All Saints Regional Celebrates Its Community During Catholic Schools Week
At the start of the Mass that kicked off the culmination of Catholic Schools Week at St. Mary of the Pines Church, All Saints Regional student Cecilia Geiger made it clear what she loved about her school.
“I love being surrounded in a caring, compassionate and, most of all, faith-filled environment,” she said, reading from an essay prepared for the Mass led by Monsignor Ken Tuzeneu. “I love that even during math, science, literature or history classes, we can intertwine the Catholic faith.
“This is a wonderful thing, and as we celebrate Catholic Schools Week, I have begun to really understand the importance of Catholic education and the impact it has had on my life and the lives of others.”
From Jan. 29 through Feb. 4, Catholic schools across the country celebrated the theme “Communities of Faith, Knowledge and Service,” according to the National Catholic Education Association’s website. During Catholic Schools Week, many schools observed the annual celebration week with special Masses, open houses and other festivities and activities for students, staff, parishioners and community members.
All Saints was no different in that regard, packing in a whole menagerie of celebratory activities and fun for students and staff within each school day last week – starting the week on Monday, Jan. 30, with “Crazy Hat Day” and honoring various community service members and bus drivers, and ending on Friday, Feb. 3, with the eighth-grade class hosting its annual Spaghetti Dinner Dance in the evening.
“It was an awesome, fun-filled week,” said Principal Kathleen Blazewicz. “And it was great to see everybody step up to make it a big thing and have a lot of fun with it. This really brought us together as a community.”
Students Mackenzie Pritchard and Cheyenne Grillman certainly understand the relevance of the All Saints community.
“All Saints is the best school ever because we can celebrate our Catholic faith together as one,” said Pritchard, reading from her essay during the week-ending Mass.
“All Saints is a loving, caring family,” Grillman stated from essay. “At All Saints, from the moment you walk through the front door, we all treat other as equals.”
On Tuesday, Jan. 31, the pre-K through eighth-grade school hosted several 90-minute open house sessions, and the students had the opportunity to have lunch with their parish priests – Tuzeneu, as well as St. Francis of Assisi’s Rev. James Scullion, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton’s Rev. Pasquale A. Papalia, The Church of St. Pius X’s Rev. Richard Basznianin and St. Theresa’s Rev. K. Michael Lambeth.
During the Wednesday, Feb. 1, school day, students were invited to wear the craziest socks they could come up with as they engaged in team-building activities at all grade levels as well as enjoyed an assembly on robotics. On Thursday, Feb. 2, it was “Student Appreciation Day,” which included the opportunity for students to wear their favorite winter pajamas to school.
Following Friday’s morning Mass, the school celebrated its teachers and staff and finished the week with spaghetti, meatballs and some dancing. Tuzeneu took a few moments during the Mass to applaud the work of the entire All Saints community, particularly the students.
“The best thing we have at All Saints is Jesus,” he said. “We had a beautiful week full of activities to thank God for. And all of you make All Saints such a wonderful place to be.”
Prior to Tuzeneu’s closing remarks, more students were able to read their essays about why they loved All Saints so much. But one, in particular, seemed to summarize why celebrating Catholic Schools Week at All Saints was such a big deal.
“ASRCS has become my spiritual foundation,” read Harrison Fodor. “I’ve learned to respect my elders, be kind and compassionate and, most of all, forgiving of others. I’m blessed to be able to call All Saints Regional Catholic School my school.”
— David Biggy