Holiday greetings from St. Joseph’s Indian School here on the banks of the ‘frozen’ Missouri River!
There was an article in our local newspaper about ice fisherman enjoying this time of year, as they can now get out on the ice and have some fun.
As you may have seen on local weather reports, the upper Midwest has been blasted. Last week, a rain and ice storm closed the Interstate all the way from Chamberlain to the Wyoming border. The weather is predicted to be nice now until Tuesday. We hope this is correct since Monday is the scheduled day for our students to return and we do not want them to be out in a storm trying to get back to campus. Please pray for good weather on Monday as our students travel back to St. Joseph’s.
Aside from the weather, the holiday break seems to have been rather peaceful here. We’ll be hitting full stride again on Tuesday when we have the Prayer Service to kick off the third quarter of the school year.
Since it has been rather quiet on campus, I want to take this chance to bring you up-to-date on various activities our students were engaged in this month. In mid-December, the students took part in the annual Christmas program, where those who have been practicing musical instruments get the chance to share their newfound skills with staff and their peers. Each class also recited a poem or sang a song.
This year each song, poem or musical number was introduced, giving some background on who wrote the song or poem or where a musical number was first performed. The talent was impressive—there were songs done on the pipe organ, drums, flute, trumpet, guitar and clarinet under the guidance of our music instructor.
The students were very happy to see that several family members were able to attend the performance!
DANCING DOLLS AND DUDES
On Sunday, December 4th, a good number of our students took part in Dancing Dolls & Dudes! Dancing Dolls & Dudes is a dance group that includes dancers from pre-kindergarten through 6th grade. Each age group performed a few routines for the crowd.
For boys, this is the second year that they have been able to participate. 10 St. Joseph’s young men decided to take part.
The Chamberlain Armory was packed with proud parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles and houseparents for the recital. As you watched, you could tell that a lot of time and effort had gone into the production—each group even had their own costumes!
Two of the adult leaders were members of St. Joseph’s staff and some of our high school girls even got involved as dance instructors for various groups.
We are so proud of everyone that took part!
As Christmas is more than just gifts, decorations and special music, it was nice to see the young ladies of Summerlee Home get into the spirit of giving and helping others. Their houseparent, Vicki, has been down with some medical issues and they wanted to help with her medical bills.
The girls created six baskets filled with various goodies, treats, games and a trip to the movies that students and staff could purchase raffle tickets for.
They sold the tickets at the wrestling match that gave our younger students the chance to show off what they had learned over the past month or so of practice. There was some great matches as the boys went at each other with great enthusiasm.
While that was exciting, the Summerlee Home girls were happy they had the chance to show their support, love and encouragement for their houseparent.
‘Flat Francis’ was a guest of Summerlee Home recently and enjoyed having the chance to share a meal or two and take part in the video game JUST DANCE. In the one picture, it looks like his hand raised in blessing is right in line with the reaching for the sky move the girls next to him are doing.
Over Christmas, our Religious Education teacher Joe has been fixing him up a bit due to some nicks and bruises he has picked up in the process of being passed from home to home. He’ll be in great shape once the students return and is anxious to see what his next adventure will be!
On behalf of all the students and staff here at St. Joseph’s Indian School, I would like to wish each of you a very Happy New Year filled with good health, much happiness, peace and joy now and throughout 2017.
Fr. Anthony Kluckman, SCJ