Our Story

Philosophy of Our School
about our school

Our Catholic Christian Communities aim to develop in all their members, a healthy self-love, love of neighbour, and love of God. To achieve this Christian dynamic, the individuality of each person must be respected by allowing for the development of the whole person to his/her fullest potential, spiritually, physically, emotionally, intellectually, socially, and aesthetically.

Our school is a witness to faith where people find in a Catholic school, an atmosphere of sincere respect and cordiality; it should be a place where authentic human relationships can be formed among all its members. Our Catholic Secondary Schools strive toward this goal.

The philosophy of St. Mary Catholic Secondary School is that all students should have the opportunity to develop as completely as possible in the direction of their individual talents and needs. All courses are open to both male and female students, and every effort is made to create a learning environment that is free from gender-role stereotyping.

We strive to encourage sharing and caring in an atmosphere of co-operation while setting high expectations for our students to take their place as leaders in the community.


School History

The existence and growth of St. Mary Catholic Secondary School over the years is a tribute to the vision, sacrifices and commitment of the Catholic people of Hamilton-Wentworth. Today St. Mary Catholic Secondary School proudly stands as a community wherein all who come can Grow in Grace and Wisdom.

St. Mary Catholic Secondary School came into being in 1970, upon the closure of Loretto Academy on King Street West. St. Mary Catholic Secondary School was established in the former elementary school of Christ the King.

Under Father Fergus Duffy, the first Principal, the school community quickly outgrew its temporary home, and in 1980 moved to the site of the former Hamilton Teacher's College, near the McMaster University Campus. The newer facility was blessed by Bishop Paul Reding and housed 500 students and 25 staff. The increasing demands for Catholic Education resulted in the school population reaching over 1000 students and the growth of a portable classroom city.

Because of the overcrowding, and with increased funding from the province, the Separate School Board was able to make plans for a new school in 1992.

The new site was blessed by Bishop Anthony Tonnos and the new St. Mary Catholic Secondary School became a reality. After a journey of over three decades, St. Mary Catholic Secondary School is now located in a magnificent building, on a beautifully landscaped lot, at the corner of Whitney Avenue and Rifle Range Road in West Hamilton.

Mary, our Mother: Help us to Grow in Wisdom and Grace.

From the earliest days of the Church, Mary has been honoured as the greatest of all saints. She is both the patron saint of our school and the diocese of Hamilton.

Mary was perhaps 14 years old when the angel Gabriel appeared to her. She had no idea what God was asking of her. All she knew was that God was asking something special.

Although she was greatly troubled, Mary may have felt like responding as we do in class when our teacher calls upon us for an answer: Oh, please don't call on me! I'm not prepared.

God often calls people to take on awesome responsibilities, perform tasks they hadn't anticipated and wouldn't have chosen to do in a million years! Mary exemplifies how God can take the least prepared and make them strong through grace.

Jesus and Mary cannot and must not be separated. Together, they were from all eternity in God's plan for the redemption of humanity. The infant Jesus without Mary is a king without a throne, and Mary without the child is a queen without a crown. The Holy Spirit fashions from her a body for the saviour of the world, and that body prefigures the Mystical Body which is the Church.

As a teenager and young mother, Mary experienced many of the same struggles and challenges we face everyday. She had hopes and fears, joys and sorrows for herself and her family. Faithfully, Mary abandoned herself to God in prayer. She entrusted her own needs and those of her loved ones to her heavenly Father: Although her language was different, Mary's message was similar to our deepest yearnings: Lord, I have a special need and I turn this over to You, not my will, but Your will be done. St. Mary, pray for us.


Our Mission

The mission of Catholic Education in Hamilton-Wentworth, in union with our Bishop, is to enable all learners to realize the fullness of humanity of which our Lord Jesus Christ is the model.

The Catholic Community of Hamilton-Wentworth believes the learner will realize this fullness of humanity

if the learning process

- begins at home and is part of family life
- is nurtured within the Parish
- is anchored in the Catholic Faith
- takes place within the context of worship, sacraments, and the life of the Church
- is enhanced by the school community
- is embraced by the learner as a personal responsibility for life

if learning takes place in an appropriate and challenging environment in which members of the school community exemplify the teachings of Jesus Christ which reflects Gospel values and responsible use of human, financial and natural resources which promotes academic excellence and clear indicators of achievement.


Our Vision
board logo 2

Learners from Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic Schools will demonstrate

- knowledge and practice of their Catholic faith model
- the capability of nurturing a strong family unit
- esteem, respect and responsibility for self and others
- academic competence
- the ability to listen accurately and express knowledge clearly
- independence, critical thinking and effective problem solving
- proficiency with technology in order to adapt to a changing world
- the values, attitudes and skills for effective partnerships
- the ability to transform our society

To enable learners to achieve this vision, the faith community of the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board will reflect

- the centrality of Jesus Christ in our lives
- the teachings of the Catholic Church
- exemplary role models
- social justice, respect and fairness for all
- a dedicated staff
- a curriculum that is dynamic, practical and relevant
- high standards
- an environment conducive to learning
- effective partnerships
- accountability at all levels


Mary the Blessed Virgin
Mary, mother of God

The Mother, of God, Mother of Jesus, wife of St. Joseph, and the greatest of all Christian saints. The Virgin Mother “was, after her Son, exalted by divine grace above all angels and men”. Mary is venerated with a special cult, called by St. Thomas Aquinas, hyperdulia, as the highest of God’s creatures. The principal events of her life are celebrated as liturgical feasts of the universal Church. Mary’s life and role in the history of salvation is prefigured in the Old Testament, while the events of her life are recorded in the New Testament. Traditionally, she was declared the daughter of Sts. Joachim and Anne. Born in Jerusalem, Mary was presented in the Temple and took a vow of virginity. Living in Nazareth, Mary was visited by the archangel Gabriel, who announced to her that she would become the Mother of Jesus, by the Holy Spirit. She became betrothed to St. Joseph and went to visit her cousin, Elizabeth, who was bearing St. John the Baptist.

Acknowledged by Elizabeth as the Mother of God, Mary intoned the Magnificat. When Emperor Augustus declared a census throughout the vast Roman Empire, Mary and St. Joseph went to Bethlehem, his city of lineage, as he belonged to the House of David. There Mary gave birth to Jesus and was visited by the Three Kings. Mary and Joseph presented Jesus in the Temple, where St. Simeon rejoiced and Mary received word of sorrows to come later. Warned to flee, St. Joseph and Mary went to Egypt to escape the wrath of King Herod. They remained in Egypt until King Herod died and then returned to Nazareth. Nothing is known of Mary’s life during the next years except for a visit to the Temple of Jerusalem, at which time Mary and Joseph sought the young Jesus, who was in the Temple with the learned elders. The first recorded miracle of Jesus was performed at a wedding in Cana, and Mary was instrumental in calling Christ’s attention to the need. Mary was present at the Crucifixion in Jerusalem, and there she was given into John’s care. She was also with the disciples in the days before the Pentecost, and it is believed that she was present at the resurrection and Ascension. No scriptural reference concerns Mary’s last years on earth. According to tradition, she went to Ephesus, where she experienced her “dormition.” Another tradition states that she remained in Jerusalem.

The belief that Mary’s body was assumed into heaven is one of the oldest traditions of the Catholic Church. Pope Pius XII declared this belief Catholic dogma in 1950. The feast of the Assumption is celebrated on August 15. The dogma of the Immaculate Conception - that Mary, as the Mother of the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, was free of original sin at the moment of her conception was proclaimed by Pope Pius IX in 1854 . The feast of the Immaculate Conception is celebrated on December 8. The birthday of Mary is an old feast in the Church, celebrated on September 8 since the seventh century. Other feasts that commemorate events in the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary are listed in the Appendices. Pope Pius XII dedicated the entire human race to Mary in 1944. The Church has long taught that Mary is truly the Mother of God . St. Paul observed that “God sent His Son, born of a woman," expressing the union of the human and the divine in Christ. As Christ possesses two natures, human and divine, Mary was the Mother of God in his human nature.

This special role of Mary in salvation history is clearly depicted in the Gospel in which she is seen constantly at her son’s side during his soteriological mission. Because of this role exemplified by her acceptance of Christ into her womb, her offering of him to God at the Temple, her urging him to perform his first miracle, and her standing at the foot of the Cross at Calvary Mary was joined fully in the sacrifice by Christ of himself. Pope Benedict XV wrote in 1918: “To such an extent did Mary suffer and almost die with her suffering and dying Son; to such extent did she surrender her maternal rights over her Son for man’s salvation, and immolated him - insofar as she could in order to appease the justice of God, that we might rightly say she redeemed the human race together with Christ” . Mary is entitled to the title of Queen because, as Pope Pius XII expressed it in a 1946 radio speech, “Jesus is King throughout all eternity by nature and by right of conquest: through him, with him, and subordinate to him, Mary is Queen by grace, by divine relationship, by right of conquest, and by singular election.”

Mary possesses a unique relationship with all three Persons of the Trinity, thereby giving her a claim to the title of Queenship. She was chosen by God the Father to be the Mother of his Son; God the Holy Spirit chose her to be his virginal spouse for the Incarnation of the Son; and God the Son chose her to be his mother, the means of incarnating into the world for the purposes of the redemption of humanity. This Queen is also our Mother. While she is not our Mother in the physical sense, she is called a spiritual mother, for she conceives, gives birth, and nurtures the spiritual lives of grace for each person. As Mediatrix of All Graces, she is ever present at the side of each person, giving nourishment and hope, from the moment of spiritual birth at Baptism to the moment of death. The confidence that each person should have in Mary was expressed by Pope Pius IX in the encyclical Ubipriinum : “The foundation of all our confidence. . . is found in the Blessed Virgin Mary. For God has committed to Mary the treasury of all good things, in order that everyone may know that through her are obtained every hope, every grace, and all salvation. For this is his will, that we obtain everything through Mary.”


Mary full


St. Mary Digital Prayer Bookmarkers 2023athlete's prayer

Click here to download St. Mary Digital Prayer Bookmarkers 2023 https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1AV ...























Bookmarkers and Prayersstma chapel

Please see attached pdf files for bookmarkers and prayers.

Anne-Marie Prayer Bookmark.pdf

Dillan Prayer Bookmark.pdf

Felicia Prayer Bookmark.pdf


School Prayersstma chapel

School Prayers

Please see the pdf files for school prayers.

Marian prayer by Anne Marie.pdf

School prayer by Dillan.pdf

School prayer submission by Felicia.pdf


School Prayer by Felicia Kondohstma chapel

Dear Almighty Father,
We thank you for this new school year. We ask that you guide us in our educational journey and bless
our St. Mary community.
Give us the strength to work hard, study and accomplish the new goals we have set for ourselves this
school year. Enable us to work and learn to our full potential for your glory. We ask you to guide us on
the right path for a bright and successful future and give thanks that you are with us every step of the
Give us the strength to learn from our mistakes and bless those who help us succeed. We thank you
for the love and support you have given us in our journey of life. Let us come together as a school
community and work hard to achieve our goals. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ, our



Marian Prayer by Maurion Heidistma chapel

Mary, we been through a lot, the violent threats of humans, viruses, and anything that may cause us
harm on our journey forward. We ask that you bless all students so they may be guided by the light of
God as we walk the path we create. Mary, we pray for your guidance as we continue to share the
warmth of our school. We ask you to help us see light in every student for all of us are gentle hearted.
Please look past our mistakes and use your healing touch to allow us to forget any worries and see
that we have family both inside and outside school. Thank you, Mary.



Healing Prayer by Gerard Thugugala
stma chapel

Heavenly Father, we pray to you during these uncertain times of social distancing and self-isolation.
Just like your son, Jesus who healed those who were sick, we pray for the healing of all those who
suffer from this deadly disease. We ask for your continued protection especially for our elders and
those who are most vulnerable. We pray that you grant us the strength and patience to help us
continue with our lives. We ask that you send down the Holy Spirit to guide front line workers and those
working to find a cure. We believe that with you everything is possible and through your healing and
power, the virus will be swiftly eradicated. We pray in your name.