Opening of the Year Mass
On Monday afternoon we had our Opening Mass of the Year. The religious theme chosen for the mass and for the coming school year is; “Let your light shine so brightly that others can see their way out of the darkness.” The theme ties in with ‘Shine’ written by Ms. Doherty and Ms. Hackett. It is about letting our love, happiness and true spirit radiate out to others so that hopefully we will touch them in positive and helpful ways. Our chaplain, Fr. Hayes, who celebrated the mass, mentioned that light has a source and that source is God, whose love for is is complete and enduring. The light that shines from us is the light of God. The mass began with Cecilian Choir who sang while processing into the darkened Cathedral by candlelight. It was a very powerful and symbolic beginning to our liturgy. The music and singing of Cecilian choir and our senior musicians enriched the celebration and all those involved in reading, reflections and prayers spoke clearly and with confidence. Thanks to all those involved in the preparation of the mass.
Dr. Aisling Memorial Bursary
On Monday, 21st of September there was the presentation of the Dr. Aisling Butler Memorial Bursary. This year’s recipient is Antonia Harold Barry who has just commenced her medical studies in UCC. The bursary was presented to Antonia by John and Lorna Butler, Aisling’s father and sister. Dr. Aisling Butler was a past pupil of the Ursuline Convent Thurles who died tragically in the Air France flight 447 on route from Rio de Janeiro to Paris. Her parents John and Evelyn established a generous bursary in memory of their daughter to be gifted each year to the student who receives the highest points in her Leaving Certificate and who subsequently goes on to study medicine. Antonia thanked John and Lorna, her parents, family, teachers, fellow students and Sr. Bernadette in the boarding school for all their help and support. Ms. Butler, the principal, paid tribute to Dr. Aisling Butler saying that she was hard working, determined with a great sense of fun and school spirit and that she is still sadly missed by those who had met her and knew her.
Heroes and villains were running amok on Wednesday, 23rd of September, as 6th Year students organised an afternoon of heroic and villainous antics to raise money for the Ursuline missions in Kenya. There were ninja turtles, Gru and his minions, the Incredibles, the Powerpuff Girls, Captain America, Captain Jack Sparrow, Batman and many of his nemesis including Poison Ivy, the Joker and Batman. There were even more obscure Superheroes like Captain Flowers. The students organised races on bouncy castles, races on scooters and tricycles, giant Jenga, giant Connect 4, face painting, a photo booth, bouncy castle wrestling and tug of war between the teachers and students. One of the most popular attractions was the haunted house of horrors. A truly terrifying experience for all who dared to enter. The girls and their Year head Ms. Bourke, put a lot of hard work and imagination into organising this fun event and were blessed with sunshine. Overall the Leaving Certs raised €2,500 for Sr. Claire Ursula in Kenya where the money will go directly to helping those who need it most. Well done to everyone who supported the day. It was Marvellous.
Soap Box Public Speaking Competition
Organised by the Tipperary Regional Youth Service, the second annual Soapbox Public Speaking Competition was held in L.I.T. Thurles on Thursday night, 24th September. The topic being discussed was ‘Charity Begins At Home’. Five TY students, Sophie Keane, Sophie Hayes, Emily Bourke, Michaela Kerwick, and Katie Taylor all performed well against some tough opponents. Emily Bourke was selected as the overall winner on the night. She was praised for her lovely delivery which showcased her personality. Emily’s prise is a trip to Brussels later in the year. She also goes on to compete in the Regional Final in Waterford in the coming months. Well done Emily and all our students who took part and to Ms. Quinn for her tutelage.
TY Day out at the Ploughing
All three classes of TY’s set off in the bright sunshine of Tuesday morning, 22nd of September, to join the throngs heading to the 84th National Ploughing Championships in Ratheniska. They were accompanied by Mr. English, Ms. Doherty, Ms. Shortt and Tarcelina. Despite being caught up in the worst of the traffic the UCT crew arrived at the venue with the abundant energy needed for this particular day out. For many of the students the amusement section was the first port of call where they went on waltzers, bumpers and the gravity defying G-force. Many stopped off at the Aldi and Lidl tents for the freebies, got snapped in the Dairy Council photo booth and some had themselves superimposed on the cover of the RTE Guide. The foodhall was a vital pitstop and many decided the crepes with Nutella looked too tempting to pass by. President Michael D was spotted in the crowd and some girls checked out the hurley stands of Joe Canning and local manufacturers Bourke Hurleys. The O’Neill tent was also much visited on the day. Everybody was able to find their way back to the bus at the end of it all with nobody on the missing list. An enjoyable day out was had everyone.
Also during the week the TY’s had a talk given by two ladies from the Thurles Citizen Information Centre. This valuable local service is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. The students found out all about the services that can be accessed through the Citizens Information Centre. They also spoke to the students about an essay writing competition which will be launched to mark the centre’s 40 years in operation.
The Junior team played their first round of the championship against Cashel on Friday, 25th of September. UCT lost by two points after what proved to be an exciting and epic game of football. Ursuline were 9 points up at half time only to go 9 points down in the second half. However they settled themselves again and managed to close the gap to two points. UCT were unlucky not to find the net in the dying moments of the game when they failed to make good a goal opportunity. Junior Cert student Lauren Murtagh, the team captain, led by example playing out of her skin and Niamh Long, also in Junior Cert, had a cracker of a game. The whole team dug deep and should be pleased with this first round performance. Thanks to coaches Ms. Callanan and Mr. Kirby for their training and commitment.
CSPE Guest Speaker
Mr. O’Dochartaigh’s 3rd year CSPE class invited Judge Gerard O’Brien in to speak to them as part of their action project. Mr. O’Brien who is from Thurles, talked to the students about the law and disability. He told them a little about his own background and how he was a teacher for a number of years before he decided to pursue a career in law. He reassured them that it is never too late to follow their desired career path. He also mentioned that cases presented to judges can be complicated with many nuances and that often things are not as clear cut or black and white as they are portrayed in the media. The girls thanked Mr.O’Brien for his talk and taking the time to visit them. They found his speech very interesting and informative.