhanced with a combined community morning tea on the school convent verandah.
Years Prep to year 4 have class liturgies once a term in the school chapel and years 5 and year 6 celebrate Mass in the school chapel and every third Thursday with parishioners at St Mary’s Parish Church. We combine twice a year with St Mary’s College and St Mary’s Parish to celebrate the Feast Days of Mary Help of Christians and the Assumption of Mary.
Students in year 4 are encouraged to participate in the parish Confirmation and First Holy Communion sacramental programs throughout the year.

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Social Action and Justice
Our school fully supports Social Action and Justice in the school and the wider community. Our year 6 leaders, as part of their religion curriculum lead the way with the organization of social action activities each term. Some activities include, Crazy Sock Day; Free Dress Day; Hot Dog Day; Ice block Day; Support Your Favourite Team Day; Resources are provided to classes to assist with the learning and teaching of social action and justice. Resourcing usually comes from our chosen charities and with whom we work to support those less fortunate than ourselves.

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Our four main charities supported are;
Term 1: Caritas Australia
Term 2: Local Charity of choice. 2016 –SEW PNG fundraiser.
Term 3: Catholic Mission Australia
Term 4: St Vincent De Paul Christmas Appeal.
Each term we dedicate week 8 as our school Mission Week where we focus directly on the nominated charity. 
 
Parish Sacramental Program
Parents are the first and most important educators of their children (Declaration on Christian Education, 1968, Vatican II) and it is within the faith development of family and home that children come to a deeper realisation and practice of their faith. The school promotes and supports the participation of families in the Parish Sacramental programs for Baptism , First Reconciliation, Holy Communion and Confirmation. These programs are run by the parish community and the liturgical celebrations for each of these sacraments are celebrated within the Parish. Each year parents are notified through letters and the school newsletter regarding sacramental preparation times and dates. 

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