…and even in NYC, it is beautiful!!
Being in the city and passing through busy areas, I never imagined the fall colors would be as beautiful as they are! When I get off the train every day in Brooklyn and begin my walk to school, I pass a park on my right, along with trees down my particular sidewalk, and thank God for the beauty around!! It definitely makes me feel at home with all the trees surrounding. .
The past few weeks have definitely been exciting, to say the least. Since last writing, I have planned a special mass for the bishop of Brooklyn to attend, a prayer service for our seniors, led 2 seniors retreats, volunteered with the students at our first service project, and attended a teacher conference!!
To begin, bishop’s mass: at the beginning of the school year, my boss and I found out the bishop was coming to school. Needless to say, it was a big deal, and the first month of school was dedicated to creating the special mass. All in all, it went very well, and the students’ behavior far exceeded my expectation. We also had a special assembly for the juniors/seniors, and then another special group of 30 young men who met with the bishop to talk about vocations. Completing that mass and assembly lifted a huge weight off the shoulders of our office and allowed us to continue planning for the year.
Next on the list was a prayer service: every year, it is a tradition for the seniors to receive a special “Senior Pin.” With this pin comes a short assembly and prayer service, and you guessed it, Campus Ministry helped to plan it. Being in the same week as the Bishop’s Mass, it came down to crunch time for planning this prayer service, but we heard nothing but positive feedback from all the faculty/staff/administration, plus students how nice the service was; definitely a spirit booster!! As a faculty member, I also received a pin from the seniors saying “thank you for being here!” (or something along those lines).
After the prayer service comes Senior Retreats: as part of Campus Ministry, like I’ve mentioned before, we are responsible for planning the numerous day retreats for all our grade levels. We are beginning the year with our Senior class (Class of 2012). The theme revolves around looking towards the future and all that comes with it. It is definitely emotional, but the students have been receptive to the activities, without causing too many problems. My favorite part of the retreat is at the end of the day when we watch a movie; not because I enjoy not having to talk with students, but because the movie is awesome. We watch Pay It Forward. Though I have now seen the movie probably about 7-8 times, I still get choked up and shed a tear at the end. The theme, the characters, the whole movie is awesome, and definitely a recommendation towards anyone who has not seen it.
Second to last, service projects are very important to Loughlinites. For our first service project, we volunteered across the street at Queen of All Saints Health Fair. Our students helped set-up the health fair booths and then got to spend the day walking around, scrounging up all the free stuff they could find. A quick math break; 12 high school students + a bunch of free stuff = lots of empty tables once the high school kids pass through! At the end of the day, the students were awesome, the church staff was appreciative, and I went home to relax and nap!
Lastly, I got to attend my first teacher conference; Brother Luke Salm, FSC Religious Education Workshop. The 2 day workshop brought together campus ministers and theology teachers from mainly the East Coast district but also some others from across the country. A time to begin networking, as well as learn some valuable information for the coming service year, as well as years down the road for when I become a real “big boy” with my job! .
It has definitely been busy with school and such, but I seriously would not ask for anything else. I love it!!
I wish I had an update for you on the girl who I helped with her homework, and the result of her quiz in class; she has not come back to find me yet and report, so I now begin the outreach towards her, to let her know that I do really care about how she is doing.
Also, an update on my fundraising…I REACHED MY GOAL AND AM STILL GOING!! There are just under three weeks left until I run in my half-marathon, so definitely time to still donate towards the awesome cause!! Any bit counts towards the larger goal of $52,000!! Thanks to all who helped support so far!!