"I love teaching Theology. It's my passion" - Mr. Kiessling

The religious education program at Monsignor Haddad Middle School seeks to instill in students an informed faith. The catholic theological and spiritual tradition bespeaks a very rich heritage. By exposing students to this reality through a challenging intellectual and practical education, we hope to help students understand in a more mature way the Roman Catholic faith, its development, and place in modern society. Students are challenged to see that their faith is relevant in today's world.

Grade six

Students in grade six learn about the stories and promises of the Old Testament, and how to interpret the scriptures in a way that makes sense in the modern world. Students will also learn how to think and act justly using the commandments and wisdom literature as their guide. Since the Old Testament is the preparation for the New Testament, students will spend a good deal of time understanding how the various persons, places, and events of the Old Testament foreshadow its fulfillment in the New in the person of Jesus Christ. Connections between the Gospels (particularly Matthew) and the Pentateuch are highlighted. The liturgical / sacramental life of the Catholic Church will be taught through the prism of Old Testaments types. A special emphasis will be placed upon sacraments as encounters with Christ who promises a new relationship with humanity in His Kingdom. A highlight is the fall sixth grade retreat.

Grade seven

Seventh grade students will continue studying the Bible with the emphasis being upon the New Testament of Jesus Christ as it fulfills the promises of the Old Testaments. They will begin the year with acquiring a firm grasp of Jesus as a real historical figure who lived, preached, died and rose again in the first century. Many facets of Jewish life and belief will be explored. Students will also learn about how the New Testament Canon was created, and what gave impetus for its creation. Students will be encouraged to compare the life of their parish with the life of early Christians. The sacramental and liturgical life of the Catholic Church will be explored through the prism of the New Testament with an eye to its modern theological development. Once again students will understand the sacraments are encounters with Christ who is working in and through the sacraments to make them into holy members of his body, the Church. The grace given in each sacrament will also be studied in greater depth.

Grade eight

During the eighth grade year, students will be studying the moral teachings of Jesus Christ as it is taught by the Catholic Church. The end in view of this course is to help students understand not only what the moral teachings of Catholicism are, but also the reasons for why the Church teaches them. To this end students will first come to appreciate the foundations of the Church’s teachings: human dignity, natural law, virtue, sources for the moral act, etc. The sacramental life of the Church as it bears upon the spiritual growth in shaping one’s moral character will also figure prominently in the course. Students will understand the effect of Original Sin upon the human person and Christ’s mission to save us and heal us of this original wound. Students will also explore the Catholic Church’s Social teaching about human life, and human beings as members of a larger society. Students will focus on the call to be a disciple who enters society to give witness to truth of Jesus Christ in imitation of their Savior who entered the world to be its Light (John 1:1-5). Various moral issues current in today’s world also be addressed.

Chapel

Students go to chapel on average of two Monday mornings a month to listen to presentations on moral and spiritual topics. Assemblies involving student council and student council elections also take place during chapel periods.


Christian Service

In keeping with the school’s mission statement, students are encouraged to volunteer their time in service to others. While each student should strive to perform service as frequently as their commitments permit, a minimum number of service hours has been established for each grade per academic year. Some opportunities for service, through the school and parish, will be announced during the academic year. Because these opportunities are limited, students should seek service opportunities outside of the school community.

Service is the selfless giving of oneself to benefit others with no expectation of recognition, reward, or acknowledgment. With this in mind, there are many types of volunteering that will qualify as service hours. Some good examples of service include volunteering at homeless shelters or food pantries, assisting elderly neighbors with various tasks, visiting the elderly, volunteering at Charles River Arc, and helping with Church activities. Service does not include acts in return for compensation or acts that students are otherwise obligated to perform, such as chores at home, responsibilities to family members, or altar serving only once on the weekend. If, however, a student receives compensation for their service and then donates that money to charity, the hours worked would count toward service. Any questions regarding what work qualifies as service should be referred to the religious education teachers who oversee the performance of service hours.

Opportunities for service will be published when they come available.


Christian Service Hours

Requirements

Grade 68 hours
Grade 712 hours
Grade 815 hours

Students are expected to keep track of the number of service hours they have performed as well as the kind of service they have performed during each academic year. Parents are urged to assist their children in monitoring service hours and finding service opportunities. When possible, parents should join with their sons and daughters in their volunteer efforts. At the end of May, students will report their service hours to their religion teacher. Parents will attest to the veracity of this report by signing it.