Update Center

Welcome to the Nativity Update Center, a dedicated space on our website designed to keep parents, staff, and the entire Nativity community informed about the effect of the Coronavirus on our community.

This Update Center serves as an ongoing reliable resource for the entire Nativity community, demonstrating proactive and transparent access to critical information. We will continue to update this with news and information as it becomes available. It is our mission to keep you informed on how we are preparing to cope with Coronavirus and any other potential health-related or time-critical topics. We hope you’ll find it useful.

A Letter From the Pastor – April 28, 2020

Dear Nativity Community –

As another week of the Stay at Home, order passes us, we look forward to the days when we can gather again and see each other. When things do reopen there will be a new normal for us all. From wearing masks in public to fewer people allowed to gather we must do our part to help stop the spread of this virus. This week staff in the school and parish office are working to finalize the plans for all the end of year events. We are trying to keep these events as “normal” as possible in this highly unusual time.

While our campus is closed work around the campus has continued. A new roof was installed on the school building, work in the cafeteria and the handicap bathroom in the church are well underway. Several outside projects have been started as well as regular summer maintenance. These projects were committed too long before the Coronavirus outbreak and by doing them now we are able to keep our maintenance staff as well as some contractors working. This work also puts our facilities in excellent shape and resolves some of the ongoing issues we have had. More information about these projects can be found on our Facebook pages.

This weeks Weekly Encounter with the Risen Christ is Peter and John Reach the Tomb John 20:1-10, and can be found on the website at https://www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates/weekly-encounters/. Today we received word from the Archdiocese and updated about Masses/liturgies which are now suspended through May 29. Hopefully, we will be able to celebrate Pentecost together on May 30/31.

We are continuing to post updates about Nativity’s response to the Coronavirus in the Update Center on our website at www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates you can also contact Rudy Gruenke, Director of Systems & Special Projects at (513) 531-3164 or rudy.gruenke@nativity-cincinnati.org if you have any questions about our response to the coronavirus.

Sincerely,

Fr. Paul

Feast of St. Joseph Letter

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The COVID-19 Virus continues to shadow our lives. We pray for those who are sick to recover, for our children to learn and be healthy, for those who produce our food, and labor in our grocery stores and pharmacies.

We pray for the scientists and healthcare workers, doctors, nurses, those who clean and maintain our hospitals, nursing homes, we pray for all who work in the ministry of healthcare. We pray for our police, our firefighters, our EMT’s and first responders. We pray for our businesses big and small, for employers and employees, for all who are out of work. The Corona shadow is dark and large and seems to overwhelm us.

We are an Easter people who see the light of Christ still burning brightly. In that light we know all the saints are gathered around the altar in heaven praying for us, taking our prayers to the Father, through Jesus the Son, in the Holy Spirit.

I take comfort in knowing that  Mary, the mother of Jesus and Joseph her husband, place our prayers and intentions into the arms of Jesus. All this is in mind and heart as we celebrate the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker on May 1st.

Joseph, the husband of Mary is the Patron of all Workers. I hope you will take time to give your prayers and intentions to him. To help us in opening our hearts to St. Joseph the following are offered:

  • Fill out the enclosed prayer intention sheet and place in the enclosed envelope. You may either mail the envelope back to us or bring your intention sheet to church and place it in the basket in front of St. Joseph. Spend time in prayer with St. Joseph before the Blessed Sacrament in church.
  • As you leave church, please take an Easter candle for your prayer at home. (Home Easter candles are available on the tables in the back of church). If you would like to have one, but cannot get to church to pick it up, please give us a call or email us and we will be sure to get one delivered to you. (513) 531-3164    parish@nativity-cincinnati.org
  • Pray the Prayer of St. Joseph
  • Pray the Litany of St. Joseph

With the prayers of Mary and Joseph and all the saints, be assured of God’s total and complete love for each of us.

Be well and God bless you,

Fr. Paul

P.S.  May is the month dedicated to Mary. Customs encourage us to build May altars in our homes that remind us of our mother Mary’s care for us all. It may also help us focus on our prayer. We encourage you to bring flowers to church and place them before the image of Mary throughout the month of May.

Thoughts on Journey by Fr. Paul

Often when we talk about life, we use the image of a journey.  To journey is to move.  We journey from somewhere to somewhere.  When we journey, we walk away from the familiar and well known to that which is unfamiliar, perhaps uncertain, often frightening.  Frequently our fears keep us from taking even the first step on our journey.  However, we can only get to our goals if we move.

Our life journey regularly calls us to change our values, attitudes, preconceived opinions and judgements.  If we embrace the journey God offers to us, we must move forward.  We either grow or something in us dies.

In Sunday’s Gospel, the two disciples are disappointed and disillusioned.  As they journey someone walks with them.  They talk, yet he does not seem to understand.  Nearly in despair they tell the man: “We were hoping.”  They hoped Jesus was the one who would redeem.  Now they must leave behind misunderstandings and open themselves anew. 

Suddenly Jesus reveals himself to the travelers and they become aware of growth, truth and new life.

We too are travelers just like Cleopas and his companion.  Our life is not what we had planned.  Much has been changed or mixed up.  Instead of gathering for Sunday Masses, graduations, weddings, baseball games and so much more, we are staying at home practicing social distancing and washing our hands often and scrupulously. 

We, like the disciples in the Gospel are disappointed, disillusioned.  We too like them must recognize the companionship of Jesus on our journey.  Through the light of Jesus, we realize our disappointments mean very little.  We know that no journey can be a failure if we walk with Jesus and we end up far from where we expected to be when we first set out.

Obviously, life seems burdensome as we keep the social distancing and practice staying home.  It is a challenge, it is difficult, but let us make this sacrifice so that living sacrificially will help others to simply live.  Let us practice social distancing and stay home.  It appears to be the best way to combat this virus.

May God bless us and keep us.

Fr. Paul

P.S. We are continuing to post updates about Nativity’s response to the Coronavirus in the Update Center on our website at www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates you can also contact Rudy Gruenke, Director of Systems & Special Projects at (513) 531-3164 or rudy.gruenke@nativity-cincinnati.org if you have any questions about our response to the coronavirus

As the angelus rings at 6:00 am, noon, and 6:00 pm, please pray the following prayer

COVID-19: A Prayer of Solidarity

For all who have contracted coronavirus,
We pray for care and healing.
For those who are particularly vulnerable,
We pray for safety and protection.
For all who experience fear or anxiety,
We pray for peace of mind and spirit.
For affected families who are facing difficult decisions between food on the table or public safety,
We pray for policies that recognize their plight.
For those who do not have adequate health insurance,
We pray that no family will face financial burdens alone.
For those who are afraid to access care due to immigration status,
We pray for recognition of the God-given dignity of all.
For our brothers and sisters around the world,
We pray for shared solidarity.
For public officials and decisionmakers,
We pray for wisdom and guidance.
Father, during this time may your Church be a sign of hope, comfort and love to all.
Grant peace.
Grant comfort.
Grant healing.
Be with us, Lord.
Amen.

 

End of the Year Information

Dear Nativity Community –

This week Governor DeWine officially announced that schools will remain online for the rest of the school year. While we are sad that we won’t get to be together again this school year, we know that this is best for reducing the spread of this virus.

The Nativity staff has been working for the last month knowing that this might happen and making plans for various end of year activities like awards assembly and graduation, as well as how to get things cleaned out and returned to students so that regular summer maintenance can occur.
Below are details about some of the end of year events, additional details about these events will come as we get closer to them.

  • Online schooling will continue until May 15th – No new assignments will be given the week of the 18th to allow students to turn in any late items by Tuesday, May 19, as well as teachers’ time to work on report cards.
  • First Communion – is on hold until we know more about when we can have Mass again. While the current guidelines state the Mass may resume May 4th, we are anticipating that it will be extended. As soon as we have more information we will share it.
  • Spring Sports – All spring sports are canceled. Boosters will be issuing refunds for all registration fees. Please allow 2 weeks for these to be processed.
  • Upper School Exams – There will be no Upper School exams for the third trimester.
  • Walk-a-Thon and Spirit Day – PTA is working on plans to hold both events virtually. More information will be coming in the next few weeks.
  • Awards Assembly – Awards Assembly will be a virtual event and will be posted on the website on May 18th. Certificates will be sent home with students’ personal items at the end of the year.
  • Graduation – Graduation will be posted on May 18th for families to watch, the church bells will ring at 8pm to honor the class of 2020. We will also be creating a special website for the Class of 2020. 8th grade parents and students be on the lookout for additional information next week.
  • Closing Prayer Service – The closing prayer service will be posted on May 21st. 7th Grade parents (and students) will receive additional information about their participation in this virtual event.
  • Report Cards – Will be distributed via email on May 27, 2020
  • Personal Item Pickup – We are working on a detailed plan for this and will have more information in the coming weeks.

We are continuing to post updates about Nativity’s response to the Coronavirus and will post additional information in the Update Center on our website at www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates you can also contact Rudy Gruenke, Director of Systems & Special Projects at (513) 531-3164 or rudy.gruenke@nativity-cincinnati.org if you have any questions about our response to the coronavirus.

We appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding as we all work through this unique and historic time.

Sincerely,
Fr. Paul Deluca                                  Rudy Gruenke                                   Dave Arbogast

As the angelus rings at 6:00 am, noon, and 6:00 pm, please pray the following prayer

Prayer for a Time of Public Health Concerns

Since the moments of our life unfold, O God,
according to your good pleasure,
receive the prayers and sacrificial offerings
by which we implore your mercy
for our brothers and sisters who are ill,
that, having been anxious for them in their danger,
we may rejoice at their recovery of health.

For scientists, health professionals, public officials,
and all who are serving the common good in this
difficult and uncertain time, may they be
filled with wisdom and understanding.

Amen.

Pray:   Our Father  –  Hail Mary  –   Glory Be

A Letter from the Pastor

Dear Nativity Community –

This is a challenging time and I hope you are taking time to take care of you and your family. I encourage you to check on neighbors, and other parishioners to help make sure everyone is doing well. I am currently working my way through the parish directory making phone calls and checking in on people and have greatly enjoyed the chance to connect with people on the phone since we can’t in person.

On Friday, April 17, 2020, I directed all parish leaders that there be no more fundraising efforts made at Nativity for special events or organizations.  At the same time, we need to continue our support of the Sunday collection, Annual Fund, Tuition and St. Vincent de Paul. Many of our benefactors are carrying heavy burdens at this time in order to keep their businesses afloat and active.  I believe it would be inappropriate at this time to add another burden to their already heavy load. The full text of this directive can be found in the Update Center online. 

Yesterday Governor DeWine announced that school will remain online for the rest of the school year. The school and parish staff have been working for the last few weeks on plans for if we do not return to school, we will be finalizing those plans this week and will share them as soon as they are ready. At this time we have not received information from the Archdiocese about Mass but will update you when we know more.  

This weeks Weekly Encounter with the Risen Christ is The Myrrh-Bearers at the Tomb from Mark 16:1-8. The Weekly Encounters are intended for use in your Domestic Church during the Fifty Days of Easter.  The order of prayer provided is the same week to week, with a different Gospel account of the Risen Lord’s appearance to his disciples, and to us.  Each week, now through Pentecost, a new encounter will be proclaimed and prayed.  It can be found on the website at https://www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates/weekly-encounters/

We are continuing to post updates about Nativity’s response to the Coronavirus in the Update Center on our website at www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates you can also contact Rudy Gruenke, Director of Systems & Special Projects at (513) 531-3164 or rudy.gruenke@nativity-cincinnati.org if you have any questions about our response to the coronavirus.

Sincerely,

Fr. Paul

A Directive from Fr. Paul

Dear Parish Leaders,

As of April 17, 2020, I am directing that there be no more fundraising efforts made at Nativity for special events or organizations.  At the same time, we need to continue our support of the Sunday collection, Annual Fund, Tuition and St. Vincent de Paul. 

This directive helps us to respond to the challenges we are facing in the community regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.  Many of our benefactors are carrying heavy burdens at this time in order to keep their businesses afloat and active.  I believe it would be inappropriate at this time to add another burden to their already heavy load.  This directive remains in effect until further communication from me.

What I do ask is that members of all Nativity groups and organizations join together on Saturday, April 25th at 10:00 am for an hour of prayer for all our benefactors.  The church bells will ring for 3 minutes at 10:00 am and again for 3 minutes at 11:00 am.  We will lift up the needs and intentions of our business community to God.  We pray all will have a successful recovery from this pandemic financially, spiritually and physically.

I appreciate if you would send me an email list of all your supporters by Tuesday, April 21st, so they can be notified of our intention of prayer for them on Saturday, April 25th at 10:00 am. 

I realize this will cause some setbacks with the fundraising plans and programs you have been looking forward to. I am grateful for your understanding, support and prayer at this time of crisis. 

Keep well and may God bless you always.

Fr. Paul

New Grading Procedures for Online Learning

Dear Nativity Parents and Students,

First, let me say I hope you and your family are safe and healthy as you read this letter. The teachers, administrative staff, and Parish staff want to thank you for your patience and understanding as we have been adjusting, like you, to the changes we have made in our lives over the last few weeks. I am extremely appreciative of our students, parents, teachers, and staff for their positivity, flexibility, and support during our online learning process. It has become evident that in order to continue to educate our students in a compassionate manner, we take into consideration the variety of difficulties that our families and teachers have been enduring during this time.

After consultation with our teachers, parents, teachers/administrators from our cluster schools, and the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, we are implementing new grading procedures for the remainder of the school year. These changes are necessary as a result of our students, teachers, and families being placed in circumstances beyond their control. Many of our students need, “face to face” interaction with their teachers and classmates to promote their growth as learners.

These changes to the grading procedures start from now until the end of the school year. The teachers will begin this process on Monday, April 20. The new system of grading is not reflected in the Interim reports that went out today for students in grades 4 through 8. Interims include the four weeks that classes were held in school before the shutdown. The final grades for the year will take into account all the changes to grading that are listed below.

Grading Procedures for Kindergarten, First Grade and Second Grade:

  1. Teachers will continue grading under the 1,2,3 standards-based report card
  2. The students will not be issued a “1” on the third-trimester report card.
  3. The teacher will be utilizing more comments as a formative tool to assess the students.

Grading Procedures for Third Grade:

  1. Teachers will continue grading under the system of O, S, N  of grading for report cards.
  2. Report cards will be entered as normal, but no N’s for the third trimester.
  3. The use of; exceeds expectations, satisfactory and unsatisfactory will be used for many assignments.
  4. The teacher will be utilizing more comments as a formative tool to assess the students.

Grading Procedures for Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Eighth grades:

  1. Teachers will be utilizing a system of exceeds expectations, satisfactory, and unsatisfactory for assignments during the remainder of the third trimester.
  2. Grades will be entered on the report card for the third trimester using the following scale:

    Assignments for the Third Trimester Report Card Grades for Third Trimester
    85-100 Exceeds Expectations A+ to B
    77-84   Satisfactory B-  to C-
    70-76   Unsatisfactory D+ to D
  3. Teachers will not be issuing F’s for the third trimester, D is the lowest grade the student will receive on the report card for the third trimester.
  4. Students with a D-  will have the grade rounded up to a “D” on the report card for the third trimester. Note: This is for D- only
  5. The teacher will be utilizing more comments as a formative tool to assess the students on assignments and the report card.
  6. Report Card grades will be entered as normal for the school year.

Important Note: Under this amended system of grading, turning in assignments can actually improve a student’s yearly average, as well as help them grow academically by completing the work.

If you have any questions, please contact your student’s teacher or Mr. Arbogast. Nativity School is working toward transitioning to Online Learning Grading as a means to minimize the already existing stress for our students, parents, and teachers.

We are continuing to post updates about Nativity’s response to the Coronavirus in the Update Center on our website at www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates you can also contact Rudy Gruenke, Director of Systems & Special Projects at (513) 531-3164 or rudy.gruenke@nativity-cincinnati.org if you have any questions about our response to the coronavirus.

Peace and good health,

Mr. Arbogast
Principal

A Letter from the Pastor – April 14, 2020

Dear Nativity Community:

I hope you all are doing well and had a great albeit different Easter. I truly missed celebrating the resurrection of our Lord with all of you this year. I hope you will take some time to visit the church building to see the beautiful Easter flowers and take a candle for your prayer at home.  Starting this week I will be including “WEEKLY ENCOUNTERS WITH THE RISEN CHRIST”. 

The Weekly Encounters are intended for use in your Domestic Church during the Fifty Days of Easter.  The order of prayer provided is the same week to week, with a different Gospel account of the Risen Lord’s appearance to his disciples, and to us.  Each week, now through Pentecost, a new encounter will be proclaimed and prayed. 

In “praying the Encounters” a visual is always helpful.  It is suggested that the household come together and create a mosaic, or some other art form, to depict the scene described in the Gospel passage.  Your imagination and creativity are the only limits.  What would the Encounter of the Myrrh-Bearing Women look like?  Three figures, each with a jar of perfume standing before an open tomb?  You decide, and create.  Once created, give this artwork a place of honor where your household prays.

It is also helpful, before praying the Encounters to assign a leader of prayer, a reader of Scripture, and any roles – maybe a leader of song!  Prepare the Scripture passage to be proclaimed beforehand in your household Bible, as well.  Each Encounter’s Gospel citation will be posted weekly on the Parish Website, the Parish/School Newsletter, the on-line Bulletin, and other communications. This week’s Weekly Encounter can be downloaded at https://www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates/weekly-encounters/.

We are continuing to post updates about Nativity’s response to the Coronavirus in the Update Center on our website at www.nativity-cincinnati.org/updates you can also contact Rudy Gruenke, Director of Systems & Special Projects at (513) 531-3164 or rudy.gruenke@nativity-cincinnati.org if you have any questions.

Please continue to pray for all those afflicted by illness and those who are working to prevent the spread. This won’t last forever; we will get through this. 

Sincerely, 

Fr. Paul 

Concern or question?

Safety is one of our top priorities at Nativity. If you have a question, concern or comment about any health or safety issue, please contact Rudy Gruenke IV, Director of Systems & Special Projects at (513) 513-3164 or rudy.gruenke@nativity-cincinnati.org.

 

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Additional Resources

Provided by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: