Thursday, September 21, 2017

Sundays are for football and Jesus

On Saturday night my family and I attended 4:00 Mass.  We are now on our “football” schedule and getting to Mass on Saturday is part of that football routine versus attending Mass on Sunday…when all the games are played. 

Parents, Casey and I are just like you.  Our kids can be terrible during Mass. They are loud, they cry, and they can’t seem to sit still!  This past Saturday was no different for Casey and me.  Naps were cut short so we could make Mass by 4:00.  (Even with that, we showed up five minutes late!)  Preston was tired and crabby.  Cameron could not sit still or be quiet.  As parents we do everything we can to make them behave.  (Being the principal of the school makes me feel that the whole church is staring at me to see how the kids are behaving…or not behaving!)  Well, on Saturday, Casey and I were NOT parents of the year.  The Kindle came out for Cameron and I told Preston he could pick where we were going to eat for dinner…anything to get them to behave!  Thankfully we got through it, even with a few minutes to sit, listen, and pray. 

Most parents with young children have asked or at least wondered about these ideas.  “Why go to Mass?”  “It is too hard.”  “We have a million things to do this weekend.”  The list goes on.  You might have some of your own to add. 

Shame on me.  Even though I know better, I have said and done some of the things listed above.  What a terrible example for my family, for my students, and for my staff.  Good news though!  Each new week brings us a chance to start over again. 

Image result for sundays are for football and jesus
Recently, I found a list of reasons pointing out why we should attend Mass weekly.  I would like to share this list with my fellow parents so the next time we begin the path of finding reason for not going to church, we can stop, change our way of thinking, and choose the path that leads us to church. 

·         I owe God for all that He has given me. 

·         Besides talking to God, I need God to talk to me. 

·         I believe in Jesus.  Jesus told us to continue celebrating the Last Supper.  Mass is the Last Supper, the death and resurrection of Jesus.  Eucharist = Jesus, who gives us life. 

·         We ought to be a “live” member of a community.  Important to belong to a community…the body of believers. 

·         I want to be a contributing member.  We have to put something in if we expect to get something out. 

·         I have a body.  Mass is part of the human side of our faith.  Jesus said, “Do this…”

·         I have sinned.  God is forgiveness. 

·         I need other to pray well.

·         I need energy.  We need to be strengthened to live daily. 

·         The Mass helps me find the sacred in the ordinary. 

·         I was made to praise. 

Casey and I have made the commitment to stop using excuses.  We will hold each other accountable and we will set good examples for Preston and Cameron.  I know you will, too.  We are all in this together. 

Sundays are for football and Jesus! 

Monday, September 11, 2017

Heart of the School

About a week ago, Jeanne Lillig-Patterson, wife of Cerner founder Neal Patterson, passed away.  As I read about her and learned more about the work she did through Cerner and her foundation, First Hand, I saw the words "Heart of Cerner".  This is how Jeanne was known to her Cerner family and as I thought about those words, I began to think, who is the heart of St. Gabriel? 

Many people came to mind.  Ms. Terri is an angel.  Her title of "school sectary" does not do her job justice.  We all know that anything and everything that we need done, Ms. Terri is our go to person.  We are blessed by her presence.  Some might say it is the principal and while STG is in my heart, and will never leave it, I feel I am not the best example of the "heart of STG".  Others might say Fr. Joe.  He is our spiritual leader and supports STG is more ways than could even be named.  Still, I am pulled towards others. 

I believe the Heart of St. Gabriel is our youngest students, our two through four year olds.  The ones that can make each one of us smile.  The ones that make our middle school students say "how cute."  St. Gabriel has always been known in the Northland, for a strong early education program.  We have strong teachers and a community where everyone is part of a family.  We are so much more than a daycare, in fact I never use that word when talking about our ECLC.  We are an early childhood school for young students and we provide a strong foundation for their school years.  We teach more than numbers, shapes, colors, and letters.  We continue, with the help of their parents, to lay a foundation of our Catholic faith and what it means to live like Jesus.  Yes, when I think the Heart of St. Gabriel our youngest students come to mind.  The future of St. Gabriel lies in the hallway of our ECLC.  Those students will grow up to be part of youth program.  They will grow up attending Mass and becoming altar servers.  They will grow up and become our 8th grade class. 

In my opinion, they are the Heart of St. Gabriel.  They are the future of St. Gabriel.  They are part of us!  They are our students.  I am so proud of the school we have that educates students two years old through 8th grade.  What a powerful place, St. Gabriel.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Total Eclipse

Well that was amazing!  I had chills as I witnessed the eclipse but more so as I witnessed the students watching the eclipse.  All students followed directions perfectly and they were able to experience a once in a lifetime event.  As it got dark, the street lights came on, the birds went crazy, we all took a breath and were reminded of God's awesomeness!  What an experience this was and we can all say we were at St. Gabriel Catholic School when the 2017 Total Eclipse happened.  A remember when time for sure. 


Friday, August 18, 2017

Weekly Mass Time

One of my favorite parts about working at St. Gabriel is attending weekly mass as a learning community.  It is so special that we are able to learn together but most importantly pray together.  It was a joy to see our families and students participate in the Liturgy.  While it is a wonderful gift that our students receive, attending Mass weekly, it is a gift that should be received again each Sunday. 

I recently read an article that discussed wither or not parents should force their teens to go to Mass.  I have provided you a few paragraphs below but you may access the full article here.

"Children may not love school, homework, chores, or even vegetables but we make them go to school, do their homework, clean their rooms, and eat their veggies.  Healthy food makes for a sound body and an education makes a sound mind.  Church, therefore, nourishes the soul." 

"So when a parent asks me if they should require that their child go to Mass, my answer is always "absolutely."  I have heard the argument that if you force a child to go to church they will grow up hating it, yet we refuse to apply that same logic to other areas of our children's lives.  If we force a child to go to school they will grow up hating learning, said no parent ever."  Katrina Fernandez, August 17, 2017

Giving our students the gift of the Liturgy is priceless.  St. Gabriel Catholic School gives our students that gift every Friday.  I am so excited to see how our students and staff grow in their faith this year through that gift. 

See you Sunday at Mass! 
Mrs. Hogan 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Welcome Back!

What a joy it was, during this raining morning, to welcome back our students to St. Gabriel.  I love this time of the year.  I love the fresh start that comes with a new school year.  Students had a quick first day but routines and procedures were taught, new faces were introduced and classroom supplies were organized and put away. 

I enjoyed visiting each classroom and reminding our students of our school rules
Be Christian
Be Safe
Work Hard
During the course of the year, I will be a familiar face in classrooms as I observe the amazing learning experiences our teachers will give the students. 

 As a reminder, students K-8th grade must bring a lunch during the month of August.  Our school lunch menu will be sent home on Monday.  Lunches will begin September 5. 
On Monday, August 21, our students will have a wonderful learning experience as it is the Total Solar Eclipse.  If you wish for your child NOT PARTICIAPTE in the viewing (using ISO certified glasses) please send an email to Mrs. Hogan at . 

Also as you might have heard, this year our weekly all school mass will be on Fridays at 8:15.  We look forward to you sharing in our first one this Friday, August 18 at 8:15. 

Here we go, I am so glad you are here! 
Mrs. Hogan

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Back to School Time

Happy August St. Gabriel Families! 

Are you ready for the first day of school?  In 14 days, the halls will be full of students, the classrooms will be bright and fresh, and the click clack of my high heels will be heard!  What a quick summer this has been.  I have truly enjoyed being mom this summer and have taken time to recharge my batteries.  I have said it before, but as educators, we are blessed with 2 fresh starts a year, August and January! 

This email/blog will hold some basic information.  More will be given at Back to School Night and through classroom communications from your teacher.  If you have additional questions, please reach out to Terri or myself.  We are back in the office from 8:00-3:00 Monday-Thursday. 

·         I am happy to announce that Spanish will continued to be offered to our preschool-5th grade students and we will be adding middle school!  We will once again partner with The Language Project to provide Spanish education to our students and work with PTE to help offset the cost.  These classes will meet once a week and will be taught by teachers who work for the Language Project.  Once again, parent are asked to pay $11 for the workbook.  This fee is attached to the new One and Done.   

·         At Back to School Night you will be asked to pay a “One and Done” fee.  This fee will cover weekly publications, yearbook, Spanish Workbook and bus charge for school year field trips.  Our hope is that this will make your life easier, being able to write one check at one time!   

·         St. Gabriel is growing!  We are excited to welcome our new Kindergarten Class of 13 students!    

·         As stated in May, our new lunch program will begin after Labor Day.  With that, all families need to be prepared to send a COLD LUNCH with their students from August 17-September 1.  Milk will still be available for purchase.  There will be some growing pains associated with our new lunch program.  I ask for your patience and understanding as we move forward.  September lunch menu and ordering information will come home once school begins. 

·         Reminder!  Back to School Night Open House for ECLC and K-8th Grade will be August 14 from 5:30-7:00.  Kindergarten families are invited to join us in the library at 6:00 for a special session. 

·         During these times, any tuition or fess can be paid to Terri who will be in the school office.  Remember to bring any medication at this time.  Don’t forget your doctor’s note. 

·         First day of School is Wednesday, August 16 and it will be a Half Day for K-8th grade students and a normal day for our ECLC.  Angel Care will be provided. 

I am excited to welcome back familiar faces and new ones!  As one of my boys’ favorite characters say “See ya real soon!” 

Mrs. Hogan