FROM THE PASTOR…..MY DEAR PARISH FAMILY, this week the Church throughout the United States will be celebrating CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK. The theme for the National Catholic annual celebration is CATHOLIC SCHOOLS: COMMUNITIES OF FAITH, KNOWLEDGE AND SERVICE. Catholic Schools offer academic excellence and faith-filled education for students nationwide. National test scores, high school graduation rates, attendance and other data show that Catholic schools frequently outperform schools in both the public and private sectors. While some Catholic schools are challenged by declining enrollments and school closures, the good news is that there is a strong demand and enthusiasm for Catholic Schools. Thirty-two percent of Catholic schools have waiting lists for admission and new schools are opening across the country. These facts are supported by our Catholic Schools – OLV and St. Joseph’s Catholic Academy. As schools are closing in the Altoona and Johnstown area, we have waiting lists, we have enthusiastic teachers and administrators, we have students who score high on standard tests, we have students who go on to college at a rate of 100% (St. Joe's statistic). We can be rightly proud of our Catholic tradition here in State College. I am very proud of our school. The children bring energy to the Church that keeps us young and alive. We have grown in numbers each year I have been here and I am looking forward to increased class sizes as we continue to go forward. There will be many activities throughout the week celebrating our school. If any family is interested in sending their child, please call the school office and make an appointment to take a tour or just to speak to someone. AND JUST ANOTHER REMINDER – NO CHILD WILL BE EXCLUDED FROM OUR SCHOOL DUE TO LACK OF FINANCES. I believe we are doing God’s work here and I am absolutely confident that He will make sure we have the financial resources to continue. May God continue to bless our schools, parish and all involved in providing our children with the best.
I want to THANK the following people and companies who graciously participated in the EITC SECOND CENTURY program that brings to OLV School tax deferred monies to help families in sending their children to our school. With their help, $118,934.00 was made available. I want to thank Andrew Charney and Scientific Systems; Gene Stocker and Stocker Chevrolet Subaru, Inc.; Bob Leahey and GM McCrossin; Joshua Montler and Lee Industries; Joe Thomas and the Ramada Inn; Mike Bevilacqua and Chad Dubin and Mammoth Restoration; John Arrington and Kish Bank; Jami Tomczuk and Susquehanna Bank; Donna Korcheski and Sovereign Bank; Raymond Ciampichini and Restek Corporation; Adam Fernsler and Fernsler Hutchinson Architecture; Tom Songer and Torron; Larry Savino and Northwest Savings Bank; Rob and Deborah Shearer and Sutherland Global Logistics. I am deeply grateful to the above mentioned names and companies who gave so much to our school, allowing us to flourish and grow. God bless you all!
This Wednesday, February 3rd is the MEMORIAL OF ST. BLASÉ. In keeping with tradition, throats will be blessed after the 7:00 and 9:00 AM Masses and during a Scripture Service at 7:00 PM.
ANOTHER REMINDER - Just a head’s up, I will be having another LENTEN ADULT EDUCATION CLASS this spring. Beginning on Monday, February 1 and for the following 6-7 weeks, we will take a look at some major themes found in St. Paul’s letters. We cannot cover his entire writings, but we will cover some of his theology as found in certain letters. Again, the class will run from 7:00 – 8:00 PM in the Activities Center.
HUMOR FOR THE WEEK - Farmers Fred and Luke were fishing on the side of the road. They made a sign saying "The End is Near! Turn yourself around now before it's too late," and showed it to each passing car. One driver that passed didn't appreciate the sign and shouted, "Leave us alone you religious nuts!" All of a sudden they heard a big splash. Fred grinned at Luke. "Do you think we should just put up a sign that says: 'Bridge Out' instead?"