December 7th, 2016, 2nd Week of Advent
Tomorrow we have the great pleasure of celebrating the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. This is also the Patronal Feast Day of the United States of America. The Catholic Bishops of the United States chose the Blessed Virgin Mary in her Immaculate Conception as the patron of our country in 1846, eight years before the Immaculate Conception was proclaimed to be a dogma of the Church in 1854 by Pope Pius IX. Her patronage as the Immaculate Conception is needed now more than ever, which is a principal reason why we chose tomorrow as the day in which we would make a communal consecration to Jesus through Mary.
There is almost no place we can turn today without being “infected” by the corruption of the world. We need a safe harbor to protect us from possible infection. That safe harbor is Mary. One-hundred and fifty years before the dogma of the Immaculate Conception was proclaimed by the Church, Saint Louis de Montfort understood its significance as a fundamental truth of a devotion to Mary. St. Louis stated we need Mary to preserve the graces and treasures we receive from God because the devil is a skillful thief and he seeks to steal those graces and treasures. He explains that if we confide these treasures to Mary, she would take it as “an obligation of justice to preserve them” for us.
St. Louis’s description of his own world 300 years ago, sounds strangely familiar: “The world is now so corrupt it seems inevitable that religious hearts should be soiled, if not by its mud, at least by its dust; so that is has become a kind of mircle for anyone to remain in the midst of that impetuous torrent without being drawn in by it, in the midst of that stormy sea without being dr0wned in it or stripped by the pirates and the corsairs, in the midst of that pestilent air without being infected by it.”
Thus, his remedy, is our remedy: “It is the Virgin, alone faithful, in whom the serpent has never had part, who works this miracle for those who serve her in that sweet way” which is Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary.
Mary, most Holy and Immaculate Conception, pray for us!
SHA Gear will be in 12/19!
National Latin Exam (NLE)
The National Latin Exam is a 40-question, multiple-choice exam taken by students of Latin all across the country and world. The questions range from questions about Latin grammar to questions about Roman culture and mythology. Medals and ribbons are awarded to students who achieve high scores on this test and scholarships are available for high school seniors.
Sacred Heart Academy students have the opportunity to take the National Latin Exam on March 2, 2017. Students taking Latin in 7th grade and above are eligible to participate. All students who are enrolled in an SHA Latin class will automatically be registered. If your student is studying Latin and would like to take the NLE, but is not currently enrolled in an SHA Latin class, please contact Ms. DeRocher to register them by 12/21.
Additional CEC High School Courses Offered Next Semester
Please send an email to Mrs. Menardie by December 21 if you wish to enroll a student in one or more of the following courses:
Course: Scripture – Expository Study of the Old Testament
Mr. Tober will continue the Friday morning Scripture class through the second semester to all who are interested in continuing the study. The class will remain at the current time of 8:30 – 1o:00 a.m. New CEC 9-12 students are welcome to join.
Course: Theology of the Body
This course, for juniors and seniors only, is a systematic study of John Paul II’s seminal work, emphasizing his writing on human dignity, friendship, chastity, and vocational discernment. Students will be asked to read key passages of the original Wednesday audiences, reflect on themes through regular journal entries, and participate in class discussions on personal and intellectual aspects of the teachings. Monthly male and female breakout classes and panels of married couples and religious will offer students alternative settings for discussions, questions, and practical reflection.
Teacher: Miss Jenn Quiroz
John Paul II, Man and Woman He Created Them: A Theology of the Body (ISBN: 0-8198-7421-3)
Karol Wojtyla, Love and Responsibility (ISBN 978-0-89870-445-7)
Meeting Time: Fridays from 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
This course is a study of the basic tenets of economics,the Catholic Church’s teachings on economics and Catholic participation in economic activity, and the melding of the two in Hilaire Belloc’s writings on the formation of “the Distributive State”. The course will cover most topics in Thomas Sowell’s Basic Economics, a common sense guide that portrays economics in a simple and easy-to-understand presentation. The book is an introductory resource aimed at those with no prior understanding or previous study of the subject, and it utilizes realistic and historical examples from countries around the world to explain principles, rather than confusing the reader with graphs and technical jargon. After gaining a basic understanding of economics, students will explore Church documents that address the economic issues of our time, providing for us the Church’s stance on economics and how a Catholic layperson is called to participate in the economy. Finally, students will study Belloc’s Economics for Helen, where Belloc covers the elements of economics and its political application.
Teacher: Mr. Antoni Germano
Basic Economics, Thomas Sowell ($27) (ISBN: 978-0465060733)
Economics for Helen, Hilaire Belloc ($22) (ISBN: 978-1932528039)
Catholic Social Thought: The Documentary Heritage ($17.50) (ISBN: 978-1570758911)
Meeting Time: Wednesdays and Fridays from 12:45 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Diocesan Strategic Plan Review: You’re Invited, Please attend!
The Diocese has developed a draft strategic plan designed to strengthen Catholic schools in the Diocese of Grand Rapids. They are presenting this draft strategic plan and taking our input at forums throughout the Diocese.
Please consider joining on Monday, December 12, at 5 p.m. or 7 p.m. at West Catholic High School in Grand Rapids. More information about the forums (including dates of other forums), and a copy of the draft plan is available here.
The Advent Book Tree is Here
The Advent Book Tree will, once again, be available throughout Advent.
Tags on the tree list a book that comes from wish lists submitted by the teachers and library. Families are invited to choose books as gifts for classroom libraries, or the Academy library. Please choose your tag(s), purchase the item(s) listed, (paying very close attention to all the information given on each book), wrap the item(s) and deliver the package(s) back to the Academy office by Tuesday, January 3rd. These gifts will be distributed at Epiphany. Email Meghan Power with questions.
Handbook Highlight: Recess
“Unless it is raining or the wind chill is 10 degrees F. or below, students are expected to go outside each day. They need to be appropriately dressed with hats, gloves, boots, and scarves when conditions warrant. Students who are prevented from participating in recess due to injury or other physical impairment may remain indoors after prior coordination with their homeroom teacher.”
Spring Break Mission Trip Meeting
There will be an information meeting for all high school students and their parents who have signed up for the Mission Trip on Tuesday, December 20th at 6:00 p.m. in the Academy Cafeteria. Packets and a brief overview of the 2017 Spring Break Mission to Mississippi will be discussed. Time for questions will be offered. If your child has not signed up, and you are interested in the trip, please come to the meeting. Signing up does not necessarily guarantee a spot on the trip.
March for Life Meeting
There will be a meeting on December 20th at 7:00 p.m. in the Academy Cafeteria for all those attending Sacred Heart’s trip to Washington D.C. for the March for Life. At least one parent should attend. Parent (s) please bring heath insurance information as the trip will require a signed Medical Treatment Release Form. Final questions regarding the trip, and our baby blanket marathon fundraiser will be answered as well.
Funeral Lunch Support
Please consider volunteering to make a dessert for funeral lunches held at the parish. It is an excellent way to grow in virtue, corporal works of Mercy and baking skills! We aren’t looking for professional level cakes by any means. This is a good way for the older kids to get involved in service as well! If interested please contact the Parish Office.
Parish Family Nights Resume 1/11
Our final Parish Night took place last Wednesday. We look forward to seeing you when resuming on 1/11/2017. Even though there is no Family Night this week, please join us for the celebration on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception following 7 pm Mass tomorrow!
Parish Wide Consecration on Thursday, December 8th
A reminder that after the 7 pm Mass for the Celebration of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception tomorrow, all those who participated in the parish wide Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary will make their formal Act of Consecration. A reception will take place afterwards in the parish hall, all are welcome!
Baby Blanket Marathon Support
Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish & Academy will be sending a bus of 53 representatives to the March for Life in Washington D.C. in January. Most of the participants are the Youth and Young Adults of our Parish and Academy! This group is seeking to gather 800 Yards of donated Fleece for their 12 Hour Baby Blanket Marathon to be held on Saturday, January 7th here at Sacred Heart. The purpose of the Marathon is to raise a greater awareness for the Sanctity of Life, to assist the local Catholic HELP Crisis Pregnancy Center, and to raise necessary funding to offset the travel cost to Washington D.C. for the March. Please prayerfully consider donating yards of fleece. We NEED to start collecting now. The only criteria is that the colors and patterns are baby friendly. Donations of fleece can be left in the back of Church, or dropped off to the parish and/or academy offices. All the fleece will be used to make no-sew baby blankets, all of which will be donated to HELP! Thank you for your support!
High School Ministry:
Pray to End Abortion
Join us on Friday Mornings at 6 am at the abortion clinic, 320 Fulton to pray a Rosary. We go to Tim Horton’s afterwards for coffee and breakfast.
Mark your calendars for the High School Christmas Party, 1/11 at 6:15 pm.
Boys & Girls Basketball
Congratulations to both our 5th Grade Girls and our 5/6 Boys Basketball teams on their victories this past Saturday, December 3rd.
Come support the teams in their next games. The girls play Saturday, December 10th at 9 AM at St. Thomas and the Boys’ next game is Saturday the 10th at 12:30 at Corpus Christi in Holland.
You can find the game schedules on the Athletics Page on the School Website.
SHA Calendar – Four Weeks at a Glance
Events are included in the newsletter one time, from then on, they can be found below, which links to the main Academy calendar, the website calendar. The website calendar is the official calendar. Occasionally, we will list special Mass Celebrations. For a complete Parish Mass schedule, please click here. For this week’s Parish bulletin, click here.
6 St. Nicholas Day
8 Parish Marian Consecration at 7:00 pm Mass, reception to follow
10 Christmas Market
12 Diocesan Catholic Schools Strategic Plan Review @ West Catholic 5pm or 7 pm
13 5th Grade Girls Basketball vs. St. Stephen/St. Paul @ Home
14 All School Assembly
14 Parish Family Night
15 PTC Pizza Lunch
15 Advent Lessons & Carols (Advent Concert)
20 Rorate Extraordinary Form Mass
20 Opportunity for Confession
20 Spring Break Mission Trip Meeting 6 pm
20 March for Life Trip Meeting 7 pm
21 Parish Family Night
21 SMART Aid Applications Due
21 Christmas Vacation begins after school
1/3 School resumes, all students return to school