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July 2012
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September 2012

August 2012

Is Everybody Ready?

If the floors arBooks_for_school4e getting a new coat of sealing wax, it must be close to first day of school!

Anticipation is high, enrollment is up and we're excited for the beginning of this new chapter in the life of our parish school.

Class assignments were distributed earlier this week and teachers will be putting the personal touches on their classrooms.

We've even had a few simulated classes with children volunteers to observe some potential faculty members teach a model lesson.

With art camp and sports camps the building has never been truly asleep, but it is surely amazing how quickly it springs to life when our students gather.

Donations to Holy Cross Church



Thank you to Marie and Michael McCarty for asking that in lieu of flowers, donations be made in honor of Marie's  mother,  Anna Walsh to "A Time to Build Campaign." Angie was a devoted Catholic and would be pleased to know that several family members and friends have made donations in her memory.


We encourage all families to remember Holy Cross Church when directing gifts from friends and family at the time of a funeral mass.


First Back to School Event of 2012-2013

Thanks to the PTA who organized a great welcoming last evening for the families new to Holy Cross School. So many families took the opportunity to share in this informal meeting with parents and administrators of Holy Cross School and get to know fellow classmates and parents.

After Fr. Manning led the group in prayer, Principal Bill Belluzzi welcomed everyone and made them feel at home.

It was so wonderful to be part of the spirit and enthusiasm that evening. It certainly sets a positive tone for the welcoming back events for returning school families and students in September.



The Monitor's "Back To School" Edition

Check out the article on our new Principal Bill  Belluzzi in The Monitor's August 16th edition. This issue features several new school principals throughout the Diocese. It's hard to believe summer is almost ended even though preparations for the new school year began even before last year's adcademic year came to a close.


Belluzzi Returns to Catholic Education


Belluzzi returns to Catholic education
A New Race – From his new office in Holy Cross School, Rumson, William Belluzzi displays the model cars, annual Christmas gifts during his public education career, which have long fascinated younger students and even led to some races in the office.   John Batkowski photo

A New Race – From his new office in Holy Cross School, Rumson, William Belluzzi displays the model cars, annual Christmas gifts during his public education career, which have long fascinated younger students and even led to some races in the office.   John Batkowski photo

Christina Leslie

Tennis coaches advise players to develop both strong forehand and backhand strokes. New Holy Cross School principal, William Belluzzi, no stranger to the clay court or nylon net, now plans to coach a team of students and teachers with a similar steady hand.

Belluzzi earned a bachelor’s degree in romance languages from Fordham University, the Bronx, N.Y., and a masters degree in secondary education from Montclair State University, Montclair. He later earned a masters degree in administration and supervision from William Paterson University, Wayne.

With advanced degrees in hand, Belluzzi returned to the high school he had once attended, Bergen Catholic High School in Oradell. During his decade at his alma mater he taught Spanish and Italian, worked as a guidance counselor, initiated a freshman advisory program, moderated the school newspaper and yearbook, and coached tennis teams on both junior varsity and varsity levels. A seven-year term as guidance counselor (and, once again, tennis coach) at St. Joseph Regional High School, Montvale, was next; he then served as Spanish instructor and taught psychology courses at Dominican College, Blauvelt, N.Y. while coordinating a program for working adults interested in obtaining a degree in an accelerated evening format.

A foray into public education was next for the young family man; a stint as guidance counselor at Valley Middle School, Oakland, was followed by principal positions at Dogwood Hill Elementary, also in Oakland, and Tenafly Middle School in Tenafly. Belluzzi’s most recent position was as superintendent of schools in the Montvale public school system.

Belluzzi’s return to Catholic education was a faith-filled decision. “While we live in a pluralistic society with a public education system that provides enormous opportunities and benefits for all children, a Catholic education allows students to have their formative education in an atmosphere that supports the specific values and beliefs that they learn at home,” he wrote in an e-mail to The Monitor.  “This grounding, especially in the early years, enables students to learn more about their faith tradition, to have many opportunities to express that faith through liturgy and other prayer experiences, and to engage in Christian service, all within the context of their education. Hopefully, this will enhance their ability to become thoughtful adults who will apply Gospel values to all aspects of their lives.”

Belluzzi and wife, Jody, who met as kindergarten students in Our Lady of the Visitation Grammar School, Paramus, will celebrate their 39th wedding anniversary this month. Their son, Brian, is a high school English teacher and
daughter, Lisa, instructs special education students.  The Bergen county native is excited to fulfill his lifelong dream to live at the Jersey shore and return to Catholic schooling.

Belluzzi defined his goals for his first year as Holy Cross School principal much like an architect would define a new edifice. “The theme for the year is ‘Building on a Strong Foundation of Pride and Respect’,” he revealed. “I have just completed meetings… [and] have been struck by everyone’s pride in the school and the family feel that they have expressed. I hope for us to build on that wonderful foundation and to continue the ongoing academic goals on differentiation of instruction, introduction of a guided reading program and enhancement of educational technology, along with a variety of liturgical experiences and opportunities for Christian service.”

A Sad Ending

You will recall a post from several months ago ( in which I reminded parishioners that our school's full time faculty are covered  by employment and disciplinary policies established by the Diocese of Trenton which includes tenure. I felt it was important for everyone to know, especially in light of a comment that "this wouldn't happen in the public system" made during an ad hoc parish meeting. 

As part of the due process utilized by the teacher whose contract was not renewed, a Diocesan Appeals Committee  met on July 18th and affirmed our right to refuse to renew the teacher's contract under Diocesan policy. A second appeal from the Committee's decision was sought from the Vicar for Catholic Education and the Diocesan Superitendent of Schools who decided on August 13th that the parish acted within Diocesan guidelines and reported that in fact, the pastor and principal had been in constant contact with the Diocese and acted with their guidance in this whole matter.

I have two nautical paintings in my office, which serve as an inspiration for prayer and encouragement.

Jesus in Storm at Sea

The first is by Eugene Delacroix, Jesus and the Disciples during the Storm on the Sea of Galilee.


The second, a gift by a lesser known painter (but locally famous!), Mary Beth Wilson, who painted and gave me the painting entitled "Hope" several years ago.

Through calm seas and storms, it helps to know Jesus is in the boat!

Let us pray that we now enter a period of calm seas and tranquil waters.






First Communion Dates

This year due to the exciting construction schedule for Holy Cross Church, we will offer families of first communicants the choice of a January or a May date: January 26 in Holy Cross Church or May 11th in the Gymatorium.

The Office of Religious Education must be notified by September 7th of each family’s choice through a procedure they will describe.

Due to budgetary constraints this year, the parish cannot underwrite the cost of engaging the videographer for two separate, all day-events. We will explore alternate means of funding.


Welcome Our New 4th Grade Teacher






Holy Cross is pleased to announce the arrival of Kelly Kerr who will be a permanent 4A teacher. She comes to us with 12 years of teaching experience, including 4th grade and will be a wonderful addition to our teaching staff. Kelly and her husband and two young sons, reside in Rumson. Her enthusiasm, expertise and willingness to work with the other faculty will help her students excel.




First Communions in January

Nearly every family eligible to vote has expressed a preference and it's time to get down to planning. The parish staff is looking at suitable dates in January and realizing that it is important to get the dates to everyone as soon as possible, we will inform First Communicant families within a few days.

Thanks for your interest and patience. 

Triptych for Holy Cross Altar

Triptychs ("three folds") are probably known these days for picture frames and cards or brochures, but their earliest use in art was as altarpieces.  When closed, two panels are visible and when opened, the three interior panels are seen. This permits the art in the sanctuary to reflect the changing liturgical season and to celebrate liturgies with varying degrees of solemnity. Since liturgical art was used as a primary teaching tool about the life of Christ, the saints and Scripture, the use of a triptych allowed the church to display more sacred art in a smaller space throughout the year.

Our architect has been working on a possible design for a working triptych for Holy Cross' new sanctuary space and has recently sent us a drawing of the space behind the main altar (reredos).

Triptych doors closed showing two decorative panels
Triptych doors opened displaying three additional decorative panels

Now our blessing is to pray about the sacred art which might be installed and the timing of how we could finance it!

Holy Cross Church Welcomes New Music Director


It is a pleasure to announce that Don H. Carolina will be joining us here at Holy Cross as our new Director of Music. A graduate of Westminster Choir College, Don comes to us from Princeton University’s Aquinas Institute where he has been the Organist and Choirmaster since 1997. Mr. Carolina has extensive background in church music and conducting and training church choirs in New Jersey, New York and Virginia. His professional, yet easy going manner, his affable personality and his eagerness to help create beautiful music for worship will be wonderful assets to our parish community. Not only does he play Bach but he also plays tennis…Welcome!