The 33rd Spirit of the Arts Performing Arts Festival for Catholic schools and colleges has officially begun.
Speaking at the opening Praise and Worship Liturgy, Thursday 21 July at St Mary’s Cathedral, Vicar for Education and Faith Formation Fr Vincent Glynn encouraged those in attendance to always “put on Christ” in all their undertakings.
Comprising of the Performing Arts Festival and Angelico Art Exhibition, the term-long festival celebrates artistic creativity and talent and this year included 15,000 students from 90 Catholic schools, including 11 regional schools performing in categories of drama/music production, scripture reading, sacred choral music, big band/jazz combo and more.
Attendees included Catholic Arts staff including Chair Darryl Winsor, members of the Catholic Education Commission of Western Australia, Notre Dame School of Education Dean Prof Caroline Mansfield, Catholic staff and student representatives.
In his homily at the opening liturgy, Fr Glynn reflected on the readings of the day, including the parable of the prodigal son, which speaks about the importance of love and forgiveness.
“As Christians we are called to put on Christ,” Fr Glynn said.
“Christian love is not about just being nice to people. Christian love is the love that God sends us through His Son, Jesus Christ – who gives His life on the cross, who suffered and died for us.
“And so Christian love in the Gospel tells us that we must forgive those who hurt us and there are 77 instances that mention forgiveness in the Bible. Christian love is sacrificial, it’s about sacrificing ourselves, for the beauty of others,” he added.
At the conclusion of the event, Catholic Education Western Australia (CEWA) Deputy Executive Director, Wayne Bull, thanked all involved in the making of the festival, including the choir from Corpus Christi who led in the Liturgical hymns.
“I would like to acknowledge the students who will be participating in this year’s festival and thank their teachers for their support and guidance, all the young people involved in the program of events to all participants. I hope that your hard work and dedication will be celebrated,” he said.
“As you participate in the festival, I hope you will have fun doing the best that you can do.”