Monday, September 10, 2018

September's Virtue of the Month: RESPECT


Be mindful that ALL people are entitled to respect because each person was made by God according to a unique plan. All of God's creatures have a right to RESPECT.
  1. Give EXAMPLES of how Jesus showed respect for all people.
  2. I am respectful when I...
  3. How do you feel when someone does not treat you with respect?
  4. In every situation remember the GOLDEN RULE: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
  5. Make a LIST of how to respect YOURSELF.
  6. Make a LIST of ways you respect OTHERS.
  7. Make a LIST of ways you respect the ENVIRONMENT.
  8. Here's a good rule to live by: Before you say anything, ask yourself: "Is it kind?" and "Is it necessary?"
  9. Create a CLASS MOTO for RESPECT.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Remembering Sister Catherine Phelps SNDdeN

The Trinity School Family gratefully acknowledges the permission of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, Ohio Province, to reprint this article first posted on the website on June 19, 2018.

Sister Catherine Phelps SNDdeN
Trinity School Principal 1971-2018
Trinity School’s front entrance is particularly beautiful at this time of year. There’s a long, winding road lined with trees that form a canopy of sunlit leaves overhead. There are banners hanging from lampposts on either side, each bearing the school’s name, logo, and one of its special commitments: e.g., to be a place to learn, to pray, to explore, to play. For all comers, young and old, traveling Trinity’s entrance road is an experience of welcome, reassurance, reflection and delight. It brings to mind the words of Jesus to his disciples: “Let the children come to me!” (Cf. Luke 16:16)

Catherine Phelps was one disciple who clearly took those words to heart throughout her 66 years in the ministry of education – at St. Martin’s in Washington, DC; and at Maryvale, St. Ursula and Trinity School in the Baltimore area. Her SND teachers from 3rd grade through high school, she wrote, “had an extraordinary influence on me.” At the heart of that influence was the way they introduced young Betty Mae Phelps to their foundress, Blessed Julie. “She became an integral part of my life,” Catherine testified at the time of her Diamond Jubilee as an SND. That joyous statement was in no way an exaggeration. In fact, it is rewarding to discover how St Julie’s charism quietly inhabits the language used by professionals relatively unacquainted with our foundress to describe Catherine’s person and achievements. There is a remarkable resonance!

There is no doubt that Catherine excelled as a teacher and a principal. That excellence came to be highly regarded, not just by her ND sisters, but in the larger world of education as well - witness her induction into the Howard County Women’s Hall of Fame (2011). An article published by Baltimore’s Catholic Review Online at the time of that award begins as follows: “As president of Trinity School in Ellicott City, Sister of Notre Dame de Namur Catherine Phelps has never chased accolades.” The writer goes on to capture the vision and goals that drove Catherine’s pursuit of excellence: “My main joy and what motivates me is the children,” one quotation reads. She acknowledges the “hard work” involved, but stresses how “privileged” she feels “to be working with children in a school community” like Trinity: “It’s just a joy to see children blossom and grow every day.” “I know that I am in a position where I can create an environment that really makes children happy and helps them to thrive.” She expresses a similar understanding of her responsibilities vis-à-vis faculty and staff: “I certainly want to have that same environment for my teachers, where they can grow professionally and spiritually.”

One is reminded of St. Julie’s high regard for education as “the greatest work on earth,” her ardent desire to gather and educate children, her insistence on sound spiritual and professional formation for young women entering Notre Dame before they set foot in a classroom, and her adage: “Teach them what they need to know for life.”

Particularly with regard to education for life, the Review article emphasizes that, in Catherine’s mind, Trinity had a serious obligation to model and inculcate a strong sense of social responsibility, nurturing seeds of future leadership and service. According to the reporter, Sister Catherine wanted giving to others to become a way of life for Trinity students. Catherine’s Hall of Fame citation concurs, commending her promotion of a “culture of service” that she modeled in an exceptional way. Besides “challenging students and their families to see beyond themselves and focus on the needs of the community,” Catherine led by example. In 1973, she co-founded FISH OF HOWARD COUNTY, INC., an emergency help organization best defined by its motto, Neighbors Helping Neighbors. True to form, she didn’t just launch FISH; she invested in it for the long term, becoming a monthly FISH volunteer. She also initiated an Adopt-a-Grandparent program at St. Martin’s Home in Catonsville, to bring Trinity youngsters together with St. Martin’s “oldsters.” To help working parents, she began extended day programs, opened a preschool at Trinity and worked hard to raise funds for financial aid. She also developed JULIE PROGRAMS to provide special help for students with language-based learning differences—a reflection of her abiding desire that “the uniqueness of each student [be] recognized, accepted, and celebrated.”

Indeed, as the Hall of Fame citation declares, Catherine was a living “model of character and values for her employees and students” alike. The Catholic Review agrees: Catherine didn’t “believe she should be in her office, but amongst the children and staff,” taking her turn along with her teachers at carpool and lunchroom duty. She knew and loved “every member of the Trinity community.” And we SNDs know, of course, that all of this is exactly what St. Julie, who played such an integral part in Catherine’s life, would have wanted her to do! What a joy to imagine our foundress greeting Catherine at heaven’s door: “I saw you, my child, at Compiegne.”

The Hall of Fame citation emphasizes a number of professional awards. Under Catherine’s leadership, Trinity was one of the first seven Catholic elementary schools to earn accreditation from Middle States and the Association of Independent Maryland Schools. Twice, the US Department of Education conferred Blue Ribbon of Excellence awards on the school (1989; 1999). Catherine herself was honored by the National Association of Elementary School Principals in 1989, and, three years later, was named Educator of the Year by the Howard County Chamber of Commerce (1992).

But there is more to say. All her Notre Dame life, Catherine was “busy about many things” with amazing energy; but she never lost sight of “the one thing necessary” (Cf. Luke 10: 38-42). Liturgy was one of her special loves, and her gifts of music and prayer were put to good use in our Masses and prayer services over the years (as well as at Trinity School). She was a community woman par excellence, from her postulate and novitiate years onward. Her service on provincial committees and boards was generously and professionally given. She had a special regard for SNDs who were ill or up in years. Who can forget the Christmas gifts, cards and picnic lunches she brought to Villa Julie for the fortunate SND who had been missioned by province leadership to pray for the needs of Trinity School in any given year? Or the way Catherine in her 70’s and 80’s continued sharing her gift of song at parties and liturgies alike – long after most people her age can still carry a tune (“even in a bucket,” some would say)! Or how, in one SND’s words, Catherine was “a perfect lady, from head to toe,” simply but attractively dressed, always gracious, always warm.

We cannot forget, either, where the gifts that flowered during Catherine’s adult life in Notre Dame had been planted and nurtured. She never forgot: “I owe all the good qualities I have to my parents, especially my faith and energy to my mother, and I am grateful for the continued love and support of my sisters and brother,” she wrote in 2009, the year she celebrated 60 years as an SND. Our hearts go out to Catherine’s two sisters, Linda and Paula.

Whatever our sense of loss – and it is profound – how can we complain that this valiant woman (Proverbs 31:10), at once Martha and Mary, has so suddenly and unexpectedly moved to a better place? St. Julie would have us remember that we can still meet her in the heart of Christ. And who of us would begrudge Catherine the fullness of joy that now is hers? She has indeed “chosen the better part,” and it will never be taken away from her!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Sandy Spring Bank Trinity School Golf Classic

Sandy Spring Bank Trinity School Golf Classic
Go Get 'em Golfing PARENTS!

Hello Trinity Parents,
I am emailing you to invite you play in the Trinity Golf Classic next Monday, April 30th. We are playing at Hobbit's Glen Golf Club in Columbia which is a beautiful course in a lovely setting.
There are two things you might not know about our golf event next Monday:
The weather forecast calls for a bright, sunny day in the 65-70 degree range. Perfect for a day of golf!
And to make it even better - foursomes are actually $100 less than last year's price of $800.

So for $700 you and three of your best friends can have a gorgeous day of sunshine, breakfast and dinner, and lots of fun and exciting new challenges. Golf Genius is on for our players so you can keep up with everyone's scores and more importantly your foursome's score in real time! 

If you are a single golfer don't let that stop you from joining us. We always have a group of golfers without a foursome who would love to have you join them! And what a great way to get that exercise we all need!

How else can you have a great day of golf and know that you are helping to make Trinity as special and unique as your child is. 

We 💖 women golfers!  And we would 💖 to have you join us.  
Believe it or not, if you choose, you will be able to have your car detailed while you wait!  


Register and purchase sponsorships here:

Take a swing into spring!
Renee Van Schoor
Trinity's Development Director

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Inside the Trinity Studio: Mr. Brad Doan, 7th Grade Teacher

Inside the Trinity Studio
Mr. Brad Doan, 6-8th Grade Social Studies Teacher

Trinity’s PR and Marketing Committee will be featuring several articles on Trinity teachers and staff. Based on the popular Bravo TV show Inside the Actor’s Studio starring James Lipton, our version called Inside the Trinity Studio will highlight a select group of faculty members by asking the subject 10 questions requiring one-word answers. It is challenging for the interviewee and fun for the reader. We hope you enjoy this interesting look at one of Trinity’s leaders, Mr. Brad Doan, 6th-8th grade Social Studies teacher. 

Mr. Doan was interviewed by Tracey Stone, a Trinity School parent.

 Date of interview: April 16, 2018

What is your favorite word? HIJINKS
What is your least favorite word? BILGE
What is your idea of earthly happiness? FRIENDSHIP
What do you value the most in your friends? LOYALTY
Who would you have liked to be? BOWIE
What sound or noise do you love? ZEPPELIN
What sound or noise do you hate? SCRATCHING
Who are your favorite characters in history? LINCOLN, EINSTEIN, T. ROOSEVELT
Who are your favorite fictional heroes? GANDALF, YODA, WOLVERINE
What would like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? NIIIICE

Trinity School is located on 48 beautiful acres in Howard County, Maryland. Trinity is a Preschool through Grade 8 independent, Catholic, co-ed school. Trinity is a two time blue ribbon award winner and is sponsored by the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.


April's Virtue of the Month: PEACE


On the night before he died, Jesus left us the gift of PEACE when he said to his disciples, "Peace is my farewell to you, my peace is my gift to you."

A gift is not a gift until a person has accepted it.

Have you accepted the GIFT OF PEACE?

Wherever you are, you should be a peacemaker - at home, at school, on the playground, at basketball, in the cafeteria, in your neighborhood.

Do you contribute to conflict by encouraging others who are disturbing the peace?
  • Do you say things that make people upset?
  • Are you uncooperative at play?
  • Do you think the rules are for everybody except you?
  • Do you take a fair share of responsibility for chores at home?
Take these words as your motto: Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.

Think of ways that YOU may be an INSTRUMENT of peace.
  • Take turns
  • Say only respectful words to one another
  • Keep the rules
  • Always cooperate
  • Be responsible for your actions
  • Always do your part at home and at school
  • Never encourage those who are causing conflict
  • When there is a problem, try to bring about a peaceful solution
  • If the problem continues, seek appropriate help

Friday, March 23, 2018

Inside the Trinity Studio: Ms. Cynthia Morgan, PreK Teacher

Inside the Trinity Studio
Ms. Cynthia Morgan, Pre-Kindergarten Teacher

Trinity’s PR and Marketing Committee will be featuring several articles on Trinity teachers and staff. Based on the popular Bravo TV show Inside the Actor’s Studio starring James Lipton, our version called Inside the Trinity Studio will highlight a select group of faculty members by asking the subject 10 questions requiring one-word answers. It is challenging for the interviewee and fun for the reader. We hope you enjoy this interesting look at one of Trinity’s leaders, Ms. Cynthia Morgan, PreK teacher. 

Ms. Morgan was interviewed by Arlen Reyes, a Trinity School parent.

 Date of interview: February 28, 2018

What is your favorite word? DOBERMAN
What is your least favorite word? HATE
What is your idea of earthly happiness? LOVE
What do you value the most in your friends? SUPPORT
Who would you have liked to be? YO-YO MA (Cellist)
What sound or noise do you love? STRING INSTRUMENTS
What sound or noise do you hate? ALARM CLOCK
Who are your favorite characters in history? DALAI LAMA, MOTHER THERESA
Who are your favorite fictional heroes? ANNE FROM ANNE OF GREEN GABLES
What would like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates? WELCOME HOME

Thursday, March 15, 2018

March's Virtue of the Month: SELF-CONTROL


Self-control is saying "no" to yourself and "YES" to something greater.

Setting GOALS for yourself helps you to practice self-control.
  • Example: You have a goal to achieve an A in a subject. So you choose to study for a test rather than watch TV.

Self-control means doing the right thing whether you feel like it or not.
  • Self-control is also understood as self-discipline and self-regulation.

All good traits of character are founded on self-control.
A person needs self-control to:
  • Sit still and listen
  • Control your temper and tongue
  • Respect others and their belongings
  • Eat moderately and healthy
  • Persevere to get work done
  • Moderate internet surfing and gaming

Self-control is when my "self" is controlled by the Holy Spirit
Galatians 5:22-23

Watch your thoughts,
They become your words.
Watch your words,
They become your actions,
Watch your actions,
They become your habits.
Watch your habits,
They become your character.
Watch your character,
It becomes your destiny.