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Communication Bulletin #14

“Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the children of God”

(Matthew 5:9).

This weekend we light the second candle on the Advent Wreath. Peace with others begins as we understand that God has called us to be peacemakers in our world. Is there somewhere in your own world where you can be a peacemaker this Christmas? Don’t miss the blessing God promises in your life as you respond to His call to be a peacemaker.

The prayer of St. Francis calls us to be peacemakers.

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; Where there is injury, pardon; Where there is doubt, faith; Where there is despair, hope; Where there is darkness, light; and Where there is sadness, joy… Divine Master; Grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love; For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.

Christmas Community Outreach:

St. Vincent DePaul Christmas Drive

Like last year, the major Christmas giving event for our school will be the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SSVP).  The SSVP at Mary Mother of God serves 107 families and 151 children in need that live within our parish boundary

This Christmas more than ever our most vulnerable neighbours are in need. Together we can make a big difference by sharing our Christmas to bring some joy into their homes.  For many of these families your donation may be the only gift they receive.

We are asking the students and families to support these neighbours in two ways: 

1.     Monetary Online Donation

o   Canada Helps – https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/society-of-st-vincent-de-paul-mary-mother-of-god-parish/

o   Monetary donations will all be used to bulk purchase gift cards from Wal-Mart for the families. 

2.     A special daily prayer of protection for all of the families SSVP serves which we will share on our morning announcements.

The SSVP donations will be gratefully received from Monday, November 30th to Monday, December 7th.  However, for your convenience the link to donate is active, so please donate now if it’s easier for you. 

This holiday season give the gift of healthy food to a Halton child to fuel their learning.

For over 2 decades Halton Food for Thought has provided Halton students with nutritious food to fuel their success.  This past year alone, 207 nutrition programs in 132 school provided 80,000 students access to healthy food at school.  Our successes have been achievable because of the over 2100 volunteers, corporate and community support and of course the HDSB & HCDSB.

As you can imagine COVID-19  has turned HFFT upside down.  With no ability to have our army of volunteers make and serve nutritious food to our children in school, we have had to pivot to ensure we continue our good work.  Halton Food for Thought has begun purchasing pre-packaged healthy food items and with the continued support of our volunteers, have been packing and delivering Grab & Go Healthy Food Boxes to participating schools.

With these unprecedented circumstances we need the support of our community, now more than ever. They say it takes a village to raise a child.  It takes a generous community to feed students healthy food they need to fuel their success.

Whether you are an individual or a local business and you have the ability help during these difficult times, your support will go a long way to continuing our mission.  You can donate directly via https://www.haltonfoodforthought.com/donate/ 

Peacemakers Food Drive

As we prepare for the season of Advent, Mrs. Baker’s Grade 2 class has organized the Peacemakers Food Drive. We are asking each class to collect canned food donations to help those in need. Donations will be collected from November 23- December 7. Most needed items are canned soup, canned meat canned pasta, pasta sauce, hot and cold cereal, jam, nut free cereal bars, pudding/fruit cups and rice. All donations will be given to the Fare Share Food Bank after the Peace candle is lit this Advent season. Thank you for helping us be Peacemakers and help those in need. 

Resources from Mary Mother of God Parish:

Mary Mother of God has graciously prepared and shared with us a page of resources compiled for kids and families for Advent this year. https://mmogp.ca/advent-resources

Flip-Give:

As the Christmas Season draws near, we know that more and more families are shopping on-line this year, especially given the current restrictions.  St. Gregory the Great has recently teamed up with “Flip-give”.  Flip-give is an app/ website that receives a commission when used and shares the profits with the school.  Many sports teams have used this service and several HCDSB schools are beginning to use this program, and it has proven to be quite successful.  Please consider downloading the app for Flip-give, inputting our code, and supporting the school, each time you make an on-line purchase. 

We earn cash back on every purchase we make all year long! All you have to do is shop anytime with the brands you already love, like Home Depot, Walmart, Amazon, Sport Chek, Indigo, Old Navy, Apple, Esso, and Loblaws. It’s completely virtual and contactless.

Join our team now and you’ll get a $5 bonus the first time you shop: https://flipgive.app.link/teams/join?fundraiser_name=St.&joincode=T5KQNG

Or enter this code: T5KQNG

If you would like to learn more, check out this 2 minute video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vTO_Qg4n80

Joy Day:

Joy Day will be taking place on Friday, December 11th. Students will be engaged in Christmas activities throughout the day. This will be a non-uniform pajama day!

Keeping Our School Community Healthy & Safe:

As you may know, Halton Region is in the Red Level (Control) of the Provincial COVID-19 Response Framework. It is strongly recommended that residents in the red control zone limit trips outside of their home:

  • Stay home, except for essential purposes such as going to work or school, buying essentials such as groceries, and attending medical appointments.
  • Maintain a physical distance of two metres (six feet) from those outside their household. Those that live alone may join one designated household.
  • Avoid all social gatherings such as play dates, birthday parties, and dinner parties with friends or family.

Checking for Signs & Symptoms of COVID-19

Please continue to check for symptoms of COVID-19 in your children, and remember to conduct a self-assessment for each child every day before sending your children to school: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/school-screening/

NEW! Halton Region Public Health is now asking students to conduct a daily self-assessment EVERY day, even on weekends. Please follow the instructions on the school screening tool. 

COVID-19 Test Results
 

  • If your child has been tested for COVID-19,they must stay home and self-isolate until the test results are received. Please do NOT send your children to school while you are awaiting their test results.
  • Ifany member of your immediate family tests positive for COVID-19, all members of the family must stay home and self-isolate, even if they have no symptoms.

Update Contact Information
If there have been any recent changes to your contact information, please update your contact information with the school office.

Up-to-date contact information is important if your child becomes ill at school and needs to be picked up, or in the case that COVID-19 contact tracing needs to occur.

Not Receiving Emails from us or HCDSB?
If you have not been receiving emails from our school or HCDSB, please first check with the school office to ensure your email contact information is correct.

If your contact information is correct, your email provider is marking emails from us as spam/junk. To correct this, please follow these instructions: https://www.hcdsb.org/DropOffLibrary/2019-11-EmailInstructions.pdf

Dress for the Weather:

The cold weather has arrived! The best way to stay warm is to dress in layers, but when layers are removed, they often get lost! Please make sure that all of your children’s clothing is clearly labeled so that if it is lost, it can be returned to them. Also, we are outside for all recesses unless the temperature drops below -20 degrees Celsius, so make sure your children have dressed appropriately with mittens, hats, scarves, boots, and snow pants if necessary! Please note any information regarding bus cancellations or school closures will be posted on the Board Website: www.HCDSB.org.

Christmas Break:

Friday, December 18, 2020 is the final day of school before Christmas Break. The school board has confirmed that this will be an early release day for students.  St. Gregory students will be released 90 minutes early this day, dismissal time will be 2:10pm.  Bus drop off times will be adjusted accordingly.  Please ensure that your family has a plan in place for after school care for your child.

Weekly Wellness Tip:

Give yourself permission to let some things go. Take a moment each morning to gather your thoughts. Make a list of all the things you have to do and want to do. Check off the two or three items that are really important to you. Let yourself entertain the idea of letting go of many of the others — or at least reducing them in some way. Many of us make our own stress by buying into the “have to’s.” 

Upcoming Events and Activities at St. Gregory the Great

Dec
7
Mon
Advent Week 2 – Virtual Liturgy
Dec 7 @ 11:20 am – 11:50 am
Dec
14
Mon
Advent Week 3 – Virtual Liturgy
Dec 14 @ 3:00 pm – 3:15 pm
Dec
18
Fri
Early Dismissal 2:10 p.m.
Dec 18 @ 2:10 pm – 3:10 pm
Jan
4
Mon
Remote Learning Begins January 4-8
Jan 4 – Jan 8 all day
Jan
6
Wed
Virtual Epiphany Liturgy
Jan 6 @ 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm
Jan
20
Wed
Grade 7 – Confirmation Retreat
Jan 20 – Jan 21 all day
Feb
1
Mon
Catholic School Council Meeting
Feb 1 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Feb
5
Fri
P.A. Day – No School for Students
Feb 5 all day
Feb
15
Mon
Family Day – Schools are Closed
Feb 15 all day

Melchionna, Ann-MarieCommunication Bulletin #14