MACS principals experience Indigenous culture in the Tiwi Islands

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10 August 2023

A group of Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools (MACS) east-central region principals recently visited Darwin and the Tiwi Islands to better understand Indigenous culture and the work of the Church in a remote context.

With the focus of their professional learning for 2023 on developing Indigenous cultural competency and principal wellbeing, the group was based in Darwin for five days to explore the theme ‘The people, the history and us’, which included a visit to Bathurst Island.

Principals group photo

While on Bathurst Island, local principals Rhett Bowden (Xavier Catholic College) and Kellie McGinlay (Murrupurtiyanuwu Catholic Primary School), along with Sisters Amelia Fatima and Anne Gardiner, shared their experiences, underlining the important role of the Catholic schools and St Therese’s Church in the local community.

Inspired by their work, the Melbourne principals have shared their experiences within their own communities and are undertaking community action to raise funds for the restoration of St Therese’s Church on Bathurst Island through a ‘Walk for Tiwi’ later this year.

The principals are also completing the Indigenous Cultural Competency Program through Melbourne Museum. The experience in Darwin and the Tiwi Islands has deepened their knowledge while reconnecting with nature.

The participating principals were:

Read more about the incredible contribution of Sister Anne Gardiner to the Bathurst Island community in A life’s mission.