House Juana

Written by Anne-Sophie Gray

Juana

The House of Juana is named after Juana de Austria, a princess who demonstrated strong Jesuit identity. She completed St. Ignatius’s spiritual exercises and is the only woman to have taken Jesuit vows. The trait for our house is humility. Humility means being humble. When you show humility you do not brag or say that you are better than anyone else. Showing humility is important to me because it shows that you care for others, not just yourself. The students at Holy Trinity can show humility in a number of ways. An eighth grader might show humility by being a good sport even when they lose the spelling bee to a younger student. A first grader showing humility would look different. They might show humility by being calm and respectful to their classmates, instead of trying to steal their classmates’ attention.

Our house animal is a frog. We are the Juana frogs because frogs transform over time from a tadpole to a frog. This is similar to our founder’s transformation from a princess to a Jesuit. Frogs are often overlooked for their strengths because they are small. This makes them the perfect mascot for the humble Juana house! 

My favorite things about our house are two of the teachers in Juana, Ms.Nolan and Mr.Singleton. They are very fun and get everyone excited about our house.  They had great ideas for celebrating our house day. There were frogs hidden around the school, in all of the house colors. If students found the frog that matched their own house color, they house earned points. The school was covered with green decorations and students wore green with their uniforms. A member of the Juana house got to spin the points wheel to earn extra points for our house. It was a really great day!

House Day

Dorothy_Day,_1916_(cropped)

House Day

Written by Stella Maloney

The House of Day was established in recognition of Dorothy Day. Day was an amazing Catholic role model, who advocated for the poor, women, and for peace. Constantly putting others’ needs before her own, she never quit. She was even arrested several times, and went even further to prove her point by going on a hunger strike after being arrested for protesting for women’s right to vote. The House of Day will be celebrated on November 7th and on this day the whole school will celebrate our house and Dorothy Day, regardless of what house they are in. The Bison is our house mascot, and it symbolizes gentleness along with stubbornness and determination. Just like the bison, Dorothy Day was extremely determined to spread her message to everyone around her and promote equality. But, while doing this she was still a gentle and kind person, making sure to give back to those in need. Gratitude is the quality of being thankful, and the House of Day’s main goal is to promote gratitude throughout Holy Trinity. There are many ways to show gratitude, whether it is doing service to show your thanks to the people around you, giving back the favor if someone does something kind for you, or just simply saying thank you. It is extremely important to me to always show my gratitude for my friends, family, teachers and classmates so that they know that everything they do for me never goes unnoticed. One of my favorite things about the new house system is that it brings the whole school together. By this I mean that many people, including me, only know a few people outside of their grade. But now many different grades are getting to know each other and we all have something to root for, a house. 

 

Works Cited

“Dorothy Day.” Biography, A&E Television Networks, 24 Sept. 2015, http://www.biography.com/writer/dorothy-day. Accessed 7 Sept. 2019.

A New Start And A New System

Welcome to the 2019-2020 school year, Titans! This year is already shaping up to be a great one. Everyone is ready for a new, fresh start and excited for the new house system that Holy Trinity has implemented. Each student and staff member has now been sorted into one of six houses, inspired by great Catholic and Jesuit leaders from throughout history. Students have started earning points for their houses and are beginning to build bonds with their fellow house members. We can’t wait to see how this system grows over the year!

Our six houses are The Arrupe House, Becraft House, Day House, Juana House, Romero House and Xavier House. Below you will find a brief biography of each founder along with each house trait. In the coming weeks students from each house will share what it means to be a member of their house.

  • Arrupe House-
    • Founder: Pedro Arrupe was a Spanish Jesuit Priest with a heart for refugees who served as the Superior General for the Jesuits in Japan. After the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, he cared for 150 sick and wounded Japanese. In 1980 he started the Jesuit refugee service, serving Vietnamese refugees. The organization has now served over 40 millions refugees from around the world.
    • Trait: Compassion
  • Becraft House-
    • Founder: Anne Marie Becraft was a lifelong educator, teaching in Washington D.C. and Baltimore. At just 15 she started the Georgetown Seminary, a day and boarding school for young black girls in The District. She eventually left the school and when she was 26, became one of America’s first black nuns, joining the Oblate Sisters of Providence. Georgetown University recently named a building after Becraft.
    • Trait: Perseverance
  • Day House-
    • Founder: Dorothy Day was a Catholic convert who felt God’s calling to serve the poor. She was the co-founder of the Catholic Work Movement, a radical but non-violent movement which provided service to the poor and homeless and took political action on their behalf.  Her canonization is currently being considered by the Church.
    • Trait: Gratitude
  • Juana House-
    • Founder: Joanna of Austria is the first and only female member of the Society of Jesus. After the death of her husband she was expected to take Franciscan religious vows, but felt called to the Jesuit community instead. The Jesuits had never accepted females, but she persisted in her efforts and ended up taking Jesuit vows under a male name.
    • Trait: Humility
  • Romero House-
    • Founder: Saint Oscar Romero was a social activist and Archbishop of San Salvador. He stood up for the poor and voiceless and passionately denounced the persecution of members of the Catholic Church in El Salvador. In 1980 he was assassinated while celebrating mass and was canonized in 2018.
    • Trait: Justice
  • Xavier House-
    • Founder: Saint Francis Xavier was one of the first members of the Society of Jesus and was the first Jesuit missionary. He spent most of his life as a missionary in Japan and is credited with developing the early Jesuit mission approach. He was canonized in 1622.
    • Trait: Courage

Magis – More

“… looking at myself, [I consider] what I have done for Christ, what I am doing for Christ, what I ought to do for Christ.” — Spiritual Exercises [53]

The Ignatian word “Magis” literally means “more”. In our world, where people are always looking for more in an earthly sense, it is important to be specific about what the word means in a Jesuit sense. Magis is not about more for the sake of more. Not more production, not more money, not more praise, not more to do. Rather, it is about more faith, more love, more patience, more grace, more glory to God. Magis is about quality, not quantity.

Looking around our school, there are examples everywhere of teachers and students living out Magis in so many ways. A few of them are highlighted below.

 

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More Faith – Third Grade Prayer Corner
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More Love- Pre K Kindness Board
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More Service – 4th Grade Coffee Cart to Support Refugees

Keeping God at the Center – Cura Personalis from a Parent’s Perspective

Written by Erin Greene, Kindergarten Parent
Our hearts are restless until they rest in you.
St. Augustine

 

Like many of us, I’m pulled in too many directions. My little ones tug at my heartstrings when they are disappointed or sad. I can’t always keep up with my email, and I’m often one step away from forgetting a water bottle, permission slip, or returning library books on time. Last week, I rolled up to school, proud of myself because I was a few minutes early for the 7:50 start time, only to realize there was no school that day! Yes, indeed. That really happened. Sometimes life is a blur. But no matter how consuming life can be, I know I need to carve out time for my prayer life, my creative life, my time with God. Cura Personalis, caring for the whole person, reminds me how essential it is to keep God at my center.

 

Cura Personalis guides me when I take care of my children. It nudges me to help them recognize the areas in their lives that bring them joy and feed their soul. Their lives are busy too. My children are blessed to be part of the Holy Trinity community and the larger Washington, DC neighborhood. They are cared for, they are challenged, and they are exposed to a broader world in the nation’s capital. But this life also comes with full days and very full schedules. Carving out time for them on the weekends to explore their passions in their own space, with less time constraints, helps them discover where their hearts are leading them. It brings them back to God and caring for the wholeness of their being.

 

My five year old loves to create inventions. We will spend hours immersed in his creative world. He leads and I support him. In these quiet moments, my message to him is, “Trust yourself. Dive into your passions. Follow your heart now and always.”

 

My two year old finds wonder in our our small backyard and nearby Rock Creek Park. When he’s out there, he’s finding God. Whether he’s gathering leaves, collecting rocks, or just digging in the dirt, his heart is happy. As we linger there a few extra moments, I hope he knows this is exactly where we should be. “Enjoy. Explore. Be you.”

 

As a family, we are all still learning how to keep Cura Personalis top of mind. Living in a way that honors Cura Personalis will be a lifelong pursuit of mine, and I hope for my children as well. But even when I stray, I know I can always come back to quiet moments with God. When God is at the center, I know I am well nourished and my family is too.

Cura Personalis from a Teacher’s Perspective

Written by Ms. Colleen Brady

On a Friday in early November, instead of quizzing my ELA students on their new vocabulary words, I walked them over to Georgetown University for a session of Christian meditation. During the 12 minutes of silence, some students delighted in the peace, others had a hard time with the stillness, and one even fell asleep in the quiet. When we walked back, all expressed gratitude and told me how much they needed that time to let stress melt away and pray. I know that vocabulary practice is very important for my students intellectually, but I also want to show them that caring for their spiritual, social, emotional, and physical well-being is equally important. This is one way I practice cura personalis as a teacher.

Cura Personalis is an Ignatian value that refers to caring for the whole person – mind, body and spirit. Jesuit schools seek to nurture and promote the best in everyone, and help each one to reach his or her greatest human potential. Cura Personalis is bringing snacks for my hungry eighth graders. It’s going to chapel mass and praying the examen at the beginning of 7th period. It’s collaborating with other teachers and communicating with parents. It’s being present and attentive to what students need most in the moment. Cura Personalis is not easy, and I am not perfect at living it out, but most of all, I hope my students know I deeply care about them, wholly.  

I aim to encourage my students every day and help them recognize that their value does not lie solely in their intellect, but also in their talents, personalities, desires, hearts, faith, and ability to be a good friend to others. Cura personalis also implies a commitment to inclusivity and caring for students of all background and experiences. In my teaching, I try to help students learn about each other’s different traditions, experiences, and cultures to help build a more inclusive community. Our library is full of diverse books that help students practice empathy and understanding. My hope is that through their Jesuit education, students will learn to live out cura personalis with one another.

Olivia’s Take on Cura Personalis

written by Olivia Maguire

 

Cura Personalis translates to, care for the whole person. Cura Personalis is one of the six Ignatian Values. As a Jesuit School, Cura Personalis is a big deal. The big question is, why is it such a big deal?  Holy Trinity talks a lot about service. Holy Trinity is dedicated to making the world a better place.  No matter big or small,  HTS encourages people to help out our community. Things as small as smiling at people or picking up trash, to service trips! This is one way we practice Cura Personalis as a school. We are caring for all those around us and the Earth.
When we are caring for the whole person, it means that we are appreciating other people’s talents, abilities,  personalities, desires, hearts, faith, and minds because they are all equally worthy of care and attention.  This all relates to our Christian faith and Catholic Education. When we learn we learn with our head, but Cura Personalis wants us to learn with our heart and respect the whole body. When we pray, learn and eat healthy we are practicing Cura Personalis. This is because we are caring for our faith by talking to God through prayer. We are caring for our minds by learning new information to help and find answers to our questions. Finally, when we are eating healthy, we are caring for our physical needs. These are some ways that you can practice Cura Personalis in your own life!