Newsletter No 10 10 April 2019

Kia Ora,

This Sunday we celebrate Palm Sunday. At this time we commemorate the triumphal entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem when palm branches were placed in His path, before His arrest on Holy Thursday and His Crucifixion on Good Friday. It marks the beginning of Holy Week in which Christians celebrate the mystery of salvation through Christ’s Death and Resurrection on Easter Sunday. Every year during this sacred week, the Church invites us to consider once again, the meaning of the Cross. With each passing year, we bring our own considerations, understandings, and acceptance of our faith, as they have developed since the previous year.

On Tuesday we had our Palm Sunday Liturgy and procession. It was a wonderful liturgy, and I am sure the donkey in our procession was a highlight for many children.

Last week our children participated in the Stations of the Cross Liturgy where they reflected on the final hours in the life of Jesus on Earth. Tomorrow we have the Washing of the Feet Liturgy at 10 am in the School Hall. Jesus washed the feet of his disciples prior to the Last Supper and this has significance in that it was a display of humility and His servanthood. I have been very impressed with the way our children have led and been involved in our liturgies. Thank you children and thanks to our teachers who have been organising these special liturgies.

There are several Liturgies and Masses in our parish over Easter and I invite you and your family to attend these. Times are included later in this newsletter.

This week we farewell Katherine Smith who goes on maternity leave and I wish her well during this lovely time for her and her husband Ritchie. Next term we welcome back Annie Russell who will be teaching in Room 12 for the rest of the year.

Reading Logs for the Holiday Reading Programme have been issued to the children today. Once filled in, these need to be returned in the first week back next term. Adults reading to children counts and so too does children on Lexia. We have a lot of book vouchers in the lucky draw and if children are lucky enough to win these, then they will be able to swap the vouchers for books during Scholastic Book week in the second week of this term..

Last week we had our three-way conferences for our junior classes. Thank you for supporting these. I am sure our children are all set up with their goals for Term 2. In Week 3 of Term 2 parents of children in Kahikatea and Totara will be able to meet teachers for a goal session with their child.

During the week our Flippa ball teams battled it out in finals. A huge congratulations to our Lions and Jaguars who won their grades; Lions Senior 1st Division and the Jaguars Junior 1st Division. Well done children and thanks to the coaches and supporters.

Our swimming team also competed today in the inter-school meet. I haven’t received any results as of yet. I am sure they had a great day.

During the holidays we celebrate ANZAC Day. I am hoping to have a strong representation from our school attending the parade. If your child would like to join us and walk in the parade and participate in the Civic Ceremony please make sure they are at the Lakefront Memorial (intersection of Fenton St and Whakaue Streets) by 8.40am in their winter school uniform. Jersey, not fleece top. The ceremony should be over by 11.00am Parents are also invited to be part of the parade and service. If you have a poppy your child can wear, please pin it on them. I will have some spare ones to give to children at the parade. This is a very special ceremony so I do encourage our children to be part of this. ALL STUDENTS ARE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE.

At the start of Term 2 children must be in winter uniform. Uniforms can be bought from our uniform shop. The shop is open today (Wednesday) at 2.30pm, Friday at 8.30am and on Monday, the first day back in Term 2, at 8.30pm. I want to make sure our students are wearing the correct uniform in Term 2, so I will contact you if your child is not in the correct winter uniform. At this point, I would also like to mention that our Lost Property was *overflowing* with items left around the schoolyard by students. Please have a look to see if any items are yours.

Andrew Chinn is coming to visit and sing with our children. Since 2000, Andrew Chinn has been recording Christian music for children (and some for adults too) for use in Religious Education and liturgy. At St Mary’s we are very familiar with Andrew’s music. Some songs you may know are; These Hands, This Day, Together as One and Rainbow to name just a few. You are all more than welcome to join us for the Whole School Concert on Tuesday 9th May at 6.15 pm in our school hall. It will be an excellent concert.

As the term draws to an end I want to thank all our staff for their hard work over the term. I would also like to thank our community for all your support over this time. We are fortunate to have so many of you willing to help in so many different ways.

May I wish you all a very blessed and happy Easter. I hope you have a peaceful and restful time. School re-commences on MONDAY 29 APRIL.

Have a great week.

Kind regards,
David Macmillan, Principal.


Holy Thursday April 18th, 7.00pm
Good Friday, April 19th : Way of the Cross 10.00am, Ceremonies 3.00pm
Holy Saturday, April 20th Easter Vigil 7.00pm
Easter Sunday, April 21st 10.00am and 5.00pm

Good Friday, April 19th 3.00pm
Easter Sunday April 21st 8.00am



On Tuesday we held our palm procession. Students walked the block singing Hosanna and the donkey joined us too! Palm Sunday is the start of Holy Week-the most significant time in the liturgical calendar.
Palm Sunday-Jesus procession into Jerusalem on a donkey
Holy Thursday-Jesus washes the Disciples feet and the first Mass is said
Good Friday-Jesus carries his cross, is beaten, and crucified on the cross
Easter Sunday-Jesus rises from the dead as he said he would.

Palm Sunday is the final Sunday of Lent, the beginning of Holy Week, and commemorates the triumphant arrival of Christ in Jerusalem, days before he was crucified. During Palm Sunday Mass, palms are distributed to parishioners who carry them in a ritual procession into church.The Last Supper was the final meal Jesus shared with his Disciples in Jerusalem. During the meal, Jesus predicts his betrayal. Good Friday is the day on which Catholics commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Catholics are joined by almost all other Christians in solemn commemoration on this day. It is also a legal holiday around much of the world. As we know from the Gospels, Jesus Christ rose from the dead on the third day following his crucifixion, which would be Sunday. His resurrection marks the triumph of good over evil, sin and death. It is the singular event which proves that those who trust in God and accept Christ will be raised from the dead.
Family Challenge: Go to a Mass this Easter, as a whole family. Reflect on the blessings we have and that we are saved because Jesus died for us. Sending our children to a Catholic school means we have to be ready to lead by example. Attending Mass, even in our busy lives, is one way to help our children grow spiritually and encounter Christ.


This year we will offer our Y3-6 students the opportunity to sit ICAS Assessments through the University of New South Wales. These are International Assessments, which are generally undertaken by the more able students in a school. However, as they are offered on a user pays basis, anyone may register for them.

ICAS Tests we will offer this year:

Year 3 - 6 students: Science, Mathematics, Spelling, English

Year 4 – 6 students: Writing

Participation in these tests is optional. We suggest that they are only suitable/useful for very able students.

If you want your child to participate further details will be available next term. The tests are much later this year, hence we haven't called for registrations yet.

Test dates are:
ICAS Science Thurs 5 Sept
ICAS Writing Tuesday 10 Sept
ICAS Spelling Thursday 12 Sept
ICAS English Tuesday 17 Sept
ICAS Maths Thursday 19 Sept

More details to follow next term.


PITA PIT : Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays
orders online via

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FRIDAYS: Sausage Sizzle and Juicies available. $1.50 each item. Order from your classroom teacher.


Online Uniform Sales: Uniforms are available online via our website using paypal.

Change of Address/Contact Phone numbers:
For change of personal contact details : Please notify the office or email :
The school newsletter is available on Wednesday afternoons via email.

To advise School absences

Leave a message on the answerphone
Notify us via the school website (see quick links-absences)
Notify us via the School App - see absentee form

GYMNASTICS has started again for the year. Tuesday, lunchtimes in the school hall.
Your child is welcome to come along and join in.

Sports News


For all information regarding Sports events you can look under the sports tab on our school website

Sports DRAWS click here

Sports EVENTS click here

Sports RESULTS click here



Please send any team photos you have to Catherine -


Team lists are available to view on our school website under the sports tab

Coaches your team lists with contact info will come out over the holidays.


Please return summer sports uniforms to the office asap. Touch singlets are used for Miniball and Cricket shirts are used for Hockey so it is important these shirts are returned please.

Children can collect their winter sports uniforms at the start of Term 2.


We have loads of football boots that are FREE to a good home. There are lots of different colours and sizes, many of which have only been used for one season. If you would like a pair then please just pop into the uniform shop during their normal opening hours to pick up/try a pair on.


Entries have now closed and SPORT BOP are taking NO late entries.
We were given a bunch of 'passports' for children to tick off their mileage in the build up to the final Mini Marathon event. If your child did not receive one then these are available on our school website, under 'Sports Events' to print off yourself.

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Results are available to view on our school website under the 'Sports Results' tab.

If you are wanting to improve your swim skills or build up your fitness, then you should join Swim Rotorua. We are a very friendly club with over 100 young members training in our Platinum and Diamond Squads at the Rotorua Aquatic Centre. If you are wanting to do well at School Swimming Sports, then please join us and have a go.
If you can swim laps of Freestyle & Backstroke, then please contact Tara Watt on 022 332 6922 or at
Swim Rotorua – building confidence in every swimmer

Holiday Programmes

To view School Holiday Programmes please see our school website - under sports Tab or click here


If you have anything worth a special mention, sport or otherwise, please email Catherine with a photo if you have one

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