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Backing the Underdog

Year 10 students joined Holy Family Primary School for their Ash Wednesday liturgy.

Do you want to know an easy way to make money? Back an underdog!
2016 saw an unprecedented amount of upset, come from behind, Cinderella stories of overcoming adversity and proving experts and big hitters wrong. The achievements of lowly Leicester City – a 5000-1 chance prior to the season commencing – was one that will be shared for generations to come.

A team that no-one gave a passing thought to, beat the billionaires in their own backyards. The strength of comradery and self-belief was too formidable for the big bucks of London and Manchester. Likewise, the helpless Chicago Cubs snapped one of the longest losing streak in world sport, the Western Bulldogs won their first trophy since 1954 and a notorious reality TV show host trumped other politicians to become the President of the United States. Nostradamus would be turning in his grave at the surprises and unpredictable outcomes of recent times!

Have there been times in your life recently, when you achieved despite having so many doubts? Despite all these examples, history’s greatest underdog was born in Bethlehem approximately 2000 years ago. Amidst the dominance of the Roman Empire, the traditional customs of Jewish temple priests and with a band of followers comprising fisherman, carpenters and tax collectors, Jesus shaped the lives of those around him and of millions of people for years to come. Like the sporting franchises, Jesus embraced the challenges facing him, and won over the people. He did this by showing virtues we still value today; love, patience and wonderful story telling.

Year 8 Camp outdoor Ash Wednesday liturgy.


Today marks the beginning of Lent, a period which Jesus used to reflect on his own life – his successes, failures and key moments. Following 40 days in the desert, he returned to his disciples with a new found confidence that he was on the right journey and able to make a difference to the world he lived in. His time of solitude, thought and retreat empowered him to face his adversaries and inspired his ultimate sacrifice – being crucified on the cross.

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of our own opportunity to reflect on what we do well in our lives, and what more we can do for those around us. Although our busyness seems never ending at times, we can take solace in family and friends, aware that our pressures, stress and hard work will lead to positive outcomes. Just like the underdogs of the sporting arenas, some times we’ve just got to reflect on what we’re doing in the knowledge that impossible outcomes do come true.

Community Mass

We warmly invite you to our community Mass on Saturday 4 March at 5.30pm in the Chapel of St. Joseph. All family and friends are welcome. This is a wonderful way to start this year’s Lenten Journey and the boys always enjoy gathering together out of school hours to celebrate Mass. Our Chamber Choir will be singing the hymns and Fr John Gillen will be celebrating the Eucharist. Please come along for an hour and take time to reflect on life and your impossibles that could come true!

Matthew Warr, Assistant Dean of Formation