News for Week of March 5, 2014

As we begin the holy season of Lent, it seems right for all of us to pause and reflect what this time of thoughtful sacrifice is all about.  Below is an interesting quote from Sister Joan Chittister's book, The Rule of Benedict: Insight for the Ages.
“Lent is the time for trimming the soul and scrapping the sludge off a life turned slipshod. Lent is about taking stock of time... Lent is about exercising the control that enables us to say no to ourselves so that when life turns hard of its own accord we have the stamina to  say yes to its twists and turns with faith and hope…. Lent is the time to make new efforts to be what we say we want to be.”

Our April School Mass will be on Friday, 4/4/14, at 9am in the church.  All are welcome to join us in worship.  The Home & School Association will host a coffee beginning at 8:30am in the Parish Center. Please remember that no physical education uniforms should be worn to Mass.

Lenten Reflections - Faculty, staff, administration and students have been invited by Mrs. Gannatti to share in a series of daily Lenten reflections.  Click here if you would like an opportunity to share in these daily reflections.

This year, our spring vacation falls during Holy Week.  We would like to remind everyone that the Chrism Mass will be held at St. Joseph's Cathedral in Hartford on Tuesday, 4/15/14 at 11am.  Everyone is welcome to attend this beautiful liturgy.  As noted in the Catholic Transcript on 4/21/11 - " The Chrism Mass manifests the fullness of the bishop's priesthood and signifies the close unity of the priests with him.  During the liturgy, the sacred oils that are used in sacraments are consecrated."  We hope many of you will prayerfully consider attending the Chrism Mass as a special way to prepare for the Easter Triduum.

Looking ahead to 2014-2015 - Be sure to check your email for an important letter from our Pastor, Father Matera, our Principal, Mrs. Gannatti and the Chairperson of our School Board, Mr. Claude Howard.  This letter addresses the important topic of tuition for the 2014-2015 school year.  This information will be used to prepare the Family Enrollment Packets that will be sent out in the next several weeks.

Hot Lunch News - There will be a Make-Up Hot Lunch Day on Tuesday, March 18th.  This day will be a pizza lunch making up for the snow day on Friday, February 14th.  Any student that had hot lunch ordered for Friday, February 14th should plan on a hot lunch on 3/18.

March Parent/Teacher Conferences will be held from Monday, March 17th - Thursday, March 20th.  Each of these days will be a 12:45 early dismissal.  Important Correction: There will be Prekindergarten Enrichment available until 3:20pm on each of the conference days.  There will be no Aftercare available on conference days.  Unlike the Parent/Teacher Conferences held in November, the March appointments are not considered mandatory though they are strongly recommended.  If you do not sign up for a conference none will be scheduled for you.  You will be contacted by your child(ren)'s teacher(s) if you do not sign up for a conference and it is felt that one is needed. Conference sign ups are again being completed using Sign Up Genius.  Click here to access the Sign Up Geniuses for conferences or use the March Conference tab that appears at the top of the blog.

One of life's biggest questions - If you or someone you know is wondering if their child is ready for Kindergarten, please join us on Thursday, March 13th.

Do you have a new face for St. Mary’s School?  If you have a younger child that is not yet attending St. Mary's and you will be sending him or her to St. Mary’s for prekindergarten or kindergarten in the 2014-2015 school year but have not yet completed an application, please let us know.   NOTE - Students enrolled in our PreKindergarten that are moving up to Kindergarten DO NOT need to reapply. Please call the school office at 860-658-9412 or send us an email at   We will mail you an application for your student and we look forward to welcoming them!

Do you know someone wondering if St. Mary's might be the right place for their child(ren)?  Please invite them to come by on any Wednesday during the month of March.  Our "Walk-In Wednesdays", will take place on every Wednesday in March from 9 - 11:30am.  No appointment is necessary.  We will also have an Open House for Prospective Families on Wednesday, April 9th from 9 until 112:30.

Fill Your Easter Baskets with Delicious Munson's Chocolates - Gr. 7 Field Trip FundraiserFill Your Easter Baskets with Delicious Munson's Chocolates - Gr. 7 Field Trip Fundraiser

Buy your Easter candy early and support Saint Mary’s students at the same time! Your purchase will help defray costs associated with the 7th grade's field trip to Boston. The cost of the chocolate is the same price as at the local Munson’s retail shop. Order forms will be sent home on Friday, February 28th. Please return your order and payment to the school office by: Wednesday, March 12th. Please make checks payable to: "St. Mary’s School" and note “Munson’s” in the memo section of your check. Your order will be ready for pickup at school during the 1st week of April – the exact date/time to be announced. The 7th grade class thanks you in advance for your support!

Yearbook News -
It is that time of year again.  The 8th Grade class is hard at work compiling this year’s St. Mary's School Yearbook.  The yearbook is a great keepsake since it includes a photo of every student in the school along with many great photo memories from the year's events.  The yearbooks are $28 each.  Click here for an order form and send in your payment by cash or check made payable to “St. Mary’s School” with “Yearbook” in the memo to the school office. Orders need to be in by March 31st.
The Yearbook needs your photos of all sports teams and clubs.  If you have a photo of a sport’s team or club, please forward them to  If you have any other photos of events this year, i.e., pumpkin bingo, choral concerts, band concerts, Lessons and Carols, etc., please also forward them to Donna Nolan.  Thanks in advance for making this year's Yearbook a terrific book of memories!

Athletic News -

Congratulations to our JVA Boys Basketball team on winning their championship game against St. Tim's.  The score was 26-22.  Great job!  We are so proud of you!

Ski & Snowboard Club has finished its season for 2014.  Our thanks to Mr. Jim Shanley for coordinating the club this year.  Mr. Shanley was ably assisted by a number of other parents.  Click here for an important message of thanks to these generous volunteers.

Home & School Association News

Updates to the HSA Calendar - There will be an HSA meeting on Thursday, 3/6/14, in the grade 4 classroom beginning at 6pm.  An additional HSA meeting has been scheduled for Thursday, 4/3/14, for election of HSA officers for 2014-15.  This meeting will also begin at 6pm.  Location is to be determined.  Finally, the HSA meeting scheduled for Thursday, 5/28/14, has been moved to Thursday, 6/5/14, at 6pm.  Location to be determined.

Join us for an evening of wine tasting and pleasant company that will help us build our new playground.  Click here for a downloadable copy of this flyer and reservation form.

St. Patrick's Day Annual Dinner -  

Click here for a downloadable flyer regarding the annual St. Patrick's Day Dinner sponsored by St. Mary's Parish and the Knights of Columbus.  The organizers of this dinner are also hoping that there may some Irish Step Dance students that might like to perform at the dinner.  If your child(ren) study Irish Dance and are interested in sharing their talent at the dinner, please contact Rhoda Obemeier at 860-651-4027.

Partners in Faith - Click here to display this month's edition of Parters in Faith.

Alumni News

David Kalamarides, Class of '11 
SMS Alumni & Northwest Catholic Junior recently participated in the American Mathematics Contest held on February 4th and sponsored by the Mathematics Association of America. David took first place in the division for high school juniors. Congratulations on this fine accomplishment.  We love to hear about our alumni's successes - if you have alumni news to share, please send it to

Community News

Community Farm of Simsbury will be providing a wide variety of summer programs for children as young as 2 years of age through students entering grade 8 in Fall 2014.  Click here for more information.

Celebrating Seuss!   Students in Mrs. Jehnings' first grade celebrated Dr. Seuss' birthday this week with paired reading.