|K4J kids dance up a storm to the song "I've Got a Mission."|
January 15, 2010. Bryan, TX. Something was happening bright and
early at St Joseph’s Elementary School. Led by a group
of fifth graders, the school’s first through fourth-grade children were
bobbing up and down like jumping beans and singing their
hearts out to the song “I´ve Got a Mission.”
Morning assembly at St Joseph’s is pretty exciting these days,
thanks to the adoption of the K4J program, which
fosters virtue through bright and colorful packages of activities, including
contagiously fun sing-along pop songs (with hand motions, of course).
But today was also a special day: it was Vocations
Awareness Week, and the kids were going to be visited
by a “Living Museum” of various vocational specimens.
The purpose of the day’s special assembly was to
help the children understand that the fun song “I’ve Got
a Mission” has a real message: God calls us to
follow him in specific ways, and following his plan for
our lives is the key to happiness.
To kick off the
day, Tom Deming, the principal of St Joseph’s Elementary School,
spoke to the children about how learning God’s word helped
him to know God’s will for his life. In his
short talk, he explained how his relationship with God had
helped him to decide to leave aside his business major
in college and focus on the field of education. The
decision, he said, has made him happy.
|The Fernandes talk about the vocation to married life and the diaconate.|
Mr. and Mrs. Ron
Fernandes spoke to the children about the vocation of married
life and the deaconate. After 21 years of marriage, they
have four children with a fifth on the way. And
now, after five years of study and preparation, Mr. Fernandes
will be ordained a permanent deacon on February 6th. This
news met with a warm round of applause from the
During his talk, Mr. Fernandes told the students, "The
right question is not what do I want to do
with my life, but what does God want me to
do with my life. The key to happiness is to
follow God´s will for your life."
Although none of the religious
sisters from the community of the Apostles of the Interior
Life were able to make it that day (they were on
silent retreat), Monsignor John McCaffery spoke about the vocation to
religious life and the priesthood during his homily at Mass.
The day closed with an enthusiastic rendition of another catchy
K4J sing-along tune: the “Sea Scroll Scholar Song.” Led
by their K4J captains, the children bobbed up and down,
working hard to get the hand motions right.
The K4J impact
of the dynamism of K4J is the way it offers
younger children accessible role models in slightly older “captains” who
put on skits, lead activities, and help ignite the K4J
“It’s fun to teach the little kids the songs, even
though it’s embarrassing,” said Nicholas, a fifth grade captain. He
added, “It’s fun to see them enjoying the songs.”
another fifth grade captain, said, “I like doing K4J because
|A group of K4J captains (5th graders) and some volunteers lead the Sea Scroll Scholar Song dance.|
we get to be leaders. I like helping the little
kids learn the songs and the virtues.”
“They are almost as
smart as us,” she conceded generously.
According to Kristy Barfknecht, a
fifth grade teacher, K4J has made a noticeable impact on
“K4J has strengthened the leadership skills for my
students in my classroom. My students have become more outspoken
about their faith and more capable of sharing the virtues
that we have learned through K4J," she said.
Robye Harvey, a
K4J volunteer and organizer, agreed. "K4J brings the fun and
excitement that children receive at VBS to God´s truth all
year long. The virtue program, with its authentic Catholic teaching,
strengthens students´ awareness of their faith and the happy life
God provides when they follow His Son."
To find out more
about how K4J can enrich school, parish, and home-based programs,
visit the web site at www.k4j.org. To learn more
about the upcoming K4J Vacation Bible School program, click here.