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Allelujah!  Jesus is ALIVE!!!  Easter is so important that our liturgical year sets aside 50 days (until the feast of Pentecost) to celebrate.  Enjoy the next seven weeks!  Happy Easter!!

Weren’t those 8th graders wonderful in Mary’s Way of the Cross on Good Friday?  I cried through the whole thing because it put me very much in God’s presence, and also because  I was so very proud of our 8th graders.  Beautiful.

Here are the plans for this week:

6th Grade:  We are moving very quickly through the “Israel’s United Kingdom” period of Old Testament history, because we are running out of weeks, and I think the students are somewhat familiar with this part of the story.  After entering the Promised Land, the Israelites are surrounded by pagan nations who are ruled by earthy kings.  The Israelites are supposed to be different, because they are ruled by God Himself, but eventually they demand an earthly king like their pagan neighbors.  In spite of God’s admonition: “A king will take make your sons fight in his army, will make your daughters serve him, and will tax your income…,” the people insist, “We want a king.”  As a result, there is a series of three kings in Israel – Saul for 40 years, then David for 40 years, then Solomon for 40 years.  At the end of that period, the kingdom will split into Israel and Judah, and at the books of the Prophets will begin to appear.  More details on that in next week’s blog!

7th Grade:  As I mentioned last week, in our study of Jesus’ life on earth, we managed to arrive at the Crucifixion just in time for Holy Week.  That means that this week, the week of Easter, we are ready to learn more about the Resurrection!!  Because we studied the Eucharist a couple of weeks ago, we are also planning to make homemade Communion hosts, hopefully on Friday of this week.  We need a few rolling pins for this project; I would appreciate it if a few students could bring in a non-breakable rolling pin marked with his or her name.  Thanks!

8th Grade:  Again, congrats to our beloved 8th graders on their moving presentation of Mary’s Way of the Cross.  We spent so much time preparing for the presentation in the past few weeks that it may be hard to get back to the regular curriculum, but we still have a lot of church history to cover this year, and the upcoming chapters are extremely interesting!  We are about to cover the period around the 1400s and 1500s, when several occurrences deeply affected the history of the Catholic Church…The Great Western Schism was a time of great confusion in the Church, when three men all claimed to be Pope….the invention of the printing press forever changed the way information was disseminated…the black plague wiped out 1/3 of Europe (and reduced the number faithful priests and nuns even more – because they were willing to care for the sick and dying, they died at a very high rate themselves)…Martin Luther and King Henry VIII appeared on the scene and Protestant churches began to separate from the Church Jesus had started…more detail in upcoming blogs!  We have a lot to cover!  We will also discuss the traditional Latin Mass over the next couple of weeks, to prepare the students for the Tridentine Mass they will attend during their trip to Washington DC.  Be sure to ask the students what they are learning!