When I was in second grade, my teacher, Sister Mary Timothy, asked me one day if I could stay after school and help clean up the classroom. I was the kid who was going to become a priest. I was so good – when I was in school.
After the desks were tidied up and the floor swept, Sister Mary Timothy thanked me and told me I could go home. I walked to school and lived about a mile away (uphill both ways, of course). So, as I started to go home, I saw that the doors of the church were open. Since I was going to be a priest, I entered. I lay down on a bench and fell asleep.
I woke up to the sound of voices. One looked like an angel and the other looked like my mother. Sure enough, as I was sitting on the bench, Sister Mary Timothy, a policewoman, and my mother ran towards me. Sister Mary Timothy thanked God for being found. My mother grabbed me by the arm and, because we were in church, whispered all the ways I could be punished, including eternity with the devil. Sister Mary Timothy must have felt sorry for me because she brilliantly whispered, “Oh Mrs. Lachowitzer, think of Charles as being like Jesus. When Mary and Joseph thought he was lost, they found him in the Temple too!
My mother thanked Sister Mary Timothy and the police officer. Then my mother, because she wasn’t driving, walked me home. A mile. Climb. In both ways. My mother waited until we were in front of the church, so she wouldn’t have to whisper, then she shouted, “Don’t get any ideas in your head. Your parents are not Mary and Joseph and you are not Jesus!
My life in a Catholic school was a world of feast days, Church seasons, and the lives of saints. By the time I was in seventh grade, I was a police boy and because I was still the kid who was going to be a priest, I was also president of the altar boys. Server training and scheduling functions were in the midst of a major change from Latin to English. Nevertheless, I was a leader in a child’s world.
The adult world of the late 1960s was in chaos. There were protests, riots and assassinations. The Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondolet have ensured that our school is set in a different world – a world of order, discipline and learning – all intertwined with our Catholic faith and tradition.
To this day, the central feature of a Catholic school is a world of children where there is an environment conducive to excellence in education, the formation of conscience and the development of moral character.
For me, a Catholic school is symbolized by this scene where my mother, my teacher and a policeman joyfully find a child lost on a bench, although relieved of a fear that I did not know. Parents, teachers and leaders in our communities work together to keep our children safe by establishing rules that govern good behavior and create the most positive experience possible. Discipline is the making of disciples in a school that follows Jesus.
This is why a Catholic school does not content itself with putting values on posters to be hung on the walls of the classrooms. In a Catholic school, we proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ and through these truths our children learn what to value and why. Our children learn the virtues and are given the skills to live them.
Today, the adult world is still difficult. Of course, there is much good in our world, but in the unpredictable nature of national and global events, keeping our children in a world of children where they can discover and develop the gifts God has given them is the only way. sure to prepare them for an unknown future. With the grace of God, they will even be the ones who will help shape this future.
To all the staff of our school, my deepest gratitude to God. This is a season of heroes who persevere in service. I hear principals and teachers say that these are difficult days. If it was just a job, or even a career, some would have already left. But, as we approach National Catholic Schools Week, let us remember that working in a Catholic school is a calling, and all of our teachers, educational leaders and volunteers have our admiration, renewed support and many prayers.
Schools católicas: donde los niños learn that valorar y por qué
Category: Only Jesus