Ms. Monaghan's Message - Nov. 30
Challenge, Inspire, Empower & Serve
Important Upcoming Dates
Dec. 2: Boy Scout Chili Dinner from 11am - 2pm
Dec. 3: Bring in evergreen branches for advent wreathDec. 4: Create advent wreath; MS Student Created Escape Room 5:00pm or 6:15pm
Dec. 6: Christmas Program @ 7:00pm
Dec. 7: No School - Staff PD
Dec. 11: PTO Ornament Exchange
Dec. 13: Parish Penance Service @ 7:00pm
Dec. 14: Nutcracker Performance @ 2:00pm
Dec. 15: St. Nick's Small Mall @ 1:30pm
Dec. 18: 3 yr. old Christmas program @ 7pm
Dec. 19: Country Hill Motors Event - TBD
Dec. 20: Preschool Christmas Program @ 7:00pm; Taize Service @ 7:00pm
Dec. 21: Skating Party; Noon Dismissal; Country Hill Motors event @2:00pm
Dec. 24 - Jan. 8: Christmas Break
We also want to extend a HUGE thank you to everyone who came out to the Panera Fundraising event and PTO meeting on Tuesday. It was reported that we had the most participation that they have ever seen at Panera, and we owe that to YOU! Thank you for coming out to show your support!
Diocesan Family Income Survey
Each child in the family who participates in the survey will receive a Dress Down Pass, so complete yours today! You can find the survey at the link below. Thank you!
Celebrate the Advent Season at Home!
We want to thank our St. Patrick PTO for helping sponsor this amazing opportunity!
St. Nick's Small Mall
When: Saturday, December 15 from 1:30 - 3:30
Where: Jubilee Room - St. Patrick Church
A Family Service Opportunity - Don't Miss Out!
On Wednesday, December 19, Country Hill Motors will be surprising 2 deserving families with amazing prizes. Our youth group and Student Council have been invited to come along and sing Christmas carols during the big reveal! If you're willing/able to drive on this day, please let Dana Nolan know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Friday, December 21, Country Hill Motors will be surprising 1 deserving family with the gift of a van, filled with many other wonderful items. Our students have again been invited to attend and sing Christmas carols at this wonderful event that will be held a Country Hill Motors in Merriam, KS from 2:00 - 5:00pm.
If you are willing to attend with your family, please RSVP to Kaci Monaghan at email@example.com.
We ask that all who attend each event wear St. Patrick Spirit Wear and Christmas hats!
PTO's Mr. Christmas Gift Program
Birthdays This Week
The Spirit of Christmas
My older sister, however, was just the opposite. She LOVED Christmas so much that she kept a room in her house that was decorated for Christmas year round. She kept her Christmas village up, a fully decorated Christmas tree, and tons of other decor. She loved QVC's Christmas in July, even though she never bought anything, and couldn't wait for Hallmark's Christmas movies in July either. It drove me NUTS!
Until she became ill.
One of the last conversations I had with my sister began with a text I sent in the wee hours of the night. She'd been in the hospital again for several days, and her spirits were very low. She'd planned this grand 4th of July event for our family at her new house (even though we all knew it wasn't a good idea), and then ended up in the hospital and we had to cancel the event. She was depressed and angry...so angry. She asked that none of us come visit her, which we promptly disobeyed, and then she was rude to us when we arrived.
One evening during this bitter and angry week, I was up late, worrying over her, and happened to see a commercial on Hallmark for their "Christmas in July event." A Christmas movie was going to be played the next day...even though it was still early July! I sent her a text,
"Oh Lord, Christmas in July is starting on Hallmark!"
A few moments later, my phone dinged with, "What? It's too early."
"I just saw a commercial, they are showing a movie tomorrow. Blah!"
This text exchange led to a phone call, something she'd rarely done in the past few weeks, where I teased her about her love for Christmas BEFORE Thanksgiving, and she laughed and called me a Scrooge. I have to tell you, though, her entire attitude changed. She became less grumpy and angry, and more hopeful and kind...back to the Kerri I knew and loved. Not only did she watch her Hallmark Christmas movie, she (who was so ill at the time could not sit up in bed) arranged for Jimmy Johns to cater lunch to her entire nursing staff that Friday. My uncle had stopped by to see her, and she begged him to help her set it up. He did, and she was thrilled.
So funny that just this one Christmas movie in July completely changed her attitude. Hmmmm, maybe there was something to this??
On that Friday, Jimmy Johns delivered the sandwich tray to the transplant floor where my sister had spent most of the last 9 months. The nurses thanked her and doted on her and she was giddy. She called my mom, and although their conversation was a little fractured, my mom could sense this change in her spirit as well. And then, once she knew all of her nurses would be well fed that day, and had expressed her happiness to everyone who was around (including my mother via phone), her heart stopped beating.
That's the day my attitude about celebrating Christmas truly changed. While I'd always celebrated, had been big on traditions with my children, and truly enjoyed the spirit of Christmas, I was missing something. Clearly, my sister had figured out something that I hadn't. There was more to Christmas spirit than the day after Thanksgiving to December 25th. There is something truly magical in the spirit of Christmas, the hope that surrounds the advent season, the anticipation for the birth of Jesus! I've begun embracing that anticipation more and more since by sister's death, to the point where I truly have to make myself wait to pull out the Christmas decorations, and that it hurts my heart just a little when I take those ornaments - special reminders of my sister - and put them away.
I encourage you to find ways to celebrate this season of hope and anticipation with your family. Don't allow the stress of gift buying and rushing from one holiday event to another overwhelm you and take away from the meaning of this glorious season. Take time to do a small thing each day with your family to remind each other how fortunate you are and how blessed you have been. Look at old ornaments or decorations and tell the story of how they came to be a part of your family traditions. Reach out to someone in need, spend time playing board games as a family, or just spend some quiet time alone in prayer. Whatever you do, don't allow the hustle and bustle to let your inner Grinch come out this season (as I have done in the past). Embrace the chaos, embrace the JOY! The advent season comes and goes so quickly, we should truly treasure each and every day.
Below you will find links to different advent activities you may want to try.The first is a wonderful way to pray during the advent season that I plan to try myself! I hope you will share about any that you try with us on our Facebook page, and maybe you will inspire someone else to do the same!