Fr Bruce Bernard Goodman S.M., M.Ed., B.A. (Hons.), L.T.C.L.
Nickname: Jagger




St. Patrick’s College,
Silverstream.
7/2/76.

Dear Mum & Dad,

Well, at last I’ve got around to writing. I suppose that you’ve heard that Fr. Head died last Tuesday at 5 minutes past 4. I had been to see him twice since I got here. The last time was on the Sunday when I said Mass for him. He was very weak, but bright. On the Monday he said his last Mass. On the Tuesday all the boys came back to school. He said to the Sister that morning that he would stop holding on now. A carload of the Fathers from here went in & said Mass for him at 3.30 p.m. He was attentive all Mass. Then just after they had all received communion he died. The funeral was on Thursday morning at St. Mary of the angels. His body was brought out to the College on the Wednesday & remained here for the night. The funeral was huge, & there were a lot of priests, most of whom concelebrated. He was buried at Karori.

The week before the boys arrived – I think it was the Tuesday or Wednesday – Fr. Head came out for his last visit (& his first since he went to hospital). We had a Mass and anointed him. Then we had lunch, he tidied his room up, then went back. He got weak very quickly after that.

So on my first day of teaching a member of the staff died! This first week has been very broken because of the funeral. Yesterday (N.Z. day) we had the swimming sports. I was one of the judges. You might remember that they have various sports Houses. I’m in Watters House. We are coming 3rd in the sports at the moment.

Classes are going well at the moment, although class preparations & homework correcting takes a long time. I have the following classes:

6th Form English (6 periods a week)
5th Form English (5 periods a week)
4th Form Christian Doctrine (4 periods a week)
4th Form Public Speaking (1 period a week)
4th Form Music Option (5 periods a week) – this will go on to School C. music next year.
Two 3rd Form Music Classes (1 period each a week)
Then one period a week each of Singing with the7th Form, two 6th Forms, one 5th Form, one 4th form, & two 3rd form classes.

So that makes 30 periods a week. There are 8 periods a day, so that leaves me with 10 free periods a week to prepare, which is very fortunate. The 6th Form English takes a lot of reading to prepare.

I haven’t got any sport to take in the summer.

Fr. Pratley – who wrote the script for the musical – is extremely pleased with the music. Fr. Aitken has started to orchestrate it for the school orchestra. It will be put on at 7.30 p.m. on the 1st, 3rd, 4th & 5th of May. So they will be starting rehearsals fairly soon.

I got the records thanks, which you sent down via Frs. Walsh & Walls.

I haven’t got a dormitory to look after; but you don’t usually get one in your 1st year.

I’ve started taking piano lessons again off a Mrs. Oliver. Mrs. Walls couldn’t take me even though she would have liked to. So she recommended Mrs. Oliver – who teaches the piano at the College. Mrs. Walls retired at the end of 1975. I will be working towards my A.T.C.L. but am not sure whether or not it can be done this year.

Well, I’d better sign off!

Love from
Bruce




Frs Rice & Head at the ordination



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