24 October, 2009

"No One Should Be without One"

Yesterday, our Campus Ministers met with the Elizabeth Coalition for the Homeless in preparation for their ministry to provide educational support to homeless children. Beatrice 's Place provides "each child with a one-to-one high school student tutor, who will assist the child with his/her homework, strengthening their academic skills, and mentor the child through troubled times." Our Senior Campus Ministers will also be reaching out to help their little sisters in need during the evening of November 5, while the parent(s) are attending a workshop. The facts reveal that children comprise nearly 1/2 of all the homeless in the United States. Along with the Coalition, we believe we are responsible to build a community of support, compassion and respect for our brothers and sisters in need. At Benedictine Academy, we can and are making a difference!

The Pearl of Great Price

"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it...", said Jesus according to the Gospel of Matthew. " You are the most precious pearl, a great treasure... I chose you..." This past Friday, our school community was most blessed to hear a beautiful meditation on this meaningful Scripture passage presented by our Convocation Pro-Life speaker for Rachel's Vineyard, Ms. Donna Caprario Augustine, Class of 1972 a Benedictine Academy Alumna. Ms. Augustine was an inspiration to all as she shared the truth about the value of human life (a hidden treasure), the depth of God's mercy, the freeing power of forgiveness, and the hope we have been given through our Lord Jesus Christ. She ended with her sending forth prayer upon the students:
"Go share your light. Walk closely with God and you will know Peace. We wish you Peace."
Ms. Augustine, on behalf of the Benedictine Academy, we wish that the Peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be also with you. Amen.

14 October, 2009

Healing Prayer Service

Last Evening, over one hundred family and friends attended a Healing Prayer Service at St. Walburga Monastery. Father Ignatius Okoroji, a Vocationist Priest, offered words of encouragement and comfort assuring us that the power of our Lord Jesus Christ would bring peace and forgiveness into our hearts. As we listened with the ear of our hearts, Sister Donna Jo, one of our Campus Ministers, silently pondered, " Which one of us could not use some type of healing from our Lord?"

Through the power of the Holy Spirit, mother, father, daughter, son, little infant, and Benedictine Sister came forward to receive the healing touch of Jesus through the laying of hands of Father Ignatius.
We were also blessed to have our dear brother, Father James Worth of St. James the Apostle Parish in Springfield, share the gift of his beautiful music to soothe our tired minds and bodies, as members of our Student Gospel Choir prayerfully sang Amazing Grace. This most wonderful service began and ended giving Glory to God.
We pray that the peace and love of Christ be with all of you this day.

09 October, 2009

Social Etiquette

It has been said that "People who grow up with a knowledge of manners have a lifelong advantage in job situations and relationships". David Brooks, New York Times Columnist recently wrote an article entitled, "In Search of Dignity". He quotes biographer, Richard Brookhiser, when he wrote, "These 110 Rules of Civility and Decent Behavior in Company and Conversation, which George Washington copied from a 16th century French Jesuit guidebook, were not just etiquette tips. They were designed to improve inner morals by shaping the outer person." This past week, the Peace & Justice Leadership Team had the unique privilege to attend a two day Etiquette Workshop on the beautiful bay in Southern New Jersey. "One needs a vocabulary to speak..." was one of the rules. I think we will all agree that rules of etiquette must be revitalized. At Benedictine Academy, we believe that we are preparing our students not only for college, but are forming them to become beautiful young women in our society.

The Living Rosary

October is the Month of the Holy Rosary. It is a tradition at Benedictine Academy for the entire school community to join together at St. Walburga Monastery to pray a Rosary for the special intentions of our families & friends, the needs of the world, our priests, and all religious. Ten students from each grade, along with ten staff members and Benedictine Sisters, formed the five decades of the Rosary. The Senior Campus Ministers prayed the Our Fathers in the language of their family heritage, as our Gospel Choir sang Salve Regina to introduce each Mystery of the Rosary. The Rosary was the favorite prayer of Pope John Paul II and Mother Teresa. It is our favorite prayer,too! Miracles can and do happen. Mountains can be moved... when we Pray the Rosary! Watch and See...

07 October, 2009

Feast of St. Francis

Happy Feast Day Sr.Donna Jo! The Peer Mentors (a/k/a the F.A.M.I.L.Y.) and the Freshmen Students celebrated the Feast Day of St. Francis with cake and good fellowship. St. Francis was a peacemaker and a person of great joy. He saw the beauty of God in all people and creation. Anyone who knows our Sr, Donna Jo, the Freshmen Religion Teacher and Co-Moderator of the Peer Mentors, can attest to the exuberant heart and deep love of God that she shares with Francis. "Lord, Make Me an Instrument of Your Peace... where there is doubt, let me bring faith."

02 October, 2009

Feast of the Guardian Angels

Angels are messengers of God's Love.
Today, we remembered and celebrated our Guardian Angels
as we prayed:

"Angel of God, My Guardian Dear

to whom His Love commits me here.

Ever this day, be at my side,

to light and guard, to rule and guide." Amen

The Senior Campus Ministers were spreading God's messages of love on the wings of angels throughout the halls. They randomly distributed little angel prayer cards and smarties candies, giving witness to our school theme - "Learn to Love and Love to Learn".

01 October, 2009

Feast of St. Therese'

Happy Feast Day! The Campus Ministers honored the Benedictine Sisters (and Franciscan Sister Donna Jo) with a beautiful rose in appreciation of their unceasing dedication, sacrifice, and deep love of the Lord. St. Therese' said her vocation was to do small things with great love. And although she died at an early age, she promised she would "spend her heaven doing good on earth." May we walk in her spirit and spread God's fragrances of kindness to everyone we meet.


The Peace & Justice Leadership Team headed for the Catskill Mountains for two days for an intense Team Building Leadership Program. They packed little and brought only their determination. Although it was a torrential downpour, they persevered as they climbed 45 foot walls and zip lined across the meadows. Hiking three miles, uphill in the muck, the Peace & Justice Team sang the Benedictine Academy Alma Mater with great joy. Fears were overcome by encouragement and support from each other. Their experiences will carry lasting memories of how they overcame obstacles and became strong!