CRT Spotlights are intended to encourage and inspire fellow teachers of the faith. Know a religion teacher who deserves to be featured? Please send me their name and e-mail address via my Contact page. Thanks!
What teaching positions have you had and for how long?
K5 and 1st Grade Teacher for 12 years, 6th-8th Religion Teacher for 2 years
Where have you taught?
Jefferson and Washington Elementary Schools – West Allis, Wisconsin; Albrecht Elementary – Brodhead, Wisconsin; St. Mary School – Branford, Connecticut; St. Mary Parish School – Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
JUST FOR FUN
FAVORITE: Bible verse or story
Jeremiah 29:11 – “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
St. Catherine of Siena
FAVORITE: Christian work of art
Image of Our Lady of Perpetual Help
Warm chocolate chip cookies
FAVORITE: Book (besides the Bible) 😁
Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis
Pride and Prejudice, 2005
FAVORITE: Vacation spot
Falmouth, Cape Cod, Massachusetts
FROM THE CLASSROOM
What do you enjoy most about being a Catholic religion teacher?
Getting to focus each day on what matters most to my heart – my Lord and Savior and the Catholic Faith.
What religion topic/lesson do enjoy teaching the most?
Why we pray and how to pray.
What is something your students have taught you?
While we all change as we go through life, the temperaments God gave us are consistent. Who we were is who we are and who we will be. We need to work with and within those temperaments to become saints.
What is a “win” (story of success) that you have experienced through your role as a religion teacher?
When my toughest 8th grade class literally begged to do silent prayer. I was suspicious, thinking they wanted to goof around or were up to something, but when I peeked during the prayer they were all sitting quietly and contemplatively praying. They acknowledged that they crave the quiet and stillness of that time of prayer.
What is a struggle or challenge you have experienced as a religion teacher?
Accepting that I canNOT give the gift of Faith to anyone – all I can do is try to help them open their hearts to the Holy Spirit.
What have you found to be most effective in helping your students develop a strong relationship with Christ and His Church?
Sharing personal stories from my life, direct instruction of how to pray, and teaching the lives of the saints.
What kind of advice or encouragement would you most want to share with a brand-new religion teacher?
You have to let the Holy Spirit guide you in your teaching, and this only happens if you have a rich prayer life. You have to let go of your lesson plans, more often than not, and let Him lead you in what you say and do. HIS lessons will always be infinitely better than yours! Get out of the way!
Anything else you’d like to add?
Teaching the faith is significantly different than any other teaching. For it to be authentic and effective, God has to be in control. No one can teach the faith if they aren’t living it and if they don’t have a deep, rich, personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
How can other teachers connect with you?
Categories: The CRT Spotlight