To return, close this window by clicking X

The pupils were all wonderful by Sister Bernadette

In 1968 when I joined the staff, St Michael's College was new with the latest facilities and Kilwinning was the new location. About forty years had passed since the foundation in Irvine and now, forty years down the line, another move is imminent. It is time to reflect on the past. As I was speaking to some former pupils about writing this article, one of them said, and I quote, “just say we were all wonderful”. We laughed. Of course it was true. Angelic? No! Wonderful? Yes! As the psalmist put it: “Ah, what is man that you should spare a thought for him? / The son of man that you should care for him? / Yet you have made him little less than a god, / You have crowned him with glory and splendour.” (Psalm 8: 4-6)

The staff, both lay and religious, was dedicated to Pastoral Care and the full development of each young person. It wasn't always easy, especially when the school popul-ation grew too rapidly with the growth of the New Town. The school motto “aeterna non caduca” pointed the school community to the highest values in life. Then there were the many good causes and outreaches generously supported.

In Sports, Gymnastics, Art, Drama and Music, individuals showed their talents and knew they were part of the school community. The Debating Society produced many effective speakers. I remember too the fun we shared on outings and trips abroad. Other highlights were the Christmas parties and class dances. High academic standards enabled the students to further their studies and distinguish themselves in their chosen profession or career. It is always a pleasure to meet former pupils and hear how they are doing.

I don't forget the families and the parishes who supported the ideals and academic aims of the school and claimed it as their own. Parents made great efforts to send their children to the Catholic school even though it meant travelling from outlying towns.

On the personal level, I was welcomed in St Michael's and supported by colleagues over the years in both good and difficult times. In the modern languages department I experienced a sharing of ideas, expertise and materials. All that and friendship too! St Michael's was a good place to be in, for pupils and teachers alike. It was a place in which one could be oneself. I made lasting friends whom I cherish. I pay tribute to the numerous pupils, teachers and wider staff with whom I had the privilege to work. Some have gone to their reward in God himself and are not forgotten.

May St Michael continue to watch over and protect the new St Matthew's as it doubles in size and number and strives to become a new community. To the staff and pupils who are moving I wish you a smooth amalgamation. To former pupils and staff, wherever you are, I wish you every happiness and success in life.

Bernadette Doyle (formerly Sister Bernadette) 1968-1994

To return, close this window by clicking X