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Sunrise retreat delivers more than visual beauty!

Cyprus Causer

The Year 13 students watched a beautiful sunrise while celebrating mass on Eastern beach to kickstart their last year and their retreat! The mass, presided by Fr Larry, began at 7am with the theme of ‘carrying your cross’.

From there, the students walked over to Willow Park, to enjoy breakfast and continue the rest of their retreat. There were four activities the students rotated around throughout the day, being split into their house groups.

The team-building session, run by Ms Samaeli, used trust and perseverance to achieve our goal. The games were a trust fall, a group trust fall and a human pyramid. They required us to trust every member of our group and illustrated if one member slackened, the rest of the members had to take their weight.

Importance of God in my life was the next activity. It involved a reflection on two passages from the bible: the story of Adam and Eve and the story of Joseph and his brothers. Facilitated by Ms Madison, this session allowed the students to deeply reflect on the Word and how God worked in their lives.

The following session, consequences of my actions was led by Mr Ardern, discussed the importance of goal setting and habits. He focused on improving your strengths as well as discovering what your strengths are. To conclude this topic, he gave them conversation starters to discuss with various people in the room.

Rising from fall, the most demanding session, was a follow-on from Fr Larry’s homily about carrying your cross. Students each had to piggyback a peer and climb up the stairs to the lookout, where a beautiful scenic view was waiting for us. From there, we walked through Maclean’s Park, ending up on the beach, resting there for a couple of minutes while they reflected on two questions; where am I at and where am I going.

After lunch, we had a guest speaker, an ex-teacher, Mr Yalda, speak to us about his challenges in life after he became a refugee. His story of courage and perseverance throughout his life, inspired the students.

This retreat was very memorable for the students! Thank you to the Mr Tamayo for organsing this day and Willow Park for hosting.