Catholic Schools Week Mass With Bishop Malooly

MRS. MARIE FLYNN '80
"My name is Mrs. Flynn and I am proud to be in a Catholic school. Are Catholic Schools important to me…Oh my goodness, yes.

I attended Saint Patrick’s Elementary School in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, Saint Mark’s High School, Class of 1980 – I’ll let you do the math – and Villanova University. I have worked at eight different Catholic elementary and high schools in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Florida and Maryland. I think Mr. Bayhan may have me beat in that area.

To say that Catholic Schools have shaped who I am is an understatement. They are both my roots and my wings. They have given me a foundation – an academic foundation that enabled me to not only feel prepared for college, but actually be prepared for college and beyond, a social foundation that not only helped me make friends while at school but helped me discover life-long companions who continue to challenge and accompany me on the journey of my life, and a spiritual foundation – one that has shaped, empowered, supported and sustained me through life’s joys and hardships.

And, if that isn’t enough, Catholic Schools have given me a place to soar as a teacher, musician, colleague, friend, wife, and mom, place where I can continue to share all that God has given me…and thank God for all that I have by living my life as part of a Catholic School."

JOSH TAYLOR '18
"My name is Josh Taylor and I am proud to attend a Catholic school. To be apart of a Catholic school has brought me a sense of belonging. In my 6 years of public school I felt different and unwanted. When I started going to a Catholic school I felt like I had found a true place for me to grow. One moment in particular that highlights this is my first time participating in theater and chorus. It was the first practice for the musical and I was just hiding in the background. Then a senior came up and told me to join their conversation because they were interested in what I had to say. They told me to join chorus, so I did. They welcomed me, and because of that, chorus has become a family for me."

PATRICIA HANKOUA '20
"My name is Patricia Hankoua and I am proud to attend a Catholic school. My mother instilled the importance of Catholic schooling for me from day one. From kindergarten to high school, she made sure that the school I went to had a strong foundation of Catholic values. I believe it was because she felt as though being in that environment would not only help me flourish as a student but also as a Catholic. I never really realized how much of a blessing it was until I came to Saint Mark’s. Here I see it in the way that I have formed friendships with ease, or in the way I see random acts of kindness happen every day, or even in the way the faculty members show that this is more than just a job for them in the way they care. I have been taught to not only be a good person to better our community and also to better the world. So if I could ask you all to take one thing away from this, it would be to not take for granted the gift our parents gave us by putting us in Catholic schools; the benefits are endless. You may not realize it now but we are better people because of it."

EMMA SAXTON '19
"My name is Emma Saxton and I am proud to attend a Catholic school. Coming to St. Mark's was an easy decision for me and one that I will always be proud of. As the sixth Saxton to walk these floors I know that my family is proud too. I've gone to public school, private school, and I am now in my seventh year at a Catholic school. Being at a Catholic school doesn't mean praying everyday or going to Mass, it means being in an environment where people care about you and about being part of a community where people act with strong values and compassion. We are free to pray and ask others to pray for our family and friends, as I am today for Father Nick Waseline at Saint Anthony’s and his battle with cancer. So with that I would like to thank Teachers, Staff and Administrators at St. Mark's for inspiring me to create a better world, one more pleasing to God and more helpful to others."

WILL HOFFMAN '18
My name is Will Hoffman and I am proud to attend a Catholic school. My time in Catholic school has meant a lot to me and my family. Being the youngest of four to go through St. Mary Magdalene and Saint Marks, we have all been blessed with the opportunity to grow in our faith through our school. The experiences that my family has shared through this school will leave lasting memories and taught us things that we will never forget. I'm also thankful for the opportunity to continue to grow in my faith with my peers, my extended family, as one community.

HARLEY MONTGOMERY '17
My name is Harley Montgomery and I am proud to attend a Catholic school. Having gone to Catholic school my whole life, I have always felt like there is a place to turn to if I need and that I'm always welcomed. My connection to my faith is due in part to being a Catholic school student. I remember the day in third grade when our priest came in asking for people to become alter servers. I was so excited for this opportunity and to bring the forms home to my mom. Little did I know this was just the beginning of the service that I would give to my church; I was even awarded the St. Timothy award last year by Bishop Malooly for all my service. People in my parish thank me and my mom for our service, but I am just happy I can make a difference and be a positive role model for the younger kids in my parish. Being a part of a Catholic school gave me my start in serving others and I am thankful that I have a place where I feel like I belong.
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