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Leadership in Our Schools - A Message on Joy and Love from Father John Comiskey 

Father John Comiskey was the featured speaker at St. Clair Catholic's annual gathering, The Great Family of Our Church - Our Annual Day of Faith and Learning Together. Father Comiskey is Moderator of the Curia for the Diocese of London.

"We are extremely grateful and honoured that Father John made time available in his busy schedule to attend our two-day conference in the St. Clair district," says Dan Parr, Director of Education.  "Father's theme for the events was Joy in Life - Leadership in Catholic Education and he had a tremendous message for each of us who attended."

Father Comiskey quoted from a recent Papal encyclical, in which the Holy Father addressed this topic.  Pope Francis said, "... the Church must accompany with attention and care the weakest of her children, who show signs of a wounded and troubled love, by restoring in them hope and confidence, like the beacon of a lighthouse in a port, or a torch carried among the people to enlighten those who have lost their way or who are in the midst of a storm."

"This is an important lesson for each of us who serves the mission of Catholic education," says Mr. Parr.

The Great Family of Our Church is an annual celebration, which brings together representatives of the Catholic community, all of whom have an interest in Catholic education and its future.  Representatives include St. Clair Catholic trustees, senior administration, principals, staff, parents, students, union and association presidents, the Knights of Columbus, the Catholic Women's League, priests and parish partners.

In the photos (Above) Fr. John Comiskey.

(Below) (Back Row L-R) Scott Johnson, Superintendent of Education; Ray Power, Principal, Ursuline College; Megan Gooch, Student, UCC; Madison Herreweyers, Student, UCC; Lesli Jeffrey, CWL, Blessed Sacrament; Maxx McGlynn, Student, UCC; Cindy Boyd, Principal, St. Joseph Catholic School, Tilbury; (Front Row L-R) Fr. Jim Higgins, Episcopal Vicar, Kent Deanery; Fr. John Comiskey; Dan Parr, Director of Education; John Van Heck, Chair of the Board; Christine Canniff, Parent, Georges P. Vanier Catholic School; Stan Powell, Knights of Columbus, Corpus Christi Council.

(Bottom Photo) (Back Row L-R) Father Vince Guilikers, Pastor, Sacred Heart Parish, Sarnia; Linda Ward, Trustee; Chad Coene, President, OECTA Secondary; Mike Hendrycks, Knights of Columbus, District 40; Deacon Lyle Lalonge; Len Fera, Principal, St. Michael Catholic School, Bright's Grove.  (Front Row L-R) Michelle Parks, Trustee; Amy Janssens, Executive Superintendent - Corporate Services; Fr. John Comiskey; Dan Parr, Director of Education; Deacon John Lamers and Scott Johnson, Superintendent of Education.



Feb 14, 2017

Grade 1 Students From Sacred Heart (Sarnia) Celebrate 100th Day of School with a Tour of Sarnia and Visit to City Hall 

Students in Grade 1 at Sacred Heart Catholic School in Sarnia celebrated the 100th day of the school year by boarding a Sarnia Transit bus and touring the city; and they topped it off with a stop at Sarnia City Hall and a visit with Mayor Mike Bradley.

"The students planned the itinerary on their own," says Grade 1 Teacher Mary Jo Cocarell.  "We study 'community' as part of the Grade 1 social studies curriculum; so, they picked the spots in their community they wanted to see."

Ms. Cocarell and teacher Shannon Geary accompanied the students on a tour that included Canatara Park, Lake Chipican, Lake Huron, the Bluewater Bridge and St. Clair River, the big ships by the grain elevators, Sarnia Bay Marina, the Sarnia police and fire stations, Our Lady of Mercy Church, Bluewater Health and St. Patrick's Catholic High School, among other sites.

The highlight was a tour of city hall, with Mayor Mike Bradley acting as tour guide.  He greeted the students in the council chambers then accompanied them up a private staircase to his office on the second floor.

"Mayor Mike was very gracious," says Ms. Geary.  "The students asked lots of questions and were very enthusiastic.  They learned a lot and had a very fun day!"

In the photo above, Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley poses in the Council Chambers with three students from Grade 1 at Sacred Heart Catholic School, Sarnia.

Feb 14, 2017

St. Elizabeth Catholic School Students "Round-Up" Reading with Western-Style Literacy Day 

Students at St. Elizabeth Catholic School in Wallaceburg participated in a day to help raise awareness of the importance of reading.  Students wore western costumes, including cowboy hats and boots, as they set out to "round-up" reading for the day!

"This day was all about stressing the importance of literacy in our every day lives," says Liz Gibson, Principal of St. Elizabeth Catholic School.  "Our staff developed a number of activities, both in the classroom and in school-wide groups, that made for a fun day of reading and learning together!"

Guest readers were invited in, including Trustee Carol Bryden, who co-authored the children's book Yellow Bear Goes to Catholic School.  Other guest readers included Ursuline College Principal Ray Power, UCC Vice Principal Ed Freeburn, Superintendent of Education Laura Callaghan, members of the staff of Catholic Curriculum Services and parents.

Students also collected pledges to honour the reading goals they set a few weeks back and participated in reading activities in school families and with their reading buddies.

In a brand new tradition at St. Elizabeth, the Grade 8 class will purchase a legacy book for JK students entering the school in September.  They will write a short message to the future Charger graduates and sign it with the date.

"Families will be able build on many of these activities at home," says Mrs. Gibson.  "Special thanks to all of our staff members for making our reading round-up a success!"

In the photo above, Trustee Carol Bryden reads the children's book Yellow Bear Goes to Catholic School to students at St. Elizabeth Catholic School.

Feb 06, 2017
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