In its essence, the Coptic Orthodox Church centres around worship, religious education, evangelism, fellowship and service.
Accordingly, these five essential factors of our faith are intertwined throughout our diverse learning experiences at St Mary’s Coptic Orthodox College.
At the head of all is worship, the deeply-rooted Oriental tradition, which students are immersed in each day. From the regular liturgies celebrated at our College, to the commencement of daily prayers in Chapel, we certainly work hard to endorse this aspect of our faith. Our beautiful Church at the college, St Mary’s & St Philopateer Church is open to all students across the day to promote private prayer and silent time surrounded by the beautiful iconography outside the sanctuary. From this central dogma comes the other components of the wheel, living in a harmonious co-existence.
Students of all year levels are provided each day their share of spiritual nourishment during our daily sermons, wherein scripture is read, our traditions are unpacked, and various contemporary issues are reflected back onto our rich and dogmatic understanding of Christ. This start of their day is the perfect means of empowering our students to tackle everyday life with Christian Orthodox mindsets. Our campus also fosters bi-weekly and annual fasts in accordance with the Coptic Orthodox Church Calendar through the teachings and environment. Even our Canteen offers various vegan options to promote the concepts given to us by the early church fathers.
Fellowship and Evangelism
Yet, it does not stop there. Here at our College, every student, of every year level, is provided with weekly religion classes in which these issues can be discussed in more intimate groups. We recognise the need to spread this message of salvation and it all starts here with our students.
Finally, the opportunities to put this all into practice are ample at our College, with opportunities for all to participate in preparation for our blessed feasts of the Church. Whether through planning, serving in the liturgical practices or organising the events, each member of the student body is valuable in the celebration of our rich feasts.
St Mary’s Coptic Orthodox College centralises Oriental Orthodox faith in a culturally appropriate way so that our students can take their faith to a new level and serve God each day.
An integral part of our College campus is St Mary’s & St Philopateer Church. Surrounded by the beautiful iconography and designs, the building serves as a perfect venue for Coptic Orthodox worship. Each year, countless liturgies are celebrated here, wherein our students are given the opportunity to partake of the divine Eucharist. We recognise that our students do not just require quality education, therefore we strive to attend to their spiritual needs as well. St Mary’s & St Philopateer Church is available to our students any time of the day and during lunchtimes and recesses. This is an invaluable tool to promote the personal stillness that we are called to discover. Within the walls of St Mary’s & St Philopateer Church, students, who would like to spend some time alone or are in need of private prayers can take advantage of this sacred building.
Feasts and Fasts
The Coptic calendar is a rich tradition that has been passed down across the centuries of our church. Accordingly, it guides our College celebrations and allows the students to experience an invaluable co-existence of education and their heritage. This is part of the holistic experience that we aim to provide our members of St Mary’s Coptic Orthodox College. It is always uplifting to see the students participate in many of the Church celebrations, whether through venerations in morning Assembly or Chapel or scheduled glorifications in the St Mary’s & St Philopateer Church. For instance, St Mary’s feast entails bi-weekly prayers in the Church with our students at lunchtime, allowing us to all celebrate the joyous occasion as one through hymnology in a mix of English, Arabic and Coptic languages. Furthermore, our students look forward to our annual contest ‘St Mary’s Got Talent’ during this feast, where they can showcase their God-given talents to the entire College. This exemplar demonstrates how much we yearn to provide a unique and God-centred schooling experience for all. Furthermore, we, as a Coptic Orthodox College, recognise the importance of the fasts for each feast and on Wednesdays and Fridays. The College Canteen caters for these events with a variety of vegan options. Furthermore, our sermons aim to reflect the Coptic year, providing numerous saint stories relevant to the time period, whilst also generating discussion on fasting rites.
Choir and Hymnology
It is no secret that the Coptic Orthodox Church is deeply rooted with rich musical tradition and culture that stem back from centuries ago. Our students love to express themselves musically and the sheer amount of hymnology available to them is truly invaluable. SMCOC’s Choir is trained to partake of the many written hymns and represent our College with pride. During numerous visits by our blessed Bishops, our College choir have been an integral part of our grand entrance, wherein his grace is met with zealous students singing hymns prior to the liturgy. The musical talents of our members of St Mary’s Coptic Orthodox College perfectly complement our tradition and heritage, that is saturated with unique and sacred hymnology. Thus, we aim to continue promoting the Glorification of our God through the many gifts of our student body.
Starting the day with prayer is an essential component of the Christian life. In his psalms, King David writes “O Lord, in the morning you hear my voice; in the morning I prepare a sacrifice for you and watch.” We, at St Mary’s Coptic Orthodox College, wish to engrain this practice within our students so that we can place God at the forefront of all our works.
The blessings of beginning with thanksgiving, psalms and select hymns are abundant for our students at the College. We recognise the need for worship as the foundation of our entire College and manifest this through each morning assembly.
In fact, our own students often lead these prayers and hymns. Chapel is a vital aspect as it also provides a balance for the many classes that students attend each day, creating ample opportunity for quality time with God.
St Marys Coptic Orthodox College offers a complete educational experience – from Foundation to Year 12.
The College fosters a true community spirit.
We maintain high academic standards, smaller class sizes and a caring, inclusive and supportive community.
Our teachers are deeply committed to seeing each student realise their God-given potential
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