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Master of the Order Opens New Classroom Block at Newbridge College

On Friday, 23 March 2018, Fr Bruno Cadore, Master of the Order, blessed and opened a new class-room block, at Newbridge College, in the town of Newbridge, Co. Kildare, 49 km south-west of Dublin city centre. The school founded, with 50 pupils, as a boarding school for boys in 1852, is now a co-educational, secondary day-school with 884 students and a teaching staff of 73. Despite falling numbers, Dominican friars remain active in the College as chaplains and as teachers of religious knowledge, as well as serving on the Board of Governors.

The new block, of 17 additional rooms, is named the Walker Building, after Fr Dominic Walker who, with Fr Nicholas Freyne, founded the college in response to the educational needs arising after Catholics in Ireland and Britain were granted emancipation from the Penal Laws.

Speaking to the assembly of teachers, students and guests, Fr Bruno reflected on the values described in the College’s statement of its vision and its educational philosophy. The College is ‘dedicated to promoting, in co-operation with parents and guardians, the religious, spiritual, moral, academic, aesthetic, cultural, physical, emotional, and social development of all the students committed to its care.’ Further, the College seeks to impart ‘values for living in a way that shows respect for all that is noble and true. It acknowledges that each of its students is uniquely gifted and it seeks to provide each one of them with curricular and extra-curricular opportunities that are suited to his/her aptitudes and aspirations.’ Fr Bruno saw in this commitment to cooperative action and to being actively respectful of the unique gifts of each individual an ongoing expression of the Dominican ethos. And he wished parents, students and staff continuing success.

 

Youth 2000 Christmas Retreat, Newbridge College

Last weekend saw the Youth 2000 Christmas Retreat in Newbridge College, a secondary school under the care of the Irish Province of Dominicans. We Dominicans are involved in Youth 2000 in all sorts of ways – Fr John Harris is the national spiritual director, many Youth 2000 prayer meetings are held in our priories, some of the student brothers are spiritual directors to prayer groups, and many of us help out in different ways at national and regional retreats (in the photos below you can see Br Philip giving a wonderful talk on Our Lady, and her role in his conversion). In fact, even before joining the Order, many of us have had deeply formative experiences at Youth 2000 events. It’s always a joy, then, to return to these gatherings, where Christ is in the centre as the ever-new source of life, for the young people who are meeting Him for the first time, and for the more mature too!site pic 1 site pic 2 site pic 3