Dear St. Edward the Confessor Parish School Families:
Being a Pastor and “Father” of a parish school is a joy and responsibility that is constantly on my mind, in my heart, and in my prayers. These most formative years of your child’s life are a once- in-a- lifetime unrepeatable opportunity for us to work together in partnership to give your child everything he or she needs to be the son or daughter that God, their Father, wants them to be.
While fostering academic excellence, self-discipline, and high moral standards, the heart of the parish school is the living person and presence of Jesus Christ and his church. Jesus is much more than a subject taught in religion class and church is more than a place we go on Sunday. Instead, Jesus is the beginning, the inspiration, the end and goal of everything we do here as a school and we are the church gathered together in his name.
Please know that the faculty, staff, and I are committed to living and practicing our Catholic faith with integrity and joy because, like you, we know that our children learn best from teachers who practice what they teach. I recognize and respect the fact that you parents are the primary teachers and spiritual leaders of your children. I know that you feel the joy and responsibility of being a parent, of being entrusted with the gift of faith, and entrusted with the care of God’s children.
I would like to ask that we work together in three ways this year. As a Catholic school, we are rooted – grounded - in prayer. We pray throughout the day, we teach our learners different ways of praying and we attend Mass each Friday as a parish school community. On your part, please model prayer in your home by praying daily as an individual, a couple, a family and being faithful to your promise to keep holy the Sabbath by bring your family to Mass each and every Sunday. At St. Edward we call this being a House of Prayer.
The fruit of prayer is service to those in need. Throughout the school year, your child will participate in various service projects in response to Jesus’ words: “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” (Mth 25:40). On your part, please keep the poor and needy close to you and your family because to do so is to keep Christ close to you, and to serve them is to serve Christ. At St. Edward we call this being a House of the Poor.
The third way that we as a Catholic school would like to partner with you is by living as stewards of God’s many gifts. A steward is a person who has been entrusted with something that belongs to someone else. One of the reasons there is so much joy around here is that we recognize that God has entrusted each of us with so many gifts. Creation, our life, our time, our talents, our possessions – all things belong to God but God didn’t keep them to himself– he has shared them with us. Even your children are not our own, they are God’s children and in his great love for us, he has entrusted their care to us. What a joy and responsibility! Let’s work together to instill a spirituality of stewardship by recognizing that everything we have and are belongs to God. May we receive these gifts with joy gratitude, cultivate them and share them generously with God, your church, school, and the poor.
Parents, I’m looking forward to partnering with you this year as a House of Prayer, a House of the Poor and joyful stewards of God’s many gifts.
Fr. Brendan Manson
Fr. Brendan's Back to School Night 2016-2017 Message: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3YCFGzVReIo&feature=youtu.be