A Change in Name and a Stronger Focus of Mission!

Quantum Computer became AOL. BackRub is now Google. United Healthcare is Optum. Sound of Music became Best Buy and Blue Ribbon Sports is now known as Nike! You see, companies and institutions change their name to reflect their mission and future. This past week, we did the very same thing when Zion Preschool at Saint Miriam became Saint Miriam School.

Since we purchased the property almost five years ago, we have operated Zion Preschool as it was, a part of the former church that occupied this campus, and even though we owned it, try as we might to tie it more to our own mission, we simply failed. We gave the former staff the opportunity to learn about us and our mission, but they decided it wasn’t their mission; that is fine, it doesn’t have to be, but the work must be in keeping with the goals of our parish. And although we failed in some respects with that goal, over the past four years we learned a lot, grew a lot, and helped a lot of people along the way. When we purchased the property, the school was shuttered, the teachers let go, and a 38+ year legacy was in ashes. We decided to resurrect the school, hire the teachers (and even the cleaning lady and administration staff) and continue its mission to serve the children. We kept our end of the bargain; they failed to do the same, so a change has now come.

Over the past three years in particular, we watched and grew, and more students came. We implemented cost controls, added salary increases, and brought new security and upgrades. We also saw the change in School Directors, and then a few of the former teachers decided it was time to retire or move on. All of that was expected and needed. This new change is, too. This past year, the administration team gave me their notice for next fall, but a few unexpected happenings occurred in the last few months that caused us to decide to move up that timeline. It was time to bring a better relationship, a tighter bond, and cohesion to our mission. Welcome Saint Miriam School, a Franciscan Preschool and Kindergarten, tied to who we are and the way we view the world; not a separate entity on the periphery of our vision, but a close-knit community that makes us stronger and brings with it a renewed focus of mission and outreach. And, quite honestly, a whole lot of excitement, too!

Over the next few weeks we will begin another round of needed upgrades and construction. Almost every year that we have been here we have made some significant updates! This year, we will reconfigure the administration areas, change how students enter the school, and build two new offices as well as a S.T.E.A.M.M. Classroom! We will update our signage to reflect the new name and mission. And something even more exciting…we will also put a new roof over our heads! Yes! The parish will get a new roof to match the new Friary Rectory, and the Maintenance Garage for the cemetery will get one to match, too! We are excited about the new look and renewed focus of energy that is about to happen, and the better way we will manage our school, cemetery, and our beautiful church!

After construction is complete, our exciting new school will open September 4thand soon after we will also move toward our new outreach initiatives: Dinner, Church, and Sacred Spaces in Kensington and Dorothy’s Glenn, A Franciscan Village right here on our campus! So much to do, so much to be grateful for…

We are a mission-centered parish community. We have so much to be proud of and so much more to do, together. Please, if you haven’t already, choose now to support us by visiting this page, so that we can continue to do even more great things!



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