St. John's offers religious education for children in grades 1-8 on Sunday mornings from 9-10AM in the parish school building.
Religious education registration forms for the 2012-13 school year can be found on tables at the Church entrances. Please read the materials in the packet and return registration forms to the rectory office as soon as possible.
For more information, contact Sr. Roberta Harding at 301-681-7634.
Announcements and thanks from Colleen Zarzecki...
It was a wonderful week at St. John the Evangelist VBS. We learned so much about how we can win the world for Jesus and how we can bring Him to those who need the love of God in this world. We learned about some amazing models of faith -- the saints Isaac Jogues, Francis Solano, Rose Duchesne, Damien of Molokai, and Juan Diego. We also learned by observation about other amazing models of faith -- the parents who volunteered, those who worked behind the scenes to make sure it would be a wonderful week, the youth volunteers, and the parents who decided it was important that their children spend this time during the summer to learn more about their faith and who ensured that their children got to VBS every morning, water bottles in hand.
Msgr. Pennington was very sorry that he wasn't been able to be a presence at VBS. He is undergoing daily treatments in Baltimore in follow-up to his recent cancer surgery. He asked how VBS was going every day, and was really happy to receive a t-shirt. Please continue to pray for his complete healing and a peaceful spirit during this difficult time.
We also have to offer some particular thanks:
First, Mrs. Dukes and Ms. Cyr asked me to specifically mention their helpers in the Kindergarten room-- Emily, Kimberly, Ellie, and Lauren. These young ladies have gone above and beyond the call of duty, have taken the initiative throughout the week, and have really been dynamic helpers in the classroom. We really appreciate them, and all of our youth helpers.
Speaking of youth helpers, a HUGE thank you goes out to Mrs. McFadden, who VOLUNTEERED to both manage the youth helpers and run the nursery -- two very difficult jobs. Her advice throughout the planning process and through the week have been invaluable, and so has her encouragement and joyfulness.
We also want to thank all of our teachers -- Mrs. Dukes and Ms Cyr in Kindergarten, with their beautiful mission building that they decorated all week, Ms. Yong, who did a beautiful job with the first graders, Mrs. Peterson and Mrs. Culkin who shared responsibility for second grade, and Mrs. Scharnberger, who returned from a fabulous vacation late on Sunday night and jumped right into VBS the next day, and Mrs. Garvey, who wore a second hat as a teacher this week in addition to everything else. We also had great people running our “specials” -- Mrs. James did a beautiful job on Games and was very helpful in many other ways as well, both in the planning stages and through the week, Ms. Chan and Mr. Mattison worked so diligently with the children to help them learn the music, Mrs. Comello helped the children make some truly stunning crafts this week, and Mrs. Peterson did science with them on Tuesday and Thursday, and Mrs Perez and Mrs. Love who revived their flagging souls and bodies with a smile and a snack all week. We also had great helpers in the Admin office, including Mrs. Salvado, Mrs. Schaffer, and Mrs. Love, and our youth helpers, Sophie and Garrett.
Mrs. Garvey and Ms. Yong were essential in the planning and execution of VBS. Mrs. Garvey did most of the preparation work for the week and was an unflagging helpful and cheerful spirit, despite 100 degree weather, work, children, and pregnancy! Ms. Yong helped so much in our planning and designed and ordered our beautiful t-shirts. Sr. Roberta has been so helpful and supportive throughout the whole preparation process and through the week, Carol Kinnahan in the rectory office also deserves great thanks, as does Mrs. Collela who allowed us to invade her quiet summer workspace and turn it topsy turvy. We would also like to give a great shout out to Mr. Pedro and Mr. Eduardo who worked so cheerfully to do everything we asked of them. Thank you so much!
Please take a few minutes to fill out the survey about VBS located at:
Enjoy the slideshow from the closing assembly:
Day 3 - Mission. Baptism. Eucharist.
So far this week, these are the themes that our children have been learning about here at VBS. Through songs, stories, skits, games, and classroom activities, they have been learning these fundamentals of our Catholic faith.
Yesterday, we cornered some of our first grade Lamplighters to ask them about what they had learned.
Adam K. thought that St. Isaac Jogues and St. Francis Solano were “brave” to be able to bring Jesus to foreign lands.
Brisa thought that she would like to try to imitate these great saints.
Ryan K. told us that he thought these saints explored new territories for Jesus “because they are brave and wanted to be nice to Jesus.”
Norah F. told us that we got to be part of the family of God by being baptized.
We also talked to other students.
Alex O., a second grade Blazer, thought that Zeal for Souls (a concept we talked about a lot onMonday and Tuesday) meant that someone “wants a lot of souls to know Jesus” and that our saints were “people who helped others and who were missionaries who listened to God.”
Charlotte Z, a third grade Grace, said that she would imitate St. Isaac Jogues St. Francis Solano, and St. Rose Duchesne in this way: “I would pray and I would teach people about Jesus.
Caroline Z. a Kindergarten Spark, thought she would imitate St. Rose Duchesne by praying every night and by not going to bed (Uh. Oh. I think she took the wrong lesson from today’s skit).
The Eucharist: The source and summit of Christian Life
Today at VBS, the children learned about St. Rose Philippine Duchesne, who brought her love of the Eucharist to the Native American peoples of Missouri in the early part of the 19th century. They learned that St. Rose had a great devotion to the Real Presence in the Eucharist and that she drew much strength from Eucharistic Adoration. Your child may have paid a visit to Our Lady’s Chapel to see the tabernacle and to visit Jesus in the Eucharist. We also brought a chalice and paten used for Holy Communion around to all the classrooms and described what they were made of and why these materials were used. We told the children that the chalice and paten were made of precious metals, silver and gold, because they held the most Precious thing we have – the Body and Blood of Christ. We also showed them and explained the use of the pall (the cloth that covers the paten to protect the Host) and the purificator (the napkin-like cloth that the Eucharistic Ministers use to wipe the rim of the chalice and that the priest uses the wipe out the chalice at the end of Holy Communion). We also told the children about the special sink in the sacristy where the Eucharistic Ministers wash the Precious Blood from the purificator and its drain that goes directly into the ground, rather than into the sewer system, so that the Precious Blood is treated reverently by being buried rather that thrown away.
Tonight at dinner, you might want to ask your children what they learned about the Eucharist and remind them that your whole family can have a chalice and paten in your home for a whole week if you participate in our parish prayer for priestly vocations. You might be surprised at some of their questions and some of their take-aways.
Tomorrow we’ll talk about personal vocations and on Friday we will talk about Our Blessed Mother, Mary, and how she is an example of how to be a missionary.
In the Summa Theologica, St. Thomas Aquinas tells us that zeal is a “necessary effect of being in love,” and that it is the “vehement movement of one who loves to [secure] the object of his love,” (Summa Theologica, I-II:28:4). In other words, when we have zeal, we love intensely and seek to be loved in return. We do things to show our love. This week at VBS, our children will learn about the virtue of Zeal for Souls by learning more about holy men and women who showed this zeal as they explored uncharted territories or ministered to the lost and forsaken. These men and women point the way for our children: St. Isaac Jogues, apostle to the Natives of Canada and New York, St. Francis Solano, who ministered to Africans destined for the slave markets of South America, St. Rose Duchense, who brought her love of the Eucharist to the Native peoples of North America, St. Damien of Molokai, who ministered to abandoned lepers, and St. Juan Diego, who received the tilma of Our Lady of Guadalupe and thus opened the way for millions of conversions among the Aztecs.
Through recounting of these examples and through stories, games, and songs, we will help our children think about the ways in which they are missionaries in their own lives and help them understand that they too have a mission to share the love of Jesus with the world. We’ll also contribute to present-day mission work by collecting loose change and wrapped toothbrushes for the Helping Hands Medical Missions (www.hhmm.org), a Texas-based Catholic organization that provides free medical care and spiritual companionship to the poor in locations throughout the world. HHMM 2012 mission locations are in Brazil, Mexico, El Salvador, the Philippines, Guatemala, and Ghana.
Please check back during the week to see our progress and to hear from some of our participants about how K4J is working in their lives.