LifeLink Launch 2014
LifeLink Launch – 2014
Irene McCormack Catholic College, 18 Bradman Drive, Butle
Students gather in preparation for the launch of LifeLink 2014 © Ron Tan
Archbishop Costelloe and Bishop Sproxton joined a number of dignatories at the 2014 launch of LifeLink hosted by Irene McCormack Catholic College in Butler in the presence of representatives from Brighton Primary School, St Andrews Catholic Primary School and Butler College.
Bishop Sproxton reminded staff and students, many of whom were watching via live video stream, that LifeLink was established in 1994 by Emeritus Archbishop Hickey to identify and unite Church based welfare services.
“By collecting all these agencies under one banner, we communicate our message so much better” said Bishop Sproxton. “LifeLink is not a welfare organisation - it is the fundraising and promotional arm supporting, and most importantly funding, the work of social service agencies in the Archdiocese” which “currently helps fund many wonderful organisations” and “provide services and support to help the homeless, people battling drugs and other addictions, people with mental health disorders, people with intellectual or physical disability, abused women and children, the unemployed and disadvantaged, migrants and refugees, the lonely and the isolated.
“LifeLink supported agencies reach out to help more than 31,000 Western Australians in need each year” he continued, “equivalent to the entire populations of Butler, Merriwa, Ridgewood and Clarkson.”
He spoke of how “LifeLink agencies deliver more than $47 million in professional programs and direct services to help people in need throughout WA each year. Thankfully, much of this work is funded by Government grants and service contracts and with the generous support of Lotterywest.
“Governments recognise that community services established by the Catholic Church operate at the highest level of performance and professionalism, and are conducted in a moral, responsible and ethical manner.”
Bishop Sproxton challenged the young people present to help raise an extra $1 million shortfall “to ensure our LifeLink agencies continue to respond positively when people reach out for help”.
Finally, the Bishop reminded staff and pupils that LifeLink Day is an educational and fundraising initiative offering the opportunity to:
- Think about people in need within the community,
- Learn how the Church reaches out to help people, right here at home, through the work of our LifeLink agencies,
- Participate, by joining together to raise funds to help people in need.
- Have Fun organising some special fundraising activity in your school.
Archbishop Costelloe spoke passionately about the place of LifeLink in the life of the Church as its heartbeat in society. “You can’t be a Christian, or at least not a very serious one, if you don’t have a heart for those who are in difficulty and need a helping hand”, the Archbishop said. “You can’t really say you are following [Jesus] if you ignore what he said and what he did.”
The Archbishop threw out a challenge to the young people to “open your minds and your hearts, even more than you have already, to this man who once shook the world up by what he said and by what he did and who wants to shake our world up today, by what you say and by what you do.
“When you begin to scratch the surface of our society, and maybe even the surface of your school and your circle of friends and your family, you can quickly begin to see that not everything is as good as we would like it to be, not just for ourselves but for others as well.”
Students were then told how “the whole programme of LifeLink is the idea that, as disciples of Jesus, we are meant, even when life is tough for us, to be the ones who reach out to others. While LifeLink itself is focussed on raising money so that the Catholic community in WA is in a position to offer practical help to those in need,” the Archbishop said, “its success depends on whether or not the members of the Catholic community are really tuned in to the message of Jesus – it depends on whether or not you as individuals and as school communities, are really tuned into the message of Jesus.”
Archbishop Costelloe then asked the question: “Am I closed in on myself, focussed on my own needs, intent on organising my life to suit my own wishes, or do I have a heart that can really feel for others and will drive me to do something for them?”
He then spoke of his special prayer for pupils and staff, that God would place “a new heart and to put a new spirit is us”. “May God do that for each one of you so that a spirit of generosity, and enthusiasm, and I hope too a spirit of good fun and excitement, will be at the centre of everything you do to raise money for LifeLink this year, and that you will each find that your hearts are beating strongly as you begin to plan your fund-raising activities.”
L to R - Thomas Tang (School Captain), Mr Robert Marshall (Principal), Archbishop Timothy Costelloe, Hayley James (School Captain) © Ron Tan
The Archbishop ended by announcing the winners of the 2014 Archbishop’s Spirit Award: Prendiville Catholic College, who last year were able to raise $10,000, and Irene McCormack Catholic College who raised just over $5,000.
Those present at the event included:
Mr Robert Marshall – College Principal, Mr John Power - Deputy Principal, Mrs Debra Sayce – Director of Religious Education representing Dr Tim McDonald, Executive Director of the CEOWA, Mr James Parker - Communications & Media Manager, Mr Brett Mendez - Manager of LifeLink, Ms Bernadette and Mr John McCormack – siblings of College Patroness Sr Irene McCormack, Mr John Quigley – MP for Butler, Cllr Glennis Parker representing the Mayor of the City of Wanneroo, the principal and students from Brighton Catholic Primary School, staff and students from St Andrew’s Catholic Primary School and Butler College.
Archbishop Costelloe meets with John and Bernadette McCormack, siblings of college patroness Irene McCormack © Ron Tan
Pupils from Brighton Catholic Primary School with Archbishop Costelloe © Ron Tan
Principal and pupils from St Andrew's Catholic Primary School with Archbishop Costelloe © Ron Tan