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Edmonton Catholic Schools

Superintendent's Message November 2017

ECSD 2017 - Religious Education Insert.pdf

  “My soul shall glory in the Lord, for He has been so good to me.”  (Taste and See, James Moore JR.)

The hymns which we sing in our liturgies and in the Mass are often rooted in scripture.  The verse shared above comes from one of our most beautiful Eucharistic songs, and is based on Psalm 34.  This psalm is one of thanksgiving in which the psalmist is praising God for deliverance from troubles.  When you are struck by the beauty of the message in songs at church, consider looking at the reference at the end of the song in the hymnal and reading the corresponding scripture passage!

Archbishop Smith has released a pastoral letter to the Archdiocese that will provide special focus for our faith community over the next 5 years.  It is deeply grounded in the words of Pope Francis, “These are the two conditions in order to follow Jesus: to listen to the word of God, and to put it into practice.  This is the Christian life – nothing more.  Simple, simple.”  (Homily at Daily Mass, September 23, 2014)

You can read the pastoral letter, watch a video titled Archbishop Smith’s Pastoral letter in 60 Seconds, and find other resources at  Beginning with this month’s newsletter, we will also be including highlights of sections of the pastoral letter for your information and consideration.

We are very pleased to welcome our newly elected Board of Trustees:  Ward 71-Terry Harris, Ward 72-Sandra Palazzo, Ward 73-Carla Smiley, Ward 74-Debbie Engel, Ward 75-Alene Mutala, Ward 76-Lisa Turchansky, and Ward 77-Laura Thibert.  Their very first Public Meeting was held on October 30.  The Trustees were sworn in and held their Organizational Meeting.  Trustee Harris was elected as Chairperson for the upcoming year, and Trustee Palazzo was elected as Vice-Chairperson for the same period.

Our Alberta Education Accountability Pillar Results Report, which is our report card from the province, was released a few weeks ago.  Our results, which are outstanding, reflect our commitment to continuous growth!  Visit our website to view the overall summary.

Catholic Education Sunday is being celebrated across Alberta on November 5th this year.  We celebrate Catholic education for the advantage, richness, and success that Catholic education brings to our students and families.  Please check our website and our social media each day during the week of October 30 – November 3 as we highlight different aspects of what makes Edmonton Catholic Schools so great for our children and families.  You can also join us on Catholic Education Sunday    (November 5) at St. Joseph Basilica for the Commissioning Mass for our new Edmonton Catholic Schools Board of Trustees at 12:15 pm.  Bishop Bittman will be presiding.

One of the significant characteristics of Catholic education is that, in addition to having our faith permeated in all aspects of the school day, all students also have courses in Religious Education.  In Elementary and Junior High, all students have Religion classes within their schedules.  At the High School level, students are expected to complete 9 credits in Religious Education within their program, and which contribute to Alberta Education's criteria of 100 earned credits required as the minimum for graduation.

We are pleased to begin sharing a new video series for students and parents on Staying Safe in a Digital World.  Our first video is titled Privacy.  The series features our STAY (School Team Advisor for Youth) Officer, Rick Cole, who will offer simple tips on how to be sure that we remain safe in the online world.  You can access this video by visiting and clicking on the video title on our banner.  We will use social media to share the release of future episodes.

In this month which is dedicated to remembrance and peace, I will leave you with a tweet from Pope Francis: “Let us bring the flame of Christ’s love to humanity which needs true happiness and peace so much.” (October 20/17)


Joan Carr