Advent

In four weeks, we will have someone very special among us.  I will not tell you His name, but instead will describe Him in a few sentences.  While describing Him, I will make reference to some of your subjects and I would like you to guess whom I’m referring to.

In Chemistry, He turned water to wine.

In Biology, He was born without the normal conception.

In Physics, He disapproved the law of gravity when He ascended into heaven.

In History, He was the beginning and the end.

In Economics, He disapproved the law of diminishing return by feeding 5000 men with two fishes & 5 loaves of bread.

Can you guess who He is?  He is our Lord, Jesus Christ and the Greatest Man in History.

He had no servants, yet they called Him Master.

He had no degree, yet they called Him Teacher.

He had no medicines, yet they called Him Healer.

He had no army, yet kings feared Him.

He won no military battles, yet He conquered the world.

He committed no crime, yet they crucified Him.

He was buried in a tomb, yet He lives today.

My dear girls, the time has come to welcome our Dear Lord, Jesus Christ.  Yesterday was the first Sunday of Advent, which marks the beginning of the religious year.  It is a period to prepare ourselves spiritually for the arrival of Jesus through staying awake, praying and almsgiving.  Let us begin this Advent season with hope and joy in our hearts so that we can spread peace to those around us.

 

 

Progressing towards Personal Well-being

Today, I would like to talk about our monthly theme “Progressing towards Personal Well-being”.

To be a good student, you have to excel in studies, make good use of opportunities to develop your potential and make progress in your well-being.  Today, I will confine my message to making progress in your well-being.

Last year, I introduced the Profile of HFCC Graduates which is also printed in your student handbook.  Do you remember the four qualities stated in the Profile of HFCC Graduates?  They are being “Proactive in Charity and Humility”, “United in Love”, “Dynamic in Learning” and having “Faith in Action”.

Now that you know the four qualities, have you thought deeper about why we have chosen these particular qualities for you to develop?  In the Canossian education, we uphold the spirit of Our Foundress, St Magdalene of Canossa, of being charitable and humble.  Thus, we have put “Proactive in Charity and Humility” as the first quality.  Here at HFCC, there are many opportunities for you to develop this unique quality.  Let me give you an example of how this was put into practice by some of students.

In the summer of 2017, our S4 students, Rachel Luk, Natalie Ho, Athena Wong, Anna Chan and Kory Ko, offered to help the less privileged through a service camp organized by the Canossian Schools Board Secondary Sector.  They visited the homeless and the elderly and had the chance to learn about the operation of the leftover recycling scheme in wet markets.  These girls were more aware of the social issues such as poverty and social welfare in Hong Kong.  After the camp, they reflected that they had learned to cherish everything in their daily lives and were grateful to God for His blessings.  They realized the importance of showing compassion towards their family, friends and even those in need.  I believe that they have made good progress in their well-being through this service camp.  In addition, this valuable learning opportunity has motivated them to develop a growing concern for the well-being of the community and the world at large.

My dear girls, to be proactive in charity and humility, you can take an active role in our school programmes like the Caritas Bazaar, Famine Lunch and various school-based service learning activities in order to show your compassion for humanity, particularly those less privileged.  We would like you to make choices in life in the perspective of charity and humility and display your love and empathy towards humanity.

I hope that you can make progress in your well-being by building up these four qualities throughout your six years at this school.  Now, let’s pray to God to grant us the determination to progress in our whole-person development.

 

 

Actualizing Individual Potential

Everyone is talented in some way or the other but making good use of our talents is what sets us apart from others.  Here at HFCC, many teachers are making the most of their talents.  Let me give you some examples.  Our teacher, Mr Siu, is not only talented at Mathematics but also shows a keen interest in this subject.  This is evident from the fact that since he was young, he put a lot of effort in solving Mathematical problems and participating in Math-related activities.   Mr Siu turned his passion into his career and is now helping students develop their interest in this subject.  Likewise, Miss Rebecca Lam, who has seized every opportunity to practice and perform in front of others is now getting students to realize their potential in Music.  This is indeed what God wants us to do.  We need to develop our God-given talents for the goodness of all mankind.  In the Bible, God says, “We all have different gifts, each of which came because of the grace God gave us.” (Romans 12:6 NCV).

How can you discover your God-given talents?  One way is to enter competitions. A competition helps motivate one to further excel in an area and offers a lot more reward than just the winning prize.  Through a competition, you can realize your strengths and weaknesses.  You can make use of this platform to demonstrate your talent and it is a stepping-stone to achieve higher goals in life.  I would like to further explain the reason you should participate in competitions.

First, it allows you to showcase your talent.  Many students feel it is difficult to express their talents in school.  Assignments, tests and exams do not always capture your unique skills or accurately measure the ability to apply these skills to real-world problems.  In contrast, competitions are based on solving “real” cases and problems.  By participating in a competition, you have the opportunity to show your talent and apply your skills.  In turn, the rewards of competitions, whether tangible or otherwise, can help you achieve your professional goals which may lead to the job of your dreams. 

Second, you get to challenge yourself.  Obviously, not everyone who enters a competition will win. However, even if you do not receive any prize, you can still benefit from the opportunity to challenge yourself.  You can acquire new knowledge and develop new skills like problem-solving skills, analytical skills, interpersonal skills and so on.  You need to focus on the learning process rather than the outcome.  A success or apparent failure is just another stepping stone to the next point along the way.  Whatever the outcome, you have to focus on what you have gained and how to keep on developing your strengths.

Third, competitions allow you to test your ideas and see how viable they are.  If you are committed to actualizing your potential and realizing your dreams, any time spent on fine-tuning your ideas is a great investment.  Time spent on this is what allows you to learn and grow.  Competitions can provide an enriching and stimulating experience for you to apply your knowledge to a specific and practical problem.

My dear girls, I encourage you to join competitions like the Hong Kong Schools Speech Festival, Hong Kong Schools Music Festival, STEM-related competitions and so on, in order to unleash your potential.  I hope that you explore your boundaries and expand your horizons.  Now, let’s pray to God to help us make good use of our talents to actualize our potential.

 

 

Getting Prepared for a New Start

In the opening ceremony, I shared with you two methods that could  help you become a persistent learner.  This morning, I would like to share with you a Gospel story from Matthew Chapter 25: 1-13 about the parable of the ten girls.  This may help you reflect on yourselves.

“At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten girls who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom.  Five of them were foolish and five were wise.  The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them.  The wise ones, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps.  The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.

At midnight, the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’

Then all the girls woke up and trimmed their lamps.  The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’

‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you.  Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’

But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived.  The girls who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet.  And the door was shut.

Later the others also came.  ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’

But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’

Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.”

Jesus concluded the story by asking us to be prepared, to be on our guard, because we do not know the day or the hour.

My dear girls, have you ever forgotten to bring your learning materials to class? Have you ever forgotten to meet the deadline of submitting your assignment?  Have you ever forgotten to study a topic for a quiz?  If you have, you probably have realized the importance of good preparation.

I see that many of you have prepared yourselves with new school bags, new uniform and even a new haircut.  It seems that you have got everything brand new, just because this is the beginning of a new academic year. 

However, what’s more important than all these new things is getting yourself academically prepared for better performance in this new scholastic year.   With good preparation, not only will you enjoy learning, but you will also be a step closer to success.   So on the second day of the school year, I earnestly call upon each and every one of you here to exercise your self-discipline in order to get ready, prepared and organized to lead a successful school year in the loving kindness of our dear Lord.  Remember what our Foundress says:
The human heart is in the hands of God who arranges everything with tenderness and for our own good.

Now, let’s pray to God for our determination in equipping ourselves to cultivate a love of learning.

 

 

Persistent Learning Abundant Grace

The beginning of a new school year is a good time for you to plan, prepare and set goals.  The need for a clear framework is essential to excel in both studies and personality growth.  To do well in these two areas, you need to seize every opportunity that lies ahead of you so as to stretch your potential.  With sustained efforts, it is not difficult to achieve what you want.

On the first day of the new school year, I call upon all of you to be united in love in your continuous commitment to improving yourselves and serving the school.  This year’s theme, “Persistent Learning   Abundant Grace” reminds you to further develop in your academic pursuit and life planning.  You should have a sense of focus for learning and be persistent in your endeavor.  At school, there are different occasions for you to show persistence in learning and cultivate a love for it.  Being persistent is a skill that can help you to overcome failure, reach a goal and achieve what you desire.  Indeed, a lack of persistence or "giving up too soon" is one of the most common reasons for failure.  How can you be a persistent learner? 

One way is to keep working on your goals daily.  Doing something daily will not only shorten the time for you to achieve your goal but will keep you motivated in learning. The longer it takes to achieve a goal, the more chances are that you will lose motivation.  Your goal may seem difficult to achieve at first, but if you break down the learning process into smaller stages, learning will be easier to manage and you will sense a feeling of accomplishment at every stage.  For example, if you want to understand some abstract concepts in subjects like Mathematics, Science, Economics, Geography and so on, you have to spend time studying the concepts and working on subject-related problems every day, so that your cognitive abilities and high-order thinking skills can be enhanced.

Second, persist beyond failure.  Failure is often used as an excuse or reason to give up easily.  The most successful people in life have ALL failed.  They persist because they know that failure is simply part of achievement.  For example, Bill Gates who is the co-founder of Microsoft failed in his first attempt in business.  His early idea did not work, but he did not give up.  He accepted the failure and tried again.  He persisted and eventually developed Microsoft into a global empire.  The key to success is realizing that failure is a part your learning process.  When you have difficulties in your studies, you should not give up easily.  Instead, find some ways to overcome the barriers by reaching out to teachers or classmates for help.

Dear Holy Familians, I would encourage all of you to be united in God’s love and work towards our school’s year theme.  You should have confidence in yourself and I believe that all Holy Familians can actualize God’s gifts through persistent learning.  Our past student, Ms Elaine Liu, who now works as a barrister, was invited to be the guest of honour in the S6 graduation ceremony.  Her persistence in learning has made her successful in her career.  She reminded us to work hard to secure a solid foundation and read widely to gain much food for thought in order to develop our analytical skills.

Last year, a group of S5 students entered a scientific invention competition organised by the Education Bureau and only one student in this five-member team studied Science.  One might have thought that the chances for this team to win were slim since the other four students didn’t study Science.  However, these 4 students were not threatened by this challenge.  They went through many science books, did numerous online research and sought guidance from teachers.  Finally, the dedication of these five students granted them second place and a green trip to Korea to further learn about technology development.  This is a proof of their hard work being paid off through persistent learning and they were showered with abundant grace in their learning process.  This valuable experience not only equipped them with knowledge but also enhanced their Student Learning Profile.  Later on, this group of students will share their learning experiences with you.  Their encouraging result demonstrates our students’ ability to engage in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) activities.  I would like you to learn from this group of students that even if you are a non-science student, you can still exhibit a sense of wonder in STEM activities and explore innovative development in technology.  This is important as technology is continuously expanding into every aspect of our lives in the 21st century. 

Let us all remember a verse from the Bible taken from John, Chapter 16, Verse 33.

Only by working with perseverance and trusting God will we be able to demonstrate to our dear Lord in heaven that we are excelling in our work.  Thank you and may God bless you all.

 

2017 - 2018 Principal's Message
2016 - 2017 Principal's Message
2015 - 2016 Principal's Message