Good Samaritan Ministry Outreach
Good Samaritan Ministry Outreach was held at St Scholastica’s Glebe during the most recent school holidays. 40 students, representing nine Good Samaritan Education schools came together for a week of service and simple living. The students, and their accompanying teachers, put in some very long days travelling on public transport to various community organisations all over Sydney. These included NSW Foodbank, community kitchens, op shops, various places for people with disabilities, refuges and aged care facilities. The venues, both old and new, are wonderfully welcoming and most have been long term partners in this unique program. The students and teachers not only enjoyed the week but many have had eye opening experiences! Best expressed in their own words:
Georgia Ibbett St Patrick’s College, Campbelltown: Through Ministry Outreach I have discovered my personal answer to who is my neighbour. My neighbour is disabled. My neighbour is homeless and has been abused. My neighbour is strong yet weak, kind yet sorrowful, with wisdom of the years. My neighbour is you and everyone who has graced my life this week. My eyes and your eyes have been opened never to be closed by ignorance again.
Just as Jesus washed the feet of the disciples with love we have cleansed the stereotypes and stigmas of society with love. I love my neighbour just as I love Christ.
Jessica Smith, Mount St Benedict: Through this program I have been able to fully understand the meaning of love your neighbour as yourself. The experience has been incredible and life changing
Roweena Walia, Mount St Benedict: Through outreach I’ve met so many beautiful people and it’s been the most amazing experience. Every site that I visited, the people I’ve talked to it has inspired me and changed my outlook on life. The memories will stay with me forever.
Ellen Spencer, Stella Maris College: People fear what they don’t understand and we all need to love everyone as our neighbours J MO has really changed my life forever and I will never forget the inspiring people and experiences! I’m going to miss it so much and it is so so so amazing!!!!
Lorraine Lu, Rosebank College: The inner city immersion has opened my perspective about Sydney and about the hidden organisations that people do not often recognise. It has made me appreciative of what I have and be thankful. I saw people going through obstacles and how strong they are, they are truly the strongest people I have met.
Cheryl Jones, Teacher, Rosebank College: Each time I have the opportunity to work with others from the Good Sam Community I am overwhelmed by the expression of our common values- expressed within our school groups, our service groups and shared with those in Sydney. The best learning in life happens when connecting with other people, finding shared experiences and listening with the ear of our hearts to the different experiences so that our understanding of the world is constantly challenged and transformed for the better.
The week was coordinated by Mark Zilich (Rosebank College) and Christina Liu (Mt St Benedict) who worked very hard to keep the participants motivated and also provided the opportunity for reflection and discussion on the experiences at the end of each day. The week also provided the chance for Josephite Community Aid to lead the group through a simulation game based on the experiences of refugees and the following evening Sr Sarah Puls spoke about the Australian situation for asylum seekers and refugees.
It was a very full week that had many different experiences for everyone. Our thanks to the participants, the staff and the venues who together provided are very real response to who is my neighbour…
Helping out in a community kitchen
Hard at work at the NSW Foodbank
A quiet moment with a new friend
Experiencing the joys of public transport
Some of the 2013 Ministry Outreach participants