Faith, excellence and service are the hallmarks of Catholic schools, and they were a particular emphasis of celebration this week at St. Columba School in Bloomsburg.
Catholic Schools Week activities for St. Columba’s students focused on this trifecta of values, particularly on Feb. 4, with a day of activities that centered on prayer, vocations and service.
Students began the day by forming and praying a living Rosary, candles in hand to shine the light of their faith as they formed a Rosary along the interior perimeter of the church. The Rosary was followed by a question-and-answer session with Msgr. Robert Lawrence, pastor, and Mr. Peter Morisco, school principal. Back in their classrooms, students participated in activities that focused on the lives of American saints, and planned a campaign of gratitude with cards for Msgr. Lawrence, second-grade teacher Sister Lydia, SSCM, and fourth-grade teacher, Sister Jean, IHM.
“Faith, excellence and service are the main reasons for celebrating Catholic Schools Week,” Morisco told The Catholic Witness. “Our students need to know their faith is a blessing, and our Sisters and Msgr. Lawrence, as well as the teaching of the Catholic faith through their daily lives from their dedicated teachers, have our students realizing the importance of understanding, practicing, and nurturing their Catholic faith.”
“This type of understanding of the various vocations will enlighten our students on what goes into the deciding factor in becoming a Sister and/or priest and that they send a special blessing throughout their educational and spiritual upbringing,” he said of the activities celebrating vocations.
Catholic Schools Week activities at St. Columba also included a letter-writing campaign to State Representatives affirming the value of human life, recognition of staff and faculty for their dedication to Catholic education, and school-wide assemblies.
Morisco said the hallmark of service is reflected in the school community working together, “from our administration, to the school office, to our faculty, and staff, to our parish office, and most importantly our school families in becoming our beacon of hope for our school and our children’s education. It’s the service of knowing that everyone must work together in order for this school to be successful.”
The northern-most school in the Diocese of Harrisburg, St. Columba School educates students in PreK-8 and offers programs in music, art and computer technology among its faith-based curriculum.
“St. Columba School has a long tradition of being able to educate each and every child that enters our doors and giving them the opportunity for academic success,” Morisco said. “Our school has been able to pay it forward by encouraging our students to volunteer their services, for example: donating over 2,000 socks to local nursing homes throughout Columbia County, donating snacks and drinks to our local health care workers, and donating our services in decorating our town tree at Christmas while spreading joy throughout the holiday season through our virtual Christmas Show and Literary magazine. These are just some examples of what makes St. Columba School so great!”
(Learn more about St. Columba School at www.saintcolumbaschool.org)
(Photos by Chris Heisey, The Catholic Witness.)
By Jen Reed, The Catholic Witness