One of the many opportunities that we provide for our young men to consciously experience putting our faith tradition into action is our annual Winter SleepOut. I invite you to read the reflection of Andrew De Bolfo, one of our young men in Year 7, who took up the opportunity to stand in solidarity with those who find themselves without a home:
On the 23rd night of August, the young men involved with Remar, Encounter MC and a few boys in Faulkner House experienced what so many people across the world go through every night, the feeling of being homeless and having nowhere to sleep but in the streets. As a group we slept in the Quadrangle for a night. When we arrived, we were told to go up into the staff room where we shared a simple meal of soup and a bread roll and were greeted by Mr. Mcllroy, who gave us a run-down of what would be happening that night. After dinner we were addressed by a guest speaker named Ezekiel. He spoke to us about how we can all do something about this global social justice issue. We did many things such as role play and participated in meaningful discussions about Ezekiel’s experience as a chaplain at three maximum security prisons. He explained how the inmates thought and how they did not have one of the crucial things in order to have a good life, Love.
We learnt that we can all help with this issue if we do small things, like talk to someone who is not having a good day or not feeling very well mentally or physically. Then we had a liturgy with prayers of intercession and gospel readings by teachers and students. We then went on a night walk around the school grounds. It was fun as I was able to make new friendships with older students. When the walk had led us back up to the Quadrangle, I began to set up our shelter with my newly made friends. Other students could then play board games in the library if their make-shift bedding had been set up already. We finished our shelters at around 11:30pm and laid down for the night. During the night the conditions were not bad, but we could understand what the homeless go through and how unforgiving this world can be. We woke up at around seven and began to pack up our cardboard shelters and went home. It was an amazing experience and I cannot wait to participate in the years to come. You can still donate to the cause through the Vinnies website:
So far Marcellin has raised $1266. A great effort.