As a member of Christ the King parish, I have had the ebb and flow of my faith develop through the doors of the Cathedral I call home. My family began the journey in the late 1950’s at the little white chapel, and soon moved with Fr. O’Neil to the large and gorgeous Cathedral. It was a move that my parents often spoke proudly of.
Every sacrament has been given to me within this parish, from Baptism in the white chapel to Matrimony in the Cathedral. My own children have had the privilege to enjoy the same experience, leaving an imprint of the sacrifice of many generations of their family.
Both sacramental development and education has rooted me in this parish. Upon becoming a teacher, my thought was to someday teach in the rooms where I had received my Catholic education. The unique opportunity to teach in a faith-filled environment is a gift I view as priceless. Not only do I joyfully watch the growth of education, I am immersed in a personal relationship with each child and their family as we navigate through a blend of education and faith. The privilege and responsibility is grand, but the reward and satisfaction is beyond measure.
Our school and church have had a unique relationship since our beginning. That little white chapel had big dreams for our Catholic community, and with the hard work, dedication and sacrifice of many, myself and numerous children have reaped the benefits. To witness classroom growth and to enjoy a view into a family and their child’s growth is the gift our school and church share.
The mission of our church has been to walk hand-in-hand with our school as she navigates today’s issues and tomorrows dreams. These students that the school holds are the future of our church. The beautiful model our parishioners exhibit with daily Mass, financial sacrifice, and talent gives the students a message that is deep-rooted in their education and faith. God has blessed my journey in faith to be a teacher of the sacraments, and for that I am eternally grateful to my parish, Christ the King and her partner, Christ the King School.
I am a lifelong parishioner of Christ the King, a former student, and the 6th Grade Language Arts and Religion teacher at Christ the King School. I have valued the 8 years that I have spent on faculty thus far. My time here has greatly impacted my teaching practices. More importantly, it has helped me to develop lasting relationships with teachers and families in the school and parish community.
As a former student, faculty member, and now parent at Christ the King School, the importance of one’s character, knowledge, and spirit is a focal part of my identity. Christ the King is not only where I developed my love for Christ, but also where the seed was planted for my devotion to finding Christ in others through education. I feel as though everyday I learn something new from students and colleagues about how Christ wants me to live my life and serve others. I feel so blessed that I can help to share my passion for reading with my students. I am countlessly thankful, that each day in Religion, I can share the wonders of the Old Testament and its beautiful applications to our modern lives with my students. My favorite part of teaching sixth grade is teaching students to embrace challenges they face knowing that God is always with them. Christ the King is where I have always been called to fulfill my vocation as an educator. It is truly my past, my present, and my future.
This year it has been a great joy to have my daughter, Mary Elise, join the school community in the 2 year old program. Having her at Christ the King has even further instilled in me the belief that it does take a village to raise a child, and I am so glad that the Christ the King community is our village. I feel honored to be a part of the children of Christ the King’s village.
Christ the King has been a home to my family from the first weekend we moved here from upstate New York to the present. We decided to attend CTK for Mass our first weekend here in Kentucky because it was closest to our apartment, and it was a Cathedral - something we did not have at home. Since that first Mass and our first Oktoberfest, we have found a loving, caring, and faith-filled community that has catered to our spiritual needs and welcomed these Yankees from the North.
At the time we moved here, I was looking for a teaching job, and Maria, my wife, was in graduate school. Finding a teaching job was a tough prospect since the school year had already started. I decided for the time being that I would sub anywhere I could just to stay in a classroom, even if it wasn’t my own. Through a series of what had to be Spirit-filled connections, we came in contact with Ms. Kathy Leonard, our CKS science teacher, who was then also in charge of substitutes. Learning I was a certified teacher, she encouraged me to apply for sub work at Christ the King. So I did what anyone looking for work would do: I put on my suit and went to talk to then-principal Karen McNay.
What started as a hope just to be added to the sub rotation miraculously turned into an interview for a job! I was shocked and ecstatic at the same time. I was not expecting this, and had no time to prepare. Over the course of three interviews, a botched sample lesson, and Mrs. Kelley Taylor enthusiastically agreeing to switch from social studies to sixth grade language arts and religion, I was offered the job and became the social studies teacher here at CKS.
I know the Holy Spirit was responsible for this whole process, beginning with that first weekend in Kentucky. Everything led to the moment when I would be able to fulfill my dream of being a teacher. I had my own idea of what that would look like; the Holy Spirit knew better and arranged so many things in my life to lead to this eventual destination. We all have our own ideas of what the future should be, but we need to slow down and see what is being done for us. Sometimes the obvious is just that: obvious.
Since being hired here at CKS in 2011, I have been blessed with a successful career and two beautiful boys, Lincoln and Maximilian, both of whom were baptized here by Fr. Gino. I have been to many Confirmations, Oktoberfests, Masses, and everything in between. This is home. This is the place where Lincoln goes to school in his PreK3 classroom, which he thoroughly enjoys and which has helped him grow and be more curious about the world around him. This is the place I hope will continue to be a home for my family as long as we are here in Kentucky. Ultimately, I hope my boys will call this place home as well. What more could a father want, than to have his sons grow up in a loving community that has Christ at its center in all that it does?