Our Lady of the Evergreens School was named in honour of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Mary is a model of discipleship and a sign of hope for our faith journey. The evergreen is also a symbol of hope.
Background Information: Mary, the Mother of Jesus, has been given many titles including Queen of Heaven and Our Lady. The Church teaches that Mary was immaculately conceived (born without sin) because her role in God’s plan of salvation was to be the Mother of God’s Son. When approached by the angel Gabriel, Mary humbly accepted God’s will for her and brought forth our Saviour. Mary also accompanied Jesus to the cross and was present when the disciples received the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:14). Mary is greatly respected for her humility and holiness and for modelling the way of discipleship. The Church also teaches that Mary is the Mother of the Church, the mystical body of Christ. This means that Mary is our Mother. In Mary, the perfect disciple who achieved the heavenly reward of eternal life, we find hope for our journey of faith.
In Calgary, the neighbourhood of Evergreen borders Fish Creek Provincial Park, one of the largest urban parks in North America. Of the trees found in the park, evergreens are represented by the White Spruce. The White Spruce is a native North American tree which is both common and widespread in the Calgary area. The needles of the White Spruce are pointed, but not sharp, and project from all sides of the branch similar to a bottle brush. The White Spruce is an important timber tree in Canada as the wood is used extensively for the pulp and paper industry. The Aboriginal people laced the birch bark of canoes with the roots of the White Spruce because they were so pliable. In Christianity, the evergreen symbolizes hope as it remains green all year long.
Evergreens are traditionally used in our celebration of Christmas and have become associated with gift-giving. The Christmas tree has also become a symbol of Christ’s resurrection as it is cut down and erected again in our homes.
Our Lady of the Evergreen School is a place where faith and hope are cultivated.