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Gearing up

“Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.” Matthew 18: 3-5

Incredibly beautiful art. Skinned knees. Thoughtful English compositions. Bathroom accidents. Math mastery. Spilled lunches. Aced history tests. Out-of-tune band songs. Smelly science experiments. Building the Kingdom of Heaven.

Yes, it is time to embark on the adventure of another Catholic school year.

It was an honor to again sit with all of the Principals from our Archdiocese of Denver schools at a special Mass celebrated by Archbishop Aquila, who in his inimitably loving way, reminded us the mission of our Catholic schools is to create disciples of Jesus Christ. And as we listened to Deacon Marc Nestorick read the Gospel of Matthew above, I was reminded how our Principals are examples of “the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven” right here on earth because each day they humbly live for receiving children in the name of Jesus.

For the last two days, the Principals have been gathering for meetings to prepare for the upcoming schools year. A huge part of all the discussions were how to be the best possible Christ-centric leaders possible and the five foundations of true Catholic leadership: Christian conviction, character, vocation, personal gifts and skills. As this group of tremendously selfless, dedicated professionals talked about the difficulties of their work, how easy it is to fall off the righteous path and how the spotlight is always shining on them, the discussions always circled back to the good news that there is a power beyond us that can support us – we just need to point ourselves to Jesus Christ.

A drawing from a Principal as part of the True Leadership session on Aug. 14, 2018

The best part of these meetings for us at Seeds of Hope is the inspiration we take from these leaders to do our work of making a Catholic education financially accessible to any family who seeks it. Listening to these leaders strongly reinforces what a transformative experience students in our schools will have through growing their relationships with Christ. These two days fill our tank with reinvigorated motivation as we seek additional funds to support our expanded mission.

If we have learned one lesson from the last six months, it is there is need for Seeds of Hope support at all of our schools. Seeds of Hope has a rich history of making a difference at our schools with acute need; it is a new dawn where we are now expanding out to help not only families at the schools we have always supported, but families across the Archdiocese of Denver who need help to give their children a Catholic education.

The opportunity for us is that in many corners of the archdiocese, people who may want to support Catholic education do not even know Seeds of Hope exists. It will be exciting to work with all of our schools to build relationships in their communities and grow the awareness of how supporting Seeds of Hope can help their neighbors (if you are reading this, you can help us by telling your circles about Seeds of Hope!).

Armed with insights from two great days of meetings and a servant’s heart, our great principals are gearing up for a new school year. Armed with fresh motivation of wanting to bring as many students as possible under their leadership to become disciples of Jesus, Seeds of Hope is gearing up to reach new heights.

(Note: Executive Director Jay Clark will periodically provide observations on what is happening with Seeds of Hope. Any thoughts – and typos – in this post are owned by him alone.)