The Sentinel – Volume 11, Issue 5

Living Stones on the Pathway to Heaven

Principal’s Message

This week I wish to share with you some difficult news regarding one of our school families.  Last week, Mrs. Donna Leonard (mother of Sylvia, a kindergarten student) was diagnosed with a stage four cancerous tumor in her liver.  As the origin of the cancer remains unconfirmed at this time, Mrs. Leonard anticipates receiving additional information this week as well as the details of a treatment plan which is expected to be very aggressive.

I have spoken with Mr. and Mrs. Leonard and assured them of the fact that they are not alone on this journey.  They will be surrounded by the love and kindness of the All Saints Catholic School community each step of the way.

At this time, there are two specific ways we can show our support for the Leonards: prayers and meals.  Mrs. Cathy Pell has graciously offered to coordinate an outreach of hospitality so that the Leonard Family may have dinners provided by members of our community on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.  Any families interested in helping to prepare food are invited to contact Mrs. Pell via email.  (cspell5@msn.com)  For planning purposes, the Leonards do not have any food allergies, but prefer foods that are not particularly spicy and that have not had any salt added. School families are also welcome to donate gift cards to local restaurants in support of this project. Donations of both meals and gift cards can be delivered to the front office of the school.

As additional information is received regarding Mrs. Leonards’ status, I will share the details via the weekly newsletter.  In the meantime, let us unite our hearts in prayer on behalf of Mrs. Leonard and her family.

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Central to the mission of Catholic education is a commitment to the formation of the whole person within the light of the teachings of the Gospel.  At All Saints our effort to educate all dimensions of the child ~ spiritual, intellectual, social, and emotional, has been an essential and consistent element of our mission.

As a Catholic school, All Saints also affirms the role of parents as the primary educators of their children and we are privileged to have the opportunity to work with you as partners in this regard. During the past several years, we have grown increasingly concerned about the many confusing messages that society as a whole, and the media in particular, place before the young people of today, particularly in regards to the topic of human sexuality.  In this day and age it is increasingly important that we insure that the children learn the beautiful teachings of the Church on this topic and that they fully realize and understand the gift of human sexuality within this framework.  Not to share this information with the children leaves them unprepared for the world they face and the many choices that await them in the years ahead.

Over the course of the past several years All Saints Catholic School has implemented a middle school family life curriculum that supports our goal of educating the whole child.  The program is coordinated by the Diocesan Director of Youth Ministry, Mr. Kevin Bohli, and is tailored to the specific needs of each school community. The program consists of a parent presentation during which Mr. Bohli provides an outline of his presentations as well as resources for parents.  Following this presentation, he and an associate, Mrs. Celia Fruchterman, will meet with the students for three one hour lessons designed to provide the children with an understanding of the Church’s teachings on the topic of human sexuality.

One of the advantages of this program is the involvement of outside professionals.  In addition to their expertise and experience, Mr. Bohli and Mrs. Fruchterman are unfamiliar to the students, which may put the students at greater ease in asking questions and discussing this topic.  A second advantage of this program is that it is designed to take place in a single-sex setting; Mr. Bohli will address the boys and Mrs. Fruchterman will speak with the girls.  Finally, in accordance with diocesan policy, this program is designed as an opt-in opportunity for parents and students. Accommodations will be made for those children whose parents prefer that they not participate in the program.

Parents of middle school students are invited to a presentation to be held on Thursday, October 7thbeginning at 7:00 p.m. in the Parish Activities Center.  As this is such a very important topic related to the development of your child, I ask that at least one parent from each family new to this program be present at the meeting.

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Lock-Down Drill ~ Tomorrow (10:00 a.m.)

Six years ago our school Crisis Management Team implemented quarterly lock-down drills to familiarize students and staff with our security response plan.  Each drill is clearly introduced as a practice with teachers and staff providing age-appropriate instructions to the students.  The first drill for the year will occur on Thursday, September 30th at 10:00 a.m. (Please note: This drill has been scheduled for several weeks and is not in response to any concerns specific to All Saints.  Rather, it is another exercise by which we maintain a state of preparedness should the need ever arise to secure the facility and safeguard the children.) 

Help Wanted at the Priest BBQ

The Cafeteria Staff is still in need of at least 2 additional volunteers to help in the kitchen in the morning from 9:30 to 11:30.  If you can volunteer your time, please call the cafeteria at 703-368-4400 ext. 211.

PTO Family Bingo Night

Mark your calendar for the All Saints Catholic School PTO Family Bingo Night on Saturday, October 15th at 5:00 p.m.   The event will be held at the Knights of Columbus Hall.  Please click on the flyer under links in this week’s newsletter for details.

Upcoming Events

  • Lock-Down Drill ~ Thursday, September 30th (10:00 a.m.)
  • Priests’ Barbecue ~ Friday, October 1st (11:15 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.)
  • PTO Bingo Night ~ RESCHEDULED ~ October 16th (Knights’ Hall/5:00 p.m.)
  • Bishop O’Connell High School presentation to 8th Grade ~ Monday, October 4th
  • Paul VI High School presentation to 8th Grade ~ Tuesday, October 5th
  • PTO Executive Board Meeting ~ Tuesday, October 5th (7:00 p.m.)
  • Middle School Parent Presentation ~ The Gift of Human Sexuality Program ~ Thursday, October 7th (Parish Activities Center/7:00 p.m.)

 

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