The Chaplin Mary Elaine Carty together with Friar Jim and Father Sebastian, provide pastoral Services at RND. They offer a professional service of pastoral support and care for the school community and a visible sign of the school’s commitment to the spiritual and religious needs of students and staff. They operate under a mandate from the local ordinary, or Archbishop. The ministry provided by Pastoral Services centers upon the expression of compassion and concern for those most in need as modeled by Jesus Christ.
Pastoral Services is an integral part of school life at RND. The coordinator attends staff meetings and other meetings. The CPS and priest-chaplain are also present on a number of other school committees, such as the Bereavement Response Team and School Council. We endeavor to collaborate with the school community members to provide an effective Christian service to Catholic Secondary School students and staff in the Kingston area. This includes nurturing a strong connection with the feeder parishes of our school and their pastors.
Pastoral Care: Ministering to students and staff who may be experiencing personal crisis, hospitalization, or bereavement. This ministry takes the form of hospital and funeral home visitation, confidential counseling and spontaneous pastoral encounters within the school (i.e. cafeteria, sports field, hallways, etc.). We work closely with other staff to identify students in need and, when necessary, make referrals to other support services. We seek to be present wherever and whenever there is a need for Christian support and concern and model this expression of pastoral care for other staff and students.
Liturgical Coordination: They animate morning prayer for the school, organize monthly school liturgies, train students and staff for various liturgical ministries, arrange class masses, plan penitential services for different grade levels, and prepare seasonal prayer services. They also are responsible for maintenance of the chapel and co-ordination of masses during the week.
Spiritual Development: Pastoral Services organize classroom visits, offer retreats for staff and students, and co-ordinate special events and speakers throughout the year which nurture the spiritual life of the school community. Over the years we have focused on ideas such as chastity, pro-life, social justice and third world concerns. The priest-chaplain provides opportunities for celebration of the sacrament of reconciliation and, together with the coordinator, offers spiritual counseling to students and staff. We also foster an ecumenical ministry for students and staff who are members of other denominations and faith groups. Pastoral Services also supervise the School Choir.
Community Outreach: The coordinator arranges many outreach programs including: student volunteers to food banks and soup kitchens, the Lenten 25-hour ThinkFast, the annual FoodBlitz collection and service learning trips to Toronto and abroad. As well as the RHUM committee.