St. Mary's Newsletter

St. Mary's Preschool and Elementary School

Mercy Day Mass

Thank you to the parents who were able to join us for Mercy Day Mass on Friday morning. Mercy Day marks the opening day anniversary of the first House of Mercy in Dublin, Ireland by Catherine McAuley in 1872. All three schools within the JACS system joined to celebrate our first All School Mass together since January 2020 and the legacy of the Sisters of Mercy in the Joplin area, who started our school system in 1885. In his homily, Bishop Rice shared a wonderful story of finding a Catherine McAuley prayer card in a library book. Using the prayer card, he reminded us that the love and wisdom of Catherine McCauley is still incredibly relevant today when we share the gifts of a kind word, a compassionate look, and by being a patient listener. These gifts, Bishop Rice reminds us, are more valuable than a piece of gold. What wonderful wisdom to remember in our world today!

Parking Lot Reminders

Morning drop off and afternoon carline dismissal are going well, thank you for helping to keep our school community and parking lot safe and moving along. I have noticed in the last week or so that a few parents and grandparents are starting to make a few changes, and I wanted to include a few reminders in this week's newsletter.

  • Please do not park in the school bus loading/unloading area in front of the school at any time, especially during morning drop off. The JACS bus takes students to and from the St. Peter's and McAuley campus and needs to stay clear of cars so students may enter or leave the bus safely. A few Preschool parents seem to be parking in the marked bus zone, please choose alternate parking places, thank you.
  • Please remember that no one should be pulling out and leaving the carline before your child's group of 6 is loaded and leaving the parking lot together. If you need to leave campus more quickly than carline allows, please park your car and enter the school to pick up your child from the school. Waiting a few extra moments to help ensure that our students stay safe is an investment in time everyone should be willing to make.
  • Please remember that although our parking lot has two lanes, drivers should be careful and anticipate children and parents crossing in front of their car as they enter the school in the morning. If you are driving in the left lane in the morning please watch your speed and stay alert.

Congratulations Mrs. Black!

Mrs. Margie Black and St. Mary's School were recently recognized in the 2021 Missouri Hearties, the annual award ceremony of the American Heart Association. The awards recognize outstanding dedication, work, and fundraising on behalf of the American Heart Association through the Kids Heart Challenge. St. Mary's students and families raised $8,725 in 2020 for research and support from the AHA and have raised over $50,000 in the seven years we have taken part in the program. Mrs. Black received the 2021 Loyalty Volunteer Award for her dedication to not only the AHA, but also teaching our children heart health and the importance of staying active. Mrs. Black and St. Mary's were quoted as being examples that "the heart of a volunteer feeds the soul of a nation". I like to think that if the world could reflect a some of the joy, compassion, and generosity found within the walls of St. Mary's our world would be a happier place. Thank you for your continued support of St. Mary's and the American Heart Association!

Spirit Wear Last Call!

The last day for ordering St. Mary's and JACS Spirit Wear is rapidly approaching! The deadline to place your order is Thursday, September 30. There are all kinds of styles and finish options for you and your child, perfect to show your St. Mary's school spirit! Spirit Wear shirts and hoodies may be worn to school each Monday of the school year with uniform bottoms. Here is the link to the order forms: *Please note that the Warrior pictured on the order forms will be substituted with the current JACS Warrior.

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Box of Joy Giving Project

Your child brought home information about the Box of Joy project in his or her Communicator Envelope today. St. Mary's School and Parish are working together to bring the love and joy of Christmas to children in Latin America this year. The Box of Joy ministry is an annual Christmas gift ministry organized by local Catholic schools, parishes, and groups across the United States and facilitated by Cross Catholic Outreach. Box of Joy provides schools and parishes the opportunity to participate in a simple and tangible service experience that has both a material and spiritual impact on the poorest of the poor in developing countries. The project also provides an opportunity to spread Christmas joy and the story of Christmas--the Good News of God's love--with children worldwide.

Starting next week and through October 22 we are asking families to donate simple toys, small stuffed animals, art materials, and other small items that can be collected and packed with care into a Box of Joy box for a child to receive at Christmas. There is a list of suggested items to donate (and a few items not to donate) in the letter sent home today. Your child and/or family may also write a note or make a drawing to place in the boxes. Students will bring items to their classroom teacher starting next week and we will count and tally the gifts as they come in. We will have a large box in the Commons for classrooms to bring their gifts once they are counted each day.

We will gather as a school and church community on Saturday, October 23 to assemble the gifts into boxes and get them ready to ship to Latin America. You and your family are invited to help pack (and receive Care and Share hours) the Box of Joy boxes up and get them ready for their journey. To help with shipping costs, we will be having a $1.00 Paid Dress Down Day on Friday, October 15 for students and teachers. This is not a Friday Mass day, so we will be able to dress comfy and cozy and help those in need.

Thank you in advance for your thoughtfulness and generosity in bringing the joy and happiness of Christmas to a child. What a meaningful project for your family to work on together and what a beautiful way to help teach our children the importance of thinking and helping others.

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Blessing of the Animals

Please join us for a Blessing of the Animals on Monday, October 4 at 2:15 p.m. to celebrate the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi. We will meet on the large grassy area in front of the school, west of the parking lot. Father Joe will visit about St. Francis and offer a blessing of pets. We ask that all pets be leashed or contained in other ways (aquarium, etc.) for the blessing and that pets who may be aggressive to others be left at home.

The Feast of St. Francis of Assisi concludes the Season of Creation that is celebrated annually from September 1 to October 4. The Season of Creation has been celebrated by the Church since 2015, recognizing Pope Francis' Encyclical Laudato Si. The title is taken from the first line of the encyclical, "Laudato si', mi Signore," or "Praise be to you, my Lord." In the words of this beautiful canticle, St. Francis of Assisi reminds us that our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens her arms to embrace us. Pope Francis' encyclical is divided into six chapters which together provide a thorough analysis of human life and its three intertwined relationships: with God, with our neighbor, and with the earth ( Images and details of how St. Mary's students have celebrated the Season of Creation will be included in next week's newsletter.

Get That Smile Ready for School Photos!

School Photos are coming soon! Interstate Photos will be taken on Monday, October 4 and Tuesday, October 5 for all St. Mary's students. Elementary students should wear either a red or navy uniform shirt with uniform bottoms for photos, Preschool students may wear any snazzy outfit for photo day. More information, including ordering details, will be sent home next Friday in your family's Communicator Envelope.

Important Upcoming Events

Wednesday, September 29: VIRTUS Training at St. Mary's, 6:00 p.m.

Monday, October 4: Kindergarten Field Trip to Wildcat Glades, Noon-2:00 p.m.

Monday, October 4: Feast of St. Francis Pet Blessing, 2:15 p.m.

Monday and Tuesday, October 4 & 5: School Photo Days

October 4 - 8: ITBS Testing in Grades 3 - 5

Thursday, October 14: Preschool Classes Visit the Pumpkin Patch, leave school at 9:00 a.m.

Friday, October 15: $1.00 Dress Down Day benefitting Boxes of Joy project

Friday, October 15: No School Mass, Rosary in Church at 8:15 a.m.

Friday, October 15: End of First Quarter

Monday, October 18: No School--Diocesan PD Day

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Like and Follow Us on Facebook!

Please follow us on our school Facebook pages. Photos, information, and videos are posted for you and your family to enjoy. Preschool information and photos can be found here, @StMarysPreschoolJoplin. Elementary School information may be found here, @StMarysCatholicElementarySchool. Like our school's pages and stay informed with all the great things happening at St. Mary's!