Maine Catholic Schools Week 2018 (January 28-February 3) celebrates the mission of Catholic Schools: to evangelize students by nourishing faith and encouraging academic excellence while accentuating the importance of community and service in a nurturing environment. During the week, each school holds a variety of fun activities, family gatherings, and service projects. Below you will find a list of the events taking place at Catholic schools in Maine for this year's celebration!
Holy Cross School, South Portland
During Maine Catholic Schools Week, the Holy Cross community will continue to extend its kindness and generosity to answer prayers from families over 8,000 miles away in Tsholotsho, Zimbabwe. Since 2015, the school has helped raise thousands and thousands of dollars for the Ngamo Primary and Secondary Schools in Tsholotsho. The proceeds have paid for new piping to provide fresh water for students; tuition assistance for students unable to afford the $10 trimester fee; renovations for the teachers’ cottage; clothing and sporting equipment for village families; and the completion of other projects. Learn more about the "Penny Wars" service project and other Catholic Schools Week activities set for Holy Cross.
St. James School, Biddeford
While enjoying the gift of a week featuring fun, games, and community, students at St. James School in Biddeford will also take time to show their gratitude to people who have given them so much. Rob Surette, an internationally celebrated artist known for creating pieces at lightning speed, will offer live performances at St. Joseph Church, located on 178 Elm Street, for students (Friday, February 2, at 12:30 p.m.) as well as parents and parishioners (Friday, February 2, at 6 p.m.). He has appeared on Today, Good Morning America, The Tonight Show, and several other national programs. During Maine Catholic Schools Week, the students will also honor parishioners, veterans, priests, and sisters. Learn more about all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for St. James.
St. John's Catholic School, Brunswick
During Maine Catholic Schools Week, St. John's students will extend a helping hand to those who seek assistance at the Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program (MCHPP) in Brunswick. The MCHPP provides food for hundreds of local families through a food bank, food pantry, and soup kitchen. St. John’s students will fill large donation boxes, each labeled with a specific grade, as part of a weeklong competition that will produce two groups of winners: the grade with the largest amount of donations and the recipients of the food collected. In addition, the students will reach out to homebound parishioners and offer thanks to veterans, a group that includes their principal. Learn more about all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for St. John's.
St. Michael School, Augusta
Throughout Maine Catholic Schools Week, students of all ages at St. Michael School in Augusta will carefully craft, create, and color special cards with a message of thanks to a group of local heroes: first responders. Local police, fire, and EMS representatives will gather at the school on Friday, February 2, at 10 a.m., to receive the cards and additional gratitude from the entire student body at a schoolwide assembly in the school’s gym. The community service project is just one element of a packed schedule for the week. Learn more about all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for St. Michael.
St. Brigid School, Portland
Bishop Robert P. Deeley will kick off Maine Catholic Schools Week with a special Mass for St. Brigid students, staff, and school families on Sunday, January 28, at 10 a.m. The Mass, which will also be attended by parishioners, is set for St. Joseph Church, located on 673 Stevens Avenue in Portland. The bishop’s visit will serve as the start of an unforgettable week at St. Brigid, located on 695 Stevens Avenue. On Monday, January 29, all students at the school will participate in a massive community service effort. The younger children will hold a hat, mitten, and scarf drive for local children who may need winter accessories. The collection items will be distributed by the Portland Housing Authority. Meanwhile, the older students will collect change to donate to a heating assistance fund for local residents. Collection receptacles will be set up around the school. The proceeds will be donated through Catholic Charities Maine. Learn more about all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for St. Brigid.
Saint Dominic Academy, Auburn and Lewiston
All are welcome to join the Saint Dominic Academy community as it kicks off Catholic Schools Week with the Winter Carnival on Sunday, January 28. The carnival, now in its second year, will run from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the academy’s Auburn campus, located on 121 Gracelawn Road, and will feature exciting indoor and outdoor events including a fire pit, s’mores, snowman building, cardboard sled racing, a pottery demonstration, food, a Maine Army National Guard obstacle course in the gym, campus tours, and much more. The event will wrap up with an ice hockey clinic, conducted by the Saint Dominic Academy teams and coaches, and a free skate at Norway Savings Bank Arena from 4:50 p.m. to 6 p.m. The arena is located on 985 Turner Street in Auburn, and all are encouraged to attend. Throughout the week, students at both the Auburn (Grades 7-12) and Lewiston (Pre-K through Grade 6) campuses of the academy will engage in academic competitions, fun activities, clothing theme days, and special events, including a visit from Bishop Deeley to the Lewiston campus, located on 17 Baird Avenue, on Wednesday, January 31, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The bishop will spend time in each classroom at the school, speaking to students and staff before enjoying a staff luncheon presented by the Friends of St. Dom’s. On Tuesday, January 30, students will gather at the Auburn campus to participate in a variety of service projects, including the building of bookshelves for Trinity Jubilee, the sewing of tee shirt totes for St. Mary’s Nutrition Center, the creating of knotted rosaries for students, and the making of Valentine’s Day cards for residents at St. Mary’s d’Youville Pavilion. The students at the Lewiston campus will make cards and bring treats for the bus drivers on Tuesday. Learn more about all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for Saint Dominic Academy.
Mount Merici Academy, Waterville
Inspired by a message from a fifth-grade girl, the academy will hold the “Together, We Can” Penny War, which will benefit children in Puerto Rico who are recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Maria. All week, Mount Merici students in each classroom will place pennies in their classroom jar. Students can then go to other classrooms and deposit silver change and dollar bills which will be subtracted from the total of the other classroom. In addition to the service project during Catholic Schools Week, an Italian supper in celebration of the Feast Day of Saint Angela Merici, foundress of the Ursuline Order, will be held at the academy on Saturday, January 27, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.; a schoolwide Mass will be celebrated on Wednesday, January 31, at 10 a.m.; and a family movie night is slated for Friday, February 2. The academy will also host a series of fun activities for the students during the week, including academic contests, door decorating, student against faculty competitions, a bowling field trip, and a large book fair. Prospective families are invited to tour the school throughout the week as well. Learn more about the origins of the Penny War and all of the Catholic Schools week activities set for Mount Merici Academy.
St. Thomas School, Sanford
Students at St. Thomas School in Sanford will participate in a number of special and memorable activities each day, but it’s the weeklong collections they will lead that faculty hope will make an indelible impact.
“We will be collecting sheets and blankets for the York County Shelter Program in Alfred, food and monetary donations for the Sanford Food Pantry, and money and school supplies for our sister parish’s school in Haiti,” said Donna Jacques, principal at St. Thomas.
The children will also spend part of the week creating Valentine’s cards for residents at local nursing homes.
“Our students have a great awareness of the importance of serving those in need,” said Jacques.
The week will begin with the school’s annual silent and live auction on Saturday, January 27, at the Town Club in Sanford from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Learn more about all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for St. Thomas School.
Holy Savior School, Rumford
Students at Holy Savior School have always enthusiastically welcomed Bishop Robert P. Deeley when he arrives in Rumford to celebrate a special Mass or visit them in their classrooms, but as part of Maine Catholic Schools Week, the children will spend time with the bishop in a special place: swishing down the slopes! On Friday, February 2, Bishop Deeley will join the Holy Savior students for a day of skiing and snow tubing at Black Mountain Ski Resort in Rumford starting at 9:30 a.m., providing an opportunity for the bishop to share in one of his favorite winter hobbies with the school community. In addition to the ski trip, students at Holy Savior will celebrate Catholic Schools Week by welcoming local police officers to the school on Wednesday, January 31, for a special “thank you” lunch and to collect personalized cards made by the students offering gratitude for their service. Learn more about all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for Holy Savior School.
All Saints Catholic School, Bangor
All Saints Catholic School in Bangor will do its share of celebrating the school community during Maine Catholic Schools Week. Fun activities, student showcases, a joint campus Mass, and “dress up” theme days fill a schedule that is equal parts joyous and reflective and also includes a schoolwide act of generosity. On Saturday, January 27, All Saints students and parents will be at Danforth’s Down Home Supermarket (2402 Route 2 in Hermon) from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., collecting food items for multiple local food cupboards. The following week, students will continue to bring food items from home to add to the collection. People from outside the school community who would like to donate but can’t make it to Danforth’s are asked to drop off their donations throughout the week (Jan. 29-Feb. 2) at either campus of All Saints (166 State Street or 768 Ohio Street, both in Bangor). At the end of the week, all of the donations will be divided among area food cupboards. Learn more about the project and all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for All Saints.
St. John Regional Catholic School, Winslow
On a schedule filled with activities ranging from “Beach Day” to a family chili/chowder contest, the staff at St. John Regional Catholic School in Winslow hopes that the school’s service projects during Maine Catholic Schools Week will be the experiences students find most fulfilling. On Wednesday, January 31, a “change challenge” will be held to raise money for the Travis Mills Foundation. Mills, a retired United States Army Staff Sergeant of the 82nd Airborne, is one of only five quadruple amputees from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He founded the non-profit foundation to benefit and assist wounded and injured veterans and their families. In addition, on Thursday, February 1, all St. John students will create personalized Valentine’s Day cards for the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament in Waterville to show their appreciation for their many contributions to the area. Theme days are scheduled as well, including a “Beach Day” on Tuesday, January 30, when students will wear beach attire; “Celebrating the Nation” on Wednesday, January 31, when students will wear red, white, and blue and a prayer service for peace in the nation will be held; altar boys will be honored during “Vocations Day” on Thursday, February 1; and “Staff Appreciation Day” on Friday, February 2, will feature “Muffin Morning” and a staff luncheon. St. John will wrap up Maine Catholic Schools Week with a special chili/chowder contest for school families in the cafeteria on Saturday, February 3. Learn more about the projects and all of the Catholic Schools Week activities set for St. John Regional.