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Mrs. Hartnett writes,
There have been some days recently that I shouldn't answer the phone, read my email, or even get out of bed. On days like this, nothing seems to go right. People (including me) seem cranky and impatient, the highway is jammed with speeders and inconsiderate drivers, I can’t find my other favorite shoe, and no one will answer my questions. My coffee cup overturns in the car on the way to work and the new cell phone I just bought already needs a battery because the original one won’t hold a charge. Don’t they make products anymore that will last?? I forgot to take my coupons to the grocery store, and now I can’t use them. Where is the check I wrote for the dry cleaner? Who even knows… it’s probably with the American Express bill that I put somewhere, somewhere where I wouldn’t lose it.
Days like this are just such a burden. And on days like this, in addition to the proverbial kick in the pants, I need balance. I need perspective. I need a heart change, an attitude adjustment, and a patience injection. I need it to be a whole lot more about everyone else and a whole lot less about me. Absolutely yes, more gratitude and less attitude. I need to be grateful for all that I have. I need to remember places like Haiti and Afghanistan and Syria and Iraq and Rwanda and North Korea, where human struggle and suffering have become almost a way of life. Yes, I need to remember all of this. And when I need these things, when I need help, here is the prayer that I say:
Almighty God, Father of all,
Compassionate God, creator of all,
Bless every person I have ever met or will never meet,
Every face I have ever seen or will never see,
Every voice I have ever heard or will never hear,
Every smile I have ever welcomed or will never enjoy.
Bless every city, town, and street that I have known or will never know,
Bless every sight that I have ever beheld or will never behold,
Every sound that I have ever heard or will never hear,
Every object that I have ever touched or will never touch.
For in some mysterious way, all these have fashioned my life;
All that I am, all that I know, I have received from You.
Great and loving God, bless our world and everyone in it. Amen
Okay. NOW I can breathe. And yes, MAYBE, smile, just a little.
Our recent ice storms and threats of snow have inspired the Junior School students to wish fervently for another “snow day.” I have to smile when I hear the hope in their voices that maybe, just maybe, enough snow will fall at precisely the right moment to insure a day off of school. When I ask the boys what they would do with the unexpected gift of twenty-four hours, their response is invariably the same. *** Please see the end of the newsletter for their hands down favorite answer.
This on-going exchange of “what ifs” has caused me to think personally about wishing for things, about wanting things in my life that I envision I cannot live without, or at least want desperately. Blessed with a certain degree of wisdom born of age, adults can see that our wants and our desires have probably changed radically over the years: the snow day, the updated appliances, and the new car have been replaced by such thoughts as safety and security of family, success and welfare of students, and peace in a very troubled world.
One of the surest signs that God is at work in our lives is when we pray for others, for their safety, happiness, success, and well-being. When we place others in the hands of God, we become united to them in the brotherhood of Christ. When we work for the success and happiness of others, we also grow in our own happiness and sense of worth. When we see Christ in others, when we try to be as Christ for them, we help to create a world in which we can truly see the face of God.
WINTER TERM EXAMS
Listed below is the schedule for Form II and Form I winter term exams on Thursday, February 23. Please do note that the exams on this day begin earlier than a normal Thursday start time.
Government – 8:15 - 9:15
Science – 9:30 - 10:45
Geography - 8:15 - 9:15
As was mentioned in the last issue of News and Notes, the boys will be dismissed to go home immediately at the conclusion of their exam(s) on February 23. We do ask parents to pick up their sons as soon as possible at the conclusion of exams. The Junior School will close at 1:00 pm on Thursday, February 23. After that time, any boys still here will wait for rides in the lobby of the high school. Also, please be reminded that Friday, February 24, is a grading day and therefore, no classes are held in the School.
Boys who wish to stay for lunch on February 23 are welcome to do so, but we do ask, as a courtesy to the kitchen staff, that boys sign up if they intend to do so. The sign up sheet will be available before exams, February 15-21, and will be located on the door to Mrs. Lane's office.
Additional exam information:
- Junior School students who go to the high school after 1:00 on Thursday must remain in the lobby or the commons room of the high school building and are not allowed in the hallways, the library, or the bookstore, as some high school exams and classes will be in session.
- The dress code for exams is the same as a regular school day. All boys are expected to be in normal dress code.
- No student in the Junior School may leave early from an exam. Each student must stay in the exam room until the exam period is completed.
MASS WITH ARCHBISHOP CARLSON
On Thursday, February 2, Archbishop Robert J. Carlson with celebrate Mass here in the Abbey Church in honor of the sixtieth anniversary year of the founding of Saint Louis Priory School. This special Mass will be held in mid-morning and will affect the schedule of classes. Details of the morning schedule will be given to students but most importantly for parents, this day will begin at 8:00 am in the Junior School, which is earlier than the ordinary Thursday beginning time. The Mass will begin at 9:54 am in the Abbey Church, with two academic classes beforehand.
The following day, Friday, February 3, there will be a late start for students. First period class will begin at 8:51 am.
PRIORY GEOGRAPHY BEE WINNER
Congratulations to Form I student Wyatt Lewis (pictured below), who won this year’s Priory National Geographic Geography Bee. The next step for Wyatt is to take a multiple choice test, given to all state-wide local winners. The results of this test will then be submitted to the Missouri Department of Geography. If Wyatt scores among the top one hundred participants, he will advance to the state championship in Columbia, Missouri, in April. Good luck to Wyatt!
Priory Geography Bee winner Wyatt Lewis
Greetings Form I & II Parents!
We have a wonderful turn out from the Junior School for Xanadu! Be sure to bring your fully charged cell phone to the auction so you can bid on the wonderful silent auction items.
I look forward to seeing you at Xanadu!
Xanadu 2017 Chair
Adult Volunteers Needed to Work at Xanadu
Xanadu Night – Saturday, February 4, 2017
We still need adult volunteers for varying shifts the night of the auction. If you can work all night or a few hours, we would greatly appreciate your help. If you’re not buying a ticket to the auction, box dinners and bid numbers are available for our volunteers.
If you would like to volunteer, please email Mary Rhodes, email@example.com.
Xanadu Preview Party— Friday, February 3, 4:30 – 8:00 PM
This is a fabulous opportunity to preview all the items while you enjoy complimentary cocktails, appetizers and live music featuring Findawg, the Priory Dad Band. No RSVPs necessary. Casual attire. Peruse the fabulous items, get your mobile phone set up and start bidding! Come for a little, stay for a while.
Xanadu Sign Up Parties for Junior School Students & Parents
Look for these wonderful sign up parties at Xanadu that have something for Junior School students and parents:
Trivia Night for Forms I & II
Friday, March 31, 2017, 5:00 - 7:00 PM, Boys' Dining Hall
If your son loves trivia, or just having fun with his schoolmates, then this party is for him! Sign your son up to join his friends in Forms I and II for an exciting night of fun questions, good eats and prizes. Your son won't want to miss out on this popular party!
Junior School Gaga Ball Palooza & Pizza Party
Friday, April 7, 2017, 4:45 - 7:00 PM
Junior School Gaga Pit
Calling all Junior School boys. Are you ready to put your gaga ball skills to the test? This tournament party is for you! For the unversed, gaga ball is a fast-paced, high energy sport played in an octagonal pit, and known as the "kinder, gentler dodge ball." The name "gaga" comes from the Hebrew for "touch, touch." This party will be packed with fun and food. Some of the Form Chaplain monks will also be there for divine inspiration. This is a no-brainer event that every Junior School boy will enjoy.
Junior School Parents' Cocktail Party
Saturday, May 13, 2017, 7:00 PM
Rime and Georges Chahoud (Elias '18, Marc '21) invite all Junior School parents to join them for a beautiful spring evening at their home. Special guests include Fr. Maximilian '00 and Carrie & Phil Lane. The party promises to be a great evening of fun, conversation, cocktails and tasty appetizers.
“Audrey” the Xanadu Puppy Update
Meet "Audrey," our adorable Blenheim and white 11-week old Cavachon puppy. She is a cross between a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Bichon Frise. Cavachons are known for being affectionate, gentle, intelligent, low maintenance, and easy to train. Their small size (9-18" and 12-20 pounds) and playfulness make Cavachons an ideal dog for families. She is current with all her shots, is micro-chipped. Make this precious puppy a part of your family.
Please let your son’s grandparents know that Friday, April 7, is Priory Grandparents Day for the Junior School. The day begins with 8:15 a.m. Mass, followed by a continental breakfast in the Junior School, and then it’s Back To School for the grandparents – they will accompany their grandchild to two abbreviated classes! The day concludes at 11:00 am. This event takes place every other year in the Junior School, so your son will experience it only once while at Priory. Please submit addresses for grandparents' invitations to be mailed on our website.
CLOTHING DRIVE RECAP AND THANK YOU
I received a letter, actually addressed to all of you, from Catholic Family Services Southside, offering their profound and grateful thanks for the bounty of clothing, shoes, boots, and bedding which was contributed before Christmas as a part of our immigrant and refugee community outreach program. As I have seen for myself every single time the Priory family is asked for help, your response is overwhelming and generous. Truly, as always, you have seen Christ, and you have been Christ.
EXPLODING KITTENS REDUX
Here they are, at it again -
(Around the table, left to right: JP Schuster, Max Look, Grant Vineyard, Joseph Dixon, Michael Rashford, John Eisenbeis, Thomas Johnson, Marc Chahoud, Anthony Dixon; against the wall, left to right: Devin Kancherla, Patrick Zheng, Will Stoneman)
|Friday, Jan. 27
||7:00 - 9:30 pm
||Junior School Mixer
|Thursday, Feb. 2
||Mass with Archbishop Carlson - 8:00 school start
|Friday, Feb. 3
||No all-school Mass - late start beginning at 8:51
|Friday, Feb. 3
||Xanadu Preview Party in the Corley Gym
|Saturday, Feb. 4
|Monday, Feb. 6
||Faculty Professional Day - no classes held
|Friday, Feb. 10
||the next News and Notes
“There are scores of people waiting for someone just like you to come along; people who will appreciate your compassion, your encouragement, people who will need your unique talents. Someone who will live a happier life merely because you took the time to share what you had to give. Too often, we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. It’s overwhelming to consider the continuous opportunities there are to make our love felt.” Leo Buscaglia
Felice Leonardo "Leo" Buscaglia, Ph.D. (1924 –1998) was an author and motivational speaker and a professor in the Department of Special Education at the University of Southern California. After Navy service in World War II, Buscaglia entered the University of Southern California, where he earned three degrees before joining the faculty. Upon retirement, Buscaglia was named Professor at Large, one of only two such designations on campus at that time.
He gained fame on the USC campus through his non-credit course titled "Love 1A," which became the basis for his first book, titled simply LOVE. His dynamic speaking style was discovered by the Public Broadcasting System and his televised lectures earned great popularity in the 1980s. At one point his talks, always shown during fund raising periods, were the top earners of all PBS programs. This national exposure, coupled with the heartfelt storytelling style of his books, helped make all of his titles national best sellers; five were once simultaneously on the New York Times Best Sellers List.
Leo Buscaglia authored a number of New York Times bestselling inspirational books on love and human reticence, including The Fall of Freddie the Leaf; Bus 9 to Paradise; Living, Loving and Learning; Love; and My Father. In lectures he often protested in mock outrage at the comparative absence of writings on the subject, exclaiming "I have the copyright for love!!!" His books and numerous recorded and televised lectures, some of which became available to the general public through PBS, were extremely well received. He argued that social bonds are essential at transcending the stresses of everyday life and enriching it above the limitations of poverty as well as crossing communication gaps between generations. His public lecture audiences, which numbered in the thousands, nearly always spontaneously formed a line after his talks in order to get books signed, and more importantly, to hug this outgoing speaker.
Buscaglia worked actively to overcome social and emotional barriers that inhibited connections between people, from family to acquaintances to people with disabilities, the institutionalized, and elderly, to complete strangers, often making his own forwardness on the subject a topic of self-deprecating humor. The profundity of his subject, however, almost invariably struck a responsive chord for many in an area frequently regarded as deficient in their lives, and by 1998 his books had reached eighteen million copies in print in seventeen languages.
My most sincere and grateful thanks to all of you for all that you do for the boys, for the School, and for those in need. We are all so lucky, and so blessed.
Diana B. Hartnett
Director of the Junior School
Saint Louis Priory School