Dear Star Parents,
Advent Week 2: When I taught 5th grade, one of my favorite supplemental sites for religion class was Busted Halo. This week, I thought I’d share what I showed the kids last year: What is Advent?
Yesterday, on Sunday, we lit another purple candle, the Candle of Love. Reflecting on the past week, I realize I have witnessed many instances of love at school. I saw love of neighbor and environment when a third grader came to tell me of a kindergartener’s thoughtfulness in picking up after the older kids in the yard, without being asked!
I saw parents chaperoning field trips, most notably those driving carloads of preteens all the way to San Jose’s Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum. Now, if that isn’t a show of love, I really don’t know what is. One of our Kindergarten dads lovingly prepared the main entree for hot lunch on Thursday, providing a healthy and delicious hot meal to those with lunch tickets as well as hungry teachers (and principal)! I saw Fr. John sharing his love of faith in the classrooms and teaching about Adoration. I was further blessed to witness a most beautiful Immaculate Conception Mass, prepared by the 4th graders who reminded us of Mary’s gift of love when she said, “Yes,” to God’s call.
In Sunday’s gospel we hear John, Jesus’s cousin, calling us to, “Prepare the way of the Lord. Make straight his paths.” When I heard this, I thought, Well, how am I to know if Jesus will come through this path that I am preparing? How am I supposed to recognize him when he comes into my life this Christmas?
But in writing this letter, I realize preparing the path isn’t about all the stuff we, as parents and educators, are doing to prepare for Dec. 25. No, it’s about purposefully pausing during this busy time to recognize and share acts of love, like the ones I enumerated above. What is wondrous, is that those were just a few of the ways I witnessed His grace and loving presence in my life last week. There were and continue to be so many others.
In this quiet time of reflection, I see how this school would not be the place it is and I could not help make it flourish without all of you and the love you have for this community. Each of you, no matter the role you have at Star, uniquely embody the love Jesus asks us to give one another in the Great Commandment.
So, as we enter into the second week of Advent, I invite you to pause in the midst of all the activity to remember why we are doing what we are doing this busy holiday season and why we find ourselves here together.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son.” (John 3:16)
Without this belief, Star of the Sea would not exist. And we Catholics believe He is the reason for this season. So, at least for myself, I know my job is and always has been more satisfying when I actively recognize the ways I witness God’s love in the hearts of others. This practice helps me pave the way for Jesus in my own heart, because it’s through the goodness of you that I find Him in me.
Much love this week,
Mrs. Theresa Poon