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School News 2019-2020

An Award-Winning Book Helps Those Touched by Cancer

MissyWaltherBookPublishedApril2019Two Creighton University students collaborate to write and illustrate a book, Cross of a Different Kind: Cancer and Christian Spirituality to help people affected by cancer. Anthony Maranise, the author, was inspired to write from his own experiences with cancer. He’s been in remission 21 years. MissyPhotosMirjana, “Missy” Walther, class of ‘12 at St. Mary’s and currently student teaching there always had a love of drawing and painting. Their online friendship strengthened by their Christian faith led them to help others. Maranise asked Walther to illustrate the book. “For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.” (Luke 12:34) The winning duo received a Best Book award at the American Book Fest in Los Angeles last year in the Religion-Christianity category. They have been nominated for other awards as well. Their greatest reward though, is knowing proceeds from their book sales and illustration prints will benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital where Maranise was treated and other nonprofits. For more details and interviews with Maranise and Walther read the article in Creighton magazine.  Click here for the article.

A Rock Star

CindyMenzel2019EducatoroftheYearCindy Menzel, St. Mary's 5th grade teacher is named "Metro Educator of the Year, Elementary" by the Archdiocese of Omaha. She will be honored September 12th at the 2019 Archbishop's Dinner for Education.
Her daughter Hannah expressed what so many others feel. "A little piece on my mama. She’s probably the most humble woman I’ve ever met. She never toots 🎺her own horn, and she wears so many 🎩  hats to help our dear sweet Catholic school be so successful! Mom, YOU ROCK!!!

No wonder we love our school.

- From the Archdiocese of Omaha (see below)

2019 Elementary Educators of the Year – Archdiocese of Omaha

Each year, the Archbishop’s Dinner for Education honors eight outstanding educators for their contributions to Catholic education. The 2019 Dinner for Education will be held September 12 at Embassy Suites in La Vista. Leading up to the event, we’ll highlight this year’s honorees on the blog. Read on to learn about our Elementary Educators of the Year.

Metro Educator of the Year – Elementary: Cindy Menzel, St. Mary’s School (Bellevue, Nebraska)

Fifth-grade teacher Cindy Menzel just completed her twelfth year at St. Mary Catholic School in Bellevue, and she has had an impact on nearly every aspect of the school and parish. “She works daily to live her faith and bring her students in closer relationship with Jesus. She does this out of love of the Lord and in service to others,” said principal Patricia Wallinger.

Cindy has been instrumental in the school improvement process helping to increase the use of technology as well as the AdvancEd accreditation process. Her knowledge of students, curriculum and data collection have led to a stronger math curriculum.

“I am hopeful that my efforts in guiding students to find their own gifts, and to see the gifts in others, will have a lasting impact,” said Cindy. “Perhaps most of all, I pray that my love of Christ and willingness to encourage students to recognize His great love for each of us will remain with them longer after they have passed through my doors.”

God’s Blessing in Marriage

ShaneGilesWeddingPhotoShane Giles, a 2008 graduate of St. Mary's married the love of his life, Jessica Trinkl, on August 17, 2019, at the Basicila St. Josaphat in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The ceremony was con-celebrated by Bishop William Callahan and Fr. Pat Reidy. Bishop Callahan is the Bishop of the Diocese of La Cross, Wisconsin and a Trinkl family friend. Fr. Reidy is a Holy Cross priest and was Shane's rector at Notre Dame. Both Shane and Jessica are 2016 Notre Dame graduates where they met their last 5 days of their senior year, a union blessed by their mutual Catholic faith. Shane's brother Sean, a 2004 graduate of St. Mary's was best man and his children who currently attend St. Mary's were also in the wedding. Shane and Jessica expressed their vows by joining hands with a crucifix held in between symbolizing God as a perpetual part of their wedding and marriage. They reside in Nashville, Tennessee where Shane works for Ferrara Candy Company in Chicago, Illinois and Jessica attends medical school at Vanderbilt University.

Taking Command

AtoAParadeORionO’Rion Moreno, St. Mary’s class of (’16) commanded the Bellevue East ROTC formation at the Arrows to Aerospace Parade. This is Moreno’s fourth year in ROTC where he currently holds the rank of Staff Sargent. He has been on the drill team and the Honor Guard and has run cross country. After he graduates from East in 2020 O’Rion plans to attend UNO, the University of Nebraska at Omaha.






Going Back to School

RebekahMenzel4thGradeRebekah Menzel went to school at St. Mary’s. Her mother, Cindy is the school’s 5th grade teacher. She has lots of close ties to St. Mary’s. Her brother and sister went to school there and now some of her sister’s children are going to St. Mary’s. Rebekah has always had a passion for art. She knew one day she would be an art teacher. Her ultimate dream, to come back to St. Mary’s. Last year her dream came true. She became St. Mary’s art teacher. Of course, that meant her teacher and mentor Mrs. Schutt would retire. Rebekah is carrying on some of the traditions Mrs. Schutt implemented at certain grade levels, but she is also making it uniquely her own.DCOrnaments1 In her first-year Rebekah and her students received the honor of having to create Christmas decorations to represent Nebraska as part of the National Park Foundation 2018 America Celebrates display. She just started year two here, one change, her name is now Mrs. Crider. (The photo to the left is of Rebekah in 4th grade at St. Mary’s)


St Mary's Information

St. Mary's Catholic School is a Pre-Kindergarten through Eighth Grade School of the Archdiocese of Omaha. Our mission is to provide a Catholic education that nurtures students' hearts and minds to become servant leaders in an ever-changing world.

Our philosophy of education is to offer a five-day program to assist families in teaching those truths, skills, and ideals, which are necessary for Christian living. We believe that education must develop the faculties and abilities of the whole child: spiritually, intellectually, physically, and emotionally. To help achieve this, our faculty and staff are an integral part of the formation of Christian community and dedicate themselves to the task of developing Christian citizens.



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