Principal's Corner

Mrs. Maureen Ingham

Mrs. Ingham's Message for June 23, 2019

Happy Summer...I think it has finally arrived! Even if the weather has not cooperated, there are other signs that support the fact that another school year has come to an end and a couple of months to refresh and renew are on the horizon; books and supplies are stored away in cupboards, lockers are empty, and the halls are quiet with the exception of the busy sounds of deep cleaning and painting.

This has been a great year filled with lots of learning, many memories, and friendships built that will last a lifetime. For this, my last school news article until later in August, I decided to share the words of our Grade 8 graduates...a wonderfully amazing group of twenty young adults, who are leaving SPS a bit nervous about high school, excited about the challenges that lie ahead, curious as to what it will be like in another learning environment, and filled with much knowledge across all curriculums and deeply rooted in the foundation of God’s love. They speak so well...so honestly and so sincerely...

As one of their final writing assignments, the graduates were asked to share a famous (or maybe not so famous) quote that best described them and added meaning to their life...here is some of what we learned about the Class of 2019:

Be the change you wish to see in the world

You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take

Learn from yesterday...live for today and hope for tomorrow

We don’t make mistakes...just happy little accidents

The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or touched...they must be felt with the heart

Traveling leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller

Be happy and a reason will come along

It’s not about what you deserve...it’s about what you believe

Just be yourself...there is no one better

Don’t take life too seriously...you’ll never get out of it alive

True champions are not always the ones that win, but the ones with the most guts

The advice I wish I could have given myself is not to care, all the time, about what others are thinking

And when asked to list their favorite memories for this, their last year at SPS, the #1 answer was a resounding CLASS RETREAT. If you recall, we all traveled to Christ the King Seminary back in September to spend two days together to help build us as a class of leaders and friends. Their reflections were heartfelt and sincere and the adults in attendance could not agree more...

“We learned so much about each other...we got really close to everyone...we discovered ways we could be there for each other...what to say and what not to talk about...how to make each of us laugh...trying to always be positive...being a good friend, even when it is tough...and finally ...accepting each classmate, and ultimately each person along life’s path, with respect and dignity and honoring their differences.” Those are all life lessons that will take these children far...and to think that this was THEIR favorite memory makes me know we are doing the right things for our students.

THANK YOU Cole, Olivia, Mario, Patrick, Jamie, Michael, Lauren, Kieara, Sydney, Libby, Ethan, Jillian, Sophia, Marisa, Layla, Matthew, Carlo, Joe, Kathryn, Alexandra, and Olivia, for all you have taught me this year. And....THANK YOU parents for sharing this amazing group of young adults with us. God bless the CLASS OF 2019, and remember that Saint Peter’s will always be your home. God bless Saint Peter’s forever!

Maureen Ingham, Principal


Mrs. Ingham's Message for June 16, 2019

Our final school Mass was held at 9 a.m. on Friday, June 14, and amidst lots of red, white and blue, we bid farewell to Sister Ann and thanked her for all that she has done for us over her years as Pastoral Associate. Sister has been a smiling face and a warm hug for all of us on many occasions, and while we know she is “retiring,” we also know that she has promised to be at school a few days a week and help us out where needed. In order to facilitate her time at school, we will identify an area that we will call Sister’s Place and at Mass the children presented her with her very own rocking chair and the parents gave her an inscribed blanket to spread when she is meeting with a small group of students and/or reading a story. God bless and thank you, Sister Ann, for the gift of YOU!

And it was a true celebration as we welcomed Father Tom as the newest shepherd of the

St. Peter’s flock. Everyone has been anxious to meet Father and to gather for our favorite part of the week… Mass…and hear his message. (I am sure he has been pretty anxious to meet all of us...after all, it is 240 of us and only one of him ). We are all excited to show Father all about our school, and to see what he has in store for us. In order to make him feel like an old member of the SPS family, the students presented him with an SPS shirt and cap. If he is going to walk around Center Street as the “new kid in town,” everyone needs to know to whom “that new guy” belongs… and he belongs to Saint Peter’s!!! Welcome Father Tom and God bless you as you begin your new priestly ministry here with us. You’re gonna love us...and we will all work together to take good care of you!

Tomorrow evening at 7:00 p.m., the Grade 8 graduates will walk down the center aisle of St. Peter Church surrounded by their family and friends who have all had a part in helping them reach this point in their spiritual and academic careers. We couldn’t be more proud of the 20 young adults who have been a part, and will continue to be a part, of our SPS family. God bless Carlo, Patrick, Alexandra, Lauren, Sydney, Joseph, Ethan, Matthew, Libby, Marisa, Kathryn, Michael, Jillian, Jamie, Layla, Kieara, Cole, Sophie, Olivia, and Mario. We will miss you more than you know and we wish you love and thanks for all you have been to us at SPS.

We are at the end of another school year and this week we are filled with many celebrations, farewells and good lucks.

Maureen Ingham, Principal

Some Additional Notes from the Principal:

How could I neglect to wish all of the Dads, Grandpas, Uncles and Caretakers a most Happy Father’s Day today. God bless you all and thank you for all you do for us each and every day. Happy Father’s Day to my Dad in heaven...miss you every day!

Please remember to add your team to the list of golfers for our annual celebration at the Niagara Frontier Country Club, coming up in July. Thanks to Mike & Bridget DeDario for taking on the chairmanship of this event...it will be a great day for all!

The school office will be open throughout the summer months on Tuesday and Thursday from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. If you need anything at all, you can reach Maureen through her email at [email protected] or by leaving a message on the school phone at 754-4470.

We do have some openings in certain grades if you are thinking about making a change for your child. We are happy to take you on a tour or answer any questions you might have...just give us a call.

Please help yourself to “free shower heads” that will be located in the back of church next weekend after all the Masses. These were given to us...and now to you.


Mrs. Ingham's Message for June 2, 2019

There may be only 14 days left in this school year, but our month of June is filled to the brim with end of year activities, celebrations and EXAMS!!! Please keep us all in your prayers as we do our best to prepare, study, take and score the work of our final efforts this year...for the teachers and the students… final exam time is upon us! And also, we ask you to pray for patience for all as we wind down all that we have to do to close out this school year. We appreciate your prayers.

For the upcoming two weeks, I will talk a bit about our graduating students and their high schools, awards and aspirations, but today, I share some of the June events to which you are all invited:

June 4—Grade 2 will unveil the individual books they have written and illustrated at 1:30 in the gym

June 14—final whole school Mass and farewell to Sister Ann.... reception to follow in the cafeteria (9:00 a.m. Mass)

June 17—Grade 8 Graduation Mass at 7:00 p.m. Reception to follow in the cafeteria. (Father David will preside, along with our new Pastor.)

June 18—PreK Moving Up Day at 9:00 a.m. in the gym

June 19—Kindergarten graduation with 9:00 a.m. Mass in church (Father David is planning to preside, along with our new Pastor. )

June 20—Field Day 8:30—11:00 a.m. at Kiwanis Park

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There are still some openings in some of our classes for the 2019-2020 school year...please call the office at once if you are thinking about SPS for your child or children...we are a great family of learners and we welcome you to come and check us out.

Due to our high interest, our summer camp is almost completely full, we have opened a third Pre-K class, we are anxiously awaiting our newest room with new furniture (Grade 5), and we will soon roll out our 2019-2020 school year theme. While our classrooms may be empty over the summer, we are all busy at work getting ready for another great year at SPS!

And from all of us at Saint Peter RC School...we extend a warm and friendly welcome to our new pastor, Father Tom Mahoney. We know that he will love our school and all of us within, and that he will be a guiding light and an integral part of helping us continue to grow. Together we will move forward as the Body of Christ!

Maureen Ingham, Principal


Mrs. Ingham's Message for May 26, 2019

Back on April 8, Josh Maloni from the Lewiston Sentinel called and asked me to respond to the question, ”How do you feel about the announcement of Father David being transferred?” Like I was hit on the head with the proverbial brick...like I am losing my very dear friend, like what will I ever do without him here as my teammate and my support??? What I told Josh in my message to him is what follows as I tried to add some meat to those very obtuse and rather generic feelings. I am not really sure what he expected when he left me that message on Monday morning, but here is a piece of how I tearfully responded. And as I wrote this to do my best to let Josh know how I felt, I am pretty sure I was speaking on behalf of all of St. Peter’s School and Parish and the entire Lewiston area community.

Those who know me well know that sometimes I speak from my “big girl” head...that’s when I say the things that are logical and sensible and very grown up. So from that perspective I am proud of this opportunity for Fr. David and know, from having worked with him here at St. Peter’s for the past six years, that this is a new and important step for him at a parish that needs his leadership, his creativity and his masterful way to move a community forward. The challenges that await him are great, but because he has taught me, and so many others, that we can do whatever we need to do if we place our trust in the Lord...the community of Our Lady of Victory—the school, the foundation, the parish, the basilica, and all of the people that it encompasses—will flourish as they too learn that they need only to trust in the Lord and follow the path that He has laid for them. I have absolutely no doubt that Monsignor David LiPuma is the man for this job and that God, who has had this plan for him, will guide him in this newest endeavor, just as he has always done. I know that Fr. David is leaving Lewiston to continue to do God’s good work among the people of Lackawanna and the larger Diocese of Buffalo. And I also know that under Father’s unstoppable efforts and deep commitment, Father Nelson Baker will be canonized in his time!

But...when I am not in “my big girl head,” and I am speaking from my heart, the real me, my response to Josh moves to a whole different level of feeling. Fr. David came to St. Peter’s and immediately we connected. We shared the same vision for Catholic education and for meeting the needs of each and every child and family. We worked together to make sure we were doing all we could to meet those needs and to find new and different ways to bring our school and parish community together. We even learned, early on, that we read the exact same morning devotions and often compared our thoughts about the passage for the day, before the day even started for most. We continuously marveled at the wonders of the message and how, so very often, it carried a meaning that was spot on for the charge that laid ahead of us for that day. “Just God having a sense of humor,” Father would say!

He taught me about support, and caring and compromise...about patience and listening and always having time to do the right thing...he taught me because he modeled all of those things. That is who he is and who he wanted us all to be...more like Jesus...kinder, more thoughtful, less judgmental, always aware and deeply sensitive to others. I will miss seeing those characteristics every day and know that he came here to leave those messages with me, and others, to carry on. I hope I can do half of what he taught me. Father loved our staff and made them feel special every time he was in their presence. He loved his parishioners and was there for each one...no matter their need or the time or the place...he was there. But he mostly loved the children...and the love that our SPS kids have for Fr. David is unmatchable. Just come to Mass at 9:00 a.m. any Friday and you will witness the greatest outpouring of love and respect and the deepest devotion as they listen for every word. Ask any child...Friday Mass with Fr. David is their favorite part of the week!

I will miss our weekly meetings where we planned and shared together, that sometimes went on for longer than we intended because he was such a great listener...and I am known for being such a great talker.  I will miss early morning and late night texts with a thought or an idea shared, an emotion put in check or a funny story that couldn’t wait to be retold...he was always there! I will miss his sense of humor and his willingness to try anything, with a smile, and later tell me that maybe next time we might do that a bit differently... a gentle way to let me down. I will miss Mass, where words had new meaning and understanding my faith grew deeper than it has ever been in my 66 years of life. I will miss fun times with laughter and celebrating, knowing my family events and moments were just as important to him as they were to me. He is family! I will miss his ability to always get to the point, in a smooth and gentle way, with fewer words and deeper thought. (I still need to work on that). I will miss his willingness to step into whatever I needed him to do: cover a meeting, speak to a student, call the Diocese, or bury a friend whose pastor was not there. I hope I can do the same for others when I am needed. I think I got the message to Josh: I am going to miss Fr. David very much!!! But while he is not here physically, the imprints he will leave are the legacy that will get us through these tough weeks ahead and encourage us as we warmly welcome his successor and carry on the great work that has built us all over the past six years...physically, structurally, educationally and most importantly, spiritually.

Fr. David is my pastor, my priest, my confidante, my boss, my right arm, and sometimes my left, and my dearest friend. He is moving away from Center Street, but he will forever be close in my heart. He has taught me more than he knows and I am a better Christian because of the gifts that he has shared. God bless you, Fr. David. Go with God, as you always do, and I will do my best to be part of the team you are leaving behind, that continues to sow the seeds that you have so lovingly planted here in Lewiston.

Love, Maureen