Dear Parents/ Guardians,
It has been an exciting 2 weeks of school in more ways than one. I would like to thank all of you who came to our Back to School Home and School Meeting. We had an excellent turnout. For those of you who missed the evening, feel free to call me with any questions. We reviewed our school mission, our Diocesan motto and theme for the year, “To Jesus through Mary,” discipline and communication policies, and heard a few school, parish, and Home and School updates. Our Pastor, Father Nick, welcomed everyone and thanked the parents for choosing our parish school. He assured them that they made the best choice.
Today at our first school Mass Father Nick introduced our new Associate Pastor, Father Mark Wrightson. Father Wrightson joined us for our faculty retreat and we are thrilled to have him with us. Today is the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows. Father Nick did a wonderful job of explaining the 7 sorrows of Mary. He told the students that our Blessed Mother had times in her life when she was very sad. Father Nick gave them examples of Mary hiding with her baby in fear for His life, watching her son be nailed to the cross, and worrying when He went missing as a young boy. Father Nick told the children that Mary is sad and cries for us when bad things happen in our world and that she is always with us. He let them know that whenever we talk to Mary, we are talking to Jesus because Mary and Jesus together are always there for us.
Our Blessed Mother will be our focus this year. Personally, she has always been my focus of prayer. When my son had cancer and was fighting for his life, I prayed the Rosary constantly, and it was a source of great comfort to me. I want you all to know that yesterday when one of our students passed out and was in the hallways waiting for EMTs, her classmates did not carry on. They did not make a sound. They were not disruptive. Instead, they began to pray the Rosary, on their own, without adult leadership in the classroom. One student started, and the entire class joined in. We had eyes on the class, but were not attending to their needs. This is precisely why I love Catholic school. When given the opportunity to be social, our students decided to unselfishly pray the Rosary for their friend. I had to share that with you. It brought tears of pride to my eyes and Ms. Casale’s. Your children are fabulous! The good news is that our student who passed out yesterday was discharged and home before bedtime last night. She should return to school on Monday.
This Tiger Talk will be less about updates and more about prayer requests today. We are a truly blessed parish, but we have several families in need of your prayers. The students are NOT aware of my next update. You are the first to know, and I ask that you use your discretion this weekend in sharing the news with your children, if and how you see fit to do so. One of our 6th grade students, Mateo Ahumada, is presently at Nemours A.I. DuPont Hospital for Children. Mateo was just diagnosed with Leukemia. He is in good spirits and doing well considering his recent diagnosis of Leukemia two days ago. He is already receiving treatment. Mateo, who happened to be my son’s church buddy, is currently in the same room my son was in at A.I. and is receiving care from the same incredible medical team. Mateo will have the best care! I am sure of it. I find it interesting that Christopher was Matteo’s church buddy. I believe that is a good sign. My son is happy and healthy at the University of Delaware, and I have true faith that Mateo will be happy and healthy again in God’s time. Mateo’s mom asks for your prayers. Again, I can personally tell you that this parish school family is amazing, and your prayers can make miracles happen. You prayed for Father Nick (Stage 4 pancreatic cancer), and he is back to work and giving his terrific homilies to your children. Please pray for Mateo and his entire family, as they adjust to their new normal. Please refrain from visiting at this time. This is a lot to process. They currently do not have a specific name for what type of Leukemia Mateo has, so there is a lot of planning and coordinating to do. They should have some details today. I promise to keep you updated any time his mom shares with me. Today she simply asked for prayers, and I assured her she had them.
Sadly, we had a school parent pass away suddenly and unexpectedly yesterday. Emily Anderson (2nd Grade) lost her mother, Jennifer Clare Burgun, at the young age of 40. Funeral services are this upcoming Tuesday at 11:00 A.M. here at St. Anthony’s. Please keep sweet little Emily and her entire extended family in your prayers. We did not share this information with the students in Emily’s class, due to their age.
On a happier note, Nick Mercantini, our student who was paralyzed from the neck down last year in a trampoline accident, is making progress again after a setback. Nick went into cardiac arrest at home a few weeks ago and was rushed back to Nemours. Fortunately, he is no longer in ICU. Stepping down from ICU is a good thing. It is actually a step up. He can now have PT and OT more frequently on the unit. Progress is slow, but it is certainly progress. Nick’s family is so very thankful for your prayers and asks that you continue to hold them in prayer.
Let’s keep all of our children and families in our prayers. This is a strong and powerful community. Thank you! You are part of a great team! I hope you will consider joining us for one of our Friday Masses. Our Masses are every Friday at 8:00 A.M. (unless there is a Holy Day of Obligation during the week).
Altar servers needed! If your 4th – 8th Grade child is interested in becoming an altar server, please contact Mr. Bob Shields at firstname.lastname@example.org.
October Parish Monthly Socials
Please join us for the first parish social of the fall, to be held on Sunday, October 1st, after the 9:00 A.M. and 11:00 A.M. Masses in the Ballad Room of the Grade School. Enjoy a variety of great food, including tomato pie and donuts from Serpe’s Bakery, breakfast pizza from Degnar’s Greenhill Deli, and other delicious food selections including mini-bagels and fresh fruit while catching up with fellow parishioners and friends. We hope to see you there!
- Saturday, September 16th – Cross Country Meet – Brecknock State Park – 9:00 A.M.
- Varsity Volleyball Game – Ursuline Academy – 10:00 A.M.
- JV Volleyball Game – St. Peter’s New Castle – 12:00 P.M.
- Sunday, September 17th – JV Volleyball Game – Fournier – 12:00 P.M.
- Thursday, September 21st – CDOW Boy Scouts Meeting – Ballad Room – 6:00-8:00 P.M.
- Friday, September 22nd – Varsity Volleyball Game – Fournier – 6:00 P.M.
- Saturday, September 23rd – Varsity Volleyball Game – Holy Angels – 1:00 P.M.
- Sunday, September 24th – Cross Country Meet – Tatnall School – 1:00 P.M.
- Varsity Volleyball Game – Fournier – 12:00 P.M.
- JV Volleyball Game – Fournier – 2:00 P.M.
- Monday, October 2nd – 8th Grade Confirmation Meeting – Ballad Room – 6:00 P.M.
- Wednesday, October 4th – Our Lady Queen of Peace Pilgrimage – Holy Spirit Church – 10:00 A.M.
- Thursday, October 5th – Noon Dismissal
- Friday, October 6th – NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS- Professional Development for Teachers/Staff
I hope to see some of you this Sunday at our Home and School Crab Feast! Our next Tiger Talk will be alive with pictures. At this time I held off on inserting pictures, as we await a few more of your signatures on Photo/Video Release Forms. Be our friend on Facebook at St. Anthony of Padua Grade School Families, Alumni & Friends. Please visit our website for upcoming calendar events. This calendar is updated daily.
“From Mary, we learn to surrender to God’s will in all things. From Mary, we learn to trust even when all hope seems gone. From Mary, we learn to love Christ her Son and the Son of God.” ~ Blessed Pope John Paul II