The theme of our Regional Gathering on Tuesday evening was ‘Growing the Marist Family’ and it could not have been more apt, as the venue was filled to overflowing with Canberra Marists. Our local Marist family is a beautiful mix of current parents and teachers, parishioners, university students and past teachers, students and parents. Matthew Pearce (Local Coordinator Forbes) also skyped into our meeting for our first genuine ‘regional’ gathering and we formally welcomed our newest Marist Association members: Leesa Callaughan, Melanie Kerr and Patrick Corr. The keynote address was delivered by Tony Clarke who shared the message of the 22nd General Chapter; calling Marists to become beacons of hope, with tender mercy, who creatively respond to the emerging needs and build bridges to those young people on the margins of life. This was a powerful challenge to consider how we boldly live out this message in our daily lives. Jennifer Croker spoke of her experience at the National Marist Assembly and the recommendations flowing out from the three days of conversations with 180+ Marists. Thank you to Michael Evison for leading us in prayer and to Leanne Harrison for the delicious nibbles. The family spirit is alive and well in Canberra.