Aquinas Open Day and school visit

Aquinas Open Day: Wednesday 11 May, sessions available are either 9.00 - 10.00am, or 12:30 - 1:30pm.  Year 6 parents are encouraged to take your children.  

Aquinas staff and students will also visit our Year 6 students at St Mary’s School on Monday 9 May to provide an enrolment presentation, and to offer an enrolment pack to each child to take home.  Parents are also invited to attend this presentation from 1:30 -2:30pm in the Blessed Anne Marie Javouhey Centre.

Special Character 6 April 2016

Our Holy week Liturgies at school started with the joyous proclamation as our Lord as King on Palm Sunday which, Catherine Wood  and Room 5 waving their palms ,spearheaded . This lead into the solemn part of the week starting with the Last Supper (Deanne Willemse and Room 2) and the washing of the feet where Jesus showed his humbleness as a Servant King. This was role played by Ben Fuller who washed the feet of  members of the School Community. The Garden of Gethsemane was a soulful and prayerful time which ended with Jesus betrayal by Judas.( Room 4 and Randy Piceno). The culmination of the week was the Stations of the Cross in which Bryan Crowe and Room 7 led us  beautifully through Jesus’ journey to the cross,with the rest of the school interacting by doing the responses and prayers and a beautiful end to our week at school.

This took us into our Easter break with a Vigil Mass celebrated at St Mary’s Immaculate on Thursday evening at 7pm. 

We are currently celebrating Easter time. It is the most important time of the year when we commemorate and celebrate the Risen Christ.

Easter time lasts for fifty days and ends in the feast of Pentecost where the Holy Spirit empowers Jesus’ followers to go out and spread Jesus’ teachings and to gather as a church for the first time.

Andrew Chinn
We are very excited to have Andrew Chinn visit St Mary’s today.  We look forward to sharing more about his visit in our next newsletter.

Upcoming  Liturgical Celebrations in Term 2

13 May - Pentecost School Mass

14 May - Sursum Corda singing at 5pm Vigil Mass

16 May Catholic School’s Day

17 May - New families Liturgy

Wed- Fri: 18-20 May - DRS/Principals Conference- Rotorua

Sacramental Programme
There are only four more lessons left of the Sacramental Programme.  Please keep all those students who are preparing for the their First Communion and Confirmation in your prayers.  First Communion Mass is on 29 May at 10.30am at St Mary Immaculate Church.

Praying of the Rosary
Every Friday morning at 9.00am you are welcome to come and pray the Rosary led by Christina Guzzo in the Chapel.

Gavin Hesqua
Acting DRS

St Mary’s & South Cluster Swimming Sports

Well after a rather damp start to the day, St Mary’s School Swimming Sports turned out to be a very competitive day with some very close racing and hard fought House and Championship Points.

From the school swimming sports we sent a fantastic team of 23 swimmers to the South Cluster Swimming Sports. Congratulations to Renee Carey, Stella Roper, Niamh Manning, Jaime Lock, Mikayla McGrory, Charlie Hammerich, Henry Scholes, Asa Banbury, Max Broadmore, Georgia Verhoeven, Maia Kahura, Kate Dekker, Briar Davie, Nina Rejthar, Ava Sands, Zoe Wilkinson, Cara Butler, Zach Quin, Hugo McCarroll, Jack McClutchie, Steve Fonohema, Finn Mossop and Mitchell Hubbard. The competition here was at a very high level and all our St Mary’s swimmers competed well. Our year 5 boys were particularly strong, placing 1st, 2nd or 3rd in 22 events out of a possible 27 events. St Mary’s also claimed 1st place in the girls relay, the boys relay and the grand relay. Other excellent performances in the water gives us a very strong group of swimmers heading in to Western Bay Champs on

13 April. Good Luck to our team, Zach Quin, Georgia Verhoeven, Maia Kahura, Renee Carey, Stella Roper, Niamh Manning, Henry Scholes, Asa Banbury, Charlie Hammerich and Max Broadmore.

Maramatanga - Room 14

We would like to share some writing experiences for the beginning of the year.

When I woke up it was bucketing down with rain. I woke up at 7 o’clock. When I was walking to school I had to wear my rain coat and I brought my umbrella.

By Ben Talbot

My friends are Cleo and Indy. We like playing in the playground at school and we like going to Baywave. We like jumping over the waves.

By Niamh O’Connor

Cool News

A Lesson in Jazz
Last Friday three of our budding trumpet players Sylvester Green, Ned and Theo Shaw attended an educational hour ‘Jazz for young people’ at the Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington.

Wynton Marsalis is the artistic director at New York’s Jazz at Lincoln Centre orchestra. He was in Wellington to perform in the NZ Arts Festival. This master trumpet player is widely considered to be the best current trumpet player in the world in both Jazz and classical music. Winner of nine Grammy Awards. The boys and their families were also lucky enough to attend the Friday night concert.

A chance meeting in the hotel lobby enabled Sylvester and his family to an invitation backstage. He was invited into Wynton Marsalis dressing room and played his jazz piece ‘ Daybreak ‘ and was given inspirational coaching.


Many students, parents and staff have taken part in events or activities over the last couple of weeks that are worthy of note.


To Niamh Manning, Ciaran Manning, Sidney Orchard, Indie Scholes, Henry Scholes for winning their Mount Maunganui Surf Club Nippers Overall Achievement for their age groups and also to Jude Tarr and Ollie Jacobs who came second.

A wee story by Sidney Orchard from Room 16. We had to win most of our races to win the trophy - some of the races were beach flags, we had to do relay tag and we did relay races on our paddle boards. At first we felt very nervous but in the end it was lots of fun and really cool.

To Renee Carey & Henry Scholes for winning their age group in the OceanKids 200m event. Henry and Renee have now been invited to an all expenses paid, end of season training camp in Auckland with top New Zealand swimmers and coaches.

To Mrs Warnock (Room 1 Teacher) who has been training very hard and ran her first Offroad Half Marathon at the TECT All Terrain Park on Saturday 12 March.

To the school community for raising $800 for Fiji.

To our amazing PTA who give tirelessly of their time to make sure our children and community get the oportunity to experience such great events. A special thank you to Mel Gash who led the organisation of the Outdoor Adventure Day.

Here is some feedback from the Adventure Day. What a great day! I just wanted to say that in my very short time as a St Mary’s Mum, I am absolutely staggered by the kindness of the kids at the school. Today I saw children sharing their bake sale plates, sharing out their money and cheering each other along. Three times now on my short walk from the car to the class I have seen the older children racing to the little ones aid when they are hurt or sad and looking out for each other. Such a lovely ethos!

If you have something you would like to share please send your articles to Theresa at office@stmarystga.

Trek to the Top - Sir Edmund Hillary’s Story

We were thrilled to have the Production Company Gobsmacked in at school on Tuesday 15 March to audition those interested in the lead roles for our upcoming show Trek to the Top - Sir Edmund Hillary’s Story.

The feedback from Gobsmacked was that they were very impressed with the commitment the students had made to learning their lines and delivering performances of a high calibre.

Thank you for your wonderful effort and congratulations to those students who were chosen for lead roles.

Further opportunities are available for some speaking roles as classes are assigned various parts of the story. We look forward to exciting times ahead.

Trek to the Top - Roles

Edmund Hillary - Isaac Schuler

Tenzing - Ethan Nirmalaraj 

Colonel Hunt - Conrad Grace 

Evans - Emma Mitchinson 

Bourdillon - Emma Thornton 

Sherpa Ang - Charlie Way 

Sherpa Tiger - Sophie Rogers 

Queen - Jamie Lock

Old Hillary - Jack McClutchie 

Amelia - Sophia Mason 

News Presenter - Sofia Arias

News Presenter - Rupert Carter 

News Presenter - Rose Hennessey  

Glacier Singer - Anna Tustin

Royal Palace Singer - Charlotte Mitchell 

Royal Palace Singer - Mikayla McGrory 

Director Assistant - Charlotte Mitchell




Easter Services


*Mass of the Lord’s Supper 7pm, St Mary Immaculate


Stations of the Cross 9am, St Mary Immaculate

Stations of the Cross 10am, St Joseph’s Te Puna

Ecumenical Walk of Witness 10.15am, starts from St Mary Immaculate

The Lord’s Passion 3pm, St Joseph’s and St Mary Immaculate


Easter Vigil 7.30pm, St Mary Immaculate ONLY


8am Mass, St Mary Immaculate

9am Mass, St Joseph’s Te Puna

10.30am Mass, St Mary Immaculate

* It is traditional to bring an item of food for the poor to the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, to be taken up at the Offertory.

Special Character 17 March 2016

Aroha Retreat and Parish School Mass

Our Aroha Team Retreat on Thursday 3 March was

a very special experience for our senior students. Facilitated by Karen Whyte and her team who were great and inspirational young role models for our students. The morning was very prayerful and reverent as the students received the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Classes

then broke into groups for workshops on Prayer, The Beatitudes and The Meaning of Mercy. Some performed skits on what they felt Mercy meant, while others explained the meaning of Mercy by making posters.

Thank you to our families for supporting our Parish school Mass on Sunday 13 March. The Sursom Corda’s debut as a choir was beautiful. They sang The Song of Mercy beautifully. Thank you Mrs Washer.

School Mass Friday 18 March

You are warmly invited to our School Mass in St Mary Immaculate, Cameron Road, at 9.30am to celebrate the Feast of St Joseph (19 March). This feast day has always been a significant day in our school history as St Joseph is the patron Saint of our Cluny Sisters. We look forward to sharing this celebration with you.

Holy Week Liturgies

Parents and caregivers are very welcome to attend any of the liturgies that we have during Holy Week. All liturgies will start at 9.15am in the Blessed Anne Marie Javouhey Centre.

Monday: Palm Sunday - led by Mrs Wood and Room 5 Tuesday: The Last Supper and washing of Feet liturgy - led by Mrs Willemse and Room 2

Wednesday: Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane and his Betrayal - led by Mr Piceno and Room 4

Thursday: Stations of the Cross - Led by Mr Crowe and Room 7. There will be two sessions before morning tea held at stations around the school.

Payment of Extra Curricular Activities

As you are aware, sport and other activities outside the classroom are “optional extras” and as such, will be treated as pay before you play!  Please note we will be enforcing changes to our processes made last year.

This means, payment must be made at the time of registering your child, by eftpos at the school office, (no cash please) or by our preferred method of payment, which is internet banking. Please do not tick the internet payment option on the form until you have made the deposit into our school bank account. The bank account number is displayed on the registration forms. Your cooperation with this process would be much appreciated.

Payment must be received BEFORE your child will be registered into the sport of their choice.

Should you have any questions in relation to payment of either your school or sports account, please do not hesitate to contact Karen at the school office.