April 24, 2018 | SEND NEWS ITEMS TO: mesa@sistersofmercy.org
  Campus Ministry Cohort Meets
Campus Ministers from Mercy Schools gathered in St. Louis on April 16 and 17. The gathering included prayer, conversation and community as the ministers got to know one another and share experiences from their school ministry. The focused discussions dwelled on “how do you balance being Catholic and Mercy” in your school community? Lots of wonderful conversation ensued enabling the ministers to bring new ideas back to their schools. The face-to-face experience enhanced the video conferencing experiences of the year with the ministers getting to know their colleagues in Mercy in a new way. 

Participants (pictured above) included:

Ned Berghausen, Mercy Academy, Louisville, KY; Liz Sher, Gwynedd Mercy Academy Elementary, Spring House, PA; Judi Griggs-Dennis, Mercy High School, Farmington Hills, MI; Greg Soltis, Waldron Mercy Academy, Merion, PA; Stephen Fromhold, Gwynedd Mercy Academy, Gwynedd Valley, PA; Gabe Germann, Mount de Sales Academy, Macon, GA; Ashley Miller, Mercy High School, Omaha, NE; Regina Ward, RSM, MESA; Mary Colby, Mount Mercy Academy, Buffalo, NY; Hannah Tatar, Mercyhurst Preparatory School, Erie, PA.

--Submitted by Sr. Regina Ward, RSM
Mercy Education System of the Americas
Four Mount Saint Mary Academy Educators Named Mercy Associates
Congratulations to the following four Mount faculty members who were named Mercy Associates on Sunday, April 15, at Georgian Court University: Kathleen Burke '04 (theology), Isabel Gachko (Director of Theology/Campus Minister), Jacqueline Conti Muratore '01 (mathematics) and Steven Muratore (mathematics). 

“The four of us have been meeting with two mentors and guest speakers to learn more about the legacies of Catherine McAuley and Frances Warde, the inspiring history of the Sisters of Mercy, the Mercy charism, and the social justice advocacy of the Sisters,” shared Mrs. Burke.

“We felt instantly welcomed by our mentors Pat Burke and Kathy West, and their love and support has been a gift throughout the process,” she said.

“On Sunday, in the presence of God, Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Associates, family, and friends, we signed a covenant with the Sisters,” noted Mrs. Burke, “promising to participate in the social justice mission of Mercy and join the entire community in personal prayer and days of spiritual enrichment.

“Becoming a Mercy Associate has been an incredibly rewarding and affirming process. I felt such an outpouring of grace and blessings from God, the Sisters, and the Associates at the Covenant Ceremony. It was like a resounding “YES!” to a question that I didn’t even know I was asking. I am excited for my next steps on this journey as a partner in the mission of Mercy,” she concluded.

Ms. Gachko added, “It is an honor for me to have become a Mercy Associate. The Sisters of Mercy and Associates that have touched my heart are an inspiration of faith, joy, and love. I hope that I can serve faithfully in Mercy and offer the hospitality that I have been shown.”

“Mercy Associates are called to deepen their spirituality and extend mercy to others. Mercy Associates and Sisters of Mercy support one another in prayer, ministry, and community,” said Mrs. Muratore. “We all share a desire to become more compassionate women and men by witnessing to God’s mercy in the world.” 

As a graduate of the Mount, I have felt a connection to the Sisters of Mercy since I was a teenager,” she added. “Women like Sister Mary Gomolka, Sister Irene Nebus, Sister Karen Horan, and Sister Lisa Gambacorto (just to name a few) have helped shape who I am today, and for that I am forever grateful. Now as a faculty member, I want to give back to the Sisters and share in their mission as a Mercy Associate – especially through prayer, the education of women, and service to others.”

"It is important to continue the traditions and missions of the Sisters of Mercy,” added Mr. Muratore. “Seeing first-hand the passion and involvement that the Sisters of Mercy have in the surrounding community inspired me to become a Mercy Associate.”

“We need to keep the legacy of Catherine McAuley alive in the present day and to spread her message of hope and mercy through action. I look forward to working with the Sisters and fellow Associates in shaping our community into a more compassionate and merciful one," he said.

--Submitted by Michelle H. Daino
Director of Communications
Mount Saint Mary Academy
Cristo Rey's Sister Eileen Enright, RSM, Profiled by The Sacramento Bee
Via Sacbee.com: Imagine deciding at 10 that you would dedicate your life to helping impoverished kids and then making good on that vow. Imagine believing in your childhood vow so deeply that you had the courage, at 17, to look your parents in the eye and answer, "I don't know," when they tearfully asked when they would see you again.

Imagine not seeing your parents for 20 years after journeying from County Kerry, Ireland, to Sacramento so that you live your vow and help kids in poverty lead better lives.

Eileen Enright doesn't have to imagine it. She has lived this life...
Mercy High School Omaha's May Crowning Honors Mary, Students
One of the most meaningful traditions at Mercy High School, and a Catholic ritual, is the school’s May Crowning. It will be held on May 7 at 7 p.m. in Mercy’s gymnasium, 1501 S. 48th St. The ceremony honors Mother Mary in the month of May by selecting a May Queen, a senior girl who exemplifies the qualities of Mary, and having her crown Mary’s statue with a circlet of flowers. The May Queen is accompanied by a May Court, which includes representatives from each class. 

This year’s May Queen is Madeline Elsasser who is part of a family legacy at Mercy.  Her mother, Aryn Vacanti Elsasser, was a member of May Court her freshmen year and her grandmother, Teresa Vancura Vacanti graduated in 1973. She is the oldest of three children; her younger sister, Emma is a freshman at Mercy, and her younger brother, Andrew attends Holy Cross. 

--Submitted by Deborah Daley
Communications Director
Mercy High School - Omaha
St. Catherine Academy
We continue with our series of brief school profiles with St. Catherine Academy in the Bronx, New York. As always, our goal for these profiles is to support learning from one another. If you see something you want to know more about, get in touch with that school community! All MESA education ministries are listed here: http://mercyedu.org/educational-ministries.
Jane Sullivan Roberts, a partner in the law firm Major, Lindsey & Africa and wife of Supreme Court Justice John Roberts, recently remarked at an awards ceremony, "The Mercy Sisters are still quietly working miracles in the Bronx every day." She was referring to those of her alma mater, St. Catharine Academy, the 129-year-old MESA institution that serves nearly 500 young women each year. “They taught us we could do anything,” she said, and they “imparted enduring truths, that God is good and loves me, and has a plan for me, and that we are all children of God, made in his image and likeness.”

Indeed, leaders at the school are proud of its mission to prepare young women in the Mercy tradition for college success, leadership and engagement in the world community. They work daily to imbue young "Catharinites" with the core values of educational excellence, compassion and service, concern for women and women's issues, world vision and responsibility, spiritual growth and collaboration.

Learn more about the school by visiting its website and following it on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. The school's annual reports are also great chroniclers of its rich history and record of achievement.
The school operates under the leadership of President Sr. Patricia Wolf, RSM ('62) and Principal Sr. Ann M. Welch, RSM. It has been accredited by The Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools and the North Central Association Commission of Accreditation and School Improvement. St. Catharine Academy has a 100% college acceptance rate to some of the finest colleges and universities in the world. Together the classes of 2014-2017 earned over $57.3 million in academic scholarships, a testament to its record of academic achievement and the highly personalized learning environment. The school maintains a student-faculty ratio of 17:1.

In addition to taking on the characteristics of SCA's Portrait of a Graduate, Catharinites must excel in a rigorous college-prep course load with requirements in English, Modern Language
Health Education, Math
Science, Social Studies
Theology, and the Arts. Students also participate in a wide range of extracurricular activities, including one or more of the school's six sports teams. Young Catharinites are also activists. Students recently organized a letter-writing campaign on gun control that resulted in a personal visit from New York State Assemblyman Michael Benedetto.
Like many MESA schools, St. Catharine Academy enjoys a mutually beneficial relationship with its alumni, as well as with the community members. The school recently put out a call for support of its upcoming Career Day, which will take place on May 24. Students have indicated a particular interest in the field of law enforcement. Interests range from policing, detective, FBI, etc. Potential presenters should contact Sr. Pat at pwolf@scahs.org.

In addition, the school is hiring for the upcoming school year. It seeks a campus minister and a business/computer teacher.

Moreover, thanks to the school's trustees, which spearheaded a $2.5 million capital campaign, the school will begin a construction project this summer to improve its facilities. The project includes a new lobby, a new gym, elevator installation, a garden, new educational technology and upgrades to security and accessibility for the disabled.

Last year SCA established an endowment with a scholarship gift from a class of 1961 alum, and this year more alumni have announced support, including the Sr. Rhea Bean, RSM Endowed Scholarship, named in honor of SCA’s first president.
Mercy International Association invites all of us in the 40+ countries where Mercy ministers, over the next year between Earth Day 2018 and 2019, to plant or help nurture a tree wherever you are located. This is done as a sign of support for the Great Green Wall and Laudato Tree projects and of our Sisters and co-workers in Africa. MIA has committed to planting six trees in the Sacred Garden at Baggot Street.
   Good News & Great Opportunities
  • The Mustard Seed Project is a conference that explores serving students with disabilities within the Catholic school setting. This year’s theme, Moving from Inclusion to Belonging: A celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the Pastoral letter on persons with disabilities. It takes place October 8-10, 2018.
  • Our Lady of Mercy Academy Robotics Team won the Imagery Award at the FIRST Robotics competition at Hofstra University. Check out this photo gallery of the experience.
  • The 87th edition of Mercedes, the literary and arts magazine of Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women, has been awarded the rank of “Recommended for the Highest Award” by the National Council of Teachers of English. Special congratulations to faculty advisor Kirsten Jauch and student editor Alice Camaione.
  • Kaitlyn Leahy, a student at Mercy High School Middletown, launched Heart over Hunger, a t-shirt business to help fight against hunger.
  • The Institute Justice Team and Extended Justice Team encourages the Mercy community to engage in the Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, which begins in May.

Want to highlight good news from your school? Send a note to mesa@sistersofmercy.org .
             Updated Job Listings

Do you have an opportunity you'd like to highlight in an upcoming issue of MESA Flash? Email mesa@sistersofmercy.org.

We will run employment notices in MESA Flash for two weeks only. After that, you'll find older listings on our Ministry Openings webpage. That page contains links to the employment pages of MESA schools.
ism Workshop

Stability Markers, Strategic Planning and Financial Planning
June 11-12, 2018
Chicago, IL
“Partners in Ministry”

Leadership Academy
July 23-24, 2018
Baltimore, MD
Annual Administrator Meeting

October 11, 2018
Merion Station, PA
Mercy 2018 Education Conference

Hosted by Merion Mercy Academy
October 12-13, 2018
Merion Station, PA
  You are encouraged to send in information that you'd like to share through the MESA Flash. We'd love to share your good news, photos from your schools, along with tips and practical suggestions from which others in the community can learn. Email us at mesa@sistersofmercy.org.
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