2019 - 2020 Principal's Message

Cultivating Sincerity in Love

Today, I would like to talk about our monthly theme :Cultivating Sincerity in Love;. To understand more about your attributes and character, you were invited to take part in a survey on character strength in September 2019. It was encouraging to know that for all of you, Love ranked second in the overall result of this survey.

Love and the Capacity to Love is one of the 24 character strengths identified by researchers in positive psychology. If Love is your top strength, you value close relations with others. Those with Love as a top strength do not just express it romantically, but through compassion for others, be it close friends or strangers. They also accept others・ views and open themselves up to others.

In order to show what this character strength looks like in action, I・d like you to try and reflect on the following questions:

The first question is: Do you love your teachers? I am sure you do as you are already preparing for the Teachers・ Day, which is a month away. On that day, most of you write messages to show your respect for your teachers. But that should not be the only day to do so. In fact, you can show your respect for them anytime by paying full attention and being responsive in class. Avoid lying down on the desk, falling asleep or using your mobile phone during lessons. Your teachers spend a lot of time on lesson preparation and it is hoped that all of you can appreciate their efforts. Moreover, as students, you have the responsibility to submit your assignments on time but not require your teachers to chase you for your work. When teachers talk to you, it would be good if you could listen to them patiently and respond politely with a pleasant attitude. They always want the best for you and a little empathy and gratitude from you can mean a lot to them.

The second question is: Do you love the non-teaching staff, including the janitors at this school? Every day, the janitors arrive at school before 7 a.m., only to provide you with a favourable learning environment just so that you can learn effectively. In some countries, including Japan, students are required to clean the classrooms themselves but you don・t have to do any of this. It is all done for you. If you want to show your respect to the janitors, keep your school premises clean. Dispose of any rubbish or your lunch utensils properly, keep your belongings tidily in your classrooms and avoid writing anything on school property. It takes you only a minute to write something on your desk but it takes them about 10 minutes to remove that. Try as much as you can to show your compassion for those who think about you.

 

My last question is: Do you love your schoolmates? If you do, try not to hurt their feelings, especially on social media. Everyone is unique and you have to respect diverse views from schoolmates instead of forcing them to follow your perspectives or isolating them. In a group learning task, try to invite those being isolated to join you. According to the bible, Matthews Chapter 25, Verse 10, Jesus said :Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me;. Let・s put our prejudice and arrogance aside, and follow in footsteps of Jesus Christ who overflew in loving care towards his neighbours, embraced diversity and offered help as far as possible. To maintain good peer relationship, give more than you expect in a relationship and let go of little things.

In the past couple of months, I have shared with you stories on respect and responsibility. In fact, these two qualities are the very core values of Love. To maintain a harmonious school environment full of Love, lending a helping hand to one other, doing simple things like being a good listener or even giving compliments can be a very powerful love booster. You must not lose sight of openness, inclusivity, reason, mutual respect and duty, and be continually inspired by the virtues of God・s Love. Let・s pray to God for his love and grace so that we abide faithfully by our school motto, United in Love.

 

Staying Awake with Focus during Advent

Today, I would like to talk about how we can stay awake and be focused during Advent. Advent is the time when we prepare for the coming of Jesus. For centuries, Christians have tried to predict the precise date on which Jesus will return. As the year 1000 approached, the level of excitement rose. People were certain the Lord would return that year, but he did not come. In more recent times, there are still some speculations about Jesus・ return. Indeed, Christians who spend hours calculating the date of the second coming of Christ are not only wasting time, they are missing the point of Jesus・ clear teaching. According to Matthews, chapter 24, verse 36, it reads: .About that actual day and time no one knows V not even the angels in Heaven, nor the Son, only the Father.・

 

 

When Jesus returns, he will look for those who, though busy and active, are waiting for him with eagerness and trusting in him for their salvation.  In such people, he will expect to find behavior which is worthy of those chosen to be representatives of his kingdom: those who are kind, patient, tolerant, forgiving and truly loving.  To be his chosen one, we must learn to behave in the presence of the invisible Lord as we would in his actual presence. 

 

To prepare ourselves during Advent, we need to stay awake and be focused on how we can bring about positive changes within ourselves.  In other words, we need to reflect on our actions and ask for forgiveness for what we have not done well.  As Holy Familians, you are called to reflect on your way of life and make changes accordingly.  These changes require self-discipline, which is both a challenge and a commitment one needs to face in life in order to clear the way for the coming of our Lord.  My dear girls, are you ready for the challenge of being a disciplined Holy Familian?  Have you started reflecting on how you can prepare yourselves for Jesus’ arrival?  Put your studies before any habits that are unproductive.  Spend five minutes daily in silence before God to bring you closer to the spirit of Christ.  Be especially kind to your parents by speaking courteously to them after a day’s work.  It is important to look back at the way we live our lives, and to start anew in order for us to receive Jesus into our hearts.

Let us now pray to the Lord to ask for his blessings to strengthen us with the spirit of courage and resilience that will allow us to improve our self-discipline and relationships with one another, especially with God and in particular, our family members.

 

 
 

Developing a Culture of Respect

Today, I would like to talk about our monthly theme :Developing a Culture of Respect;. Let me begin with a story.

One day, a girl went to buy a parrot from the Bird Market in Mongkok. In one of the bird shops, the shop owner showed the girl some parrots. The girl asked, :How much is this orange parrot?; The shop owner said, :$3000.; The girl was curious and asked the shop owner why it was so expensive. The shop owner explained, :This parrot is very special. It knows how to sing.; The girl then asked, :What about the red one?; The shop owner answered, :That one costs $5000 as it can sing in different languages.; The girl asked :What about the blue one?; The shop owner replied, :This one is $8,000.; The girl was shocked and asked for the reason. Then, the shop owner replied, :I don・t know, but the other two parrots call it boss.

The story ends here. Respect is a feeling of admiration for someone or something as a result of their attitudes, qualities, abilities and achievements. If you want to earn the respect of others, then you should show kindness and respect to everyone you encounter. Take the example of the blue parrot in my story. The two other parrots called it boss as they admired the blue one. Respect is not demanded but earned and this can be done by adjusting our mindset and showing respect for others. If you gain the respect of others, then this will boost your self-esteem and self-worth, two important qualities I talked about in my sharing last month.

 

Every one of us has to show respect at school, at university, at work, in a family and so on. As students, you are expected by your teachers to show respect in the following aspects:

  • Greet each other politely with eye contact
  • Attend classes on time and be attentive
  • Don・t lie down on the desk or fall asleep during lessons, but pay full attention and be responsive in class
  • Respect diverse ideas and opinions
  • Listen actively to others
  • Do your assignments or tasks with attention to quality
  • Return others・ property in a good condition
  • Don・t make fun of, tease or gossip about your teachers and peers
  • Avoid using IT to bully or harass any other person and avoid spreading rumours
  • Communicate with others in a respectful manner, both inside and outside school and especially on social media platforms
  • Respect and comply with school policies or regulations
  • Offer help and be kind

In a school environment where respect is encouraged, students can be more engaged in learning and will stay away conflicts and misunderstandings. According to the Bible, Romans, Chapter 12, verses 9-10, it reads: :Let love be sincere; hate what is evil, hold on to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; anticipate one another in showing honour.; Here, we all are reminded to show love to others by forgiving, accepting, honouring and respecting them. Now, let・s pray to our dear Lord to bless us with these qualities so that we can show His love to those around us.

 

Nurturing Responsibility

 

Today, I would like to talk about our monthly theme :Nurturing Responsibility;. Responsibility is a duty or obligation we need to fulfil and in doing so, we also have to bear the consequences of our actions. All of us are not born with the sense of responsibility. However, we can easily cultivate this trait within ourselves by adjusting our mindset and being responsible for our actions. If you are a responsible person, you will gain the respect of others and this will in turn boost your self-esteem and self-worth

Every one of us has certain responsibilities: responsibilities at school, at university, at work, in a family and so on.  As students, you are expected by your teachers to be responsible for your actions and exhibit the following types of behaviour:

 

  • Attend classes on time and be attentive
  • Acquire study skills like jotting down notes and paying full attention in class
  • Show respect for teachers
  • Complete assignments or tasks in a timely manner with attention to quality of work
  • Demonstrate academic integrity and honesty
  • Avoid making excuses or telling lies for negative behaviour
  • Communicate with others in a respectful manner, both inside and outside school and especially on social media platforms
  • Do pre-lesson preparation
  • Do revision and be engaged learners who dedicate sufficient time to school work
  • Respect and comply with school policies or regulations
  • Respect diverse ideas and opinions
  • Identify, develop and implement a plan to achieve personal, educational or careers goals
  • Avoid using IT to bully or harass any other person

At school, teachers are committed to nurture the sense of responsibility in their students and help them prepare for their lives ahead through educating them. It is hoped that when you grow up, you can take full responsibility for everything you do.

According to the Bible, Romans, Chapter 14, verses 10 and 12, it reads: :For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God. So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.; Here, we all are reminded that we will have to give an account to God someday for our life and should be accountable for every action we take. Now, let・s pray to our dear Lord for granting us the grace to accept His love and gospel. Let・s learn to cultivate a positive mindset and nurture our responsibility under His love and care.

Starting the Year with Positive Affirmation

 

Today, I would like to talk about our monthly theme :Starting the Year with Positive Affirmation;. Before I explain how we can do so, let me share with you a short story.

In this story, there are two fictional characters. One is a tall candle while another one is a short candle. Both of them are given the task of lighting up a small flat with two rooms. Now, you may think this is impossible as one candle can only be used in each room at one time. Thinking about the task, the tall candle confidently tells the short candle :I can easily light up both rooms at the same time.; The short candle asks, :How can this be done?;. The tall candle then answers, :I am very tall. My owner can skilfully cut me into two halves and place one in each room. In this way, I can be used to light up both rooms. However, you can・t do so as you are short and you have limitations.; To this, the short candle responds, :Though I cannot be cut into two halves like you, I can also light up both rooms at the same time. This can be done simply by filling the two rooms with large mirrors on all sides. Once I am lit, the mirrors will reflect my light and send beams of light in both rooms.; The tall candle becomes speechless at the small candle・s explanations. The story ends here.

The moral of this story is that the usefulness of our gifts from God depends very much on whether we know how to make good use of them. By the grace of God, we all are blessed with different gifts or talents. Everyone has limitations but that should not come in our way to achieve our goals. By being aware of our limitations and dealing with them accordingly, we gain strength, courage and confidence to overcome obstacles. One way of dealing with limitations is by being positive and believing in ourselves.

The above story was chosen also to highlight the importance of a candle. A candle symbolizes light in the darkness of one・s life. As we begin the second week of the school year, I earnestly call upon you all to light the candle in your heart and be the lantern who gives light to people around you. My dear girls, the efforts you put in your studies and the humble service you offer will definitely bring joy to others, including your teachers and parents who have inculcated good values in you. Moreover, with God's candle in our hearts, we will be blessed as our Lord says, "I will guide you along the pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you." Our Foundress also reminds us that the human heart is in the hands of God who arranges everything with tenderness and for our own good. As a true Holy Familian, take pride in what you do to reflect God's light to others. Now, let・s pray to God for granting us the strength, courage and confidence to start the year with positive affirmation.

Cultivating a Positive Mindset

 

Welcome back to Holy Family! Praise be the Lord for the blessing of our school reopening ceremony. Wish you all a blessed, healthy and fruitful new academic year.

During the long summer break, I hope you have reflected on your performance in the previous year and are now ready to face the new scholastic year with renewed spirit and enthusiasm. To make this school year fruitful, let・s all develop a positive mindset to help us keep moving towards our goals. This year, our yearly theme is :Cultivating a Positive Mindset;. If you have the right mindset, you will not give up easily. But, have you asked yourself what a right mindset is? To illustrate this, I would like to ask two students the following questions.

The first question is: Would you raise your hand to answer a teacher・s question even when you are not sure of your answer?

Student A says, :No, I do not want to lose face.;

Student B says, :Yes, I would raise my hand because if even I do make a mistake, I will be corrected by my teacher. I can then learn from my mistake.;

The second question is: If you fail in a test even after you have worked hard, how would you react? Let・s listen to their responses to this scenario in 8 different ways. Please listen carefully.

Student A says, :I am a total failure. I am useless!;

Student B says, :There must be something I don・t understand. I need to work hard and find out where I・m wrong.;

Student A says, :My IQ only allows me to get to this mark. I am stupid!;

Student B says, :I want to know how I can do better next time. I believe that I have the ability to do so.;

Student A says, :Life is unfair. I have bad luck!;

Student B says, :Luckily, I still have time to catch up. It・s never too late to try.;

Student A says, :I have already done my best and all my efforts are useless. It・s useless to try hard!;

Student B says, :I have not worked hard enough - I need to try harder!;

Student A says, :I will try but do not expect me to do well.;

Student B says, :I will keep trying until I get it right. After all, practice makes perfect.;

Student A says, :My teacher does not like me, so she gives me a low mark.;

Student B says, :My teacher would like me to improve. I will seek advice from my teacher. I・m sure she will help me.;

Student A says, :My classmates will laugh at me.;

Student B says, :My classmates will offer a helping hand if I ask them.;

Student A says, :I will skip class for preparation when I have my next test.;

Student B says, :I will start preparing earlier for the next test.;

According to the famous psychologist Dr. Carol Dweck who has done research on people・s reaction to failure, people who have chosen mostly Student A・s answers have a fixed mindset while those who share Student B・s views have a growth mindset. In fact, one・s mindset has a great effect on how one learns.

A mindset is actually a belief. People with a fixed mindset believe that if you are smart, you don・t make mistakes. So if anyone makes mistakes, he or she is not smart. Thus, they

  • are afraid of making mistakes;
  • are very negative about failure;
  • are non-learners and do not achieve much in life.
  • like easy tasks and avoid situations when they would make mistakes;
  • not want challenges;
  • need continuous success to feel good and
  • give up easily.
  • On the other hand, people with a growth mindset believe that all people make mistakes. Thus, they

  • are not afraid of making mistakes;
  • are effective learners and achievers;
  • are persistent;
  • do feel bad but they rebound quickly;
  • keep on trying;
  • like to take up challenges or difficult tasks to stretch their potential;
  • take failure as a chance to learn and
  • think that they can become smarter by correcting their mistakes.
  • If you have a fixed mindset like that of Student A, then there is a piece of good news for you V and that is, you can change your mindset! It・s never too late to work hard and change the way you think about yourself.

    At Holy Family・s, we believe that every student has the ability to work hard to realize her own potential. No two learners are the same and everyone is unique in their learning. With a positive mindset, every one of you can learn well and achieve flying colors. Our Foundress says, :Let us pray that the Lord may give us the strength to do His will in every situation.; We know that our Foundress gave up all luxuries in life just to lead a life of poverty in order to help the abandoned ones. No matter what challenges or obstacles came in her way, she developed her positive mindset and had faith in God who made it possible for her to achieve her goals. According to the Romans, chapter 12, verse 2, it reads: :Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God・s will is V his good, pleasing and perfect will.; To fulfil God・s will, we humbly ask Him to change our mindset so that we become positive in both words and deeds.

    To renew your mindset and help you work towards this direction, we have thereby set this year・s theme as: Cultivating a positive mindset! I call upon all of you to use it to guide you in your work so that you can achieve your goals! May our dear Lord multiply His grace and peace unto you as well as guard your heart and mind throughout this school year. Thank you and may God bless you all.

     

    2019 - 2020 Principal's Message
    2018 - 2019 Principal's Message
    2017 - 2018 Principal's Message