A New Year and a New Name


Welcome to parents/carers new to St John Paul II Catholic College, and welcome back to regular readers from previous years.
In one way, everybody is new to our new school name. It will take some getting used to.
Naming is quite a powerful business. Turn 13 and suddenly you’re a ‘teenager’, ready or not. Most women still choose to change their name on marrying, and some prefer Ms to Mrs.
Our faith tradition has many examples of new names marking significant change. Abram became Abraham. Saul became Paul. Jesus named Peter “Rock”, perhaps seeing Peter’s future growth into solid leadership despite some major wobbles along the way. Taking a new name at the sacrament of Confirmation marks a strengthened commitment. Cardinals take a new name when elected pope.
Though the name change takes place at a particular point in time, growing into the change and feeling comfortable in the changed identity takes longer. And feeling the loss of the earlier status is only natural at times.

‘To live is to change, and to be perfect is to have changed often’, said Cardinal John Henry Newman more than a century ago, noting that change and growth go hand-in-hand.
Being on ‘the way’ as it passes through this land means the scenery and the encounters keep changing; the constants are the journey itself and those who walk with us.
 Martin Graham ~ School Counsellor