The CRJ Corporate Work Study program gives students the opportunity to experience many different professional workplaces. Thanks to a new partnership with the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, 89 students are working at 19 area Catholic elementary schools. Through these school-based work placements, the students gain professional experience in the educational field. CWSP Director Amy Leahy said, "The goal in starting up the partnership was to showcase careers in education, whether that was teaching in the classroom or in administrative leadership opportunities."

Students have enjoyed interacting and working with younger students. Senior Nehemiah said, "The educational setting gives me a chance to work in so many different areas of education. I see myself in some of the younger kids that I am able to help in the classrooms. It has been a very rewarding experience that has made me consider becoming a teacher."

The Archdiocese has embraced the opportunity to partner with CRJ through the work study program. Dr. Kathleen Cepelka, Superintendent of Catholic Schools for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee praised the partnership as mutually beneficial. "This provides insights for our Catholic school communities into the marvelous mission of Cristo Rey and similarly allows CRJ students to more deeply understand and experience the culture of our Christ-centered Catholic schools."
The Most Reverend James Schuerman (left) presided over the Altar Dedication Ceremony on Oct. 26th.
Gathering around a table for a meal has held special significance throughout human history. I can vividly remember from my childhood the extended family gatherings at my grandparents’ home. I had a large extended family so it was always boisterously joyful and full of inviting, rich, and tasty food. Whether it was Christmas, Easter, the fourth of July, or simply a visit to see my grandparents, I can remember that these occasions always included special meals around the dinner table. I can still remember the tradition of the lamb cake at Easter time. My brothers, sister, and I always jockeyed for the pieces with the jelly bean eyes or nose!

On Tuesday, October 26th at Cristo Rey Jesuit’s Chapel of the Holy Crown, we formally dedicated our school’s table, the altar in our chapel, as a place where our Cristo Rey Jesuit family will gather for a spiritual meal. I was particularly drawn into the ceremony when Bishop Schuerman lit a large bowl of incense placed on the altar. The aroma of the incense engaged all who were gathered in the chapel to witness the altar dedication. As the plume of incense rose into the air, I couldn’t help but reflect on this time of year when we remember on All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days all those loved ones who impacted our lives and have died. Specifically, I recalled with fondness the memories of my relatives who were present at those family times when we gathered around the table for a special celebration.

Dia De Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a Mexican tradition celebrated at the beginning of November which rekindles the special memories we have of our deceased loved ones. Our students have worked hard to build a beautiful memorial to those loved ones who have passed to us our traditions, values, and cultures and are deceased. The table that is constructed as part of this memorial is meant to invite the memories we cherish of those who have died to return to our consciousness, as they are always part of us spiritually. 

Even as the times change, gathering around the table for a meal continues to be a timeless practice that binds us together. The altar that we dedicated in our chapel serves as a special table around which all are invited to gather. It invokes the generations of people over 2,000 years who modeled for us the customs and traditions of our faith. It is a table that will be central to special milestone moments in our students’, staff members’, and guests’ faith journeys. As Cristo Rey, or Christ the King, it is a place where we can encounter Jesus, our king, in a very real way. Indeed, when we gather around the altar we are united in a special way with those who do the same as us in our chapel, around the world, and throughout history. We are blessed that our Cristo Rey family is at the table and part of this big family celebration!
Cristo Rey Jesuit Boys Soccer and Girls Volleyball earned the Lake City Conference Championship this fall. The boys soccer title resulted from an 11-1 winning season and the girls dominated the conference with a 10-1 conference record. Additionally, Senior Jonathan Monreal (midfielder) was named Conference Player of the Year.

“Coach Rich Dorn and his staff have developed such a solid culture with the team and that’s why they were able to outperform outside expectations - because Coach Dorn holds them to already high standards,” said athletic director Reese Dziedzic. Week after week, the boys soccer team climbed the local rankings and featured multiple student athletes highlighted by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Phoenix Field played host to conference rivals Augustine Prep and St. Anthony that drew more than 1,000 fans per game. Dziedzic said, “This was the first “real” year with an actual fall season and a full schedule, and it was electric to see so many fans show up and support these student athletes.
Girls volleyball followed a similar script of outperforming expectations after losing 9 seniors to graduation. "Head coach Katelyn Hegewald and the girls built a community and a sisterhood this year. To see the team really come together as a family, it was amazing to be a part of, and I’m really proud of these girls,” coach Jack Nash said.

While upperclassmen may have been limited, the volleyball team had plenty of guidance thanks to Trailblazer alumni with four CRJ alumni serving as assistants on the coaching staff. “For our alumni to be playing an active role with our current students - serving as leaders and mentors - speaks to the quality of the community we have here," Nash added. “To be conference champions was just spectacular! As a coach, I care more about the lessons they learn through the sport, but to have that success on the court was equally rewarding.”

Congratulations to both the girls volleyball and boys soccer teams on their conference championships. We look forward to much success for these dedicated athletes.

Milwaukee Stars Merengue is sold out for 2021! If you're unable to attend, you are still able to support Cristo Rey Jesuit students by making a donation or voting for your favorite dancer by clicking on the button below. Each vote puts your favorite dancer closer to becoming the Merengue Champion and helps raise funds to benefit Cristo Rey Jesuit High School's rigorous academics, innovative Corporate Work Study Program and faith formation.
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