April 17 Email from Mr. Kelly

Dear SJS Catholic School Community,

We have made it through another week of not being fully together. I hope this letter finds you and yours doing well. These are strange days, and the teachers and I appreciate all that you are doing to help this time go smoothly. We are continuing to monitor all the state standards and regulations and will let you know when we have any further details on graduation, the sacraments, and end of the year material gathering. Thanks for your patience and understanding.

This historic COVID pandemic has required us all to make enormous sacrifices to protect the health of our community and school. At SJS we hope you and your family are adjusting to these circumstances and that you are experiencing the comfort of God’s faithful presence every day. Among the many ways this crisis has had an impact on all of us, the closing of our school for the balance of the school year is among the most difficult. We know how much our children miss their teachers, friends, and the opportunity to learn in the classroom setting. Aside from the challenge of taking on the job of teaching, having your children home full-time is hard for working parents who are trying to maintain their jobs from home. And, it is especially difficult for those of you who are part of the essential workforce and must find creative ways to find care for your children while you are at work. Our prayers are with you as you navigate these demanding days.

At SJS we hope you are finding ways to organize your days and creatively approach your child’s schoolwork. As educators, we encourage you to be flexible, and especially to be gentle and generous with your children and yourselves. Some days, things might go well; other days will be a struggle. That’s OK, it’s normal. We are confident you are finding help and guidance from your child’s teachers. We know our teachers and staff miss you and care deeply about your family. They are doing all they can to support you during this challenging time.

You likely know our operating budget relies on the revenue we receive from the parishes, which in turn is dependent on the weekly offertory collection. Without that, we will fall short of our budget and can’t fulfill our obligations. We are asking everyone either to mail in your regular parish contribution monthly, or better yet, go to the online giving page on the parish websites. This will ensure that we can get through this crisis, and will help us have greater financial stability in the future. I can’t stress enough how important it is that you continue to support our parishes if you can. Of course, many people are being financially affected by the COVID crisis with lost jobs and declining business. We know that may affect your contribution. If you are experiencing financial difficulty, please know of our prayers that your situation will soon improve. If you are in a financial crisis, please contact Catholic Charities, the St. Vincent DePaul Society, or your parish office. It is also important to re-enroll for next school year through Sycamore. Feel free to contact me if you have any issues or concerns.

One of the hallmarks of our school community is our ability to come together during times of crisis, through our shared faith in Jesus Christ. We know that our Lord is carrying us through this difficult season. He also has helped us to build a strong community where faith, hope, and love are evident in the ways in which we respond to one another and the challenges we face. We want to thank you for everything you are doing now to keep our bonds of friendship and community strong. Through the intercession of our Blessed Mother, and with the Lord’s assistance, we’ll get through this together. We are- Faith. Family. Future.

William Kelly