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Catholic schools in Canandaigua, Geneva, and Penn Yan celebrate honorary week

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In New York, the remaining three Catholic schools are observing Catholic Schools Week, a tradition that has significantly dwindled since the mid-1960s when there were Catholic elementary schools in Clyde, Seneca Falls, Waterloo, Newark, Penn Yan, two in Geneva, and Canandaigua, along with a Catholic high school in Geneva. Over the years, many of these institutions have closed, leaving only St. Mary’s in Canandaigua, St. Michael’s in Penn Yan, and the merged St. Francis-St. Stephen’s school in Geneva to partake in the week-long celebration that runs through February 3.

St. Mary’s in Canandaigua kicked off Catholic Schools Week with a coffee hour after the 9 a.m. Mass on January 28, offering school tours and information about its programs. St. Francis-St. Stephen’s in Geneva began the week with a special Mass and a Family Fun Night, including a scholastic book fair and themed days for students. The school, catering from pre-K to Grade 6, is sponsored by Our Lady of Peace Parish.

St. Michael’s School in Penn Yan engaged students with diverse activities such as decorating a home altar, participating in special Mass, volunteering, and hosting a chili cookoff. The celebration aims to highlight “Catholic Schools: United in Faith and Community,” emphasizing the unity and community spirit inherent in Catholic education. Despite the closures of many schools over the years, the enthusiasm for Catholic Schools Week remains strong among the institutions that continue to serve their communities.