Novena for Pope Francis’s Visit to the United States

Join us in a novena of prayer for the safety of our beloved Pope and for the success of his visit.

Pope-Novena

Daily Intentions

Day One: For the safety of Pope Francis as he travels.

Day Two: For the people of the United States that we may be open to our Holy Father’s message of care and concern for the poor and vulnerable among us.

Day Three: For our government, that all elected officials in the United States use their positions to promote equal opportunity, justice and quality of life for all people.

Day Four: For the United Nations, that world leaders work together to create peace and to make “land, lodging and labor” available to all.

Day Five: For the World the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, that all participants be guided by the Holy Spirit and discern ways to support families amid the challenges of our day.

Day Six: For all those in Consecrated Life, that they truly be the presence of Christ on earth; for those who pray vocations, especially members of the Serra Club; for those considering or preparing for consecrated life, especially the novices who will meet with Pope Francis.

Day Seven: For our Criminal Justice System, that we work for an end to crime by creating prisons that offer not only punishment, but an opportunity to effect real change; that prisoners and those responsible for them be treated with respect in an environment that is safe for all.

Day Eight: For an end to human trafficking in all forms and for respect for immigrants everywhere.

Day Nine: For the Church throughout the world, especially the Church in the Unites States, that all bishops, priests, religious, and the lay faithful be open and attentive to the messages of the Holy Father and to the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

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Mother Seton School: A Community of Faith

praying-girls-massWe all know that Faith does not just happen. Somehow, usually in our childhood, our parents or perhaps our grandparents spoke to us often about God. They were wonderful role models for us and made sure we got to church as a family. If we were lucky, we went to a Catholic or Christian school where the teachings of Jesus Christ were incorporated into our daily lessons. We learned eventually that Faith was believing without seeing! We trusted, as we do today, that God knows all things and is with us every step of the way.

At Mother Seton School, we offer a Faith-filled environment for our students through our Catholic teachings and modeling what it means to be a Christian. From the early beginnings, Mother Seton taught children about the faith. Her example of her devotion to God will never go unnoticed! The fact that Mother Seton is the first American-born Saint and started the first Catholic free school for girls, St. Joseph’s Academy and Free School, here in Emmitsburg makes us ever more aware that our primary purpose is to carry on the teaching of the Faith to our children as she did. All of us who work at Mother Seton School partner with you, the parents and grandparents, in instilling a foundation of faith that will last a lifetime for our children.

In Vatican City, November 14, 2014, Pope Francis talked about our Faith as not mere words that we say but the example we give. Journalist Ann Schneible writes:

“Addressing the children who filled the chapel at the Santa Marta residence, Pope Francis said that – in an age dominated by images and cellphones – the faithful must rely on example, rather than words, to transmit the faith to young ones. As he looked out onto the young congregation comprised predominantly of children from a Roman parish, Pope Francis said it was as though he was looking at ‘a promise,’ and at ‘the world that will be.’ With this in mind, he asked: ‘what do we leave’ these children, who are our future. He then asked if the children are taught ‘to walk in love and in truth,’ or if we merely ‘teach them with words, while our lives take another direction?’ ‘It is our responsibility to look out for children!’ the Pope said, stressing that these ‘little plants’ cannot be ignored.”

gifts-mass“We all have a responsibility to give the best that we have “to children, and the best that we have is the faith,” the Pope said. However, this transformation of faith must be accompanied by example.

There is no question that teaching and giving example regarding our Faith is key in the formation of our children at Mother Seton School. We are fortunate that we can have activities that promote our Faith through daily morning prayer, religion classes, school Masses, promoting service projects to help others, living the Golden Rule (Luke 6:27),  and so on. All of this assists in creating a Christ-centered atmosphere, which is what our school is all about.

As noted in our Parent/Student Handbook, Mother Seton School affirms the truth that the goal of all Catholic education is salvation in Jesus Christ. Faculty and staff strive to clearly and fully transmit the message of the Gospel as reflected in the life of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton.

We all know that Faith does not just happen. Together we can continue to build on the gift of our legacy and live the core beliefs of our mission. Truly, the greatest gift we have as the New Year begins is our Faith.

Angel of God, My Guardian Dear

October is filled with many notable Feast Days. Today, October 2nd, is just such one. It is the Feast of the Guardian Angels.

Many of us learned this prayer when we were just babes, and our children probably recite it at bedtime. It’s a great little prayer to help ease your child’s anxiety over fear of the dark or storms, or bad dreams.guardian-angel-prayer

It’s also an important reminder of God’s love and how He sends his protectors to watch over us, to guide and nurture us. How many times have we come close to tragedy, only to inexplicably escape from harm? How often have we felt a word of caution advising us to “do this” or “don’t do that”? That’s our guardian angels watching over us. Pope Francis reminds us,

“How is my relationship with my guardian angel? Do I listen to him? Do I say good morning to him? Do I ask him to watch over me when I sleep? No one journeys alone and no one should think that they are alone.”

If it’s been a while since you’ve spoken with your Guardian Angel, today is the perfect day to say hello and thank you.

For ideas on how to celebrate this day, see Lacy’s post at Catholic Icing: 10 Ways to Celebrate

Grandparents Light the Way

seanmaz-lindamclaughlinGP13We have many traditions here at MSS. One of them is Grandparents Day, which is this Friday, September 26th. On this day each year, we open our doors to those special people who play a pivotal role in our students’ lives. Despite it being “Grandparents” Day, we intend for the day to include special relatives or friends who may not be grandparents, but who perhaps have taken a similar role in your family. Children can never have too many people to love them.

We couldn’t exist without our grandparents. Directly or indirectly, they influence who we are as people. Pope Francis says of grandparents:

“Like the Holy Family of Nazareth, every family is part of the history of a people; it cannot exist without the generations who have gone before it. Therefore, today we have grandparents and children. The children learn from their grandparents, from the previous generation.”

This annual event is our way of showing appreciation to grandparents and other influential people who have helped our students become the beautiful children of God that they are. It’s a token of our gratitude for their love and support.

We look forward to meeting these special people!

Our celebration of Grandparents Day will begin at 10 a.m. and end with an early dismissal at 12:30 p.m. for all grades, including Pre-K. If a grandparent will be taking a child home, please send a note in for your child’s teacher!

We join the March for Life in D.C. in Spirit

JesuswithChildren_1_mToday, on the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade, and the 41st annual March for Life is happening in Washington D.C. Despite the cold, snowy conditions, thousands of pro-life marchers have banded together to show their support for the unborn, to give a voice to the billions who do not have one. We offer up our prayers on behalf of the marchers and for those they are marching for, as we join them in spirit, and we encourage you to do the same.

You can follow the March on Twitter by clicking on the hashtag #whywemarch. Share your own prolife stories or prayers by using the #Seton4Life hashtag.