McAuley was the founder of the Sisters of Mercy, a religious order, initially,
dedicated to the education of poor young catholic women of Dublin and is now a
worldwide order where the education and rights of all young people are first
and foremost in the minds of the educators. Catherine McAuley grew
up in Ireland (born 1778) at a time when Catholics, who were approximately 75 –
80% of the population, where amongst the poorest of the poor. Due to
family circumstances Catherine was personally spared a life of poverty but her
observations of Catholic families living in slums rife with disease and
epidemics, lacking in education and full of wide spread begging never let her
memory. She commenced her “mercy works” early in life, led by her
strong Catholic faith; Catherine always wished to give something to the
poor. Catherine soon grew to realise that the way to help the
young women of Ireland was through education and refuge. In 1827 the
House of Mercy was opened and on the 12th of December 1831 the
congregation of the Sisters of Mercy was established. Catherine’s
strong desire to follow in the footsteps of Jesus led to voluntary poverty for
all Sisters of Mercy and so Catherine’s mission, to be creditable with the
poor, meant it necessary to live in solidarity with them. Catherine
McAuley died on the 11th November 1841 and her legacy lives on
through every Mercy school throughout the world.
The Cross: The Mercy cross is a replica of the ebony and
ivory cross worn by Catherine McAuley. There is no figure on the
cross, signifying that we place ourselves on the cross with Christ in an
attempt to share His journey. Catherine McAuley and her sisters were
unusual in that they did not remain cloistered. The footprints symbolise
the action of walking out into the community to journey with others; to seek
out those in need; to share their burdens.
Our coordinator is Ms Jacqueline Parr
For the most part, students are
in houses along family lines, and should now remain with the same Coordinator
and Home Room Teacher for a number of years. Hopefully, positive and meaningful
relationships can be built over this time which enhance your child’s overall
ability to learn academically, socially and spiritually at St. Patrick’s.
Should you have concerns about how your student is coping with
College life, or specific parts of their schooling, please contact the College
and ask to speak to the relevant House Coordinator. For minor issues such as
lateness, absence or minor uniform matters, speaking to your child’s Home
Room Teacher may be more productive initially.
One of the ways in which each house builds a sense of community
is through of the specific sporting carnivals held each year.