Weekly NCA Newsletter! 
December 11, 2019 - Issue 16
 View this email in your browser
School News & Reminders

Christmas Show: Thursday, December 12, NCA Primary School Grades K - 4 will present All is Calm, All is Bright--An Evening of Candlelight Carols.  The students have been practicing their carols in Mr. Rholl's music class and they are all looking forward to delighting us in preparation for Christmas. The following are a couple of reminders for the evening:

  • Students should dress in their best and wear Christmas colors of red, green, silver, gold.  
  • Students should arrive at St. Gertrude's church no later than 6:15 and should sit in their assigned seats for the show.
  • The program begins at 6:30.
Transitioning to the Middle School: The event has been rescheduled to Tuesday, January 21st at 6:30pm in Colletti Hall more information will be sent out after Christmas Break. 

Invest in Kids Act Tuition Tax Credit Scholarship (TCS) update for 2020-2021

Key items to note:

  • Empower Illinois SGO application process begins January 15, 2020, Reservations Open at 6:30 PM Click to Submit at 7:00 PM.
  • The Empower Illinois application process will again be a two-step process.
  • The Big Shoulders SGO application date is January 14, 2020, Time 8:00 AM.
  • Please put these dates on your calendar if you plan on applying.
  • NCA plans to have our Middle School Campus computer lab open for applicants to apply and we will have staff present to assist with the application process.
  • If you received TCS funding for 2019-2020, you still must reapply for 2020-2021. The applications remain on a first come first serve basis. NCA families need to have their tax information together before the application dates.
2019 Heart of NCA Nominations: We are now accepting nominations for the 2019 Heart of NCA. Every year during Catholic Schools Week, NCA honors a volunteer who exemplifies what NCA represents and is an unwavering ambassador for our mission. If you have a volunteer you would like to nominate, please complete the attached form and submit it to Christine Huzenis in a sealed envelope or email at Nominations are due January 10.

Catholic Schools Week: We're looking for families who will speak at one Mass at each parish on Sunday, Jan 26. You will receive service hours for speaking at the Mass. If you are available, please contact Shakira at 

Service Hours: Remember that every family must complete 20 hours of service every year! All volunteer opportunities are posted on SchoolSpeak. Look often as new opportunities are added all the time! There are opportunities now listed that do NOT require VIRTUS training! All Service hours must be recorded in SchoolSpeak. Please see the quick link on the left side of the website. There are postings for Primary School recess volunteers on SchoolSpeak. 

Service Opportunity: Christmas Bazaar Volunteer Slots Now Open- To volunteer to help at the Bazaar, visit Under Search for a Sign-Up, type in and choose how you’d like to help. Volunteer slots do count toward NCA service hours!

NCA Calendars: We have NCA 2019-2020 Family Calendars for sale at both campuses. They are $15 and showcase all of the artwork that was sold at the Soiree. The calendars make great gifts, and they have all the relevant school dates and run August - August.  Proceeds go to NCA's arts program. Be sure to stop by the main office and purchase one!

Please see order form attached.

Queen of Heart: YAY!!!!  Another rollover!  # 54 revealed the 6 of clubs.  The pot will be over $26,000!  Half of that would make someone’s Christmas merry and bright!   But you have to play to win!  You can buy your tickets in the school offices, The Double Bubble, the Edge of Sweetness or the Sovereign.  The drawing will be at 6:30 on Saturday at the Double Bubble!  Come and join in on the fun!!


Important Dates:

December 12: Primary School (Gr. K – 4) Christmas Program- St. Gertrude Church @ 6:30 PM
December 13: Middle School Dance - Activity Center - 6:30 pm-9 pm

December 14: Town Hall Meeting at 6:30 pm in the PC cafeteria

December 17: Middle School Advent Reconciliation 10:00 AM- St. Margaret Mary Church
December 18: Holiday Open House at Primary School at 6:30 PM

December 19: NCAPO Candy Cane Day
December 19: NCA Soiree Out of Uniform Day bring $2.00 or $5.00 and come out of uniform. All proceeds benefit the NCA Soiree.

December 19:  Preschool Christmas Program Primary School Gym @1:30 PM

December 20:  All-School Prayer Service—Los Posadas
St. Gertrude Church @ 8:30 AM- Middle School late start 8:10 at Primary School Gym 
December 20: Red & Green Dress Down Day- Christmas Classroom Celebrations- Early Release Day- MS Campus 1:50 - PS Campus 2:10- ECP available at both campuses
December 23 - January 3: Christmas Break
January 6: School resumes
January 7: NCA Soiree Meeting PC Cafeteria 6:00 pm

January 8: Professional Development Early Release: MS Campus 1:50 Dismissal- Primary School Campus 2:10 Dismissal- ECP available at both campuses

🎅🏽The secret is out! Santa Claus is coming to Northside Catholic Academy! Invite a friend and join us on Wednesday, Dec 18, at 6:30 pm at our Holiday Open House. It is going to be a jolly good time. We will be serving hot cocoa, cider, and cookies. Come and take pictures with Santa Claus while listening to Christmas carols sung by NCA students.
Did you know that when you shop for the holidays at AmazonSmile donates to Northside Catholic Academy?

AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon that lets customers enjoy the same wide selection of products, low prices, and convenient shopping features as on The difference is that when customers shop on AmazonSmile (, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the price of eligible purchases to the charitable organizations selected by customers.

So when shopping online this holiday, please be sure to shop AmazonSmile and select Northside Catholic Academy!

Please click the links below to review STAMP Newsletters:
Our School Counselor, Therese Schreiner, has been teaching and counseling students for 52 years. She has learned a lot on her journey, and she's here to share her words of wisdom with our community. This month Mrs. Schreiner is talking to us about "Mindfulness."


During this busy holiday season, we are often swept into doing one thing after another, without a moment of reflection. I believe it is one of the best times to add “mindfulness” to your to-do list.

Mindfulness is a buzz word today. Some think it is meditation, but it is more than that. It means focusing your awareness on the present moment; calmly aware of your emotions and physical sensations without judgment, as you perform whatever activity in which you are involved.

The benefits are many. Mindfulness increases concentration, improves self-esteem, strengthens resilience, and helps to control anger. Hence, the trick is to infuse mindfulness into each day. I would like to make some suggestions on how you alone, or with your children, can exhibit mindfulness.

Do a puzzle, go for a walk, and do not judge whether the trees, the birds, the grass, are beautiful or not so visually pleasant. Sit and have a snack. Observe the color of the food, or the bitter, salty, or sweet taste. Be mindful of what you are eating or observing. This helps you to be in the moment. Find the weather inside your child’s heart-sunny, cloudy, rainy, or stormy. Ask about it.

To de-stress, sit quietly and work on deep breathing exercises by inhaling through your nose and slowly exhaling through your mouth. If you take fifteen minutes each day to be mindful, it will pay off at school, at home, or in your work environment.

Building a mindset of mindfulness takes time. Start today!

May your holiday season be filled with peace, and the New Year a healthy one.


Therese Schreiner

School Counselor

Our 7th-grade scientists were hard at work in the lab this week dissecting and examining owl pellets to identify the creature's contents and further investigate the health of the ecosystem.

NCA Wildcat Athletics 🐾

If you have any questions about our NCA Wildcat Athletics, please contact either our AD Dave Scholtes ( or Assistant AD Seamus McGowan (


Wildcat Spirit Wear Sale!!!!!
**** NEW Wildcat Spirit Wear Sale!!!!! Show your support and get your NCA Wildcat spirit gear today!!! Photos of the Spirit Wear are attached.

NCA Basketball Week #3 Update🐾🏀

The 8th-grade boys Lakefront team finally broke their losing streak last week defeating OSM Thursday night 52-44. Everyone scored and hustled in the awesome team win. Freddie Krug and Max Heidkamp led the way scoring 18 and 16 respectively.

The 8th-grade boys Lakefront team lost to Viator in a hard-fought battle. A special shout out to Griffin Bunn hitting 3 big 3s on the night.

The 8th-grade girls went on a run vs St Hilary. They routed St Hilary 51-37. Another great team effort both offensively and defensively.

The 6th-grade girls got off to a slow start but made strides in 2nd half vs St Andrew. Unfortunately, even with the improved play they couldn’t catch the Bulldogs and lost 15-6.

The 6th-grade boys used a couple of key transition baskets in the 2nd quarter to pull away from St Josephats 27-15. These boys are now 3-0.

The 5th-grade boys' White team beat Hardy Prep 20-13 thanks to a 13-4 run in the 2nd half. Their coaches thought they played tough defense, rebounded better, and passed well.

The 5th-grade boys' Blue team had a back-and-forth battle against St Helens. These young wildcats held on and won 12-10.

Wildcat Fans
Please keep on an eye on our Athletic Calendar on the NCA website and come out and CHEER on our wildcats. Look out for our Soccer, Volleyball, Cross Country, and Big Red football schedules. Please visit NCA's Athletic Calendar for more details about these games.

Tis the season! Stop by and see Santa as he visits with kids of all ages at Theater on the Lake. Create a new holiday tradition and enjoy free hot chocolate and cookies at The Lakefront Restaurant before heading to Zoo Lights at Lincoln Park Zoo, just one block west. No admission and all are welcome!  Mention that you are from NCA and a bottle of wine will be donated from the Theatre on the Lake to the NCA Soiree!!
Preparing for the Christmas Pageant: As is our tradition during the gospel of the Christmas Eve 5:00 pm Family Mass, the kids from St. Gertrude parish will act out the Christmas story. 

I will need  Mary, Joseph, shepherds, three kings, and lots of angels. I also need parents to come to the rehearsals and assist with organizing the kids. 

Parents need to attend the rehearsal so that when the rehearsal is over, the kids have a ride home. This will count as NCA service hours if you are in need of them.  I am hoping to have two rehearsals in the church after the 10:30 am Mass on December 1 and 15 for 30 minutes each and then one final dress rehearsal on December 22 at 12:30 in the church.

If you and your child are interested in participating in the Christmas pageant this year, please contact me at

Children's Choir: The Music Director at St. Gertrude’s Parish, Ms. Mary Clare Barker, would like to start a children’s choir that would sing a couple of pieces for the All Are Welcome concert on Saturday, November 16 at 7:30 pm. It would also be nice to have the children’s choir sing something at the monthly family Masses at 10:30 in the church.

If your child or children are interested, please email her at Rehearsals will be on Saturdays at 3 - 3:45 in the church. If you can’t make this time on a regular basis, you should not consider being part of the children’s choir. She will also need at least one parent present at every rehearsal as Archdiocesan rules mandate the presence of two adults when in the company of children on church property.

Change in St. Gertrude Rectory Hours

The Rectory will close at 4:45 pm on Fridays beginning Friday, September 6.

St. Gertrude Religious Ed Teacher Needed
Have you been thinking of a way to give back or make connections at St. Gertrude? Consider becoming a catechist! Catechists teach Religious Education classes, which at St. Gertrude are offered to children in grades 1-8. Classes are taught on 

Sunday mornings from 9:00-10:15 am. Other catechists teach brief lessons of faith based on the Sunday readings in our Kids Word program. This takes place during the 10:30 am Masses in Church and is for children in grades K-4.

The goal of catechists is to share their faith and the lessons of God and Jesus by creating age-appropriate lessons, teach the traditions of the church, and build community with the families of their students. Catechists are usually not professional teachers, just willing parents and parishioners who enjoy kids and want to help them grow in a personal relationship with God, participate in the sacraments, and develop a mature conscience and integrate faith in all areas of their lives.

Candidates must either be Virtus-certified or willing to take training that educates participants on the signs of child sexual abuse, the methods, and means by which offenders commit abuse, how to prevent it, and submit to a background check. 

Interested in Being Catholic?
The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is a process by which adults learn more about the Catholic Church. This free program begins on Sunday, September 8 after the 10:30 am Mass in the Ministry Center and meets until Pentecost.

Many people who begin RCIA are non-Catholics seeking to become Catholic or at least to explore whether Catholicism might be a good home. Those who complete the process and decide to become Catholic are initiated into the Church at the Easter Vigil Mass on Holy Saturday. Others who take RCIA are already Catholic but want a deeper understanding of their faith foundation.

The RCIA process does not ask those who have been baptized in another faith to give up their denominational experiences. Rather, the RCIA process seeks to add new colors and designs to their existing faith life tapestry. In addition to attending Mass, the RCIA process includes weekly gatherings of breaking open the Word of God, sharing our stories, and learning about our faith traditions.

For information about the RCIA process at St. Gertrude or to register for the program, contact Kevin Chears at or call the Rectory at 773.764.3621.
Volunteer Sign Up Directions
1. Go onto
2. Click on the Quick Link that says Volunteer
3. There you will see NCA’s volunteer opportunities.  All volunteer opportunities require Virtus Training unless otherwise noted.
4. Click on the sign up you want.  Find a spot to sign up!
5. Remember every Family needs 20 service hours!
Volunteer Requirements
1. Completion of form 7703
2. Completion of Online background screening (eApps database)
3. Completion of CANTS form (DCFS background screening – paper only – must be submitted annually)
4. Submission of a signed Code of Conduct form
5. Completion of the Virtus training (must pre-register online)
 All forms and other information regarding these requirements can be found on the NCA website under Volunteer. Thank you for working with us to ensure the safety of all children!

Copyright © 2018 Northside Catholic Academy. All rights reserved.

Primary School Campus: 6216 N. Glenwood Ave., Chicago, IL 60660
Phone: 773-743-6277  Fax: 773-743-6174

Middle School Campus: 7318 N. Oakley Ave., Chicago, IL 60645
Phone: 773-271-2008  Fax: 773-764-1095 
Join our NCAPO List Serv.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.