Bernie's Bark
Dear Parents-

Happy Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception!
Today we celebrate the sinless conception of Our Blessed Mother! As a solemnity, this feast celebrates a mystery of our faith where we accept that Mary was born without sin and never sinned during her lifetime. It is so fitting that we honor Our Blessed Mother during Advent as we reflect on the role of the Blessed Mother in the salvation of the world.

This year, schools in the Arlington Diocese, including SJS, switched to paperless report cards and all K-8 parents should have accessed Trimester 1 report cards on Friday, December 4, through the PowerSchool parent portal. If you were unable to access the report card, please contact our registrar, Mrs. Pearce at Even though the report cards are electronic, parents must sign the report card using the digital signature box. Please remember to sign the report card!

I also want to let Jr. High parents know that Mrs. Mary Ann Tarbell will not return this school year. She continues to recuperate at home and is doing well. Mrs. Jeanne Nickles returned to SJS several weeks ago to teach language arts, and Mrs. Kathleen Moskowitz will teach 7th grade social studies while we conduct our teacher search. Please keep Mrs. Tarbell, Mrs. Nickels and Mrs. Moskowitz in your prayers.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to accelerate in terms of cases, hospitalizations and deaths. With concern, I remind all our in-person families of the unique responsibility we share in keeping each other safe. COVID-19 tracking data this week shows that the current Virginia 7-day moving average for positivity is 9.5%. Fairfax County is averaging 356 new cases per day over the last week and the 7-day average test positivity rate is 10.12%; neighboring Loudoun County has a positivity rate of 9.4%, and Prince William County is at 12.6% positivity rate. Fairfax Health Department Director Director Dr. Gloria Addo-Ayensu tweeted: “I wish I could say that the end is in sight. But the reality is that we’re still in the midst of this fight, and there is more work to be done." #WEARAMASK

Interesting perspective on vaccination wait time for healthy adults in Fairfax County, see

I wish you continued Advent Blessings.

Please let me know if you have any questions, or if I can be of any assistance.

Go to Joseph
                              (Gen 41:55)

Denise Rutledge
 Building Wisdom and Faith Through Service to God
No School - December 11
Bishop Burbidge awarded all schools
in the Diocese a day of rest!
Friday, December 11,
St. Joseph Catholic School will be closed.

Bishop Burbidge shared, "As an expression of my great gratitude for the work of all our Catholic educators and for students who have adapted so well to new requirements, I grant you a “Bishop’s Holiday” – a day off from school for your community." Bishop Burbidge offered profound thanks and continued prayerful support.
Picture Day
New Information!
Pictures are on Wednesday, Dec. 9 for grades: K, 3, 4, 7, 8. Pictures are on Thursday, Dec. 10 for grades: 1, 2, 5 and 6. Please wear Sunday best or school uniform. No jeans or t-shirts. Pictures will be used for the SJS yearbook.

Parents use their unique codes (that were sent home on Monday) to order pictures. Text your code to: 90738 to receive more package information. You will see the option there to purchase a "credit" toward your photo purchase. In return, you will automatically get free shipping on all orders over $35. And for those parents who decide to go with Advance Pay, once the photos are published, you will receive a text letting you know that the pictures are ready to order.

Parents who have not received their unique code for ordering purposes, please email or Karen Settelmaier at

**Attention Parents of Distance Learners: Please open the link below for school picture information. Note -- you will receive your code at the appointment site.

Picture Make-up Day is scheduled for Monday, December 14.
Nurse's Corner
Dear Parents/Guardians,

IMPORTANT UPDATE: Please read the following update below from the Fairfax county health department regarding the new quarantine days.

"The Fairfax County Health Department, like the CDC and the VDH, will continue to recommend a 14-day quarantine period after the last close contact to a person with COVID-19 as the preferred option length of quarantine. Additionally, all close contacts should monitor for symptoms, wear a mask, keep distance, avoid crowds, and wash hands often for 14 days after exposure. The alternative quarantine time periods that the CDC announced should only be used in rare circumstances and would not be recommended for school settings".
Please review for yourself and with your child(ren) our mitigation plans/prevention/updates etc. Updates from our August mitigation plan are included below.
SJC Christmas Mass Schedule
Reservation Information
Reservations for Christmas Eve and Day Masses - Required
Making a Mass Reservation

Step One:
Review Directives – It is important that you review the list of Directives for Phase III Reintegration Plan prior to making your reservation.

Step Two:
Make your Reservation – No one will be admitted to the church for Mass without a reservation.

If you have Internet access, use the following email, to make your reservation for Mass. Note, if you do not have Internet access, you may call the parish office (703-880-4355 or 703-880-4304) and a member of the staff will make a reservation for you.

You will receive an email confirming that you have a reservation at a particular Mass with the number of people attending. Please bring this email with you, either paper copy or on your smart phone to Mass for entry to the Church. The entire number of people attending with you must be present to enter into the Church as a family.

Christmas Eve
Thur./ Dec. 24                       2:00 p.m.        Mass in Church
                                               4:00 p.m.       Mass in Hall  
                                               4:00 p.m.       Mass in Church – also live stream
                                               6:00 p.m.       Mass in Church
Christmas Day
Fri./ Dec. 25                          8:00 a.m.        Mass
                                              10:00 a.m.      Mass – also live stream
                                              12:00 p.m.      Mass
                                              3:00 p.m.        Mass – Spanish

Congrats, Pack 913!
St. Joseph Cub Scout’s Earn Gold x3!

Our St. Joseph Church Pack 913 Cub Scouts have earned the National Catholic Unit Excellence Gold Award for both 2019 and 2020, as well at the Boy Scouts of America Journey to Excellence Gold for 2020 for Catholic unit planning and performance.

The Pope Paul VI National Catholic Unit Excellence Award (Gold) recognizes Catholic BSA units for achievement in adult training and leadership, service by the unit, promotion of religious emblems, religious activities, vocation awareness, and growth in membership.

Scouting’s Journey to Excellence Award (Gold) is the BSA aspirational planning, performance and recognition program designed to encourage and reward success of our units. It is meant to encourage excellence and continuous improvement in providing a quality program at all levels of the BSA.

We wish to thank all the parent and parent unit volunteers for their many hours of dedication in service leading and guiding our wonderful Cub Scout youth ministry. Pack 913 Cub Scouts wish all of Saint Joseph Parish a wonderful and blessed Christmas!
Re-enrollment for 2021-2022 School Year
With our 93% retention rate, it is reasonable to streamline our re-enrollment processes. The process is restructured so that current students will be automatically re-enrolled for the 2021-2022 school year. Enrollment fees of $300 per student will be charged on February 1, 2021 from the FACTS account on file. Families in need of an extension payment plan must also contact the Business Office by January 15. Re-enrollment fees are non-refundable and non-transferable. If, for some reason, your student will not be returning to St. Joseph Catholic School, notification in writing is needed by January 15, 2021. We are confident that you will find this expedited and recurring re-enrollment process helpful. If you have any questions, please contact Debbie Millon (dmillon@sjcherndon.orgor 703-880-4355) in the Business Office.
Stay Connected!
SJS Mobile App, Twitter and Facebook

Don't forget to follow the official St. Joseph Catholic School Facebook page (sjschoolva), Twitter account (@sjschoolva), and download the mobile app from the App Store (St. Joseph Catholic School, VA)
Weekly Saints Quote
750 Peachtree Street, Herndon, VA 20170
Tel: 703-880-4350 Fax: 703-880-4320