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Monday, 12 September 2016 14:36

Toowoomba Ursulines hand over reins at St Ursula's

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ursulines toowoomba150The Ursuline Sisters have transferred ownership and governance of St Ursula’s College to Toowoomba diocese, ending an era of 85 years.

The Toowoomba college, founded by the Ursulines in 1931, has a tradition of educating young women from Queensland and northern NSW.

The sisters’ Australian provincial Sr Ruth Durick, in announcing the change, said the transfer was the latest step to ensure a sustainable future for the college.

In 2006, the college was incorporated and became a company under the Commonwealth Corporations Act in order to engage the experience and expertise of many lay people who have worked in partnership since then with the Ursuline Sisters for the good governance of the college.

“It is no longer possible for the Ursulines to maintain our role of responsibility as members (owners) of the Company of St Ursula’s College,” Sr Durick said.

“We wish to ensure a sustainable future for the college and so we are transferring the membership of the company to the Diocese of Toowoomba.”

Under this transfer, St Ursula’s College will continue to be a stand-alone Catholic college in the Ursuline tradition.

The current contracts for all employees will continue, as those contracts remain with the Company of St Ursula’s College.

Ann Marie Pawsey will continue as principal and the board of directors will remain responsible for the good governance of the college.

A major difference is that the board will now report to and be responsible to the Bishop of Toowoomba rather than the Ursuline provincial.

There will be little or no change in the daily life of the college.

Sr Durick expressed confidence the college would continue to offer a rich Catholic education experience for the young women of south-east Queensland and beyond, that the spirit of Serviam (I will serve) would remain alive and active in the community, and that a wondrous future would unfold.

(Photo: Ursuline Sister Ruth Durick presents Bishop Robert McGuckin with an icon of the Ursuline Sisters’ founder St Angela Merici as a gift on the transfer of ownership and governance of Sr Ursula’s College to Toowoomba diocese.)

This article was first published on 31 August 2016 in The Catholic Leader, a publication of the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.