Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, January 24, 2021

Even though we may be apart, we are still connected.

I was listening to a podcast and the host, Sarah Mae (The Complicated Heart), had a guest who suggested that we wake up every morning and choose who is in charge of the day. Is it me? Is it they? Or is it God? Good question. Living through a global pandemic can make it feel as if they are in charge more than ever. We know we still have the power to handle our days, so we claim our new regulations and put our best foot forward. We are in charge. It is a common thought, that if I am to be successful, I must be in charge of my day. I grab life and drive it with my foot on the gas and my hands firming on the wheel. I am handling the details of my life and I am winning. Until I am not. Things go wrong. Sickness, an oversight, a mistake, disappointment, worry, sin, unsolvable problems, death. We have all been there. It is dark and it is lonely. We all know the obvious answer. God has to be in charge. So we must get up every day and lift our palms to Heaven and  ask God to guide us. We do this through prayer. We do this through the Holy Spirit who unites us all.

All of us who have received one and the same Spirit, that is, the Holy Spirit, are in a sense blended together with one another and with God. For if Christ, together with the Father’s and his own Spirit, comes to dwell in each of us, though we are many, still the Spirit is one and undivided. He binds together the spirits of each and every one of us, . . . and makes all appear as one in him. For just as the power of Christ’s sacred flesh unites those in whom it dwells into one body, I think that in the same way the one and undivided Spirit of God, who dwells in all, leads all into spiritual unity (part 1, chap. 3, Catechism of the Catholic Church).

We need each other. January is cold.  Life is hard. People we know are suffering. The future is uncertain.  At the very least, we are bored. Human contact or attempts to resume social activity feels unsafe and so we close in tighter to our homes and ourselves. It feels lonely. Maybe you are making the best of your extra time.  I have filled in my extra time with sorting, reading, walking, listening to podcasts (Father Todd’s article last week listed several that are excellent), on-line classes etc. This is not filling the void of social interaction. I miss field trips, community breakfasts, movie night in the gym, staff lunches, sports, and parties. I am sure our students are missing them too. We are getting used to being disconnected and it feels like a slow ache.

We are not alone. We are in this together. We know this, but it is easy to get lost in the chaos or in the mundane.  I may not be able to see you or even know you are on my team, but when we pray, we are together. We are connected by the Holy Spirit. We are loved and we are able to share this love. Even though we may be apart, we are still connected. Go Team!

When the feeling of loneliness strikes, this beautiful prayer can help remind us of our love for God. He is the creator of everything we hold dear to our hearts. This prayer, written by Pope Pius VI gives us comfort in knowing that if we place the Lord first, the rest of life’s plans will fall into place accordingly.

Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, hear us. Christ graciously hear us.
God, the Father of heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Ghost, Have mercy on us.

Holy Trinity, one God, Have mercy on us.

Thou Who art Infinite Love, Have mercy on us.
Thou Who didst first love me, Have mercy on us.

Thou Who commandest me to love Thee, Have mercy on us.

 With all my heart, I Love Thee, O My God
With all my soul, I Love Thee, O My God
With all my mind, I Love Thee, O My God
With all my strength, I Love Thee, O My God
Above all possessions and honors, I Love Thee, O My God
Above all pleasures and enjoyments, I Love Thee, O My God
More than myself, and everything belonging to me, I Love Thee, O My God
More than all my relatives and friends, I Love Thee, O My God
More than all men and angels, I Love Thee, O My God
Above all created things in heaven or on earth, I Love Thee, O My God
Only for Thyself, I Love Thee, O My God
Because Thou art the sovereign Good, I Love Thee, O My God
Because Thou art infinitely worthy of being loved, I Love Thee, O My God
Because Thou art infinitely perfect, I Love Thee, O My God
Even hadst Thou not promised me heaven, I Love Thee, O My God
Even hadst Thou not menaced me with hell, I Love Thee, O My God
Even should Thou try me by want and misfortune, I Love Thee, O My God
In wealth and in poverty, I Love Thee, O My God
In prosperity and in adversity, I Love Thee, O My God
In health and in sickness, I Love Thee, O My God
In life and in death, I Love Thee, O My God
In time and in eternity, I Love Thee, O My God
In union with that love wherewith all the saints and all the angels love Thee in heaven, I Love Thee, O My God
In union with that love wherewith the Blessed Virgin Mary loveth Thee, I Love Thee, O My God
In union with that infinite love wherewith Thou loves Thyself eternally, I Love Thee, O My God

My God, Who dost possess in incomprehensible abundance all that is perfect and worthy of love, annihilate in me all guilty, sensual, and undue love for creatures. Kindle in my heart the pure fire of Thy love, so that I may love nothing but Thee or in Thee, until being so entirely consumed by holy love of Thee, I may go to love Thee eternally with the elect in heaven, the country of pure love. 

 

God Bless,

Anne Atkin, Principal

 

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, January 17, 2021

DIGNITY OF THE HUMAN PERSON- How can we recognize and value the gifts of others?

“Our God-given dignity as human persons with human rights comes from having been created by God and being capable of knowing, loving and glorifying God, unlike all other earthly creatures.”

The Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario, Fundamental Principles of Catholic Social Teaching http://www.acbo.on.ca

Each person is created in the image of God. The inherent dignity of the human person which comes from God, and the right to have that dignity respected from conception to natural death, is at the core of all moral and social teachings which are rooted in scripture and the teachings and traditions of our Catholic faith.

How can we recognize and value the gifts of others? This class exercise or group ice breaker is a great resource for teaching how to look at our brothers and sisters in Christ. How to truly see and how we want to be seen. We want to be seen for the soul we are creating and not just what appears on the surface.

Students must first take a look at how their thoughts and experiences make them unique. We are made of love, meant to love and meant to be loved. So we practice loving ourselves and then, as we share this poem, we can see the beauty in each of us.

FIRST STANZA

I am (name)

I am (2 special characteristics you have)

I love (people you appreciate)

I believe (something you put faith in or think is true)

I feel (a feeling you have often)

I dislike (something you do not approve of)

I appreciate (something you are thankful for)

I am (the first line of the poem repeated)

SECOND STANZA

I am (2 more characteristics you have)

I do (things you do for others)

I wonder (something of curiosity)

I worry (something that bothers you)

I cry (something that makes you sad)

I wish (something you wish would come true)

I am (the first line of the poem repeated)

THIRD STANZA

I am (2 things you are good at)

I understand (something that is true)

I dream (something you dream about)

I would like (an actual desire)

I try (something you really make an effort about)

I hope (something you hope for)

I am (the first line of the poem repeated)

http://www.readwritethink.org/files/resources/lesson_images/lesson391/I-am-poem.pdf

God Bless,
Anne Atkin, principal
Sacred Heart School
Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith. Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus. Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

 

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, January 10, 2021

The Christmas Season (for Catholics) for Kids and Adults

January 10th– The Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

The feast of the Baptism of the Lord celebrates the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist. We know that — since Jesus was born without sin — he did not really need to be baptized. And yet, Jesus welcomes his own baptism as an example for the rest of us and as a sign of his true identity. He is God’s son, the living presence of God on earth. When we renew our baptismal promises, we proclaim our belief in the waters of baptism and our new and ongoing life in Christ.

Take some time this month to talk to your kids about their own baptism (even if you’ve told the story before!). Talk about who was there, how their godparents were chosen and the celebration after the ritual. What a great time to share that Jesus is with us always, even when things don’t go as perfectly as planned.

Roman Catholics (and some other Christians) mark the end of the liturgical Christmas season with the celebration of the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, which falls on the Sunday after the Feast of the Epiphany (usually the second Sunday of January). Ordinary Time begins the day after the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord.

Fun fact: Centuries ago, the baptism of Christ was the primary event celebrated as part of the feast of the Epiphany, along with the visit of the Magi and other events from the childhood of Jesus. Epiphany means “manifestation” or “appearance.” So while the baptism of Christ marks the beginning of his public ministry, it is also part of his “manifestation” or “appearance”—one of the events signaling that God has broken into human history in a unique way.

Bonus! The Presentation of the Lord

December 25 – February 2 (The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord)

But wait, there’s more! The Church circles back around to the Christmas season forty days after Christmas, on the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord. The Law of Moses required first-born sons to be dedicated to the Lord, so Mary and Joseph dutifully brought the baby Jesus to the Temple for his dedication and circumcision (Luke 2:22-38). In some countries (and some households), it is traditional to keep Christmas decorations up until this feast.

This feast is also traditionally known as Candlemas; centuries ago, the feast was accompanied by a candlelight procession and a blessing of beeswax candles from the home.

This Sunday we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord. “After Jesus was baptized, he came from the water and behold, the heavens were opened [for him], and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove [and] coming upon him. And a voice came from the heavens, saying, ‘This is my beloved son, with whom I am well pleased’ ” (Mt 3:16-17).

This information and other great articles are available at https://teachingcatholickids.com/

God Bless,

Anne Atkin, principal

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

 

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, January 3, 2020

It is a Brand New Year

Help me, God my Savior, for the glory of Your name, deliver me and forgive me for my sins for Your name’s sake. Lord, I pray that You remove my guilt and wipe away my sins so that I can draw closer to You. With You there is forgiveness so that I can, with reverence, serve You. I praise You for forgiving me for my sins even though I do not deserve it! Thank You for loving me unconditionally, Amen!   Psalm 79:9 & Psalm 130:4

During the first week of Advent, Bishop Boyea asked two great questions in the article entitled Advisory: The Perfect Christmas Gift. In this article, he talks about forgiveness and repentance and how they can heal and change you. The questions are: Still don’t know what to give your family for Christmas? Why not surprise them with a new, improved version of you? One that is more happy, peaceful and easier to live beside. The full article can be found here: https://www.dioceseoflansing.org/office-bishop  You can sign up for Bishop Boyea’s Friday Memo at that address as well.

This article touched me on a deep level and I was inspired to do exactly that. Give my family a better, more peaceful version of myself. But Advent and the end of 2020 at school is very busy. Here it was, Christmas already and I was still the same old me. As it turns out, four weeks of Advent is not enough time for me to really dive into forgiveness and repentance. So, I would like to give my family the gift of a more peaceful me as a New Year resolution.

Forgiveness

I have a bad habit of hanging on to my hurt. Maybe you do too. The times I have been wounded and the times I have injured, can pop into my head unexpectedly. It is easy to pretend that we are over it. That it is all in the past or that everything worked out in the end. We are wiser and stronger for persevering through the times when we have had to apologize for hurting someone. Or the times when we had to forgive when we are wounded. Yet, it can continue to bubble up when we least expect it. The times I was left out or judged. The times I was misunderstood and not shown God’s grace and had to fight for myself. This type of sin is sneaky because we can harm or be harmed with a harsh word or a quick judgement. Yet, the effect can last in our soul until we truly give the hurt to God.

Our children do it too. Feelings can get hurt quickly when they feel left out or say mean things. These injuries can be long lasting. The students at Sacred Heart are taught that they are beautiful through this sin. They are taught that injuring each other is normal and so is forgiving yourself and others, by talking to God through prayer and confession. We will injure people. We will be injured. It is in how we think about it, that we can find divine purpose in the day. Children who are taught that they are a beautiful gift from God with special talents will be more at peace because they try to shine this light on those around them. So we love them and build them up with respect and understanding and they have an easier time with forgiveness and repentance. The concept is a simple one, but like all things that involve our brain, we must practice it everyday. So, this year, we will really get after forgiveness and repentance. The perfect gift to give our families. A more peaceful me.

Have a Happy New Year and Blessed 2021.

God Bless,

Anne Atkin, Principal

 

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

 

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, December 27, 2020

We are so grateful to all of the sponsors of our Christmas Basket Sale. Because of your generosity, we are able to bring Christ to the center of each school day. Thank you for helping us achieve our vision of serving this community and bringing every child closer to Christ.  We promise to be good stewards of your donation.

Blessings to you all!

Anne Atkin, principal

 

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

 

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, December 20, 2020

Remember the past with gratitude.

Live the present with enthusiasm.

Look forward to the future with joy.”

Saint John Paul II

 

Thank you for your generous support of Sacred Heart School. We are truly blessed by your willingness to support Catholic education in Hudson. Sacred Heart School is thriving because people like you choose to give with your heart.

We are grateful beyond words for the outpouring of support for our Christmas Basket Sale. The enthusiastic response from our community gives us the extra encouragement we need during a challenging year. Your donation ensures that we are able to share the unconditional love of Jesus as we teach our students in the Catholic faith.

Thank you to school secretary, Christie LaRussa, who made the Chex Mix and Spiced Nuts for our Baskets. She is a gifted baker who donated much time to make delicious treats for us to enjoy!

It is with a full heart that we finish out the first portion of the school year. At the beginning of the year, we decided that we would keep Sacred Heart as normal as possible while following regulations to keep us safe. Every teacher and member of the staff has done their part to clean, disinfect, change schedules, wear masks and be flexible. They have made all of these necessary changes and sacrifices with professionalism and dignity. The staff at Sacred Heart has proven to be nothing short of amazing. A huge thank you to every one of them as they head into a much deserved Christmas break.

Have a Merry Christmas and may God bless your family with comfort and joy.

Anne Atkin, Principal

 

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

 

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, December 13, 2020

The students at Sacred Heart stop at the end of the day to pray together. Every week, we choose a prayer and say it for the week in hopes of memorizing, or at least, becoming very familiar with it. This week, we are saying the Anima Christi. It seems to fit in perfectly with the second week of advent prayers (prayed at morning prayer) which focus on peace and focus on Christ.

The Anima Christi is a beautiful and poetic Communion prayer dating to the 14th century.  It is commonly prayed before or after receiving the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament.

Anima Christi

Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, fill me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O good Jesus, hear me.
Within Thy wounds hide me.
Never permit me to be separated from Thee.
From the wicked enemy defend me.
At the hour of death call me
And bid me come unto Thee,
That with Thy saints I may praise Thee
For ever and ever. Amen.

The moments after receiving our Lord in the Eucharist are precious. One way to remain focused and attuned to the presence of Jesus within us is to recite the Anima Christi. Said slowly, thoughtfully, and prayerfully, this prayer can help us deepen our union with Christ in profound ways.

Have a joyful Advent Season!

Anne Atkin, Principal

 

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

 

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, December 6, 2020

Feast Day of St. Nicholas ~ December 6th

St. Nicholas is a special friend to children, sailors, prisoners and everyone in need.

Nicholas lived a long time ago, in the 4th century. He grew up to be Bishop in a city called Myra.  He used all of his money to help people in need and people who were sick or poor. He helped secretly, so no one knew who had done the good deeds. We remember him because he loved God and was good and kind.

Saint Nicholas, show us the way to Bethlehem to see Jesus, the Christ Child. Help us to follow your example, sharing Jesus’ love with everyone and caring for those in need.

This feast day is also a good opportunity to tell kids the true story of “Santa Claus.” Find out five ways to celebrate the feast with your kids. 

Another good resource is The Saint Nicholas Center, which is a website dedicated to Saint Nicholas.

The Visit of Bishop Nicholas

Perhaps the most wide-spread tradition connected to the feast of St. Nicholas involves the bishop “visiting” the homes of children. In some places, someone dressed up as St. Nicholas would examine the children about their faith; more commonly today, children leave their shoes or socks out on the eve of the feast day so that St. Nicholas can fill them with treats overnight.

If you’re looking for appropriate treats to leave in your children’s shoes overnight, consider getting chocolate coins, a reminder of his secret gift to the three young maidens of Myra. Chocolate coins are generally available around this time of year at any retailer with a large selection of candy. 

Another appropriate treat would be the candy cane, which is shaped like the bishop’s crozier (the pastoral staff with a curved top). Incidentally, the candy cane gets its bent shape thanks in part to Fr. Gregory Harding Keller, the brother-in-law of the first manufacturer of the treat; he invented a machine to automate the process of bending the stick candy.

Advent is a great time to involve children in random acts of kindness to share and inspire God’s love while we wait for Christmas. Let’s have some fun spreading Christmas cheer!

 

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

 

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, November 29, 2020

Advent prayers for your family

During Advent, reflection and prayer help us to maintain awareness of God’s mercy towards us. In this time of Advent, let us remember that mercy comes with love and solidarity. Prayer helps us to remember to spread God’s love as we wait for the birth of Jesus.

Prayer for the Advent Wreath—God the Father, who sheds light on the world, Give us strength in this season of Advent. Prepare us to be better Christians. Let the Holy Spirit give us courage and guide us in our actions and our prayers. Lord, we ask you to make your son Jesus our example and inspiration. Let the Virgin Mary accompany us and carry us in her arms. And let the saints be our fellow travelers on the way to your mercy. We ask you for all of this with open and willing hearts. Amen

The liturgical year begins with Advent, the four weeks prior to Christmas. It is a season of preparation, waiting, and anticipation.  Christmas is both a feast and a liturgical season. Each day of the Christmas season renews the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ

WEEK 1:   Light one candle and sit for a moment in silence. Christ our Light, Shine in our lives with hope and promise. Give us right vision so that we remain attentive to this holy season. Remind us to look for you in small acts of kindness and love. We await your coming with wonder. Amen

WEEK 2:   Light two candles and sit for a moment in silence. Christ our Hope, Illuminate our hearts with your grace. Enlarge our vision so that we recognize our kinship with all of the people of the world. Help us to give to others in ways that meet their deepest needs. We await your coming with gratitude. Amen.

WEEK 3: Light three candles and sit for a moment in silence. Christ our Joy, Brighten our homes with your presence. Clarify our vision so that we might see you in the people we cherish. Make every holiday activity an opportunity to spread your light and love. We await your coming with delight. Amen

WEEK 4: Light four candles and sit for a moment in silence. Christ our Peace, Glow brightly in each moment. Enlighten our vision so that we see beyond the trappings of the holidays. Relieve us, if just for a moment, of our worries and stress. We await your coming with serenity. Amen.

 

Have a joyful Advent Season!

Anne Atkin, Principal

 

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.

 

Principal Anne Atkin Bulletin, November 22, 2020

Let’s Spread Some Christmas Cheer

At Sacred Heart School, we feel the historical importance of staying open for business to serve the Hudson community. We are blessed to be able to offer high quality, Catholic education to our families and we are dedicated to building a school community that will withstand all adversity. This commitment to serve our parish families is a tradition for Sacred Heart. It is evident by our ability to work together and to persevere through any number of challenges. This year has been challenging for us. But I truly believe prayer and strength of virtue from our families has protected us from many things. We are strong and our strength has enabled us to be resilient.

God has been good to Sacred Heart School. We have averaged a 12% growth rate over the last three years and this year we grew at 17%. Our families are wonderful and we are blessed by each one of them.

Fundraising efforts that promote our mission of serving our community, while staying compliant to restrictions and safety guidelines, is difficult. We have an idea that we think will work. We are selling Christmas Baskets filled with local products.

Please consider supporting Sacred Heart School! We have two ways to support us this Christmas.

1 – Sponsor our Christmas Basket Sale. Become a sponsor by donating to Sacred Heart School. All sponsors over $100 will receive a Christmas Basket as a thank you!  Christmas Basket Sponsor Letter

2 – Purchase a $50 Christmas Basket for yourself or as a present. What a great and tasty way to spread some Christmas cheer while supporting your community!  Christmas Basket order form

The forms can be returned to the school or church office until December 11th.

Thank you so much for your generous support. We promise to be good stewards of your donation and to use every penny to serve our community and to bring our students closer to Christ.

On behalf of the staff at Sacred Heart School, have a blessed Thanksgiving. You are in our prayers!

God Bless,

Anne Atkin, principal

 

Sacred Heart School

Students are balanced: confident of mind, academics and Catholic Faith.

Serving the Community. Teaching our students to live and model the Catholic faith. Reflecting the unconditional love of Jesus.

Remaining structured with the purpose of graduating students who are prepared to persevere.