I look forward to Catholic Schools Week. There always are so many fun and inspirational activities planned around the school and parish. It’s also a week in which I reminisce about and give thanks for my own Catholic education – and mostly for the eight years that I spent at St. Peter’s grade school in Beaver Dam, WI.
I remember the friendships I developed in my grade-school years, many of which are still strong today (I have a long weekend planned in July with a group of friends I first met in first grade). I remember picking out my first rosary and how I always wanted to be the one chosen to proclaim the reading at the school Mass. My father coached the school basketball team. St. Martin de Porres was our class patron saint. One year I had to dress up as a nun for a skit in our school variety show. Even that was a good memory (as long as nobody still has any photos)!
Above all I am grateful that, due to the love and sacrifice of my parents and teachers and many other people, the gift of God came to me in a way that would be deep and lasting. I learned from a young age the voice of the Good Shepherd and it has been a voice that has guided me and saved me in more ways than I can tell.
I do regret, however, that I will not be back in time for the school open house this Sunday after the 10:30 Mass. You all are welcome to go over to the school. Classrooms will be open for you to visit. There will be crafts and snacks and a “Down Under Discovery” experience featuring Australian animals.
It makes me wonder if somewhere there are Catholic school students in Australia who are being entertained with animals from Minnesota – maybe some exotic gophers or squirrels.
Resolve this week to keep bringing the children to God. Cherish the gift of our Catholic faith so that it may be shared for generations to come. The difference it makes is vital and enduring. Faith in Jesus Christ is the one gift that brings life and light to everything else.