The Compass: Official Newspaper of the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay, Wisconsin  Catholic

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Official Newspaper of the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay, Wisconsin
January 25, 2002 Issue

Catholic schools: providing all the tools

Student shares reflections on Roncalli experience

By Anthony Mack

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In today's world, students need all the help they can get to steer a course that allows them to balance their commitment to God, community and their need of achievement. This is the reason that I believe a Catholic education has not only been beneficial to myself, but to everyone who steps through the doors of Roncalli High School. The Roncalli experience molds a person into someone who is going to have their priorities straight and achieve his or her goals.

Roncalli offers to its students the ability to go as far as they are willing and are prepared to go in their academic studies, extra-curricular activities, and community service. Roncalli offers the best of both worlds, the ability to achieve and the ability to practice faith. The advanced placement programs do not simply emphasize academics; they emphasize real world struggles. The Christian atmosphere reflects the philosophy of its namesake Pope John XXIII. Roncalli allows the students and teachers to talk openly about their faith and how God can help them through their struggles. It is gratifying to know that when students participate in Roncalli's advanced placement programs that they can talk about their triumphs and tribulations.

Students are not limited to merely advanced placement programs. They are also encouraged to participate in extra-curricular activities. These activities range from sports and the fine arts to things such as mock trial and forensics. Although these activities differ greatly in how the student participates, they allow for students and coaches to seek God's help and guidance to deal with the struggles that these participants will experience. It is my firm belief that this Christian environment has allowed Roncalli to excel.

Roncalli is also a major contributor to the community, not only through school related activities, but also through its many community enhancement projects. The school believes in extending its values to the community that we are proud to call home. Service projects such as its National Honor Society's Highway Clean Up program all the students to show the community that they are concerned about the area's appearance. Students are willing to commit their time to beautify the area and set an example for others. In another community project, Spanish speaking students at Roncalli volunteer to tutor-non-English speaking residents to try to bridge the gap of communication among its many residents.

Whether through taking up weekly collection for the less fortunate of our community or being able to experience the Lord in a classroom setting, I would not trade any of my experiences at Roncalli High School. I know that every second I am there, I am enriched.

(Mack is a senior at Roncalli High School in Manitowoc)

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