Dear HRA families and friends,
Six weeks of school have flown by. This week, the students adapted to some pretty cool temperatures with grace.
The week began with another School Assembly in which the Soccer Team told us about the two victories they enjoyed the previous week. Mr. and Mrs. Shaut told us about spending some time with Fr. James Barrand in Anaheim on their trip. Every week, the students sing and cheer louder and louder when they sing the school fight song. I am enjoying watching the classes and students come together as a big, happy family.
Tuesday the Soccer team defeated Birchwood in their second tournament victory. Lee Cookson kicked in three goals and Mary Tappel one as they led the Knights to a 4-0 victory. This week they have practiced diligently in preparation for their trip to the Kenai to see if they can win the whole tournament. (I just received word that the team defeated Wasilla 1-0 and remain undefeated in the tournament!) I look forward to telling you about the outcome next week. In the meantime, I would be remiss if I did not profoundly thank the parent chaperones for bravely taking care of our team. Thank you to the coaches, Robby Cookson and Patrick Klump. Thank you to parents, Maureen Klump, Lisa Cookson, Bonnie Siebs, Pam Bjelland and Peter Knox! I am headed down to root on the Knights tomorrow, Saturday. This team has afforded all of us a great experience.
Mr. Lucas, our Girls Volleyball Coach, came in to discuss the team and shared with me some wonderful news about his son, a national wresting champion. This summer, eighth grader, Michael Lucas drove down to Idaho with his father and competed and won 5th place in the Western Regional and 8th in the National Competition. Michael Lucas is a National All American in Freestyle Wresting! Bravo and congratulations to you, Michael. We are so proud of you. You are humble in victory. I’m so glad your father came to fill me in!
Wednesday was a regular day but Thursday was busy! We enjoyed a beautiful all-school mass. Thank you to Fr. Augustine Highlander, our Dominican chaplain for sharing your incredible pilgrimage to the shrine of Santiago or St. James. Your description of the 200+ miles of walking and of your experience of the great Cathedral had the kindergartners to faculty attending with rapt attention. Sophomore, Arianna Fouch, cantored the psalm which was also a great treat. Thank you Arianna!
After the mass, the staff, students, and parents quickly converted St. Dominic’s into a luncheon space to host the priests of the Archdiocese. We were graced to host the retired Archbishop Hurely, Fr. Leo Walsh, Fr. Andrew Lee, Fr. Tom Lilly, Fr. Fisher, Fr. Augustine, Fr. Paul, Fr. Sidun, Fr. Patrick Brosamer, and Deacon Kaiser (of St. Nicholas of Myra). Nathan Kryweski, Youth Minister of SEAS also joined us. We are so happy that Board members, Tom Fink, Max Hodel, and Gena Columbus were also in attendance. The 11th and 12 graders served the guests and the delicious lasagna, caesar salad, and pesto, garlic bread was supplied by the cook extraordinaire and HRA mother, Michelle Droege. Dessert of fresh fruit and scrumptious short bread cookies was supplied by HRA Mom, Angela Cook. Thank you to the wonderful parent volunteers, Danielle O’Neill, Ingrid Carlson, Kristy Murray, and Jennifer Swanson. Teachers John Haggard and Matthew Krepel also pitched in and helped with set-up. My Office Manager, Jordan Brittain, was my Girl Friday and worked tirelessly to make the event beautiful.
It is my Music Director, Mrs. Colleen Carter Duncan, who deserves high praise, however, for her preparation of the students for their first mini-concert of the year. The K-6 sang “Angel Gabriel” and then the fifth and sixth graders sang a dear song they are practicing for the Festival of Lessons and Carols. We then had a recitation of a Robert Louis Stevenson poem from the first and second grade, prepared by Mrs. Verreux and finished with a beautiful Advent Song the high school has been practicing for our winter concert. The children sang out beautifully and the priests were much impressed. The program finished with a student panel comprised of eleventh and twelfth graders who fielded the priests’ questions and spoke eloquently about the school. I was pleased with their responses as were the priests! Thank you to the whole HRA community for coming together to welcome the priests and thank them for their support of Catholic education and our school. This is the third year in a row that we have been able to host the priests. It is a dear tradition that I plan to continue.
I also want to thank Mr. Thompson for going into his granddaughter’s kindergarten class to teach the children about fossils. The students looked at all kinds of rocks and imprints as well as a dinosaur tooth. They were fascinated and spent the afternoon drawing what they saw! Thank you, Mr. Thompson, for inspiring wonder in these little minds! Thank you also for the maintenance work you are doing for the fences around campus these days. You are a wonder yourself!
Friday, 18 of our students left for the soccer tournament; thus, the teachers planned especially fun activities for the upper school students. They enjoyed their classes and then spent the afternoon brainstorming about their plans for the auction. Every year the student contributions are often the most fun to see and bid upon! The students’ ideas for this year already seem exciting! Meanwhile, in the elementary, the kindergartners enjoyed strawberry cupcakes made by Mrs. Verbout in honor of her birthday. In the spirit of our Catholic faith, Mrs. Verbout brought a gift for others instead of waiting for gifts to come to her. YOU are a gift to us Mrs. Verbout! Thank you for joining our faculty and happy birthday to you!
Auction excitement has begun. Thank you to the wonderful parents who are bringing in items and signing up for tables. Miss Brittain and Miss DiCiero are delighted to help you through the process if you come into the front office with questions. The response to our pleas for gift certificates and items is going well. Thank you Auction Committee Team and all those who helped this week!
- Continue to work on completing your auction responsibilities as the event is only three weeks away. We hope many of you will create a table of friends to enjoy the event itself. See Miss DiCiero in the office to confirm seats or a whole table.
- Keep up the great raffle efforts. Students in uniforms seems to be the winning combination. I am looking for a parent who might want share hours for helping to arrange dates and times for parents to sell at the local parishes. If you are interested, contact Miss Neumayr!
- LIFETOUCH pictures is coming to take individual and class pictures on Tuesday from 8-10 A.M. Be sure to have your child arrive well-groomed in a cleaned and pressed uniform! Forms have been sent home and you may go online to order the pictures ahead of time if you would like. More forms are available in the school office.
- All School Mass will be held in St. Dominic’s Hall this Thursday at 10:15 A.M.. All are welcome.
- Upper school students will have time on Friday to work on their auction projects. Please help your child if he or she needs some items to bring for assembling his or her project at school.
- Holy Cross Parish asked me to post this opportunity to purchase religious objects perfect for Christmas or for children receiving the Sacraments. Please support this worthy cause.
Holy Cross Parish Presents A Uniquely Catholic Fund Raiser – We have a great variety of quality Christian jewelry including; Catholic medals, crucifixes, bracelets, rings and rosaries for you to choose from. Everything is priced reasonably for you while supporting our Faith Formation Program! These beautiful religious articles will enhance your faith journey and/or the faith of those you purchase gifts for. Our group earns a profit on every item sold, you get beautiful sacramentals to enhance your own spiritual life or to purchase as gifts to enhance the spiritual life of your loved ones. October 5th through October 20th at Holy Cross parish in the Fellowship Hall.
Have a blessed, holy, and peaceful weekend.
P.S. On a personal note, I had the joy of learning that my youngest sister, Anne, delivered a healthy 8 pd. 9 oz. little girl, Madeline Jean, on Wednesday morning. She is my fourth niece and one of seven nieces and nephews for me. Hope she comes to HRA one day!