Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


By ANDREW NELSON, Staff Writer | Published August 4, 2011

Published: August 4, 2011

On Thursday, July 14, the Atlanta Archdiocese hosted the Archdiocesan Users Group Conference, drawing more than 120 clergy, parish and school staff and volunteers representing 63 parishes, schools and other organizations.

Shannon Wiggins, training coordinator in the archdiocesan Finance Department, said registrants attended presentations by several archdiocesan departments and five guest vendors, including ParishSOFT, Logos, Our Sunday Visitor, Georgia United Credit Union and Faith Interactive.

Michael Warren, controller for the Atlanta Archdiocese, speaks to guests at the July users conference organized by the archdiocesan Finance Office.

Conferences are held twice each year, offering information on upcoming changes to archdiocesan software, reviews of current policies, and various other topics. Among the discussions were presentations about the Annual Appeal, event and group trip insurance, web-based parish registration and more.

A new initiative is starting in the Atlanta Archdiocese to help people deepen their knowledge about the faith.

Amy Daniels, the director of the archdiocesan Office of Formation and Discipleship, announced that the Loyola Institute for Ministry Extension Program (LIMEX) of Loyola University New Orleans will be offering programs here.

Students have the option to take the programs as a degree-seeking graduate student or as a continuing education certificate student. The programs are offered online and in a classroom.

The archdiocese is now offering an on-site master’s degree and certificate of pastoral studies/religious education for ministry leaders, catechists and anyone interested in learning more about the church.

The classes will begin in the last week of August in Athens at the University of Georgia Catholic Center through a partnership between the Office of Formation and Discipleship and LIMEX. Orientation is on Aug. 9. Classes will meet on Tuesday evenings. Some spots are still open for this group.

Other on-site groups may be formed in addition to the one in Athens, if enough students are interested. To schedule an information session to encourage adults to form a group in your area or to request brochures, contact Juliana Barroso at (404) 920-7626 or

Youngsters will have to get used to homework again soon. The new school year starts in just a couple weeks.

Tom Campbell, associate superintendent of schools, said the opening at St. Peter Claver Regional School, Decatur, was delayed as a summer construction project wraps up.  Parents can get more information directly from the school, he said.

Otherwise, here are dates for the first day of school:

The earliest start date is Friday, Aug. 5, at Monsignor Donovan High School, Athens.

On Monday, Aug. 8, students begin at Our Lady of Mercy High School, Fayetteville; St. John the Evangelist School, Hapeville; St. John Neumann Regional School, Lilburn; St. Joseph School, Athens; St. Mary School, Rome; St. Pius X High School, Atlanta; Blessed Trinity High School, Roswell; Holy Redeemer School, Alpharetta; St. Joseph School, Marietta; and St. Thomas More, Decatur.

On Thursday, Aug. 11, classes start at Christ the King School, Atlanta; Our Lady of the Assumption School, Atlanta; and Pinecrest Academy, Cumming.

On Monday, Aug. 15, students report at Immaculate Heart of Mary School, Atlanta; Queen of Angels School, Roswell; St. Catherine of Siena School, Kennesaw; and St. Jude School, Sandy Springs.

On Wednesday, Aug. 17, Our Lady of Victory School, Tyrone, opens for classes.

On Thursday, Aug. 18, new students in grades 7 to 12 report to Holy Spirit Preparatory School, Atlanta. Otherwise, all students attend the next day. Also, students at Notre Dame Academy, Duluth, have their first day on Thursday, Aug. 18.

On Monday, Aug. 22, St. Peter Claver Regional School opens for the fall.

Young scholars at The Marist School rejoice. The academic year at the Atlanta school begins on Wednesday, Aug. 24.

Delegates from the Conference of Catholic Bishops of Cuba visited Atlanta on July 22 and 23 to strengthen the spiritual link that binds Catholics on the island nation and the Cuban diaspora community here.

The visitors included two priests, a Daughters of Charity sister, and a diocesan representative. Two lay leaders from the Miami Archdiocese also accompanied them.

They met with members of Atlanta’s Cuban community at the Cathedral of Christ the King and the Atlanta Cuban Club.

The visitors shared an account of the social and missionary work performed by the church in Cuba. Overcoming many government restrictions, the church offers social services and educational programs mainly to children and the elderly, providing personal care, meals and other basic necessities.

Catholicism in Cuba is flourishing in all parishes and in small local communities, where Mass and catechism programs are held in private homes and other venues, said the delegates.

The visit coincided with the ongoing two-year pilgrimage by the Cuban people to bring the statue of the Virgin Mary throughout each town of Cuba’s 11 dioceses. It is being done to prepare for the 2012 Jubilee celebrating the 400th anniversary of the miraculous finding of the image of Our Lady of Charity floating on the rough waters of the northern coast of Cuba.

The Our Lady of Charity feast day celebration will be held in Atlanta on Thursday, Sept. 8, at 7 p.m. at the cathedral.

Kathy Wood, principal of Queen of Angels School, Roswell, has been recognized by the National Association of Elementary School Principals as distinguished principal of 2011. Wood is one of only five private school principals in the country to be named with this honor.

Wood also received recognition by the National Catholic Educational Association earlier this year as principal of the year, again among a small pool of 12 to receive the award nationally.

“To my knowledge, and confirmed by many of our longer-serving principals, Kathy becomes the first principal from our Archdiocese to receive both an NCEA principal of the year recognition and the Distinguished Principal Award sponsored by NAESP,” said Diane Starkovich, superintendent of Catholic schools.