Large Catholic family. Our society wields the phrase as an epithet suggesting Catholics are weird or even irresponsible. I mean, don’t you know what causes that?
At OLR we wear the Large Catholic Family title as a badge of honor. Scripture tells us that fruitfulness is a sign of blessedness. So true. Yet the acceptance of this blessing requires sacrifice. Children are expensive. Children are complicated. They demand time and attention. And snacks.
Our Lady of the Rosary School does everything we can to make Catholic education affordable for the large families of the parish. That is why we created the Faithful Family Scholarship (FFS). Under Faithful Family, parents who are registered and active members of OLR, only pay tuition for the two oldest students enrolled in the school. All additional children can enroll tuition-free. It is that simple.
The Faithful Family program has brought many families into the parish and the school who would not otherwise be here. These families are holy, generous, and involved. They enrich our community. Many parishioners remember a time when Catholic schools were chock-full of large families. You couldn’t throw a classroom eraser without hitting a member of the Sullivan, Caputo, or Kowalski clan. Everyone knew everyone.
OLR is bringing that family culture back. This year, over 40% of OLR students come from Faithful Families. The percentage for Middle and Upper School is even higher. At most schools, teachers have to meet a brand-new set of parents every year. No one knows what to expect, and trust must be earned anew. At OLR, the teachers receive a class full of younger brothers and sisters of students they already taught. The relationship with the family is long-established and affection grows as years pass. This means the teachers have more energy to spend meeting the families that are truly new to them. Whether a family has one or five children in the school, everyone wins with Faithful Family.
The Faithful Family Scholarship is producing beautiful benefits for our school and parish, because it is itself beautiful. The program honors families who live out the Church’s teachings regarding openness to life. At OLR we know that God will bless each family uniquely. Whether that blessing is the gift of one or ten children, we will be ready to receive them with arms open.