Catholic-Schools-Week Homily

Why would we keep Catholic Schools Week at the end of January? After all, the school year certainly offers other, warmer weeks—when we might have a picnic, or a Catholic-Schools-Week cookout or pool party?

Well, there’s a reason…

Angela Merici holy cardWho’s the heavenly patron of all Catholic schools? St…. His feastday falls on January… (28th)

But: St. Thomas Aquinas is not the only heavenly patron of Catholic education with a feastday during the final week of January.

Whose feastday falls on January 31? Right! St. John Bosco, who went out into the streets to find boys who needed an education.

And whose feastday do we keep today, on the 475th anniversary of her holy death? St. Angela Merici. She went out into the streets to find girls who needed an education.

All three heavenly patrons of Catholic Schools Week believed that a good education starts with one thing, namely Jesus Christ.

In our gospel reading at Holy Mass, we hear the Lord Jesus insist that doing the will of God is the most important thing. And in the first reading, we hear St. Paul declare: The will of God is for us to be consecrated through Jesus’ offering of His Body for us.

So we can draw a straight line: Christ ———-> the saints of Catholic education ———-> us celebrating school Mass together.

When it’s cold and blustery outside during Catholic Schools Week, that reminds us that we belong in school. We belong inside, learning about Christ, and about the wonderful things that He has designed, and made, and made beautiful.

At Roanoke Catholic School, we count ourselves thoroughly blessed to have: 1. the constant help of God, 2. the grace of the sacraments, 3. the intercession of our patron saints, and 4. the love and help that we give each other.

We belong together in school. God Himself has united us in the truly worthwhile endeavor of seeking His Kingdom and growing into the people that He made us to be.

Another All-Star Week

rod-laver-arena

Here in the mid-Atlantic, we are enjoying a winter wonderland. For a little perspective, let’s keep this in mind: Down in Melbourne it is 100 degrees on the court for the Australian Open. Novak Djokovic had to forfeit his semi-final match because of heat exhaustion.

Statue of St. Angela Merici in St. Peter's Basilica
Statue of St. Angela Merici in St. Peter's Basilica
Perhaps you remember: Back in early October, we highlighted an ecclesiastical “All-Star Week“. Well, we are in the middle of another one…

On Saturday, we kept the memorial of St. Francis de Sales, heroic bishop, consummate gentleman, and author of a very good book (a few very good books, in fact). Then on Sunday, we kept the feast of St. Paul’s conversion. Yesterday we kept the memorial of St. Paul’s most prominent disciples, Sts. Timothy and Titus.

These apostolic men alone could out-hustle any competitors. But there is more!

Today, we keep the memorial of St. Angela Merici, foundress of the Ursulines. St. Angela is the female equivalent of St. Ignatius Loyola, as Dr. Ann White pointed out in the Jan/Feb 1999 issue of “Review for Religious.”

St. John Bosco blessing some young men
St. John Bosco blessing some young men
Tomorrow, we keep the memorial of the Common Doctor, the Angelic Doctor, the Master of the Schools, the Patron of learning, the greatest genius of all time–St. Thomas Aquinas!

Then, on Saturday, we keep the memorial of St. John Bosco, a.k.a. Don Bosco.

All the other All-Star teams–N.H.L., Pro Bowl, N.B.A., you name it…they all take a back seat to the Church’s all-star team this week.