News from The Atonement Academy --- Vol. 2020-2021 No.4, August 20, 2020
“Know, O Christian, that the Mass is the holiest act of religion. You cannot do anything to glorify God more, nor profit your soul more, than by devoutly assisting at it, and assisting as often as possible.”
~St. Peter Julian Eymard

More than one Academy daily Mass is now in order to keep social distancing observed. We are grateful to our pastor Fr. Mark Lewis and our parochial vicar Fr. Jon Jenkins for their commitment and flexibility during this time.
Middle and Upper Scholars assist at Holy Mass each day. The younger Crusaders also participate daily, but at a separate Mass.
Dear Academy Families,

It was quite a vision this past week to enter classrooms and see our teachers interacting simultaneously with both on-campus and remote students. For all the additional complexities our community is navigating this year, we continue to enjoy a strong start. We are thankful for the support of parents, the excitement of our young scholars, and the assiduous preparation of teachers and staff. Our goal this year remains for Atonement students to experience as little interruption to their intellectual, spiritual, and physical formation as possible, while also remaining safe and healthy.

Of course, our scholars are not the only ones experiencing a school year unlike any other. One of the great joys of being a parent comes from accompanying your child on his or her educational journey through an active partnership with his or her school. Tonight, the parents of 7th-12th grade students are invited join us in St. Anthony Hall to hear more about how they can serve as a Class Sponsor and to plan with their fellow grade-level parents.

I also know that for many of you, attending school Masses over the years has been an important part of how you connect with the Academy and with your child. Beginning Monday, we will allow up to 12 parents and younger siblings to attend each day’s school Masses. Folding chairs will be set up in the narthex. Please register at the front office at least 10 minutes prior to the start of Mass for a temperature screening and mask check. Middle and Upper School Mass begins at 9:00 a.m., while the Lower School Mass begins at 12:50 p.m. 

Thank you all for standing with us over the past days and weeks and months. Let us continue to pray for one another.

Our Lady of The Atonement—pray for us!

Your servant,

Matthew David Watson
Head of School
Electing Remote Learning for the 2nd Quarter 
While we are glad to be offering Remote Students the academic excellence an Atonement education affords, we certainly look forward to seeing them on campus again soon. As we have asked families to renew their choice to continue Remote Learning on a quarterly basis, please note that the first quarter ends on October 9th.  Families who wish to continue Remote Learning for the second quarter should email Mrs. Powell ( their intention to do so by September 25th.  
Remote Learning FAQs
Although there are no updates this week to the Remote Learning FAQs, families should be familiar with them whether or not they have chosen Remote Learning. Even Traditional Students may need to transition to Remote Learning if, for example, they are required to quarantine at any point. The latest version of the Remote Learning FAQs may be found here.
Office Hours for Remote Students
Zoom office hours provide an opportunity for Remote Students and parents to check in with teachers and ask questions about work assigned for the week. Teachers will post a link exclusively for their Remote Student office hours on the LMS. Student attendance at these meetings is entirely optional. The teachers’ office hours are listed here.


Academic Outfitters and Shoes Unlimited continue to work on replenishing their stock to accommodate our uniform needs. Academic Outfitters informed us that they are out of stock on the following items:

Skirt sizes: 8, 10, 12

Tie sizes: 12, 14, 16

Shoes Unlimited is also running low on narrow small size loafers.
The Atonement Academy will continue to accept any reasonable substitute for any uniform item out of stock. If you have any questions, email Mrs. Powell at


Our health office coordinator, Dr. Tovar, sent out an update last Friday. Please be sure to review the details and study the attachments that differentiate symptoms for COVID versus other conditions.

This excerpt summarizes our revised mask protocol:

It is best to use a 3 layers (or 2 layers with a filter in-between) cloth or similar material mask, in neutral or school colors, or disposable paper masks (no surgical N95s).  

No masks with exhalation valves or vents of any kind, even in N95s, will be permitted. 

Face shields can be worn by PK and K students (if the parent allows it), even though they are not recommended by the CDC. It is a better option for those age groups than wearing nothing (CDC recommendation) or masks, which the children keep pulling down and touching constantly. 

Thank you for partnering with us to carry forward the mission of Catholic classical education in these challenging times. Please remember that our comprehensive Safe Return Plan and all updates and revisions will always be sent first to your email inbox and then will be posted on our website at this link.

August 20
Class Sponsor Kick Off, 7:00 p.m. in St. Anthony Hall

August 28
Upper School Picture Day

Upper School Tea (2:00 p.m. in Library)

September 4
Coffee with Mr. Watson (8:00 a.m. in the Common Room)

Always check our school website for updates and details.

Academy families are always welcome to worship with us! Many of our Masses are live streamed on Facebook and YouTube. They are also uploaded to the parish website. For your ease of reference, here is our parish Mass schedule. An asterisk denotes Masses that are live streamed.

Monday through Friday: 7:00 a.m.*

Saturday: 10:00 a.m.* (Moving to 7:00 a.m. beginning in October) and 4:30 p.m. (Vigil Mass)

Sunday: 7:30 a.m., 9:00 a.m.*, 11:00 a.m.*, and 6:00 p.m.

Welcome back to school!
What’s new?
RenWeb now has a library classroom! Please enter and click on "Resources" to view our modified library procedures, passwords to our databases, and a video providing a quick overview of Renaissance and Libraryworld OPAC.
Our Library Summer Reading program was a great experience for our participants. Congratulations to our participants in the program:

Laney Campbell
Kathryn Carlin
Sofia Essex
Aaron Garza Rivera
Sebastian Garza Rivera
Ella Gorospe
Jose Maria Henriquez
Gabriela Hernandez
Emerson Horton
Matthew John
Michael John
Gianna Ku
Julia Moselina
Louise Picha
Bertie Scott
Ryan Slayden
Ty Slayden

~Mrs. Wendtland
What do you currently teach, and what do you enjoy about it?
I currently teach fourth grade, and I enjoy learning about our students, families, and our school.

 What do you most appreciate about teaching at The Atonement Academy?
I most appreciate the warm welcome I have received from staff, students, and families! I also appreciate the team work I have seen: everyone is working together to ensure the success of each student.
What are you looking forward to during the 2020-2021 school year?
I am looking forward to guiding the fourth grade students on their journey of academic and spiritual growth.

Tell us a bit about yourself: how you spend your leisure time, or what you are reading right now, or a favorite inspirational figure or quote, updates on your immediate family, or the like.
Our family just spent the last few years living in England, so we have enjoyed exploring Europe. I am currently reading The Power of Silence by Cardinal Robert Sarah. The book teaches us how practice silent in the age of technology so we be closer to God.

I graduated from The Atonement Academy in 2008, in the school's very first graduating class. Although my time at The Atonement was brief, I cherish both the memories made and the lasting friendships. Before attending The Atonement I came from a fairly large school, but with a graduating class of 12 Crusaders total, we all knew each other and we were all there for each other. Having smaller classes was definitely a very rewarding experience.

After graduation, I went to San Jacinto College for Aviation Management / Professional Pilot. Once I finished my studies, I moved back to Mexico and got my first aviation job flying an Airbus 320 for an airline named Interjet. My dream had always been to have a flying career overseas, and once I had completed the qualifications required for such opportunities, I applied for Emirates Airline. I became the third Mexican female pilot employed by the airline. I now get to call Dubai my home and fly the Airbus 380. My job has not only given me the opportunity to travel, but also to meet people from all different nations and backgrounds.

I have been around airplanes my whole life: my father who will soon retire, is an airline pilot. Before safety regulations were put in place in 2011, my father used to take me to work with him, where I was always fascinated with the flight deck. The most wonderful experience I have had so far was sharing a flight with my father. We got to "go to work" together on a six-day trip which included flying from New York City to Mexico City (photo below).

"Where are you from?" is a question that's difficult to answer as a third culture child. You are born somewhere, raised somewhere, and sometimes you do not know exactly what constitutes "home." A few years back, I came to the realization that "where I am from" and "home" is where ever my heart is. I have been "away from home" most of my life, as I have lived in a few cities in Texas, in China for about six months, in Mexico, and now Dubai. I now have my Texas family, my Dubai family and my Mexico family.

Living in so many places has taught me that friendships, if true, will remain--it doesn't matter the miles between them. Being independent and adventuresome has also taught me to be brave and not to be afraid of pursuing my dreams. Of course, at first it might sound scary, but embracing a dream is a wonderful experience, and I would not change a thing about it.

My advice to students who are beginning to plan for their college life and beyond is this: don't be afraid of change, do not be afraid of something different, and always go where your heart takes you.

These days, I enjoy my time off from work either horseback riding, paddle boarding, trail running, and the occasional dune buggy ride. The most wonderful places I've traveled are Auckland (New Zealand), Hong Kong, and Prague (Czech Republic). The latter two are pictured.

Depicted here are Mrs. Fitzgerald's kindergarteners hard at work in the classroom as well as three of them (Francis, Anna, and Baani) working from home! First graders in Mrs. Kennedy's class lined up for a quick photo on the playground, and students quickly got back into the routine for daily Mass, heading down the corridor connecting the Academy to the Church.

Additional photos include classroom shots of Mrs. Taylor's fifth grade, Mr. Sackett's fourth grade, Mrs. Garza's third grade, Mr. White's science class, and Mr. Oliveros's music class. Lastly, two of Miss Kennedy's sixth grade girls, Sophia and Ashley, were captured in action as they prepared a garden bed. The class will be working on a class garden as part of their Earth Science class.

Join us on social media! Even if you are not one to post your personal activity, it IS a vehicle for information and engagement with our school!

FACEBOOK is an online social media and networking platform that uses the written word, photos, and videos to communicate with the world.

The Atonement Academy page is our public page. Anyone with an account can see the information here, so it is great for getting information out to the public and advertising our school to interested families. "Like" us on Facebook and ask your friends to do so as well! It can be a great venue for us to share all the good news about our school community! The page is managed by school representatives.

Atonement Exchange is a private group. Participation is limited to currently enrolled families and graduates of our upper school. A series of qualifying questions must be answered before a person is allowed to join the group, and at the beginning of each school year, the group is updated with our current families. It is a great private forum for our Atonement community to exchange information, books, uniforms, photos of school sports and events, and parent formation ideas. Posts to the Exchange are managed by school personnel.NOTE: There is still time to advertise and trade or sell your gently used textbooks and uniforms on the Exchange!

Atonement Sports is a public page that is managed by our department of athletics. School sporting events and photos are promoted on this page. "Like" the page on Facebook to follow sports-related information and activities.

INSTAGRAM is an online, worldwide photo/visuals platform.
Our account is found under theatonementacademy and is managed by school personnel. It provides visual content similar to what is found on The Atonement's Facebook public page.
The Atonement Academy, founded in 1994, is a PreK through 12th grade Catholic, classical school. It is the parish school of Our Lady of The Atonement Catholic Church, one of the founding parishes of the Personal Ordinariate of The Chair of St. Peter, established by Pope Benedict XVI and located in Houston TX.