When I think about the Catholic Education Foundation, I smile. I smile because I cannot think about CEF without seeing the faces of students in our Catholic schools, and those faces always have the biggest ear-to-ear smiles and grins. In fact, the smiles of our students almost distract from their eyes. Our students’ eyes sparkle…well, maybe they do not sparkle during math tests (!)…but they definitely sparkle when they talk about their schools.
For many of us, Catholic Schools Week is a time to celebrate Catholic education opportunities and be thankful for the students, families, parishioners, community members, and teachers that make it all work. For me, it serves as a time to reflect on the blessing that Catholic education has been for me.
Confucius once said, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” I am fortunate enough to live by this mantra. This is my 6th year teaching in a Catholic school and my 13th year at John Paul II/Queen of the Holy Rosary, as I attended grade school there from K-8 and now teach there.
This season of Advent brings us the gift of hope.
Hope that the celebration of the birth of Christ will bring new birth within our own faith journey.
Hope in ourselves to be the best disciples of Christ that we can be.
Hope in the new beginnings that the gift of reconciliation brings, repairing our broken relationship with Jesus and others.
Hope in the knowledge that birth of Christ leads to the promises of Easter.
As we sat in a quiet classroom in her school, 13-year-old Maddie twisted the bright band on her wrist.
“A couple of years ago my dad had cancer,” she said softly, recounting the day her dad had given her the bracelet.
“It symbolizes his love for me,” she said. “I never take it off.”
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