For the past 10 years, it has been my privilege to be the principal of your school working with an extraordinary faculty, staff and parish ministers providing a Catholic Education to students from 2 and a half year olds through 8th grade.
I remember learning in my graduate program that education can be defined as how we pass on our culture. Catholic Education, then, is how we pass on our Catholic culture. As Saint Mary’s parishioners, you define that culture. It is the school’s job to pass along your collective wisdom, faith, traditions, values and priorities to the next generation.
Each week, here at Mass, we hear what it means to be a disciple of Christ. I have yet to hear Fr. Renninger tell us that it is easy. Being Christian calls us to Gospel values that are constantly under attack by popular culture. Teaching our youth to follow the example of Jesus is simply not easy. The school is here to assist families with passing on our Catholic culture to the next generation.
For the past week, the school has celebrated Catholic Schools week with a variety of fun activities. One day was devoted to saying thank you to parents, staff, and friends for the opportunity to be at Saint Mary’s. On behalf of the students, I have been asked to thank you, the parish of Saint Mary’s, for making our Christ centered school available. For 50 years, your sacrifice and support has made a very special education available to so many of our children.
As you would expect, daily prayer is a very important part of what we teach and do at Saint Mary’s. We have identified a second grade class that has been praying for snow. I have asked them to pray instead for our sister school in Haiti, with hope that Fr. Guy will bring along a tropical vortex when he visits later this month.