Dear HRA Families and Friends,
*** Please remember to re-enroll online at the Sycamore website by March 15th (next Friday!) in order to receive the $100.00 discount. The re-enrollment process takes a matter of minutes to complete. I look forward to welcoming your children back next year!
The whirlwind of activities this week made my head spin…in a good way!
Monday, Fr. Scott Medlock, from St. Patrick’s Parish, came to visit for the day because he had missed the Priest luncheon. He and I enjoyed a wonderful visit and then I walked him around the school and invited him to sit in on my Moderns Class. He was so appreciative because he had done the Great Books Program at Notre Dame University himself. He jumped right into the discussion on whether art can be moral or immoral as I introduced my juniors and seniors to the novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. Thank you so much for joining us, Fr. Scott.
On Tuesday our three Greek II students took their national exam. We hope that Patrick Czyz, Justin Klump, and Jacob Owens did very well!
The third and fourth graders”adopted a Cardinal” to pray for during the conclave and wrote touching letters to their Cardinal encouraging him in his efforts. Thank you, Miss Theis, for making this historic moment in the Church something for which the students can invest their gifts and their prayers and thus be connected to the sacred work of the Cardinals. The little ones inspired me to adopt a Cardinal too. Cardinal Filoni of Italy, may the wisdom of the Holy Spirit infuse you and inspire you to cast a thoughtful vote for a holy Pope. Amen!
A huge thank you goes out to Mr. Fleming, our beloved Board member, who spent all of Wednesday speaking to each of the grades about Safe Environment. Mr. Fleming does such a beautiful job of reminding the students of their inherent dignity and worth and encouraging them to always defend and safeguard that gift from God from those who may intend harm. We are blessed to have St. John Fleming, as I call him! Parents are always welcome to come and listen with their children or to opt out of this talk should they prefer to have Safe Environment talks with their own children.
Miss Syren shared with me that her History 7 class made a bingo game for their review of WWII and then proceeded to play it! I enjoy hearing about fun and creative ways for our students to learn and retain information. Bravo to Miss Syren and the students for putting the bingo charts together and enjoying yourselves thoroughly!
The fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth graders enjoyed a trip to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton on Wednesday to watch the sixth graders at SEAS perform Cinderella. It was directed by one of our former teachers, Ali Ann (Marrs) Stramilov. The students enjoyed it very much and we are grateful to SEAS for extending the invitation.
Seniors Jamie Cookson and Marisa Ramos buckled down and procured OMalley’s on the Green for prom this year. The date will be Saturday evening, April 13th from 8 P.M. to Midnight. Grades 7 through 12 are invited and guests must be cleared by the administration.
Thursday, the indoor soccer team, made up of 5th through 8th graders triumphed at the Lumen Christi gym by winning all three of their games. Bravo to the team and thank you to their wonderful student coaches, Jamie and Lee Cookson. A huge thank you to moms, Lisa Cookson and Maureen Klump, for driving and chaperoning the practices and games. Way to go Knights!
Twelve students and three teachers volunteered to be the choir for the priestly ordination of Deacon Ken Bolin on Thursday evening at Our Lady of Guadalupe. The HRA choir was asked to sing at the ordination of former Episcopalian, Ken Bolin who is truly the product of the beautiful work Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI did to bring the Anglicans back into the Roman Catholic Church. In a moving ordination, Fr. Ken Bolin took his vows and received the blessing and imposition of hands from four Bishops, a Monsignor, and about thirty-five priests. Our students and Miss Syren, Mrs. Furby, and Mr. Welsh sang HRA’s signature “Our Father” before the mass and then accompanied three sopranos in the music for the mass. I thank my students and teachers for assisting in this historic ordination! I ran into Arcbhishop Hurley after the mass. He mentioned how much he enjoyed the Priest luncheon and how much he would like to come to the school to offer a mass. I shall invite him soon!
Friday brought exciting news. Our own freshman, Arianna Fouch, won the Faith Walk illustration competition this year. Her drawing will be put on the Faith Walk booklets and buttons for the 2013 Good Friday Faith Walk that convenes downtown. Congratulation, Arianna. We are so proud of you!
Friday the school also set aside time for the seventh through tenth graders to bring in their mandatory Science Fair projects to present them to Mrs. Furby and Mr. Welsh respectively and to their classmates in preparation for the school Science Fair next Thursday, March 14th in St. Dominic’s. I was so proud of the students for coming prepared with some well-considered topics! The juniors and seniors met with me to continue to work on their thesis presentations just a month away.
Four of my theology teachers, Mr. Louis Bolin, Mrs. Marie-Louise Schirda, Miss Therese Syren, and Miss Alex Theis, went to a meeting called by Archbishop Schwietz and Fr. Tom Brundage to speak to Lumen Christi, SEAS, and HRA teachers about the Cardinal Conclave convening this Tuesday. Our teachers came back pleased with the presentation and happy with all of the history and information conveyed by the Archbishop and Fr. Tom. While they were gone, I was able to determine how we will be able to hook a computer up to a television screen to be able to show the live coverage of the white smoke and the emergence of the new Pope should that happen during school hours. It would be such a privilege to share with all of the students this important transition in the Church! Thanks be to God for modern technology when we can use it for the good!
The seniors are putting on a fundraiser dance for prom this Saturday evening. Seniors, Jamie Cookson, Marisa Ramos, and Michael Tappel worked into the wee hours of the morning setting up for the neon-light-themed dance. They have done a beautiful job and have utterly transformed St. Dominic’s Hall. Fellow chaperones, Mrs. Furby, Mr. Welsh, and I will look forward to reporting to you on the success of the dance in next week’s blog.
- Donor and friend of HRA, Mr. Dick Armstrong, will attend our Monday morning assembly for a presentation followed by a talk on his trip to Antarctica. He will speak to the elementary from 8:30-9:45 A.M. in St. Dominic’s and from 10 – 11:15 to the upper school. All are welcome to sit on and enjoy Antarctica vicariously.
- Mr. Rich Owens has invited any interested HRA parents to attend an information meeting on helping to fund raise for the purchase Camp Challenge in between Wasilla and Palmer. Mr. Owens hopes to purchase the property and convert it into a a year-round camp and retreat center for the Catholic Community with the help of the Catholic community. The property is made up of 57 acres of lakefront property with 18 fully-functioning buildings. The camp would be named St. Therese’s Camp and offer summer camps for grades 2-12 as well as retreats throughout the year for the Catholic schools and the parish catechesis and youth groups. The possibilities are endless as to how much this can benefit the Catholic community here in Alaska. Please consider attending the information meeting this Tuesday, March 12th at St. Benedict’s Parish or contributing to the cause. Brochures are available in the office.
- Mr. Beav Deering, a friend of HRA, has founded a local Catholic Men for Life Organization. I ask all of our HRA fathers to consider joining Beav on an important quest. His message and plea to Catholic men is simply this:
“On March 23rd we will gather on the side- walk outside the abortion mill at 4001 Lake Otis Parkway to continuously pray the rosary every hour the facility is open (7:30 am to 6:30 pm). Men who are not accustomed to the rosary, please come and be a presence with us.
We intend to have 100 men present to pray during every hour during the clinic’s business hours. This number may seem high, but if just half of the men in the Anchorage parishes were to offer just one hour, we would easily surpass this number. The thought that this is not achievable is shameful.
Please sign up for at least one hour (two would be better) of your time on Saturday March 23rd. We need you to make this initial project a success so we have a firm footing for the future of this organization. It is a small sacrifice for a great cause. You may sign up online at www.catholicmenforlife.org”
- All the Latin students will take the National Latin exam second period on Tuesday, March 12th.
- Mrs. Pearce will take the P.E. classes to the Dome this Wednesday to test them for the President’s Physical Challenge for which they have been working all semester. The results of their success will be announced at the Awards Assembly at the end of the year.
- Mrs. Jacki Rose has coordinated for outside judges to critique our HRA students’ Science Fair Projects this Thursday, March 14th beginning at 8 A.M. All are welcome to enjoy the presentations or drop in and walk around reading the projects throughout the day. Awards for placement will be given out the following Monday, March 18th at the morning assembly. Parents are welcome.
- Mrs. Pearce will be gone on Friday, March 15th. I am in the process of procuring one of our volunteer art teachers for the upper school to step in and do a project with the students.
- The upper school will go out on Community Service on Friday March 15th.
- Monday March 18th, Miss Neumayr will offer a College Night Overview for 9th, 10th, and 11th grade students and parents. A financial aid officer will be present to explain the FAFSA and other benefits for parents. Miss Neumayr will provide helpful materials to organize the students and parents for the college application process. Please plan to attend this worthwhile evening.
- Tuesday, March 19 – Friday, March 22 will be half days for the upper school. Parents are encouraged to sign up this week for Presentation times. Students will present on some of the most meaningful lessons they have learned this year. It is always a week in which I am so proud of the students and their teachers for all they have accomplished this year!
Do, please check the online calendar or the calendar we sent home to you to see the many upcoming events and activities planned. There is never a dull moment at Holy Rosary Academy.
Please consider inviting a family or two to our OPEN HOUSE, April 10th from 6-9 P.M. The faculty will be on hand, the students will lead tours, and I will meet and sit down with each of the families individually. It is always a wonderful evening. Remember that the school will discount families by $100.00 for recommending one student and $250.00 for bringing two or more students to the school. Your word is so valuable in the community.
God bless you all this week! Remember to pray for and with the Cardinals as they listen to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. God willing, we will be reciting “Viva IL Papa!” by the end of the week.
Miss Catherine Neumayr, Principal