Special Character 17 August 2018

Welcome Father Rico

We would like to welcome Father Rico to our school community. He was officially welcomed at our New Families liturgy. We look forward to getting to know Father Rico. 


Well done to the Young Vinnies who carry out Service. They have been visiting local Rest Homes, playing games, doing yoga, performing magic tricks and performing musical and dance items. 

Monday 6th August -  Hodgson House Rest Home. Monday 13th August - Cedar Manor Retirement and Care.

They plan to visit - Fraser Manor Retirement Home and another Home this term. 

Sacrament of Baptism

If anyone would like to find out more about having their children Baptised please contact Margie at the Church office 578 6209. Or you can email Teresa Rush This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further information.

Senior Jesus Strand key teaching and learning

Catholics believe that Jesus Christ is both fully human he tino tangata and divine he tino Atua like God. People come to know Jesus through reading and reflecting on the stories about him in the New Testament. Through the stories people can get a sense of the people, the times and places Jesus lived in that influenced his life and his work. 

Each gospel writer records Jesus’ life from a different perspective and this enables people to develop a deeper understanding of Jesus’ life, his mission and his death and resurrection. Jesus came to make known to people that God is his Abba, Matua. Jesus’ life was God’s gift of love to the world because God loved people so much. Jesus taught that the Holy Spirit strengthens people to turn away from sin and live as he lived. Jesus lived with faith, hope and love and he invites his followers to do the same. Christians express their faith, hope and love through worshipping God and loving actions.

Teresa Rush


PTA Defibrillator

CONGRATULATIONS to all our students who got in behind the school cross country fundraiser; 

you raised just over $2,000 for the PTA’s defibrillator. 

It is times like this that I am reminded what a fantastic school community we have.  Thank you very much to all of you.      

Steven Finlayson

Special Character 2 August 2018

Please pray for Ben Fuller and his whanau

Ben’s mother, Freda passed away unexpectedly last weekend.  Please pray for Ben, Gen and family during this very sad and difficult time. 

Hehu Karaiti-Jesus -  Term 3 Religious Education

This term our teaching focus is on Jesus- Hehu Karaiti and our school value Truth- Tika

Students will be reflecting on the main question: 

How can I be an excellent follower of Jesus?

The focus for each area of the school is:

Tika and Maramatanga:  Jesus my friend, Jesus showed his love in different ways.

Whakapono: Jesus gives himself in the Eucharist; Jesus came to show people how to live and lead them to God.

Aroha:  The Life of Jesus; Jesus - the fullness of God’s revelation.


This week I would like to highlight the great service provided by the students who run the “Fun Factory” This club is open on Tuesday and Thursday lunchtime by room 10.

Milli Banbury, Lottie Mann, Willow Murie, Fenella Price, India Scholes, Niamh O’Connor and Cleo Sands from Whakapono.

“The Fun Factory is where kids who don’t have anyone to play with can come to play games, do art, read books. When they are here we talk to them and see how they are going.” -  Milli Banbury.

“We started it because when I was walking around the school one day we noticed people without friends sitting around trees doing nothing.”  - Willow Murie

“We thought that we should do something to help people make friends.”  - Lottie Mann

Farewell Father Danny

Students, Staff and community farewelled Father Danny last week with a Liturgy. We gave God thanks for Father Danny and all he has done for us. We wish him well in his new appointment as Parish Priest in Melville and Hospital Chaplin. 

Father Danny has done many things for our school. You have taught many students the wonders of God and I have learnt an amount from you too. If you hadn’t have come to St Mary’s, I don’t think I would know much about R.E as I do now. You’ve made a huge contribution to our school in the time you’ve been here. We will all miss you and we wish you the very best in continuing your journey as a priest. 

(Samuel - Aroha)

Dear Fr Danny I’m so sad that today I am writing to say goodbye to you. so, I have decided more to focus on the positive memories you have made at St Marys. 

You are a truly amazing person and you inspire me to love God with all my heart and to continue to do so all my life.

Your beautiful kind spirit has touched the hearts of not just the children but the school staff and the teachers too. 

(Sophia - Aroha)

Thank you Father Danny for your committement and service to St Mary’s School.  We will miss you! 

School Feast Day

Thank you for all your support on the School feast day. All the students had a great day. It was fantastic to see the students interacting with learning in their house groups and the way the seniors helped the junior students. The learning based on Blessed Anne Marie Javouhey was excellent and many students really amazed us with their knowledge and thoughts about how we serve God today.

Teresa Rush


Sports News 2 August 2018

Sports Exchange

After last year’s successful term 3 sports exchange with St Thomas More, we have decided to expand this year’s event.  We are really happy to announce that St Mary’s Rotorua will be joining St Mary’s Tauranga and St Thomas More on the last week of term 3 to compete in Netball, Basketball and Football.  This sports exchange will be open to all our Year 5 and 6 students.   As soon as all the information is finalised we will send more information.

National Taekwondo Champhionships 

Jazmine Oficial competed in the 9 – 12 year old age group at the National Taekwondo Champhionships finishing an amazing 1st in Sparing, 1st Pair Poomsae (forms or defined pattern of attack and defensive movements), 1st Individual Poomsae.  With two more years in this category, I am sure she will continue to have great success. 

Miniball World Cup

In the last week of term 2 a St Mary’s team of Areta Kahura, Louie Gash, Kees Schiphorst, Makae Fuller, Alexander Bayliss, Loimata Paaka, Joshua Fausett, Cormac Gardiner, Kahlia Gardiner-Hano and George Hopkins competed as Russia in the Miniball World Cup.  Out of the 32 teams who competed at the tournament, our St Mary’s team WON THE COMPETITION!!!!! 

To top off what was a fantastic day, they also finished 2nd in the best dressed competition.  On behalf of everybody involved I would like to say a huge thank you to Wayne Fausett, who coached the team for a very full on and long day.

I would also like to congratulate Areta Kahura, who was named in the tournament team from the Miniball World Cup.  This team does not play any games, but is made up of the best players  from every team who competed.

Soccer Success

During the July school holidays, Benjamin Petrik competed in the Christchurch International Cup.  There are over 1,000 players at this football tournament,  for teams from the Asia-Pacific region.  Congratulations to Ben and his team who finished 4th against some very high quality teams.  Ben has also been chosen, as part of the Tauranga All Stars Football Academy to travel to Scotland and England in December this year to play against four academies there (Rangers FC, Kilmarnock FC, Manchester City FC and Burnley FC). 

St Mary’s Speech and Drama Term 2 News!

Hello St Mary’s Catholic School families! We are now into the second half of the year – dramatically scary to say the least! However, us drama and communications enthusiasts have not let the year get away on us, thus we have thrown ourselves into comps, exam prep and performance pieces across the speech and drama and communication skills syllabuses. 

We’ve been busy!

As we nearer mid-July, we have several speech and drama students – Sophia Mason, Gia Dumbleton, Ivy Barrett-Hodgson, Imogen and Saoirse Williamson, Chloe Evans, Eve Jeffries, Amelia Muller, Abby Moore and Lila Drummond – all gearing up for the Tauranga Performing Arts Competitions, Speech and Drama Section, to be held in at Baycourt from 12th – 14th July - best of luck all!

Heading into August from 21st – 23rd, we also have several students sitting Trinity College London Speech and Drama, Acting in Pairs, Group Scripted and Communication Skills exams. 

It will be all systems go closer to comps – and much holiday practise for exams no doubt – so we wish them a rewarding journey and experience ahead and look forward to hearing all about!

Term’s 3 and 4 will also see all St Mary’s speech and drama students preparing play scripts for an end-of-year Xmas concert to be performed for fellow students, teachers and parents – stay tuned for the date!

Wishing all families a safe and enjoyable mid-year break ahead! All speech and drama queries should be directed to Dee Ellwood: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 021 581917.

Dee Ellwood and the St Mary’s Catholic School Speech and Drama Students

Sports News 7 July 2018

What a fantastic finish to term two we have had.

Basketball World Cup

At the recent Year 5/6 Basketball World Cup, our St Mary’s team of Caden Lowe, Jayden Hyland, Kiwa Kahura, Finn Curragh, Oliver Grosso, Pateriki Paaka, Emma Rogers and Holly Fausett competed as Puerto Rico.  Not only did they have a fantastic time, the team came runner up in the best dressed competition and finish 5th out of the 32 teams who competed.  On behalf of everybody involved I would like to say a huge thank you to Lisa Hyland, who coached the team for a very full on and long day.

South Cluster Cross Country Championships

St Mary’s competed as part of the South Cluster Cross Country Championship team, where the top 15 finishers in each age group qualified for Western Bay of Plenty Cross Country Championships.  It was an outstanding day, run in perfect cross country conditions and St Mary’s results were a great reflection of the day.  Our results were Year 6 Girls: Holly Fausett 1st, Emma Rogers 3rd.  Year 6 Boys we had a clean sweep of: Reef Joseph 1st, Jacob Kleinsmith 2nd, Aidan Dobbs 3rd and Caden Lowe 5th. Year 5 Girls: Summer-Ann Joseph 1st, Eva Jeffries 3rd, Imogen Williamson 5th, Sophia Mason 6th.  Year 4 Girls: Areta Kahura 1st, India-Rose Scholes 4th, Cleo Sands 6th and Naimh O’Connor 7th. Year 4 Boys: Sidney Orchard finished 6th.

Western Bay of Plenty Cross Country Championships 

From there our students competed in the Western Bay of Plenty Cross Country Championships to qualify for the BoP Cross Country Championships, where 420 students from 92 different schools competed.  The BoP Cross Country Championships is the pinnacle cross country event for our school and all of our students ran with courage, conviction and determination.  Congratulations to the following students who ran very well to achieve their great results.  

Eva Jeffries 23rd 9 Year Old Girls.  Holly Fausett 1st and Emma Rogers 5th 10 Year Old Girls.  Reef Joseph 5th and Jacob Kleinsmith 9th 10 Year Old Boys. A special mention for our new Bay of Plenty Champion.  Congratulations Holly Faucett.  The best in the Bay!

Argos Gymsport Competition 

A team of 13 Gymnasts represented St Mary’s School and competed in the annual inter-school Gymsports festival.  After many many hours of training and learning routines for beam, floor, vault and trampoline we came away with many medals, certificates and super happy girls. The routines were flawless on the day and their attitudes were outstanding.  Well done girls all your hard work paid off. Our team was lead by the amazing Megan Wills had some incredible results.  

These results are not only a reflection of the passion of Megan, but also of our enthusiastic gymnastics students.

Addison Sands-6th overall and 1st team overall

Cleo Sands-5th overall and 1st team overall

Liae Yang -1st floor, 1st vault, 2nd beam, 2nd overall, 1st team overall

Grace Gundry placed 13th floor, 5th vault, 23rd beam

Summer Joseph 23rd floor, 8th vault, 9th beam

Alana Perrett 16th floor, 7th vault, beam 4th

Eva Jefferies 1st floor, 1st vault, 4th beam, 1st overall and 1st team overall

Briar Grace 1st vault, 4th beam, 2nd floor, 1st team overall

Isla Martin 5th floor, 2nd vault, 30th Beam, 1st team overall

Greer Wakelin 3rd floor, 10th beam, 6th beam, 1st team overall

Milla Mason 16th floor, 10th vault, 9th beam, 1st team overall

Isla Wills 1st trampoline, 6th floor, vault 2nd, beam 6th, 6th overall

Olivia Williamson 1st floor, 1st vault, 3rd beam, 1st overall

For the first time in quite a while we had two Rythmic Gymnasts compete at the same competition.  Congratulations to Sophie Van Den Borst who finished 4th in the Club Level year 3/4 competition and Imogen Williamson who finished 2nd in the Club Level year 5/6 competition.

North Island Synchronised Swimming Championships

Yeva Parshikova competed in the North Island Synchronised Swimming Championships that were held in Wellington on 18-20 May. The competition attracted over 80 athletes from the North Island.  Yeva achieved the following fantastic results:

12 & under Figures       3rd      (in a large field, and in her first year competing in this category)  

12 & under Team          2nd       

Board News 7 July 2018

Term 2 seems to have flown by and here we are at the end of it already.  I’m sure you’re all ready for a chance to wind down for the next 2 weeks and recoup somewhere out of this chilly weather.

As our DRS mentioned in the last Newsletter, a number of teachers and Board members were fortunate to attend the NZ Catholic Education Convention in Wellington in early June.  This is an event that comes around every 3 years and is an excellent forum for those involved in Catholic Schools to reconnect with their core purpose, get updated on new teaching methods and principles based on our Catholic premise, upcoming RE curriculum changes, and review processes, and listen to teachings from some very wise and faithful educators.

The theme of the Convention was ‘Christ’s Call: To Love, To Be, To Do’, and a common thread throughout the key speakers related to ‘Accompaniment’. That we are not alone on our journey, but must be open to receiving that help and enlightenment with those that accompany us.  A very uplifting message.

One key speaker, David Wells, I found particularly inspirational.  Check out some of his talks on YouTube if you have time: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J8VYCdYPOgM

On that note, have a fabulous holiday break all, and take care

God Bless

Claire Stott, BOT Chair 

The Sir Peter Blake Young Leaders Award: Ariana Workman 

In Week 8, we had representatives from our local Westpac Branch come to our school assembly, to present The Sir Peter Blake Young Leaders Award. This award is presented to one worthy leader from schools across New Zealand. 

These awards celebrate young people whose outstanding leadership uplifts their school community.  

By acknowledging leadership at this young age, The Sir Peter Blake Trust hopes it encourages these talented young people to keep going and to aim higher.

Ariana Workman a worthy Y6 Leader, was this years recipient. She received a $100 that was placed in a Westpac account, a medal, a framed award and a prize pack including a pair of red socks.

We congratulate Ariana on receiving this award.

Special Character 7 July 2018

Sacramental Programme

Congratulations to our students who made their First Communion. We thank Father Mark and the teachers who assisted them on their journey. 

Farewell to Father Danny

Thursday 26th July 10.10am the school will hold a special Liturgy to give thanks to and farewell Father Danny. Followed by Morning Tea. We thank him for all the knowledge and assistance he has given our school. We wish Father Danny all the best in his new role as Parish Priest. We will miss him. 

Grandparents/ Grandfriends Day Liturgy and Open Morning

Please have students phone up their Grandparents and Grandfriends. 

Liturgy 10am Tuesday 31st July.

Classrooms will be open to visitors from 9am, so arrive early and see today’s classrooms and explore your child’s learning environment.