This new initiative has been developed by the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and has a Catholic High School program in which we are happy to participate. Along with all 16 Catholic high schools in the archdiocese, SMSA will have every high school student engage with these Lenten Missions. Half of our students will be scheduled for the 60 minute Lenten Mission experience on Friday, February 19, and the remainder of our Ledgers will participate in the Lenten Mission on Friday, February 26. Each 60 minute mission will take place on campus at SMSA and will be organized through Theology classes. Each high school Lenten Mission is presented by priests of the archdiocese, and based on The Gift of Sunday Theological Reflection. Fr. John LoCoco has been asked to conduct the SMSA missions.
A separate program of Parish based Lenten Missions is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m. These will be hosted at 18 parishes throughout the archdiocese (including Holy Family Parish in Fond du Lac) and conducted in English, Spanish, and American Sign Language. The list of parishes hosting the Lenten Mission can be found at The Gift of Sunday Lenten Missions: For more information about any aspect of The Gift of Sunday, please contact Randy Nohl, firstname.lastname@example.org or 414-758-2216.
I am delighted to share that SMSA has been given the opportunity to gather the Class of 2021 for their Senior Retreat. It will take place NEXT Wednesday, February 24 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Holy Family Parish. To comply with ongoing COVID protocols, we are unable to gather students for an overnight retreat experience. Despite this limitation and the abbreviated planning time, the SMSA staff is committed to taking full advantage of this opportunity and to making the retreat day very memorable for the Class of 2021.
We are grateful to our partners at Holy Family Parish for enabling us to use the beautiful worship and gathering space so that our seniors can celebrate as a class, together, on retreat. We are also grateful that Fr. John LoCoco will serve as retreat leader. Fr. John has made our seniors such a priority of his ministry. He will be joined by an enthusiastic “retreat team” of SMSA educators who will serve as small group facilitators and journey with our seniors throughout this special day.
Senior retreat is a privilege, and perhaps this year even more than most! Senior retreat is also an SMSA requirement for graduation. Seniors who have been officially learning virtually for the year are invited to consider joining the class in-person for this unique retreat experience. We realize that this may not be practical or possible for some, so seniors learning virtually will still be able to participate on Wednesday, February 24. Seniors who have been officially in-person learners for most of the year are expected to participate in-person. They do not have a virtual option for the retreat.
On Wednesday, February 24th, seniors will not report to the SMSA campus at all. Instead they should arrive directly at Holy Family Parish by 8:45 a.m. where they will be greeted by the retreat team. The retreat will begin promptly at 9:00 a.m. In the week ahead, seniors will be given further directions about their attire, lunchtime and what to bring along on retreat.
As recent as last month, moving forward to plan any student retreat was only an optimistic hope or dream. Today, we stand grateful to God for the chance to support our seniors with this special retreat experience that shall offer the Class of 2021 valued time for reflection, meaningful discussion, fellowship, prayer and celebration. Parents should watch for more details to be shared directly from Sheila Skiff, who will coordinate logistics for the Senior Retreat.
TUESDAY CLASS MASSES:
Beginning on Tuesday, February 23rd, each high school class will have the opportunity to worship and pray together at Mass in the chapel! Mass will occur every Tuesday, during the Homeroom/LunchBlock in the middle of the day. The rotation of Tuesdays will begin with Seniors, then Juniors, Sophomores and Freshman. This allows each class to have one class Mass per month. Lunch will be served to students after Mass. Fr. John and Fr. Edward will also rotate as celebrants.
We are grateful that health protocols now enable us to plan for such experiences – for the first time this year! Thanks to Heather Reilley, Sheila Skiff, Fr. John and Fr. Edward and the Leadership Team for enabling this opportunity for our Ledgers!
Our Lady of the Ledge, pray for us!
Be well, God bless.
Eamonn O’Keeffe, Principal Grades 9-12