Mercy Peek & Ponder by Mr. McGrath

Volume II Issue 16 Sunday, December 20, 2015

Our Lady of Mercy Regional Catholic School

Through the intercession of Our Lady of Mercy, we commit ourselves to living the Good News of Jesus through Works of Mercy. Our rigorous academic program unleashes creative energy for the pursuit of knowledge and nurtures a hope-filled vision for Catholic leadership. We live out our relationship with God by respecting the dignity of others and providing service to the global community that fosters unity, understanding, and compassion.

Principal's Christmas Messaag

I would like to wish all of our OLM parents, students and friends a safe, happy and holy Christmas and holiday season.

I would like to acknowledge the contribution of our faculty, staff, parents and students to OLM this year.

Walt Disney once said ‘"You can dream, create, design and build the most wonderful ideas in the world, but it requires people to make the dream a reality."This is certainly the case as a principal. The reality is that the learning experiences and projects that have taken place this year could not have happened without a great deal of commitment and support from the faculty, staff, parents and students.

This year, as a school we welcomed the Board of Specified Jurisdiction, the Next Generation science standards, and the new Tier Three Reading Intervention Program . The faculty and staff is to be applauded for the way in which they have embraced the rewards and challenges of change and have embraced it with positivity and enthusiasm. I am privileged to be a part of a school with highly capable and committed teachers and staff. One of the critical factors of any successful school is the faculty and staff. There has never been a time when being a teacher has been more demanding or challenging. To our teachers and staff, thank-you for your energy, passion and enthusiasm. What a privilege to be able to witness the joy that comes with the understanding or satisfaction of a problem solved, or the wonder of living the mission of OLM.

Our teachers are privileged each day to participate in their student’s academic journey. They recognize and applaud just how hard their students try. They celebrate their students’ achievements whether they be great or small and they share with pride the progress their students make with their learning. Not a week goes by that we are not as a school celebrating the successes of our students, whether these successes be in the classroom, playing an instrument, providing service to the community, ......

As a school community we also treasure the opportunities where we worship together and celebrate our faith at the morning assemblies. It is through these opportunities that we experience the message that God loves us in creative and engaging ways. This year we have celebrated many successful school events such as our OLM loves Philadelphia Auction. The success of such events would not be possible without staff, parents and students working together collaboratively.

There are many exciting things set to take place for 2016. We have just concluded an 18-month self-study. We are scheduled for re-accreditation in April. This self-study was a true collaboration with faculty, staff, and parents.

When I reflect on my time as principal of what I consider to be an awesome school, I have many fond memories. As our school is a part of our faith, it should be cherished and celebrated. All of the experiences of this year have contributed in some way to ensuring we offer our students the best education. I believe we have a unique place for students to learn through loving and living.

Thank-you to all of the OLM families who continue to promote Our Lady of Mercy in a positive manner.

Merry Christmas to all and have a safe, happy and holy holiday season.

John McGrath

Upcoming Events

December 21

Christmas Door Decorating Contest Judging

Christmas Band & Choir Performance for School, 2PM

December 23

Noon Dismissal

December 24-January 3


January 4

Classes resume

There will be no Mercy Peek & Ponder distributed on Sunday, December 27th

Fourth Sunday of Advent

All of us can imagine Jesus, Mary and Joseph going home. We can imagine their daily lives. We can ask for the grace to live in God's presence, just as they must have done, and for the grace to be sensitive to each other and care for each other as they must have. We can ask that we might imitate their busy lives, trusting and dependent on God. Looking on their hidden life together, we can grow in a desire to be more humble, in a peace with greater simplicity, in a courage to let God take care of us. Whether we experience the poverty of that holy stable or the ordinary simplicity of daily routine, we can enjoy this week as a special opportunity to be drawn to a greater closeness with Jesus.

Scrip! How Do You Benefit?

We give 85% of the rebate to YOU, which is deducted from your tuition if you use your own account. The remaining 15% is put in the Scholarship fund to help struggling families with financial difficulties continue to educate their children at OLM.

If you use the OLM account, the entire savings goes into the Scholarship fund.

For Example:

You go to Giant every week and spend $200 on groceries. By purchasing a $200 Giant Scrip card, you still pay $200 for the same groceries, but you also GET $6.80 back. If you continue to do this for 36 weeks, that is $244.80 towards your tuition.

With Christmas coming up, the savings will really add up.

  • A $25 Honey Baked Ham card for your aunt = $2.55 (12% rebate)
  • Purchase $25 GAP or Old Navy cards for your 6 nieces & nephews = $17.85 (14% rebate for both cards)
  • How about a $100 gift card at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse for Mom & Dad = $8.50 (10% rebate)
  • Don't forget the mailman, UPS man, bus driver and garbage men. 10 of the $10 Dunkin Donuts cards = $2.55 (3% rebate)
  • Don't know his size? How about a Nike card? Nike pays 12%. Pick up 2 Nike cards and that's $10.20 to you.

So, between your Giant grocery rebate and the Christmas gifts (which you would purchase anyway!), you just received $286.45 towards your tuition. It really is that easy.

Orders placed by Tuesday can be picked up on Fridays.

If the order is intended for the teachers, we can put them all together in one envelope and give it to the homeroom parents.

Attached is the SCRIPS retailer list which highlights the cash back for each retailer. If you have any questions about setting up your account or if you need your login information, contact Stephanie Sapp @

You can pay online using PrestoPay and then order right from your phone and take advantage of the eCard and re-loadable cards and never have to wait to pick up physical cards.

Signing up is easy:

Go to and click Register, then click Join a Scrip Program.

Enter our enrollment code. By entering this code, your account will be associated with OLM so you can begin earning rebates!

Fill in all required personal information and click ‘I Accept.’

Choose two security challenge questions from the list and provide answers.

Enrollment Code: 8E8L5AC76615

Scholarship Awards for the Class of 2017 as of 12/13/2015

We are so happy and proud to announce scholarship awards to the following students in the OLM Class of 2016. The list will be updated as more awards are announced.

Shannon Reilly: Mount St. Joseph Academy: Founders Academic Scholarship

Maeve Gallagher: Mount St. Joseph Academy: Fontbonne Academic Scholarship

Micaelina Carter: Mount St. Joseph Academy: Fontbonne Academic Scholarship

Maggie Fitzpatrick: Mount St. Joseph Academy: Eugenia F. Comerford ’37 Alumnae Award

Carrie Johnston: Gwynedd Mercy Academy: Legacy Scholarship

Thomas McLaughlin: Bishop McDevitt: Lancer Leadership Scholarship

Nicholas Signoretta: LaSalle High School: Principal Scholarship

Lansdale Catholic: Msgr. Joseph Schade Scholarship

TOTAL AS OF 12/17/15: $138,000

Mercy 5K - Saturday, March 19, 2016

We are looking for volunteers for the Annual Mercy 5K Race. This is a wonderful community event. Please consider volunteering. If you are interested, please contact Debbie Collins, OLM Advancement Director at or the Advancement Hotline: 215-407-5223

2016-2017 Registration

If you register prior to 03/31/2016, registration fee is $250 per family.

If you registered after 04/01/2016, the registration fee is $350 per family.

Our registration fees cover: the cost per student of the student information database (MSP), Religion books, certain instructional classroom supplies, and administrative fees for the operation the FACTS system. Please note, registration fees are non-refundable.


Using the Smart Aid service will assist our school in making data-driven, objective decisions in determining needs-based financial aid. Smart Aid provides a systematic approach to processing applications, and gathering supporting documentation.

Additional Smart Aid Information

The new ONLINE application is available. Click the Smart Aid Button above to access the application. There is a $25 fee and the deadline for submission is 12/31/2015.


ALL OLM families are encouraged to complete and submit and application. This application replaces PSSA (BLOCS) and Smart Aid will handle all financial aid for OLM (and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia) - including BLOCS, Heritage of Faith Funds, and other scholarship opportunities - both system-wide and at OLM.

While we believe that Smart Aid will help us to more effectively and efficiently provide financial aid services to our families, we also know that the strategic use of financial aid is crucial to achieving and sustaining our enrollment goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Who should complete this aid application?

A: Whomever the child resides with should fill this application out, whether it is a parent, grandparent, aunt/uncle, or legal guardian. There is a section within the application where you can enter contributions from non-custodial parents and relatives.

Q: Why do I need to input my spouse’s information if I am remarried and they are not legally responsible for my children?

A: Smart Aid’s calculation works off of the total household income, therefore including all income, whether the party is legally responsible for your children or not. Our system however, does take into effect your spouse’s expenses as well as their income. It is important to list all expenses that are asked of within the application.

Q: I do not have the required tax documents. HELP!

A: Include the most recent tax documentation you have available. If you are asked for a specific line from a tax document that you have not yet completed, please estimate the projected amount.

Q: How will I know if I qualify for aid or not?

A: We do not disclose information about the results of your application. All final tuition aid decisions, including notification of an award amount (if any); will be made by OLM. For the date award notices is anticipated to be March 2016.


Believe it or not, it is time to our your 2015-2016 OLM yearbook! The cost of the yearbook is $20. The Class of 2016 does NOT need to order a yearbook as it is included in the graduation fees. All orders are to be completed online this year. Please no cash or checks! To place an order please follow the directions below:

1- Go to

2- At the top of website, select " "Buy Your Student's Yearbook". This will open a new tab.

3- Type in "Our Lady of Mercy" as the school. Be sure to select the correct school since there is another OLM!

4- Order your yearbook and check out! It may ask you to create an account to purchase the yearbook online!

All yearbooks orders are due February 1, 2016!


We welcome your assistance at Our Lady of Mercy Regional Catholic School. We are most fortunate to have such an interested, committed and involved parent community. Our active volunteer program not only provides valuable hands-on assistance through the school, but also benefits the children by reinforcing ties between the children’s individual homes as well as the community at large, and the school. OLM NEEDS YOUR HELP WITH LUNCH VOLUNTEERS! The Lunch/Recess Duty Volunteer program is a great way to volunteer and become involved at the school. Participating in our volunteer program is a wonderful opportunity to see your children at lunch and work with fellow parent volunteers.

Use the following link for Signup Genius web site:

December Virtue of the Month - JOY

Throughout the month of December, students will learn the importance of bringing joy and happiness to those around them. Saint Nicholas will be our model. Students will be recognized at the School Liturgy on 01/09/2016 at 9AM.

Prayer to Saint Nicholas

O good holy Nicholas,
you who brought joy to children,
put in my heart the spirit of childhood
about which the Gospel speaks.
Teach me how to sow
happiness around me. Amen.

OLM Home & School News

  • Save the Date: Please save the date for Home and School's first ever Designer Bag Bingo on Friday, January 22, 2016 ~ Ticket information will be available soon.
  • Box Top Collection: Home and School is looking for a few volunteers to help with the collection of box tops. This is a great way to volunteer from home. If you are interested, please contact Eileen Wisniewski at

Winston Wear School Store

How do you order? Go to the School’s website: and look for the tab “Parent Life”. Click on “Winston Wear”. You can either print the form out and send it into school or order via email at . Students may wear Winston Wear on gym days.

Birthday Blessings this Week

Frick, Alexandra M. Dec 20 - Sunday

Herron, Noelle Dec 20 - Sunday

Spear, Paul Dec 20 - Sunday

Dennin, Meghan Dec 21 - Monday

Maguire, Kevin Dec 21 - Monday

Martin, Gary Dec 23 - Wednesday

McMullen, Kathryn E. Dec 24 - Thursday

Kunf, Kaitlyn V. Dec 25 - Friday

Donnelly, John W. Dec 26 - Saturday

Greenhalgh, Emma Dec 26 - Saturday

Klemick, Meghan Dec 26 - Saturday

Rosenbaum, Abigail G. Dec 28 - Monday

Father Leva Dec. 30 - Wednesday

Nunez, Roman A. Dec 31 - Thursday

Playground at Lunch Recess

Monday, 12/21: Mrs. Marano

Tuesday, 12/22: Mrs. Kling

Lunch Duty Sign-Up:

Two parent volunteers must be on-duty in the school yard - before the playground is open. This ensures the safety of ALL.

Altar Servers 9AM

Monday, 12/21: Colin Hope

Tuesday, 12/22: Bella Sapp

Wednesday, 12/23: Nicky Araco

Thursday, 12/24: Jack Gentile