The Southern Cross : March 2010
The Southern Cross March 2010 Page 9 www.adelaide.catholic.org.au news By Rebecca DiGirolamo Ferdinand Ncahonziye arrived in Australia from war-torn Burundi without a scrap of English or a dollar in his pocket. Less than three years later, Ferdinand (pictured right) is a recipient of the 2010 John Brewer Memorial scholarship -- an academic scholarship initiated 14 years ago by the Knights of the Southern Cross in South Australia. The 18-year-old refugee is studying at Sacred Hear t College (SHC) in a bid to gain a degree in International Studies. He now speaks four languages, including French and English. He is an altar ser ver seven times a week at St Francis Xavier's Cathedral, in Adelaide, the Holy Spirit Church, at Seacombe Gardens, and at school. "He's extraordinar y, that's for sure," says SHC principal Paul Hine. "He will get there." And "there" for Ferdinand means eventually returning to Burundi, the third poorest countr y in the world, to visit his family and to help the thousands of children, and adults, losing their childhood education in refugee camps across Africa. "Ferdi" was separated from his mother and two brothers in a refugee camp in Tanzania, where he lived with his older brother from the age of three. His father and three sisters were killed in the civil war before he was born. Shor tly after arriving in Australia in 2007, Ferdinand discovered his mother and two remaining brothers had found their way back home. He has not yet spoken with them. "I don't have my family here with me, butIhaveachancetogotoagood school and get a good education and maybe help my family in the future," he says. "This is an oppor tunity I can see in front of me. I am pretty lucky to have it." "He is a ver y modest young man," says Knights of the Southern Cross state executive officer Tony Sexton. "I'm sure he is going to go places," he says. "He will make the most of his education in Australia and put that to good use to help his people." Ferdinand's school and boarding fees are subsidised by SHC which covers tuition for several refugee students. "Those who have worked with refugees would be acutely aware of the strength, resilience, and determination of many who have suf fered great personal hardship but have the courage to move ahead with life and achieve great things," said Dr Hine. Term Investment Less than $1,000 0.10% $1,000 - $1,999 0.50% $2,000 - $4,999 2.00% $5,000 - $19,999 3.25% $20,000 + 4.00% Catholic Education Fee Savings Account 4.25% Personal Account Less than $1,000 0.25% $1,000 - $1,999 0.50% $2,000 - $4,999 1.50% $5,000 - $19,999 3.00% $20,000 + 3.50% Prepaid Funeral Plan Contact your funeral director Read more about CDF at www.cdfadl.com.au or phone 08 8210 8215 How can my savings make a difference? Assisting parishes Charitable causes Building classrooms Quality education Helping those in need Religious and pastoral initiatives 4.25%P.A. CATHOLIC EDUCATION FEE SAVINGS ACCOUNT *TERMS AND CONDITIONS APPLY Boy from Barundi beats odds Newton celebration St Francis Assisi Catholic Community at Newton will celebrate the 25th anniversar y of its "new" church on March 14. The Vicar-General Monsignor David Cappo and parish priest Fr John Cooper OFM will celebrate the bi-lingual Mass at 10am. The parish community and the Order of Capuchin Friars Minor have organised the Mass which will be followed by enter tainment. The original church was opened in October 1953 at the height of post war migration and the first Solemn Mass was attended by senior Italian diplomatic staf f as well as local political leaders. By the late 1970s it was clear the existing church was not adequate. Mass attendance had grown considerably and the building was unsuitable for many celebrations. Lack of funds stalled plans for either an extension of the old church or a new building but in the early 80s the parish managed to raise the $100,000 required to kickstar t the project. The official dedication ceremony was held on March 10, 1985.