Dean of Identity | Mr Charles Brauer

Good News of Terrace – Tom, Noah, Kevin and Jordan of Year 9 joining the celebration of Catholic Missions at the Cathedral of St Stephen.

How am I connected to the Edmund Rice story?

It felt like a Tuesday night in the 1970s while welcoming old friends to the upper verandah of the Treacy Centre. It wasn’t the creaking of the decking boards or the backdrop of the stone walls. It was the presence of Christian Brothers sharing a meal, sharing stories and sharing a laugh. This wonderful insight into the Christian Brother’s community of Gregory Terrace was a gift to the teachers, Old Boys and friends of the Queensland Edmund Rice Network that gathered on Tuesday night to share a conversation regarding hopes and dreams for the charism (spiritual ethos) of Edmund Rice in Australia for the next 150 years.

Ambrose Treacy, Furcy Bodkin, Joseph Nolan and Barnabas Lynch stepped off the ‘Donald Mackay’ and onto the docks of Port Philip Bay, Melbourne on 19 November 1868 . Today, 54 Edmund Rice ministries, schools and educational communities flourish with educating the hearts and minds of young people and being a compassionate and liberating presence for the most vulnerable of our society. Celebrating this 150 year milestone comes with a challenge. The challenge to forge a new direction for the Edmund Rice charism to be a relevant, influential and authentic expression of the Gospel as Edmund Rice so truly modelled over 200 years ago.

Tuesday’s gathering of Brothers, staff, volunteers and friends of our local Edmund Rice Network focused on two intentional question that I now pose to you:

How am I connected to the Edmund Rice story?
What is my dream for the Edmund Rice story in Queensland?

If your response is anything like those gathered on Tuesday, your connection is likely to have begun with a transformational experience centred on a personal interaction or relationship with someone already connected to the Edmund Rice story. For me, it was my teachers, the Christian Brothers and lay staff, of the Christian Brothers' school attended in secondary school. Your dream may also reflect some of the dreams that were shared in Circles of Conversation – that the charism of Edmund Rice inspires others to enact the Gospel of Jesus in responding the modern needs and contexts of today’s society.

Not only are we in a wonderful position to be stewards of the Edmund Rice charism and story, we have a wonderful opportunity to live out the dream of a new future here in our country and within our Terrace Family. Wherever the dream leads, Tuesday night affirmed that there will continue to be meals, stories and laughs shared on the verandah of the Treacy Centre for a long time to come.