BCE Prayer Coordinator wins Spirit of Catholic Education Award 2023


​(Mary) Dolores Maitland wins Spirit of Catholic Education Award 2023. 

After dedicating 47 years of her life to Catholic education, Brisbane Catholic Education’s Mary Dolores Maitland has been named the winner of the Archdiocese of Brisbane’s prestigious Spirit of Catholic Education Award. 

The Marymount College Burleigh Waters Prayer Coordinator, who also served as the schools Assistant Principal Religious Education for 12 years prior, is known among her colleagues and school community as Dolores and described as a “a true beacon of hope."

Marymount College Principal Martina Millard, who nominated Dolores for the award, praised her team member’s “unwavering fidelity to her faith and long-standing commitment to Catholic education.” 

She also said that in times of great stress, Dolores was a calming presence.  

“When someone felt under pressure, Dolores would simply say ‘we need a cup of tea’,” Martina said. 

“The Mercy trait of offering comfort through a warm cup of tea became a shared experience between us, and we were able to find much common ground, providing solace and respite during challenging times.”  

Martina said it was Dolores’ Mercy education at Thornhill College Girls Grammar School in Derry Northern Ireland that she believes has instilled in her a “deep sense of compassion, empathy, and a commitment to serving others.” 

“Dolores’ unwavering dedication and resilience in the face of adversity continues to inspire countless educators and students, making her a true beacon of hope within the Catholic education community,” she said. 

“Dolores shared a story with me about a tragic car accident that impacted a Marist retreat team she was with more than 20 years ago, that really propelled me to nominate her. 

“Using her deep faith to guide her actions, Dolores showed profound strength and fidelity as she committed herself to training others and carrying on their legacy.”  

BCE’s Head of Catholic Identity Sharon O’Keeffe said Dolores goes above and beyond to inspire others to seek out the deeper meaning of life. 

“As a passionate educator she has been a role model and mentor to numerous people across the Archdiocese of Brisbane and beyond, including myself,” she said.  

In 2023, more than 240 nominations for the Spirit of Catholic Education Awards were received from Catholic school communities across the state, highlighting the important work being undertaken by staff, parents, carers, and volunteers who support Catholic school students.  

Dolores will be awarded the Spirit of Catholic Education Award on Tuesday 25 July at an awards ceremony in Townsville at the launch of Catholic Education Week (23 - 29 July). 

About the Spirit of Catholic Education Award: 

The Spirit of Catholic Education Award celebrates the outstanding contributions of passionate educators within Catholic Education in Queensland. Individuals or teams including staff members, parents/carers, or volunteers are nominated for making an outstanding contribution to the life of their school community in the following areas: 

• Showing outstanding integrity in leading a school community or program 
• Implementing change that improves teaching and learning and supports greater equity in education 
• Building Catholic education identity and ethos to support flourishing communities 
• Demonstrating outstanding service to others in the education community and beyond 
• Demonstrating excellence as a team that supports and builds school communities. 
To read more about Dolores’ win click here. 

Dolores .JPGMarymount College Principal Martina Millard, with Prayer Co-Ordinator Dolores Maitland, and College Captains Porsha Cush and Ryder Damro.

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