Sixth Year Retreat to Rome

Report by Colette Carr

A group of 24 sixth year pupils, along with DHT of Upper School Mrs Mulholland, RE teacher Miss McGinness, two former teachers, Mr Crossan and Mr Knighton, and priests Father Paul Morton, and Father Frances King made their pilgrimage to Rome on Monday the 13th of February.

The trip, organised by Alba Tours, saw Pilgrimage leader and former chaplain Father Morton take the group out to Lazio for a very memorable experience. Staying in a convent near St Peter’s Basilica, Mrs Mulholland tells, the group travelled all over Rome. While visiting all the major Roman tourist attractions, they also saw mass celebrated in many churches, including St Peter’s, climbed the Dome and Scala Sancta, experienced the four major Basilicas – St Peter’s, St John Lateran’s, St Mary Major’s and St Paul’s beyond the walls – and also got the chance to view the Vatican museums and gardens, which were particularly beautiful.

However, the highlights of the trip had to be the mass celebrated in the tomb of St Peter, and the special mention from the Pope in his audience with English speakers, in which they sang a hymn for him.

The trip had been planned since September by Father Morton, and fundraising events were planned. Mrs Mulholland has expressed her grateful thanks to Father Morton and Alba Tours for organising the trip, Monsignor Cushley in Rome for sorting their access to Scavi and the Papal mention, and also, former pupils studying at Scots College Collum Martin and Kenneth MacDermid for booking their wonderful meals.

The trip was all they expected it to be and more, with everyone loving it, Mr Knighton summing it up with, “Sore legs. Happy tummies. Happy eyes and brains.”

Additional from Mrs Sinclair

The Rome Pilgrims were present at the General audience with the Pope where they were highlighted and sang a verse of our school hymn.  At the end of the English speaking audience the pope especially welcomed the students of Our Lady’s High Shool and gave them a smile and a wave.

You can watch the whole audience here.

Alternatively, you can see our group in action if you drag the cursor to the following times:

34 mins – 36 mins

40 mins, 40 seconds for about 20 seconds.

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Mr Crossan

Melissa and Daniel went to interview Mr Crossan as he is leaving this year

Why are you leaving Our Lady’s High?
I would like to move on to do new things. I’ve been teaching long enough.

How long have you worked here?
18 years

Have you enjoyed working here at OLHS?
Absolutely! It’s a terrific school.

What’s your best memory of Our Lady’s High?
The day I arrived here

Did you always want to be a teacher ?
No – I wanted to be a lorry driver.

What are your plans after leaving?
Travel around the world – Eastern Europe,  relax and learn to play the guitar. And do whatever my wife tells me.

What will you miss the most ?
The company and the pupils

What advice would you offer to anyone wanting to be a teacher?
You’ve really got to want to teach – don’t be a teacher just to get a job

Who was your favourite person to work with?
Everyone, I couldn’t pick a favourite

Would you come back if you had the chance?
Yes, I’ll visit for special events if asked! (of course he will !!)

We hope Mr Crossan  has enjoyed his time here at Our Lady’s High and farewell !

International Education Award

Our Lady’s is proud to be one of only three secondary schools in North Lanarkshire to receive the North Lanarkshire International Education Award for promoting pupils’ knowledge of global issues and Scottish culture.

The Award recognises both classwork and extra-curricular initiatives such as the school’s continuing links with the Kamwokya Community in Uganda, our Citizens’ Cafe, the Sensory Garden and St Andrew’s Day celebrations, along with a variety of research tasks including Scottish mysteries, musical instruments worldwide and food culture in Italy.

Headteacher, Mrs Kathleen Sinclair and Depute Head, Mr John Crossan received the award on behalf of the school from Mrs Christine Pollock, Executive Director of Learning and Leisure Services for North Lanarkshire Council.

Last days of term, 2009

It’s been a busy couple of days at OLHS, as we  rolled towards the last day of term.

Miss McGhee offered to torment all comers with Singstar, although there was a noticeable lack of teacherly singing. (This may have been for Health and Safety reasons, but we haven’t been told for definite.) It’s also not been confirmed whether those who chose to go to class had already passed along the English corridor.

While some elves were busy sewing stockings, the snowstorms obviously left the yard looking far too untidy for some people, who appeared to be clearing all the snow away with shovels, before building themselves a friend.

Meanwhile, aliens attempted to communicate with strange patterns in the snow. There was an attempt at inter-species communication, but perhaps we were using too advanced a language.

Staff have been collecting biscuits and chocolates for senior citizens (NB Mr Crossan was organiser, not recipient) while 1st and 2nd year pupils have been gathering food and toiletries which were wrapped and delivered to the Homeless unit in Motherwell.

We ended the term with a service bringing OLHS and Bothwellpark High Schools together to enjoy carols and Christmas songs, with beautiful performances by the choir and the 1st and 2nd year Drama Club.

I hope that everyone reading this has a peaceful and joyful Christmas, and that New Year brings you only good things.

See you in 2010!