Family Communication 10/18/18


Dear Holy Rosary Families,

As I mentioned in last week’s eFC, this past Friday I had the privilege of retreating with staff to reflect on the four great mysteries of our faith. Doing so allows us to strengthen our own faith, which in turns allows us to better educate your children in the Catholic faith. I thought it would be useful if I shared a brief reflection on each of the mysteries in the coming four weeks, so you are able to share in our learning as well. The excerpts you will read were written by Father Ron Nuzzi, Emeritus Faculty from the University of Notre Dame, who prepared all of the Catholic school principals to lead the fall retreats. I hope you will enjoy!

In Christ,

The First Great Mystery: The Incarnation

Every year on December 25, a feast liturgically known as the Nativity of the Lord, Catholics commemorate that day in history, that first Christmas, when the Incarnation occurred. But the Incarnation’s abiding significance leads believers in every generation to affirm the goodness of creation, the inherent dignity of all people, and the conviction that in and through humanity, God’s purposes can be realized. The Incarnation is a reminder that, as it was for Jesus, it can be for us. Humanity can be perfected as divinity. Celebrating Christmas, therefore, is as much about that first Incarnation as it is about God’s enduring presence and power in the world today. We celebrate the historical Incarnation not only to commemorate the one-time event, but also to remind ourselves that the Incarnation of Jesus has lasting and eternal consequences for all humanity.

Catholic homes, families, school, parishes, and hospitals are places where the Incarnation happens all the time. It is actually part of what makes them Catholic, namely, that believers see in these earthy institutions and relationships a spark of the divine. The Incarnation makes us believers in God’s abiding presence in everything human. Saint Irenaeus captured this conviction early in Christian history by stating, “the glory of God is the human person fully alive.” A modern theologian said it more simply: “Whatever humanizes, divinizes” (Himes, NCEA DVD).

Such an incarnational worldview is critical to Catholic education. It is the Incarnation that inspires Catholic educators to claim that there are no secular subjects, for whatever humanizes, divinizes. Whatever brings the image of God in a child to a fuller articulation and expression helps that child to grow in holiness. Whatever knowledge or skill is taught in school or in sports helps to bring the glory of God fully alive, and in so doing, advances the learner on the path to holiness. It is this incarnational worldview that affirms that parenting, teaching, coaching, and leading are truly religious in nature because by being present to others in helpful, supportive ways that help them grow and learn, God’s work is done, and all processes aimed at humanization are really divinization at their core. With this understanding, Catholics operate schools as places of ongoing incarnation, where the pursuit of holiness unfolds in the human development activities of teaching and learning. It is critical, therefore, that those who serve in Catholic schools understand this incarnational principle and assist all in the school community to embrace this truth. Math, English, Social Studies, Volleyball, Theater, Art, Music, Science, and Lacrosse, because they help the image of God to grow in every child, are religious subjects and their teachers and coaches are religion teachers. The religion class itself is just icing on the cake. The incarnational aspect of Catholic education makes all of these subjects and activities holy as well.


Called to Serve as Christ: Giving Options

The Called to Serve as Christ Campaign is a great opportunity to benefit Holy Rosary, as we accomplish much other good as well. We will fully fund priest and religious sisters retirement for generations to come. This will lower our parish’s financial burden—presently $39,000 a year, freeing up monies to spend on our local ministries and needs. The 15% rebate up to our archdiocesan goal, and 85% after, will also allow us to fix our breaking stained glass windows, replace our Big Toy that provides a safe space for our children and those of the neighborhood to play, and see to the structural integrity of our buildings by performing the needed maintenance on the bricks and mortar that have worn due to time and weather.

Parish Goal: $2.0 Million

Pledged to Date: $443,775—31.45% of Parish Goal Total Pledges: 60

Rebate to Parish — $66,566.25

Separate Donations with Corporate Matches — $40,000*

Total Parish Direct Benefit: $106,566.25

*Some companies do not match religious donations but will if it is not used for church purposes. The Archdiocese is allowing us to offer these parishioners the option of splitting their pledge, donating some directly to the campaign school projects, allowing us to take advantage of some of the company’s matching donations.

This is good news! Thank you to the generous 60 individuals and families participating thus far. Imagine where we will be if all the members of our family of faith participate—and how much good will is accomplished!

The Ask

As a parishioner you should have received a packet in the mail three weeks ago with information and an ask from the Archbishop. Some of you will be receiving yours directly from a Cabinet Member, if you haven’t already. The mailing will also be resent in the next week. I am inviting all of our parishioners to participate in this important campaign—because only together can we do extraordinary things.

It is a challenge and a sacrifice because it’s not in place of, but in addition to, your parish and/or school giving, and giving to the Archdiocesan Annual Catholic Appeal—because these ministries still need their funding. You can turn in your pledge card to the parish or school office or into the collection basket at Mass—an offering to the Lord, which will allow us to record it and forward it. Or you can mail it directly to the Archdiocese using the envelope provided.

Giving with the Greatest Benefit to You

Once you make your pledge, the next step is to figure out the best way to make your gift. Gifts to the campaign can be made through cash or check to the Called to Serve as Christ non-profit specifically setup for this campaign. You can also 

  • set up a recurring or one time gift using a credit card, or through electronic funds transfer directly from your bank account. Note: Right now, the online donation option is unavailable on the Archdiocese website, but it will be up and running in November.
  • donate stock or mutual funds held for at least one year and realize special tax advantages. Donors can receive a tax deduction for the full market value of the gift while avoiding capital gains tax on the appreciation. (The Archdiocese has a special donation form for gifts of securities)
  • apply for a matching gift if your company has no religious restrictions on matching donations. If your company will not match donations to religious organizations, but will to connected schools, contact me about an option to leverage some of those matching funds for this campaign.

But there are some other options to consider as well, depending on your particular circumstances.

  • Individuals over 70½ years old must take a minimum distribution every year from their IRA. If it is a traditional IRA (not a Roth IRA), the distribution is taxed as income. However, if you direct your traditional IRA to make a distribution directly to a non-profit (such as the church or this campaign), that amount counts towards your minimum distribution but is not taxed as personal income.
  • The new IRS tax law established new, higher standard deductions—$12,000 for single filers, $24,000 for married couples, and $18,000 for heads of household. There is an additional $1,300 for each married taxpayer and $1,600 for unmarried taxpayers who are over 65, as well as a per child deduction. If you plan on making some sizable donations over the next two or three years, you could consider doing so in a lump sum, or “bunching” them, in one year. This will increase the likelihood of exceeding the standard deduction in that year and thus potentially providing additional tax savings. 
    • A Donor Advised Fund is an irrevocable charity fund that you can set up with certain banks or financial firms to facilitate and provide flexibility in your charitable giving. Generally you fund the charity account with a lump sum that will be donations paid over years. You get the tax deduction the year that you fund the charity account, again increasing the likelihood of exceeding the standard deduction in that year and potentially providing additional tax savings. The flexibility is that you can invest the funds while in the charity account, and distribute the funds for donations over any length of time and to multiple charities.

Before making any financial decisions it is important to consult a tax and/or financial advisor to make sure you do so properly and to your greatest advantage.


Preschooler’s Trick-or-Treat!

Calling all age five and under trick-or-treaters to come to Holy Rosary School on Friday, October 26 from 10:30-12! There will be a mix of candy and non-candy items given out from Holy Rosary classroom teachers. This free event is open to all preschool-aged children.

You’re Invited! School Commission Open Meeting November 8

My name is Brendan Kolding, and I am the 2018-2019 School Commission President. Growing up in Davis, California, I attended Catholic schools K-12. I have a BA from Gonzaga University (Go Zags!!) and an MA from Marquette University. My wife, Danielle, and I have three children:  Bren (2A), Greg (KA) and Ann (P3). I have worked for the Seattle Police Department since 2008. I have had many assignments across the Patrol Operations Bureau and the Compliance Bureau over the past decade, and currently serve as a lieutenant at the North Precinct. Prior to becoming involved with the School Commission, I was involved on several different Fulcrum Foundation committees.

Have you ever wondered what the School Commission does? The School Commission is an advisory body that assists the pastor and principal in policy development and long-range planning for the School. Members serve a 4-year term, attend monthly Commission meetings, and participate on at least one standing committee in support of the school’s mission and goals. For 2018-2019, our group’s focus is finalizing the School’s strategic plan, which many families contributed to through last year’s focus groups and survey. Once complete, we will identify how the Commission can best support the implementation of the plan over the next five years and get to work! The lion’s share of these efforts will be done by our standing committees:  Alumni Relations; Buildings & Grounds; Catholic Identity; Fundraising; Marketing, Communications & Governance; and Planning & Finance.

Importantly, the School Commission works together to ensure that Holy Rosary is on stable footing to continue to provide our children with a top-notch Catholic education. Part of this process involves a continuous conversation about finances, wherein we discuss non-tuition revenue sources (e.g., fundraising) as a means to keep tuition reasonable, without compromising school programs or staff compensation. The legislature’s response to McCleary has created an environment where private schools need strong, forward-thinking leadership. At Holy Rosary, we are blessed to have an incredibly talented and devoted group of parents who are working with our principal and pastor to provide that leadership. They are:

Alumni Relations Chair
Buildings & Grounds Liaison
Catholic Identity Chair
Fundraising Chair
Marketing, Communications & Governance Chair
Planning & Finance Chair
Parents’ Club President
Parents’ Club Vice-President

Julie Leonardo
Mary Ann Fessler
Kamila Kennedy
Molly Ward
Amanda Roberts
Alison Morton
Karin Hansen
Tara Martin
Dino Annest
Jackie Bryan
Ben Gauyan
Elena Gruner
Sarah Katsandres
Libby Pickthorn
Barbara Spiering
Ann Baker
Martina Phelps

The School Commission has three open meetings a year. I would like to invite anyone who is interested in learning more to attend our first open meeting on Thursday, November 8, at 6 p.m. in 7B.

Preschool And Kindergarten for 2019-20

The priority application period for our current school and parish families is now ongoing (September 15-November 15). All students entering kindergarten for 2019/20 at Holy Rosary must fill out an application for our K-8 school. If you have a new student entering our preschool (2s, 3s, or PreK), this is also the time to submit an application. There are very few available spots in our preschool 3s and PreK class; early submission is highly encouraged! Reenrollment for current students (except kindergarten) will happen in January. Our fall Open House is on Saturday, October 27 from 10-1. We have our kindergarten testing day scheduled for Friday, February 8, 2019. Any questions about the process, how to set up a tour, or our preschool through eighth grade school, contact Jennifer Kokkonis, Admissions Director,


  • October 19 – Eighth grade pizza lunch, Mother/Son Glow Bowl
  • October 25 – Picture retake day
  • October 26 – Preschool Trick-or-Treat, 10:30-12
  • October 27 – Fall open house
  • November 3 – Italian dinner
  • November 8 – School Commission open meeting
  • November 12 – No school, Veteran’s Day (BASE closed)
  • November 19-21 – Parent/Student/Teacher Conferences (regular school not in session, BASE open)
  • November 22-23 – Thanksgiving break, no school (BASE closed)


8th Grade Pizza Lunch Fundraiser

Tomorrow is our first eight grade pizza lunch of the year! The online order form is no longer available. Please contact Sheila Cosgrove directly at with questions about future pizza lunch days. Pizza lunch days are:  10/19, 11/16, 12/14, 1/11, 2/1, 3/1, 3/29, 4/12, 5/10, 5/31.

Mother-Son Glow Bowl

Mother-Son Glow Bowl is tomorrow! Please join us on Friday, October 19 from 5-8 at West Seattle Bowl for a fun night of moms, sons, food, and bowling! Complete the online registration here. The theme is PAJAMA BOWL – so put on your favorite and coziest pajamas and be ready to roll!

Financial Aid Applications For 2019-20

Financial aid applications for Fulcrum and school aid (one application form) are now available. Please submit your applications by January 1. Please contact Jennifer Kokkonis at with any questions.


WestFest Expenses

It’s the last call for WestFest expenses! Please turn in your WestFest receipts and reimbursement forms to the main office by tomorrow! Thank you!

Development Directives

MAGAZINE DRIVE sales are officially over! Thank you to all the families who sold magazines. We exceeded our goal of $120,000 and ended with 93% participation!!! THANK YOU!!! This will truly help when applying for grants.

Congrats to the TOP SELLING classes:

  1. grade 5 wins the Kona shave ice party
  2. grade 3 wins the ice cream party
  3. grade 4 wins the popsicle party

Congrats to the overall TOP SELLING students:

  1. Zach B.
  2. Luke P.
  3. Audriella L. and Lilly P.

Congrats to the classes below that had 100% participation. Donuts and a teacher coffee/tea beverage were delivered this morning to:

  • Mrs. Blanco
  • Mrs. Clarke
  • Ms. Crockett
  • Mrs. Robel
  • Ms. Stroud
  • Mrs. Uding
  • Mrs. Yi

Congrats to the top sellers in each class:

Clarke – KA
Crockett – KB
McNerney – 1A
Blanco – 1B
Robel – 2A
Yi – 2B
Uding – 3A
Meland – 3B
Simpson – 4A
Podell – 4B
Semandiris – 5A
Schreck – 5B
Chiodo – 6A
Stroud – 6B
Ritscher – 7A
DeFeo – 7B
Secrest – 8A
Mohrbacher – 8B

Nona A.
Carter K.
Reed M.
Lucille N.
Elijah W.
Mari B.
Audriella L.
Luke M.
Olivia D.
Lilly P.
Kallie E.
Luke P.
Finn L.
Liz R.
Blake H.
Drew V.
Zach B.

FAMILY FUN CENTER permission slips were emailed over the weekend. Please return to Beth at or to the main office by Monday, October 22.

We’re still in need of five volunteers to chaperone the Family Fun Center on Friday, November 2. This is a special prize for individuals selling 25 subscriptions or families that reach 40 or more subscriptions sold. All volunteers will receive fundraising hours and must be Safe Environment cleared. Please sign up here to chaperone. No need to drive as Kennedy High School buses are provided to and from the Fun Center.

Remember that friends and family may order or renew magazines year around using the web site and using the code ROSARY. We still receive 51% of sales, although selling for prizes has concluded for this year.

A HUGE thank you to our co-chairs Jennifer Wong and Jenni & Dwight Rowley. This is the school’s second largest fundraiser and it wouldn’t be successful without volunteer support.

Finally, the FAMILY FUN CENTER is scheduled for Friday, November 2. This is the reward for those who sold 25 subscriptions individually/families that sold 40. Approximately 20 volunteers are needed for this reward. We will depart the school at 9:30 a.m. and return by 2:00 p.m.

Italian Dinner – Mangia Bene, Vivi Felice – Eat Well And Live Happy

Buon Appetito! Come enjoy our annual Italian Dinner on Saturday, November 3 from 6:15-9. It’s a family friendly event which serves a delicious Italian pasta meal with dessert. Purchase tickets here.

Interested in volunteering for the Italian Dinner? We need prep cooks, servers, bussers, and a cleanup crew. Sign-up through the Sign-up Genius and earn fundraising hours.


No extracurricular news this week.


Faith Formation At Holy Rosary Parish

Our parish offers many opportunities to grow in your faith beyond the school day. We’d like to highlight a few.

  • Monday Rosary – Looking for a way to renew your Faith? Stressed and need a break? Join us for only 25 minutes to pray the rosary on Monday evenings at 7 in the Chapel! Rosaries and prayer aids provided. All are welcome!
  • Adult Confirmation – If you are a Catholic over 18 and have not received the sacrament of confirmation, now is your chance! Not only does confirmation strengthen you to bring Christ’s love to the world, it is also required for godparents and sponsors, and is strongly recommended before getting married. Contact Robert King at or 206-937-1488 x203. Also, all are welcome to learn more at our weekly inquiry sessions every Tuesday evening.
  • Becoming Catholic: The Rite of Christian Initiation for Children (RCIA) – Are you or your child interested in becoming Catholic? If you or your child have not been baptized, or were baptized in another Christian tradition, we are happy to help you learn more. Grade 6 to teens meet on Tuesday evenings and children on Thursday. Please contact Sr. Stella at or call 206-937-1488, x252.
  • Sunday Nursery During Mass – The Sunday nursery  runs during 8:30 and 10:30 mass and is open to all children aged one and walking, up to kindergarten. We have wonderful paid caregivers along with student volunteers to watch and play with your children. For questions, email Deyette at
  • Baptism for infants up to age 7 – If you are interested in having your child (infant up to age 7) baptized Catholic, please contact Deyette at

We also offer a variety of offerings for both children and adults! Find more information on our website (, and in future eFC’s!

School Parents: Sing for Your Volunteer Hours!

Did you know that you could literally sing for your volunteer school hours? Participation in a parish adult choir for Sunday Mass is a qualified “non-fund-raising/general volunteer hours” actual thing! Not only that, it is fun and you can be with other singing, fun-loving adults – completely separate from your wonderful school kids. 😉 Imagine an evening away from the family on a Wednesday or Thursday – time just for you! You can have this much fun, and claim up to 25 valuable volunteer hours. Not only that, you can give your spiritual life a boost, as we not only sing together, but pray together and support each other in many ways. You can either sing every week, or arrange per your schedule to sing on a seasonal basis. And we do understand that conflicts arise one week to the next.

Paul Dolejsi directs the music for the Saturday 5 p.m. and the Sunday 10:30 a.m. Masses. Both of these groups are SATB choirs (you can sing melody – you don’t have to be a pro!), with piano and guitar accompaniment. We rehearse together for both Masses on Wednesday evenings from 7:15-8:45. You can choose which Mass (5 p.m. or 10:30 a.m.) at which you would like to sing each weekend. Mary Ann Lee directs the music for the Sunday 8:30 Mass. Their SATB choir sings from the loft and features organ and piano accompaniment. They rehearse on Thursday nights at 7:30 and are a very joyful and welcoming group! If interested in this sweet opportunity for volunteer hours, contact Paul at the parish office Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, or drop by after Mass!

Saint Of The Week

Every week we highlight a particular saint. This week we celebrate St. Teresa of Calcutta. Mother Teresa was one of the great figures of the 20 the century, known for her care for the poorest of the poor. She was able to face the most difficult conditions by making prayer the center of her day. Even when she struggled with doubts and a feeling of God’s absence, she remained faithful to prayer, which gave her strength to continue serving. We celebrate her feast on September 5.


Piano And Drum Lessons

Danny McMahon, who has taught lessons for over 20 years, with many Holy Rosary students as students, is looking for more students to teach on the piano and drums! Contact Danny at

University of Washington, College of Education School Psychology Program

COUNSELING FOR CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS – The University of Washington’s College of Education is offering free weekly therapy sessions for children and adolescents between the ages of 6-18 years old. Those experiencing anxiety, depression, attention-deficit, social skills, and behavior problems are examples of appropriate referrals, although we will assess for your individual needs. Please see this flyer for more information.

TESTING FOR SCHOOL-AGE CHILDREN – The University of Washington’s College of Education invites you and your child to participate in the school psychology graduate’s assessment testing course. The tests administered by graduate students (under the supervision of licensed psychologist/faculty), are designed to identify strengths, weaknesses, and learning disabilities that may be influencing the child’s academic performance. Please see this flyer for more information.

Seeking Vendors For Holiday Bazaar

Vendor spaces are still available for Saturday, November 17 at St. Francis of Assisi. The holidays are coming up quickly and that means the shoppers will soon be ready to shop! Looking to sell your unique art or newest craft? This is the perfect place to start selling to those early holiday shoppers! Whether you’re new to selling your wares or not, we’d love to have you at this wonderful community event. Please contact Paula Hall at 206-552-6652 or to reserve your space today! Saturday, November 17 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at St. Francis of Assisi, 15216 21stAve. SW, Burien, WA 98166.

Ingraham High School Open House For Private School Families

Ingraham High School is holding a general information night in its library on November 7 at 7 p.m. It’s open to parents and students new to the Seattle Public Schools. Ingraham staff will answer any questions about academics, sports, clubs, and student life at Ingraham. More information is posted on the Ingraham High School website.