Board Chair Mary Martin
“Faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13). For CCSD, faith is central to who we are and how we live and work together as a community. Our three-year faith theme, found in 1 Corinthians 13:13, has served us beautifully as we navigate the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic in order to create remarkable learning opportunities for our over 56,000 students.
The importance of faith, hope and love are also central to Pope Francis’ Lenten message for 2021. He speaks to the hope that we be increasingly concerned with “speaking words of comfort, strength, consolation and encouragement.” Pope Francis also speaks to the imperative of loving each other by, “caring for those who suffer or feel abandoned and fearful because of the COVID-19 pandemic.” “In order to give hope to others, it is sometimes enough simply to be kind, to be ‘willing to set everything else aside in order to show interest, to give the gift of a smile, to speak a word of encouragement, to listen amid general indifference.’” He further states that, “Love rejoices in seeing others grow.” I encourage everyone to read Pope Francis’ full message. which can be found in its entirety.
“Love rejoices in seeing others grow”
On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I would like to thank our administrative, exempt, teaching, support and caretaking staff who have exemplified the intent of the words behind Pope Francis’ Lenten message, not only during the Lenten season, but every day. The board would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank our CCSD families, who have supported the learning of our students in a most unusual year. The faith, hope and love that you have shared with your children and with our district is central to our success.
As we prepare for Easter Sunday, when we celebrate the risen Christ, may we continue to focus our efforts through the lens of faith, hope and love. On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I extend to you and your family kind wishes for a blessed Easter.
— Mary Martin , Board of Trustees Chair
Chief Superintendent Dr. Bryan Szumlas
Easter is a time of hope, renewal and new beginnings. In a world where COVID-19 continues to be a reality in our schools, it is more important than ever to embrace our faith during these uncertain and sometimes dark times. With many concerns on everyone’s hearts and minds, it is easy to lose sight of our spirituality and commitment to God. However, while many things around us are on pause, this may be the ideal opportunity to refocus our gaze and renew our dedication to spiritual growth.
Hope is a gift of God, which grows out of faith
Easter is a reminder that we are all called to be faithful servants to God. We live our faith by showing love and respect for others, being role models, obeying God’s word, standing firm in our beliefs, as well as showing kindness, compassion and forgiveness. Easter is also an occasion for renewing hope, something that we all need in order to overcome life’s challenges.
Hope is a gift of God. Hope, which grows out of faith, is steadfast trust in God that he will fulfill his promises and will give us the grace to merit eternal life. To live in hope, is to keep our gaze on Christ and to live with the expectation that we will encounter Jesus in prayer, scripture, sacrament and community. Hope is also the art of living as people of hope who share this gift with others by being witnesses to the tender mercy and love of God.
While COVID-19 has affected our lives and daily routines in ways we could have never imagined, I’m proud of our community and how we’ve stayed strong and united as we face challenges and look ahead with hope to a brighter future.
This Easter, as you connect and observe this holy time with your family, I hope you will also take a moment to reflect on what you are hopeful for and how you can renew your faith and commitment to God. Masses can be still accessed online on the Roman Catholic Diocese of Calgary website. Have a blessed Easter.
— Dr. Bryan Szumlas, Chief Superintendent