The vibrancy of the St. James Catholic School community on display during visit by Bishop Deeley

Bishop Deeley received a warm greeting during an all-school assembly on Wednesday morning, January 17, at St. James School in Biddeford. Bishop Deeley was welcomed by principal Nancy Naimey and pastor of Good Shepherd Parish Fr. Timothy Nadeau before students performed an arrangement of "Silent Night" from their Christmas concert.

Before traveling to classrooms, Bishop Deeley met with middle school students in the cafeteria for a question-and-answer session. Students were interested to learn about his role as the bishop and his priorities.

"My priority is living the Gospel. Living the Gospel is realized in the activities of the Church each and every day, " said Bishop Deeley. "For example, here in Maine, Catholic Charities does outreach to help with immigrants to this country as part of social ministry. We all have the same mission of bringing forth the Good News of Jesus."

One student asked about the longest Mass the bishop had ever attended, and the answer was a Mass for African martyrs in Uganda which was five hours.

Bishop Deeley read to the pre-K before visiting kindergarten through grade five classes to experience what students are learning – from faith to academic subjects. In the STREAM (science, technology, religion, engineering, arts and math) multipurpose space, fifth graders shared scientific details on snowflakes and explained building six-sided models with everyday items like spoons and pipe cleaners.

During the course of the day, several students shared their experience at the Good Shepherd Parish's recent two-day MERCY retreat. Especially for middle school students and parents, the retreat featured speaker and author Steve Pokorny and included multi-media presentations, activities and prayer.  Events were held at Most Holy Trinity in Saco and St. Joseph Hall in Biddeford.

St. James School was established in 1992 and educates approximately 180 students today. The curriculum combines faith, service and learning in a values-based environment.

Bishop speaks to students in the cafeteria
Middle school students participated in a Q & A with the bishop.
A student gives the bishop a card.
Students gave the bishop cards they had made for his visit.
The bishop speaking to a group of seated students.
The bishop visits the kindergarteners.
The bishop reads to students.
Pre-K students were excited for the bishop to read to them.
The bishop sits in front of a group of students.
First graders read the story of David and Goliath and sang for Bishop Deeley.
A group of students surrounds the bishop showing him projects
Fifth graders showed the bishop their snowflake models in the STREAM room.
Students seated in a classroom.
Grade four was studying state capitals.
Students seated in a classroom.
Students in grade three showed the bishop book reports and math problems.
Students seated in a classroom.
Grade three presented what they are learning in the classroom.
Bishop Deeley and Fr. Nadeau