Trinity Catholic College, Lismore

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1 Dawson Street
Lismore, New South Wales
Type Independent, Catholic
Motto In Word and Deed
Established 1984

1886 (St. Mary's College for Girls), 1911 (St. Joseph's High School for Boys),

1985 (Amalgamated as Trinity Catholic College, Lismore)
Founder Presentation Sisters & Marist Brothers
School district Lismore Diocese
Principal Br John Hilet FMS
Grades Year 7–12
Number of students ca. 1450
Campus Suburban
Colour(s) Blue and gold
Newspaper Trinity Lantern
Yearbook The Trinitarian
Affiliations Marist Brothers, the Presentation Sisters and St Carthage's Cathedral Parish
An independent co-educational Catholic college on the Far North Coast of NSW

Trinity Catholic College is an independent co-educational secondary college located over two adjacent campuses on the northern fringe of Lismore, New South Wales, Australia.


St Mary's College for girls was founded by the Presentation sisters in 1886, as a boarding school, and continued its development when the Marist brothers opened St Joseph's high school for boys in 1911. The two schools formally amalgamated to form Trinity Catholic College Lismore in 1985, with a ceremony in late 1984 which laid the banners of St Mary's and St Joseph's schools to rest, and marked the official amalgamation of the two schools into Trinity Catholic College Lismore.

Sexual abuse allegations[edit]

In June, July and August 2014 the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, a royal commission of inquiry initiated in 2013 by the Australian Government and supported by all of its state governments,[1] began an investigation into the response of Marist Brothers to allegations of child sexual abuse in schools in the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales and Queensland.[2] Witnesses gave evidence or made statements before the Royal Commission[3] that the alleged cases of abuse happened during the 1970s and 1980s at Daramalan College, Canberra, at Lismore, Campbelltown and in Far North Queensland.[4][5][6][7]


Trinity's motto is; In Word And Deed. This is based on 1 John 3:18 from the New Testament: "little children, let us love one another, not in word or speech, but in truth and action".


The triangle is an age old symbol of the blessed trinity – The father, Son and Holy Spirit. The cross stands as a reminder of the Christian nature of the college, and is the symbol of the life of Jesus. The Holy Trinity is a belief held by some Christian denominations, but not all, that the father, the son and the Holy Spirit all exist separately but together as a divine being.


The college colours of blue and gold were chosen by students to preserve the Marist tradition. Gold is the metal that never tarnishes, it is a symbol of God and love. Blue is associated with Mary, the mother of God who holds a special place in the college. The royal blue of the vest, jumpers and blazer also is symbolic of the morals and goals for the college.

House structure[edit]

The College's pastoral care structure is based on a House system that consists of ten Houses, led by a Head of House (HoH) and two house captains. Within each house, tutors care for a horizontal house system, where each year is split into house tutors. Families generally belong to the same house.

Students meet with their tutor each day for fifteen minutes, to carry out administrative duties and build a relationship with their peers. These houses are also the students sporting houses.

The ten houses are:

  • Cannane House (aqua) – named after the first principal of Trinity
  • Carthage House (magenta) – named after St Carthage of Lismore, County Waterford, Ireland
  • Champagnat House (royal blue) – named after Marcellin Champagnat, the founder of the Marist brothers
  • Chanel House (red) – named after a principal of St Mary's College
  • D'Arcy House (gold) – named after the founder of the Presentation Sisters' Lismore congregation
  • Dennis House (green) – named after a teacher from Trinity
  • Doyle House (purple) – named after the first Bishop of Lismore, Jeremiah Joseph Doyle (1849–1909)
  • McColl House (black) – named after the first principal of St. Joseph's High
  • Nagle House (white) – named after the founder of the Presentation Sisters, Nano Nagle
  • Wilson House (orange) – named after the pioneer family of Lismore (William Wilson (1805–1886))


Because of the ancient nature of the school, it appears as very unusual architecture with some buildings dating back to foundation and others being as recent as 2010. Trinity has facilities for both the arts and sport which include:

  • State of the art commercial kitchen capable for catering large functions (Graduation Ball).
  • Equipped visual art and music rooms
  • Chapel
  • Three large halls
  • Separate cafeteria, canteen and café
  • Two libraries, each with computer areas, printing stations, air conditioned rooms for viewing movies and comprehensive collections of fictional and non-fictional texts
  • Six computer rooms, each with enough computers for a class
  • The Chanel theatre – used mainly for practicing dramatic performances; it includes adjustable seating, colour lighting, movable canvas backdrop and state of the art flooring
  • The dance studio – for practicing dance; this studio has air conditioning, colour lighting, one permanent mirrored wall and a second collapsible mirrored wall, and sound system
  • The Champagnat theatre – used to perform musical and dramatic pieces to a student or public audience. It features amphitheatre style seating for 250 people, air conditioning, extensive lighting, state of the art flooring, cinema-style screen and projectors and adapted acoustics.
  • Sporting fields
  • Trinity Sports Centre – includes:
    • Two basketball/netball courts with extending divider
    • Step seating for 250 people
    • Foyer & storage areas
    • Two PD/H/PE classrooms
    • First aid room
    • 25 m (82 ft), 8 lane, indoor, heated swimming pool
    • Outdoor basketball/netball courts
    • Language center

The basketball area (known as the TSC hall or Trinity Sports Centre) is also used for full school assemblies. The hall includes space on the floor able to seat 1,300 students, a large stage area, spotlights, sound system, retractable basketball hoops, large projectors and screens on either side of the stage used for multimedia displays, responses and lyrics during ceremonies. The entire sporting complex is air conditioned.

Extra-curricular activities[edit]

The school takes part in a number of extra activities such as debating, public speaking and NIE (a local newspaper writing competition that takes place in the Lismore area).


  1. ^ "Letters Patent". Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Retrieved 12 January 2013. 
  2. ^ "Case Study 13, June 2014, Canberra". Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. 2014. Retrieved 16 May 2015. 
  3. ^ "Witness List and Order". Public hearing into the response by the Marist Brothers to allegations of child sexual abuse. Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. 30 June 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2015. 
  4. ^ Gilbert, Ewan (10 June 2014). "Royal commission into child sexual abuse: Canberra hearings to examine Marist Brothers response". ABC News. Australia. Retrieved 17 May 2015. 
  5. ^ Ellery, David (10 August 2014). "Marist Brothers' schools director should be sacked, say sex abuse victim and lawyer". The Canberra Times. Retrieved 17 May 2015. 
  6. ^ Marszalek, Jessica (11 June 2014). "Northern links in royal commission into child sexual abuse at Marist Brothers school". Cairns Post. Retrieved 17 May 2015. 
  7. ^ Box, Dan (30 June 2014). "Complaints about Marist brother Kostka Chute allege 31 years of abuse". The Australian. Australian Associated Press. Retrieved 17 May 2015. 

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