Faucheux: My St. John of Arc testimony
“To say that I am made in the image of God is to say that love is the reason for my existence, for God is love. Love is my true identity. Selflessness is my true self. Love is my true character. Love is my name.” – Thomas Merton.
This is what my seventh grade class lived by this year. We learned that we are love and that we would not exist without it. Love is what we were made from, what we are made of and what we make. Our teachers, our classmates, our school and our world are made from one person who loved us first and who gave us the ability to love. So here I am, telling you why I love St. Joan of Arc and how it has loved me into who I am today.
I attended St. Joan of Arc Catholic School for nine years. During my time at SJA I learned what love really means. Love was all around our school. The teachers loved their students, the students loved their teachers and everyone loved everyone. The teachers really showed me what love meant and how they loved in their daily lives. Love is shown through many ways, and each of my teachers has shown exactly that.
My first year at St. Joan of Arc was in Pre-K 4, during the 2011-2012 school year, and my teacher was Mrs. Debbie Melancon. I asked Mrs. Debbie, “Why did you want to become a teacher?” She replied by saying, “When I went to college, I went to school to be a preschool teacher, but when I graduated from college, I didn’t know if I wanted to do that. My first job was at St. Peter, and I truly enjoyed my first year there. So, that’s how I started teaching.” Mrs. Debbie loves being in the classroom with her students and when you have a teacher who loves being there, it makes school so much better.
Now, my second grade teacher, Mrs. Margaret Cerami, was asked, “How did you feel about school as a child?” Mrs. Cerami said, “As a child I went to school and all of my teachers were nuns. I had great respect for them, and I loved being around them because I thought they were very inspiring.” Mrs. Cerami’s teachers taught her about her faith and how to respect others. Then, she taught me as well as all of her other students about respect and their faith.
Next is my third grade and sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Beverly Gossett. I asked Mrs.
Gossett, “Why do you love being a teacher so much?” She said, “I really feel like I’m called to serve. Someone once told me when I had a grumpy student that I must find Jesus in everybody. And at that moment I found Jesus in everybody.” Mrs. Gossett showed her students how to love everyone and find Jesus in everyone. Once she found Jesus in someone, she used it for the betterment of our school.
Now, Ms. Kristen Trichell, my seventh grade teacher, was asked, “How do you feel about school now as a teacher?” Ms. Trichell said, “I am always ready to motivate my students. To see how fulfilling it is when they struggle and work through something to finally find the ‘AH HA’ moment. I’m always ready to challenge them.” Ms. Trichell taught her students that teachers want them to succeed in school and in life. The teachers love when they see their students achieve their dreams and goals.
Lastly is Mr. Ryan Flynn, my other seventh grade teacher. I asked him, “What do you give to the classroom that makes you stand out from other teachers?” He said, “You just have to be yourself, that’s No.1, you’re just honest to who you are.” Mr. Flynn taught his students to never change who they are and to always be themselves. He taught us to never change because we are love, and love is awesome. He introduced us to Thomas Merton and his philosophy. Before every one of Mr. Flynn’s classes, we prayed and said the quote at the top of this article. We were reminded everyday that we were made in the image of the Greatest Love and that we are here, on this Earth, to love others.
The St. Joan of Arc community loves their school and everyone in it. At SJA, we are taught to love everyone as our neighbor. We are taught to especially love God with all of our heart, soul and mind. This was my last year at St. Joan of Arc, and I will surely miss walking down those halls, seeing everyone’s smiling faces. However, one thing is for sure, I will carry the love that I was taught to use, and I will use it for the betterment of our world. I will show others what it means to love and love will always be my name.