February 6, 2016
To wrap up Catholic Schools Week yesterday, one of our teachers, Sr. Susan Marie Lindstrom, OSB, shared the following reflection and prayer with students and staff:
When I began to reflect on my experience of Catholic education, I realized that I have been involved with Catholic schools for 50 years… 18 as a student, and 32 years as a teacher.
There are 2 gifts that stand out for me in Catholic education. First, the gift of community. Every school I have attended, each school in which I have taught, has provided a sense of an extended family, people who know each other, care about each other, and celebrate life’s highs and lows together.
The sense of community is connected to the second gift, that of prayer. When Ben Fillenwarth died several years ago, our chapel became a place where people could gather and pray together; when Mrs. Klee was preparing to marry, a rosary was prayed for her and her husband-to-be; two years ago when the suicides of two non-Chatard students unsettled many of us, we came together to pray and cry and reassure each other that we are loved and valued and not alone.
My greatest joy and privilege is to be entrusted with the life of another when they ask me to hold something in prayer. Many days I go home and write those intentions on our monastery prayer board, confident that there is power and healing in praying for and with each other.
Catholic Schools Week is ending, but we will always be a community. Let’s celebrate that reality every day!
Good and Gracious God,
Long ago, you sent your Son to teach Your people how to live lives that reflect Your loving presence.
Bless us today and every day of our lives as we try to learn the lessons first taught by Jesus: to love our neighbor and to turn the other cheek.
Open our hearts and our hands to reach out to the poor, the hungry, the lonely, and the marginalized… those right here in our Bishop Chatard community, those in our city, our state, our nation and our world.
As Catholic Schools Week draws to a close, help us to value the privilege of being able to talk about You freely, the gift of being able to share Eucharist together, and the joy of discovering gifts and talents as we participate in the life of this community each day.
May we each grow in faith, leadership, learning, and service throughout the remainder of this school year.