The House System

We have seven houses, named after female saints, which provide different role models, a vertical opportunity for interaction and role modelling across the school, smaller groups for charity events and a sense of light competition through the year. The seven tutor groups in each year are named after the house saints. In year groups where there are eight tutor groups, the members of that tutor group are mixed around the houses and the tutor group’s patron is St Mary.

St Alphonsa

Feast Day: 28 July |
House Value: Friendship |

1910-1946, St Alphonsa was the first Indian saint. She became a nun but had to go through lots of physical illness in her short life. She was friends with a priest who later became Bishop of Kerala who focused on poor people from all religious backgrounds. She constantly endured her sufferings with trust in God.

St Bernadette

Feast Day: 16 April |
House Value: Inspiration |

1844-1879, St Bernadette was the daughter of a miller in Lourdes, France, Bernadette had a series of 18 visions of Mary, who showed her where to find a spring of water which is now the famous place of pilgrimage at Lourdes. Also she was a wonderful embroiderer and a nurse, and was known for her humility and spirit of sacrifice.

St Catherine

Feast Day: 29 April |
House Value: Excellence |

1347-1380, St Catherine was a philosopher and theologian. Catherine of Siena’s legacy makes her one of the few female ‘Doctors of the Church’. She had a vision as a child of Jesus and promised to become a nun. She founded a monastery and led a life of fasting and prayer. A mystical writer, she is an example of true union with God.

St Edith

Feast Day: 9 August |
House Value: Courage |

1891-1942, St Edith was ethnically Jewish, but converted to Catholicism. Edith Stein taught in a Catholic school for some time until the Nazi government’s requirements for the race of teachers meant she had to stop teaching. She then became a nun, was sent to the Netherlands for her safety and was arrested and then killed in the gas chambers at Auschwitz. She was made a saint not just for being a martyr, but also for the life she led while facing terrible conditions.

St Hildegard

Feast Day: 17 September |
House Value: Determination |

1098-1179, Hildegard of Bingen was an abbess, writer, composer, philosopher and mystic. We still have 69 of her musical compositions and her writings ranged from religious to scientific and medical. She spoke up for women in a time when women did not have much of a voice in the Church.

St Josephine

Feast Day: 8 February |
House Value: Equality |

1869-1947, St Josephine was born in the Sudan and sold as a slave. Josephine Bakhita was eventually bought by an Italian who treated her well and eventually went with him and his family to Italy where she became a Christian and then a nun. Through her life she showed that despite suffering it is possible to grow as a person and be an example to others.

St Thérèse

Feast Day: 1 October |
House Value: Respect |

1873-1897, St Thérèse was a French nun, also known as ‘The Little Flower’ known for her life of simplicity, humility and childlike trust in God. Thérèse of Lisieux promoted what is known as her ‘Little Way’ – a way of being simple in faith, but her writings as a whole mean that she is one of the ‘Doctors of the Church’. Anyone can achieve holiness by doing even the smallest things well for God.

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