Encouraging More than Simple Sacrifice for Lent

Beyond Sacrifice: Simple Ideas to Inspire Children to Do More than Give Up TV for LentLent is fast approaching! Have you already been considering what you want to give up? Will it be chocolate? Fast food? Or perhaps Pope Francis has inspired you to give up the gossip. Sacrifice is one of the hallmarks of the Lenten season, and it’s one part that our children seem to pick up on pretty quickly.

But there is another part to Lent, the part that calls on all of us to also give. And that may even be more difficult to teach our children to do because it involves adding something to your routine as opposed to taking something away. Between homework and sports and piano lessons and Scouts, the thought of having to add something may make you cringe. But trust us–by the time Easter rolls around, you’ll appreciate the lesson this will teach your children. It will add far more meaning to the season than merely having them give up TV for 40 days!

Here are a few ideas to inspire you. You can find more on our Lent and Easter Pinterest Board!

What are some of the ways you encourage your children to really embrace the spirit of Lent? Share with us on our Facebook page!

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The Annual Appeal (a.k.a. “Why should I give you more money?”)

AA15-logoWe are knee-deep in the Annual Appeal. By now, you’ve received the mailing and the emails, all of which express (we hope) just how important your contribution to the Annual Appeal is. And perhaps you have already made your donation.

But if you haven’t, and if you are wondering why we ask for a contribution from our families in addition to the tuition and fees that you already pay, allow us to take a moment to explain:

What is the Annual Appeal?

The Annual Appeal, also known as an Annual Fund, is comprised of contributions made directly to the school and which go towards off-setting our operating expenses. We have the most affordable tuition in the area at approximately $4950 per child (in comparison, consider that St. John’s Regional in Frederick costs $6600-$9000 for one child, depending on grade level), because we hold true to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton’s mission to make Catholic education accessible to all regardless of financial means. But because we try to keep tuition costs low, that means tuition alone does not cover the cost per pupil to run the school, which is $6642 per student per year. So we seek other means to close the gap.

Why is it so important for families to contribute?

We apply for many grants throughout the year that cover the cost of some of our programs and equipment. For example, it was a technology grant that we were awarded that made it possible to institute mobile laptop computing for the classrooms. One of the things that most foundations require as part of the application process is that we show significant participation in our Annual Appeal from our current families, faculty, and staff. They want to see that our community demonstrates a vested interest in the school. The amount donated is not important; but to be able to show 100% participation is. So even if it’s just a dollar that you can spare, please help us by participating.

I already gave money to the H.S.A. Doesn’t that count?

We are so thankful to our Home and School Association (H.S.A.) for their efforts in raising money for our school. The fundraisers they hold, including the Raffle and Vera Bradley Bingo, generate proceeds that are used to supplement field trips, purchase extra classroom materials, sponsor First Eucharist and Graduation celebrations, and pay for special programs throughout the year. Proceeds raised by the H.S.A. go directly to the school, but do not go towards our operating expenses. Without the H.S.A., our students wouldn’t have many of the fun and educational opportunities they do, and without the Annual Appeal, we would not have the funds we require to continue operating the school.

You’ve convinced me. But I lost my giving envelope. How do I make sure that my contribution counts?

We have several ways that you can make a gift to the Annual Appeal:

  • Send a check in to the school in an envelope marked “Annual Appeal”
  • Visit the following link: http://www.bit.ly/MSSGive¬†or click on the button below.
  • Click on the “Support MSS” tab on our website

If you wish, your donation can remain anonymous. However, if you do choose anonymity, please let Jennifer in the Advancement Office (jbuchheister(at)mothersetonschool.org) know that you made a contribution so we can count you towards our Family Participation goal.

Thank you for choosing Mother Seton School for your children, and thank you for the support you continue to give each year!

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Prayer to St. Medard, Patron Saint of Bad Weather

In light of snow and ice that has blanketed our roads and yards, and in anticipation of the next storm, we thought a prayer to Saint Medard, the Patron Saint of Bad Weather, would be most appropriate:

Saint Medard, we ask you to intercede for us during the storms of our lives as well as the storms in nature. Protect us and our homes. And Lord, help all the victims of snowstorms, hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and other natural disasters. Send in more helpers and multiply the supplies that are needed for their aid. You calmed the storm on the Sea of Galilee; deliver us from the storms that are raging around us now. Saint Medard, pray for us. Amen.

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(Source: Daily Prayers with the Saints for the New Millennium by Terry Ann Modica)