Catholic schools across the country marked Catholic Schools Week Jan. 31-Feb. 6. Local highlights from the week are included on these pages — find more at thecatholicsun.com, facebook.com/SyracuseCatholicSchools, and youtube.com/syrdio. Does your school have a highlight to share? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Faith, excellence, and service celebrated at Seton
By Deacon Gary DiLallo | Special to the Catholic Sun
A high school gymnasium is normally very active, with running, jumping, shouting, cheering, and whistles blowing. But on Feb. 3, the mood in Seton Catholic Central’s gym in Binghamton was subdued, quiet, and peaceful as 68 11th- and 12th-graders walked to their seats and bleachers for Mass, kicking off Catholic Schools Week. The Mass was also livestreamed to 300 students in their classrooms.
Father Kenneth Kirkman, pastor of St. Anthony’s and St. Joseph’s parishes in Endicott, celebrated the Mass, which he dedicated to the late Father Thomas Hobbes, an avid supporter of Seton who died Jan. 26.
Father Kirkman said before Mass that he really enjoys coming here to be with the students. His homily focused on two takeaways as he challenged the students, “Don’t sell anyone short. Learn to meet people where they are at.” He also said, “Catholic education provides a Christlike environment and each of you has the opportunity to see Christ in everyone.”
Principal Matthew Martinkovic said, “These are definitely trying times, but we refuse to allow COVID to run our lives. We might have to do things differently, but it is the atmosphere here that we follow Christ through Catholic education and help our students to be better people.”
Deacon Gary DiLallo is the Business Administrator for Most Holy Rosary Church in Maine, Broome County.
Immaculate Conception School in Fayetteville began Catholic Schools Week with “Celebrating Your Parish Day” Jan. 31. Two sixth-grade students attended the 9 a.m. Mass; they thanked the parishioners and talked about Catholic Schools Week and how special IC School is to them.
On Feb. 4, the sixth-graders prepared and offered the readings at the “Feast of the Celebration of the Lord” Mass, celebrated by Father Thomas Ryan and Father Philip Hearn. Principal Nancy Ferrarone and students and faculty from grades 4 to 6 attended. Three violin students and two cello students, accompanied by their teacher on the piano, provided the music as prelude to the Mass (pictured at right).
The weeklong CSW celebration also included crazy hat day and crazy sock day, a schoolwide community service on pajama Friday to benefit Paige’s Butterfly Run, creating thank-you cards and posters for the fire and police departments and hospital workers, and a virtual visit from Father Zach Miller to talk about vocations. (Photo courtesy Caroline N. Agor-Calimlim)
Pre-K through sixth-grade students at St. Rose of Lima School in North Syracuse made cards for the retired sisters at the Franciscan Villa and the retired priests at the Nottingham to thank them and to let them know they are thinking of them and praying for them. (Photos courtesy Mary Crysler)
Bishop Douglas J. Lucia celebrated Mass with the students of St. Mary’s Academy in Baldwinsville Feb. 5. (Photo courtesy Gabby Gleason)
Bishop Douglas J. Lucia visited Most Holy Rosary School in Syracuse Feb. 4, where he gave a virtual talk on vocations to the students. (Sun photos | Chuck Wainwright)
During Catholic Schools Week, Notre Dame Elementary School in Utica reached out to help the Rescue Mission. The children brought in T-shirts, socks, and a variety of personal-care items to be given to the Rescue Mission. On Feb. 4, the school celebrated vocations, and students were encouraged to dress as a religious vocation or what they want to be when they grow up (pictured above). (Photos courtesy Sondra Nassar)