Lent 2019: Here is My Heart Lord

On March 6, Chaminade marked the beginning of Lent with Ash Wednesday prayer services on both campuses. “Here is My Heart Lord” is our Lenten theme for 2019. As we journey through this season of Lent, we are asked to recommit ourselves to God’s merciful love, and act upon our apostolic call to pray, give alms, and fast during this sacred liturgical season.

To help us on our Lenten journey, Chaminade will host events on each campus which our families are encouraged to attend.

LIFE Mass – March 10 at 5:00 p.m.
• West Hills Campus Condon Center Chapel

Sacrament of Reconciliation
• Chatsworth Campus: March 14-15 at  2:20 p.m.
• West Hills Campus: April 11-12 time TBD

Lenten Prayer Service
• Chatsworth Campus: “Stations of the Cross” March 20 at 9:15 a.m.
•  West Hills Campus: “Last Seven Words of Jesus” April 17 at 10:00 a.m.

Founders Day Mass – April 4 at 9:30 a.m.
• West Hills Campus

Last Supper Para Liturgy – April 8 at 10:15 a.m.
• Chatsworth Campus

In the following weeks, Campus Ministry will offer opportunities for our students to serve, including an apostolic works sock drive, service Saturday for middle school students, a service trip to the L.A. Regional Food Bank, and spring cleaning drives throughout March and April for the high school students. Additionally, on March 29, Chaminade will once again host the Special Olympics on the West Hills campus.

More Information regarding campus-specific Lenten activities can be found online and through the Chaminade This Week email newsletter. We invite our Chaminade community to take advantage of these great opportunities to help you in your Lenten journey.

Catholic Schools Week Comes to an End; Three Employees are Honored

Middle school students making blankets at SHINE Faith Sharing Lunch. Photo by Instagram @campusminnadems

Another successful Catholic Schools/Marianist Heritage Week has concluded at Chaminade College Preparatory. Students on both campuses enjoyed fun-filled, mission-driven activities. Middle schoolers enjoyed Dr. Seuss-themed special dress days and celebrated the week with an NJHS Bake Sale, Mix It Up Lunch, Faith Sharing, house picnic, and energetic Faith Rally.

High school students on a service trip with Habitat for Humanity. Photo by Instagram @nadeactivities

High school students commemorated the week with Random Acts of Kindness Lunch, an Instagram contest, the annual Fr. Chaminade Contest, a service trip with Habitat for Humanity, and an exciting Formation in Faith Rally.

Marianist Educators honored three fellow employees with the Blessed William Joseph Chaminade Award: Kelly Benning and Paul Sauter from West Hills, and Oscar Perez from Chatsworth. Each recipient was nominated by his or her peers for demonstrating one or more of the Characteristics of Marianist Education: integral, quality education; family spirit; adaptation and change; formation in faith; and service, justice, and peace.

Pictured left to right: Luis Guerra, Kelly Benning, Paul Sauter, and Bro. Adam Becerra, fsp. Photo by Pam Liceralde

Kelly Benning is the librarian at the West Hills campus. She makes the library an innovative learning space for discernment, reflection, and academic research. Under her leadership, the library is a gathering place where students are challenged to consider how they can contribute to society with their gifts and talents. 

Paul Sauter, biology teacher and science department chair on the West Hills campus, demonstrates compassion, humor, and love in all he does. Paul serves through the Kairos retreat every year and has coached in the past. He is always willing to give of himself to serve his students.

Pictured left to right: Nikki Russ, Oscar Perez, and Fr. Josephraj Rymond, S.M. Photo by Tommy Smeltzer

Oscar Perez is on the facilities staff at the Chatsworth campus. With a positive attitude, Oscar imparts warmth, understanding, and generosity in all he does, from setting up for Masses and rallies, to finding solutions to complicated campus problems. His work is precise, accurate, and done with a smile. Dedicated to helping students, faculty, and staff, Oscar has a hand in everything on the Chatsworth campus.

Students Commissioned to be Agents of Change

Blessed William Joseph Chaminade said, “We are all missionaries, and we consider ourselves on a permanent mission.” In September, high school and middle school students were commissioned to start or continue their journey of service in a special Apostolic Works Commissioning Mass held on each campus. Throughout each Mass, the message was clear, as a community we must continue the mission of the apostles and follow in the path of Mary and become agents of change.

“No matter what type of service you choose, no matter what organization you help, you are making a difference to someone,” said Chaminade student Gia Frank ’23 during her presentation at the middle school Mass. Frank continued to reflect upon her first experiences as a fifth-grader visiting Chaminade for the first time and how one student recognized her trepidation and made an effort to make her feel welcomed. “I just came here in search of a school, but I found a home and family I didn’t know was missing from m­­y life. I have witnessed the power of God’s love through this community, and it is a powerful thing.”

The Mass was not only a call to action but also a reminder that God has blessed us all with unique talents and gifts to help one another. “If there is one thing God gave you that is powerful and cannot be overlooked, it’s your voices. What you do well, and what you are passionate about, is what makes you special. It is what makes you…you, and it is what makes you a servant leader.”

The Apostolic Works Service Learning Program is rooted in the Catholic, Marianist tradition of being in alliance with Mary’s mission: to nurture Christ in others and communities to transform the world by giving service to those in need through various methods of outreach. It empowers students to discern their gifts and apply them to organizations that expose them to life situations different from their own to become agents of change. From middle school through high school, students will experience a progressive growth in their responsibility of service from one grade level to the next. The program also spurs students to question why service and transformation are necessary, what changes have to be made, who needs to be served, what motivations move one to serve, and how adaptations and changes might be practically affected. Students discover an opportunity to connect the knowledge or skill they learn in a classroom with how it can be used to help others or transform conditions in their community.

Click here if you would like to read Gia Frank’s full reflection.

Center for Excellence Registration is Open

Registration for Chaminade College Preparatory’s Center for Excellence (CCE) is now open. It is the perfect place for students to spend their summer learning and growing. With classes in the morning and afternoon, CCE offers programs, for students entering grades 1-12, designed to inspire, engage, and empower young minds.

Students entering grades 1 through 12 will enjoy expanding their horizons through the Center for Excellence summer programming. For students entering Chaminade’s 6th grade, Eagles Take Flight will prepare them academically and introduce them to Chaminade’s middle school community; while students entering high school grades can acquire valuable skills in High School Study and Success Skills, and students entering 12th grade can prepare for college applications in the College Application Bootcamp. CCE also offers robotics programs on both campuses with a brand-new class on the West Hills campus focusing on electronics and programming.

This year, CCEs summer Ste[+a]m Academy, for grades K-5, will once again be powered by STEMscopes. With a different curriculum each week, there is no repetition. Each STEMscope module engages students in cross-disciplinary activities that build knowledge and skills in areas including computer science, engineering, and biomedical science. Students can come for one week, or all five weeks.

The Great Books Academy, for grades K-5, is one of CCEs most popular programs aimed at educating the whole child. The Great Books curriculum is the cornerstone of the academy and is specially designed to help students become independent readers and thinkers by focusing on reading comprehension, critical thinking, vocabulary, and writing.

Summer is also an excellent time for students of all ages to pursue their creative passions in visual and performing arts. And children ages 5 to 15 can join CCEs Sports Camps and explore athletics from football to basketball as well as soccer, baseball, volleyball, fencing, and more. The West Hills campus also hosts Varsity Camps, which gives students the chance to work with Chaminade’s varsity head coaches, players, and former athletes with college and professional experience.

For more information visit chaminade.org/centerforexcellence or click here to register today.

Easter Message

Lent is a liturgical season that reminds Christians of the importance of service, sacrifice and dedicating our lives to Christ. As we approach Easter, we enter into the holiest times of our Catholic tradition: Holy Week. This is a time in which we reflect upon and enter deeper into the paschal mystery of Jesus Christ: his life, death, and resurrection.

We pray that each of you may experience the love and joy that comes with Jesus’ resurrection as you rejuvenate your life and bring hope to others. May God’s blessings be upon each of you and your families as you celebrate the gift of God’s amazing grace!