Commemorating Founders’ Day, also known as St Mark’s Day, is a revered annual College tradition to honour and pay our respects to our Patron Saint, founders, benefactors and those members of the College who died in the service of their country.
In his sermon at the recent Founders’ Day Service, College Chaplain Rev’d Grant Moore spoke of the many sacrifices made by “community-minded individuals in every generation.” He continued, “we are their beneficiaries, especially here at St Mark’s. Beneficiaries of time, largesse, and sheer dogged effort! Which, of course, is why we’re here this morning – to commemorate all those, without whose sacrifice, there’d be no St Mark’s College as we know it, no Marksmen and Markswomen with their unique lifestyle and privileges.”
St Mark’s was born and developed in the aftermath of World War I through the idealism and high aspirations of a number of individuals. Our founders believed that the University would be a lesser place if it did not provide a residential opportunity where undergraduates could immerse themselves in a college community with all its academic, intellectual, sporting, pastoral and social support; an academic community which would allow them to fully develop their potential as they transitioned from adolescence to adulthood.
The high achievement and significant contribution made by so many St Mark’s students and alumni over the years shows their vision was correct and much valued in the wider community. The way in which those same alumni keep in touch with their College and provide support to its functions and fundraising shows that the founders’ vision is reciprocated and a clear appreciation of the special benefits that being a member of the College can bring.
As morning tea was served around the Pond, the Chairman, Mr Richard Burchnall raised a toast in Benedictine from the Canterbury Decanter and thanked all who attended to pay their respects.