October 2014

Wit's End . . . notes from the principal

Feeling blessed. Blessing another. Which of these phrases resonated with you immediately? Some form of the word ‘bless’ is uttered innumerable times each and every day. The word is used to request, to implore, to provide, to thank, to bestow. It frequently invokes God as an intercessor, but can also be a communication shared person to person, regardless of age.

Consider a most common usage. There is an expression in most languages that suggests a blessing of sorts as the reply to one who has sneezed. The phrase, “God bless you” or “Bless you” is often attributed to Pope Gregory the Great in the sixth century. The bubonic plague had reached Rome and the Pope requested prayers be offered immediately to anyone who sneezed, as sneezing was considered a first sign or symptom of the plague to come. Certainly, many years later as this phrase became customary, it continued as a wish for intercession and improved health, sneezing still rightfully associated with a possible cold or allergy. Over time, many other superstitions evolved as explanation, including that a sneeze expelled the soul, or opened the body to invasion by evil spirits, or even that it marked a moment when the heart actually stopped beating. None of these have merit. Nice to know, however, that in some cultures a sneeze is believed to be a signal of good fortune to come. Take your pick. Whatever you consider the response to mean, I gladly accept anytime a blessing is thrown my way.

Feeling blessed, and not for expelling thousands of microscopic germs into the air, should hold a higher position in the hierarchy of what I can recall at the end of a day or, better yet, a week or even a month. And such feelings deserve both my recognition and my attention. So here is a very recent compilation, the result of my focused and very intentional memory search of people with whom I have had some personal contact.

I AM BLESSED . . .

-with a loving partner, my spouse of nearly 39 years (while a suffering parent is experiencing the demise of a marriage)

-by happy communications with my two adult children, both of whom live in other states (met a parent who has buried her child)

-to know young women who demonstrate courage (spoke with a 17 year old campaigning for greater diabetes awareness, having been diagnosed herself a mere eight months ago)

(read the impassioned email from a student to a staff member requesting that the school try to better address suicide awareness; she lost her mother while in elementary school)

-to be inspired by compassion and forgiveness (awed by the understanding expressed to an adult from a student who herself had been wronged)

-to be able to mend a relationship (hearing the sadness expressed by a colleague and being able to apologize)

-to celebrate life (attending a marvelous celebration for 101 year old Marie)

-by my current state of good health (a very close friend having just endured major surgery for pancreatic cancer, diagnosed only weeks ago)

All of these moments, experienced within a small number of days, seem quite incredible to me, maybe only because they are staring back at me from this page. I am keenly aware at this moment that my ability to extend a blessing to another stems directly from the degree to which I feel blessed myself. My personal experience with tragedy, loss, illness, suffering . . . any and all of life’s potential difficulties . . . either blocks or reveals my capacity to extend good wishes to another.

I know this to be true because my role at this school includes not only constant knowledge of others’ needs and hardship, but also a steady stream of incredible accomplishments and demonstrations of goodness and unselfishness and service. It is life-giving to take stock of one’s situation, and to do so frequently. To voice the ills and problems and all the big and small moments of unfairness is therapeutic, but only if that is followed by a longer list of the blessings, blessings you can name and blessings you can own. Those are often as equally undeserved as our complaints.

And finally, I offer a blatant superstition, but one that will remain so only for as long as it doesn’t work: “A sneeze before breakfast is a sign that you will hear exciting news before the end of the day.”* And for that future prediction, “God bless you!”

May the aforementioned “news,” when it comes, make your next list of blessings.

Sincerely,

Mrs. Carolyn Witte, Principal

* http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/1958/why-do-we-say-god-bless-you-after-a-sneeze


Mercy Moment - Make a Difference Service Day


Mothers Club

A TIME FOR PRESENCE - REFLECT and RECONNECT with your daughter at the Mother Daughter Evening of Spiritual Reflection on Monday, December 7th at St. Edith Catholic Church. Mass is at 5:00pm with dinner immediately following. $20 per person. Reservations are limited so please register early. Forms and payment must be received by December 1st. Click here for invitation and registration form.

Please join us at our next meeting on Monday, November 3. Grace Seroka from Manresa Retreat Center will be leading the Christian Yoga class at the beginning of our meeting at 6:00pm in the Media Center. While wearing comfy clothes, please bring a yoga mat or towel, and water bottle. All yoga levels are encouraged to attend. A light meal will be served immediately following and regular meeting will begin at 7:15pm.

Anyone bringing in a donation for the 36th Annual Auction to the November and December Mothers Club meetings will receive a chance to win a free ticket to the Auction!

Be sure to check out the Mothers Club web pages and calendar for more information about upcoming events and important notes. Follow Mercy Mothers Club on FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/MercyMomsClubMercyHighSchool?fref=ts.


Dads Club

GRAND RAFFLE - The Dads Club's biggest fundraiser (and biggest payout) is in full swing. This Dads Club raffle benefits all Mercy girls. Donations are made to fund various school functions, clubs, activities and needs. Please join us in celebrating the Mercy experience with your daughters by purchasing the Grand Raffle tickets today!

ANNUAL WREATH AND ROPING SALE - Wreaths are a base of Fraser fir with boxwood, juniper berry, concolor fir and decorated with pine cones and a red ribbon. 24", 28" or 42" Wreaths; 20' or 60' Cedar Roping; and Merry Mix Swag available. You can also support Mercy by purchasing English Gardens Gift Cards for all your other Christmas decoration needs. CLICK HERE for pricing and to pre-order online. Pay for and pick up your items Tuesday & Wednesday November 25 & 26, noon to 3:00pm at the flagpole entrance.

ALL MERCY DADS are encouraged to meet, greet, and eat at our next meeting Tuesday, November 4th at 7:00pm in the Cafeteria.


Open House

Prospective students can MEET MERCY at the Fall Open House Sunday, November 2 from 1pm - 3:30pm. Invite 7th and 8th graders to tour Mercy and discover what it means to be a part of the Mercy tradition!

Mercy Alumnae and their families are invited to an early open house legacy tour from 12:30pm - 1:00pm. Arrive at the Chapel entrance. General Open House is from 1:00pm - 3:30pm beginning at the Lobby entrance.

If someone you know can't make it to the Open House, have them check out our shadow a student program. Contact the Admissions Office at admissions@mhsmi.org or 248.476.2484.


Fall Production - Godspell

Mercy High School Presents
Godspell
November 14-15 at 8:00pm
November 16 at 2:00pm
Tickets $13

Based on the Gospel According to St. Matthew, Godspell is a story about the formation of a community. The first act introduces John the Baptist who “Prepares Ye the Way of the Lord” by baptizing the ensemble. Through various theatrical traditions, including clowning, pantomime, charades and vaudeville, the act is a series of lessons and parables taught by Jesus. The second act follows the Passion story, including the Last Supper, Gethsemene, and the Crucifixion. After the Crucifixion, the ensemble is now prepared to carry on the lessons they have been taught. Godspell is a reflection on the life of Jesus with a message on kindness, tolerance and love. The show boasts such numbers as “Day by Day,’ “Oh, Bless the Lord, My Soul," "All good Gifts,” “Turn Back, O Man,” and “We Beseech Thee.”


Latest and Greatest from the Alumnae Office

NOMINATIONS for Mercy Distinguished Alumna Award

The Mercy Alumnae Board is accepting nominations for the 2015 Distinguished Alumna Award. Nominate an alum today! Visit our website for details and click here for a nomination form.

Open House - Join us! Mercy Alumnae and their families are invited to an early open house legacy tour from 12:30pm - 1:00pm. Arrive at the Chapel entrance. General Open House is from 1:00pm - 3:30pm beginning at the Lobby entrance.


Memorial Mass
Join us for Mass to commemorate the lives of Mercy’s deceased alumnae, staff, family, friends, and benefactors on Sunday, November 16th at 12pm in the Mercy Chapel. Please RSVP to 248.476.3270 or alumnaeoffice@mhsmi.org. If you are unable to attend, please contact the Alumnae Office with the names of those family and friends you would like included in our prayers and book of remembrance.

Student Successes . . . APPLAUSE! APPLAUSE!

Hannah Madill '14 on WDIV "Live in the D"! Hannah Madill was diagnosed in February of this year as a Type 1 diabetic. She has since become deeply involved in the JDRF (formerly known as Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) community.

Since her diagnosis Hannah has participated in the Today and Tomorrow Conference (where she met and formed a friendship with Nicole Johnson, Miss America 1999, T1D), she has become an active member of the JDRF Youth Council and formed a team for the JDRF Walk held in September. She has created her own website thru JDRF, wrote many personal letters asking for support, sold JDRF awareness bracelets and raised thousands of dollars. Fellow Mercy classmates, Mercy Alumnae and staff have joined Hannah's team in support and in effort to cure this horrible disease.
Last month, Hannah appeared on the WDIV segment "Live in the D" and talked about the importance of the work JDRF does. JDRF recommended Hannah to be their representative on the show and helped explain the importance JDRF and its impact on her life. View the segment on WDIV here.

Ellyse Conn, Emily Dulzo and Mikayla Kempf were chosen to be members of the Catholic Central Homecoming Court.

Congratulations to these stellar students who received the Archdiocese of Detroit Scholastic All Catholic Award:

Seniors Juniors Sophomores
  • Gabrielle Barthel
  • Rachel Belans
  • Emily Crowley
  • Olivia Drukker
  • Megan Haase
  • Sarah Hughes
  • Claire Lachner
  • Megan Makarewicz
  • Molly Murphy
  • Mackenzie Zierau
  • Cydney Ayad
  • Theresa Benton
  • Carly Camp
  • Natalie Cieslak
  • Jinghan (Molane) Hu
  • Erin Judd
  • Taylor Lombard
  • Sabrina Yancey
  • Nicole Belans
  • Mallory Demeter
  • Hannah Hamilton
  • Madeleine Jones
  • Samantha Kleedtke
  • Jordyn Kreucher
  • Sarah Kurpiers
  • Brooklyn Rue
  • Hanaa Saleh
  • Samantha Schubert
  • Katelynn Smith
  • Alissa Sweeney
  • Danielle Thomas
  • Sydney Van Acker
  • Jillian Yassay

Let's Hear it for the STAFF!

Did you know Religious Studies Teacher Mrs. Judy Ewald has 3 granddaughters at Mercy? They are Josephine Wenson '17, daughter of Jennifer Ewald Wenson '85 and Paul Wenson; Francesca Bellisario '18, daughter of Stephanie Ewald Bellisario '89 and Ronald Bellisario; and Maggie Ewald '18, daughter of Luanne Thomas Ewald '87 and Matthew Ewald.

We are proud to welcome Ms. Olivia Hanna who joined the Mercy staff this month as the new Advancement Assistant / Receptionist.


Give Me a M, Give Me an E, Give Me a R, Give Me a C, Give Me a Y!

Swim and Dive Team captured the Oakland County Championship. Golf played super and are the Catholic League and Regional Champions. Equestrian are District Reserve Champions and Regional Champions. Cross Country runner Allysen Eads is the CHSL Champion and she and Lauren Lytle were named All-Catholic. Other awards include:

Volleyball
All-Catholic: Kayla Fisher & Jenna Lerg
All-League: Shanleigh Conlan & Monica Shuk
All-Academic: Emily Crowley
Field Hockey
All-Catholic: Brooke Ottaway
All-League: Kristen Hiser
All-Academic: Maria Pulice

Brush up on your Marlin cheers and chants and see our teams in action! CLICK HERE to view the Athletics Calendar and even get driving directions.


Focus: HOPE Walk - By Ogechi Nwaopara '14

Since I was a sophomore, I've been going to Detroit with many other Mercy girls and Mrs. Dennis to help with the annual Focus: HOPE Eleanor's Walk for Hope. Every year is very special and memorable, but this year was very different; this was the first year I came from behind the scenes. Usually, it is the Mercy girls job to help make sure everything is running smoothly with the entertainment and make sure everyone is enjoying themselves, but this year Mrs. Dennis asked if I, along with other girls who participated in the Ethnic Bazaar step team, would like to perform for the walkers.

After many weeks of practicing, 16 of us were prepared to showcase our talent for the community. All of the girls are a part of Mercy’s club B.A.S.E, and love volunteering in the community in many different ways. The day of the Focus: HOPE Eleanor's Walk for Hope was a gift from God. The weather was pretty ideal in comparison to the many days of rain prior to the event. The number of people who came out to support the walk was outstanding. Our step routine was scheduled to open the walk, and everyone seemed very excited. We performed very well, and that was only the beginning of all the amazing performances! A jazz band followed us, and this really set the positivity and excitement for the walk. Overall, everything was perfect and it was very heart-warming to see all the smiles we put on people’s faces. Thank you to these Mercy students who participated: Jillian Jennings; T'yara McMillan; Olivia Holt; Taylor Hutson; Nia Adams; Taylor McNabb; Kaitlyn Brown; Arin Bell; Alycia Washington; Briana McCary; Micah Thacker; Gillian Toler; Gia Toler; Ann Mark; Anna Julien; Audra Barnes; Paisley Sutton; Ogechi Nwaopara; Molly Lyons; Bridget Lyons; Nicole Belans; Kailey Savona; Amy Vlachos.


Auction 2015

We need you! We are still in need of volunteers to make this year's auction a success! Committees that specifically need more assistance are: basketing, decorations and banquet. CLICK HERE to see our Auction committee description and CLICK HERE to SIGN UP for a COMMITTEE. Contact Lindsay Weismiller at 248.893.3535 or email lmweismiller@mhsmi.org to sign-up for a committee today!

Successful auctions always depend on fabulous gifts. Now is the time to start thinking about acquisitions and the ideas are endless from air miles to gift certificates. Click here for a complete auction wish list of suggested donation ideas. If every family obtained one gift for the auction we would have more items than ever before! There is also a giving tree in the school reception area, please feel free to take a tag and bring that donation to the school by January 31st.

Join Mercy family and friends at upcoming gift gathering parties. There are gift parties Saturday, November 1st in Grosse Pointe and the Field Hockey & Friends party is Saturday, November 15th in Wixom. Gift parties are a great way to connect with Mercy families and are located across Metro Detroit. Click here for a list of this year's parties.

Do you have a product or service not conducive for bidding? Advertise! From business card to full page color sizes we have a spot for all. Where do you GO? Who do you KNOW? Advertising contracts are available online here.

Click here for all things auction and save the date of Saturday, February 21st for a night of fun, food and friends!

Please do not hesitate to contact Lindsay Weismiller in the Special Events office at 248.893.3535 or lmweismiller@mhsmi.org with any questions, suggestions or to volunteer. Thank you for supporting the Mercy High School 36th Annual Auction. We are Mercy!


Young Mercy Leaders Pilgrimmage Dublin, Ireland

We are pleased to be able to offer our students the opportunity to experience the Summer 2015 Young Mercy Leaders Pilgrimage in Dublin, Ireland. In 2015, the Young Mercy Leaders Pilgrimage for secondary school students will be held again in Dublin, Ireland at Mercy International Centre Tuesday, July 14th through Friday, July 17th 2015. Click here for more info.

We will hold a second informational meeting with our representative from Corporate Travel for parents whose daughters may be interested in joining us for this once in a lifetime, Mercy immersion experience. This meeting is for those who may have missed the first meeting earlier in the year! The meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 11th at 7:00pm* in the Media Center. At that time we will be able to provide you with the trip details and answer any questions. Please click here to read the informational brochure prior to the meeting.


Young Mercy Leaders Pilgrimmage Dublin, Ireland

We are pleased to be able to offer our students the opportunity to experience the Summer 2015 Young Mercy Leaders Pilgrimage in Dublin, Ireland. In 2015, the Young Mercy Leaders Pilgrimage for secondary school students will be held again in Dublin, Ireland at Mercy International Centre Tuesday, July 14th through Friday, July 17th 2015. Click here for more info.

We will hold a second informational meeting with our representative from Corporate Travel for parents whose daughters may be interested in joining us for this once in a lifetime, Mercy immersion experience. This meeting is for those who may have missed the first meeting earlier in the year! The meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 11th at 7:00pm* in the Media Center. At that time we will be able to provide you with the trip details and answer any questions. Please click here to read the informational brochure prior to the meeting.


LORE Yearbook 2014 - 2015

YEARBOOK ADS - It's not too late to have your parent ad in the yearbook. Ads are due November 7 and all materials must be turned in with payment. Click here to download the order form. Online purchase and design of the senior ad is also available now via www.yearbookordercenter.com. Please select Order Number 13826. If you have questions, please contact Mrs. Smith at 248/893-3579 or hlsmith@mhsmi.org.

2015 YEARBOOKS - The yearbook staff has been passing out cookies to those "smart cookies" who already bought a yearbook. There's still time to be a "smart cookie" and guarantee your daughter's copy. Get the book that records all things Mercy. Staff will be taking orders Nov. 10-14 before and after school for $65. Online purchase of the yearbook as well as additional accessories are available via www.yearbookordercenter.com. Please select Order Number 13826. The price will increase in December to $70 so be a "smart cookie" and secure a copy now.


MNotes . . . miscellaneous info you need to know!

THE 2014-2015 MERCY STUDENT DIRECTORY IS ONLINE! The student directory is accessible to all parents and students online through PowerSchool. Login to PowerSchool and click on the STUDENT DIRECTORY icon. You can look at individual listings or the whole school. Please note if your daughter's entry is not displayed, a request was completed for address or phone number information to NOT be included in the student directory. The program used to post the directory pulls directly from the database and does not allow for individual record modification.

DIPLOMA NAMES - Attention Senior Parents: Diploma name requests were distributed to all seniors through their adviser and are due November 3. Any late changes to diploma names will require additional cost to process.

Physical and Athletic Forms - The MHSAA Physical & Athletic Forms must be turned in to Mercy before or during the registration periods. You cannot try-out on the first day of the season unless your physical and forms were turned in before or during the registration period.

Prescription Drug Abuse Seminars - Oakland County Health is partnering with Oakland Community College Royal Oak to bring Robert Stutman, the former head of the nation's largest DEA field office, to discuss multiple issues surrounding prescription drug abuse on October 28. It will be held at Oakland Community College Royal Oak Campus in the Lila Jones-Johnson Theatre on October 28 from 6:30-8:30pm. Another event for schools can be viewed via live streaming on October 28 from 9:00am to 10:00am. Register at www.oakgov.com/health. Click here for further information.

Athletic Code of Conduct is available Online here: http://mhsmi.org/sites/default/files/athletics/announcements/mercy_code_of_conduct_2014_0.pdf

After School Tutoring - NHS tutoring will be held in N12 from 2:45-3:30 on the following dates for the first semester: October 28; November 4,11,18,25; December 1,2,8,9. Students can get help in any subject.

Mercy Mobile APP - Stay up to date with Mercy on the go! The Mercy High School mobile App is ready for download to your smartphone or mobile device. Simply search "Mercy High School" in your App store


Snapshot of Mercy

Broadcasting Class is busy using their new studio equipment!

If you have a snapshot of Mercy to share, please send to jhearle@mhsmi.org.


Mercy Month Ahead

Event Date / Time Location
Halloween Dress Up Day

Oct 31

MHS
OPEN HOUSE
  • Nov 2 / 1p - 3:30p
  • Alumnae Legacy Tour 12:30p - 1:00p
MHS
Blessing of Student Leaders Nov 3 Auditorium
Mercy Mothers Club Meeting Nov 3 / 6:00p Media Center
NO SCHOOL - Staff In-Service Day Nov 4
Mercy Dads Club Meeting Nov 4 / 6:30p Cafe
"Godspell"
Nov 14 - 15 / 8p
Nov 16 / 2p
Auditorium
Alumnae Memorial Mass Nov 16 / 12p Chapel
Focus Hope Food Drive Nov 20-24 MHS
Thanksgiving Prayer Service Nov 24 Auditorium

If you have any questions or want to submit information contact jhearle@mhsmi.org. Want even more? Click the school life calendar and the Mercy web site. And don't miss all of the latest Mercy In The News articles. Check out the current announcements and browse the home page links to see what's happening at Mercy.

Your Giving Story

Help a girl develop her faith, acquire leadership skills, and find her voice in an academically superior environment. Please consider making a donation to Mercy. Then share your giving story using this link. Your gift always makes a difference.