St. Joseph’s students participate in clubs and camps!

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain
Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

Good day from St. Joseph’s Indian School!

This has been an interesting few days weather-wise. You’ve heard the statement ‘March comes in like a lion or a lamb and goes out the opposite.’  The addition of a leap year day kept that truth in place here at St. Joseph’s, since that was the day (not the 1st of March) that got the bad snow storm.  The month ended on a wet and windy day which set the tone for more snow on April 1st, and that’s not a joke.  One benefit is that the grass is turning green nicely.

The big event of this past weekend was the reception of Sacraments for 24 of our students at Our Lady of the Sioux Chapel – four made their 1st Communion, 16 were Baptized and two made a Profession of Faith. 18 of these students also received the Sacrament of Confirmation.

Reception of the Sacraments.

We were honored to have family and friends join the St. Joseph’s community in witnessing the reception of the Sacraments. As always, several of St. Joseph’s Houseparents, teachers and Family Service Counselors served as godparents or sponsors for the students.


Continue reading “St. Joseph’s students participate in clubs and camps!”

Greetings from St. Joseph’s Indian School!

Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph's Chaplain
Fr. Anthony, St. Joseph’s Chaplain

I hope everyone had a blessed and Happy Easter. Our students and staff arrived on campus Monday morning rested, refreshed and ready to go for the remainder of the school year. Thankfully, our students were all able to return to campus before the snow began falling.

This week is very special for a number of our students as they are in the homestretch of their preparation for reception of Sacraments (Baptism, 1st Communion and Confirmation). The students prepared by completing our Rite of Christian Initiation for Children (RCIC) Class.

We’ll have a number of students receiving all three Sacraments! Continue reading “Greetings from St. Joseph’s Indian School!”

Preparing students for their sacred day

Richard and his Lakota (Sioux) students.
Richard reading a book to the kids!

In a little over two weeks, on Sunday April 15, we will be having 21 students receiving the sacraments of Baptism, First Communion and Confirmation.

It is an exciting time in their lives and a somewhat sad time for me as this will be the last time I prepare students for this sacred day. I will be leaving St. Joseph’s Indian School at the end of the school term.

I have been here for almost ten years and in those years have served in various roles, including teacher and houseparent. I have tried to bring passion, dignity and laughter to each different job I have done, but the time has come to bring in new blood and new ideas.

I have always believed in going out when you are on top and not clinging to a job because it is safe and secure. We see that often in sports, where athletes hold on for dear life to their career, even when they can no longer be an asset to the team. I am proud of the work I have accomplished here at St. Joseph’s and walk away with my head held high and, most importantly, with the love and respect of our students.

I will be moving to sunny Palm Springs, California where an earthquake lasts only thirty seconds, as opposed the three day blizzards we have here!

As I let the Spirit guide me, please keep me in your thoughts and prayers. I must say, I have enjoyed doing this blog and am glad so many of you have responded so positively to what I have written.

God Bless you all – Richard

The celebration of sacraments

Twenty St. Joseph’s Indian School kids were either baptized or confirmed over the weekend!
Twenty St. Joseph’s Indian School kids were either baptized or confirmed over the weekend!

May 1 is our special Feast Day – St. Joseph the Worker. Today was made extra special by the celebration of the sacraments of initiation (baptism, confirmation and Eucharist) for our students who have taken part in special preparations during the year. Twenty students in all participated. The girls looked lovely in their white dresses and our boys looked sharp dressed in suit and tie.

At the end of our liturgy, our “Chalk Hills Singers” drum group played a honor song to pay tribute to their fellow students and ask God’s blessing upon them. At times the lineup of family and friends with cameras flashing must have felt like paparazzi, but it was important to everyone to preserve the memories of the day’s excitement . Afterwards we moved over to the school dining hall where the staff prepared a tasty sit down meal, and decorative cakes to mark the day.

I value the opportunities we have to partner with students’ families.  Some of the families had to travel quite a distance to be here, so a few stayed the weekend. We have some places on campus to house visiting families, and after our remodeling projects are finished, we will have even more capacity to host and collaborate.