Holy Cross School

October 2015 Living Rosary In Church Prayer Garden





The October weather seemed more like spring and the sun was bright and vivid for the Living Rosary on the grounds of the church today. The sunshine helped the multi-colored T shirts shine, a different color for each decade of the rosary.

Our statue of Mary didn't make the celebration, in fact, she is lost somewhere between China and Rumson. We hope she will join us soon!

Thanks to the school children, their teachers and our parish staff who organized and the orchestrated the event with skill and patience. The parents who come each year to pray with their children teach their children the importance of prayer as much as anything the school can do.



Holy Cross School Awarded National Blue Ribbon September 29, 2015

Congratulations to the students and faculty of Holy Cross School who today learned our school has been awarded a National Blue Ribbon by the US Department of Education. 

Blue Ribbon Schools have "administrators and teachers who are dedicated to high standards of learning for all students, they engage in data collection and analysis to determine the efficacy of instruction and assessment, they have students who demonstrate academic excellence, and they undertake professional development to stay at the forefront of best practices."

 The award was created in 1982, so it is no wonder that some of us older folks didn't grow up hearing about it, or even understand the award's significance. It had been discussed as a goal for Holy Cross for several years and when a Principal Search Committee was formed some years ago, achieving the Blue Ribbon designation was identified as a high priority for our new principal.
After important curricular reforms were instituted by our principal, Mr. William Belluzzi, and most importantly after he gained the trust and confidence of students, faculty and parents alike, the Blue Ribbon goal was set and was achieved this year.
We are grateful the school receives the wholehearted support of parents of our students and parishioners alike.We are proud of our school, its history, its faculty and students. May we always have the enthusiasm and resources to form young boys and girls in the faith of the Catholic Church and prepare them well for everything they will encounter on their life's journey.

Welcome Back to School !

Holy Cross Parish welcomes back the students of Holy Cross School after a beautiful summer. Our campus is quite a bit different than it was at year end's dismissal.

The playground has been rigged with a new sprinkler system and irrigation well, just about ready for use. Soon to come will be a code-required chain link fence around the playground equipment and a new fence alongside the church the length of the playground field to provide security for our children while playing and keep them under the watchful eyes of their teachers during recess.

A new, we surely hope, "leakproof" roof has been installed on the school building just in time for the new academic year.

And lastly, the Mass to inaugurate the school year is scheduled to take place in our new church later this month, just after its dedication by Bishop O'Connell.


More Construction - School Roof Replacement

Workers began replacing the school roof today. After many years of patching and unsuccessful solutions to the leaks, it was finally time to strip everything off and start anew. The crew should be here several weeks and the job complete well before school opens.

They have assured us they will be as careful as possible with debris, especially  nails, but it might be prudent to stay as far away as possible from the dumpsters and construction vehicles until final clean-up.


Penultimate Day of School

Lots of activity today everywhere, including almost non-stop traffic down Ward Avenue due to the closing of Rumson Road (not for our project!). School children were bringing home all kinds of stuffed animals on loan to the school for the year to prepare the classrooms for summer cleaning and painting. 

Tomorrow is the last day of school commemorated by a mass in the gymatorium. 

The school will be far from closed, however, as the Summer Enrichment activities and Sports Camps will be starting up!

Peaceful and blessed Summer everyone!


The Living Rosary: A Beautiful Day for A Beautiful Prayer

The weather was spectacular for the Living Rosary. The clear blue sky contrasted with the rainbow of colors, a unique color for each decade of the rosary. Everyone was very well behaved and prayerful. After many minutes of quiet prayer, it is always fun to shout to the heavens with the most exultant "alleluias" of praise to God.


Last Mass of School Year 2014 and Personnel Update

SchOutThis Friday will be the last day of school. The closing school mass will be celebrated at 9:00 AM in the gymatorium and all parishioners and their parents are invited.

Our principal, Mr. Belluzzi shared with the school community some changes in school personnel for next academic year and we are happy to reproduce them here:

This is a good time to share with you our staffing news as of this writing. On Friday, we say "Good bye" to long time first grade teacher, Courtney Robinson. Miss Robinson is a graduate of Holy Cross School and has worked very hard over the years to develop in her students an enthusiasm and love of learning. I know you join me in wishing her well as she moves to a new phase in her career.  I also thank Mr. Alyn Heim for teaching the children, especially our youngest ones, to sing so well. He will also be moving on, and we extend our best to him. Finally, Mrs. Tomaino will be taking an additional year off to care for her children, and I pray that this will be a joyful year for her and her family. A positive note for us is that Mrs. McConville has decided to put off retirement; I am so pleased she will again be teaching third grade next year. In my discussions with the faculty, I encourage teachers to consider changing grade levels. Mrs. Arnheiter began her career as an early childhood teacher, and, after several years in fourth grade, has asked to take on the challenge of first grade. Additionally, Mr. Miller, who has worked with us in math assistance and remediation, will be the new teacher for 4A next year. Finally, Mrs. Alison Mitchell, who had been at Holy Cross previously, will be joining me on the administrative team three days per week as the Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction and Assistant to the Principal. Alison is very familiar with Holy Cross and will be a great asset. I have already begun interviewing for the open teaching positions (Gr. 8, Grade 5, Grade 4 and Music), and I always look upon this process as an opportunity to shape Holy Cross for some time to come.

Mr. Belluzzi has been working so patiently on cultivating an even more excellent teaching faculty for our children, including dealing capably and calmly with an occasional surprise. I enthusiastically endorse his sentiment that the opportunity to welcome new teachers presents occasions of grace.

Join us in prayer of thanksgiving and petition on Friday.

Fr Manning


Newly Ordained Priest to celebrate Thursday Morning's Mass

Fr. Jerome Guld, a newly ordained priest for the Diocese of Trenton, will visit and celebrate tomorrow morning's regular 9 AM mass. Father had visited our school many times as a diocesan seminarian and after mass will visit with as many classes as his schedule permits. He will be accompanied by another familiar face to our school students, Seminarian Richard Osborn, who will also visit with our students.


Welcome Brian Rooney to Holy Cross School Faculty


Graphic785Our principal, Mr. Belluzzi, announced this morning that Brian Rooney, a Holy Cross School graduate, will be joining the faculty when we return in January.  Brian had been substitute teaching at Holy Cross primarily for 4th and 5th grades. In selecting Brian Rooney, Mr. Beluzzi noted that he stood out among the other candidates for understanding our mission and vision at Holy Cross School.

Please extend a warm reception to Mr. Rooney in his new assignment and pray for all our students to grow in wisdom, age and grace.




Christmas Show a Success

What a wonderful Christmas concert the school children of Holy Cross School put on for their parents and families this evening. Everyone was festively dressed for the Christmas season and it was good to see so many grandparents and family members. Mr. Heim and our teachers did a great job leading the children and are to be congratulated and thanked for making a great contribution to the Christmas spirit at Holy Cross.

Tomorrow is the last day of school before the Christmas break with dismissal at noon. Most of the classes are having class parties and festivities from arrival to dismissal.


Mass to Begin the Academic Year, Friday 9/13

EuchJoin us tomorrow morning at 9 AM in the gymatorium as the students of Holy Cross School gather to worship at a Mass to ask God's blessing as we begin the new academic year.


The year has gotten off to a great start. Everyone seems excited to be back and even with an unexpected fire alarm today caused by cleaning of the smoke detectors, the students were extremely well behaved and the teachers acted with professional demeanor.

Allow Extra Time Tomorrow

Tomorrow promises to be a pretty busy day, not only for everyone's schedule, but for the traffic patterns at Holy Cross. 

Along with the first day school excitement drop off, pick ups and bus lines, the construction site will also be busy. First, a fence company is coming to replace the wooden fence around the rectory deck; we have been waiting for this since Spring and the appointments were cancelled or postponed several times, including yesterday. They should not interfere with the arrival or dismissal traffic. Second, after a short hiatus in the work schedule, dumpsters will once again be arriving and leaving during the day for time sensitive work. It is possible the dumpsters will interfere with traffic on Ward Avenue or with the traffic flow in the parking lot alongside the carriage house.

Most of the construction delivery and removals have been since school closed, so this will be the first test of everyone's patience and courtesy. Please follow the instructions of faculty or staff in the parking lot for everyone's safety. Thanks for your cooperation. 

Food For Thought: Archbishop Chaput, A New Catholic School Year Begins

2w48There's a ritual at Holy Cross School by which you can always tell the opening of school approaches: the waxing of the floors. Well, the final coat of wax is drying today, so school must be opening next week, ready or not. We're ready!

Archbishop Chaput's letter to the troubled church in Philadelphia provides us with food for thought this Labor Day weekend.

 ...our [Catholic] schools exist primarily to develop the whole human person with an education shaped by Catholic faith, virtue and moral formation.  The goal of the Church, and by extension, the goal of all Catholic education, is to make disciples.

God renews the world with our actions, not our intentions. What separates real discipleship from surface piety is whether we actually do what we say we believe.

Welcoming Students and Understanding Our Mission, Archbishop Chaput

Read the entire letter here.

Holy Cross School 7th Graders to Visit Covenant House NJ

New JerseyHoly Cross' seventh grade students will soon visit Covenant House of New Jersey to see and hear firsthand the plight of homelessness among young people in our area. 


Congratulations to our Class moms for organizing the trip and recruiting the enthusiasm among parents and students alike.


We will report on the impact the trip has on our students after their trip next week.


Congratulations to Holy Cross School Class of 2013

It's hard to believe the academic year  has flown by and the time at Holy Cross School has ended for our graduating class of 2013. This year's graduates were lauded by both principal and pastor at the commencement exercises for the respect they showed their teachers and  each other. Their attentiveness and prayerfulness at worship could always be counted on. Their leadership will be missed, but we are confident they will continue to contribute to our parish community and their new schools as well.

It's also hard to believe we're only two quick weeks away from concluding the academic year for the entire student body, especially since our principal, Mr. Bill Belluzzi began his tenure at Holy Cross School only 9 months ago. While I was  thanking Mr. Beluzzii at graduation for his tremendous contributions to our school, I was heartened to see the entire school faculty  lead a standing ovation.

My personal prayers and best wishes for the graduates and their families and my thanks for their supportive enthusiasm for Holy Cross School and parish.