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Educating today’s youth through service

Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of St. Louis – which encompasses eleven counties – provide elementary, secondary, and special education programs to children of all faiths. Our schools invite the more than 40,000 Catholic school students into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ through academic and faith formation programs in safe, nurturing environments. We provide pre-school and after-school programs, plus year-round inclusionary pre-schools for children 6 weeks to 6 years.

This year, Catholic Schools Week is being celebrated nationally from January 25-31. In St. Louis, every Catholic school is celebrating our nearly 200-year history, our mission to educate the Catholics of the future, and our Catholic identity—Alive in Christ!

“The first essential mark of a school’s Catholic identity is that faith in God is proclaimed in everything the school does,” said Archbishop Robert J. Carlson in his St. Louis Review column, ‘Before the Cross.’ “Catholic schools teach by words and example that we are called, first and foremost, to be women and men who love God, love our neighbor and look forward to our destiny to be happy with Him in heaven. If God is at the center of your school’s daily life, you will have a strong Catholic identity. Your school will truly be Alive in Christ!”

One way Catholic schools teach young Catholics to love their neighbor is through Christian service programs that are an integral part of the schools’ faith formation curriculum. Often, Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of St. Louis partner with social service agencies, many of which are Catholic, to learn about their ministries and to offer their support through personal contributions of their time, talent and treasure.

During Advent, 2014, Holy Redeemer Catholic School’s student council challenged each student to bring at least five items for their canned food collection to fill the food pantry at St. Elizabeth, Mother of St. John the Baptist Parish. Students who met or exceeded the challenge became members of the “5 Can Club.” In recognition of their generosity, their names were displayed in the main hallway of the school.

HairMeanwhile, at the secondary level, 124 young women at St. Dominic High School gave profound witness to Christian service, one of the four pillars of the Dominican mission, by donating over 90 feet of hair to children suffering from hair loss due to cancer or other illnesses. Eleven area hair stylists volunteered their time to make the process as painless as possible.

The St. Dominic High School Student Council, Pro-Life Club and CRU, (Christ Renew Us) organized the event in support of Children with Hair Loss and those undergoing Hair regrowth treatment. It was a glorious success and everyone involved got a great sense of community from it.

SHARE WITH US HOW YOUR SCHOOL VOLUNTEERS IN THE COMMUNITY ON OUR FACEBOOK PAGE, AND WE WILL ADD TO THE STORY. 

For more stories of Christian service, as well as academic excellence, faith formation and community, read The e-Vangelizer. To subscribe, write suebrown@archstl.org